This type of jungle safari will make you fill, like zoologists that roam about in jungles to study wild animals and their habitat. Variety of animals and birds, especially large herds of chital enjoying the green grass can be seen during the safari
Who could forget the cartoon serial with famous song Jungle Jungle baat chali hai pata chala hai... and the human child character of Rudyard Kipling's famous work 'Jungle Book', Mowgli, who identified himself so much so with the animals that he started behaving like them?
To everyone's surprise Mowgli, is not just a flight of imagination but a hardcore reality. In 1831 Lt. John Moor along with Col. William Sleeman found a real human child, who was nurtured by wolves, in Seoni District in the Pench Jungle area.
Pench National Park, located 92 kms from Nagpur, is in southern boundary of Madhya Pradesh. A 12 km metalloid road from khwasa check post (81 kms from Nagpur-Jabalpur National Highway No.7) leads to this reserve cum camp. Connected by National Highway 7, it takes a smooth 2 hours drive to get to the National Park.
In the year 1983, the area of 292.85 sq. km was taken out of Pench Sanctuary and was declared as Pench National Park leaving the rest area of 118.31 sq km. as Pench Sanctiiary. In 1992, government gave this sanctuary the honour of becoming the 1 Tiger Reserve of the country.
Recently, three years ago, in 2002, the Pench National Park and Pench Sanctuary has been renamed as 'Indira Priyadarshini Pench National Park' and 'Mowgli Pench Sanctuary' respectively. Nestled in the southern slopes of the satpura ranges of central India, the park is named after Pench River, which splits the National Park into two.
This jungle houses Tiger population of India and is very different park compared to Kanha and Bandhavgarh National Park of the same state. The area of this tiger reserve is not just an ordinary place but has a glorious past that takes you back to Rudyard Kipling's Jungle Book, which was inspired by Strendale's semi- autobiographical 'Seonee'.
The Pench Tiger Reserve and its neighbourhood are the original setting of the 'Jungle Book'. Many of Jungle Book's locations are actual locations in Seoni District like the Waingunga River with its gorge where 'Sherkhan' was killed, Kanhiwara village and the 'Seeonee hills'.
The park is full of beautiful landscapes with small snaky streams and nullahs that can be found in every nook and corner. Pench River flowing through the center of the park provides water not only to the flora, fauna and water birds but also to the forest department. By the April-end when the river gets dry, number of other water pools locally known as 'dohs' fills up the scarcity and serve as waterholes for animals. Number of earthen ponds and shallow wells have been developed recently to distribute the sources of water all around the reserve.
On entering the park you would find tall teak trees that welcomes you with open arms and are ready to embrace you. A total of 760 sq. km of land in the park has mosaic of moist and dry vegetation. The array of plants found in the park includes several rare endangered herbs, shrubs and plants of botanical importance.
As the area is rich in vegetation and also has thick green carpet of grass, Chital, spotted deer and Sambar are in large population. This Tiger Reserve has the highest density of herbivores in India with an average population of about 55 animals per sq. km, which is more then double compared to any other National Park of the country.
The canvas of the park is filled with wide ranging wild animals. Tiger, Leopard, Jungle Cat, Wild dog, Barking deer, Indian Bison, Nilgai, Wild pig and striped Hyenas are the specialty of this area. Other animals include sloth bear, chousingha, chinkara, jackal, fox, small Indian civet and Porcupine etc.
The park also provides you with surroundings ideal for stress removal. Herbal cure are available, at Herbal health centers, for a variety of ailments like diabetes, heart problem and blood pressure etc.
Pench Tiger Reserve is also a paradise for bird-watchers. In total, there are over 285 species of birds that includes not just the resident birds like Pitta, Osprey, Grey- headed fishing eagle, white-eyed buzzard etc. but also the migratory birds that migrate in thousands during winters.
Every year migratory waterfowl including Brahmini duck, pochards, bar- headed goose etc. visit the pench reservoir within the park. And if you want to have a look at the four now endangered species of vultures- white-rumped, longbilled, white scavenger, king vulture- there is no better place than Pench Tiger Reserve.
The park offers you with unlimited natural bounties along with some special attraction that will definitely let you have the benefit of this trip. No tiger reserve visit is complete without a jungle safari. A jeep drive around the narrow lanes of the park is enough to provide you with an unforgettable moment but wait don't forget the camera to accompany you as it will preserve every special moment of yours that you will cherish life long.
This type ofjungle safari will make you fill like zoologists that roam about in jungles to study wild animals and their habitat. Variety of animals and birds, especially large herds of chital enjoying the green grass can be seen during the safari.
But if you fail to have a glimpse of Tiger during your jungle safari don't worry the Pench National Park also gives you another option i.e. elephant rides. The elephants are used to trace and show tigers to the tourists. To see a tiger standing helplessly in front of you will be a breathtaking moment and an enchanting experience. The large Pench reservoir within the park provides you with a magical setting for boating.
For those who love adventure sports, river rafting in the Pench River flowing outside the park area will be exciting. But this could only be enjoyed between 1st Sep. to 15th October. For nature lovers who want to have a first hand experience of nature the nature trail are the best option. These types of trails have been identified with wide ranging flora and fauna that can be encountered in their natural surroundings outside the park.
The park also provides you with surroundings ideal for stress removal. Herbal cure are available, at Herbal health centers, for a variety of aliments like diabetes, heart problem and blood pressure etc. Meditation and yoga courses are also available on demand.
The National Park and the Reserve area, which was a forgotten land earlier, would not have been able to make its position on the world map without the support of the government and the localities. India Eco-development project was funded by World Bank progress since 1997-9 8. To reduce the dependency of the villagers on the project tiger area, 99 'illages around the tiger reserve have been identified in order to develop their own resources.
As the villagers are mostly agriculturists the government has continuously made an effort to improve their farmlands and creating infrastructure for irrigation, organic farming, crop protection and safe drinking water. Special emphasise has been given for women empowerment and to ensure their active participation for conservation and protection of the tiger reserve.