A one-of-a-kind educational adventure to support tiger conservation efforts
Travel to the land of the enchanting, elusive, and sadly endangered Bengal tiger. While there are many threats to its survival—economic development, habitat loss, and lack of prey—the most immediate threat facing the tiger is poaching to satisfy the market for traditional Chinese medicinal products. To create awareness and to raise funds, please join us on this special mission to see for yourself what is at stake. Traveling into the heart of tiger habitat by elephant, open 4x4 vehicles, and on foot on this entirely unique adventure, you’ll search for tigers in India’s Bandhavgarh National Park and in Nepal’s Bardia National Park, learn from on-site experts about current threats to their survival, and explore what steps can be taken to save them. Make your contribution just by participating—and MTS will match your donation with $300 for every participant on the trip to The Fund for the Tiger, a non-profit public charity.
This trip is not eligible for our VIP program.
Moderate road travel, game viewing by elephant & vehicle
- Travel to India and Nepal to see the magnificent and endangered Bengal tiger
- Learn from the real experts about the life, habitat, threats, and conservation efforts being made to protect the tiger
- Enjoy tigers and other exotic animals in their natural environment in India’s Bandhavgarh National Park and Nepal’s Bardia National Park
- Experience safaris by open 4x4 vehicle, on an elephant, or on foot!
- Make your contribution just by participating—MTS contributes $300 for every participant on the trip to The Fund for the Tiger, a non-profit public charity
Duration: 15 days Start Location: Delhi End Location: KathmanduDownload Detailed Itinerary
Day 1 : Arrive in Delhi (This entire trip is below 6,000' elevation)
After arrival in Delhi, you will be met and transferred to the hotel.There will be a trip orientation meeting at 6:00 pm with Brian Weirum.
NOTE—It takes two to three days (depending on your airline schedule) to travel to Delhi. The date and time of arrival in Delhi varies greatly from carrier to carrier. Most flights arrive in Delhi either very late in the evening (between 10:00 p.m. and 1:00 a.m.) or early in the morning (between 2:00 and 3:00 a.m.). We are holding reservations at the hotel in Delhi for the group starting the afternoon of Day 1 (March 13). If you arrive early in the morning of Day 1, you will need hotel accommodation from previous night in order to check in immediately. This night is at your own expense, but we can make reservations for you at the same hotel. We will make arrangements to meet your flights at the airport and transfer you to the hotel.
Day 2 : To Bandhavgarh National Park
We catch a morning flight to Khajurajo and then drive to Bandhavgarh in Madhya Pradesh, Central India. We will pass villages and can watch villagers going about their daily tasks. We will also drive through field after field of fascinating farmland. About 6 hours driving.
Days 3 - 5 : Bandhavgarh National Park
We'll spend the next three days looking for the tiger, learning about its life, habitat, and the threat to its survival. Time will be spent in open jeeps and on elephant. Park regulations regarding access to elephants and the Fort change yearly, but be assured we will maximize our time in this beautiful place.
Created in 1968, Bandhavgarh is a 160-square-mile park in the vast central Indian state of Madhya Pradesh. This beautiful preserve is dominated by Bandhavgarh Fort, a massive plateau rising 1,000 feet from the Indian plains and former home of the Maharajah of Rewa. Hindu legend tells of Lord Rama who, upon his return from the wars in Ceylon, stamped out a flat place for his brother to settle (Bandhavgarh means “brother’s footstep”). The progentior of all white tigers, Mohan, came from the forests of Rewa, a short distance from Bandhavgarh National Park.
The park's terrain is dominated by a dry, deciduous forest of sal and bamboo, with steep, rocky hillsides and vast open meadows. Game viewing is done primarily in jeeps or on elephants; the park staff will have patrolled the terrain beforehand and if a tiger has been sighted, we’ll drive immediately to that area and search for it on elephants. It’s also possible to come across a tiger while driving around. Walking is not allowed at Bandhavgarh. In 2001, the group enjoyed a 45-minute encounter between a large male tiger and two Indian gray wolves—a very rare sighting! In 2008, 12 different tigers were sighted, including one mating scenario. In 2012 we watched a tigress explode out of a densely forested waterhole and kill a langur on a rock outcropping.
Day 6 : Khajuraho
We’ll spend the morning on a game drive. We will look for, and hopefully see, grey langurs, sambars, muntjac and wild boar, rhesus macaques, nilgai, chinkara, jackal, jungle cat, mongoose. There is also a possibility of leopard, gaur, sloth bear, hare and Indian fox. The terrain is rocky and dry forest. We will drive to Khajuraho after breakfast.
Day 7 : Delhi
In the morning we’ll tour the famous temples of the Chandela Dynasty at Khajuraho.These temples are known for their erotic sculptures and there is also an active Jain temple.
In the afternoon we'll fly back to Delhi. At dinner tonight we'll meet Belinda Wright of the Wildlife Protection Society of India.
Day 8 : Kathmandu
Mid-day flight to Kathmandu. Transfer to the Yak & Yeti Hotel. Our hotel is one of the best-known in Kathmandu, situated centrally and boasting beautiful gardens. The rooms have carved wood and local textiles. Brian will host a cocktail party and tiger talk this evening.
