As one of India’s finest wildlife destination, spectacular Ranthambore National Park is known for its tigers and magnificent fort. Hundreds of kilometers of preserved jungle surround the 10th-century military complex. Though overgrown with vines and vegetation, remnants of the summer palaces, temples and guard stones still remain. With its seven gates and mighty curtain walls, crowning a central hill; the fort offers breath-taking views of the park. Dotted around are ancient temples, four crocodile-lined lakes, cenotaphs and reclusive bird hides.
Beginning as a Maharajah’s hunting reserve, Ranthambore is now the only place in Rajasthan where it is possible to see the endangered wild tigers. The reported 32 tigers are often spotted during daytime, stalking, hunting or caring for their young. Sighting the striped maharajah of the jungle is not a guarantee, but the park also offers beautiful scenery and a diverse array of birdlife, with up to 300 species recorded in the park. Other species of animal include spotted deer, sloth bear, hyena, Indian gazelle and Nilgai Bluebull, as well as nocturnal and highly endangered leopards and caracal.
Sighting Tigers stalking through the jungle | Walking up to the fort | Peacocks lining the walls of the fort at dusk | The spectacular fiery red aura of the Flame of the Forest tree as it envelopes the canopy in April
− The park was established as a sanctuary in 1959 and secured in the first phase of Project Tiger in 1972
− The fort was constructed by the Chauhans in the 10th century and was strategically located between north and central India making it very desirable as a vantage point for rulers
− Notorious as the location of the ‘Johar’ (suicide to escape capture) by Rajput women in 1301 AD during the Ala-ud-din Khilji siege