Bandhavgarh / Kanha / Pench

#16 Oct 30th, 2010, 14:29
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#16
Sorry drgrudge, if I am asking too much details, but can't stop asking,

Baghira Log hut is just outside Kisli gate where as you mentioned Gypsy's are available in front Khatia gate. How far these 2 locations are and how feasible it is to reach Khatia gate before start of morning safari from Baghira Log Huts and bargain for Gypsy (if you don't have a car with you)?

Baghira Log hut is excellent as it is inside park only problem is it is quite costly, thanks for the recommendation though, I would see if I can fit it in my budget.

I found name of Motel Chandan, a budget acco near Khatia Gate here in IM. How is that property, anyone having any first hand experience? Also I read about Barasinga Guest House which is a good budget accommodation, anyone have their contact number?

How is the White Tiger , the MP Tourism resort in Bandhavgarh? Value for money? Anybody heard about Bandhavgarh Meadows? They charge almost equal to MP Tourism but says it's little far (4 km) from Tala. Does it make sense to stay near to Tala Gate or otherwise?

I think if I need to get a Gipsy bargain, stay should be near Tala Gate only.
#17 Oct 31st, 2010, 00:07
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#17
Khatia and Kisli gates are 2 km apart. Khatia gate is just a gate. Not a zone. Game drives from Kisli will have to pass through Khatia gate. For your info, there is another gate called Kanha.

Baghira Log Huts will arrange for game drives. You don't need to worry. We stayed in Kanha Jungle Camp (MP forest rest house). It's just outside Khatia gate. Outsiders are also allowed (sorry, I don't have contacts) and the location is excellent. Should be cheaper than Baghira.

Staying near to the gate is very important. It'll save time when going for the morning game drive. You should be the first (or amongst the first) if you want to enjoy the ride even more. If you want to deal with the drivers, then staying near to the gate makes a lot of sense. Personally I don't care where I stay (any decent place to nice place to sleep/eat would do). It's the tiger reserve which is what we've gone for.


P.S.:
1. There is a nature trail near Khatia gate and this is a must do if you want get the feel of a jungle walking at your own pace. Lots of birds and we sighted a barking deer, wild boar too! There's a machaan where you get the view of the forest.
2. Don't forget to go to Bandhaygarh fort. Not to be missed.
3. Tadoba is better than Pench for tiger sightings.
#18 Oct 31st, 2010, 17:59
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#18
Thanks drgrudge, for eliminating the confusion between Khatia and Kisli gate for good

Yes these Forest Rest Houses seems to be good options, I am not sure about their standards in MP, but I stayed once in Himachal and it was awesome!!

How is the Kanha FRH? Nothing spectacular I am expecting, just clean beds and attached clean toilets are more than enough and I agree cent percent we are going there for the tiger reserve than anything else. Is there provision of food in the Forest Rest Houses of MP Govt?

One most likely disadvantage of FRH is, the reservation of common people may get cancelled in case of a Govt Official or VIP visit, isn't it?

I would talk to Bandhavgarh and Pench FRH as well, trying to get the contact number and hope the reservation process shouldn't be too complex and clumsy.

Thanks for recommending the nature trail in Kanha

Now Bandhavgarh Fort, is it possible without trekking up the hill? I mean to say if Gypsy can go up there now? I heard from this year cars are not allowed on top of Bandhavgarh Fort, is it true? I am afraid, I may not hike with kids there. Also I heard there is a separate permit required to go there and there exists a permit restriction to number of cars allowed to Bandhavgarh Fort in a session, (I heard around 5 permits issued for a session) is it true? How to ensure that I can get a Fort permit, I don't see anything of Bandhavgarh Fort while trying to book safari online. Is it just first come first serve on spot? Again too many questions, sorry for that.

Thanks for Tadoda heads up, would keep it my mind.

Cheers!!
#19 Nov 1st, 2010, 19:23
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#19
Kanha has 3 FRHs. One at Kanha gate (only for VVIPs), one at Kisli gate (only for senior forest officials, VIPs) and the one at Khatia gate. The one at Khatia gate is where we stayed. It was very good location. The best after Baghira. Lots of wildlife in the FRH premises only. The food was good enough. B'garh FRH (Rs 3000 doubles) equally good. The interpretation center in the FRH premises only. I've stayed at MP forest FRH all over MP and my experiences has always good baring one place.

