One of the most popular national parks in the country, Bandhavgarh boasts of a rich diversity with a broken terrain that includes of grassy swamps, rocky hill ranges and forested valleys and topography of deciduous forest, sharp ridges and open meadows.
Bandhavgarh gets its name from the Bandhavgarh hill that is placed right in the center of the park. Also one of India’s Tiger reserves, this national park is encircled by a group of 32 hills.
Apart from the wildlife, another prime attraction within the forest is Bandhavgarh Fort, built during the 14th century. Bandhavgarh National Park is not only known for having a high tiger population density but it is also has a huge breeding population of leopards and a number of deer species.
The park is divided into 4 prime zones, Magdhi, Tala, Panpatta and Khitauli wherein Tala is known for being the richest biodiversity zone.
It is also known as white tiger country, this is a small National park, compact yet full of game. The forests of Bandhavgarh is most deciduous. The density of tiger population at Bandhavgarh is the highest known in India.It is equally rich in bird life, boasting of over 200 species.
The flowering and fruit trees attract woodland birds, which include green pigeon, Jerdon’s leaf bird, crested serpent eagle, and variable hawk eagle. About Bandhavgarh National Park: Prior to becoming a National Park, the forests around Bandhavgarh have been maintained as Shilagarh or game preserve,of the Maharaja of Rewa in 1947. Rewa State was merged with M.P (Madhya Pradesh) Bandhavgarh came under the regulation of M.P. Covering 448 Sqm, Bandhavgarh is situated in Shadhol district among the outlying hills of Vindhya Range.
At the center of the park in Bandhavgarh hill, rising 811 meters above MSL surrounding it a large number of smaller hills separated by gently sloping valleys.
Bandhavgarh is densely populated with other species the great Gaur, or Indian Bison can be seen with ease as they come onto the meadows to graze at dusk. Sambas, Chital, Chinkara, Muntjac, wild pigs and Barking Deer are a common sight and Nilgai and Chinkara are to be seen in the more open areas in the park.
In and Around
Bandhavgarh park is divided into 4 main zone: Tala Zone, Magadhi Zone, Khitauli Zone, Panpatha Zone. Out of these Magadhi and Tala zones are known for the highest concentration of wildlife. The prime attraction of Tala and Magadhi zone is that they offer maximum opportunities for tiger sightings.
Although there are no records for the year of construction of the fort but according to some ancient holy books, it was erected during the times of Ramayana. The top of the fort offers some amazing views of the surrounding greenery. The last inhabitants relieved the park in the year 1935.
Bandhavgarh Ancient Caves
There is a group of around 39 caves in and around the surrounding hillocks in a radius of around 5 km. the oldest cave was probably built during the first century A.D. These caves have embossed figures of pigs, elephants, horsemen and tigers along with inscriptions in Brahmi script. The largest cave dating back to the 10 century AD, called the Badi Gufa, has a huge entrance, various pillars and 9 small rooms.
Quite close to the national park, Baghel museum is home to valuables of the Maharaja of Rewa who took care of Bandhavgarh as his personal hunting ground or Shikargah. The museum also has a stuffed White Tiger.
Placed on the outskirts of Bandhavgarh National Park, Gharpuri dam is a nice place to enjoy sightings of colorful water birds.
This place is named after the holy temple of sidhbaba(god of indian worship). This is the most common point from where you can see the tiger near this temple. There is a large marshy meadow behind this temple where wild fauna can be easliy witnessed. Here you will find almost guranteed sighting of sambhar, chital, painted stroke and sometimes wildboars. The sidhbaba region was the territory of some the main tiger of bandhavgarh such as charger and bokha.
Charkradhara area is a large meadow area inside the park popular for the tiger sighting. During the summers this meadow looks like a open hunting ground for the predators. The charkradhara meadow is surrounded by hilly regions. It is a marshy meadow which is rich in flora and fauna. As the availability of food, water and hiding grass is through out the year, so the wlid animals can be easily sighted in this region.
Gopalpur region is at the north east region of bandhavgarh national park. This region is a marshy area always filled with river water. The aquatic plants and mammals are rich in this area which makes the area suitable for bird watching. So of the birds which can be easily sighted in the gopalpur region is Kingfishers, painted storks, lapwings and stilts.
This 65 ft horizontally laid idol of lord vishnu is the origin of river charanganga. The reclining statute of lord vishnu on the seven hooded serpent is the architechture of the past. the vicinity is rich with fruit bearing trees. On the ocassion of Diwali , the biggest festival of hindus, people use to decorate lamps around the vishnu Idol. Watch out for the malabar pied hornbill near shesh shayia.
