Pench National Park is a beautiful deciduous forest just 92 km away from the city of Nagpur in Maharashtra. Situated on the borders of Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra, this forest is famously known for Mowgli and The Jungle Book stories by Rudyard Kipling.
Visiting here with an expectation to see a Tiger? Useless. You are going to be heartbroken. No, I am not being a pessimist, it’s just true. Pench has a small population of Tigers.
But, like many wildlife observers have said, one must never go out in the wild only to see a Tiger, or a Leopard, because there just might be something equally interesting you might be missing on the way. This is true for every forest in India, travel with a wide view, to see the jungle and all its forms.
Yes, let the big cats take you by surprise. Go here to see the Pangolin or the Mongoose. The wild boars, the jackals hunting or the rarely sighted pack of wild dogs are no less an achievement. Look for the Neelgaai, Gaurs, Langoors, Macaques, Sambhar and a number of Spotted Deer. The Pench national park has the maximum population of Spotted Deer so seeing them just everywhere can be a little irritating after some time. But wait, that’s not all that Pench offers. A variety of 170 species of birds promise to keep you amazed by their frequent calling and flights.
Look out for the colourful blue flight which might be the Indian Roller or the yellow flyer i.e. the Oriole. The Cuckoo saying ‘brain fever’ or the Coppersmith Barbet hooting in the background just makes the safaris a truly satisfying experience in to the jungle. And, don’t miss the peacock dancing, the spur fowls jumping on the rocks. Or the tree barks where some beautifully colored woodpeckers might be making their little homes. And don’t forget to check the hollows in the trees, an owl might be peeping out, looking at you with its cute little face and big round eyes. Look up in the blue sky, the Raptors might be hovering and the Vultures keeping an eye to scavenge on something. And just when you are admiring all these birds, the Paradise Flycatcher might take you by surprise with its flight and the long white tail.
Who knows, you might just spot a sloth bear suddenly. And then if you hear the Langoors and deer shouting in panic, which the local guides call the “alarm calls” you might just see a Leopard jumping to the water body or if you are lucky enough, maybe a Tigress on the prowl.
Have patience & nature will take you by surprise if you just keep your eyes open for everything it has to show.
Pench is a beautiful experience. Don’t miss it.
How to get there?
Take a bus/train/flight to Nagpur according to what suits your pocket. Trains are fun, thus recommended!
From Nagpur, it takes 2 hours approximately by road.
Best time to Visit?
Months of November to May. The park remains closed in monsoons.
Where to Stay?
Many private resorts and hotels are available surrounding the national park.
Here are some glimpses of wildlife from Pench National Park: