Gugamal National Park in Amravati
The Gugamal National Park which was established in 1974, is one of the main tourist attractions of Amravati district. This national park is popular for its huge number tiger population. It is considered to be the Indian national park with highest number of tigers present. This park is a part of the Melghat Reserve Forest and is stretched over an enclosed area of 1673.93 square kms. The park is in the hilly forest track of the Satpura range which is popularly known as the Gavilgarh hills and is spread across two tehsils of the Amravati district, which are Chikaldhara and Dharni. The whole forest area is hilly with steep ups and downs, which makes it suitable for tiger habitation.
This park, along with few others were made by the Indian government to stop tiger poaching for its valuable skin and help them in breeding, thus maintaining the ecological balance.
The forest area inside the park is mainly filled with dry deciduous trees, with ample presence of Bamboo plantation. Ain, Tiwas, Aola, Lendia, Dhawada, Kusum and Teak are some of the main trees population of the national park. This park is rich in variety of medicinal plants. A visit to Gugamal National Park will present a wide array of plants, which counts to almost 750 different species. There are 90 species of trees, 316 species of herbs, 56 species of climbers, 66 species of shrubs, 23 sedge species and 99 grass species present inside the park area. The place is an absolute delight for the nature lovers and Botanists.
Apart from plant variety Gugamal National Park is a depot of many wild animals. Tourists can enjoy sightings of Tigers, Leopards, Sloth Bears, Wild Dog, Jackal, Hyena, Chausingha, Sambar, Gaur, Barking Deer, Panthers, Wild Boar, Rhesus Monkeys, Langur, Macaque, Pangolin, and some rarely seen animals such as Cheetal and Mouse Deer. The Safari is extremely enjoyed by tourists due to such a wide variety of animal presence. For bird watchers this national park is like heaven with 260 species of birds. Serpent eagles and Paradise Flycatcher are the main attraction of the place.
People can enjoy a Jungle Safari on various forest transport or they can take their own vehicles. One can go on a trek through the forest area and enjoy the nature to the fullest. Gadga River and Dolar River flow through the park area where people can watch crocodiles sunbathing on the river banks. Children can enjoy sights of various colourful fishes and butterfly during a trip to the park. Best time to visit the park is between October and June, especially during early morning hours. Winter season is ideal for bird watching.
Tourists can enjoy a stay in the Gugamal National Park and do night safari. Kolka Rest House is the forest guest house of the area, where standard accommodations are available based on permission taken from the Amravati Forest Office.