Tiger Safari in India vs Nepal
Nepal is a pioneer in starting wildlife safaris in the Indian subcontinent. They also must get credit for introducing one of the most exciting ways to explore the dense national parks on Elephant back. This was popularly known as a tiger show and came into practice in India as well slightly later. To compare tiger safari in India vs Nepal is an unequal comparison. The parks are different, but the adrenaline rush while on tiger safaris in India and Nepal is the same.
In 1964 when Royal Chitwan National Park, now Chitwan National Park, used to be a hunting park for Rajas and Maharajas. At that time Jim Edwards built Tiger Tops in the heart of the Jungle to showcase the rich bio-diversity of Nepal and to promote it as a wildlife destination. Rather quickly it made a mark globally, and nature lovers got another wilderness haven to explore apart from Africa. The conservationists in India, Sri Lanka, and Bhutan learned quickly and initiated a similar concept in their respective countries. Fast forward to 2022, there are several world-renowned wildlife hotspots in India, Nepal, and Sri Lanka.
Both India and Nepal have their own charm as far as Tiger Safari is concerned. The high mountains of Nepal are home to some of the rarest mammals of our planet. The dense vegetation of the Terai region in Nepal like Chitwan National Park, Bardia National park, and Parsha Wildlife Reserve are strongholds of big mammals like tiger, elephant, and one-horned rhinoceros. Asiatic water buffalo is also a star attraction while on a Tiger Safari in Nepal. Despite being a small country Nepal has 185 species of mammals and has recorded around 915 species of avifauna.
Due to increased tiger population, density, and thus sightings, the Tiger Safaris in India has become the flag bearer of Indian Wildlife worldwide. Tiger had adapted to the Indian landscape like fish to water. From the foothills of the Himalayas in the North of India to the western ghats in the south, the Aravalis and Vindhayanchal of highlands of central India, from the swampy mangroves of the Sundarbans to the scrub jungles of the west, it is the Tiger Habitat. India has some popular National Parks like Corbett National Park, Ranthambhore National Park, Kanha National Park, Bandhavgarh National Park, Tadoba National Park, and Bandipur National Park which are world-renowned for the Tiger Safari in India. Being about 22 times bigger than Nepal, India has 410 species of mammals with more than 1300 species of avifauna.
Tiger Population in Nepal and India
The government of Nepal declared on National Conservation Day that the country now has an estimated 235 wild tigers, up from a baseline of roughly 121 in 2009. Since the St Petersburg Tiger Summit in 2010, where Tiger x 2 or Tx2 – the ambitious goal of doubling the world’s wild tigers – was set, Nepal is the first country on track to double its national tiger population. Chitwan National Park and Bardia National Park have the maximum number of Tigers in Nepal.
India on the other hand increased its tiger population from 1411 to over 3000 years in the last 14 years. In 1947, the number of tigers was estimated to be at 40,000. Their population was endangered by hunting and habitat loss. Only 1,827 tigers were found in the first-ever all-India tiger census, performed in 1972. As per the last census 2018-2019 over half of the 2,967 tigers found were in Madhya Pradesh and Karnataka.
Top National Parks in Nepal and India
Each park of Nepal and India has its own beauty. Chitwan National park with Narayani and Rapti flowing cutting through the National Parks makes it one of the most beautiful parks in the world. Similarly in Bardia National Park, the Babai river flows through the park and river Karnali acts as the western border of the park. And also in other parks, there are several streams flowing through the park throughout the year. These perennial rivers have made these places some of the most fertile lands on the planet. Dense vegetation with plenty of food has made these places very rich in wildlife diversity. Having a high density of herbivores has also given the rise of a very good number of Tigers, Leopards and other predators.
Top five National Parks for Tiger Safari in Nepal are:
|Sl No||National Park||Tiger Population||Tiger Sightings|
|01||Chitwan National Park||93||High|
|02||Bardia National Park||87||High|
|03||Banke National Park||21||Moderate|
|04||Parsa National Park||18||Moderate|
|05||Suklaphanta National Park||8||Low|
The evergreen forest of the Himalayas in the North to North-Eastern India and the Western Ghats in South-West India holds the highest diversity of flora and fauna. To see the diversity of Indian wildlife along with Tiger, the National Parks in these regions are the best place for Tiger Safari in India. The long monsoon from mid-June to mid-October in India is a blessing for the wildlife in India. The Aravali hills, the Satpura hills, The Deccan Plateau, and the delta region of Sundarban all hold a good number of Tiger population in India.
The top Five National Parks for Tiger Safari in India are:
|Sl No||National Park||Tiger Population||Tiger Sightings|
|01||Bandhavgarh National park||104||Very High|
|02||Kanha National Park||88||Very Good|
|03||Jim Corbett National Park||231||Very Good|
|04||Ranthambhore National Park||53||Very High|
|05||Tadoba National Park||83||High|
Explore our top Tiger Safari Tours in India here.
