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India wildlife tour to Bandipur with Cochin and south Indian hills

14 days from £1755*

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Overview

Indian wildlife tour, with a balance of wildlife safaris, scenic drives, historic sight-seeing, spice and tea plantation visits and a chance for trekking (optional) to enjoy stunning panoramas, even a ride on the famous 'toy train'.  Parks such as Bandipur, Nagarhole and Periyar provide a breathtaking difference in habitat to those in the North with much denser and lush jungles.  Although these parks are home to sizeable tiger populations, and other cats, the chances of spotting them at any time of year remains slim. These parks are most noted for the herds of wild elephants, deer and monkeys, as well as a rich variety of bird life and (some unusual) smaller mammals.

We focus on Bandipur due to better lodges and an improved safari experience for true wildlife enthusiasts.  The park also offers a realistic chance to see Gaur (Indian Bison), sloth bear and the rare wild dog (Dhole) and is held to offer a 'better' chance of sighting the tiger.  There are over 200 bird species listed, and the butterfly list is also extensive.  Bandipur is part of the Nilgiri biosphere along with Mudumalai, Wayanad and Nagarhole, the combined reserves form Indias largest protected area.  These parks have plenty in common but Nagarhole is home to some more unusual species such as flying squirrel, loris and pangolin (scaly anteater). 

Itinerary

This is a Private Tour

  1. Day 1

    India wildife tour starts with a meet and greet on arrival in Bangalore, private transfer via Srirangapatnam to Mysore and overnight at ‘Royal Orchid Metropole’

  2. Day 2

    a guided tour of Mysore, including visits to Mysore Palace, Chamundeswari Temple, Government House and the spiritual town of Somnathpur

  3. Day 3

    morning transfer to ‘Bandipur Safari Lodge’, arriving in time for a shared afternoon jeep safari

  4. Day 4-6

    morning and afternoon shared jeep safaris inside Bandipur National Park

  5. Day 7

    transfer to Coonoor, visiting Ooty en route.  Check in to the ‘Taj Gateway’, before exploring the botanical gardens at Sim’s Park and climbing (by car) to Dolphin’s Nose viewpoint

  6. Day 8

    trek (part way) up Dodabeta Peak - at 2623m the highest peak in the Nilgiri range .  Later enjoy a ride on the ‘toy train’; the one way journey time is approximately 1hr 15mins

  7. Day 9

    early start to visit Banagudi Shola National Park where you will take a walking tour with a naturalist, looking out for Gaur, sambar and spotted deer and a diversity of birdlife. There is scope to visit a tea factory en route

  8. Day 10

    a scenic drive through the hills to the ‘Windermere Estate’ at Munnar, passing through Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary

  9. Day 11

    plan an early start for Eravikulam NP; the park holds the largest viable population of the endangered (IUCN) Nilgiri Tahr as well as (elusive) Nilgiri marten, ruddy mongoose, small clawed otter and dusky striped squirrel.  Later there will be time for a visit to a tea/ coffee plantation and factory

  10. Day 12

    another scenic drive down through the hills to the ‘Old Harbour Hotel’ in Cochin, taking your time to stop and enjoy the views. Evening Kathakali dance performance

  11. Day 13

    take a guided tour of Cochin, including visits to the Mattancherry Palace, Synagogue, ‘Chinese’ fishing nets and St Francis Church

  12. Day 14

    transfer to Cochin airport and bid a fond farewell to southern India at the end of your Indian wildlife tour

Meals

Accommodation: a private tour throughout; good quality tried and tested lodges, with upgrade options on request. All meals included in Bandipur, breakfast only elsewhere.

Cost: from £1755 per person based on two sharing (excludes international flights)

Dates: 1st October 2014 to 15th June 2015 (excludes 20th Dec to 5th Jan)

For a full tour description email Wildlife Trails and include the trip title, or for a different combination we are happy to help design your perfect India wildlife tour.

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* Based on 2 persons and not including flights

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