‘Badi Gufa’ in english means the biggest cave. This cave is one of the biggest caves in the bandhavgarh national park region which dates back to the tenth century. This caves is being made by carving the solid rock of sandstone. These caves were the shelters of the army of the king during the medivial period. Now the caves are home to wide variety of bats. The badi gufa is a man made cave not a natural one.
This wet region inside the bandhavgarh reserve is full of aromatic plant “Pendanus”. That why it is also known as pendanus point. The indian name of pendanus plant is kewra. This region is surrounded by the shadows of lofty Jamun and Arjun trees.
Three Cave Point
The three cave point is visible from the ganesh hillock road. It is a classic example of the prevalent architechural techniques used during the past. The caves now porvied the shelter for the wild animals like tiger, sloth bear and even for the leopards.
The name of this region resembles the wedding ground of the wife of lord rama. The meaning of Mandap itself wedding ground. It is a single rock which arches over like a bridge. The mandap also looks similar to this rock arch. The Name of the famous tigress sita is being named after this place. sita is the mother of the most of the tigers and tigeress in bandhavgarh reserve area.
This is a natural deep george which is a result of geographical processes The water flows continously in this region. You can listen the song of the jungle near this waterbody.
The Photographer’s Point
This point is on the way when we drive back from the Route B. This point is the mountain top which gives a paniramic view of the bandhavgarh widlife sanctuary. The Photography from this point is not allowed for every visitors. Special permission is to be taken from the forest director for the photography purpose.
The Tigers during the summers spend their afternoon in this region as this area is mostly covered with the shadows of the trees. There is a spring water source in this area from where the water comes out through out the year even during the summer. As the region is darkened by shadows, it is commonly difficult to see the tiger in Andheri Jhiria.
The rajbahera region is a marshy meadow which feeds the chitals, sambhar and wild boars. The river damnar originates from Rajbahera. Different species of birds can be easily sighted from this area. You can also see the bandini hills from this region.
Charger the dominant male in bandhavgarh who ruled the jungle for over a decade. This place was the resing ground of Charger. he died in the year 2000. Charger holds the record to the most photographed male tiger in the world. he died due this natural death. When he died it was very difficult to locate as during the last time of their life they hide in a very secret place where no body can approach
A scenic place in the Panpatha sanctuary, situated 12 km from Tala. It is a place to watch a variety of birds.
A picturesque fall 45 kms from Tala on the river Johilla forming a short stretch of the south-eastern boundary of the Park.
A beautiful place for bird watching, 16 kms from Tala on way to Panpatha.
Vijay Raghavgarh Fort
Fort is situated at 35kms. away from Katni city, in Vijayraghavgarh town. Vijayraghavgarh fort was made in 1826 by Thakur Prayagdas. He was son of Maihar King Bishan Singh. Fort is surrounded by a deep trench around it similar to Red fort of Delhi. Trench was made for security reasons. Most of the fort was made up of sand stone. Vijayraghavgarh fort was dedicated to lord Vijay-raghav. There is no entrance fee to visit the fort. Places to visit inside the fort are: Rang mahal, Raghav mahal, Bramha Chabutra, Sita temple, Samadhi sthal, Gupt dwar, Antah puram, Raja ki rasoi etc. Some area of fort was damaged during freedom struggle of 1857 when British forces attacked on the fort as king was with freedom strugglers. Fort can be reached from Katni city by road. One can also do enroute visit of fort while traveling from Bandhavgarh to Khajuraho via Maihar or vice-versa
Bandhavgarh Tiger Reserve remains open from October to June months for visitors. So one can visit the park at any day during these months.
How to Reach
The nearest Airport for Bandhavgarh National Park is Jabalpur & Khajuraho. Jabalpur 200 Kms / 04 Hrs Drive & Khajuraho 250 Kms / 05 Hrs Drive from Bandhavgarh. One can get regular flights for Jabalpur & Khajuraho from all major airports of India.
Bandhavgarh can be reached from a number of railway stations near Bandhavgarh-Jabalpur (170 kms), Katni (102 kms), Satna (112 kms) on the central railway and Umaria (35kms) on the southeastern railway.
Approx 6 hrs drive from Khajuraho (280 kms), between 3 and 4 hours from Jabalpur (170 kms), 7 hrs from Kanha (240 kms), Katni 2.5 hrs drive (95 kms), Satna 3.5 hrs drive (112 kms).
Stay / Eat
Where to Stay
Land Survey 26, Umaria,
Madhya Pradesh 484661
Syna Tiger Resort
Bandhavgarh National Park, Umariā,
Madhya Pradesh 484661
Tree House Hideaway Resort
Village Tala, Bandhavgarh,
Near Bandhavgarh Meadows,
Umaria, Madhya Pradesh 484661