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Ranthambore National Park

Ranthambore National Park

About the Ranthambore National Park

Ranthambore National Park is one of the largest and most famous national parks in northern India. It is situated in Sawai Madhopur district of southeastern Rajasthan, about 130 km from Jaipur, which is also the nearest airport. The nearest town and railway station is at Sawai Madhopur, about 11 km away.

Ranthambhore was established as the Sawai Madhopur Game Sanctuary in 1955 by the Government of India, and was declared one of the Project Tiger reserves in 1973. Ranthambhore became a national park in 1980. In 1984, the adjacent forests were declared the Sawai Man Singh Sanctuary and Keladevi Sanctuary, and in 1991 the tiger reserve was enlarged to include Sawai Man Singh and Keladevi sanctuaries.

Ranthambore wildlife sanctuary is famous for its tigers and is one of the best places in India to see these majestic predators in the jungle. Tigers can be easily spotted even during the day Time. Good time to visit Ranthambore National park is in November and May when the nature of the dry deciduous forests makes sightings common. Its deciduous forests were once a part of the magnificent jungles of Central India

jim-corbett-nation-park-tiger-reserve

In 2003 and 2004, disaster struck Ranthambhore’s tigers once again. A census conducted by the Rajasthan State Empowered committee showed that there were only 26 tigers in entire reserve and all of them were with in the national park. The other areas of the reserve were totally devoid of tigers. To quote from the report of the Tiger Task Force – “in Ranthambhore, which is now known to have lost a large number of its tigers……the threat of poaching remains…”.

In 2005, the Rajasthan and the Indian central government set up high powered committees to look into the state of Ranthambhore and to suggest measures to improve the situation. This put the spotlight back on Ranthambore and the tiger crisis in India (what is now being called the “third tiger crisis”) and since then the forest and the police department intensified the protection around the the tiger reserve. There have been no reports of tiger poaching from around Ranthambore from the beginning of 2005 and a large number of tiger cubs were born between the summer of 2005 and the summer of 2006. A very detailed census that was carried out by the Wildlife Institute of India using camera traps between 2006 and 2007 showed that there were 31 tigers in Ranthambhore national park.

Terrain

The terrain of Ranthambhore tiger reserve is mostly rugged and hilly and is intimately related to the Great boundary fault.

The hills to the northwest of fault-line are the Aravalis and typically have ridges on one side and gentle slope on the other. This Aravali tract is highly undulating except for a few small plateaus and some small valleys. These valleys are teeming with wildlife and are the richest wildlife areas in the entire reserve. Most of Ranthambore national park’s tigers are found in these valleys. The highest point of this tract is Gazella peak, 507 meters above M.S.L. The lowest altitude of this tract is 244 meters above M.S.L. at Bodal. Streams flowing in northern tract form the catchment of the river Banas and streams flowing in southern tract drain directly in the river Chambal. Most of the streams are very short lived but the streams facing sharp ridges maybe perennial, as the folded impervious rocky strata beneath, does not permit the water to percolate.

The hills south west of Great boundary fault are the Vindhyas. The sand stone beds of these hills are flat-topped and form extensive table lands known as “Dangs”. These dangs rise abruptly from flat ground and have sandstone ridges running continuously along their edges. At places, small and short-lived streams have eroded deep, long and narrow gorges that are locally known as “Khohs”. The khohs are cool and retain moisture even in the hot summer and are main wild life areas in all the parts of Project tiger reserve. The Kela Devi sanctuary has some of the longest and the widest khos.

The ravines are prominent feature of both the rivers, the Chambal and the Banas. These ravines are formed due to sandy nature of the soil along the banks of the rivers. Along the Chambal, the ravines are as deep as 50 mts and extend up to 8 kms in length. The ravines are very important for the lesser fauna.

Jim Corbett

Climate

The Ranthambhore tiger reserve, with its sub-tropical dry climate, has three very well defined seasons – summers, winters and monsoons. October and March are the time when the weather changes from monsoons to winters and from winters to summers, respectively.

