Tadoba National Park: One of the Oldest and Largest Tiger Reserve

Tiger in Tadoba National Park

Tadoba National Park, Maharashtra, India.

Tadoba National Park is one of the largest and oldest Tiger Reserve in Maharashtra State, India. It is situated in Chandrapur District and also known as Tadoba Andhari Tiger Project.

The name “Tadoba” is the name of the God “Tadoba” or “Taru”, praised by the tribal people who live in the dense forests of the Tadoba and Andhari region, while the Andhari river that meanders through the forest gives the ‘Andhari’ name. Legend holds that Taru was a village chief who was killed in a mythological encounter with a tiger. A shrine dedicated to the God Taru now exists beneath a huge tree, on the banks of the Tadoba Lake. The temple is frequented by Adivasis, especially during the fair held every year in the Hindu month of Pausha, between December and January. Hunting was completely banned in 1935.

Tadoba National Park Map

Two decades later, in 1955, 116.54 km2 (45.00 sq mi) was declared as a National Park. Tadoba Andhari Reserve is the largest national park in Maharashtra. The total area of the reserve is 1727 km². This includes Tadoba National Park, created in 1955.

There are 41,644 people living in and around the reserve in 59 villages of which 5 are inside the core zone. These villages in the core zone still do the farming activity inside the core area. The process of rehabilitation is going on but the Indian bureaucracy has been at its slowest in the forest department. Recently the Navegaon village was rehabilitated and grassland is expected on the place where the village existed. There are 41,820 cattle with the villagers in the core and buffer zone.🐾

🌲Nature in Tadoba:

Trees:

Tadoba reserve is a predominantly southern tropical dry deciduous forest with dense woodlands comprising about 87 percent of the protected area. Teak is the predominant tree species. Other deciduous trees include ain (crocodile bark), bija, dhauda, hald, salai, semal and tendu. Beheda, hirda, karaya gum, mahua madhuca (crepe myrtle) and Lannea coromandelica (wodier tree) are other common species. Axlewood (Anogeissus latifolia) is a fire-resistant species growing here. Palas or flame of the forest (Butea monosperma) adds vibrant color to the forest. Black plum trees grow in the riparian habitat around the lake.

At the waterhole at Panchadhara, huge Arjun trees can be seen. Patches of grasses are found throughout the reserve. Bamboo thickets grow throughout the reserve. The climber kach kujali (velvet bean) found here is a medicinal plant used to treat Parkinson’s disease. The leaves of bheria are used as an insect repellent and bija is a medicinal gum. Beheda is also an important medicine found here.🌲

leoprad-in-tadoba national park

Animals:

Aside from the keystone species, the Bengal tiger, Tadoba Tiger Reserve is home of Indian leopards, sloth bears, gaur, nilgai, striped hyena, small Indian civet, jungle cats, sambar, barking deer. Tadoba lake sustains the marsh crocodile. Reptiles here include the endangered Indian python and the common Indian monitor.

Terrapins, Indian star tortoise, Indian cobra and Russel’s viper also live in Tadoba. The lake is an ornithologist’s paradise with a wide diversity of water birds and raptors. 195 species of birds have been recorded, including three endangered species.🐅

😍Attractions: Jungle JEEP Safari.

Safari Timing Chart:

Open top ‘Gypsy’ or Jeep is available for the safari in Tadoba National Park. Private vehicles are also allowed, however you have to take the permission and the forest guide with you. The safari timings in Tadoba Tiger Reserve:

Morning Jeep Safari Timings: 6.00 a.m to 10.00 a.m. (entry allowed until 8.00 a.m.)

Afternoon Jeep Safari Timings: 3.00 p.m. until 6.00 p.m (entry allowed until 4.30 p.m.)

Best Time to Visit Tadoba National Park:

The tropical climate makes winter season the best time to visit Tadoba National Park. However, the best season to sight tigers is the summer (April to May). Post monsoon is also a good time to visit Tadoba Wildlife Sanctuary when the jungle becomes lush green and is filled with flowers.

➤ How to Reach Tadoba National Park?

Jeep Safari in Tadoba National Park

By Airplane ✈ The nearest International Airport is Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar International Airport, Nagpur (140 km via Umrer, Bhisi, and Chimur).

By Railway 🚂 The nearest railway station is Chandrapur (on the Delhi-Chennai main line) 45 km away.

By Bus 🚌 The nearest main bus stand is Chandrapur and Chimur (32 km).

➤Accommodations:

IRAI Safari Retreat, Royal Tiger Resort, Serai Tiger Camp are one of the best 5-star luxury wildlife & tiger camp resorts in Tadoba. You can also stay at hotels in Chandrapur which is 35 KM from the Reserve area.🏨

For the least expensive hotels, Moharli, Maharastra Tourism Development Corporation hotel and the Forest Development Corporation of Maharashtra guesthouse and dormitory can be good choices. Eco huts offered by the Forest Development Corporation of Maharashtra are an excellent choice for those who are looking for budget accommodation in Tadoba National Park. For a stay amongst nature, you should book yourself at Tiger Trails Jungle Eco Lodge at Khutwanda gate.

Nearby Places:

Tadoba National Park is surrounded by many beautiful places and temples. Some of the popular places near Tadoba are Tadoba Lake, Shiv Mandir, Sankatmochan Hanuman Mandir, and Urjanagar Lake, Durga Maa Temple, St. Michael Church and Ayyappa Temple.

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