WildZests: A Quick Trip To Bandipur and K'Gudi

Friday, September 26, 2014

A Quick Trip To Bandipur and K'Gudi

Having been to Kabini a couple of times already, we wanted to visit some of the other national parks around here. Bandipur used to be my favorite hangout a few years back but Kabini had taken over that position ever since. The sightings at Bandipur had slowed down after the tigress "Gowri" died early last year and her cubs have taken to their own separate ways. There is a handsome male "Prince" who is now the ruling champion of the tourism zone in Bandipur but it's not everyday that he is being sighted.

Bookings at Jungle Lodges are always difficult to get unless you're going on a weekday, we could barely manage to get a one day booking at Bandipur. So we decided to add another day at K'Gudi which is one of those places where I've always wanted to go but never ended up going. Being the peak summer time, we were thinking we may get a bit lucky at either of the places.

Forest Fire - Elephant

The safari ride in Bandipur was pretty quiet, there was a recent forest fire that had charred quite a large area of the jungle and the wildlife was just adjusting to it. With a little help from the summer rains new grass had begun to emerge from the otherwise parched landscape. Most of the water holes were running dry except a few which had minimal water remaining.


It was good to be back in Bandipur after a relatively long time. Our safaris however were pretty quiet and uneventful, to the extent that I hadn't pulled out the camera more than a couple of times. But that's how unpredictable these wildlife trips can be, sometimes you're busy throughout the safari with lots of action happening all around and other times you just sit around admiring the vistas without needing to pickup your camera even once.


The next day we reached K'Gudi, the JLR property here is within the buffer area of the forest so there is no demarcation between you and the wildlife. There isn't a regular power supply available and the power generator is intermittently used through the day. At night, there is no power supply and each tent is supplied with a kerosene lantern as emergency lighting system. It's a really nice experience to be staying in the wild and I could hear numerous chital and sambar calls through the night signalling the presence of the striped cat nearby. On checking with the staff, they told me that the resort actually falls into the area of one of the tigresses and the warning calls are pretty much an everyday affair. There were also some reports of a kill being sighted about a kilometer away from the resort behind the hill that surrounds it on the back side. No wonder that they discourage guests from loitering outside their tents/cottages in the night once the lights go off.


The safari at K'Gudi was a lot different than what we've done at Bandipur or Kabini. The whole area is hilly and visibility isn't all that great. The chances of sighting a tiger or leopard isn't as high as some of the other reserves, but if you do get lucky, people have had a wonderful time photographing them. The bird life on the other hand, is one of the highlights of K'Gudi, even a casual glance around the resort will yield a lot of different species to be recorded. Another difference is the barking deer population at K'Gudi is significantly higher than Bandipur or Kabini, it could be because of favorable terrain or the food availability.


There is a bird bath created just outside the dining hall and once the breakfast or lunch event is over, you can see a lot of birds coming down there for a dip and drink. The oriental white eyes, shyamas, robins etc are regular visitors of this place. We noticed it only on the next day while having breakfast and didn't get much time to spend there, but it's on my to-do list for the next time.

Oriental White Eye


  1. Wow..Amazing pictures. Bandipur national Park is a great place for adventure and wildlife lovers. Get to know about best Bandipur tour packages and enjoy a lovely vacation.