- Lions lounging in Gujarat
- Jungle safaris
- UNESCO-listed Khajuraho
- Kanha National Park
- Spotted deer
Wild about India
- Small Group 20 or less
- VIP door to door
- Half board plus
A jungle wildlife adventure
Embark on an unforgettable expedition into the heart of India’s wildlife-rich jungles where the Royal Bengal tiger is king. Explore the acclaimed national parks of Pench, Kanha and Bandhavgarh on 9 included 4x4 safaris for the best chance of sighting this majestic yet famously elusive big cat, along with such other exotic wildlife as gaur, hyenas and eagles.
12 nights in hotels and 1 in flight
33 meals: 12 breakfasts (B), 9 lunches (L) and 12 dinners (D)
Saga tour manager
- Return flights and transfers
- Porterage at all hotels
- Tourist visa for full British citizens resident in the UK
Included excursions and visits
- Elephanta Island UNESCO-listed rock caves
- Kanha village walk
- Tour of the UNESCO-listed Khajuraho Western Temples
- Three 4x4 safaris in Pench National Park
- Two 4x4 safaris in Kanha National Park
- Four 4x4 safaris in Bandhavgarh National Park
Use of audio headsets on guided tours
Breathtakingly beautiful and simultaneously awe inspiring, the tiger has been immortalised in poetry, prose and art. The primary species to be found in India is the Bengal tiger where numbers have diminished to around 2,500 left in the wild. Since the 1970s the Indian government has been involved in the conservation of these magnificent animals who sadly are haunted by threats from the illegal wildlife trade and loss of their natural prey. But the tiger is not the only one under threat …The endangered Asiatic lion is now only to be found in Gir National Park (which you can visit on an extension to your main holiday). Smaller than their African cousins, the males have a shorter mane and tend to be solitary except when breeding. With an estimated population of only some 523 left, these protected lions should remain ‘kings of the jungle’.
- Day 1 UK to Mumbai
- Day 2 Mumbai
- Day 3 Elephanta Island
- Day 4 Nagpur to Pench
- Day 5 Pench National Park
- Day 6 Pench to Kanha
- Day 7 Kanha
- Day 8 Kanha
- Day 9 Kanha to Bandhavgarh
- Day 10 - 11 Bandhavgarh
- Day 12 Bandhavgarh to Khajuraho
- Day 13 Khajuraho to Delhi
- Day 14 Delhi to UK
Taj Mahal Tower Wing
Pench Jungle Camp
Chitvan Jungle Lodge
Day 1 UK to Mumbai
After taking your included VIP door-to-door travel service to the airport, fly overnight to Mumbai.
Day 2 Mumbai
Stay two-nights at the 5-star Taj Mahal Tower Wing (4Q). D
Day 3 Elephanta Island
From the monumental Gateway of India, set off across the Sea of Oman on an hour-long boat ride to visit Elephanta Island, which was named by the Portuguese after a large stone elephant which originally stood near the landing site and is now housed in the Victoria and Albert museum on the mainland.
Catch a road train to the end of the jetty where steps lead up the hillside to the 5th to 6th-century rock-carved caves where you can venture inside and marvel at the ancient sculptured panels of Maheshmurti, the three-headed image of Lord Shiva, described by UNESCO as a “perfect expression” of Indian art. B, D
Day 4 Nagpur to Pench
Fly to Nagpur (90 minutes) and continue by road to Pench (52 miles, two hours).
Stay two nights at the 4-star Pench Jungle Camp (4Q), set within the national park’s outer edge. This pastoral jungle-style safari camp is a luxurious retreat from which you can explore Pench National Park. B, L, D
Day 5 Pench National Park
Travel into the forests of Madhya Pradesh that inspired Rudyard Kipling’s ‘The Jungle Book’ in hope of spotting a real-life version of Sher Khan on your first two safaris by 4x4. Along with the Bengal tiger, other elusive predators that roam free in Pench National Park include leopards and wolves. It’s also a birdwatchers’ paradise with around 285 resident and migratory species, including endangered white-rumped and king vultures. B, L, D
Day 6 Pench to Kanha
Return to the heart of Pench National Park for your third 4x4 safari before travelling to Kanha (106 miles, fours hours) for three-nights at the 4-star Chitvan Jungle Lodge (4Q). B, L, D
Day 7 Kanha
Your fourth safari explores the vast bamboo and sal forests of Kanha National Park which are punctuated by the occasional white kulu ‘ghost’ tree.
Herds of swamp deer grazing in the meadows are a result of its successful preservation efforts while other wildlife you may spot include sloth bears, four-horned antelope and gaur, the largest wild animal in the park. You may even spy the lesser-spotted rhesus macaque and, of course, the Bengal tiger, the park’s most famous resident. B, L, D
Day 8 Kanha
Look forward to your fifth safari drive and village tour this morning, followed by an afternoon visit to the Manegaon Tribal Village to experience the culture of tribal life. B, L, D
Day 9 Kanha to Bandhavgarh
Travel to Bandhavgarh (121 miles, five hours) for a three-night stay at the 3-star King’s Lodge (3Q) or Bandhav Vilas (3Q). B, L, D
Day 10 - 11 Bandhavgarh
Once the hunting preserve of the Maharaja of Rewa, the park is known for its higher than average number of Bengal tigers, increasing your odds of sighting these magnificent beasts prowling through the thickets on your final four morning and afternoon safaris. You may also see striking white tigers, common langurs, Asiatic jackals, grey mongoose and jungle cats. B, L, D
Day 12 Bandhavgarh to Khajuraho
Continue to Khajuraho (143 miles, five hours). Stay overnight at the 4-star Radisson Jass (4Q), Khajuraho, located in an area rich in Hindu and Jain temples, including the Western Group of Temples, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. These temples were created by the Chandella dynasty in the 9th century and belong to two different religions: Hinduism and Jainism. Only a quarter of the original 80 temples remain but those still standing exhibit some of India’s greatest art. These show various scenes thought to represent the marriage of Shiva and Parvati, including a small fraction that portray more intimate topics!
This afternoon look forward to visiting these temples, regarded as some of the most architecturally important in India. B, D
Day 13 Khajuraho to Delhi
Travel to Jhansi pausing en route at Orchha (133 miles, five hours) where you can enjoy an included lunch and an orientation tour, time permitting.
Upon arrival at Jhansi, board the train for your onward journey to Delhi where you stay overnight at the 5-star Novotel Aerocity, Delhi (4Q). B, L, D
Day 14 Delhi to UK
Depart early for your journey to the airport and flight home to the UK. B
Big Cats of Gujarat
Pre-holiday extension - Including 4 breakfasts, 3 lunches and 3 dinners
After an overnight stay in Mumbai before your tour, fly to Gujarat. Spend three-nights at the 4-star Lion Safari Camp (3Q) in Gir National Park, the last refuge of the Asiatic lion and where you can enjoy four included 4x4 safaris. As well as being the only place you can see these magnificent beasts in the wild, Gir provides sanctuary for 38 species of mammals, around 300 species of birds and 37 species of reptiles making it a wildlife lovers paradise. It’s also home to the largest leopard population of any park in India, making it the ideal place to see big cats of a different kind.
The Lion Safari Camp comprises 21 air-conditioned tents, each of which have a furnished bedroom with telephone and coffee machine as well as an en suite bathroom with a shower.
Travelling in shared 4x4s, enjoy morning and afternoon safaris when jungle wildlife is most active. Afternoon visits tend to end at sunset when you can witness the skies deepen in colour before nightfall.