I decided to take the kids for a holiday to Ranthambore, one of India’s oldest and most magnificent tiger sanctuaries. It’s an advisory for any parent considering traveling with young toddlers to any safari that this is no easy task. But despite all warnings all in all it was a fairly smooth trip with these two munchkins.
Tiger safaris are hard work. You have to wait patiently, zoom through the woods, sit quietly for long periods and endure the dusty and bumpy terrain of the forest so decide if this is destination is for you, especially if you are travelling with small children.
We finally saw the Tiger on our 3rd and final safari, but it’s good to warn you that many people don’t see the beast even if they go for 5 safaries. While the guides and naturalists do everything in their power to track the tiger, it’s a waiting game and any sightings depend on the tigers mood and your luck.
We were 20 feet away from 2 tigers mating, we had tracked their pug marks to the tall tiger grass where they go to hide out, we could hear them growling but they refused to come out of the grass. So tiger spotting, like everything in life needs a little bit of LUCK.
The mornings were cold, and being from Bombay these kids are really not used to such weather, but not wanting to miss out on anything made them not complain and they sat quietly and sometimes giggled, sometimes cribbed through the bumpy and jumpy terrain while we went looking for this magnificent beast.
The entrance to Ranthambore is majestic to say the least. Build around 1100 AD, it’s huge walls canvas the forest. The fort was built mainly to stop any foreign invasion and protect the garh from intruders. To see the real beauty of the fort requires an entire evening and it is a good idea to add it to your itinerary.
The morning safari was a miss for Tigers but we saw so many birds, deers, crocodiles and while the mighty beast eluded us, it really didn’t seem to matter to us.
Once we went back to the hotel, we ate lunch, lazed around a bit and then we were ready and excited for our evening safari. While it can be seriously tough juggling 2 toddlers on a safari it CAN be done. Just be prepared for some tantrums, tummy aches, slight fever and a lot of excitement.
So pack those binoculars, bring out the warm clothes and head out a for a safari with the family. It’s a great destination for bonding and if you have some affection for all things outdoorsy, you love nature, and you want to indroduce your children to this magical place called the “Jungle”, then this destination IS definitely for you and your family.