Tourist Attractions in and around Jim Corbett National Park
Established in 1936, Jim Corbett National Park is one of the oldest national parks in Asia and also one of the most sought after destinations for exploring the wild.. The first reserve to set off Project Tiger, the star attraction of the park is the endangered, yet fierce and magnetic, the Royal Bengal Tiger.
Where is Jim Corbett National Park
A wide variety of plant and animal life blossoms in the 520 sq km area of the park, which is located at the foothills of the splendid Himalayas, in the Nainital district of Uttarakhand (India). Ramnagar is the nearest town, which is about 12 km from the park.
The park has been divided into 5 zones, namely – Jhirna, Dhikala, Bijrani, Domunda and Sonanadi. One can seek accommodation inside the Jim Corbett National Park, in one of the forest lodges located in these zones. Moreover, there are many resorts on or near the periphery of the park, providing facilities for accommodation ranging from luxury to economy class.
Places of interest near Jim Corbett National Park
Apart from the wild treasures of the park, there are many other attractions near and inside the park which a tourist can add to its itinerary to make his trip more memorable. Following are some of the most remarkable places near Jim Corbett National Park:
Placed in the mid of the river Kosi is one of the most famous temples of Ramnagar, Garjia Temple, located in Garjia village, just 14 km from Ramnagar. A huge rock accommodates the home of Goddess Garjia, which can be reached by devotees after climbing several flights of stairs. Any couple coming to Corbett or Ramnagar can seek the blessings of Garjia Devi. An annual fair, held on the occasion of Karthik Poornima, attracts a large number of followers to the temple.
Sitabani Forest Reserve
Lying near the Jim Corbett Park, Sitabani Forest Reserve is about 10 km from Ramnagar. The reserve provides an abode to a good number of wildlife, including tiger, leopard, barking deer, jackals, wild boars, elephant and king cobra. A heaven for bird lovers, many species of feathered creatures beautify the environs of Sitabani. Associated with the epic Ramayana, it is believed to be the place where Goddess Sita spent her days of exile. An ancient temple devoted to Sage Valmiki is also situated in the reserve.
According to legends, it is the place where Goddess Sita, wife of Lord Ram, entered into mother Earth. Situated 20 km away from Ramnagar, the temple organizes a fair every year, on the holy day of Ramnavami.
Corbett Water Fall
25 km from Ramnagar lies a wonderful surprise of nature, pouring ice-cold and pristine water from a height of 60 feet against the backdrop of calm green surroundings. A refreshing sight for the eyes, one can even jump into it to refresh all the senses of the body. A 1.7 km forest of teak wood around the water fall also offers an opportunity to the nature lovers to camp and bask in the cherished silence bestowed by nature, interrupted only by the chirping of birds.
The highest peak in the park provides a perfect vantage point to have a panoramic view of both Kosi and Ramganga rivers along with the encompassing area of Bhuwankhal village (located nearby). You would also get a feel of British architecture through an old bungalow (residential building) situated near the park.
Dhangari is the main entry gate of the park and is 19 km from Ramnagar. The museum situated near the gate is like an introduction to Jim Corbett National Park. Dhangari museum gives information about the vegetation and the wildlife which inhabit the park. It also gives a peek into a bygone era when the infamous man-eating tigers of Nainital district terrorized inhabitants only to be finally rescued by Jim Corbett. One would also find carcasses of animals that died naturally or in a fight, like tiger, tusker, deer, leopard, crocodiles, etc. There is a souvenir gift shop where you can get literature on wildlife, handicrafts, t-shirts and caps reminding you about your adventurous holiday in Jim Corbett.
Where stands the Corbett museum today was once the home of Mr. Jim Corbett, who was a hunter in his early life, but turned into an animal lover and naturalist later on. The memorial of the man who made immense contribution in the opening of this National Park is located at Kaladhungi (a town in Nainital district). The museum preserves the heritage of Mr. Corbett in the form of personal belongings (like fishing net, cap, gun and photographs), letters and antiques. One can also buy handmade articles with figures of Bengal Tiger and other wild creatures, and add some tangible symbols to one’s memories of Corbett National Park.
Dhikala Forest Lodge
Located at a distance of about 35 km from the Dhangadi Gate, Dhikala forest lodge is located right inside the core area of Jim Corbett National Park, granting a more real experience of the wild. Moreover, being placed at the fringes of the Patli Dun valley (which gets dissected by Ramganga River at various points), Dhikala offers mesmerizing views of nature, making this more than a century old lodge, a very interesting place to find accommodation in.
A 128 m tall dam, built over the Ramganga River in Pauri Garhwal district, is situated in the south-western side of the park. Kalagarh dam facilitates irrigation, generates electric power and also assists in controlling floods. The picturesque and calm surroundings compose a perfect setting for welcoming the migratory birds, making the area one of the most desirable places for bird watching.
Best Time to Visit Corbett
The Jhirna zone of Jim Corbett National Park remains open all through the year, but the other popular zones, Dhikala and Bijrani are closed during the monsoon season. Afterwards the repair works are undertaken to mend the rain-ravaged roads, extending the opening of these zones to the months of October or November. Hence, the best time to tour Jim Corbett National Park is considered to be from Oct/Nov to June.Planning a trip to the wildlife sanctuary, you can avail the opportunity to appreciate other wonders situated around the park. So come and get slices of wilderness, natural beauty, divinity, and history and technical prowess spread around the park.