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Audley Traveler
02 Min Read
Bengal tiger, Bandhavgarh National Park, India

Wildlife encounters in India

We love travel and visiting wild places. We also are enthusiastic amateur photographers. Having visited southern Africa several times, we decided that this year we would like to find out what India has to offer.

We liaised with Sophie at Audley about our interests and on her advice we settled on a trip planned around Kanha and Satpura national parks in Madhya Pradesh.

We were warned that the weather in late April was likely to be pretty hot, but told that if we were able to cope with the heat this was one of the best times of year from the point of view of seeing wildlife. Sophie was right on both counts.

We had excellent and very enthusiastic naturalists in both national parks who, once they knew that we were interested in photographing not only tigers but also the other wildlife, large and small, did their utmost to help us.

As with any wildlife photography, the more time one puts in the greater the chances of success but there is always an element of luck as to whether one sees anything at all.

We were aware that a very confident blue-eyed leopard called "Nilu" (which translates as "Bluey") was being seen fairly regularly in Satpura, but hadn’t really dared to hope that we would get a reasonable view of him.

We were ecstatic therefore that our penultimate day there brought us the wonderful experience of having a fully wild leopard walking calmly and slowly beside our vehicle only a couple of metres away.

We could not have asked for better.

A Malabar giant squirrel in Satpura, more concerned with eating figs than about the cameras

A Malabar giant squirrel in Satpura, more concerned with eating figs than about the cameras

A tiger resting during the heat of the day in Kanha National Park

A tiger resting during the heat of the day in Kanha National Park

A couple of mating common tiger butterflies photographed from the verandah of our room in Kanha

A couple of mating common tiger butterflies photographed from the verandah of our room in Kanha

An Indian roller bursts into colour as it takes flight in Kanha National Park

An Indian roller bursts into colour as it takes flight in Kanha National Park

Incredibly confident around vehicles, Nilu is a blue-eyed leopard who roams Satpura National Park

Incredibly confident around vehicles, Nilu is a blue-eyed leopard who roams Satpura National Park

A rusty spotted cat filmed on a night drive in Satpura National Park

A rusty spotted cat filmed on a night drive in Satpura National Park

In the heat of the day in Kanha, we sometimes felt that the tigers had the right idea in retreating to the water to keep cool

In the heat of the day in Kanha, we sometimes felt that the tigers had the right idea in retreating to the water to keep cool

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Start thinking about your experience. These itineraries are simply suggestions for how you could enjoy some of the same experiences as our specialists. They’re just for inspiration, because your trip will be created around your particular tastes.
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