13 independent reviews for Wildlife holiday in Central India

Reviews for Wildlife holiday in Central India

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review 9 Jun 2018

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

Each location that we stayed was different and had it's own charm. Plenty of animal sightings along with great food. Our guide Saurabh made sure our trip was wonderful.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Come ready to see plenty of wildlife and bring your appetite as you are being fed great food non stop.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

I enjoyed knowing that local people were employed from surrounding villages. At Bagh Villas it was important to the owners that's their employees went home at a decent hour, and were treated as family. The use of plastic was non existent.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

EXCELLENT because of our guide Saurabh's attention to details. The welcome bag of goodies and welcome card was very special. Thanks to the operator. I will do another trip in the future.

review 22 Apr 2018

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

There were so many memorable aspects of our trip that it is hard to mention just one. We saw beautiful wildlife, our accommodations were top notch, and we did not have to be concerned with any details as Saurabh took care of everything!

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Be very specific about your interests and preferences to Saurabh because he will do his best to make your wishes come true.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes! Local people worked in all the lodges and local guides were always on safari with us. Local drivers took us from one lodge to another. Lodges used specially filtered water to significantly cut back on the use of plastic bottles, some used produce from local villages for our meals, all were conscious about the use of electricity and all used natural means to keep the swimming pools clean.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

Our vacation was great! Saurabh was a wonderful guide who loves his country very much. He took very good care of us. He has great attention to detail and is very knowledgeable about the environments we visited. I would recommend Chinkara Journeys to anyone who wants to visit India.

review 4 Apr 2018

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

The tigers! We had so many great tiger sightings I don't even know where to start & we saw leopards and sloth bears too!

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Take a dust cover! It can be quite dusty on the road. Also, read up on the transfer in New Delhi as you might have to take a shuttle bus from airport to airport there. Everything else was arranged for us by our awesome tour leader Saurabh.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes! You can really see how much work the tiger tourism provides and this ensures the park get a lot more money to manage the parks& the locals learn to love tigers as they provide work.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

10/10, it was truly an amazing experience!

review 21 Mar 2018

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

The whole trip was very well organised. Each place had its own special moments and settings.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Make sure you have good photo equipment and be aware that at some times of the year morning safaris can be very cold.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Trips of this nature obviously provide employment for people within the area which otherwise has not much economic activity.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

Absolutely wonderful. Congratulations to Saurabh and his team for a job well done.. Also full marks for all the travel arrangements made. In actual fact punctuality of drivers was better than we encounter in our home country Portugal.

review 8 Mar 2018

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

The wildlife safaris were excellent with very knowledgeable and enthusiastic guides. The stay at Bhoromadeo Jungle retreat was amazing, with the host Sunny and his wife and team making us feel so welcome. We were taken to local markets to buy vegetables for our dinner and also took part in the colourful Holi celebrations.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Be open minded, happy to visit local villages, and don't put pressure on your wildlife guides to find a tiger. There's so much else to see as well.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

All the places that we stayed in were very aware of the impact on the environment of plastic, waste and pollution. Certainly the nature reserve accommodations used treated water rather than bottled water. We shopped in the village markets for our food. The safari drives were very respectful of the animals in the reserves.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

We had a wonderful trip, staying in fantastic tents in Satpura, Pench and Kanha. We had great food and met such interesting people. Our drivers kept us safe and that's a challenge on the many raods that were under construction. We loved it all!! Thank you!

review 21 Feb 2018

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

Thank you for introducing me to Saurabh Agrawal and the tour operator we used. I had a great time and view the trip as highly successful. I have visited India and Nepal several times. This time I wanted to focus solely on photographing tigers. My expectations were exceeded. There is no doubt that luck plays a part in any wildlife viewing, but equally, if not more important, is designing a trip that will allow good luck to function. Saurabh chose the locations, the accommodations and the people who accompanied us. He acted as my guide. The vehicle used to transport us between locations was roomy, comfortable and spotless. The driver was good, not too fast, not too slow and not reckless. ( Believe me I've had my share of drivers who left me shaken.) I gave Saurabh my accommodation preferences and each of the three I used matched these well. As a guide and traveling companion Saurabh was excellent. He has the experience to select the areas on which to focus, to know signs to be followed, to spot the animals and to position clients well in order to take photographs. Saurabh has a broad knowledge of the world and can participate in any type of discussion. He is kind and considerate and looked after this 73 year old solo traveler well.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

For anyone looking for a similar trip to that which I completed I can highly recommend our tour operator. I met others for whom the company had made arrangements and their views mirrored mine. Allow six months to ensure good zone selection choices in the parks. Each park is split into several zones, overall park entry and individual zones must be pre-booked. The topography and vegetation of each zone differs so the zones selected to see specific bird types and those selected to see tigers may differ. It would be preferable to request of our tour operator either a general interest quest or a list of specifics. I find it is preferable to spend several days in one park to a day or two in several. The distances between parks is not always large but the travel time almost certainly is. A change in parks basically equates to a dead day for me, for others it may be seen as a great way to see village life. Tipping is a way of life on these trips - expect to contribute a low of 500 and up to 1000 rupees a day plus whatever you give your overall guide at the end of your trip. Visitors will need many, many, many 100 rupee bills. Many villages or small towns may have only one ATM or none at all, if there is one and it is not working it can be a problem, it's probably best to stock up in a city. For tipping in accommodations it is best to avoid giving tips for every little service, rather leave 300 to 500 rupees per day to be shared by staff.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

I am sure you know better than I do that tourism, especially in India, is a labour intensive industry. This trip certainly contributed to the employment and therefor well-being of many people. In the Jeep with me as we searched were Saurabh, a driver and a Government Game Ranger. The check- in procedure for the park involved at least two people apparent to me, but probably more. There is no doubt that tourists traveling in the parks have changed the environment. The animals are habituated to vehicles; whether this is good or bad is subjective. The parks I visited appeared to me to be near or at their carrying capacity and animals seeking territories can extend their areas into "buffer" zones and beyond thereby increasing human/animal conflict. Government policy may or may not be adequate to resolve the situation. The parks are also at tourist carrying capacity. The lead time for booking and relatively high costs support this view. It can only get worse.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?


review 13 Feb 2018

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

Seeing our first ever tiger in the wild!

