In Gujarat, India’s most westerly State, we will spend time exploring the Little Rann of Kutch. Species here can include Pallid Scops Owl, Sykes’s Nightjar and Macqueen’s Bustard. Sociable Lapwing can sometimes be seen in agricultural areas. Other local avian delights include Indian Courser, both Oriental and Small Pratincoles and large flocks of Common and Demoiselle Cranes sharing their arid home with the attractive and range-restricted Asiatic Wild Ass as an added bonus.
At Velavadar our focus will be Indian Grey Wolf and Striped Hyena. You can’t help but notice the hundreds of elegant Blackbuck, Nilgai (antelope) and Harriers. At Gir National Park the top predator is the globally threatened Asiatic Lion and you also have a good chance of seeing a Leopard, though it goes without saying that no wild animal sighting can be guaranteed.
After exploring Gujarat you’ll need an internal flight (easy and straight forward to book) to Central India and the heart of Tiger country to finish your tour by exploring Tadoba National Park. Tadoba’s increasing Tiger population is a great success story, with 26 cubs reported to have been born in the Tiger Reserve in 2011. However, there is always a threat to this most special cat from illegal poaching. Tadoba-Andhari Tiger Reserve, situated in the Chandrapur District of Maharashtra, spans over 625 square kilometres and incorporates both Tadoba National Park (which became Maharashtra’s first national park in 1955) and Andhari Wildlife Sanctuary. More recently it became one of India’s 28 Project Tiger Reserves in 1993. As many as 56 Tigers are reputed to survive here, plus many other great mammals such as Leopard, Sloth Bear, Gaur, Wild Dog, Striped Hyena, Jungle Cat and Chousingha (Four-horned Antelope), not to mention a rich birdlife.
There are many ways to extend this tour, so please contact us for details. Also we plan to run this tour in 2017, so do get in touch to register your interest.
Itinerary and price
Small Group tour: 27th Nov – 9th Dec 2016
Maximum group size: 8 plus guide
Day 1: Flight to be organised by you
For help with your flight arrangements and to receive a no obligation quote, you can complete the enquiry form on our website or call 0800 280 8947 to speak to a flight advisor at StudentUniverse (in partnership with Gapyear.com), part of the Flight Centre Travel Group, a leading retailer of airfares and worldwide flights.
Day 2: Mumbai/Delhi - Ahmedabad - Little Rann of Kutch
Meals: Lunch and dinner at Rann Riders.
Your flight (likely to be from Mumbai, but there are options via Delhi also) should arrive early in the morning at Ahmedabad. You will be welcomed outside Ahmedabad Airport by our representative who will be holding a Wild About Travel placard. From the airport we will drive (via a local hotel to pick up any fellow travellers) to our first wildlife destination – the Little Rann of Kutch. The drive should take around 2 ½ hours. Arrive late morning at your resort in Dasada. Check in is officially 1200 hours, but earlier if rooms are available. Subject to time you may be able to explore the grounds and local area with your guide. Sometimes the scarce Pallid Scops Owl can be seen locally and many other birds on a small water body next to the resort. Have a leisurely lunch, then in the afternoon enjoy the first of four jeep safaris to see Asiatic Wild Ass, Demoiselle and Common Cranes, Pelicans, Storks, Bee-eaters, Chestnut-bellied Sandgrouse and potentially the endangered Sociable Lapwing. In the evening it should be possible to see Sykes’s Nightjar. Night at Rann Riders, AC Room or AC Huts
Day 3: Little Rann of Kutch
Meals: Breakfast, lunch and dinner
Enjoy a morning and an afternoon jeep safari today. Night at Rann Riders, AC Room or AC Huts
Day 4: Little Rann of Kutch - Gir
Meals: Breakfast and packed lunch at Rann Riders with dinner at Gir birding Lodge
This morning enjoy a final safari to the Little Rann of Kutch in what is a fascinating habitat with several great birds to see and other mammals which may include Desert Fox. After the jeep safari you’ll set off for Gir National Park, taking a packed lunch with you. Expect the journey to take approximately 7 hours. Arrive at Gir and check in at Gir Birding Lodge. Night: Gir Birding Lodge, Deluxe Cottage
Day 5: Gir
Meals: Breakfast, lunch and dinner
Enjoy morning and afternoon jeep safaris inside Gir National Park, the only place in the world where you can see Asiatic Lions in the wild. The Park boasts a healthy Leopard population too and you may also see Chinkara (Indian Gazelle) and Chousingha which is the world’s only four-horned antelope, along with Mottled Wood-Owl, White-bellied Minivet and Painted Sandgrouse if you are lucky. Night: Gir Birding Lodge. Deluxe Cottage
Day 6: Gir
Meals: Breakfast, lunch and dinner
Two more safaris today will increase your chance of seeing the key mammal species. You’ll also be able to look for other birds which may include Tawny-bellied Babbler, Crested Treeswift and various birds of prey and waterbirds around the lake. In between relax in the grounds of Gir Birding Lodge.
