India is unique in the richness and diversity of its vegetation and wildlife. India's national parks and wild life sanctuaries (including bird sanctuaries) from Ladakh in Himalayas to Southern tip of Tamil Nadu, are outstanding and the country continues to "WOW" the tourists with its rich bio-diversity and heritage. Wildlife sanctuaries in India attracts people from all over the world as the rarest of rare species are found here. With 96 national parks and over 500 wildlife sanctuaries, the range and diversity of India's wildlife heritage is matchless. Some of the important sanctuaries in India are The Jim Corbett Tiger Reserve – Uttaranchal, Kanha National Park and Bandhavgarh National Park in Madhya Pradesh, Ranthambhor National Park - Sawai Madhopur, Gir National Park - Sasangir (Gujarat) etc. Supporting a great variety of mammals and over 585 species of birds, India's first national park, the Corbett was established in the foothills of Himalayas.
Wildlife lovers will be excited to see magnificent Bird Sanctuary at Bharatpur, Rajasthan as it is the second habitat in the world that is visited by the Siberian Cranes in winter and it provides a vast breeding area for the native water birds.
In the Indian deserts, the most discussed bird is the Great Indian bustard. In western Himalayas, one can see birds like Himalayan monal pheasant, western tragopan, koklass, white crested khalij pheasant, griffon vultures, lammergiers, choughs, ravens. In the Andaman and Nicobar region, about 250 species and sub species of birds are found, such as rare Narcondum horn bill, Nicobar pigeon and megapode.
While the national park and sanctuaries of northern and central India are better known, there are quite a few parks and sanctuaries in South India, too. For e.g. , Madumalai in Tamil Nadu and Bandipur Tiger Reserve and Nagahole National Park in Karnataka.
A tour of Indian wildlife sanctuaries and national parks is a fabulous experience. Contrary to the African Safari, the vegetation and terrain in India is such that wild animals are often solitary or in small herds, elusive and shy. Ranges of Safari Packages are on offer, courtesy the tourism departments of states as well as tour and travel agencies. These Safari / Safari Packages are unique and unparalleled. These Safaris facilitate seeing a tiger, a rhinoceros or a herd of wild elephants.
India has unmatched variety of flora and fauna that makes it extensively different from the rest of the world. Tourists visiting for wildlife tour in India, will enjoy during any season, but to experience migrating birds, tiger, leopard, barasingha and other rare species, then winter is the best season to visit sanctuaries especially for those tourists coming for wildlife tour in India. Due to water scarcity in the hot weather, animals come out in herd in search of water, therefore most of the sanctuaries are closed during summer season. Tourists can opt for jungle safari in an open jeep but the experience on elephants back is overwhelming.
Wildlife Conservation Society(WCS) India in association with other NGO partners and tribal people, is making every possible effort to develop new models of wildlife conservation to preserve India's most treasured fauna and to protect the environment.