“If you don’t spot a tiger, it is your fault. You must have sinned badly for sure!” is what we were told by the forest guard. It was just before 3pm, we had just had a wonderful lunch and were out on our first safari in Bandhavagarh.
Our first sighting of wild life was a wild boar followed by a variety of birds and animals but the tiger eluded
us. We did see fresh paw marks of the elusive animal though and returned wondering who amongst us was the great sinner!
Fortunately we had kept one more day for more forays into the forest hence were not totally disappointed and kept our hopes alive for the next safari in the morning scheduled for the next day. We had barely entered the forest when our guide raised his hand and the jeep stopped. He had spotted some frenetic activity in the jungle which indicated the presence of the elusive one. The jeep then inched forward and voila, round the
next turning we saw some jeeps parked and people with their cameras ready to shoot. We joined the gang and waited, with our cameras ready and holding our breaths in excitement of what we were to witness.
And there he strode in from the right! From the thick forest onto the road. Glanced at us nonchalantly and proceeded without another glance to the pond on the left. Wow! Then there was a scramble to get into position to shoot him in the pond but he just drank some water, looked around and started back!
There must have been at least 8 jeeps with 5 tourists in each. Yet, there was pin drop silence and respectful awe at the sight of this magnificent beast!
Was my first sighting of this regal animal. Felt blessed.
For good deals on air travel you can book your Air tickets on Spice Jet and IndigoAirlines to reach Jabalpur which is the nearest airport (173kms) and take a taxi from there to Bandhavgarh.
Umaria is the nearest railhead (68kms) to Bandhavgarh and well connected to all major cities in India.
Bandhavagarh is well connected by State Road Transport buses and plenty of private buses ply too. Private tour service operators arrange deluxe AC and Non AC buses to Bandhavgarh from various cities including Jabalpur (177 km) and Nagpur (370 km).