- Talk to the expert 0844 879 3960
- Request a Brochure
South Asia’s extraordinarily diverse landscapes support a correspondingly impressive array of wildlife. One of the most fertile parts of planet earth, the region teems with creatures, both large and small, and even an evening on the veranda in the city will yield entertaining encounters with tree squirrels, geckos, mongoose, kites and inquisitive house crows. However, for a glimpse of the subcontinent’s benchmark species in the wild, you’ll have to travel to its wilder fringes, where hundreds of national parks and sanctuaries offer world-class viewing experiences.
The animal every wildlife enthusiasts hopes to see once in their lifetime, of course, is the Bengal tiger. Under constant pressure from poachers, tiger numbers have plummeted to the brink of extinction in recent decades, though stable populations survive in parks such as Chitwan in Nepal, and Ranthambore, Bandhavgarh, Kanha and Kaziranga in India. The latter, ranged over a fecund flood plane along the Brahmaputra River in Assam, is also the place to see the heavily armoured, notoriously grumpy one-horned rhino.
Further south, the undisputed stars of the southern jungles, draped over the Western Ghats range in India and rainforests of Sri Lanka, are its elephants, lion-tailed macaques and primeval gaur bison. Sri Lanka is also home to its own endemic species of rosette-spotted leopard.
Few areas of the world enjoy such a varied and abundant birdlife as South Asia, and your TransIndus holiday will yield many opportunities for memorable sightings, whether you’re a confirmed enthusiast or just someone with a passing interest in the natural world. Indeed, many TransIndus guests cite spotting colourful, exotic birds as among the unexpected highlights of their trips.
Birds pop up wherever you go. Even seated on your hotel veranda you’re certain to see a little flock of mynah birds hopping around in search of tit bits, a Brahmin kite or two wheeling overhead, fork-tailed bulbuls flitting over the lawns, bright green parakeets screeching past, and a couple of audacious house crows sneaking up for a bite of your sandwich when your back is turned.
Down south, kingfishers and bee-eaters provide astonishing splashes of colours among the paddy fields, along with turquoise rollers and gleaming white cattle egrets. Rarer standout species you might encounter in dedicated reserves include the gigantic Saras crane, which grows as tall as an average man, white-bellied fish eagles swopping into the shallows and, amid the sun-baked salt flats of western Gujarat, flocks of pink flamingos.
Vultures, another quintessentially Indian species, are sadly much rarer these days, but are making a slow come back.
Nor indeed need wildlife holidays in India, Bhutan, Nepal or Sri Lanka mean roughing it these days. On the contrary: the parks featured on TransIndus tours are all served by superbly well set up, stylish, eco-friendly lodges offering comfort in some of the wildest terrain on earth.