The forests of Masinagudi teem with life and offer a primeval experience to those wander deep into them. They take you back into an age when humans were the hunted and predators prowled in the darkness of the canopies, while the only sounds of warnings came from alarmed primates and rushing deer. This pristine chunk of thick forest in one of South India’s wilderness areas is a great place to experience India’s wildlife from up close.
When to Visit
The reserve is a 5-hour trip south from Bangalore. The best times to visit Masinagudi are the winter months to mid-summer (October to May). Monsoon is also a good time to visit as there is moderate rainfall and the forests are at their verdant best.
Wildlife of Masinagudi
Image Source: safarilandresorts
Masinagudi is home to many of India’s flagship species. The region is abundant with many types of deer, including the spotted deer, a staple of South India’s forests. The reserve is part of a much larger tiger habitat, the Mudumalai National Park. Other predators include the elusive leopard and smaller cat species like the jungle cat and leopard cat, the striped hyena and the Indian wild dog or dhole. Common large mammals include the gaur, wild boar and sambar deer.
Masinagudi is a fascinating place for bird watching too, and some of the avifauna here includes the Malabar trogon and different hornbill species. Safaris on elephant back allow you to get closer to the wildlife, and you can go for treks or jeep rides with local guides who will show you the hotspots of the reserve.
Where to Stay
There are a host of Masinagudi resorts which provide a perfect base for your explorations. You can look for a homestay in Masinagudi or around the area for a charming cultural experience. Masinagudi is the heart of the Nilgiri Forest Reserve, and you can further explore the region around this forest. Nearby places include Bandipur National Park, just an hour away. Ooty is only 30 kilometres away.
Things to Pack
Image source: glamazondiaries
Pack the right items for the jungle trip to avoid inconveniences. Stick to light clothing which blends with the surroundings. Carry insect repellant and have an extra pair of shoes. Look for sturdy shoes with grip, especially useful in wet conditions. Carry a poncho in case it rains. The sun will be beating down in most months, so hats, sunscreen and shades are a good recommendation. Masinagudi provides a great stage for photography, so you will want to carry your camera. Ensure that you also have a weather-proof backpack to keep your possessions safe.
There are many other wild getaways around Bangalore. Browse through some popular Bandipur resorts, another popular choice for wildlife enthusiasts. If time is a constraint, there are many resorts in Kanakapura Road where you can enjoy an outing with friends and loved ones and take a break from the daily grind. Nandi Hills, Bangalore is also an ideal destination if you want to step away from the city for a while.