Once a private hunting area for the British, this famous wildlife destination has a rich variety of flora and fauna making it a gorgeous tourist spot.
Kabini is abundant in the best that nature has to offer, be it a huge variety of plants and trees, a rich population of wildlife, or the river flowing through beautiful landscapes. This destination has everything that a nature lover’s heart could desire.
One of the best wildlife sanctuaries in Karnataka, the Kabini Wildlife Sanctuary can be found here. The national park is located on the south-eastern part of Nagarhole National Park and covers an area of 55 acres of forestland, water-bodies and steep valleys. In the early eras, this was the private hunting spot of Mysore’s King and then became a “shikhar” hotspot for British viceroys and Indian royalty.
In 1955 a small wildlife sanctuary was set up here, and later became a national park in 1988. Ten years later, in 1999, it was declared a Project Tiger reserve. Kabini is most famous for its leopards, tigers, Indian bison, and elephants, but one can find panthers, sambhar deer, spotted deer, cheetals and around 250 different species of birds at this wonderful reserve as well.
On the banks of one of its prime attractions, the Kabini River, one can easily spot wild animals like elephants and tigers indulging in a drink. The Kabini River flows through this ancient land which is said to have been the site of iconic events from the Ramayana and Mahabharatha, with shrines built at the historical spots where they took place. An especially exciting way to explore nature is through boat safaris as other types of animals can be spotted here such as Indian wild dogs, jackals, sloth bears, striped hyenas, barking deer, four-horned antelopes and civets. Reptile enthusiasts should look for mugger crocodiles, Indian rock pythons, Russell’s vipers, common kraits, rat snakes, and bamboo pit vipers here.
Kabini is home to the largest congregation of Asiatic elephants in the world, which makes for a truly spectacular sight. It is one of the few places where one can observe the magnificent Great Indian Gaur, also known as the Indian Bison for long periods of time, and very often at close quarters.
During summer, animals in large numbers gather near the water and the dam at Kabini Wildlife Sanctuary, across the river near Beechanahalli, is a also special attraction for tourists.
Truly gifted with nature’s bounty, the Kabini Forest Reserve is surrounded by Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary, Mudumalai National Park, Bandipur National Park and Nagarhole National Park. The vicinity is a part of Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve which has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site.