Bandipur…a great weekend getaway

For those tired of the urban jungle, Bangalore offers many getaways to the real one, just a few hours’ drive away. Amongst these is Bandipur Forest Reserve

We made it to Bandipur in about 4 hours, even though we battled fairly heavy traffic on the way out of Bangalore. On the way out, we took the NICE road, but on the way back we took the more scenic regular highway.

Here’s a sample of the lovely road to Bandipur, with the mountains looming:

The road ahead...

And here’s the sunset in the forest:

Sunset in Bandipur

The “access” advantage of Bandipur is that it lies on the road from Mysore to Udhagamandalam (Ooty), so getting there even by bus is pretty easy. KSRTC runs a Mayura bus service which is very comfortable.

Two of the good resorts to stay in are Jungle Lodges and Resorts, Bandipur property and Tusker Trails . Though I am a staunch JLR fan, this time (the last of the summer holidays) the property was fully booked, so we chose Tusker Trails.

Both resorts have commissioned artists to paint wildlife murals on the walls of their guest rooms. You can read my account of these murals at JLR Bandipur at

http://deponti.livejournal.com/141404.html

(This article was also featured in the Deccan Herald.)

We found this resort, too, excellent; in fact, there was a snafu about our room bookings with the wrong date having been mentioned in our booking voucher, but the manager, Mr Gopi, who has been there for a long time now, was most helpful in sorting it out, inviting us to lunch while we waited!

Apart from the forest safaris and treks, the nearby Gopalaswmay Temple at Gopalaswamy Betta is well worth a visit, and several other wildlife reserves are within reach of the avid enthusiast with time to spare.

There are a few other resorts in Bandipur but only JLR and Tusker Trails have the authority to take safaris into the jungle, and are very comfortable too. So my recommendation would be one of these two!

Here are a few pictures of what we saw at Bandipur on our visit there last weekend, which made it such a memoralble one for us. This, in spite of missing a sighting of a tiger, AND of a leopard, by a few minutes!

Changeable Hawk Eagle:

Changeable Hawk Eagle eye

Crested Serpent Eagle:

Crested Serpent Eagle side pose

The Indian Mongoose:

Mongoose

The Pond Terrapin:

Pond Terrapin peeping out

Mendicants at the Gopalasamy Temple:

Mendicants at Gopalaswamy Temple Gopalaswamy Betta

The Monitor Lizard:

Monitor Lizard

The Indian Roller:

Indian Roller State Bird of Karnataka

I strongly recommend Bandipur as a green getaway that will bring you back with your mind and heart refreshed!

2 Comments so far

  1. Ravi (unregistered) on May 29th, 2007 @ 5:46 pm

    Deepa-avare!
    Good to see you travelling here and there and sharing your experiences with us!
    Thanks,
    Ravi


  2. Karthik.B (unregistered) on May 29th, 2007 @ 6:41 pm

    Gopal Swamy Betta aka GSB awesome place. Great blog.



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