10 Best Wildlife Safaris in South India
South India has very densely populated forests with immense flora and fauna. According to ISFR survey in 2017, South Indian states Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, and Kerala played a crucial role in increasing forest growth in all over India. The Western and Eastern Ghats mountain ranges with lush greenery are the main reason for the natural beauty of South India.
South Indian states will be the best places in India to witness varied wildlife animals and mostly Elephants. Because Elephants population in South India is more and varied when compared to others. By this article, you will get to know about the 10 Best Wildlife Safari in South India.
1. Bandipur National Park
Bandipur National Park is a famous one in India and a part of “Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve” in Karnataka. This beautiful national park is home to nearly 100 mammal species and 350 bird species. Bandipur National Park covers larger area and home to many endangered animal species.
Here you can see a large number of tigers, sambhar, gaur, chital, wild dogs, jackal, hornbills and the mouse deer etc. The major wildlife attractions of this National park are Panthers, four horned antelopes, and the Elephants. You can also witness here some rarest bird species like jungle fowl and green pigeon. The best time to visit this national park is in Monsoons and Summers due to the pleasant and friendly environment.
Also Read : Travel Tips for Visiting Bandipur National Park
Suggested Tour : 13 Nights Kerala Wildlife Tour
2. Periyar National Park
Periyar National Park is one of the famous tiger and elephant reserves in India and located in Thekkady, Kerala. This national park is home to many endangered animals to restore the wildlife. Wildlife safari to this park is unforgettable with many activities like trekking. The rivers Periyar and the Pamba are the beautiful attractions of this national park.
Here you can see many rare species like Monitor Lizards, lion-tailed macaque, Nilgiri Langur, Bonnet Macaque, and Gaur etc. Totally, there are 300 mammal species, 40 reptile species, 160 insects species, 260 bird species, and 40 fish species. The major attractions in birds here are Darters, Kingfishers, racket-tailed Drongoes, and Cormorants etc. Periyar is open in all months even in monsoons. But the most favorable time to visit means from September to April.
Suggested Tour : 13 Days – Kerala Hill Stations Tour
3. Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary
Ranganathittu is the best destination for bird lovers in Karnataka. A beautiful destination on the banks of River Kaveri with a lot of varied birds. This Bird Sanctuary is home to migratory birds from Siberia and Latin America during the winter season. Nearly, there are 170 species of birds are living here.
The most noticeable birds here are Common Spoonbill, Black-headed Ibis, Painted Stork, and Asian Openbill Stork. Not only birds, here some small animals are also given shelter. They are flying fox, Indian Grey Mongoose, bonnet macaque, and monitor lizard. The best time to visit this bird sanctuary during the nesting season from June to November. Usually, migratory birds come in December but the time changes according to climate. Finally, don’t miss the boat ride here.
Also Read : 15 Top Places To Visit In Karnataka
Suggested Tour : 11 Days – South India Wildlife & Cultural Tour
4. Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary
Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary is an integral part of Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve in Kerala. It is also the second largest wildlife sanctuary in Kerala by preserving the endangered flora and fauna. This immense wildlife sanctuary is home to 216 bird species and 30 amphibians species.
The major wildlife attractions here are mostly tigers, elephants, langurs, bonnet macaques, crocodiles, bi-colored frogs, ramnella etc. Popular bird species watchable here are the owl, black woodpecker, babbler, cuckoo, and jungle fowl. Across the river, you can see some rare fishes like Malabar catopra, snake heads, Wayanad mystus etc. The best time to visit this sanctuary is during the winters from October to February. During this time climate is suitable with cool temperatures.
Also Read : Top Tourist Attractions in Wayanad
Suggested Tour : 13 Days – Kerala Beaches & Forests Tour
5. Silent Valley National Park
Silent Valley National Park is a human untouched park in the Nilgiri Hills in Kerala. This National Park is a unique one with vast biodiversity and undisturbed place in South Western Ghats mountain rain forests in India. Silent Valley is like a heart core of Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve with immense flora and fauna.
This valley is a place for many types of research on its rich biodiversity. Many endangered animals and rare plant species are also founded here. Due to the undisturbed environment, this national park was home to many endangered animals. Mostly you can see the Malabar giant squirrel, lion-tailed macaques, Nilgiri wood-pigeon, Nilgiri tahr, and Nilgiri langur etc. The best time to visit this national park is in between December and April. Visiting hours to this park is also limited just from 8 AM to 1 PM.
