Located in Rajasthan’s Rajsamand district, the Kumbhalgarh Wildlife
Sanctuary covers a total area of 578 square kilometres across the Aravalli
Hills, incorporating parts of Udaipur as well as Rajsamand and Pali. Within the
wildlife sanctuary is also situated the famous Kumbhalgarh fort, after which
the wildlife sanctuary is named. For those who believe Rajasthan to be a desert
region, the dense greenery and forests of Kumbhalgarh might come to a surprise.
The exquisite flora of the Kumbhalgarh Wildlife Sanctuary acts as a divider
between the Mewar and Marwar regions of Rajasthan.
The land that forms the Kumbhalgarh Wildlife Sanctuary was once a lush
hunting ground for royals but was converted into the wildlife sanctuary in its
current form in 1971. The wildlife sanctuary boasts of a diverse landscape with
the eastern area bordered by the towering Aravalli Hills with a height of over
3,748 ft and the River Banas also passing through the sanctuary, serving as the
main water source.
The Kumbhalgarh Wildlife Sanctuary is home to numerous animal species,
including a variety of endangered and rare animals, and nearly 200 different
types of birds. There is also a 40-strong pack of wolves in the sanctuary, a
size of which is rarely found elsewhere. While the monsoon season at the
Kumbhalgarh Wildlife Sanctuary brings fresh life to the greenery, the autumn
season is painted in russet tones. Tribals from the Garasia and Bhils groups
also live in the sanctuary. The natural beauty of the Kumbhalgarh Wildlife
Sanctuary is a major attraction for tourists, and provisions are also available
for horseback safaris, jeep safaris, and trekking expeditions.
More on Kumbhalgarh Wildlife
Fauna at Kumbhalgarh Wildlife
The Kumbhalgarh Wildlife Sanctuary provides natural
habitats for a wide variety of animal species, ranging from animals such as
wolves, jackals, 4-horned antelope, leopards, sloth bears, Sambhal nilgai,
hares, jungle cats, and chinkaras. Not only does the sanctuary house wolves,
but it is also the only such place in the state where wolves can be spotted in
their natural habitat. Since there are around 40 wolves in the sanctuary, in
the summer season, packs of wolves can easily be spotted in the parks. Meanwhile,
at the Thandi Beri Lake, crocodiles and types of waterfowl can be seen.
There is also a diverse variety of birds at the
Kumbhalgarh Wildlife Sanctuary, where there are over 200 individual species of
birds. You can spot plenty of doves, bulbuls, peacocks, white-breasted
kingfishers, red spur owls, golden oriole, parakeets, and grey jungle fowl. The
herbal plants growing in the Kumbhalgarh Wildlife Sanctuary include Khair,
Salar, Churel, and Dhok.
Jeep Safari at Kumbhalgarh
The Jeep Safari provides you with a way to easily
explore the Kumbhalgarh Wildlife Sanctuary. The most popular jeep safari at the
sanctuary starts from Kumbhalgarh and travels to Thandi Beri Lake and back, for
a total of 3.5 hours, covering a distance of 15km. Inside the sanctuary there
is a track for 4-wheel drive.
The horse safari is a more natural way to explore the
sanctuary without disturbing the animals. Several horse track routes are
available, connecting the locations of Kumbhalgarh, Ghanerao, Thandi Beri,
Sumer, Ranakpur, Roopanmata and Ranakpur. If you are lucky you can spot bears,
leopards and sambar in their natural surroundings, roaming around. At the end
of the sanctuary at Ranakpur, there is a Jain Temple which you can also visit.
Many hotels in the Kumbhalgarh region and in Ranakpur,
Ghanerao, Narlai and Kotri organize horse/jeep safaris.
Safari Cost: INR 2,500 per Jeep for 6 People
Trekking at Kumbhalgarh Wildlife Sanctuary
The Kumbhalgarh Wildlife Sanctuary has hilly and rugged
terrain that is excellent for trekking enthusiasts. One of the most popular
trekking trails in the sanctuary is the 3.7km Tirthankar Natural Trail, which
is dedicated to the Jain Tirthankaras as a representative of an ideal ecosystem
of the Aravalli Hills. The path is bordered by various plants that are believed
to have been around the Jain Tirthankaras when they achieved enlightenment.
Other popular trekking tracks include the 98 km
Roopnagar-Sumer, 30 km Roopanmata-Ranakpur, 25 km Ranakpur-Kumbhalgarh, 15 km
Ranakpur-Thandi Beri, 14 km Kumbhalgarh-Thandi Beri and 8 km Malgarh-Magga.
Apart from comfortable shoes, all you require for trekking is the entry permit
for the Kumbhalgarh Wildlife Sanctuary that is received upon submitting entry
Places To Visit Near Kumbhalgarh
Kumbhalgarh Fort: Located at a distance of only
approximately 2km, the Kumbhalgarh Fort is a must-visit. Following the
Chittorgarh Fort, the Kumbhalgarh Fort is recognized as the second-most
extraordinary fort in Mewar. Within the fort, there are many exquisite palaces,
temples and other structures that can be traced back centuries. The Badal Mahal
at the pinnacle of the Kumbhalgarh Fort offers gorgeous panoramic views.
Joba Wolf Point: In the Kumbhalgarh Wildlife
Sanctuary, at a distance of 7 km from Sadri is the Joba wolf point, a natural
habitat for wolves. The around 500 hectares of the forest close to the Muchala
Mahaveer Temple is home for the Indian wolf.
Ranakpur Jain Temple: The Kumbhalgarh Wildlife
Sanctuary is close to the famed temple complex of Ranakpur Jain Temple. Devoted
to the Jain guru Adinath, the temple is considered to be among the largest and
most important Jain temples in the country. Nearby, there are two more Jain
temples as well as a Sun temple.
Best Time To Visit Kumbhalgarh
Although the Kumbhalgarh Wildlife Sanctuary is open all
year, the period from March to December is the ideal time to spot the local
Stay Near Kumbhalgarh Wildlife
Visitors can stay within the Kumbhalgarh Wildlife
Sanctuary or outside, with Forest Rest Houses available at locations of Thandi
Beri, Sadri, Ranakpur, Roopanmata and Sumer. The Forest Rest Houses have 2-3
rooms each available at INR 200-400 per night. To book accommodation at the
Forest Rest Houses, contact the DFO Wildlife office in Rajsamand or the
Assistant Conservator of Forests, Kumbhalgarh WLS, Sadri.
Restaurants Near Kumbhalgarh
Kumbhalgarh hotels also have restaurants that serve
tasty local Rajasthani food and other cuisines as well. At the sanctuary
itself, there are facilities to buy food as per need.
Tips For Visiting Kumbhalgarh
1. The entry permit for the Kumbhalgarh Wildlife
Sanctuary is required for trekking.
2. Forest guards can be hired to accompany you on treks
at rates of INR 200-500, or your travel agents can also arrange trekking
3. Carry food, water, sunglasses and a hat for the
4. Safari jeeps and horses and can be arranged by
5. Tourists visit Kumbhalgarh for both the sanctuary as
well as the fort, and it’s best to place advanced bookings, especially during
the peak season.
6. The Forest Guest Houses do not provide food, however,
based on request the caretaker can arrange food. It is recommended that you
carry packed or stove meals.
7. The local Rajasthani Thali is a must-try food item at