The town of Ranthambore has kind of become synonymous with its tiger reserve. The Ranthambore National Park is one of the famous tiger reserves in India. Most people visit the place for sightings of the mighty Bengal Tiger and to spend a few days by the forest. But there are other Ranthambore attractions that may be worth your time when you are in town. Of course; the park with its varied wildlife population is the major reason for people to visit Ranthambore.
Ranthambore National Park
Spread over 1300 sq km, this famous tiger reserve is a popular tourist attraction in India. It is home to sloth bears, leopards, spotted deer, jackal, marsh crocodile, desert fox, nilgai, Indian porcupine etc. as well. It is also a popular birding park as you can find some 320 varieties of birds here. Some popular ones are sandpiper, kingfisher, serpent eagle, sarus crane, waterfowl, flamingos, orioles, falcons, great-horned owl etc. The park also has three lakes and attracts migratory birds.
You can opt for a jeep safari in the park if you are visiting it between October to June. Such tours are ideal for smaller groups. You can book a canter safari if you are visiting the park as part of a bigger group. These tours are also available between October to June only. You can book them in advance or even on last-minute basis. But the latter option will be, of course, subject to availability.
You can spend the most time in the park and in between safari tours visit other Ranthambore attractions that are historical, spiritual, and religious in nature. There are other natural landscapes as well in and around the reserve where animals other than tigers spend most of their time.
Other Ranthambore Attractions
During the safari tours, you may come across Raj Bagh Ruins; mystical-looking stone structures half-hidden with the park’s green cover and half visible – beckoning the visitor for a closer inspection. But these are best admired from afar as tigers are known to use these as hiding places.
At the Padam Talao, you may get a glimpse of the crocodiles. It is the largest of the three lakes in the park. Kachida Valley on the park’s outskirts is the place to spot panthers.
Ranthambore Fort is also inside the national park. The fort is situated on a small hill and has seven entrances and other structures common to Rajasthani architecture style such as stone paths, domes, water tanks, thick walls, massive gates, and temples. The Ranthambore Fort is part of ‘Hills Fort of Rajasthan’ recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Its location amidst a green cover makes it even more alluring.
Trinetra Ganesh Temple is housed inside the fort. It is said to be the only temple in the world to have the entire family of Lord Ganesh represented here. The Trinetra refers to the deity’s three eyes; again, not a common representation of Ganesha. It is said to be constructed around the year 1299. This temple is also famous for receiving wedding invites. Yes, the people of some Rajasthani communities send the first wedding invites to the Trinetra Ganesh Temple in Ranthambore. The temple’s deity also receives other invitations and letters for help regarding different matters. And all requests and invitations are read aloud to the deity! During Ganesh Chaturthi (falling on 31st August in 2022); the darshan crowd can be large. If you wish to avoid it, plan a trip to Ranthambore any other time of the year.
How to reach Ranthambore: You can take flights to Delhi and then reach Sawai Madhopur by road. If you wish to explore nearby cities such as Jaipur and then visit Ranthambore; it is quite easy to do so. Jaipur is at a distance of around 180 km. So, you can travel to Ranthambore by road or train once you reach the Pink City. Ranthambore is well-connected via road from Agra, Delhi, Bharatpur, and Ahmedabad. If you are visiting India from the US, you can book cheap flights to major cities via Indian Eagle. You can then take a flight to Jaipur from various locations and visit Ranthambore.
The best time to visit Ranthambore is between October to March (if you want pleasant weather). But you can easily visit it at other times of the year as well. For safari tours, it is best to inquire about the timings and availability in advance and then plan your trip to Ranthambore accordingly.
All Ranthambore attractions are worth a visit. You can plan a trip to this town along with your Rajasthan tour especially if you are also visiting Jaipur.
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