Summers start during the end of March and last through the months of April, May and June. During this season the days are very hot and dry. During May and June the maximum day temperature crosses 40 degrees Centigrade and the minimum night temperature still hovers around 30 degrees Centigrade. During the day, hot and dry winds (loo) blow. In the summers the dangs are almost totally devoid of wildlife during the day. Most of the ungulates and the large predators spend the summer months in the valleys and the khos. The maximum day temperature often crosses 45 degrees C in May and June, when the relative humidity is at its lowest.

The monsoons or the rainy season lasts from July to September. This season is warm and humid, with one or two short thundershowers a week. Often there are long periods (10 to 15 days) with no rains. During such long breaks in the monsoon rains, the weather can get very hot and humid. Droughts are a common occurrence in and around Ranthambore. During monsoons the dangs have good cover grasses and herbs and as a result the ungulates tend to concentrate on the dangs and the larger predators follow them there. The average annual rainfall is 800 mm and there are an average of 38 rainy days per year and nearly 90% of them are in the monsoon months.

The winter season lasts from November to February. The night temperature stays below 10 degrees Centigrade, while the day temperature hovers around the 20 degree Centigrade mark. There is often some rain and fog during the mid winters. During December and January the lowest night time temperature goes down to 2 degrees C.

Jim Corbett

Jeep Safari in Ranthambore

When in Ranthambore National Park, you simply cannot resist the temptation of undertaking a jeep safari. In fact, a jeep safari in Ranthambore is the best way to have a tour of the park and view its animals from a close distance.

The Ranthambore National Park does not allow the entry of private vehicles. Hence, a Ranthambore jeep safari is the best option with tourists. Jeep safaris in Ranthambore are conducted twice a day – around 7.30 am and 3 pm in winters and 6.30 am and 4 pm in summers. The duration of a safari is three hours. Open-sided jeeps are usually used during these safaris.

To book a jeep safari in Ranthambore during
 your Rajputana Splendour tour, you will have to go to the Project Tiger office near the railway station. A maximum of five passengers are allowed in a jeep. And, in a day, only six jeeps are allowed for tour of Ranthambore National Park. Hotels in the vicinity permanently book about four of these jeeps for their guests. Hence, you can often see half-empty jeeps entering the park.
Booking of a Ranthambore jeep safari can be done about a month in advance. However, for individual travelers, it is often a tedious process as you are required to give names and details of all your co-passengers. Making last minute adjustments and changes is not very feasible either.

Nevertheless, travel to Ranthambore is definitely incomplete without a jeep safari. Tourists take lot of pains to ensure that they get a seat. The driver-cum-guide gives you an insight into the national park. You can see tigers in Ranthambore sprawling across the forest, looking for its prey. These tigers are mostly seen on the banks of the lakes inside. Other animals and birds can also be easily seen during your Rajputana Splendour jeep safari in Ranthambore.

Jim Corbett

Canter Safari in Ranthambore

Centre safari is the best way to observe wildlife within Ranthambore National Park. Jeeps with groups of tourists, accompanied by a trained guide are allowed into the park at fixed times during the morning and evening. The jeeps have to follow a fixed route and leave the park by the end of the appointed time. At a given time not more 2 jeeps can travel on a particular route and more then 16 vehicles are not allowed into the park. Apart from jeeps, open vans called canters, which can carry up to 25 people, are also used to carry large groups of people into the park.
canter-safari-ranthambore
The open grasslands, forested areas and ruins of monuments within Ranthambore National park provide many opportunities for wildlife viewing while on a jeep safari of National Park Ranthambore. Tigers can be seen hunting deer, their primary prey, on the open grassy regions. A glimpse of a magnificent Royal Bengal Tiger is a sight that cannot be forgotten.

Many renowned wildlife experts and wildlife photographers have observed and photographed the tigers of Ranthambore, from jeeps within the park. Jeep safaris can also be arranged for an individual photographer or tourist, to see the tigers in their natural habitat. Since the jeeps follow fixed routes, the animals are not unduly disturbed.