Bandhavgarh fort is strictly restricted by movement in gypsy only. Limited permits are issued but you shouldn't have problem in getting one. Trekking is banned since many times tigers and leopards are sighted. In fact if you are lucky you can sight a big cat on the way. You need the written permission of the field director (or his deputy/range officer).

If I were in your shoes, I would not waste time traveling and going to Pench and do only the big two - Kanha & Bandavgarh.
#20 Nov 1st, 2010, 20:59
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#20
Quote:
Originally Posted by drgrudge View Post Kanha has 3 FRHs. One at Kanha gate (only for VVIPs), one at Kisli gate (only for senior forest officials, VIPs) and the one at Khatia gate. The one at Khatia gate is where we stayed. It was very good location. The best after Baghira. Lots of wildlife in the FRH premises only. The food was good enough. B'garh FRH (Rs 3000 doubles) equally good. The interpretation center in the FRH premises only.
Excellent information drgrudge, I would talk to them and let me see how things go from there. But could they refuse accommodation even after prior booking in case of sudden VIP arrival, the common characteristics across India for any Govt RH?

Quote:
Originally Posted by drgrudge View Post I've stayed at MP forest FRH all over MP and my experiences has always good baring one place.
Curious, which one is that you didn't find good?

Quote:
Originally Posted by drgrudge View Post Bandhavgarh fort is strictly restricted by movement in gypsy only. Limited permits are issued but you shouldn't have problem in getting one. Trekking is banned since many times tigers and leopards are sighted. In fact if you are lucky you can sight a big cat on the way. You need the written permission of the field director (or his deputy/range officer).
The information that Bandhavgarh Fort is not accessible by Gypsys are provided by some hotels and they said this was applicable from this year only, though I really don't find not much reason to trust them unless I could verify their claim from Forest Dept.

Quote:
Originally Posted by drgrudge View Post If I were in your shoes, I would not waste time traveling and going to Pench and do only the big two - Kanha & Bandavgarh.
Really makes a lot of sense to me now, I am going rethink on the itinerary, only problem is I have to come to that way as my flight back home is from Nagpur only.

Thanks for all help
#21 Nov 1st, 2010, 21:44
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#21
Kanha FRH has atleast 8 cottages plus dorm. Also they've FRH at Kisli for VIPs/forest officers. I guess you shouldn't face a problem.

That bad-experience FRH was in Karanjia near Amarkantak (Achanakmar Wildlife sanctuary). We were put up in another nice FRH in the wildlife sanctuary area but suddenly a SDM (with his family) came and we had to move to Karanjia. Too bad but we stayed just for the night. We went to Karopani Blackbuck Santuary after moving and were treated by gorgeous sightings of the antelope. We sighted a fox and a yellow wattled lapwing (its common but always I see the red wattled one) too. So that made up for the bad experience.
#22 Nov 2nd, 2010, 16:38
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#22
Spoken to all the three Forest Dept, process is almost same, send an application in fax addressing the Field Director and then send the money in DD by courier/speed post. Once they receive money, they would be confirming the booking. So they are taking the full advance; now I am thinking if they taken full money, how they could deny the accommodation in case a VIP arrives then?

Bandhavgarh, you mentioned the double bed room is 3000/-, the guy told me the air cooled room at 500/-, not sure if AC would be having so much difference or I have spoken to wrong places, but they comfirmed I called at Umaria office and the FRH is at Tala. Does Bandhavgarh FRH is having various categories of room? In such case can you suggest the better categories in Kanha/Bandhavgarh and Pench?

Cheers!!
#23 Nov 2nd, 2010, 17:08
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#23
Dear Kishil,

I had some bad experiences in Bandhavgarh. Some of the guides can be rude and take you to a spot for using the "bathroom" and keep you waiting for three to four hours out of your precious time that you have looking for a tiger and if you complain, they mistreat you. Several people had bad experiences with the guides who are unionized it seems, plus the forest is very small and too many tourists. I suggest you avoid Bandhavgarh and go to Kanha, Pench and Tadoba. I used to swear by Bandhavgarh until I had these bad experiences (waiting and rudeness of some of the staff) there and I am never going back again.
#24 Nov 2nd, 2010, 17:26
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#24
Lingaraju, thanks for this timely word of cautions. I never even had an idea on such things in Bandhavgarh. Have you taken a Gypsy just from gate or you gone with the car taken from hotels/resort where you stayed? Just keep someone waiting for 3/4 hours in a safari time is aweful I would say. Can you lodge any complain against them anywhere officially?

