06.06.2012 - 08.06.2012 38 °C
After Rishikesh, we treated ourselves not only to a private car to our next stop but also a stay in the lovely Tiger Camp near Corbett National Park. We had come to find a tiger but we also enjoyed the very pleasant surroundings of the Tiger Camp. Our fellow guests were wealthy Indian families who seemed to be mostly from Delhi, a very different type of Indian to those we have been seeing on most of the rest of our travels.
Tiger Camp - a pleasant spot
On arrival on Wednesday afternoon, we were told that there were no more spaces for safaris the next day, our only full day in the place. Eventually it transpired that - as is so often the case in India - a bit of extra money and some dodgy connections led to two spaces materialising miraculously for the "canter safari" the next afternoon. We were in the hunt!
Next afternoon, we were picked up in the safari bus, which we shared with about twelve other Indian tourists. We bumped along the gravel roads inside the park for the whole afternoon, getting very numb bums in the name of finding tigers.
The safari bus - not the most comfortable mode of transport we've taken
But it did take us to the most tranquil spot we have been to in India
We passed through arid woodland and dry riverbeds before eventually hitting the wide grass plains in the Dhikala area, near a very beautiful lake, the foothills of Uttarakhand in the background. This was definitely the most peaceful and unspoilt part of India we had been in so far - we saw no more than one piece of stray litter on the ground!
Of course, we didn't see any tigers. They're notoriously elusive and people spend days in these places trying to spot one, while we were merely passing through for an afternoon. But it felt good to give it a shot, and we saw a fair amount of other wildlife along the way - the highlight definitely being the elephants.
Various deer we saw all over the park - even with all this tasty food around, no tigers were eating
A pretty big Indian crocodile
And the best of all - the elephants