Bharatpur Travel Guide
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- BharatpurMember ofFamily Travelers
I'd been yearning to go to the bird sanctuary at Bharatpur (now called Keoladeo National Park )for at least a decade, so when we decided last Christmas to visit Rajasthan I jumped at the chance to visit this legendary park.
We stayed in The Bagh, a hotel that had been built to resemble a Maharaja retreat, set amongst splendid ornamental gardens and fruiting trees. Maybe going in January wasn’t the best idea as it was: 1/ so foggy you couldn’t see your hand; 2/ the atmospheric hotel villas lacked any substantial heating (night-time was 2 degrees). So it made for a couple of less than comfortable nights.
The park itself is an old hunting area, set-up by a local Maharaja to entertain the British Raj and its officers…think Duck Shooting for the privileged. The park is a wetland paradise and famous for its cranes and storks. The weekend we visited was also an Indian public holiday so unfortunately having thousands of visitors around, albeit well-behaved, is not conducive to good solitary bird watching. But never-mind I saw several species that were firsts for me including black bittern, painted stork, sarus crane, crested serpent eagle and my guide was very good.
Being a World Heritage Site means the park has some hope of sustaining its unique ecosystem even though it is bounded by 15 villages and has over 100,000 visitors a year. Its main challenge is to secure reliable water from the dams that provide water for those villagers and also irrigate their crops…water that is not always seen as a necessity for topping up the lakes in the sanctuary so that foreigners can look at birds. But conservation can prove beneficial for all parties.
- BharatpurFirst to Review
It's a great little place. The renowned bird sanctuary, home to thousands of migratory, is just fantastic. It's a good place to stay compared to Agra as the Taj Mahal is only about 40 mins away and Agra is just too hectic/unorganized.
Stayed in Swaraj Resorts (the opposite the bird sanctuary) and the place is just AWESOME. beautiful gardens, excellent food, and very reasonably priced.
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