Everything you need to know about seeing Asiatic lions in the wild

The ground is dry, leaves crackling under the padded paws of the shaggy looking lions hanging around in large prides under shady trees. Cubs and adults rest on the ground for hours and hours per day, and you watch on as they start to notice your arrival.


Only accessible in one national park in the whole world, Asiatic lions aren’t in the usual India wildlife itinerary, but we know the best places to stay in order to see these wonderful animals.


India provides an excellent opportunity to see tigers and lions in the wild in the same itinerary, without crossing any borders.

Expert view: Arabella Worthington

India offers an excellent way of seeing some of Asia’s most intriguing big cats, combining tigers, lions, snow leopards and Indian leopard, in one trip. The best time to see Asiatic lions is from October to June.

The lions in Gir NAtional PArk are the only remaining wild Asiatic lions on the face of the planet. Something not to be missed on your india safari.

the Asiatic lion

Slightly shaggier and smaller than their African cousins the Asiatic lion does share some similarities. They live in family prides often using their numbers to ambush their prey. Males have a large mane of hair on their head which extends down their throats to the front legs and over their backs to the shoulders. The females lack the mane of the males and are slightly smaller making them more agile and better hunters. Lion colouration varies from light buff to yellowish, reddish or brown.


When they are cubs they have rosette spots on their bodies, but as they mature these disappear. Asiatic lions always have a fold of skin running down the length of their stomach, this is rarely seen in African lions.


The Asiatic lion exists as a single, steadily increasing population in India within Sasan Gir National Park.


This subspecies is one of the five big cats found in India, the other four being Bengal tiger, snow leopard, clouded leopard and Indian leopard.

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