I always wanted to visit a wildlife sanctuary and experience that adventure in the woods. My friends always shared some interesting stories on their jungle safari at various tiger national parks and that excited me a lot. The only place I saw the wild animals was the city’s zoo. But eventually, I got an opportunity to visit Tadoba tiger reserve on the 17th of January, 2021.
Two weeks before the jungle safari we went to Chandrapur at my relative’s place for the exciting two-day fun. Before leaving this city, we thought of coming here again for Tadoba Jungle Safari. And that’s how one trip led to another mind blogging trip.
About Tadoba Jungle Safari –
Tadoba National Park or Tadoba Andhari Tiger Reserve is the oldest and largest wildlife destination in the Chandrapur district of Maharashtra. The dense forest area has a wide range of wild animals including tigers, sloth bears, deers, sambar, leopard, bison, sambhar, jackals, nilgai, red wolves, and a lot more. You can feel the spectacular aura of the Tadoba jungle as you enter the premises.
Tadoba has six main gates to enter the premises. The gates are distributed as three prominent zones.
1. Moharli Zone – Moharli & Khutwanda Gates
2. Tadoba Zone – Kolara & Navegaon Gates
3. Kolsa Zone – Pangadi & Zari Gates
These zones offer the deep jungle adventurous rides, where these gates are the starting point of the jungle safari.
Also, there are some buffer zones, which people often confuse with actual jungle areas. So, these Tadoba buffer zones are also the part of Tadoba jungle, but these areas consist of some villages. You get to experience the same adventure in both regions.
There are two slots for the safari – morning (6 am to 10 am) and afternoon (2 pm to 6 pm). Both slots have different experiences to take. The offline, as well as online booking facility, is available on Todoba’s official website. If you google tiger reserve Tadoba, various websites will be available for jungle safari booking and information, but I would prefer to go with the “Maharashtra Eco Tourism website”.
Tadoba Resorts – The feeling of living in the forests is wonderful and exciting. Hence, various resorts are functional in the Tadoba region. Tadoba tiger valley resort is one of the beautiful resorts one can choose to live in for one to two days.
Kick-starting the journey
Our voyage started from Nagpur to Chandrapur. To reach the destination – Tadoba from Nagpur – takes around 3 hours. On the way, we visited an incredible Jain Temple in Bhadravati. We had a wholesome lunch at my relative’s place in Chandrapur and set out for “Zopla Maruti Temple, Ajaypur”. More on these two places in the next blog.
And the next day was our Jungle Safari! We booked a morning 6 am slot a few days before. So, accordingly, we got ready by 5 30 am and started moving to our entry point – Tadoba Moharli gate. It was too dark and a very chilly morning. The journey started with excitement and fun.
The Hurdle in our way
And the biggest hurdle came into our way after covering 10 minutes of distance. Our car got punctured! The silent roads led us to nowhere. The dark roads, high speed made this happen, but there is always a way. We were traveling to the gate by two cars, and the only option left for us was to return to the house and bring the third car. So, finally, after half an hour we left for the journey. (We kept the punctured car on the way). Sometimes, the problem arises out of nowhere, but the solution and those memories stick in our minds forever.
Due to this mishap, we reached the destination by 6 30 am, we got our tickets and IDs checked at the counter and commenced our jungle safari. We had booked two jeeps for eleven of us. Six people along with a guide and driver are allowed in one gypsy.
Tadoba Booking Price: 5000 Rs per jeep
You have to switch off/ put on airplane mode on your phone during the entire journey. Two of our jeeps took two different directions in the search of wild animals.
The Start of the Jungle Safari
The feeling of entering into the forests was fantastic. You could feel nature’s sound and aroma, with greenery all around – the marvelous treat to your eyes, nose, and ears. My excitement was at its peak when we got the vision of the first wild animal – The Bison. It was huge and continuously staring at us. I was too frightened to look at it, but our guide relaxed us. We clicked some good pictures of the animal and proceeded further. Our guide told us the explanation of one myth.
The Jungle Myth
Wild animals attack only on animals and when they are hungry. The only time they could attack a person is – when they are hungry and a person is alone but happens very rarely.
The silence is the key to getting a sight of an animal.
You have to remain silent the entire time, and that was a little difficult task for me. Because whenever I spotted an animal, I would get excited and scream about getting a glimpse of an animal.
The silence is the key to getting a sight of an animal. And hence we spotted two nilgais hiding behind the bushes. After some time we spotted a male nilgai running in front of us. I was mesmerized to glance at this beautiful moment.
After some time we noticed some noise in the bushes and we turned back to see an incredible view of a group of Sambar deers. They were running away from us, but the glimpse of those deers brought a big smile to my face. Moving ahead after two minutes, we perceived two peacocks dancing near a lake, but as soon as we came near them, they ran away behind the bushes to hide completely.
The rich fauna of Tadoba
On our journey, we spotted many wild hens, wild pigs, some snakes, and some very beautiful birds right from eagle to woodpecker. We could locate birds mostly near water reservoirs. Also, the lake and river views were phenomenal to look at – clean and peaceful – especially comfortable for animals to live.
The glimpse of Tiger
After taking a short break, we proceeded towards a lake to spot a tiger. We waited for some time at a treehouse. That was really amazing how these tree roofs are built to spot animals, where you have to wait silently for a big surprise. Usually, animals come towards the lake or river to drink water and you get a chance to capture them on your camera. While leaving the spot, we could see the tiger coming out of the bushes. And that was worth it! The moment was filled with fear and excitement together. I couldn’t utter any word out of my mouth, but my eyes were continuously staring at this big cat.
Most people visit the jungle in search of tigers, and it happens many times that you have to return back without getting a glimpse. The only thing I understand is if you don’t get a glimpse, then you would definitely return back for another jungle safari and if you are lucky enough to see the tiger, still you would feel like coming back here for another adventurous journey. After all, that’s a factor of luck! But I found this jungle majestic, getting a sight of each animal is luck and happiness.
The End of 4 hours
While returning back to the gates after 4 hours of journey, we spotted three deers running across our jeep giving us the most spectacular view. Two of them were male deers and one was a female deer. And this beautiful scene ended our most amazing jungle safari tour!
Moving into the forests felt like wandering into the fresh air, experiencing silence through the noise of animals and birds. Every moment there was lively. The 4 hours tour was a great satisfaction to continuously look for animals, out of your daily electronic life. And when an animal passes by your jeep, the feeling that you get is incomparable – the heart beats the fastest, you avoid everything around you to get one sight of that animal. Happiness is totally uncontrollable.