The Bandipur National Tiger Reserve was formed in the year 1941. Brought in under the Project Tiger in 1973, it is India’s biggest biosphere reserve known as the Niligiri Biosphere Reserve. It is surrounded by Western Ghat Mountains, and is located in the Mysore – Ooty Highway in Karnataka; touching three recognized parks named as Mudumalai Wildlife Sanctuary in Tamil Nadu, Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary in Kerela and Nagarhole National Park in the North.
Considerably known as one of the most preserved National Parks of India, Bandipur is famous for having sizable numbers of Royal Bengal Tigers. It is also known as the finest habitat of Asian Elephants.
With a moderate climate and diverse geographical features, Bandipur has dry deciduous, evergreen forestland and scrub forest. Intermixed with grassy land and bushes, it is a diverse habitat of many plants and vegetation. River Moyar plays a pivotal role in offering life to the needs of all the residents of the forest. Bandipur is famous for Timber but there are many other flowering plants and trees found here such as Kadam Tree, Indian Gooseberry, Crape Myrtle, Axle-wood, Black Myrobalan, Satinwood and many more.
The Park is a habitat to a variety of animal species. In the Sanctuary, animals move freely from one part of the reserve to another. One can easily spot wild animals such as Tiger, Leopard, Elephant, Indian Gaur, Sambar (deer), Chital, Sloth Bear, Mouse Deer, Wild Dog, Wild Boar, Barking Deer, Giant Squirrel, Four-horned Antelope, Nocturnal Porcupine and Hyena. Apart from these – Panther, Mouse Deer and Osprey are some of the endangered species which are also found here in the Park.
An incredible birding destination, Bandipur National Park is home to over 200 species of avian. To name a few, one can find Grey Jungle Fowl, Pompadour Green Pigeon, Honey Buzzard, Red-headed Vulture, Grey-headed Fish Eagle, Brown Hawk Owl, Bay Owl, Malabar Trogon, Nilgiri Flycatcher, Malabar Pied Hornbill, Little Spider-hunter, Peacock, Plain Flowerpecker, Woolly-necked Stork, Peafowl, Partridge, Quail, Hornbill and Ibis.
There are other residents which can also be seen here such as King Cobra, Python, Adder, Viper, Rat Snake, Water Snake, Marsh Crocodile, Lizard, and the Monitor Lizard among many others. Wide varieties of butterflies are found in plenty here.
Bandipur has a moderate climate throughout the year.
Summers (March to June) are hot due to a temperature ranging from 25 degrees to 35 degrees. The park is closed in the month of March and April for the fear of forest fires.
Monson (July to September) experiences heavy rainfall. Tourist should avoid this time to visit the park as it will be difficult to sight the animals.
Winters (November to February) in Bandipur are extremely pleasant with temperature ranging between 11 degrees to 25 degrees. It is an ideal time to visit the park.
Mysore is located approximately at a distance of 80 kms from the National Park which takes 2 hours. If you are travelling from Bangalore, it will take 5 hours to reach a covering distance of 230 kms.
Additional info –
From Ooty to Bandipur – 50 kms (1 hour 30 minutes)
FromKozhikode to Bandipur – 140 kms (4 hours)
The nearest railway station to Bandipur is Mysore (79 kms), Coimbatore (135 kms) and also Bangalore (230 kms). These cities are well connected to many places in central and western India.
The closest airport to Bandipur is Mysore which is 70 km. Bengaluru Airport is also nearby and has direct flight connectivity to major cities throughout India.
Bengaluru to Delhi – 2 hours and 30 minutes
Bengaluru to Mumbai – 1 hour and 30 minutes
Bengaluru to Chennai – 45 minutes