With a total population of about 1.4 billion people, India has the second-largest population in the world. The vast forests are home to many indigenous animals such as Bengal tigers, Asian elephants and Indian one-horned rhinos. In this article, you can read about the best national parks in India for spotting wildlife and how to apply for an Indian visa.
Documents required to travel into India
To enter India, you need a special tourist visa. You can easily apply for this visa online by using a digital application form. Once your visa has been granted, you will receive it by email. This e-visa is valid for 30 days and allows you to stay in India for a maximum of 30 days as well. Briefly, this means that you can enter India within a period of 30 days. This period starts from the moment your visa application is approved. You can find the validity period on the visa itself.
You may decide to enter India on a date other than the one indicated in the visa after it has been granted. In general, you do not need to inform the immigration authorities of this new date, as long as it falls within the scope of the 30-day validity period following the issuance of the visa. However, your departure date may also fall outside this validity period, as long as you do not stay in India for more than 30 consecutive days. Letʼs suppose you arrive in India on the last day of the validity period, you can still stay in India for a maximum of 30 days.
Bandhavgarh National Park
The Bandhavgarh National Park covers an area of 105 km² and is located in the Umaria district, which is part of the state of Madhya Pradesh. The park is known to have the highest concentration of Bengal tigers compared to any other park in India, or perhaps even the world. Many other animals also live here. The park is home to hundreds of species of birds, butterflies, and a species of monkeys called the grey langurs. These monkeys are sacred in Hinduism. This national park is open from October to June. The nearest airports are Habalpur (200 km) and Khajuraho (250 km). Booking a safari here must be done online. If you want to explore the park from the air, you can choose to book a safari by hot air balloon.
Kanha National Park
With its forests, bamboo crops and grasslands, Kanha National Park was the backdrop for The Jungle Book by R. Kipling. This tiger reserve is located in the state of Madhya Pradesh and covers an area of 110 km². Apart from Bengal tigers, the park is home to many species of animals such as the Indian leopard, the barashinga (a swamp deer known as the “jewel of Kanha”) and numerous bird species. This reserve is widely known and respected for its conservation programmes aimed at preserving endangered species. The park is open from October to June and, again, safaris must be booked online. The nearest airport and railway station are in Jabalpur (160 km).
Kaziranga National Park
The Kaziranga National Park, located in the state of Assam, was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1985. The forests of this national park are home to two-thirds of the worldʼs population of Indian one-horned rhinoceros. Covering 430 km² of meadows, lagoons and forests, the park is home to a wide variety of animal species. Nearly 40 species of mammals live here. The park can also be explored with an elephant safari, which has to be booked online. Like most other Indian reserves, this national park remains closed during the summer months due to the monsoons. The nearest airport to the Kaziranga National Park is Rowriah Airport, which is located 96 kilometres away from the park.
Applying for an Indian visa
If you wish to go on safari in India, you need to apply for an India visa before departure. You can choose to apply for an electronic visa for India (e-visa India). This type of visa has the lowest fees and fastest processing time. It is easy to apply for an e-visa online, so there is no need to visit an embassy or consulate.