Some of the rules to be observed during a jeep safari in National Park Ranthambore are:
Jeeps must leave National Park within the specified time
Playing music or making loud noises is prohibited
Carrying weapons or firearms within the park is not allowed.
Getting down from the safari vehicle and walking in the park is not allowed Smoking or drinking within the park premises is not permitted.
Littering the park with plastic bottles, tetrapacks, food wrappers or any material is not permitted .
The motto to be followed while on a jeep safari is Ranthambore National Park is ‘Take Nothing but Photographs, leave nothing but Tire Tracks.

Jim Corbett

Bird Watching Tour

Duration : 15 Nights / 16 Days’
Destinations Covered : Delhi – Jaipur – Ranthambore – Bharatpur – Agra – Khajuraho – Bandhavgarh – Kanha – Nagpur

Day 01 : Delhi
Arrive in New Delhi before or after midnight. Spend overnight at the hotel.
Hyumaun Tomb
Day 02 : Delhi
Spend morning at leisure. An afternoon sightseeing tour of New Delhi. Visiting places include India Gate, drive past President’s House, Qutab Minar & Humayun’s tomb. Overnight spend at the hotel.

Day 03 : Delhi – Jaipur
Early morning departure towards Jaipur (260-km / 6 hr). In the afternoon enjoy a guided sightseeing tour of the Pink City covering City Palace, Palace of Winds or Hawa Mahal & Jantar Mantar Observatory. Overnight spend at the hotel.

Day 04 : Jaipur – Ranthambore
Enjoy a elephant ride while visiting the Amber Fort. After lunch, a jeep safari to Ranthambore National Park (5 hr.) Arrive back to the resort in the evening. Overnight at the wildlife resort.

Day 05 : Ranthambore National Park
Enjoy the morning and evening trips in open trucks and jeeps to Ranthambore National Park and spend time tracking Tigers and viewing other wildlife attractions of the park. Overnight at the resort.

Day 06 : Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary
Have some wildlife watching early in the morning and tiger tracking in open-top trucks and jeeps. After lunch, drive to Keoladeo Ghana National Park (6 hr.) Arrive back to the resort in the evening. Overnight spent at the hotel.
Barattpur bird
Day 07 : Bharatpur – Agra
Enjoy a day inside the Bharatpur bird sanctuary on a cycle rickshaw. Have a picnic lunch in the reserve itself. Overnight at the hotel.

Day 08 : Agra
Depart for Agra and en route visit the walled city of Fatehpur Sikri. After lunch, enjoy a guided tour of Taj Mahal. Overnight spend at the hotel.

Day 09 : Agra – Khajuraho
Tourists can opt for a early morning visit to Agra Red Fort or spend the morning at leisure. At noon fly to Khajuraho. Arrival at Khajuraho by 1.00 pm. After lunch, guided city tour of Khajuraho temple complex. Overnight in a hotel.

Day 10 : Bandhavgarh National Park
Leaving for Bandhavgarh National Park (6 hr.). Arrival at Bandhavgarh by noon. Afternoon visit to the park in jeeps for tiger tracking. Overnight at a wildlife resort.

Day 11 : Bandhavgarh National Park
Enjoy jeep safari in the park during morning and evening. Overnight at a wildlife resort.

Day 12 : Kanha National Park
Early morning visit to the park. Later on after lunch, drive to Kanha National Park (7hr.). Arrive at Kanha in the evening. Overnight at a wildlife resort.
Kanha Bird
Day 13 & 14 : Kanha National Park
Morning and evening jeep safari at Kanha for tiger tracking, exploring the park’s natural wilds or bird watching. Overnight at a wildlife resort.

Day 15 : Kanha National Park – Nagpur
Morning jungle visit in the park. After lunch drive to Nagpur (5 hr.). Overnight at the hotel.

Day 16 : Nagpur – Delhi/Onward Destination
Catch the flight from Nagpur to Delhi in the morning. Day room at the hotel. Transfer to the airport for your connecting flight to the onward destination.

