Weather :

Timings : The reserve closes at 6:00 PM

Time Required : 1 day

Entry Fee : Entry: Free,
Jungle Safari: INR 100 - 600 depending upon the distance

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Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve, Bandipur National Park Overview

Sprawled across the lush green hills of Nilgiris in the Western Ghats, Nilgiri Biosphere reserve is an International Biosphere reserve which was recognised as the UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2012. It includes the Mudumalai, Mukurthi, Wayanad and Bandipur national parks. The biosphere encompasses the area of 5,520 sqm km and is spread across the states of Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, and Kerala. The best way to explore the wildlife of the biosphere reserve is trekking where you can enjoy not only the sights of animals from a close distance but also the splendid views of the Western Ghats.

A major part of the Nilgiri biosphere is reserved under Project Tiger and Project Elephant. Hence, it is an essential habitat for two of the most important species of fauna in India. The elephants and tigers remain the unmatched attraction of the place. Apart from this, the reserve is famous for the Indian leopard (and black panther), gaur, Indian elephant, mongoose, Malabar giant squirrel, lion-tailed macaque, grey langur and Nilgiri tahr. The national park is also famous for its flora which includes a variety of plants and orchids. Out of these, a few can only be found at Nilgiri biosphere reserves.

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Wildlife Sanctuaries Under Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve

The Nilgiri biosphere reserve encompasses various national parks and wildlife parks under its circumference. Nilgiris Biosphere Reserve covers an area of 5000 square kilometres of the Nilgiri hill ranges its surrounding environments in the states of Tamil Nadu (2537.6 km²), Kerala (1455.4 km²), and Karnataka (1527.4 km²).

Tamil Nadu

1. Madumalai National Park and Wildlife Sanctuary

It is known to habitat the Indian elephants and Royal Bengal Tigers. Now it has been declared as a Tiger reserve. The wildlife sanctuary is located 150 km from the Coimbatore city in Tamil Nadu.

2. Sathyamangalam Wildlife Sanctuary

It is a protected tiger reserve and a significant wildlife corridor between the eastern and the Western Ghats. It was declared as a sanctuary on 3 November 2008. These tropical dried forests are home to blackbucks, leopards, royal Bengal tigers, spotted deer, and many more.

3. Mukurthi National Park

Since 1 July 2012, the national park is called as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It shelters the endangered species of Asian Elephants, Royal Bengal Tigers, Nilgiri Langur and Nilgiri Tahr. It is also known for its grasslands and the variety of endemic plants.


4. Nagarhole National Park

Located in the Kodagu district and Mysore, it is the 37th Project Tiger Reserve. It has a vibrant forest cover comprising of hills, streams, waterfalls, and valleys. It has maintained a healthy predator-prey ratio and has many Indian Bison, elephants, tigers, wild boar, barking deer, etc.

5. Bandipur National Park

Bandipur National Park in Karnataka is a declared national park under Project Tiger. Apart from tigers, it is famous for its biomes and dry deciduous forests and the variety of fauna such as muggers, Indian rock pythons, Spectacled Cobra, four-horned antelopes.

6. BRT Wildlife Sanctuary (Biligiri Ranganatha Temple)

It is a protected national park under the Wildlife Protection act 1972. Situated at the confluence of Eastern and the Western Ghats it has a unique combination of ecosystems. The area is covered with both tropical broadleaf forest and dry deciduous forest. It has wild dogs, leopards, tigers, lesser cats, giant flying squirrel, and many more species of different animals.

7. Kabini Wildlife Sanctuary

It is the most popular wildlife destination in Southern India. The dam across the river near Beechanahalli is a unique attraction in Kabini. Leopard, sambhar, panther, spotted deer, cheetal, and around 250 species of birds are found here.


8. Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary

It is the second largest wildlife park in Kerala which is reserved under Project Elephant. Elephants, tigers, jungle cats, civet cats, bisons, deer, monitor lizards, Peacocks, cuckoos, woodpeckers, jungle fowls and a variety of snakes are found here.

Flora and Fauna

Located on the picturesque and naturally rich hills of the Western and Eastern Ghats, the Nilgiri biosphere reserve is abundant in the variety of species of flora and fauna alike.

Flora- There are about 3,300 species of plants found in reserve, out of which 132 are endemic, and few others can only be found at Nilgiri biosphere reserve. You will find Adenoon, Baeolepis, Frerea, Jarodina, Calacanthus, Poeciloneuron, Wagatea, Thrixspermum, Vanda, and Sholas, etc. Of the 175 species of orchids found in the Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve, eight are endemic.

Fauna- The reserve is a habitat for more than 900 varieties of animal species. It includes 100 species of animals, 350 of birds, 80 species of reptiles, 39 variety of fish, 319 of butterflies and 31 amphibians. You might witness Royal Bengal Tiger, Indian Elephants, Nilgiri Tahr, Gray Langur, Malabar giant squirrel, Lion-tailed Macaque, Gaur, etc. The species of birds include Racket Tailed Drongo, Golden back woodpecker, Fairy Bluebird, Pond Heron, Nilgiri Pigeon, Black & White Flycatcher, Nilgiri Thrush, Grey-headed canary flycatcher, etc.

Some national parks and wildlife sanctuaries give you a chance to observe nature from a closer distance by organising safaris. The price of safari varies from place to place.

Tips For Visiting Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve

1. Do not feed or hit the animals to gain their attention.
2. Do not litter inside the reserve.

How To Reach Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve

The biosphere is divided into various national parks, spreading across the states of Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, and Kerala. Depending on which national park you want to visit, you can hire a direct taxi or take a bus to the nearest bus stop to the reserve.

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