20 Best National Parks in India for Wildlife and Nature Lovers

By Amandeep May 05 2022
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By Amandeep May 05 2022
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Zoological parks are great for educational purposes, but ultimately, no one likes to see these beautiful animals locked up in cages. 

Nothing in the whole world beats the fun and thrill of seeing the wild animals roam around in their natural habitats. Thankfully, our country has various national parks that allow you to be wild and experience the thrill of being in the jungle. Not to forget, trips to such places come with added benefits like night camping, jeep safaris, boating, etc. 

Here, we have the top 20 national parks in India, where you can enjoy a few days in the wild. So, what's stopping you? Keep reading to find the destination for your next wildlife tour!

  • Hemis National Park

The Hemis National Park is located amidst a cold desert at the higher altitudes of the Himalayas. It's located at more than 10,000 ft. above sea level, making it an ideal destination for trekkers and adventure enthusiasts. Also, if you didn't already know, the primary focus of the national park is the difficult-to-find snow leopard. 


As one of the most endangered species on Earth, it's not found in many places. However, you can still see a large population of snow leopards in this national park. Camping fans will also enjoy setting up a tent amidst the snow-capped mountains and starry night skies. 

Area- 4,400 km²

Entry fee- Rs.20 onwards.

Best time to visit- all-year-round (However, one must be extra cautious during winters).

Prominent mammals are- Snow Leopard, Tibetan Sheep, Ladakhi Urial, Red fox, Himalayan Wolf, Himalayan Brown Bear, and Blue Sheep.

Prominent birds are- the Himalayan Griffon Vulture, Golden Eagle, and Bearded Vulture.

  • Kanchenjunga National Park

Nestled in the lap of the Himalayan Ranges, Kanchenjunga is a popular national park of Sikkim. It's situated over a varying range of heights from 1829 m to over 8550 m above sea level. Here, tourists will find many rare and indigenous fauna species. 


Adventure enthusiasts will also enjoy the thrill of camping amidst the mountain ranges. Moreover, the rich biodiversity and scenic landscape of Kanchenjunga make it India's first Mixed Heritage site on the UNESCO World Heritage Site list.

Area- 1784 km²

Entry feeRs.300 onwards.

Best time to visitall-year-round (March to May highly recommended)

Prominent mammals areSnow Leopard, Sloth Bear, Tibetan Wild Ass, Himalayan Tahr, Himalayan Blue Sheep, Serow, Goral, Musk Deer, and Dhole.

Prominent birds areGreen Pigeon, Himalayan Griffon, Tibetan Snowcock, Sunbird, Blood Pheasant, Osprey, Satyr Tragopan, and Bearded Vulture.

  • Bandhavgarh National Park

As one of the most famous national parks in Madhya Pradesh, the Bandhavgarh National Park attracts hundreds of wildlife lovers every year. Here, tourists can see the magnificent Royal Bengal tiger roaming in its natural habitat. As per the reports, it is said that around eight of these tigers inhabit every one square kilometer area of this park.

 Also, if you're interested in Jungle Safaris, you can enjoy either a jeep or an elephant one in the morning and evening. These Safaris are conducted through four tourist regions, including Tala, Magadhi, Khitauli, and Panpatha. Moreover, here you will find open grasslands and dry deciduous forests.

Area1536 km²

Entry feeRs.250 onwards

Best time to visitFrom 25th October to 30th June.

Prominent mammals areTiger, Leopard, Four-horned Antelope, Gaur, Chinkara, Bengal Fox, Sambar, Nilgai, Wild Boar, Barking Deer, Golden Jackal, and Striped Hyena.

Prominent birds areSarus Crane, Black Vulture, Changeable Hawk-Eagle, White-backed Vulture, Egyptian Vulture, Crested Serpent Eagle, Lesser Adjutant Stork, and Long-billed Vulture.

