Amazing. Magnificent. Beautiful. An Indian Tiger Safari Review

Natural World Safaris

09 Mar 2015

Krishan shah's india trip report

We catch up with Krishan Shah who has just returned from a Natural World Safaris trip to India with his father, travelling back to a destination they love in search of tigers.

What made you choose India?

We’ve been to India many times before and have also been to East Africa on safari, but this trip offered a way to see a new part of the country and some amazing wildlife – we really wanted to see the tigers.

What was the best natural world experience of your trip?

We were very fortunate with the tiger sightings on our drives; in fact overall we saw fantastic wildlife throughout our trip. The parks are truly wonderful and the drives are, on average, around 4 hours. Not only did we enjoy 4 tiger sightings, we saw leopards, jungle cat, sloth, birds, deer and monkeys. Probably the best single experience was a tiger near us in the road for around 30 minutes at Kanha National Park. This part of India is so lush and green – not like other parts of the country we’ve visited. At times, this meant the undergrowth made sightings more challenging but then also more rewarding when they happened.

What was the best activity of your trip?

Other than the game drives of course, it was great just having downtime at the camps in the evening. Good food and drinks around a fire was a perfect end to long but fulfilling days. At Tree House Hideaway they would put on films on a projector which was an ideal way to chill out.

What was your favourite accommodation and why?

All 3 camps were fantastic. The service and staff were genuinely outstanding. Tree House Hideaway in Bandhavgarh National Park and Shergarh Tented Camp in Kanha National Park were probably neck and neck and then Jamtara Wilderness Camp in Pench National Park, a very close third. Shergarh may just make it as our ultimate favourite. Jamtara in Pench was maybe not as luxurious, but the location was incredible as it was on a different side of the park to other camps so we had that area to ourselves. On our last night there was a leopard in the camp – amazing!

Was there an individual from your trip that helped to make it great for you? For example, a guide or naturalist?

All of our guides were exceptional. In all parks they bent over backwards for us, their knowledge was brilliant, they were able to answer any and all questions we had, and they went out of their way to ensure we were in the right place at the right time in order to see tigers and other wildlife. Their passion for their work was obvious and infectious.

Can you sum up India in 3 words?

Amazing. Magnificent. Beautiful.

Who is your natural world hero?

On this trip we were lucky enough to spend time with a naturalist called Raj at Shergarh Camp. While he wasn’t one of our guides, he would have dinner with the guests and his accounts of his life and work in India were incredible. I’m not sure I’ve met a braver (and possibly crazier) person! He’s had more than his fair share of close encounters with elephants, rhinos and tigers. What a fascinating guy.

In terms of a more general Natural World Hero, I admire Eduardo of The Black Jaguar White Tiger Foundation whose mission is to rescue big cats from sad circumstances and provide them with the best lifestyle available. I think his work is inspirational.

What is your ultimate bucket list destination?

Botswana looks incredible. We like the sound of the camps owned by the Jouberts like Zarafa and Duba Plains.

Where next?!

Well, maybe Botswana! We know who to talk to make it happen!

How did you find Natural World Safaris?

It was quite hard to find a good operator for what we wanted to do in India – a tailor-made tiger safari with great accommodation and just an all round trip that was bespoke yet excellent value. Arabella delivered everything we asked for and more – the whole trip was even better than we had expected. We will definitely use NWS again. It was truly one of the best holidays I have ever been on!

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