Sariska Wildlife Sanctuary
Sariska Wildlife Sanctuary is spread over an area of 800 sq. kilometres neatly tucked in the Alwar District of Rajasthan. Sariska is administered by the Government of Rajasthan. It was declared a sanctuary in the year in the year 1955 and then Sariska Wildlife Sanctuary became an established National Park in the year 1979.
The scrubs, grasses and thorns and the deciduous forests along with the undulating topography set in the heart of the Aravallis with its steep rock faces and steep cliffs make for a home of a wide range of wild animals.
Sariska Wildlife Sanctuary is a glorious heritage and legacy of the ancient rulers of Alwar. Even today the royal ruins of the ancient temples and forts are proud remains of the past heritage and are ample hints of past richness of culture and wealth, valour and strength. The Kankwadi Fort close to Sariska is a brilliant example. This fort is steeped in the sadness of the story of imprisonment of Dara Shikoh by his own brother, the Mughal Emperor Aurangazeb. Also among the ancient temples, we can find the ancient Shiva or Neelkanth Temples built as far back as sixth to thirteenth century. The famous and beautiful palace of the Maharajas of Alwar has been converted into a heritage hotel, where tourists can stay to experience the royalty and the luxury and the essence of Indian culture.
There are several waterholes in the Sariska Wildlife Sanctuary which are visited by the wild animals all through the year, especially in the dry season when water is scarce in the rest of the jungle. A visit to the waterholes might prove beneficial for wildlife watchers while on safari as it provides them ample chance to view their coveted games/animals in the mornings and evenings. Tourists can book a convenient spot for viewing the water holes by paying a premium. The more vantage the hiding spot provides, the more in demand is the spot.
Apart from the very elusive tigers, Sariska Wildlife Sanctuary is also famous for other species of wildlife such as leopards, jackal, chausinga and wild dogs; a wide variety of dear, including sambhar, chital, antelopes; civet hyena, wild boar, porcupine, jungle cats, hare, nilgai, four-horned antelope and gaur or, more commonly known, Indian bison. Sariska Wildlife Sanctuary sports a wide variety of birds too. The most commonly found birds are peafowl and grey partridge, bush quail and sand grouse, tree pie and golden-backed woodpecker. Also one can see the rarer varieties such as the crested serpent eagle and the great Indian horned owl. Sariska Wildlife Sanctuary is also known for being a home to a huge population of Rhesus monkey. This monkey population is found near the place called Talvriksh. Among the variety of flora that the region sports, salar, kadaya, dhok, ber and khair are some of the most common trees to be seen in the Sariska Wildlife Sanctuary.
Important Information about Sariska Wildlife Package
Best means of safari in the Sariska Wildlife Sanctuary is via a jeep that can be arranged at the Forest Reception Office on Jaipur Road. Even the good sighting spot behind the watering holes can be booked in advance to get a closer and clearer view of the animals in their natural habitat. Sariska Wildlife Sanctuary also provides ample opportunity for remarkable wildlife photography within its premises.
Sariska Tiger Reserve does not have any special season for entry and can be visited all through the year. But having said all, the months of October to June are the months earmarked for forest safari. The months of July and September are closed for tourists and visitors.
Sariska Wildlife Sanctuary Safari timings
The interested visitors might do an online booking through the official website of the Rajasthan tourism. Booking has been now made easy through online facilities. You can also book via tourist and travel operators.
Safari Timing: The summer and winter timings of visiting Sariska National Park by means of Jeep Safari are as follows:
Winter Timings: October to December
Morning Safari: 6:30 a.m. in the morning till 10:30 a.m. in the morning
Evening Safari: 14:00 p.m. in the afternoon till 18:00 p.m. in the evening
Summer Timings: January to June
Morning Safari: 6:00 a.m. in the morning till 10:00 a.m. in the morning
Evening Safari: 14:30 p.m. in the afternoon till 18:30 p.m. in the evening
Jeep Safari, the most popular option: Jeep Safari is a must while in Sariska Wildlife Sanctuary to have a real feel of the jungle under the aegis of able and trained forest guides.