Day 9 : Bardia National Park
From Kathmandu, it’s a short 45-minute flight to Nepalgunj. We'll then travel two hours by Land Rover to Karnali Lodge on the edge of Bardia National Park, our home for the next four nights.
Days 10 - 12 : Bardia National Park
Bardia National Park is Nepal's largest and best-preserved wilderness area. It is home to a healthy and stable tiger population as well as a large population of Nepal’s one-horned rhinoceros.
Bardia and its surrounding forests and jungle are at the very heart of tiger habitat in Nepal and of critical focus for the funds raised by this trip.
While at Bardia, we will take early morning and late afternoon game drives in jeeps or nature walks to places where we can sit quietly and hope rhinos or tigers will appear. We can also take elephant safaris into tiger habitat. Elephants are the prime game viewing mode of transport at the lodge, and we’ll search for the tigers, sometimes thrashing through deep jungle growth or following pug marks over difficult terrain. Viewing tigers can be unpredictable: a blur of black and gold bolting through the forest or coming across one staring out at you from the tall grass. (When a tiger is near, you can feel the excitement in the elephant.)
Day 13 : Kathmandu
This morning, we transfer to the airport in Nepalgunj for our flight to Kathmandu. Upon arrival, we transfer to the hotel. Brian will lead a late afternoon stroll through the vibrant, ancient streets of old Kathmandu.
Day 14 : Kathmandu
Morning sightseeing trip to one of Kathmandu's most famous landmarks: the large Buddhist stupa at Bodhnath, center of Tibetan Buddhist culture in Kathmandu. In the afternoon, Kathmandu is yours to explore. By western standards, the city is intimate. You can visit the many interesting sights, shrines, and markets, or stroll in Kathmandu's fascinating Asan Tole bazaar. Don't miss Durbar Square, Thamel, Swayambhunath (the “Monkey Temple,” overlooking the entire Valley; go at sunrise or sunset!) and the King's Palace. You could also hire a driver to take you to the nearby ancient city of Patan. Farewell dinner this evening at Krishnarpan Restaurant in the beautiful Dwarika Hotel.
Day 15 : Fly home
We transfer to the airport and depart Kathmandu on homeward-bound flights.
NOTE—Most homeward-bound flights will require an overnight en route. (The trip officially ends in Kathmandu. Some passengers return home via gateway cities other than Delhi and/or extend their Asian adventure with quick trips to Tibet, India, Bhutan, or Indochina. Mountain Travel Sobek offers several interesting extensions—call us for details.)
DATES: Best time to go: March Departures: Mar 17 - 31, 2015
Tiger Den Resort
Situated on the fringes of a local village “Tala” the Tiger Den Resort offers you a location advantage, which no other resort does - You can walk some distance to view a day in the life of an Indian village, where the pace of life is still measured by the rhythm of the seasons. The humble dwellings, the mud clustered houses, the elders smoking hookahs sitting on a cot, are some of the common scenes which signify that the time stands still in certain areas of the world even today.
Yak & Yeti HotelKathmandu, Nepal
A 5-star deluxe oasis in the heart of Kathmandu, the Yak & Yeti is the perfect blend of contemporary international standards and time-honored Nepali tradition. Guests will find refuge among antique fountains, gilded temples and emerald gardens, while enjoying a state-of-the-art gymnasium, spa, shopping arcade, atrium, tennis courts and swimming pools.
A haven of peace and tranquility, Hotel Chandela offers easy access to the world famous Khajuraho temples, Panna National Park Tiger Reserve, and more. Tucked snugly amidst 11 acres of beautifully landscaped gardens, this hotel offers an array of modern comforts.
Radisson HotelNew Delhi
The closest hotel to the Delhi Airport (3 miles), the five star Radisson Hotel Delhi is located near the business hub of Gurgaon in the New Delhi National Capital Region (NCR). This business hotel in New Delhi has a large inventory of rooms, exceptional services for the corporate traveler and on-site dining at The Great Kabab Factory,
Properties shown are representative of the accommodations we use on this trip, may not be inclusive of all accommodations we use, and are subject to change.
Expert leadership is the key to an exciting, unforgettable experience. Our trips feature gifted leaders for whom leading trips is a true vocation. Besides showing you wonders you’d never find on your own, they make sure everything runs smoothly and safely without a hitch. They are knowledgeable about all aspects of your trip, and take great pleasure in sharing their insights with you. More than just guides, they positively elevate your experience by being teachers, companions, and the best of friends. You’ll be in good hands with them every step of the way.
Brian K. Weirum
Brian K. Weirum has been traveling to Asia since 1970 and leading treks in the Himalayas for Mountain Travel Sobek since 1983. In the early 1980’s he developed the highly successful Ultimate Everest Trek for MTS. Since 1993 he has been leading a series of Special Departures to other exotic Himalayan destinations, including Mustang, Dolpo, Mount Mera, and Makalu in Nepal, Mount Kailas and Oracle Lake in Tibet, Kangchenjunga in Sikkim, and Bhutan. And to Mongolia, Peru, Patagonia, Spain, Italy and Alaska.. Brian created the very successful Save the Tiger trip in 1994 for Mountain Travel Sobek, with departures available each March that travel through both India and Nepal, and also founded The Fund For The Tiger, a non-profit tax-exempt public charity dedicated to supporting tiger conservation efforts in India and Nepal.