“Betla National Wildlife Sanctuary”
It is situated in the Dist of Palamu in Jharkhand state. Deers are quite plentifully available here in the open as one enters in to the park . Instead of living in deep forests where they have a constant fear of attacks by Predators,they rather prefer to live and graze in open areas in and around the Forest Guest House and Restaurant.mostly by the evening these deers reach quite clost to the Forest suits and watching these Deers grazing fearlessly gives a beautiful experience.
Apart from Deers,Elephants,Bisons,Monkeys,Paecocks and many more species of animals & birds are natural inhabitants of this forest.During my visits to this forest by virtue of my posting at Daltonganj (which is around 27 km away from this National forest),I have encountered many Giant Bisons and Wild elephants during Jungle Safaris that I made during one year of my stay there.I used to visit this place almost every sunday afternoon with my wife on a Bullet ride and the journey was full of pleasant experience because of the topography of the landscape .
There is facility of Jungle safari on Jeep, and many jeeps are always available for a ride at a nominal cost of around Rs500.00. One has to take permission for this Jungle safari which is for 2 hours either at early morning or during evening hours because most animals and birds are available at those hours mostly .The best thing is,there is a very beautiful Restaurant just near the main entrance of Betla ,where refreshment facility is available at normal charges and it is run by Jharkhand Forest department.The tourists those who stay in the Guest house and Tree house enjoy a lot as Deers in big numbers roam around fearlessly.
Betla is about 170 km from Ranchi,the state capital of Jharkhand .One can easily reach Ranchi by Rail or Air from any part of India.
In the”Forest department Guest house” at the entrance of Betla National Forest there are 4 suits and apart from it there are 2 Tree houses too.In my opinion the accommodation in suits & tree houses with a very nice Restaurant which is surrounded by deep Forest and long fields is a unique experience for stay.Mostly at night time due to scarcity of electricity it is almost pitch dark though there is facility of Gen set for emergencies. The foods they provide to the tourists in the Restaurant is quite homely and are at normal costs.Apart from it,there are a good number of private hotels just in front of Betla National Park with all modern amenities . Bengalis and wildlife lovers from across India come and stay there mostly during winter days from November till end of March,beyond which Tourists don’t dare to come here because of very high temperatures in Summer days.From July till end of September Jungle Safaries are not allowed due to the breeding season of animals and the forests departments do census work.
There is a very old and famous “Palamu Fort” of ancient times at around 4 to 5 km from here and most tourists visit the same ,which is mostly inhabited by Maoists.But there is facility of Police protection at Palamu fort where every year during Chhat Puja a Tribal Mela is organised and people from nearby villages mostly tribal come to this mela which is quite enjoyable.
Just at a distance of 40 km from Betla there is another nice forest guest house at Maromar with best accommodation along with two tree house cottages and nice lawns where almost every night Wild elephants are sighted.The surrounding beauty along with mountain nearby adds to the beauty of stay. Fooding facility is there and quite good with a well designed Kitchen and Dining hall.
Altogether,Betla National Park is a nice Forest destination for the Nature Lovers as well as photographers too.
The Royal Stag….a click from Betla
I am sure if you visit this beautiful Forest range during winter days you will enjoy nature as well as the flora and the fauna.