Again, thanks for sharing such a horrible experience.
#25 Nov 2nd, 2010, 19:43
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#25
We stayed in a cottage/hut thingy (with AC, small courtyard) at Bandhavgarh. There are other kind of accommodation as well. If it is just Rs 500, then its good.
#26 Nov 3rd, 2010, 21:59
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#26
Quote:
Originally Posted by drgrudge View Post We stayed in a cottage/hut thingy (with AC, small courtyard) at Bandhavgarh. There are other kind of accommodation as well. If it is just Rs 500, then its good.
But tell me is there any possibility the prebooked and advance paid accommodations can be denied by MP Forest in case of VIP arrival? Do they arrange alternative accommodation or just refund the money and don't own any responsibility?
#27 Nov 21st, 2010, 23:08
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#27

Pench Queries

What I understood from various posts, there are 3 Forest Gates in Pench.

1. Touria - This is most popular and most of the accommodations are close to this gate. I believe MPTDC, Kipling's Court is close to this place. Number of cars allowed through this gate is 45

2. Karmajhiri - Forest Dept RH is located here but don't see other options for accommodations. Number of cars allowed through this gate are also much less, only 9

3. Jhamtara - Haven't seen much accommodation here and it seems to be in the other side of Pench River.

I have 2 questions here.

1. Is there any advantage of using Touria Gate in terms of Wild Life, like people prefers Tala gate over others in Bandhavgarh for better sighting?

2. If I choose to stay at FRH in Karmajhiri, would it be possible for me to avail safaris through Touria Gate, or my only option would be using Karmajhiri gate? In same context, does Pench Forest Administration allow entering through Karmajhiri gate and exiting through Touria gate or vice versa?

It would be really helpful if someone experienced with Pench can drop a few lines here.

Cheers!!
#28 Nov 22nd, 2010, 15:52
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#28
Spoken to Forest Official at Pench, what they said are

1. Booking by Fax and DD possible only before one month of Travel, (Not sure why one month, when Bandhavgarh/Kanha taking the booking even months before)

2. The lady said, in case you stay at FRH, Karmajhiri gate is the gate to use, Difficult to use Turiya Gate from logistics perspective.

3. Mowgli Hut, the best one inside the forest among the FRH is only for VIP, they won't allow general people there.

4. Accommodation of a non AC room is 1200, so not that economical either as compared to Kanha or Bandhavgarh.

Anyone having any firsthand experience staying at Karmajhiri FRH? Kipling's Court Air Cooled room in MAP Plan is not bad it seems now.
#29 Dec 24th, 2010, 13:13
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#29
Hi All

I've been reading this thread and its very useful information. We are looking at booking accommodation and safari at Kanha in February. When looking at the MP tourism site you can pay to enter three different zones of the park, Kanha, Mukki and Sahri. Does anyone know which of these you are more likely to spot a tiger in?? I know a sighting is not guarenteed! We are only there for two nights and are looking at booking accommodation in Mukki.

Many thanks
#30 Dec 24th, 2010, 13:42
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#30
Most of the accommodations are available on Kanha end and few on Mukki side. I am not aware of anything in Sahri range. It's very difficult to mention which zone is best to spot tigers, unless it's something like Tala zone of Bandhavgarh where mostly people proves to be lucky. As accommodations / Jipsy rides are easily available in Kanha side, most experiences you would find from this zone only, so in other word more popular but read reports where people spotted tigers in Mukki where as failed in Kanha. So better go with open mind and if you like less crowd choose Mukki, if you don't want to put much effort on looking for accommodation and other amenities choose Kanha. But for accommodation don't rule out MP Forest department rest houses, seems to be extremely value for money, they have one in Kanha end I know, not sure about Mukki side, MPtourism has one though at that end.

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