Melghat Tiger Reserve
Melghat is among the first tiger reserves setup in India to save the big cat. Cuddled in Satpura Range and spread over 3600 square kilometers, Melghat lies about 100 kilometers away from Akola. Habited by Royal Bengal Tiger, deers, leopards, jackals, fox, wolves, bears, flying squirrel and numerous other animals; Melghat is also home to 16 species of snakes. Tapti River, in the vicinity has over 24 species of fish. More than 250 species of birds and more than 200 species of spiders have also been recorded in Melghat. Melghat is bird watchers’ paradise as it is still home to the Forest Owlet; a species that was considered extinct until recently. The forests also boast of having the Indian pitta, racket tailed drongo crested serpent and crested hawk eagles. December to May is the best season to visit Melghat. Trekking permits can be obtained from Conservator of Forests and Field Director, Project Tiger, Melghat. Enchanting hill station of Chikaldhara and a trek to Gavilgad fort to enjoy some spectacular waterfalls can be coupled with the visit to Melghat Tiger Reserve for a perfect family outing. The Sankhala point, near Makhala; Kolkaz and its surrounding forest, Narnala fort, Wan Sanctuary, Ambabarwa and Mahadeo temple near Dhargad Sanctuary are some other nearby spots popular among tourists.
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