One of the places in Karnataka where one can enjoy wildlife and get immersed in the lap of nature is Kabini. It is about 80 kms from
Mysore and located inside the . It is named after Kabini, a tributary of Kaveri. We visited Kabini a while ago and stayed at the Jungle Lodges Resort. For a long time, this used to be the only place to stay at Kabini and therefore always heavily booked. Now there are other resorts too but if one is planning to stay at the Jungle Lodges, it is advisable to book well in advance because it is still sought after. Nagarhole National Park
We started at around 8 am from
in a big group and after taking some breaks reached Jungle Lodges by lunch time. We were in a Volvo bus, yet we could feel the bumpy ride stretching the last 10-15 kms. If one is traveling alone, it might be better to start before sunrise and stop at places along the way to Bangalore like Channapatna rather than spending time in the traffic jam on Mysore Mysore Road.
We took the standard day package they had on offer which included a safari ride, a coracle ride and a film about wild life conservation in the evening. Given that it was our first time at Kabini, this was the best way to enjoy the place because the staff knows their job very well. After a sumptuous lunch at their Golghar and a short but much needed afternoon nap, we first went on a safari ride in their open jeep. We saw the bison, chital, langurs, crocodiles and of course, after much tracking and waiting, a few elephants. The ranger helped us to identify different birds and even some trees. He also explained to us the laws of the jungle, about the battle for survival and self-preservation at the same time a sense of harmony and understanding among different species.
When we returned in the evening, the staff had organized some activities for our group. I thought it was very nice of them to have planned for this, keeping in mind the diverse needs of our mixed group. After dinner - which was again very simple and tasty- they showed us a film by Ullas Karanth about tiger conservation and about
. The films were very well made, informative and a great tool to sensitize urban visitors like us who often take our environment for granted and are oblivious of the precarious balance our nature maintains. I remember having seen the films at other Jungle Lodges we had visited earlier and hoped that they get screened at more mainstream locations and not restricted to those visiting Jungle Lodges. Nagarhole Park
|Lone Tusker in Kabini|
We woke up early next morning and went on a boat ride in River Kabini, which is formed by the backwaters of Kabini reservoir. We were able to spot a few elephants coming out to take a sip and a dip in the river. Elephants generally wander in their herds, but we saw one lone tusker standing on the banks. We waited thinking that some more elephants would join him. After all, there are thousands of elephants deep inside Nagarhole, but we were disappointed. We also saw lots of partially submerged trees that looked absolutely brilliant. On some of these trees, birds had made nests and we could hear them chirping as they were stirring up for the day. The boat took us around all these special sights and we had enough time to take pictures from all angles.
|Submerged Trees in Kabini|
On returning, we had a heavy breakfast and checked out. Before that, we quickly went around one last time. We took some more pictures of the spectacular deciduous greenery and still waters and filled our lungs one last time with fresh air. We knew we would miss both once we were back in