Kanha National Park, one of the famous of India’s Tiger Reserves, presents excellent opportunities for observing the magnificent tiger in the wild. Kanha, with an area of 1940 sq. km (740 sq. miles), at an altitude of 460 MSL (1500 ft.) is located in a horse shoe shaped valley of Banjar and Halon in Madhya Pradesh. A forest of deciduous hardwood, including sal, are interspersed with stands of bamboo and accented with colourful displays of flowering trees. The valley and plateaus are primarily meadowlands in pleasant contrast to the surrounding lush woodlands. It is these forests that provided inspiration to Rudyard Kipling for his famous novel "Jungle Book".
Part of the Kanha area was declared, in 1879, as a reserved forest and later in 1935 named the Banjar valley sanctuary. In 1955 Kanha was raised to national park status and in 1973 designated a tiger reserve under Project Tiger. The area of land under protection at Kanha has been increased several times with the addition in 1970 of the Mukki valley and in 1974 of the Hallon valley. It has been proved since years that it has the largest number of tigers compared to any other national park in the country. It has also been declared as the best managed national park to protect not only tigers but also other wildlife animals and the life of villagers living inside and around the national park. The park is home to more than 200 tigers and leopards, 350 barasingha (swamp deer) and 22, 000 spotted deer, and more than 300 species of birds.
The park is closed from the beginning of July to the end of October because of the monsoon. There are enough decent accommodation options in Kanha and the scene is getting better every passing day. Apart from the government tourist lodges, rest houses, and log huts, there are private hotels and rest houses for the tourists. There are a number of star category hotels catering to the needs of tourists coming to explore Kanha or interested in exploring the scenic region around.
Kanha National Park Timings
Visitors are only allowed to go on jeep safari at designated times; from sunrise to noon (06:30-10:00) and then from late afternoon to sunset (14:30-18:00).
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