Pench National Park
One of the three better known parks of Madhya Pradesh, Pench Tiger Reserve connects well with Kanha National Park (5 hour drive) and is just two hours from Nagpur, though this does mean that it gets very busy on weekends with local tourists. Pench is relatively small, a core area of 229 square kilometres in a total area of 750 km of sal and teak forest which makes it a different visual experience from the neighbouring Kanha and Bandhavgarh National Parks. It is also a lush forest with many water bodies and it has the highest concentration of herbivores of any of the parks. There is a healthy tiger population here and the beautiful Indian wild dogs are also often sighted. However, what we are particularly excited about is the newly opened Jamtara Lodge. This is located on the northern edge of the park in an area where there are no other lodges, making it a unique Indian wildlife experience. They have also introduced the African concept of ‘star beds’ enabling you to sleep out under the stars and wake up to the sounds of the jungle, priceless!
Due to the increasing regulations for the parks in Madhya Pradesh, numbers of jeeps are restricted and must be booked as far in advance as possible (full passport details required) in order to guarantee them. Park opening dates are from 16th October to 30th June (though temperatures are very hot from April onwards) and they are also closed on Wednesday afternoons.