  • Gir Forest National Park

Home to the king of Jungle, the Asiatic lion, the Gir Forest National Park is a well-protected territory in India. It's spread across Gujarat's Junagadh, Gir Somnath, and Amreli districts. Moreover, the forest is similar to the African savanna, with vast shrubs, occasional trees, and open grassland vegetation. 

The area is reported to have around 2,000 varied wild species, making the land a treat for wildlife photographers.

Area1412 km²

Entry feeRs.150 onwards.

Best time to visitFrom 16th October to 15th June

Prominent mammals areAsiatic Lion, Leopard, Jungle Cat, Four-horned Antelope, Sambar, Chinkara, Blackbuck, Wild Boar, Nilgai, Striped Hyena, Bengal Fox, Golden Jackal, and Spotted Deer.

Prominent birds areTawny Eagle, Crested Hawk-eagle, Bonelli’s Eagle, Crested Serpent Eagle, Painted Stork, King Vulture, and Pelican.

  • Ranthambore National Park

If you're on a journey to see the majestic tiger in its natural environment, the Ranthambore National Park makes the perfect destination for you! 

Located in Rajasthan's Sawai Madhopur district, Ranthambore was home to the world's most famous and fierce tigress, Machli. Over the years of her lifespan, she has featured in many national geographic and discovery channel documentaries. The park also has the famous Ranthambore Fort, which gives the place its historical significance.

Area1334 km²

Entry feeRs.100 onwards.

Best time to visitFrom 1st October to 30th June.

Prominent mammals areTiger, Spotted Deer, Desert Fox, Chinkara, Sambar, Nilgai, Golden Jackal, Sloth Bear, and Wild Boar.

Prominent birds areCrested Serpent Eagle, Pelican, Stork, Peafowl, Sarus Crane, Kingfisher, Owl, and Flamingo.

  • Sundarban National Park

Identified as one of the best UNESCO World Heritage Sites, the Sunderban National Park is a significant wetland forest in West Bengal. Here, tourists can find Royal Bengal Tigers swimming comfortably in the forest rivers.

 Many branches of the river Ganga also make their way through the mangrove forest, making it hard to walk around. Therefore, instead of Jeep Safaris and walking trails, you'll have to navigate through the park on boats.

Area- 1,330 km²

Entry feeRs.60 onwards.

Best time to visitFrom November to March.

Prominent mammals areTiger, Fishing Cat, Leopard Cat, Spotted Deer, and Fox.

Other prominent species areStork, Grey-headed Sea Eagle, White-bellied Sea Eagle, and Saltwater Crocodile.

  • Jim Corbett National Park

As the first national park in India, the Jim Corbett National Park was created in 1936 to protect the majestic Royal Bengal Tigers. Surrounded by dense hills, the national park is spread across Uttarakhand's Terai region. 

It has open grasslands and thick forests that make the best home to the big cats. Also, more than 600 bird species inhabit Jim Corbett, making it ideal for bird watching. Tourists can visit five different zones of the National Park- Jhirna, Durgadevi, Dikhala, Bijrani, and Dhela.

Area1,318.54 km²

Entry feeRs.200 onwards.

Best time to visitFrom 15th November to 15th June.

Prominent mammals are-  Tiger, Leopard, Elephant, Spotted Deer, and Barking Deer.

Prominent birds areDove, Chat, Robin, Finch, Pallas' Fish-eagle, Hornbill, beef eater, babbler, and Kingfisher.

Other prominent species areCrocodile and Gharial.

  • Kanha National Park

Kanha National Park is one of the most prominent tiger reserves spread across Madhya Pradesh's Maikal Range. The park is home to 300 different bird species, tigers, and other animal species.

 Thanks to the diverse flora and fauna, lush green fields, and crystalline water bodies- it also makes the best tourist destination for nature and wildlife lovers. Once here, make sure to book a jeep or an elephant safari to get a closer look at the park's wildlife.

Area940 km²

Entry feeRs.250 onwards.

Best time to visitFrom Mid-October to June. (However, November to February are highly recommended.)

