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Tourist Places To Visit In Corbett National Park
When Jim Corbett came to the forested lands around Ramnagar, nobody would have guessed it was soon to become the first ever conserved forest in the whole of Asia. He himself turned from hunting down the infamous man-eaters to conservation. So much so that he managed to create what we now call the Corbett National Park. A number of species, besides the man eating tigers are found in the region and chancing on them is one of the best parts of visiting the park. The tranquil atmosphere and the surrounding greenery typical of the Kumaon Region only help accentuate this experience. Though most people visit to explore the numerous zones of the park, people also like travelling to other offbeat places in the region. From the Corbett Museum preserving artefacts of a bygone era to temples and waterfalls sacred to this area, there are a lot many tourist places to visit at Jim Corbett National Park.
This Bungalow once belonged to the legend himself. Now it is a museum dedicated to his life and the wildlife of the national park. The museum displays items like his notes, paintings, sketches and other items from his collection. There is also a souvenir shop near the museum that sells handicrafts. The museum is located at Kaladhungi, which can be reached by either bus or taxi from Ramnagar.
Garjia Devi Temple
This quaint temple lies atop a huge rock on the banks of the Kosi River. The temple itself is quite small, but the serene ambience of the place and the decked up idol of the Devi is enough of a reason to visit the temple. The temple is located in a village close to Ramnagar and can be reached by auto-rickshaws or by cabs. The temple and its surroundings take a different colour during the Hindu Festival of Kartik Poornima with multitudes of devotees gathering to celebrate the festival of lights.
Though the falls are about 25 km away from Ramnagar, many people like spending a day hiking through the teak forests near the falls and enjoying the cries of different birds. The waterfalls is off limit though, and may seem disappointing at first, but the scenic beauty of the place and the fauna and flora of the place more than makes up for it. One can take taxis to the falls.
This area was once a dying piece of land with natural life just barely surviving. Today one would be surprised at the change. Sitabani is now a wooded area with many wild animals and birds residing in it. At one corner of the forest is an ancient temple dedicated to Sita. There is a legend accompanying the temple that says Sita, during the events at the end of Ramayana stayed here while undergoing her agnipariksha, a test by fire. The temple and its surroundings give out a mystic vibe, especially thanks to the silence in which the place dwells.
This 400 ft. dam is also called Kalagarh dam and is built across the Ramganga River. The speciality of the dam is the surrounding wildlife, especially its avifauna. This is one of the most popular spots for bird watching. It is also well known for spotting the waterfowl, a migratory bird. The surrounding area is also great for a casual hike. The dam is about 80 km away from Ramnagar and can be reached by taxis.
The museum is dedicated to the wildlife of the Corbett Region. Many hunted tigers and other animals are kept on display in this somewhat small museum. There is a souvenir shop near the museum that sells books on conservation, the history of Corbett National Park and other similar topics. They also sell handicrafts, wood carvings and other fascinating souvenirs. The museum is about 18 km away from Ramnagar and as with most places, one can avail cab services to get here.
Barati Rau Waterfalls
Somewhat closer than Corbett Falls, is the lesser known Barati Rau Falls. The falls is a few kilometres from the ticket counter, so it includes a casual trek through the forest till one reaches the waterfalls. It is a great picnic site with the view of the waterfalls and the surrounding forests.
This ancient temple dedicated to Durga Devi is situated in the midst of the Corbett Forest. The Temple has a fascinating architecture and its walls heavily decked with intricate engravings depicting Hindu Gods and Goddesses. The temple can get crowded sometimes, but other than that, the surroundings are quite peaceful and contribute to the spiritual aura that one feels here.
Crossing the eastern edge of Jim Corbett National Park, River Kosi makes for a mesmerising setting to relax after a long day. From here you get some picturesque views of the hills, while enjoy the chirping of birds migrated from far off lands. One very unique indigenous species mahseer fish live in this river, giving you a peek into their habitat too. You can also take special permission from the authorities and go rafting in Kosi.
A safari zone of the park, Jhirna is renowned for its almost guaranteed sightings of sloth bears and the elusive tiger. You will enjoy a safari journey through deciduous jungles, and chitals, deer, elephants and nilgai prancing in their natural habitats. Bird watchers also prefer Jhirna for its migratory and exotic avifauna. Of course, due to its sensitivity you will need to procure a special safari permit here, except monsoon when the area closed.
After Dhikala, it is Birjani where you will definitely spot the famous tiger. Hence it is a significant zone in Jim Corbett and a must-visit if you are on a longer trip. In addition to tigers, you will also spot sambar, chitals and hog bears running around Sal trees. There are guest houses in this zone too, so you can book your stay and live in the middle of the forest.
Durga Devi Zone
The Durga Devi Zone runs through hilly dense jungles with a plethora of native flora and fauna on the way. This makes it an exciting safari option to explore when in Jim Corbett. Among the sambars and spotted deer, you will also successfully spot wild elephant herds, black faced monkeys and even jackals in this zone. A unique experience and one that is adventurous in its drive.
Dhikala Forest Lodge
One of the best stays and lodges around the national park, Dhikala is popular for its canteen-style restaurant with freshly made buffets. the Dhikala Zone, where the lodge is located is also quite popular among tourists for the hog deer roaming freely around the lodge. Bengal Tigers are also often seen around the lodge, as are Chaur and spotted deer. The Lodge itself is also open for overnight stay with around 30 well maintained rooms and even hostel-style bunk beds. Non-veg food and alcohol is not allowed inside the lodge.