highlights and main attractions of panna national park

Famous for its diamond industry as well as its wildlife, Panna National Park is home to five species of wild cat, including the King of the Jungle, the Bengal tiger. Panna was once a royal hunting ground, becoming a reserve in 1981, then finally a protected Tiger Reserve in 1994, 22nd in the country and 5th in the state of Madhya Pradesh. Featuring thick teak forests and a diverse landscape of gorges and plateaus down the Ken River, the cleanest waterway in India and life-blood of the park, Panna is known for having some of the best wildlife species in India.

With an area of 543 square kilometres, Panna extends along the River Ken, and features a magnificent topography in the Vindhya Hills, with dry deciduous forests and grasslands. The pristine peacefulness and natural environment means it is an ideal place to appreciate the sheer beauty of India. 

Easily accessed via Khajuraho, it makes a great stopover on your itinerary, bursting with the life of wild waterfalls.

where is panna national park?

wildlife

The five wild cat species include leopard, jungle cat, rusty spotted cat and caracal, as well as the beautiful tigers, although the population of these are sparse. You may spot India’s ‘Big Four’ snakes; spectacled cobra, Russell’s viper, common krait and saw scaled viper, as well as other predators, such as jackals, wild dogs, wolves and hyenas. In the dense thickets, wild boar, striped squirrels and langur monkeys shade themselves, and feasting on the open grasslands you may see spotted chital deer, sambar and nilgai. Along the dense vegetation of the river, long-snouted and marsh crocodiles lay in wait, as well as rock monitors and other reptile species, and there are over 200 bird species listed here; from small species such as bee-eaters and rollers, to eagles, hawks and buzzards. There are also water birds, including fish eagles.

Within the park you can embark on jeep safaris, as well as boat rides down the river to spot water predators. But it is not just the wonderful wildlife that attracts visitors. The beautifully scenic Pandav Falls are worth visiting, as well as Rajgarh Palace, a place of excellent architecture as well as sublimely natural views to the valley below.

Panna National Park is open from October to June, the summer months from March to May are best for wildlife watching, however, the heat at this time can be uncomfortable, soaring to 45 degrees at times. The winters, from December to February, are much cooler and a more pleasant time to travel. We recommend Pashan Garh Lodge, a luxurious spot with jaw dropping views of the nearby watering hole.

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