Nagarhole National Park, famously also called as Rajiv Gandhi National Park, is located 93 km away from the Mysore city. Formerly known as a hunting land by the Mysore rulers, it is spread widely between Kodagu and Mysore district of the state Karnataka. Nagarhole derived its name from the word Naga which means snake and Hole which means Stream. This famous National Park has aplenty of forest cover, little streams, valleys and waterfalls.
Located near Bandipur National Park, this park was set up in the year 1955 and also known to be the best preserved National Park in the India. Bestowed with blessed wildlife and beauty, impeccable scenic view of the lake and forest, this park is abundant with living life.
Incredibly rich with plantation and vegetation, the Park comprises of tropical and deciduous forest land.
Rosewood, Teak, Sandalwood and Silver Oaks trees are found in the majority of the park. The presence of the Deccan Plateau and forests like Pala Indigo make the topography quite lush. Other species of flora such as Crocodile Bark and Axle wood can also be found here among other rich plantations. Extended leg of the River Kabini which lies majorly in the forest provides lifeline to the residents of the Park.
Nagarhole National Park has a dense population of animals which consists of mammals, reptiles, and avifauna. Within every sq. km, one can find varied residents of the forest. Especially during the summers, Asian Elephants can be seen wandering with their herds. Some of the main attractions of the park are Tigers, Niligiri Thar, Nilgiri Langur, Bisons, Leopards, Wild boar, Deer, Dhole (Wild Dog), Sloth Bear, Slender Loris, Male Gaur, Sambar, Chital, Giant Flying Squirrel, and Porcupines. A complete paradise of birding, the Park is home to approx. 300 species of birds. The National Park has canopy trees with height as long as 30 meters, it attracts lots of rarest species of birds in the forest. One can get enchanted with a view of Blue-bearded Bee-eater, Malabar Pied Hornbill,Crested Hawk Eagle, Scarlet Minivet and Malabar Trogan to name a few. The park is also home to many reptiles such as Common Vine Snake, Bamboo Pit Viper, Rat Snake, Russell’s viper, Common Krait and Indian Rock Python besides Marsh Crocodile, Monitor Lizard. Many aquatic and terrestrial animals can also be seen who have found solace here in the park, like tortoises, frogs, toads and tree frogs and a myriad insects, and also including some very beautiful butterflies which adds an extra charm to the living beauty of the jungle here.
Nagarhole has a pleasant weather all-round the year.
Summers (Mar-Apr), the temperature is slightly warm and never exceeds more than 40 degrees.
Monsoons (Jun-Sep) are quite moderate and due to the hot and humid atmosphere, the park remains closed this time.
Winters(Nov-Feb) – The ideal time to visit Nagarhole. This time of the year is very pleasant yet chilly with temperature dropping to a maximum 14 degrees.
The nearest airport to Nagarhole National Park is Mysore (95 km), and one can also reach to Bangalore Airport (220 km).
The Park is well-connected to nearby cities in Karnataka, the closest railway station is Mysore Junction.
By road one can take route of Madikare (90km) or Mysore.