Jim Corbett

Safari Timing and Booking in Ranthambore

Guests will visit the park in a 20 seater open canter or a Gypsy, both of which we have re-fitted and furbished for comfort and good viewing. Our trackers are from families who have known the jungle and its animals for generations.

Mode of Transport :
a) Gypsy [Open 4 Wheel Drive Jeep] 6 Seater
b) Diesel Canter [Open Safari Bus] 20 Seater
c) Petrol Canter [Open Safari Bus] 12-15 Seater

Park Timings :
The Park timings depend on the time of the sunrise and sunset. Generally speaking, the Park opens to the tourists half an hour after sunrise and closes half an hour before sunset. For most part of the year it would be safe to say that the timings are as follows:

Summer : Morning April to June 0630 hr to 1030 hr Evening 1530 hr to 1830 hr
Winter : October to March Morning 0700 hr to 1100 hr Evening 1500 hr to 1800 hr

  • Right of Admission is reserved with The Government of Rajasthan.
  • Park may be closed without any prior notice to visitor.
  • No refund / cancellation is permissible after confirmed booking.
  • Bookings are non-transferable.
  • Reserved seats can not be resold / exchanged with any other visitor.
  • Identity proof is must before entry into the park.
  • Cost of Ticket and Accessories may change after booking and visitor will be liable to pay the difference at the time of entry.
  • Into the park in case of any revision in rates.The visitor is required to positively report for boarding Gypsy/Canter 15 minutes prior to the scheduled departure time of any designated boarding point.

Rules for Photo Equipments:
1. There are no charges for Still Camera.
2. Charges for Pcam (Movies 8 mm, 16 mm and video camera used by a mature photographer), DCam (Video camera and movie camera used by professional photographer for films other than feature films – filming by Indian company/agency), VCam (Video camera and movie camera used by professional photographer for other than feature film – filming by foreign company/agency), FCam (Movie and video camera used for featurefilm) as per Tourism/ Forest Department policy.

Jim Corbett

Flora in Ranthambore National Park

Famous for its wildlife population, especially tigers, the Ranthambore National Park is also rich in flora. As the park has six man made lakes and many perennial streams, there is a plenty of water available to support a variety of flora and fauna in the Ranthambore National Park. According to estimates, there are around 300 plant species in the Ranthambore National Park. Due to its proximity to the Thar, the region receives very scanty rainfalls and so the vegetation in the park mainly comprises of the dry deciduous type.

The most noticeable tree in the Ranthambore National Park is the ‘Dhok’ (Anogeissus pendula). The leaves of the Dhok trees form a favorite diet for the Deer, Nilgai and Antelope. Another most prominent trees in the park are the Banyan (Ficus bengalensis) and Pipal. The largest Banyan tree of India stands just behind the Jogi Mahal, the hunting lodge in Ranthambore national Park. The Neem (Azadirachta indiaca) tree, which is universally known for its medicinal properties, grows abundantly in the Ranthambore National Park.

Among the fruit trees found in the Ranthambore National Park, the most prominent include the Mango (Magnifera indica), Jamun (Syzygium cumini) also known as the Indian blackberry, Ber (Zizyphus mauritania), and Tamarind (Tamarindicus indica- popularly called Imli) known for its pulpy fruit used in the preparation of pickles. In addition, there are many trees such as palas (Butea monosperma, the flame of the forest), which sets the forest alight with the bright orange red color, offering a spectacular sight to park’s visitors.

Other important flora in the Ranthambore National Park include the Babul (Accasia nilotica), Gurjan (Lannea coromandelica), Gum (Sterculia urens), Kadam (Authocephalus cadamba), Khajur (Phoenix sylvestris), Khair (Accacia catechu), Kakera (Flacourtia indica), Karel (Capparis decidua), Khimi (Manilkara hexandra), Kikar (Acacia nilotica), Mahua (Madhuca indica), Kulu (Sterculia urens), Ronj (Acacia leucophloea), Salar (Boswellia serrata) and Tendu (Diospyrous melanoxylon). The aquatic flora in the Ranthambore National Park includes a variety of lovely flowers such as lotus and water lilies.

Jim Corbett

Birding in Ranthambore National Park

Famous for its wildlife population, especially tigers, the Ranthambore National Park is also rich in flora. As the park has six man made lakes and many perennial streams, there is a plenty of water available to support a variety of flora and fauna in the Ranthambore National Park. According to estimates, there are around 300 plant species in the Ranthambore National Park. Due to its proximity to the Thar, the region receives very scanty rainfalls and so the vegetation in the park mainly comprises of the dry deciduous type.

The most noticeable tree in the Ranthambore National Park is the ‘Dhok’ (Anogeissus pendula). The leaves of the Dhok trees form a favorite diet for the Deer, Nilgai and Antelope. Another most prominent trees in the park are the Banyan (Ficus bengalensis) and Pipal. The largest Banyan tree of India stands just behind the Jogi Mahal, the hunting lodge in Ranthambore national Park. The Neem (Azadirachta indiaca) tree, which is universally known for its medicinal properties, grows abundantly in the Ranthambore National Park.

Among the fruit trees found in the Ranthambore National Park, the most prominent include the Mango (Magnifera indica), Jamun (Syzygium cumini) also known as the Indian blackberry, Ber (Zizyphus mauritania), and Tamarind (Tamarindicus indica- popularly called Imli) known for its pulpy fruit used in the preparation of pickles. In addition, there are many trees such as palas (Butea monosperma, the flame of the forest), which sets the forest alight with the bright orange red color, offering a spectacular sight to park’s visitors.

Other important flora in the Ranthambore National Park include the Babul (Accasia nilotica), Gurjan (Lannea coromandelica), Gum (Sterculia urens), Kadam (Authocephalus cadamba), Khajur (Phoenix sylvestris), Khair (Accacia catechu), Kakera (Flacourtia indica), Karel (Capparis decidua), Khimi (Manilkara hexandra), Kikar (Acacia nilotica), Mahua (Madhuca indica), Kulu (Sterculia urens), Ronj (Acacia leucophloea), Salar (Boswellia serrata) and Tendu (Diospyrous melanoxylon). The aquatic flora in the Ranthambore National Park includes a variety of lovely flowers such as lotus and water lilies.

Avifauna
Ranthambore has over 300 species of birds. While the park is good for birding, restrictions placed by the authorities to control the crowds may not appeal to serious birders. Some of the best birding areas are on the outskirts, and outside the park. Here one can walk without any restrictions, something you cannot do inside the park.
Some great areas for birding are :

Surwal Lake : It is a shallow seasonal lake, which dries up by April – May. A good time for birding out here is November – March when one can see Painted Storks, Flamingos, Spoonbills, Sarus, Demoiselle Cranes and Greylag Geese. One should reach the lake before sunrise for serious bird watching.

Mansoravar : It is the largest lake in the area. In winter one can see pintail ducks, geese, pelicans and herons in large numbers.

Park Entrance to the Fort : This is the only place in the Park where you are permitted to walk. Because of the pilgrim traffic to the temples in the fort, people are allowed to walk on this stretch from sunrise to sunset. Tigers are seen on this road. The walk, which would last you between 2-3 hours, can net you more than 50 species. The base of the fort is a very good place for Parakeets, Doves, Flycatchers, Painted Spurfowl, Peacocks etc., along with a large horde of monkeys.

Bhoori Pahadi : It is a village on the banks of the Banas River. It is a good spot for bird watching, especially Indian Skimmers and River Lapwings.

