What better way to spend a winter weekend than by admiring natural beauty and catching a glimpse of wildlife? This is the season when the temperatures are mild and the jungles are more accessible.
With the easy availability of self-driven cars (rentals), one can plan a trip with friends, family or fellow wildlife enthusiasts and embark into some of Karnataka’s pristine eco-systems. Here are some top recommendations.
1] Bannerghatta National Park
Bannerghatta National Park has a safari section and a zoological park which make an interesting day trip option, ideal for those who don’t have much free time. The drive from Bangalore is a short 36-km route south of the city.
The butterfly park here is a very unique attraction and visitors can also enjoy a boat ride on the small enclosed lake. Other highlights of Bannerghatta Park include a children’s play area, an aquarium, a snake and crocodile section, and a museum.
It is a good place to sight the big cats – the tiger and lion safari here is very famous. Other species that one can see include sloth bears, monitor lizards, elephants, and leopards.
Bannerghatta National Park also has some good hiking routes for those who want to explore up close. Hajamana Kallu is a rock formation that attracts climbers from the city and beyond. The trek to Mirza Hill is also recommended.
2] Bandipur National Park
Established as a national park more than 40 years ago, Bandipur is now one of the major tiger hotspots in the country. This vast expanse of wilderness is an exciting 220-km drive from Bangalore and stops on the way include the beautiful city of Mysore.
The National Park itself is set at the lower foothills of the Western Ghats, and visitors will be overwhelmed by the picturesque scenery wherever they turn.
The dry deciduous forest allows for good animal sightings, especially in the colder months. One cannot drive through the reserve an early start from Bangalore is always recommended.
The tiger is the main attraction here but there are several other beautiful and rare species found here, including the elusive jackal, the Indian giant squirrel and many herds of elephants. Bird watchers will enjoy sighting the different feathered species here such as drongos, vultures, fish owls, and hawk-eagles.
3] Choose self drive for an uncompromised experience
A road trip into the jungles can only be relished when done on one’s own terms. There will be many enroute attractions and beautiful views on the way, not to mention roadside stalls serving tasty snacks. This is why discerning travellers book self drive cars in Bangalore for such adventures.
App-based Zoomcar is a preferred platform. Travellers get to choose from a wide range of vehicles – the latest hatchbacks, sedans, and SUVs.
Rates are competitive – cheaper than getting chauffeured transport for such a long duration. Another very driver-friendly feature is the 24/7 on-road support – a reassuring provision for long distance trips.
The fascinating secrets of Karnataka’s mountains and forests are there to explore. Get behind the wheel and enjoy the experience of a lifetime.