Bandipur Wildlife Sanctuary

General Information
Total Area 874 sq. km.
Best time to visit November - June.
Accommodation Hotel & Restaurants.
Nearest Town Mysore (80 km).
How to get there Train: Mysore (80 km), Air: Mysore (80).
Species found Tiger, Leopard, Elephant, Gaur, Dhole, Chital, Sambar, Slothbear, Four-horned antelope, Langur, Wild boar, Muntjac.

Once the private game reserve of the Mysore maharajas, Bandipur, the large forest (866 sq km) south of the river Kabini is now part of the Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve and one of WWF’s Project Tiger sites. It neighbours the Nagarhole National Park, the Mudumalai National Park in Tamil Nadu and Wynaad in Kerala. All together this area makes for the largest protected forest in India.

Bandipur National Park is a beautiful forest reserve located in the southern Indian state of Karnataka. This national park occupies a special place in India's efforts towards natural conservation. It was created in the 1930s from the local Maharaja Voodiyar. s hunting lands, and named Venugopal Wildlife Park. Bandipur Park was expanded later in 1941 to adjoin the Nagarhole National Park, which lay towards its northern edge, and Wynaad and Madumulai Sanctuaries, which lay towards its southern edge in the states of Kerala and Tamilnadu, respectively. The entire area now constitutes the vast Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve, one of India's most extensive tracts of protected forest. It has been a designated tiger reserve in 1973.

Bandipur has a sizeable population of wildlife - elephant, spotted deer and sambar, gaur and flying squirrel, four horned antelope, Nilgiri langur and sloth bear. Amongst the reserve’s most prominent animals are its 1,900-odd elephants.

The Royal Bengal tiger (75 in the Park) and leopard are even more elusive here than elsewhere because the moister region that they inhabit falls under the protected core area where casual visitors are not allowed. Mostly dry deciduous forest with an abundance of teak on the periphery, the moister core area of Bandipur, has large tracts of fragrant sandalwood and rosewood. However, some summers this area too gets unbearably dry and during these times the animals migrate to the neighbouring wetter Mudumalai Park.

Entry Requirements
All visitors to Bandipur have to get entry permits at the entrance to the park. These cost about Rs 150 (for foreigners) and considerably less for Indians. Additional charges are levied for cameras, vehicles, and elephant or jeep rides.