Jim Corbett

Wild Animals in Ranthambore National Park

Ranthambore National Park is positioned at the convergence of the Vindhyan plateau and Aravali hill, in the Eastern region of Rajasthan. Two rivers, namely Banas in the North and Chambal in the South, flow through this National Park. You can also find six artificial lakes and quite a few perennial streams passing through the Ranthambore National Park. In the year of 1955, this Park got declared as a game sanctuary. However,Ranthambore Tiger its status of a national park came in the year of 1980. The year 1972 marks the commencement of Project Tiger. It was at this point of time when this park was conferred the status of a tiger reserve in the country. Ranthambore National Park is spread on an area of 1,334 sq kms together with its neighboring sanctuaries – the Mansingh Sanctuary and the Kaila Devi Sanctuary. In this park, there are some areas earmarked for the tourists where they can wander at their heart’s will and explore the fauna and flora housed here. In fact, this distinctive feature of the park is a much loved one, particularly among the tourists. The rugged topography and the intense deciduous forests are key characteristics of this Park, which plays host to one of the most diverse and biggest group of wildlife species in the country. This Park is also declared a heritage site because of the scenic ruins of a fort that dots it. Ranthambore National Park located in Rajasthan is easily accessible via road, rail and air. If you take the road to this place, you may use private taxis, AC luxury coaches or local buses run by the Rajasthan Transport Corporation. For tourists coming by train, the nearest rail head is at Sawai Madhopur, 11 Kms from this Park. For air-travelers, the closest airport is at Jaipur, 140 Kms from Ranthambore National Park. It is best to visit Ranthambore between February and April when the climate is mild. As the weather of this place is pretty extreme at other times of the year, if you visit it during the aforesaid period, you would enjoy seeing the animals sans any discomfort. Ranthambore National Park is renowned for its magnificent Royal Bengal Tigers. In India, this Park is one of your best bets to observe tigers amidst their wild habitat. You can watch these royal beasts on the prowl in the forest, resting lazily on the ruins of the picturesque fort, or moving with grandeur around the lakes as well as the watering holes. So, make a beeline for Ranthambore National Park, Rajasthan without any further delay. You would definitely adore your visit to the place. Take our words when we say that after coming here for once, you would yearn to come back again for more!
Jim Corbett

Clothing For Ranthambore Tour

The clothes you should carry with you to Ranthambore are totally opposite depending on the season in which you are visiting it. The summers are blisteringly hot and don’t expect any let up while you are there. You should expect unrelenting heat day after day if you are there between the months of April and June. With temperatures soaring between 35 and 47 degrees centigrade most of the day, even the lightest of T-shirts feel like warm jackets. Take along your lightest clothes in the summers with the definite inclusion of a cap and dark glasses. In the winter months, specially November to beginning February, the weather is just the opposite.

Morning drives into the park are freezing cold and how many ever layers you wear sometimes feel insufficient. The days however are extremely pleasant and a light sweatshirt can more than suffice. Evenings and night once again get very chilly. Carrying along a pair of gloves and a muffler is advisable. For those who intend to take photographs in the wee hours of the morning without pressing all the wrong buttons on their cameras, take along a pair of gloves that are thin yet warm and provide for sufficient movement of the hands.

Jim Corbett

Best Time To Visit Ranthambore National Park

Cold : October to March (Min less than 10 degrees Celsius) good animal sightings. Best time for bird watching.

Warm : April to June ( Max 40 degrees Celsius ) excellent animal sightings.

Wet : July to September ( National Park is Closed ) Happy hours.

Gear :

Light cotton clothes in warm weather. Raincoat in wet weather. Woolens and jackets in cold weather.
Preferably wear neutral and earthy coloured clothes.

Opening Time :

1st October to 30th June.
Advisable to carry camera and binoculars.

Jim Corbett

How to Reach Ranthambore National Park

Ranthambore National Park in Rajasthan, India, is located 11 Km from the town of Sawai Madhopur. Cars, taxis and buses take tourists to Ranthambore National Park from Sawai Madhopur. You can reach Sawai Madhopur by road or rail.

How to Reach Ranthambore National Park by Air :
Jaipur, the capital of Rajasthan, is the nearest airport to Ranthambore. Ranthambore National Park is about 140 Km from Jaipur. You can fly to Jaipur and proceed to Sawai Madhopur by road or rail.

How to Reach Ranthambore National Park by Rail :
Sawai Madhopur which is just 11 Km from Ranthambore National Park is accessible by rail and is on the main route from Delhi to Mumbai. You can arrive at Sawai Madhopur by rail and take a car or bus to Ranthambore National Park.

