Reliving The Jungle book at Kanha National Park

At 6.30 am, the jungles of Kanha were buzzing with activity. Sunlight rose steadily, filtering itself through the tall Sal trees and diverged in all possible directions.

sunrise at Kanha National park. 1

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Dusty, serpentine paths had roaring jeeps traversing on them in search of anything remotely similar to the majestic orange and black coat.

 

Kanha National park sunrise 4

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Our guide keeps stopping intermittently, showing us fresh pug marks and there is an excited murmur in the group.

I am taken back to my first encounter with the big cat in Ranthambore. The excitement pre the sighting, constantly looking into the foliage and the frenzy when you spot one.

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In search of the wild cat

But the jungle offers so much more that often goes unnoticed in this chase of orange and black.

While most looked out for the tiger, I felt the jungle.

forests at Kanha National park
Jungle hues
Kanha National park panorama
The Panoramic view of the Kanha jungle

The parakeets soaring high and settling on the topmost branches, the perfectly asymmetrical shapes of thin trees scattered in the Kanha meadows, the rhythmic sounds of the tiny brook flowing over rocks punctuated by the chorus of the birds.

Kanha National park trees

 

 

The serpentine paths of the Jungle:

 

My hands were frozen in the cold and the sun was more than welcome now. It reached almost every part of the jungle, illuminating it.

The grasslands turned golden , the trees shone, water bodies gleamed and leaves changed their colours: from dark green to light to yellow infused.

 

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illuminated meadows

 

As we rode in the heart of the jungle, spotted deer sprinted in the grasslands and barasingha trotted with his decorated headgear.

The calls of alert sent out by langurs and the sambhar deer sent ripples of excitement across the jeeps. While the tiger prowled in 7 feet high foliage, countless eyes waited. Some gave up and move ahead, some waited.

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The endless wait

We charged ahead on the roller coaster tracks and as I sat looking at the foliage, two eyes appeared. I thought I was hallucinating. Then the head ( I frantically adjusted my camera controls) and then the body.

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Bajrang makes an entry

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Memories of spotting Noor in Ranthambore came flooding back. Bajrang stood for a while and then turned looking straight into my eye as if asking “Looking out for me?”

Kanha Bajrang
Looking out for me?

The muscular , full grown Bajrang walked without a care, crossed the road and entered the foliage, followed by many disappointed sighs in our canter.
My gut says our hero will cross the road again. And VOILA! It did.

A reappearance
A reappearance

Not once but thrice! Then slowly it trudged along the path walking alone and disappearing, straight out of a scene in Jungle Book.

 

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The farewell walk

The guide had struck the big T from his list and with a huge grin he began seeing photos that others clicked, like the safari had achieved its very motto of being in the park.

But I was unsatiated. For me, even breathing the forest air only if it is just for a couple of hours is truly fulfilling.

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The forest fragrances soothen my senses and have a relaxing and calming effect , nature’s own aromatherapy. And when nature gets tired of playing its own playlist, the silence is breathtaking too.

Kanha National park. sunset

As the canter rides out of the park, I envy the pair of Collared scope owls, huddled in a tree hole( the home I always longed for!)

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A pair of Collared scope Owls

Kanha, you weaved magic and it is impossible to not fall in love with you.

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HOW TO REACH:

Kanha is 176 Kms from Jabalpur, 270 Kms from Nagpur and 350 Kms from Raipur.

If you intend to visit Pench as well, it is recommended to reach Nagpur and visit Pench first and proceed to Kanha.

WHERE TO STAY:

The Club Mahindra Kanha resort is rustic with a rural setting but modern amenities. 

 

With blocks named after trees and an organic farm it is close to the park and provides simple, earthy joys of appreciating nature.

Here’s how:

Pottery: While it seems very easy, moulding your own clay pot is no child’s play. Was awestruck at how skilful our local artisans are in moulding clay into various shapes. When you actually do it, you end up appreciating their efforts a lot more.

Baiga Tribes: One country and so much diversity. I had heard about the Gond tribes but never about the Baiga tribes of Mandla. Thanks to Club Mahindra Kanha, I could interact with these locals and get a glimpse into their songs, dances and vibrant costumes!

