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Leopard crouching behind branch
16 February, 20244 minute read

Wild wonders of India: Exploring wildlife on safari

Beyond India's buzzing cities, delicious spicy food, and diverse cultures lies an impressive array of wildlife waiting to be discovered. Our Wild India tour takes you into the heart of the parks said to have inspired Rudyard Kipling’s The Jungle Book. While the iconic Bengal tiger reigns supreme on our India safaris, keep an eye out for sloth bears dozing on rocky outcrops, crocodiles gliding gently through the water, and elusive leopards stealthily stalking their prey. Plus, spend an evening stargazing with a local expert who will reveal the wonders of the Milky Way.

People star-gazing at night sky

Our holidays are guided by some of the most passionate and knowledgeable tour managers in the world. We chat to one, Yajuvendra Singh – who often takes our customers on our India tours – to hear about their own experience with wildlife in India. 

What do you love about India?

India's diverse landscape stretches from the Trans-Himalayan region of Ladakh in the North to the dry deserts and salt pans in the west, and further to the tropical rainforests in the south and northeast, accompanied by the green woodlands of Kanha. Every few hundred kilometres reveal changes in scenery, wildlife, people, languages, and culinary delights. This is what I admire about our country the most.

Can you share some memorable wildlife experiences you've had?

Answering this question is difficult for me, given my fortunate encounters with wildlife over the years. However, there are some moments that’ll remain etched in my memory forever. One such experience was witnessing three tigers engaged in a fierce fight for six hours in Kanha in 2020. Another remarkable sighting was a snow leopard hunting Urial, a wild sheep, in the cold deserts of Ladakh. I also watched grey wolves attempt to hunt cranes in the grasslands of Gujarat and I also caught a fleeting glimpse of the Asiatic Golden Cat, one of the rarest wild cats in the world, in the evergreen temperate forests of Northeast India.

Bengal Tiger, Ranthambore

Why is the wildlife experience in India so different to other parts of the world?

In contrast to Africa, where animal sightings are helped by savanna vegetation and a high density of wildlife, in India, the challenge lies in thick and dense habitats with smaller populations. Locating animals becomes a careful search, especially considering that many species in India tend to be very shy and skittish.

How has your love for wildlife influenced your role as a tour manager?

For someone like me, who has longed to be immersed in the wilderness since childhood, pursuing a career in this field was a natural choice. To gain an insight into animal behaviour, I served as a naturalist guide across four parks in central India for over a decade. This not only enriched my understanding of wildlife but also exposed me to a diverse range of tourists from around the world. It became apparent that my true passion lies in sharing information about these incredible creatures with others. Even today, my holidays revolve around visits to various National Parks across India. As I write this, I’m currently in South India on a short break from assignments, and just this morning, a pack of eight Indian Wild Dogs, also known as Dholes, was seen chasing deer in our backyard.

Any lesser-known wildlife gems you'd recommend?

Certainly! A journey to Ladakh's Transhimalayan region in search of the elusive Snow Leopard, exploring the flood plains of Assam in Northeast India to catch a glimpse of the unique One-Horned Rhino, and for enthusiasts of smaller wildlife like butterflies and frogs, a visit to any of India's rainforests during the monsoons is a must. 

One-horned Rhino, India

How do you ensure Titan’s wildlife holidays in India are not only exciting but also sustainable?

Sustainability is a fundamental aspect of Titan's wildlife holidays in India. For instance, the lodges we select have nearly 60% local staff, and our commitment extends to sourcing farm produce within a 60-kilometre radius. The safari experience involves local residents driving jeeps, and our park guides, who come from villages on the outskirts of national parks, ensure an authentic and community-centric adventure.

How can travellers make the most of their wildlife experience in India?

For an inspirational wildlife holiday in India, consider these tips: Equip yourself with binoculars and a camera featuring a good zoom lens to capture lasting memories. Before you go, you can familiarise yourself with the diverse flora and fauna of the region. Show support for conservation initiatives and gain insights into local efforts to protect wildlife. Patience is crucial for wildlife encounters, so observe quietly. Follow ethical wildlife viewing practices, ensuring a safe distance, and avoiding disruptions. Opt for eco-friendly lodges or accommodations promoting sustainable practices. Embrace the local culture to add depth to your overall wildlife experience.

Find out more about our Wild India tour here or our other wildlife tours in India. Alternatively, call our travel advisors for more information.

Joanne_Johnston bio photo

Joanne’s jam-packed travel journal includes trekking through jungles in Borneo, hiking in national parks in Canada, and learning the art of Byrek-making (a traditional spinach and cheese pie) in Albania. When she's not travelling, she’s busy blogging about motherhood, reading to her adorable twin girls and dreaming up new adventures to take them on.

Joanne Johnston | About the author

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