How to Reach Ranthambore National Park by Road :
Ranthambore is easily accessible by road from all destinations across Rajasthan. If you’re traveling by road, there are many options from luxury air-conditioned coaches to private taxis and local buses of the Rajasthan Transport Corporation, in which you can reach Ranthambore National Park.

Jim Corbett

Do’s and Don’t in Ranthambore

India can be a wee bit unnerving for the first-time visitor. The lifestyle and culture is totally different from the West. We’ve made a list of some important dos and don’ts for hassle-free and enjoyable travel in India.

  • A proper VISA to enter and stay in India is a must. There are reported cases when travelers are advised non-requirement of Indian VISA by their travel agents. Practically every foreign national requires VISA to enter India.
  • Travelers should get properly inoculated against Yellow Fever if coming through infected regions.
  • It is advisable to cover yourself with travel insurance for thefts, loss and medi-claim.
  • Carry proper maps of the places proposed to visit in India, as signboards are often absent. Try to reach a station during daytime if traveling on your own. In any case avoid persistent touts and taxi-wallahs at airport/stations/bus stand to help you find your hotel. Always use tourist assistance desk for proper advice.
  • Women traveling alone in certain deserted places should avoid walking at odd hours.
  • Don’t ever enter a temple, tomb, dargah or Gurudwara with shoes on and/or scantily dressed. One should cover his/her head with a cloth while in a Gurudwara or Dargah. Parikrama or walking around the sanctum sanctorum should always be in clockwise direction.
  • Do not wear black clothes while visiting a Jain temple. Leather articles are forbidden to be carried in Hindu and Jain temples. Taking photograph of the deity in a temple is normally not permitted.
  • Participating in a social occasion or visiting a home requires conservative dress codes. Do not shake hands with ladies. Always pick up a thing and eat with your right hand. Take only as much as you can eat, do not leave anything uneaten over the dish.
  • Do not point your finger at any person. It is taken as a sign of annoyance.
  • While changing money, insist on getting encashment certificate.
  • Do not encourage beggars.
  • Do not checkout of the hotel in hurry. While checking out it has been noticed in some hotels, the extras are unreasonably charged which the guest hurriedly pays without cross-checking.
  • Do not leave your cash and valuables in your hotel rooms. Keep your cash divided in different pockets.
  • Take care of proper disposal of your rubbish always whether you are exploring desert, or Himalayas or beaches or anywhere else.
  • Be careful of cultural and social sensitivities of the regions. There is no single rule for that, the best way is to observe and follow.
  • Take care of contamination of water and food problem. Always drink safe mineral water and take well-cooked food.
  • Don’t buy antiques more than 100 years old. Selling and buying “shahtoosh” shawls is a crime. The same goes for ivory and wildlife.
  • Buy at genuine shops only. Bargaining is a popular practice in India and necessary too. Don’t ever believe in lucrative offers of antique dealers in which they offer you to carry a parcel of some other buyer back home with your own margin described. Entire transaction should be legal and transparent so that you may claim later if dissatisfied.
  • Don’t eat anything offered by fellow travelers on train or road travels. It might have sleeping pills. Always travel reserved class in trains.
  • Always chain and lock your luggage under your berth in a train. Don’t keep anything valuable near the window. Always carry plenty of water, fluids in trains. A lone woman traveler may request to be accommodated near other women travelers.
  • Do not visit places which encourage orthodoxy, social injustice and inhuman practices (like visiting a sati temple).
  • Don’t photograph women without permission.
  • Don’t accept offers of visiting anyone’s home unless you are confident of the person.
  • Use licensed guides for sightseeing.
  • Always use strong suitcases/baggage, as mishandling is common at airports/stations.
  • Don’t tip unreasonably and unnecessarily in a hotel. The NEWS soon spreads in the hotel and by the time you checkout there will be a group of them saluting you to expect something.
  • While traveling, don’t act confused. Keep a posture of a person known to the region.
  • Avoid eating buffet meals, even in expensive hotels. The food may become contaminated due to over-exposu
Jim Corbett