Kaziranga is a world famous national park for great one-horned rhinoceros. This forest is spread over Golaghat, Karbi Anglong and Nagaon districts of Assam state in north-east India. Its importance can be understood from the fact that approximately two-third of the one-horned rhino population lives in this forest. It has been declared as a World Heritage site (Natural), recognized as an Important Bird Area (IBA). All this emphasized the importance of this natural habitat for overall wildlife of this region. This forest is mainly spread over the flood-plains of Brahmaputra river which brings fertile soil, every year, during monsoon flood and get it spread over this region and thus here we will find tropical moist broadleaf forest, tall grasslands, wetlands. This forest is spread on the edge of Eastern Himalayan biodiversity site. Although we know Kaziranga as home of 2450 one-horned rhino but it is just one reason to admire this forest. It is natural habitat of famous "big-five" i.e. One-horned Rhino, Wild Buffalo, Swamp Deer, Tiger, Asian Elephants. Wild Buffalo is another major attraction of Kaziranga whose healthy population can be seen here only. It is open for visitors from 01st November to 30th April. This period of 06 months is comparatively less because of the the annual flood and heavy rainfall in this region.
Kaziranga forest lies in north-east of India. From 4th to 12th century, this region was under Kamrupa kingdom. With the beginning of 13th century, Ahom kingdom established their rule over Brahmaputra valley and keep on consolidating their position. They protected this region from invasion of Mughals due to which we can still find the ancient marks of Ahom rule and culture. After them, British forces took control of this region after first Anglo-Burmese War and this region was put under Bengal Presidency. Britishers took initiative of startng tea plantation and manufacturing in this region. Later in 1874 Assam province came into existence. During British rule, Mary Curzon visited Kaziranga forest in 1904, to explore the forest and see the one-horned rhino. She was wife of Viceroy of India and during her visit, she failed to enjoy good sighting of one-horned rhino, in this forest, due to their dwindling population. She was with expert Assamese animal tracker Balaram Hazarika, who explained the ground realities to Lady Curzon and convinced her for Rhino conservation on urgent basis. She discussed the issue with his husband (Viceroy of India) to initiate some plan for their protection and rehabilitation. On 01-June-1905, Kaziranga Proposed Reserve Forest was created wtih 232 sq.km area. Its area was increased and in 1908, it became proper Reserve Forest. In 1916, it became "Kaziranga Game Sanctuary" and thus hunting was openly done by British officers till 1938 when government banned hunting and only visiting was allowed. With this change, its name was changed to "Kaziranga Wildlife Sanctuary". In year 1968, Assam national park act 1968 was passed and thus Kaziranga became national park. In 1985, Kaziranga was declared as World Heritage Site (Natural). Regarding its name "Kaziranga", so many dieties are prevailing but the most close diety seem to be as "Land of Red Goat". As we know that Kaziranga have healthy population of Eastern Swamp Deer whose color is golden yellow to orange thus here Red Goat is reference for Eastern Swamp Deer thus it simply means forest of swamp deers.
Kaziranga national park is special in many ways. First of all it has a proud history of successful conservation of Asiatic one-horned rhinos. Second best time about Kaziranga forest is that it is home of "big five" at one place. These big five are rhino, tiger, elephants, wild-buffalo and eastern swamp deer. Presence of such a rare wild life species with long list of bird species makes Kaziranga safari as grand show of the tour. At present, their is no other national park in India where we can find such a collection of rare species. Elephant safari and elephant bath show is also very popular among tourists. Presence of more than 478 bird species in forest makes it a popular birding destination.
Kaziranga jungle safaris can be enjoyed from 01st November to 30th April. Kaziranga jungle safaris are mostly done by two ways i.e. Elepaht safari and Jeep safaris. Considering the geographical and climatic conditions of this forest on Brahmaputra flood plains, both the safari modes are juntified for exploration of forest. Kaziranga have grasslands on marshylands with tall elephant grasses. Rhinos and Swamp Deers love to spend time on such grasslands. Thus it is important to use elephant ride to penetrate into such grasslands and have sighting of Rhinos and Swamp Deers. Elephant ride is a slow process for jungle exploration thus jeep safaris have their own importance. They allow tourists to explore large area of forest in speedy way. Here first elephant ride is offered and then, with short gap, same tourists can go for jeep safari ride.
Kaziranga national park is approx. 230 kms from Guwahati city, in Assam state. It is well connected by train and flight option. As this region lies on north-east of India thus tourists from rest of the world prefers flight option, over train and bus options. Still here we have discussed about the travel possibilities by train, cab and flight options.
|Destinations||Central Range (Kohara)
|Western Range (Bagori)
|Eastern Range (Agaratoli)
|Burapahar Range (Ghorakhati)
|Manas Natonal Park||300||340||365||310|
|Orang National Park||140||130||160||110|
Kaziranga national park lies in north-east India which received heavy rainfall and thus forest is also tropical moist decideous type. Here duration of monsoon season is comparatively long from May to mid of October thus safari are not operated in this duration. Almost 06 months, park remains close and safaris are operated on remaining 06 months.Thus period from November to April is the good time to visit Kaziranga. If you are visiting India for Rhino-Tiger tour then best time to visit is from February to April month. Indian summer season is good for tiger safaris. If you are on birding trip of India then best time to visit will be from November to February as large number of winter visitors birds, reaches North and North-East India for breeding and other survival activities.
If you are planning to visit Kaziranga national park then first of all ascertain your tour type. If you will be visiting India for wildlife photography with tiger & rhinos in priority then must finalize your plan in 3-5 months as tiger reserve permits get sold out in advance. If your plan is for rhino & birding tour then you may plan in 1-3 months in advance. For Kaziranga visit, 2/3/4/6 is the ideal combination of tourists due to the fact that Elephant safari is recommended for Kaziranga tall grasslands and 2-4 pax are allowed on one elephant. As majority of tourists are visiting by flight option so do your flight tickets booking in advance. For this, avoid period of 20th Dec to 15th Jan as it is winter period and fog may disrupt flight services. As if now, online advance safari booking service is not available for Kaziranga thus permits are confirmed only in last 24hrs. Just like other tiger reserves, here also safaris are done on different safari whose entry gates are far from each other thus hotels should must be booked as per your desired safari zone. Here climate change in short notice thus carrying one pair of rain-coat is recommended.
Accommodation facilities in Kaziranga are with limited options. In all major stay categories like budget, standard, deluxe etc. we will get 2-3 options thus if plan gets finalized, then just do the accommodation booking on desired hotel or resort. Eastern Himalayan slopes and its adjoinint regions are very popular for birding destinations. After Kaziranga, we have option to visit Manas national park, Dibru Saikho
North East India is blessed with many nature tourism destinations. Along with Kaziranga, we can visit to Manas national park, Dibru Saikhowa national park, Orang national park etc.