Prominent mammals areTiger, Panther, Wild Pig, Sloth Bear, Blackbuck, Gaur, Hard-ground Barasingha, Spotted Deer, and Barking Deer.

Prominent birds areCrested Serpent Eagle, Malabar Pied-hornbill, Emerald dove, etc.

Other prominent species areIndian Monitor Lizard, Python, Russell’s Viper, Indian Cobra, etc.

  • Sariska National Park

Nestled in the lap of the Aravalli Hills in Rajasthan, the Sariska National Park is home to the famous Royal Bengal Tiger. Sariska is one of the first tiger reserves in India to have relocated tigers successfully. 

Tigers were moved here from Ranthambore to repopulate the national park. Here, tourists will also find a range of fauna, bird species, and other animals. Moreover, the national park features open grasslands, dry deciduous forests, scrub-thorn forests, and rocky land.

Area881 km²

Entry feeRs.80 onwards.

Best time to visitall-year-round (October to May highly recommended)

Prominent mammals areRuddy Mongoose, Indian Hare, Grey Langur, Indian Leopard, Golden Jackal, Jungle Cat, Nilgai, Small Indian Civet, etc.

Prominent birds areCrested Serpent Eagle, Rain Quail, Jungle Bush Quail, Peafowl, Indian Eagle-owl, Golden-backed Woodpecker, etc.

  • Pench National Park

The Pench National Park is a famous tourist destination in Madhya Pradesh's Seoni and Chhindwara districts. It attracts many wildlife enthusiasts looking forward to seeing several endangered and rare species. 

As per estimation, the park is home to 50 ferocious Bengal tigers, 40 other mammal species, 13 reptile species, 210 bird species, and some amphibians. If it's your first time in the town, you can also look for hotels in Pench to spend a pleasant few days here.

Area758 km²

Entry feeRs.15 onwards.

Best time to visitFrom Mid-October to June.

Prominent mammals areBengal Tiger, Jackal, Jungle Cat, Striped Hyena, Wild Boar, Sambar, Chital, Nilgai, Indian Leopard, Four-horned Antelope, and Barking Deer. 

Prominent birds areHerons, Wagtail, Magpie Robin, Peafowl, Racket-tailed Drongo, Crimson-breasted Barbet, Junglefowl, and Lesser Whistling duck.

  • Great Himalayan National Park

Located in the Kullu region of Himachal Pradesh, the Great Himalayan National Park is one of the latest additions to the UNESCO World Heritage Site list. It is situated over a varying range of elevations from 5,000 ft. to over 19,500 ft, making the entire Himalayan vegetation visible. 

At the lowest height, you'll find subtropical pine forests. Beyond these, we have the temperate coniferous forests, consisting of deodars, firs, and spruces. But, as we go above, the subalpine grasslands and meadows replace the conifers.

Area- 754 km²

Entry feeRs.150 onwards.

Best time to visitFrom October to June.

Prominent mammals areSnow Leopard, Bharal, Himalayan Tahr, Goral, Red Fox, Himalayan Brown Bear, Musk Deer, Blue Sheep, etc. 

Prominent birds are- Golden Eagle, Himalayan Griffon Vulture, Monal Pheasant, Bearded Vulture, Eagle Owl, etc.

  • Kudremukh National Park

Situated in Karnataka's Chikmagalur district, the Kudremukh National Park is at the height of 1894 m above sea level surrounded by lush green hills. It is home to several indigenous and endangered species of flora and fauna. 

Moreover, you can spot around 200 different bird species in this park, making it ideal for bird watchers. Here, you're bound to get mesmerized by the beautiful walking trails, lush green vegetation, natural ponds, and milky-white waterfalls.

Area600 km²

Entry feeRs. 200 onwards. 

Best time to visitall-year-round (However, October to February are highly recommended.)

Prominent mammals areTiger, Gaur, Sambar, Lion-tailed Macaque, Wild Dog, Wild Pig, Malabar Giant Squirrel, Sloth Bear, Chevrotain, and Barking Deer.

