Enchanting natural splendor can be found throughout India.
We particularly like going to the north, visiting Kumaon and Garhwal–two beautiful regions of Uttarakhand, a tourist-friendly state in the crosshairs of the Himalayas.
In Kumaon, there’s the idyllic hills of Almora, Bageshwar, Champwat, Nainital, Kathgodam, and Pithoragarh. In Garwhal, there’s the serenity of Rudraprayag, Chamoli, and Pauri Garhwal.
While Kumoan and Garwhal make for a traveler’s delight, it wasn’t always the case. In the early 1900s, locals were threatened by in the wild by tigers, leopards ,and other members of the cat family.
Fortunately for the people, one man singlehandedly toiled to safeguard them.
His name was Jim Corbett (1875 – 1955), a naturalist and conservationist who was responsible for hunting down 40 tigers and leopards between 1907 and 1938.
Corbett’s most defining success: patiently waiting eight years to find and shoot the famous Man-eater of Rudraprayag (Garhwal), a leopard responsible for killing over 125 people.
Among Corbett’s other illustrious kills: the Panar Leopard (responsible for killing 400), the famous Temple Tiger, the Champawat Man-eater,and the Talla-Des Man-eater.
Because of Corbett’s heroism, a national park is named in his honor, and we highly recommend Jim Corbett National Park as a great starting point for your North Indian adventures.
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Reaching Corbett National Park and what to do there
Jim Corbett National Park is a favorite holiday spot in the north of the country, situated at the heart of the forest region of Kumaon in Uttarakhand.
The park is home to birds, bears, crocodiles, monkeys, elephants, as well as buffalo, deer, and, of course, the ever-elusive tigers… making it an ideal place for nature lovers, wildlife enthusiasts, and curious travelers.
While you can take the train from Delhi to the Ramnagar Railway Station, it’s advisable to drive from Delhi, where the 7-hour trip will provide you with lots of scenery, culture and adventure.
It’s easy to hire a car or take a bus to Ramnagar, a journey that can be facilitated by the concierge staff at any major hotel.
Once at Corbett, you will find plenty of good, hospitable accommodation marked by convenience, safety and cleanliness. Additionally, people here aren’t hard pressed for time — so both initiating a conversation and just getting to know the locals will come easy to you.
The park itself is best known for the amazing opportunity it gives you to spot the tiger, India’s national animal. But in recent years, opportunities to see tigers have gone down quite a bit, given man’s ever-increasing need to encroach upon the wild forests.
If you don’t get a glimpse of a tiger, the trip is still worth it. There’s plenty to see and explore.
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When to visit
August is torrentially wet, and a 4×4 jeep safari, a main attraction, is closed in September, so the best time of the year to visit Jim Corbett would be from October until the tourist-heavy season of summer.
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The spirit of Jim Corbett National Park
Promoting ecotourism since 1991, the Jim Corbett National Park provides regular workshops and events to raise awareness.
To get into the spirit, we urge you to read Jim Corbett’s My India, a passionate account of his days growing up as a hunter and conservationist.
If you still want to read more about Corbett, we suggest you pick up a copy of The Man-eating Leopard of Rudraprayag.
Courtesy of Jim Corbett National Park
Lead-In Image Courtesy of Contributor Dev Tyagi (email@example.com).