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There are plenty of activity options opened for you within the Indian Wild life Sanctuaries and they are not just restricted to watching the animals and birds.
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Home >> Wildlife Sanctuaries in India >> Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary

Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary

Situated on an area of 777 square kilometers in the Cardamom hills region of the Western Ghats the Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary is one of the largest and most frequented wildlife reserves in India. 350 square kilometers area forming the core region was declared as a National Park in 1982. In 1895 a dam was built across Periyar River to provide irrigation facilities in Tamil Nadu.

It is visited by the wildlife enthusiasts with a view to spotting tigers and leopards. But sightings of these animals are all but assured. However, this place is ideal for watching other animals in their natural habitat. Other animals include elephant, wild pig, sambar, gaur, Malabar flying squirrel, stripe-necked mongoose and over 260 species of birds including blue-winged parakeet, Nilgiri wood pigeon, white-bellied tree pie, laughing thrushes and flycatchers.

Located close to the border of the states of Kerala and Tamil Nadu, the park makes an ideal base to have a sojourn while undertaking long journey across the Ghats between Madurai and the coast. It's also a convenient place for excursion to the Cardamom hills, combined with the well known pilgrimage center of the Sabarimala, a couple of tea factories, spice plantations, and spectacular view of the forest waterfalls all of them a stone's throw distance.

Situated at cool altitudes with temperatures ranging between 15C and 30C, the park centers on a vast artificial lake The Periyar Lake. In 1899, the forest around the Lake was declared as Periyar Lake Reserve. In 1934 the sanctuary came to be known as Nellikkampetty Sanctuary. It was included into the Tiger Project in 1979. Sambhar, Indian Bison and Wild Boar are prey animals of Tiger. Cattle fringe area, however, forms the prey base.

Boat cruises on the lake are the best way to explore the park. There are boat services, which will take you around the lake. You can also indulge in trekking and elephant rides in the sanctuary. The tours to the natural world will be guided tours.

Highlights


Nature Walk - The guided day trek
Nature tours cover habitats of various species of birds and animals and are usually 4 to 5 kilometers in length. Pass through lush green woods of evergreen and moist deciduous forests. Tour timings are between 7.00 a.m. and 10.30 a.m. and between 2.00 pm. and 3.00 pm. A tribal guide accompanies a group of approximately 5 persons.

The Periyar Tiger Trail - Adventure trekking and camping
A team of former poachers conducts this programme. There are 5 guides and 2 forest officials to guide the tour. They are now the protectors of the forest. The team has a thorough knowledge of the terrain. Tour guides tell adventurous store to add spice to the tour. Generally the programmes are for 1 night / 2 days and 2 nights / 3 days. At 9 a.m. the tour begins to end by noon in the second or third day. En route tourists will see the faunal species. Vegetarian food is served and country tents are put up for a night stay. The authorities at the Forest have laid some preconditions for joining the tour. Only medically fit people between age group 15-65 are allowed to undertake the journey. The comforts of luxury hotels will not be provided.

Border Hiking - Protection oriented range hiking
Border Hiking is a conservation oriented hard trek starting at 8 o' clock in the morning and ending in the evening. The tour covers altitudinal ranges of 900 meters to 1300 meters. Maximum number of 10 tourists can undertake the programme in two groups. Vegetarian food is served during the tour.

Bamboo Rafting-Dawn to dusk range hiking
This programme covers some of the finest passages of the forest. The Tour starts from 8 a.m. At 5 p.m. in the evening, the team takes back the tourists to the boat. An armed guard and 4 guides accompany the group consisting of 10 tourists. During the journey, Tea, snacks and packed lunch will be served.

Jungle Patrol-Shepherding the jungle
Every night, a team patrols in the fringe of ecodevelopment zones of this jungle. Only the persons who do not have any fear of the night and wilderness can undertake this tour. The tour can start at any time between 7 p.m. and 4 a.m. Feel the primitive in you by using all your senses to keep yourself protected from the nocturnal wildlife setting an eye on their prey. Only 8 visitors can go in separate teams accompanied by an armed forest guard. The tour goes on for three hours.

Tribal Heritage - A peep into the past
Mannans, a tribal group inhabiting Periyar Tiger Reserve, is the oldest group of the reserve. Till 1940's these people lived in remotest areas. Tribal Heritage Museum

Inside the Mannan settlement, a tribal heritage museum was built. The museum features artifacts related to Mannan marriage ceremonies, agricultural practices, dress code, cultural events, rituals and death ceremonies. Other attractions of the museum are fishing gear, hunting weaponry, indigenous medicine and vessels, cereals, medicinal herbs, bamboo furniture, etc. The guests are taken for a two-hour tour to the Museum from 8 a.m. to 12 noon and 2 p.m. to 4 pm.

Jungle Inn - Jungle in the night
From the forest check post, at a walk of about an hour, there is a forest cottage at Kokkara. The place can lodge two persons. Check in / out timings are 3 p.m. and 9 a.m. the following day.

The farmlands of a village hidden in the valley behind the mountains of Periyar Tiger Reserve can be approached in a bullock cart. The village is also rich in bird life. Farming is the oldest occupation of Indian culture. At this small village the tourists will see vineyards, agricultural crops of onions, mangoes, sunflower, tamarind, jasmine and a score of other vegetables.

The best time to visit the Park is from December to April, when the dry weather entices animals from the forest out to the lakeside. However, avoid the period immediately after the monsoons, they are more likely to remain in the forest.

How to Reach

Air:
The nearest national airports are Cochin (200 km) and Madurai (140 km).
Rail: The nearest major rail junction is Kottayam.
Road: Well connected by bus service to the major cities


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Bharatpur Wildlife Sanctuary - Corbett National Park & Sanctuary - Sariska Wildlife Sanctuary - Gir National Park & Sanctuary - Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary - Dandeli Wildlife Sanctuary - Thattekad Bird Sanctuary - Kadalundi Bird Sanctuary - Kolleru Bird Sanctuary - Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary - Karnala Bird Sanctuary - Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary - The Palamau Tiger Reserve

 

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Best of India with Tigers Tour - Tiger Special Tours - Grand Tour of Tigerland
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Lion Safari - Jeep Safari
Elephant Safari - Camel Safari


Bengal Tiger


Bengal Tiger

The natural heritage in India is as rich and diverse as the cultural heritage. The wildlife sanctuaries and the national parks here give you an essence of the same. Nestled in this rich land is the Royal Bengal Tiger, the only home to the Royal Tiger Cat.

 
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Glimpses of India

Indian Forests - Eastern Habitats - Himalayan Wilderness - Southern India Jungles - Wild West India - Wildlife Trails
Wildlife Tours in India - Wildlife National Parks India - Wildlife Sanctuaries in India - Wildlife Safaris in India - Bengal Tiger - Wild Animals in India
India Birding Tour Packages - Tiger Tours India - Glimpses of India

 
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