Prominent birds areMalabar Whistling Thrush, Imperial Pigeon, Red-whiskered Bulbul, Malabar Trogon, Great Pied Hornbill, etc.

  • Kaziranga National Park

The Kaziranga National Park is another place bestowed with the UNESCO World Heritage Site title. It's one of the last national parks where you'll still get to see the endangered one-horned rhinoceros. 

Here, you'll find open grasslands, called doors by the locals. Besides, the place is also home to other large mammals, including the Indian Bison (Gaur), weighing around 1,500 kg.

Area430 km²

Entry feeRs.50 onwards.

Best time to visitFrom 1st November to 30th April.

Prominent mammals areOne-horned Rhinoceros, Indian Elephant, Wild Water Buffalo, Gaur, Tiger, Leopard, Swamp Deer, Hog Deer, etc.

Prominent birds areEurasian Eagle Owl, Pallas’ Fish Eagle, Ruddy Shelduck, Bar-headed Goose, Kingfisher, Himalayan Griffon, Cinereous Vulture, etc.

  • Mudumalai National Park

Situated at the height of around 1266 m, the Mudumalai National Park is snuggled in the Nilgiri plateau's north-western corner. It is home to many endangered species of amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals.

 Moreover, as per reports, you'll find more than 100 tigers here. The park also features tropical evergreen and moist deciduous forests. So, it's advised to explore the area through jeep or elephant safaris. 

Area321 km²

Entry feeRs.30 onwards.

Best time to visitall-year-round (February to June highly recommended)

Prominent mammals areTiger, Leopard, Striped Hyena, Nilgiri Marten, Monkeys, Grey Langurs, Golden Jackal, Sloth Bear, Stripe-necked Mongoose, Sambar Deer, Asian Elephant, etc.

Prominent birds areMalabar Grey Hornbill, White-naped Woodpecker, Crested Serpent Eagle, Indian cuckoo, Long-billed Vulture, White-rumped Vulture, etc.

Other prominent species areMugger Crocodile, Goan Day Gecko, etc.

  • Periyar Tiger Reserve

Named after the Periyar River, the Periyar Tiger Reserve is another famous national park in Kerala. Here, you'll see everything you imagine the Western Ghats to be. Lush green hills, walking trails, breathtaking lakes, crystalline rivers, and diverse fauna make it the perfect destination for some nature photography. 

Designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, this place is home to several indigenous species, making it a must-visit place for wildlife enthusiasts.

Area305 km²

Entry feeRs.155 onwards.

Best time to visitall-year-round

Prominent mammals areNilgiri Tahr, Nilgiri Langur, Indian Giant Squirrel, Tiger, Gaur, Dhole, Elephant, etc.

Prominent birds areNilgiri Wood Pigeon, Rufous-bellied Eagle, Blacked-necked Stork, Great Hornbill, and Sri Lankan Frogmouth.

  • Eravikulam National Park

The Eravikulam National Park is situated at an elevation of 2258 m, with tea plantations as the scenery behind. If you're in Kerala, you must visit this place as here you'll find the rarest species of the mountain goat, Nilgiri Tahr. 

Besides, if you're lucky enough, you might see the famous Neelakurinji flowers that blossom only once in 12 years. It's also home to various indigenous butterflies and 19 different amphibian species.

Area97 km²

Entry feeRs.125 onwards.

Best time to visitFrom April to January.

Prominent mammals areLion-tailed Macaque, Nilgiri Langur, Dhole, Indian Barking Deer, Golden Jackal, Wild Dog, Jungle Cat, etc.

Prominent birds areBlack-and-orange Flycatcher, Nilgiri Flycatcher, White-bellied Shortwing,  Nilgiri Wood Pigeon, Nilgiri Pipit, Kerala Laughing Thrush, etc.

  • Valley of Flowers National Park

Located in Uttarakhand's Chamoli district, the Valley of Flower is another name on the UNESCO World Heritage Site list. Tourists will find fields of indigenous Alpine flowers and shrubs spread across the entire national park. 