The expenses or cost for a jeep safari can be listed as follows:
- A nominal Rs. 25 per person for Indian tourists
- That same safari will cost Rs. 200 per person for international tourists
- 200 per person will be charged for video camera
- 150 would be the charges for each guide
The presence of at least one guide is made compulsory per jeep for safari.
Best time to visit Sariska Wildlife Sanctuary
The monsoon month of July and September are closed to safeguard the animals from prying eyes during the breeding season. The summer months are season and not as comfortable but these months are deal for wildlife watch in Sariska Wildlife Sanctuary as the water in most parts of the forests get dried up and the animals are bound to frequent the watering holes to quench their thirst.
The natural forests are India’s primary tourist attractions and attract a huge crowd both domestic and international all through the year. But amidst this crowd, it becomes necessary that certain basis rules and regulations are laid out for the visitors or guests.
Some rules and regulations to be followed for a Sariska Wildlife Sanctuary safari:
- A minimum of five people are required per jeep to enter the park.
- Jeep with less than five tourists would not be allowed to enter into the park. In case anybody wishes not to abide by the rule and enter with jeeps carrying lesser than five tourists, it is mandatory that he/she pays the entry fees of at least 20 tourists. This rule has been implemented specially to discourage more number of vehicles entering the forest environment because the more number of vehicles the more will be the disturbance to the protected wildlife inside the sanctuary.All information regarding nationality and identity proof are required for booking. The same rule applies for the tour organizers or tour operators who wish to go for advance booking. At the time of entry a random check is carried out on the basis of information submitted. It is advisable to carry an identity proof while on visit. Even Indian tourists should carry address proof along with identity cards.
- The Rajasthan Forest Department strictly allows 12 jeeps per trip per day morning and evening. Entry is usually on a first come first serve basis. Extra jeeps might be arranged with special permission from the forest department in case of some urgency, subject to availability.
- The safari booking charges in the name of jeep individual or group once paid is neither refundable nor adjustable.
Sariska Tiger Reserve
Sariska Tiger Reserve is popular worldwide. It is very strategically located just 200 kilometres away from the national capital. It is also just 107 kilometres from the colourful city of Jaipur, Rajasthan’s famous Pink City. The proximity to the national capital territory has facilitated its connectivity to all major cities and countries.
Sariska is spread over the rugged terrain of desert state Rajasthan covering a vast stretch of 800 sq. kilometres. The topography of Sariska exhibits a variety of landscapes. The grounds showcase deciduous forests with the potential animal watching venues among the grasslands, the rocky landscapes and some steep cliffs. The landscape is a favourite of tigers and helps camouflage the largest and the most sought after species of cat.
Sariska had gone through a dismal phase around the year 2004 when the forest frequenters reported absence of tigers in the sanctuary. When investigated, sadly no tigers could be found. Also no visible signs were there of the presence of tigers, such as pugmarks or scratch marks on trees and the likes. This sudden and unfortunate disappearance of tigers from Sariska made the Rajasthan Forest Department to conclude that the tigers have temporarily shifted their abode to the adjacent areas of the Reserve.
Sariska Tiger Reserve thus was losing its popularity, viewers and tourists fast. The continuous non-sighting of tiger in the Tiger Reserve called for an emergency tiger census. The Central Bureau of Investigation had conducted the investigation and finally sealed the fact that no tigers were left in the vicinity of Sariska Tiger Reserve and poaching was mainly to be blamed for this alarming fact. All the 16 tigers that were known to inhabit the Reserve even the year before had been poached.
To save the situation and to bring back the days of glorious tiger spotting in Sariska three tigers were relocated from other Reserves. There are plans of relocating more tigers. Henceforth, tigers along with tiger cubs were once more spotted at irregular intervals and taking the count to at least 14 tigers being sighted currently. This was a victory for the naturalists and happiness spread among wildlife enthusiasts to have been able to save the situation.