Night: Gir Birding Lodge. Deluxe Cottage
Day 7: Gir - Velavadar
Meals: Breakfast at Gir, packed lunch from Gir with dinner at Blackbuck Lodge
After a final morning jeep safari inside Gir National Park you’ll leave (late morning) and drive to Velavadar (6 – 7 hours), stopping briefly on the way for a break if needed. The drive will be well worth it and you’ll realise this when you check in and relax in the beautiful Blackbuck Safari Lodge. Note: Indian Grey Wolf has been spotted from the lodge itself and Mongoose can be seen in the grounds along with the scarce Stoliczka’s Bushchat (depending on the time of year). Night: Blackbuck Safari Lodge, AC Cottage
Days 8 and 9: Velavadar
Meals: Breakfast, lunch and dinner at Blackbuck Lodge
Enjoy morning and afternoon jeep safaris on both days inside Velavadar National Park. Return to the lodge mid-morning and then head out again in the afternoon. In between jeep safaris you’ll be able to explore the area around the lodge. Velavadar undoubtedly is one of the best places in India to look for Indian Grey Wolf and Striped Hyena and whilst we can’t guarantee sightings, many of our groups have successfully seen one or both of these top predators. An initial glance at the large gatherings of Nilgai and Blackbuck and you could almost feel you are on a game drive in Africa. The site also boasts an impressive Harrier roost in the winter months and you’ll see many of them quartering the grasslands in search of prey throughout the day. Night: Blackbuck Lodge, AC Cottage
Day 10: Bhavnagar – Mumbai – Nagpur – Tadoba
Meals: Breakfast at Blackbuck lodge and dinner at Svasara Resort
Today will require a very early departure from Velavadar to drive to Bhavnagar in order to board an internal flight to Mumbai, then on to Nagpur. We will advise you of the appropriate internal flights required which will be easy to book via the internet. On arrival in Nagpur our driver will meet you outside Nagpur Airport (look for name on a placard) and from here you’ll be driven with your guide (3 hours) to Tadoba National Park. Check in at your lodge and relax for the remainder of the day. Night: Svasara Jungle Lodge (Deluxe Cottage)
Days 11 and 12: Tadoba
Meals: Breakfast, lunch and dinner
Explore the best parts of Tadoba Andhari Tiger Reserve and National Park on morning and afternoon jeep safari drives (five over three days) with your guide, the mandatory forest department guide and/or lodge naturalist guide. Sloth Bears, whilst difficult to see at many National Parks, are sometimes seen at Tadoba. They tend to prefer the more hilly and rocky areas of Katezari but they can be seen at other locations too. During the morning and afternoon safari drives you will be able to visit various areas (subject to National Park rules) which may include Tadoba and Telia Lakes, Pandharpauni Meadows, Jamun Bodhi and Vasant Bandhara areas of Tadoba. Relax between safari drives and in the evenings at Svasara Resort. Nights: Svasara Jungle Lodge (Deluxe Cottage)
Day 13: Tadoba – Nagpur – Mumbai
Meals: Breakfast and lunch (or packed lunch) at Svasara Resort Enjoy a morning safari inside the National Park. Then late morning you will be transferred to Nagpur in good time to board an internal flight to Mumbai. The flight we propose (subject to confirmation at the time of booking) is likely to leave Nagpur mid to late afternoon and it will connect with your international flight from Mumbai which we will help you to plan. Flights are to be booked by yourselves and dinner this evening would be in Mumbai (on direct payment). From here you’ll be able to connect with your international flight home. If you require us to book you a night at a hotel in Mumbai with transfers to connect with an international flight the next day please let us know and we can provide you with a supplement.
Prices, the names of hotels and a list of inclusions/exclusions are shown below.
Price per person:
£1920 (for a group of four or five + guide)
£1855 (for group of six or seven + guide)
£1630 (for group of eight + guide)
Single room supplement £535
Price is based on the following hotels:
||No. of nights
||Rann Riders, Air-conditioned Cottage or Hut
||Gir Birding Lodge, Deluxe Cottage
||Blackbuck Lodge, Deluxe Cottage
||Svasara Jungle Lodge, Deluxe Cottage
- Accommodation in the above mentioned hotels/lodges/resorts with meals as listed
- All mentioned transfers by air-conditioned vehicle
- English speaking guide from Day 2 till your arrival at Nagpur Airport on Day 13
- Four jeep safaris in the Little Rann, five jeep safaris in Gir National Park and four jeep safaris in Velavadar National Park by exclusive jeep with entrance fee included
- Five jeep safaris inside Tadoba National Park
- All currently applicable taxes
- Any International airfare to/from India including International airport tax
- Internal flights within India
- Meals not specified
- Tourist visa and travel insurance
- Camera fee
- Any additional taxes levied by the Government of India on the tourism sector in future
- Any expenses of personal nature such as hard/soft drinks, laundry, phone/fax calls, tips etc.
- Any item not mentioned in the price includes section.
- Any increase in the entrance fee to National Parks or Sanctuaries in the future. The price is based on the current entrance fee
- Cost incidental to any change in the itinerary/stay on account of flight cancellation due to bad weather, ill health, roadblocks and/or any factors beyond control