National Park Rules
To keep the wildlife undisturbed and enable the visitors to enjoy the wildlife viewing every national Parks around the world has certain rules. Some of the rules in Nepal and India are similar and some are different. Some of similarities and dissimilarities in Nepal and India are below
|Tiger Safari in Nepal||Tiger Safari in India|
|Morning and afternoon safaris inside the park||Morning and afternoon safaris inside the park|
|Full-day safari is available in all the National Parks||Full-day safari is available in most of the National Parks|
|The Local Guide is mandatory||The Local Guide is Mandatory|
|Guests are allowed to get down in some of the Machan area to see the grasslands and the wildlife||Guests are not allowed to get down anywhere except for the forest patrolling camps|
|Walking safaris are available inside the core zone||Walking safari is not allowed inside the park zone|
|Safaris are booked offline at the Gate||Safaris are booked online, and few will be offline on tatkal basis|
|Elephant Safaris are available at the buffer zone of the National Park of Terai region||Elephant Safaris are available only on a full-day permit for an hour at an extra cost in some of the National Parks.|
|Tiger Safari in Nepal stays open from October to June and closes for three months of monsoon.||Tiger safari in India also closes for three months during monsoon except for national parks in the Southern part of India. However, every week in the afternoon the park remains closed for safaris in some states, like in Madhya Pradesh, Wednesday afternoon park remains closed and in Maharashtra Tuesday afternoon the park remains closed.|
|During Tiger Safari in Nepal, they can accommodate a maximum of 09 guests in a modified Mahindra pick-up or similar vehicle.||During Tiger Safari in India, only 06 guests are allowed in a gypsy with a guide and driver. And in the cantor as per the sitting capacity mostly 17.|
|Safari permit can be booked on the day of the excursion||Safari permit booking opens months prior to the excursion like in Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra opens 120 days prior, Ranthambhore a year before, and same guest to other national parks in India. Getting a permit on the day of the safari is very difficult.|
Cultural Places to Visit
Nepal has a diverse range of fauna and natural beauty, as well as a rich cultural past. Awe-inspiring mountains, woods, and huge, open plains frame towns and cities brimming with towering temples and palaces, making it one of the world’s most scenic and fascinating countries to visit. Some of the most visit places in Nepal along with Wildlife are:
- Kathmandu Valley – Kathmandu, Nepal’s capital, is located in a valley that is home to seven Unesco World Heritage sites, including Kathmandu Durbar Square, Swyambunath Stupa (also known as the Monkey Temple), and Pashupatinath Temple, Kathmandu’s oldest Hindu temple. Meanwhile, the surrounding city of Bhaktapur is home to a plethora of historical artworks and carvings made of wood, stone, and metal, as well as numerous ancient temples and traditional homes. Visit the hilltop village of Nagarkot for panoramic views of the valley.
- Pokhara – Nepal’s second-largest city, Pokhara is arguably one of the country’s most beautiful places. The scenery here abruptly shifts from green hills to snow-capped mountains, providing stunning views. This area, dubbed the “Jewel in the Himalaya,” is equally suited to those who want to relax as well as those looking for adrenaline-pumping outdoor sports like white-water rafting and paragliding. Rent a rowboat on the lake, proceed to the Barahi Temple, and see the World Peace Pagoda, a dome-shaped stupa placed on a hilltop with panoramic views of the area.
- Lumbini – Although the exact location of the Buddha’s birth has long been a source of discussion and speculation, Lumbini, near the Indian border, is largely considered as the most likely birthplace of the Lord Buddha, also known as “the Tathagata.” The Ashoka Pillar, which was built in 249 BC and found in 1896, is the most important source of evidence for the site’s validity as the Buddha’s birthplace. It attests to this region’s status as the birthplace of Buddha. Lumbini is now home to the Lumbini Peace Park, which spans 3 miles (4.8 kilometers) and is considered one of the world’s holiest and most sacred sites, with Buddhist monasteries and temples built by 25 countries.
There are many other places where you can visit in Nepal. Some of the other places are like Mustang, Ghandruk, Janakpur, Langtang and many more.
India has been ruled by different emperors, over the centuries there were several dynasties and each of them has left an indelible imprint on the land and now India showcases those imprints as its ornaments thus making it the most travelled cultural destinations in the world. Some of the most visited cultural destinations are:
- New Delhi – New Delhi’s charm is amazing. It is our country’s capital and the heart of every foodie. It has a little bit of something for everyone. It crams everything in, from millennial culture to centuries of history, into a little space. Jantar Mantar, Akshardham, Qutub Minar, India Gate, Jama Masjid, Humayun’s Tomb, and many other attractions in New Delhi are worth seeing.
- Jaipur – When you think about Rajasthan, your mind conjures up images of valorous sagas, self-esteem before life, and opulent palaces. Jaipur is the same city of the same. In this sandy state, no journey is complete without the colour pink. It won’t surprise you if you fall in love with Jaipur, the capital city, which is steeped in heritage and spectacular architecture with pink lattice windows, gorgeous and time worn forts, and bazaars lighted like the spectrum of light.
- The Taj Mahal – Taj Mahal was characterised by Rudyard Kipling as the “embodiment of everything pure.” Every year, more than twice the population of Agra passes through its gates in search of a once-in-a-lifetime view of one of the world’s seven wonders. As a result, a day trip to see this 500-year-old landmark is highly recommended. The closest National Parks to the place are Corbett and Ranthambore.
- Varanasi – Varanasi is one of the world’s oldest continually inhabited cities. The first Aryan settlement in the middle Ganges valley is its early history. Varanasi was a seat of Aryan religion and philosophy by the 2nd millennium BCE, as well as a commercial and industrial centre known for its muslin and silk fabrics, fragrances, ivory works, and sculpture. Manikarna Ghat, Assi Ghat, Viswanath Temple, Banaras Hindu University are the main attractions of the place. The evenings are the time to see its real beauty when Diya gets lit up everywhere in the temple and the ghats.
Apart from these four cultural destinations, India has flourished with the cultures and different architecture of centuries in all the states. Some other places you can visit during the Tiger Safari in India are Khajuraho, Udaipur, Orcha, Elora caves, Amritsar, Kolkata – the city of Joy and many more.