Also Read : 10 Best Places for Wildlife Photography in India
6. Eravikulam National Park
Eravikulam National Park can be said as Nilgiri Tahr mountain goat reserve. Because it mostly concentrates to preserve the mountain goat Nilgiri Tahr. It is also the best place to experience the alpine biodiversity and shola-grassland ecosystem. This national park is home to 19 amphibians species, 26 mammal species, and 132 birds species.
The major wildlife species can be seen here are Nilgiri langur, tigers, leopards, and Indian bison. Eravikulam is also the best recreational spot with many adventurous activities like trekking, camping, and helicopter rides. Eravikulam is also one of the best wildlife destinations in Kerala. The best time to visit this national park is during from September to November and from April to June.
Suggested Tour : 8 Days – Kerala Tour
7. Mudumalai National Park
Mudumalai National Park is one of the finest National Parks in South India sharing boundaries with Karnataka and Kerala. This park is covered with lush greenery of Secondary grasslands, Shrubs, and Swamps and home to many species. The major attraction of this Park is Moyar river separating Mudumalai from Bandipur. Moyar river is home to nearly 21 amphibian species and 50 fish species.
Here you can witness India’s rarest Bengal Tiger, White-rumped vulture, and long-billed vulture. In this national park, completely there are 50 mammal species, 34 reptile species, and 200 birds species. Most common animals can be seen here are Elephants, Gaur, Leopard, Owls, Parakeets, and Mynas etc. Favorable time to visit this park is from October to May.
Suggested Tour : 6 Days – South India Wildlife Safari
8. Nagarhole National Park
Nagarhole National Park is a famous national park in Karnataka and also a part of Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve. This park is very famous for the constant increase in tiger ratio. Nagarhole is home to many predators like tigers, wild dog sloth bear, leopard, and hyena. Their count is steadily increasing in this park by the protective measures. In this park, you can see a variety of bird species nearly 250 near the Kabini River banks.
And the most common animals spotted here are sambhar, deer, gaur, four-horned antelope, wild boar, elephants, Indian bison, marsh crocodile, and rocky python etc. Nagarhole is a beautiful national park with waterfalls, hills, and valleys. The best time to visit this national park is from April to May and from November to February.
Suggested Tour : 16 Days – South India Wildlife Tour
9. B.R. Hills Wildlife Sanctuary
B.R.Hills is a unique wildlife sanctuary with peculiar Eco-system and with connective rivers of Cavery and Kollegal. This sanctuary is located in between the western and Eastern Ghats with many attractions. The main attraction of this sanctuary is 200 bird species lives here and they are the crested eagle, racket tailed drongo, and the white-winged tit.
This deciduous forest is home to many flora species nearly 800. Here you can see Gaurs, sambhar, tigers, leopards, elephants, wild dogs, and chital etc. B.R Hills Sanctuary is also an adventurous spot for trekking, rafting, angling, fishing, and coracle boat riding near the river Cauvery. The best time to visit this sanctuary is from November to March.
10. Viralimalai Wildlife Park
Viralimalai wildlife park is very famous for Peacock Sanctuary and the Murugan Temple. This is the right spot to see the flora and fauna of Tamil Nadu and varied peacocks. Here in this park, you can see six different types of peacocks. This park is completely dedicated to rise and restore the varied peacocks. At present, the number of peacocks has risen to 500.
The most attractive and famous peacock variety is Palawan Peacock Pheasant. This Peacock is very famous because it exhibits different colors. However, this wildlife sanctuary is the beautiful one to see different peacocks at a place. For the visitors of Chennai, this place will be the most visited place in their tour. The best time to see all variety of peacocks is from October to April.
Finally, these are the top 10 wildlife sanctuaries or national parks in South India for the best wildlife tours. All these places are home to many endangered animal species and flora. In one word, these forest areas are Reserves for many animals and natural habitation. So it is our duty to protect them.
You can go around these sanctuaries or parks by jeep rides or safaris and can enjoy many adventurous activities like boating, trekking, camping, rafting etc. You can collect many weird and unforgettable moments with the habitation of wildlife and its attractions.
Also Read : Top 20 Wildlife Sanctuaries to Visit in India