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Monday, 10 April 2017

Rajaji Tiger Reserve, Chilla, Uttarakhand

Chilla Sanctuary has a new name now - Rajaji Tiger Reserve. In fact three sanctuaries Chilla, Motichur and Rajaji were merged together in April 2015 to form Rajaji Tiger Reserve.

This Reserve is spread over an area of 820 sq km in Haridwar, Dehradun & Pauri Garhwal districts of Uttarakhand. Chilla is in Pauri district though it is nearer to Rishikesh / Haridwar. This is second tiger reserve in Uttarakhand first being Jim Corbett National Park.

As the Ganga flows, Rishikesh town is on right bank & forests are on left bank. For crossing over on foot or on a two wheeler there is Laxman Jhoola or Ram Jhoola. There is no bridge in Rishikesh town for cars. For cars there is a barrage for going to the left bank or a bridge on Haridwar-Kotdwar road can be used. Nearest railway station is Haridwar & airport Dehrdun.

As for stay, there are forest rest houses and a small hotel run by Garhwal Mandal Vikas Nigam. Tariff for GMVN are 2.5k to 6k. Location & service of this hotel is good. Please book online as nearest alternate is either in Haridwar or Rishikesh.

Forest has deer, sambhar, wild boars, elephants, tiger & leopards. But in 3 hr safari we could not spot any tiger or leopard. Lots of colourful birds are there. Better have a binocular handy.

Gypsies are available @ 1500 per trip, guide costs 300 & entry ticket 150 ( seniors 50% ), foreigners 600 per person. Timings are 6 to 9 in the morning and 3 to 6 in the evening. Full day safari is also available. Reserve remains closed in July & August due to rains. Some photos:

Welcome to Rajaji Tiger Reserve Chilla, Pauri Garhwal

Meet Juhi two month old baby elephant. She was found by a forest guard crying in a ditch with her mother nowhere in sight. At that time she was one month old. Forest guard has named the baby elephant 'Juhi' 

Juhi lives in this room & wants to get in. She is being fed with liquid diet made of baby food, milk & water. She consumes 26 litres of it per day

Deer, spotted deer, wild boar, elephants & Sambhar can be seen. There are 14 tigers & many leopards also but they did not oblige us 

jumbo safari is also available 

Group of elephants. Binoculars are useful item in jungle  

We decided to take on 36 km long jungle road on our EcoSport. It took almost three hours of tough gruelling ride. Sighting of tiger or leopard would have given some satisfaction! 

View from the Machan in Hotel - in the background is a small hydro-elec plant and Shivalik Hills
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