Besides, the trek from Govindghat to the Valley of Flowers adds another experience to your trip. The 40 km long-trek features mountain streams, breathtaking waterfalls, and exotic flora and fauna.

Area87 km²

Entry feeRs.150 onwards.

Best time to visitFrom June to October. (However, it's recommended to visit before October.)

Prominent mammals areHimalayan Black Bear, Himalayan Weasel, Red Fox, Himalayan Musk Deer, Himalayan Tahr, Himalayan Goral, Blue Sheep, Grey Langur, Red Giant Flying Squirrel, etc.

Prominent birds are- Yellow-billed and Red-billed Choughs, Himalayan Vulture, Koklass Pheasant, etc.

Other prominent species areHimalayan Ground Skink, High Altitude Lizard, and Himalayan Pit Viper.

  • Blackbuck National Park

Situated in Gujarat, the national park was established in 1976 to protect an endangered species of deer, the Blackbuck. It's also one of the very few places that inhabit the Indian wolf, making it worthy of a visit for wildlife enthusiasts.

 Also, here you'll find tall, golden grasses with few trees in between, unlike the lush greenery of the Corbett and Kaziranga National Park.

Area34.08 km²

Entry feeRs.20 onwards.

Best time to visitall-year-round (However, October to March highly recommended.)

Prominent mammals areBlackbuck, Nilgai, Golden Jackal, Indian Wolf, Striped Hyena, Wild Boar, Hare, etc.

Prominent birds areStork, Bustard, Eagle, Crane, Falcon, etc.

  • Keoladeo National Park

The Keoladeo National Park is a small human-made avifauna reserve in Rajasthan. It serves as a paradise for birdwatchers and ornithologists with more than 370 bird species. Moreover, the park was previously known as Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary.

 Besides birds, tourists will also find some amphibians, reptiles, and mammals in this park. With over 380 plant species, this place is a perfect treat for botanists and nature lovers. Here, you will find several rickshaws guiding the way around on well-paved pathways. The sanctuary was declared a national park in 1982, and within three more years, it made its spot on the UNESCO World Heritage Site list.

Area29 km²

Entry feeRs.75 onwards.

Best time to visitall-year-round (August to November highly recommended.)

Prominent mammals areLeopard, Golden Jackal, Striped Hyena, Chital Deer, Nilgai, Blackbuck, Wild Boar, Indian Porcupine, etc. 

Prominent birds areGreater Spotted Eagle, Imperial Eagle, Painted Stork, Siberian Crane, Cormorant, Heron, Spoonbill, etc.

  • Bannerghatta Biological Park

Bannerghatta Biological Park in Bangalore is a perfect mixture of exotic fauna and rich flora. Thanks to the varied range of trees found in the park, more than 100 bird species take shelter here. 

Besides, the park also features jeep, elephant, and bus safaris to explore the area and witness wild animals in their natural habitat. Here, tourists can also enjoy camping at night along the borders of Bannerghatta.

Area- 27 km²

Entry feeRs80 onwards.

Best time to visitall-year-round (November to June highly recommended.)

Prominent mammals areRoyal Bengal Tiger, Asiatic Lion, Indian Wolf, Leopard, Jackal, Fox, Striped Hyena, Blackbuck, Nilgai, Barking Deer, Bonnet Macaque, Wild Boar, Sloth Bear, Spotted Deer, Giraffe, Hamadryas Baboon, Pangolin, Slender Loris, etc.

Prominent birds areLaughing Dove, Asian Koel, Flamingos, Pelicans, Peacocks, Rainbow Lorikeet.

Other prominent species areMonitor Lizard, Krait, Python, Russell’s Viper, etc.

Conclusion

These were some of the best national parks in India that provide you with a brief insight into the country's varied biodiversity. Not just that, but you also get an idea of the geographical diversities of the country in different places. So, if you're planning a tour of any of these parks, we recommend you visit the state a few days ahead to experience the local life. You can also look for hotels in these places at  BookYourOwn.net for affordable deals.

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