 

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Baiga Tribes , Mandla

Organic farm: The farm hopper in me jumped in delight seeing the organic farm in the Club Mahindra property. The farm had fresh produce of a variety of  vegetables: from leeks to tomatoes,  green brinjals to red chillies!

Was heartening to see that in an age where modern cuisines are replacing traditional palettes, Club Mahindra strived to stick to the roots.

Quirky Decor:  Vibrant and unconventional decor automatically make me click. The interiors of the resort have a perfect blend of modern and traditional decor with a vintage feel. While the lobby has an old world charm, the restaurant has colourful cutlery and brass teapots and the likes.

 

Modern Amenities: Though the resort has a rustic charm, the amenities are modern and plush. The resort has a state of the art Gym, a pool, play area for kids, a Spa, a conference room and a theatre.

A heartfelt thank you to Mr. Nandan, Prakash, Nadeem, Binkatesh and the entire staff of Club Mahindra,  Kanha for making my stay a fabulous one.

Disclaimer: My stay in Kanha was sponsored by Club Mahindra. However all the pictures, opinions and the gasps on seeing the tiger are mine!

 

70 thoughts on “Reliving The Jungle book at Kanha National Park

  1. gosh, looking at your photos and it’s like I am there… your story leads me just like that path meanders in the jungle 🙂 beautiful and riveting, Divsi!!
    and that tiger… The Jungle Book indeed 🙂

  2. Thrilling account Divsi. I have visited many tiger reserves but somehow missed Kanha. It was a virtual trip with this post. Heard a lot about Bajrang. He really looked very fascinating and his eyes glued to your camera- what a moment it would have been.

  3. Your post I am sure does full justice to the rustic beauty and rugged terrains of Kanha. What a majestic presence Bajrang has! The meadows, the forests, the sun and shadows all captured so brilliantly, reflect how enrapturing it must all have been. Loved the quaint decor of the resort, the vibrant tribals and I imagine it’s an experience that will be etched in your memory forever! Thanks for sharing this beautiful experience with us 🙂

  4. Bajrang sure knows how to treat his guests in his territory! What a lovely post Divsi 🙂 Looks like your year has been off to a magical start!

  5. The pictures of the forests is so rejuvenating! Loved your narration of how Bajrang appearing out from his cave and crossing the road is so thrilling! He knows how to put up a good show…:)

  6. Lovely clicks…. This surely looks like a must visit place. I am yet to explore the wildlife of India… The closest I have been is to a bird sanctuary. But this is surely wild and your images speak volumes .

  7. I adore Kanha !! Pench and KAnha are my fav jungles in India and you’re pictures just make it come alive! I can’t wait to revisit and how lucky you were to have such terrific tiger sightings!

  8. I saw the pictures of Bajrang aka Sher Khan 😉 on your FB prof. and believe me, I seriously found the facial expressions of Bajrang very innocent. 😀
    Well, it must be such a wonderful sight to witness the tiger from up so close. Also, the write-up and jungle pics virtually transported me to the place itself. Fab post and pictures, Divyakshi! 🙂

    1. Okay, so I have company! 🙂 I found him cute too 😀 It is an out of the world experience Saumy. The whole build up, the chase, the actual sighting! Too thrilling 🙂 Thanks so much for appreciating the post 🙂

  9. I have not been to India yet but reading this was very inspiring. Especially for the title because the Jungle Book was a classic growing up. After seeing the newest video and now reading this I can see how you “felt the jungle”. I have been wanting to go on a safari for some time now! Great pictures…those sunsets are awesome!

  10. This national park looks truly magnificent! It’s really interesting that you got to experience pottery and interact with the Baiga Tribes, too 🙂 I really do look forward to visiting this place soon 🙂

  11. Wow! This looks gorgeous and definitely reliving the jungle book! This would be such a cool place to spot animals too. I am definitely an animal lover!

  12. What an amazing experience you had over there! This is the life, seeing the nature, wildlife in their real habitat and wowww, a tiger just in front of you, JUST MY DREAM; I will have my chance one day!! Thanks for sharing, anyway you took great pictures around 😀

  13. That sounds like an amazing experience. The combination of the photos and your words was stunning. And I completely see why you thought it was like the Jungle Book. He looks just like Shere Khan!

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