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Be patient, be optimistic and don’t expect instant success

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes. The lodges all employed local staff as did the national parks and they were very conscious of environmental matters. Preservation and protection of all the wildlife within the parks was paramount.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

Fantastic.

review 11 Feb 2018

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

The first sighting of a wild tiger.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

On your arrival at Delhi international Airport, there is an Inter-terminal Transfer Counter outside (near pillar n°10) where you can get a coupon to take a complimentary shuttle to the domestic flights terminal. At the end of your vacation, there is a similar Transfer Counter outside the domestic terminal to reach Terminal 3. Apart from that, the traveler will receive a very complete Information Booklet with all the tips from Chinkara Journeys before departing. All the details are perfectly organised. Thanks to Saurabh! The hôtels are individual bungalows and you will share your dinner with the owners in Bandhavgarh and Kanha.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

According to the parks rules, you are assisted with a local guide and driver. The hôtels are not sophisticated and also employ local people.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

Very satisfied

review 26 Dec 2017

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

The entire vacation was an amazing experience that exceeded our expectations. If I had to pick a single most exciting part of the trip, it would be our first observation of a tiger in the wild in Bandhavgarh. Listening to the alarm calls of Sambar deer and movement in the leaf litter before her appearance just metres in front of our vehicle, something i'll never forget.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Go in with an open mind and embrace the culture, food and experiences!

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Definitely, the majority of places we stayed at were eco-friendly lodges using sustainable often locally grown produce. Staff that we talked to were also often local people from the villages just down the road from the lodges and national parks.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

10/10 could not fault it! Exceeded our expectations!

review 19 Apr 2017

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

Safaris into Kanha, Bandvahgarh, Pench and Satpura National Parks to see the marvelous dry deciduous forests and their wildlife.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Use Responsible Travel and Chinkara

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes, definitely, due to decisions made by Responsible Travel and Chinkara to prefer locally owned enterprises

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

Exceptional, chiefly due to our guide, Saurabh Agrawal

Read the operator's response here:

Dear Michael Thanks for your review. We are glad to hear that you enjoyed the tour. It was great to share some special sightings and secrets of the Central Indian jungle with you. We hope to welcome you once again in India. Best regards,

review 15 Apr 2017

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

Too many to mention but seeing tigers, leopards and so many wild dogs close up in the wild was a wonderful experience.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

1) Take notice of the guide - when he says it will be "dusty", I promise you it will be dusty. When he says "hold on", hold on tight. 2) Don't be afraid to try the local cuisine. The food was fantastic. 3) You won't see a tiger each time you go to a reserve, in fact you may not even see one, but there will always be something to interest you. 4) Always have your camera ready and take binoculars on each trip.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Local guides in the reserves provides employment for the area and the required local knowledge to get the best from the trip. Mostly local villagers were employed at the game lodges. The reserves are well run and I hope that the income from visitors to the area helps to sustain this.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

It is impossible to compare many of the past vacations we have been fortunate to have been on, but this journey to central India rates 5 stars. It was one of the best. I think we were very lucky to have picked our tour operator to provide the vacation and Saurabh was a wonderful guide and naturalist (and new friend) who added a great deal to our enjoyment. I would recommend this company to anyone without a moments hesitation.

Read the operator's response here:

Dear Jim Many thanks for your review. We are so glad that you enjoyed the vacation and were able to see all kinds of wildlife of central India. We hope to welcome you again in future. Many thanks,

review 3 Apr 2017

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

Hard to mention one thing! We were incredibly fortunate to have had some stunning tiger sightings, but that aside the trip that Saurabh and our tour operator put together was out of this world. One thing that was a real highlight was when Saurabh, along with Bagh Villas, planned a surprise private dinner under the stars for us; it really was an unforgettable experience.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Wrap up warm for morning safaris!

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes - the whole trip was done in a way that felt like it did have an effect on reducing environmental impacts and supporting conservation. The water in the tents was filtered and bottled on site, therefore not increasing plastic bottle waste. All the showers etc are solar powered. They grow their own vegetables in the garden. It really felt like a very different trip in that sense to the more "commercial" vacations we have done in the past.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

Absolutely 5 star. 10 out of 10. We were completely blown away by everything that was done for us on this trip. We have been lucky to have stayed in the past in some nice hotels etc, however this trip was 100 times better than anything we had done before. They people, the hospitality, the food, the accommodation, the wildlife, it literally was the trip of a lifetime.

review 30 Dec 2016

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

Watching the tigers in the wild. They are truly majestic creatures.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Take warm clothes in winter. The accommodation and morning Safaris can be really cold.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Definitely.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

The operator and Saurabh made the entire trip perfect. It was very well organized and catered to all our needs. Would recommend the operator to anyone who wants to discover India.

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