With summer almost knocking doors in most of India, the next few months are a great time for wildlife lovers to go on their favourite expeditions! It’ll be hot, yes – but that also means that wildlife sightings will be that much better!
If you’re on your first wildlife reserve trip – be it a weekend trip to Corbett (if you re in Delhi) or a longer, extended trip to Kaziranga, here are top tips from wildlife enthusiasts Ferzyn, Anupam and Ruchi – who have scratched off many national parks in India off their adventure bucket list!
Choose your time of the year
The timing of when you visit a national park does make a difference in terms of your experience. While visiting during cooler months in India will mean you are not riding through the reserve in sweltering heat, the best time really is summer. Wildlife sightings are higher during summer as animals can be found around ponds and watering holes.
Stay within the reserve
If you’re visiting a wildlife national park, staying at forest lodges inside the park enhances your experience rather than just a safari. Calls of the wild and sounds of nature are around you through the day, making your experience more wholesome.
Book in Advance
During peak season and weekends, both the safaris and the forest accommodation inside national parks are heavily booked. So book well in advance, 2 months is usually a good time.
Before you plan your trip itinerary, it’s a good idea to check for safari timings. For example, some parks have only morning safaris on some days of the week. This will also help you plan your arrivals and departures.
Sun and Dust protection
Safaris essentially are hours of rides in the sun (open top safari vehicles ensure exciting doses of UV) – so carry sun protection and scarves in case you re allergic to dust that the jeep throws up while it navigates through the jungle. Also, hours in the sun means you carry enough water (and glucose if needed) to keep yourself hydrated.
Be responsible visitors
Selfie sticks and flash photography are irritants even for humans on a holiday – you can imagine what it may do to animals! Remember to consciously be responsible visitors at the national park – turn off your flash, talk softly so you don’t scare off animals and of course do not do not get off your vehicle – however exciting the sighting seems.
Dress in earthy colours
To enhance your park experience, the best thing to do is to camouflage and go as unnoticed as possible to animals. Wearing bright colours – say orange for example – may distract animals. They may sense danger and flee (there goes your sighting!) or may associate some colours with a predator. Dress in earthy colour so you’re camouflaged and can experience wildlife sightings in their natural ecosystem.
Scratch off visiting a National Park off your Itch List.