About Ranthambore National Park
Ranthambhore National Park is a dry deciduous forest in Rajasthan, India. It is abode to over 40 species of mammals, 320 species of birds, over 40 species of reptiles, and approximately 300 species of plants.
The forest of Ranthambore gets its name from the fort of Ranthambore. The Fort is located in the middle of the jungle and witnesses the vibrant long history of this imperial era.
Ranthambore National Park is situated in the desert state of Rajasthan. The forest remains dry for more than eight months in a year; therefore, the chances of spotting this elusive big cat are much higher as compared to other tiger reserves in India.
Quick Journey of Ranthambore National Park
- 1955 - The reserve was earlier confirmed as the Sawai Madhopur Sanctuary by the Government of India.
- 1973 - It was announced as a part of Project Tiger in India.
- 1980 - Ranthambore was declared a National Park.
- 1984 - The adjacent forests were proclaimed as Sawai Mansingh Sanctuary and Keladevi Sanctuary.
- 1991 - The tiger reserve was broadened to include Sawai Mansingh and Keladevi Sanctuaries.
Due to the extreme exploitation of forest areas in India, forest conservation policies were severely required in the country. By the mid-twentieth century, in 1953, the Rajasthan Forest Act came into force to provide some legal protection to the forests and wildlife in Rajasthan. Though it was not sufficient to completely protect the forest cover, it has slowed down the exploitation rate.
Ranthambore National Park was established initially as Sawai Madhopur Sanctuary in 1955 by the Government of India. Thus, any commercial activity in the forest was totally prohibited. However, the total of tigers in the forests was declining, and this wild predator came on the verge of extinction in the country. So, a tiger conservation program, "Project Tiger", was started in 1973 by the Government of India. The government took an area of 60 sq miles of Sawai Madhopur Sanctuary under the Project Tiger Scheme, which was declared the Tiger reserve area.
By 1980, more than 12 villages were relocated out of the sanctuary, and a region of around 282.03 sq km was declared a part of the national park. Since then, the area of the tiger reserve has kept on increasing over time by including the adjoining forest areas in the protected zone. In 1983, 647 sq km of forest lying adjacent to the north side of the Ranthambore National Park was named the Kela Devi Sanctuary and included in the tiger reserve zone.
Similarly, 130 sq km of forest beside the park's southern periphery was declared the Sawai Mansingh Sanctuary in 1984 and incorporated into the Ranthambore Tiger Reserve. Due to these tiger conservation efforts, the tiger count has improved tremendously since Project Tiger was prompted. According to the 2019 census, the count of tigers was 74 in the Ranthambore. Ranthambore National Park wildlife safari is regarded as the best in the world to see tigers in their natural habitat.
Geography of the Park
Ranthambore is located in Sawai Madhopur district of Rajasthan and spread over an area of 1700 sq km. During the rainy season, the National Park is very green; otherwise, this National Park is known as a Dry Forest Park. Many water bodies are loacted all over the park, offering a cool and breezy climate throughout the sizzling summer months. There is a massive fort, atop a hillock after which the park is named. Many ruins and excavations of former eras is spread all over the dry deciduous forest, giving it a characteristic, breathtaking, and mixed flavour of environment, history, and the natural world.
Quick Fact & Figure of Ranthambore National Park
- Area: 1700 sq. km.
- Latitudes: 25 460°N to 21 12°N
- Longitudes: 76 17°E to 77 13°E
- Nearest Railway Station: Sawai Madhopur (10 km)
- Nearest Airport: Jaipur (approx 200 km)
- Average elevation: 350 meters M.S.L.
- Temperature: Summer highest of 48°C, Winter lowest of 02°C
- Climate November to March: Cold
- Climate October to April: Moderate
- Annual Rain Fall: 800 mm
- Rainy Season: July to September, and a section of the park remains closed during that period.
- Type of Forest: Dry deciduous forest
- Geography: There are two hill ranges that meet in the forest, Aravali and Vindhya ranges.
- Roads: 300km of the road network
The landscape of the Ranthambore forest is mostly rough and rugged, with low hills and steep outcrops. The hilly area of the Aravali range normally has cliffs on one side and a moderate slope on the other. This Aravali stretch is mostly undulating terrain except for a few small flat areas and a few small valleys.
Ranthambore National Park
Located in the southeastern region of Rajasthan, the terrain around Ranthambore starts to switch from the arid and dry Thar Desert to dense forests. Ranthambore's environment is quite distinct as it is situated in the heart of the Aravali and the Vindhya ranges. The climatic conditions, though, are very identical to those elsewhere in Rajasthan.
The summers are scorching, while the winters are relatively cold. Unlike other places in Rajasthan, Ranthambore weather is exceptional in monsoon, as it obtains a good amount of rainfall. In the monsoon season between July and September, zones 1 to 5 of Ranthambore National Park remain closed for tiger safari while zones 6 to 10 stay open during monsoons.
Summer: April to June
Between April and June (summer season), Ranthambore experiences hot and humid weather, with temperatures rising to 40℃. The month of April is still comfortable, with mercury not surpassing more than 30 – 35℃. However, May and June are particularly hot months. During the summers, one has more possibilities of sighting tigers and other animals who visit the water bodies to keep themselves hydrated.
Monsoon: July to September
Ranthambore receives a decent amount of rainfall during monsoons. The monsoon rains get enough water to rejuvenate the forest of Ranthambore. While the monsoon revives the forests and vegetation to full bloom, the number of animals that come out to graze and feed on the newly blooming grass also rises. However, Ranthambore National Park remains partially closed throughout the monsoon.
Winter: October to March
The daytime weather is enjoyable and hovers around 19°C. The nights and early mornings are cold. The closed park now reopens for safari and tourism steadily rises. The safari occurs in two slots each day, morning and evening. The gypsy and canter safari is the key attraction here.