Trip Reports

India Tiger Safari Trip Report

By Sarah E. Devlin

 

For many India can be a huge culture shock.  There is nothing like being dropped smack dab in the middle of a new and different environment to get the creative juices flowing.  For me, I found the colors, the people, the architecture, the rich textiles, the beautiful landscape, and the abundance of exotic wildlife to be incredibly inspiring.

 

We were so fortunate to have Anu Marwah, an acclaimed photographer and guide leading our adventure.  Anu is a native of India and we all felt safe and secure in her hands as she knows the landscape of India so well that we just knew she would take good care of us and get us the photographic opportunities we were looking for.

 

We started our journey at Kaziranga National park where we spent five days exploring. On our very first day this Rhesus Macaque greeted us as we entered the park.

  

Kaziranga National Park is a renowned national park located in the northeastern state of Assam, India. It was established in 1905 as a reserve forest and was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1985 due to its exceptional natural beauty and unique biodiversity.  Here we had ample opportunity to see and photograph the one horned rhinoceros, an endangered species native to the Indian subcontinent.  Thanks to their fierce conservation efforts, Kaziranga National Park houses about two thirds of the world’s population of this species.

I think we were all surprised at the  large diversity of birds in the park, including owls! This was heaven for a bird nerd like me. 

We also had our very first Tiger sighting at Kaziranga, although far away, it was a good omen for what was to come.

We then travelled on to Bandhavgarh National Park.  Bandhavgarh is a renowned wildlife sanctuary located in the Umaria district of Madhya Pradesh, India. It is one of the most popular tiger reserves in the country, known for its high density of Bengal tigers. While Kaziranga gave us a variety of wildlife to photograph, Banhavgarh was all about the Tigers, and there were plenty.  I think everyone in our group would agree that our best Tiger encounter was on our second day in the park.  We came across a sub-adult male that after following for a bit, eventually lay down in some tall grass and took a long rest.  We waited close to two hours for the Tiger to move out into the open when a herd of Sambar Deer came through.  We watched as the Tiger began stalking the deer and eventually waged an attack, unfortunately for the Tiger the attack was unsuccessful.  We did learn later that this Tiger was still being fed by its mother, so perhaps this was just a little practice.

Bandhavgarh exceeded our expectations with Tiger sightings, we witnessed Tigers hunting, Tigers running, Tigers leaping, Tigers sleeping, Tigers in water, Tigers up close, Tigers far away, just about every scenario you can imagine.  Couple that with a fun group of women sharing their passion and you really couldn’t ask for anything more.

 

Anu Marwah will once again be leading a Tiger Safari in India in February 2025.  If you’ve ever dreamt of photographing Tigers, this is the safari to join.  I hope to make it back to India before 2025.  I left feeling like there was so much more that I wanted to capture with my camera.

2025 Tiger Safari

 

2 thoughts on “India Tiger Safari Trip Report

  1. Denise Vouri says:

    What a fantastic photo expedition! Your photos are fabulous and it’s good to learn that the group was treated to many tiger sightings in addition to other animal and avian species. Do you spend any time in a city or villages? Is there an add-on to visit other areas? I’ve been to Southern India and Rajastan as well as the Taj, but I’d like to experience more of the northern region.

    1. admin says:

      Thank you, Denise! Next year there is an add on to the Tiger Safari called Leopards and Shepherds. We will be traveling to the beautiful city of Udaipur and spending a couple days there before we move on to Jawai to photograph leopards and the shepherds that live harmoniously with them. Also, many choose to arrive in Delhi a day or two early before beginning safari, this year we did take a tour of Delhi and visited some temples and markets. Please let me know if you have any questions about the 2025 Tiger Safari or the Leopards and Shepherds tour.

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