Western Ghats Rare & Endemic Wildlife Tour
March 24, 2022 - April 9, 2022£830 – £3895
Be surrounded by a pack of dhole whilst on a jeep safari or crane your neck to find the rare lion-tailed macaque on a trek or spot elephants silently wondering through the jungle from a boat or walk in Mowglis footsteps through the towering trees of the Western Ghats. Our exploration of southern India will showcase one of the top 10 areas of biodiversity in the world!
Up to 10 jeep safaris
Get closer to nature on elephant back
Walk into 5 National Parks
Trek Eravikalum to find Nilgiri tahr
Cruise the lakes of Periyar
Expert local birding guides
Top Animals on Tour
Tour Dates: 24/03/2022 – 09/04/2022
Duration: 16 nights
Type / Focus: Endemic Species
Arrival at Bengaluru (Bangalore) International Airport. On arrival you will be met by your professional zoologist escort and our Indian guide/driver. After a short transfer to the hotel we will have dinner and spend the night in one of the following hotels in Bengaluru -level 3*- (Hotel 37th Crescent Bengaluru / Hotel AJ International / Casa de Bengaluru) depending on availability. Bengaluru is the technological hotspot in India and a city which is moving quickly into the 21st Century, as a result the contrast in modern and traditional India is a great mix to see.
Bandipur National Park
After breakfast at our hotel we will travel to Bandipur NP (5 hours) in our private vehicle. After checking into the accommodation and lunch, if time permits we will head out on a jeep safari. Bandipur NP is a Tiger Reserve and most famous for its large Asiatic elephant population (>3000 in 1997) as well high numbers of tigers, leopards, dhole and sloth bears. Elephants, guar, dhole and leopards are seen regularly along with chital, sambar, langur and Indian muntjac. The bird life here is also exceptional. On our return we will eat our evening meal back at the accommodation which will be one of the following -level wildlife lodge – (Cicada Wildlife Resort / Bandipur Jungle Lodge / Bandipur Safari Lodge) depending on availability.
Bandipur National Park
In the morning we will enter Bandipur NP in a jeep hoping to come across a pack of dhole or a tiger on their morning patrol. Breakfast will be at the accommodation. After lunch we will head out again in a jeep into Bandipur NP. Aiming to find the rare mammals and birds including Asiatic elephants, dhole, sloth bears, guar, pompadour green pigeons, bay owls and Malabar pied hornbills. There will be the option for a guided walk from our accommodation as well. On our return we will eat our evening meal back at the accommodation which will be one of the following – level wildlife lodge – (Cicada Wildlife Resort / Bandipur Jungle Lodge / Bandipur Safari Lodge) depending on availability.
Nagarhole National Park
Weather permitting we will rise early and have a guided walk into Bandipur NP. Breakfast will be back at the accommodation. On this walk we may get up close and personal to some of the most breathtaking animals in the world such as tigers, leopards, Asiatic elephants and Sloth bears; however these are rarely encountered on foot and we will focus our attention on the smaller animals such as birds, reptiles and amphibians whilst keeping a keen eye out for endemic monkeys like Nilgiri Langurs in the tree tops. After the walk we will be transferred in our private vehicle to Nagarhole NP (2.5 / 3 hours); once we are checked in and have had lunch we will have a jeep safari into Nagarhole NP. Nagarhole NP is one of the best places in the world to spot dhole and guar (the largest species of cow in the world). There are also Asiatic elephants, tigers, sloth bears, lion-tailed macaques and mouse deer. On our return from the jeep safari we will head back to the accommodation – level wildlife lodge – (Cicada Kabini / Kabini River Lodge / The Kings Sanctuary) for our evening meal.
Nagarhole National Park
In the morning we will use a jeep to enter Nagarhole NP, to try and find more rare mammals and birds. Breakfast and lunch will be back at the accommodation. In the afternoon we will either go back into the park on another jeep safari or use one of the park elephants and a local Mahout (elephant driver) to try and find more animals. Elephant back safaris allow us to get much closer to animals as elephants are natural part of the ecosystem and most animals ignore them completely, leaving us with brilliant photo opportunities and to view intimate behaviours at close quarters. Our evening meal will be back at the accommodation, level wildlife lodge – (Cicada Kabini / Kabini River Lodge / The Kings Sanctuary).
Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary
Depending on the weather and local road conditions we will either go back into Nagarhole NP in a jeep or we will drive straight to our next destination. The drive will be in our private vehicle and once we get to Wayanad WS (3 / 3.5 hours) we will check into the accommodation, then we will either spend the rest of the day at leisure or enter Wayanad WS on a jeep to find the animals which include Asiatic elephants, tigers, leopards, jungle cats, palm civets, dhole and guar as well as vast diversity of snakes and lizards. We are now well and truly in the Western Ghats and one of the top 10 biodiversity hot spots and a very important area in world conservation. Our lunch and evening meal will be at our accommodation, level – 3* – (Hotel Vythiri Resort / Rain County Resorts).
Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary
This morning we will go on a jeep safari to try and find the particular aggressive elephants in this park (local superstition tells of the elephants here being more bad tempered than in other south Indian park); of course keeping a good distance! Breakfast and lunch will be back at the accommodation. In the afternoon we will spend time searching for the endemic bird species in Wayanad WS such as Wayanad laughingthrushes, Malabar grey hornbills and crimson-backed sunbirds. Our evening meal will be back at the accommodation, level – 3* – (Hotel Vythiri Resort / Rain County Resorts).
Parambikulam National Park or Palakkad
For the next couple of days we have two options open to us, depending on the local conditions. At this time of year there are controlled forest fires in Silent Valley National Park (the best place in the world for lion-tailed macaques) and as a result the park maybe closed. If this is the case we will drive in our private vehicle direct to our accommodation in Parambikulam National Park, level – Wildlife cottage – (Parambikulam Cottage)( 6-7 hours). The rest of the day will be at your leisure (around the accommodation there is some brilliant birding if your interested). If Silent Valley NP and the surrounding areas are safe to visit we will start the day with a guided trek inside Wayanad WS, before heading out to Palakkad (5 hours) and checking into our accommodation, level – guest house (Kandath Tharavad). The rest of the day is for you to have at your leisure. Our evening meal will be at our accommodation.
Parambikulam National Park or Palakkad
Depending on where we are we will either spend the day at Parambikulam National Park (this park is best known for the Nilgiri langur, lion-tailed macaques and sloth bears), where after breakfast we will spend the day with birding, trekking, a jeep safari, bamboo rafting and other activities before heading back to the accommodation (Parambikulam Cottage) or if we are in Palakkad we will spend the day with a trip Silent Valley National Park or another nearby forested area (to find the very rare endemic lion-tailed macaques) or with a trip to Parambikulam NP and have a guided trek through the park. Before heading back to the accommodation, level – guest house (Kandath Tharavad) for our evening meal.
Once again today our day is dependent on where we are. If we are in Parambikulam National Park we will rise early and head out on a morning walk which will focus on the endemic birds such as grey jungle fowl, white-bellied blue flycatchers and white-bellied treepies; before having breakfast at the accommodation and getting ready to leave for Munnar (4.5 hours). If we are staying in Palakkad we will have a leisurely breakfast before our private transfer to Munnar (6 hours). Once we arrive in Munnar the rest of the day and evening is at your leisure (if time permits we can do some sightseeing in and around Munnar). Our evening meal will be at our accommodation, level – 3 / 4* (Tea Valley Resort / Fort Munnar Hill Station Luxury Resort).
After our breakfast we will have a day spent walking around Munnar and the surrounding area as well as trekking into Eravikulam National Park. This national park is home to the very very rare and endemic Nilgiri tahr. This rare highland goat is a treat to see and we have a good chance of spotting some today. In and around Munnar, Eravikulam and Chinar NP the birding is exceptional including yellow-throated bulbuls, blue-faced molkohas, Nilgiri pipits, Nilgiri pigeons and black and orange flycatchers. Other animals we may see in Eravikulam NP are short-claws otters, Nilgiri martens, dusky-striped squirrels and ruddy mongooses. Our evening meal will be back at the accommodation, level – 3 / 4* (Tea Valley Resort / Fort Munnar Hill Station Luxary Resort).
Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary
After breakfast we will have our private transfer to Periyar WS (3.5 / 4 hours). Periyar WS is one of the largest and most famous in southern India. It is famous for being nestled in the middle of spice and rubber plantations and for its vast array of animal life; including 62 species of mammal, 320 species of birds, 45 species of reptiles, 27 species of amphibians and 38 species of fish! We will try and find some specific animals here over the next couple of days. Once we get to Periyar WS we will have a boat ride on Periyar lake and possibly an elephant back ride as well. On the lake we will hopefully find short-clawed otters, black bazas, woolly-necked storks and possibly the two freshwater turtles species. We will head back our accommodation, level – 3 /4* (Hotel Treetop / Muthoot Cardamom Country) for our evening meal.
Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary
We will either rise very early and have a short jeep safari in the national park before breakfast, followed by a 4 hour guided walk through Periyar WS and then a 2 hour boat trip after lunch; or we will spend the full day on a jeep safari inside Periyar (what we do is dependent on availability and the weather). Either way we will search for some of the 900-1000 Asiatic elephants, guar, Indian muntjac, Nilgiri tahr, tigers, leopards and dhole. After spending the day in the sanctuary we will go back to the accommodation, level – 3 /4* (Hotel Treetop / Muthoot Cardamom Country) for our evening meal.
Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary
In the morning we will have a guided walk into Periyar or an elephant back ride (subject to availability). During this time we will focus on the very rare, smaller animals such as Malabar giant squirrels, lion-tailed macaques, Nilgiri langurs, side-striped mongooses, Nilgiri martens, blue-winged parakeets, rufous babblers, broad-tailed grass warblers and king cobras (the largest and most impressive venomous snake in the world). After the morning walk / elephant safari we will have the rest of the day to do what you want, including a spice plantation tour. Breakfast, lunch and dinner will be at the accommodation, level – 3 /4* (Hotel Treetop / Muthoot Cardamom Country) for our evening meal.
After breakfast at our accommodation we will set out in our private vehicle to Trivandrum (6 hours). After checking to the hotel we will spend the rest of the day at leisure. Our hotels are close to world class beaches such as Kovalam beach and tonight gives us the ideal time to recap what we have seen and enjoyed on the tour and relax in luxury before the hustle and bustle of Bengaluru once again. Our evening meal will be at our accommodation, – level 3 / 4* (Uday Samudra Leisure Beach Hotel / Fortune Hotel The South Park).
After our breakfast we will be transferred to Trivandrum airport to catch our short flight (1.5 hours) back to Bengaluru. On arrival in Bengaluru we will be transferred back to the same accommodation we had at the start of the tour, level – level 3*- (Hotel 37th Crescent Bengaluru / Hotel AJ International / Casa de Bengaluru). Our evening meal will be at the accommodation.
After breakfast you will be transferred to Benguluru International Airport for you to catch your flight home.
Please note that the itinerary stated above is correct as our planned intentions for the tour. However adverse weather conditions and other local considerations can necessitate some modifications of the itinerary during the course of the tour; any changes will be made to make the best of the time and weather conditions available to us.
This tour is available on different date (subject to availability) please contact us for more details about running this tour on a date which suits you more.
Mostly hot and dry during April. Temperatures can exceed 30-35 degrees during the day. Nights are cooler. Rain is unlikely but possible.
Everything mentioned in the itinerary is included. Including three meals per day (breakfast, lunch and dinner). There will be an amount of bottled water (approx 1ltr) available for each guest each day. We have our own private air conditioned Tempo Traveler with an excellent local driver. We have two brilliant guides; first an professional zoologist will escort you on all your excursions and we also use a very knowledgeable English speaking local guides.
All our excursions including treks, guided walks, jeep safaris, elephant back rides and park entrance fees are also included.
We recommend you bring along your own binoculars or scope as well as appropriate clothing; which should be light and airy clothes as well as comfortable walking shoes. As the nights can be chilly we recommend you bring a fleece, long trousers, scarf and a woolly hat. Insect repellent is handy as there can be mosquitoes about during the evenings and nights. Any medication, books or other items of a personal nature is of course up to you to bring along. Oh and please bring plenty of memory cards or film for your camera. Also do not forget sun cream, sun hat and sun glasses as the sun can be strong here during the day.
We provide a comprehensive species list of all the vertebrates present in the areas we are visiting as well as some of the best field guides and reference books for the areas we are visiting. There is usually a spare pair of binoculars but in a group of 4-6 people these do not stretch too far. We also provide a spot light for nocturnal viewing (this is subject to local condition when we arrive). Camera Traps will also be used to try and capture hard to see wildlife in the dead of night.
Nearly everything is included in this tour. The only things not included are international flights, travel insurance (contact us for more information one what is required from your insurance policy), any food bought outside of the three main meals, drinks outside of any offered with the meals and the bottled water provided each day and any items of a personal nature such as souvenirs and tips. Any departure taxes applicable when leaving are not included (but may be included in the cost of your flights), Please check this before hand.
As we are based in Manchester we recommend flights from Manchester International Airport
We recommend Emirates as a good airline for flights to Bengaluru (Bangalore). One of the best websites to search for the best fares is www.ticketstoindia.co.uk. They are an ATOL bonded company and this provide all the securities related to ATOL protection. Please check our terms and conditions regarding booking flights.
Please contact us for more information about flights and we can provide you with a link direct to the flights from another supplier; in which case you only have to enter the passenger information and payment details. By using the above link you will leave our site and we at Royle Safaris hold no responsibility for the content on the site.
Visas and Health Information
All UK passport holders and most other nationalities are required to have a visa for India. These are only obtainable in advance from your local embassy. The easiest way to find information is by visiting http://in.vfsglobal.co.uk/ (be aware that this link leaves our site and we at Royle Safaris hold no responsibility for information on the site).
There are no mandatory vaccinations needed to visit India, but it is recommended to be protected against TB, polio, typhoid, tetanus and hepatitis A as well as taking a form of malaria prophylactics. Please consult your GP about your individual requirements for visiting India as soon as you have decided on this trip.
Reviews of this Holiday
Joe & Rhoda, Chelsea, MI, USA
Scott Hyman - Canada
The Cookes, Staffordshire
Mrs. Stockton, Norfolk
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