If you happen to visit the gorgeous hill station of Wayanad during your Kerala trip, do not forget to visit the Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary! A home to a diverse range of wildlife in Kerala, this wildlife abode takes the pride of being the second largest wildlife park in the entire of God’s Own Country.
One of the most important regions of the Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve, Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary is tucked away between the Nagarhhole, Bandipur and Mudumalai reserve forests, and is canopied by deciduous teak forests. Owing to the lush and evergreen settings, the sanctuary offers favourable climatic and habitat conditions to a large number of rare and endangered wildlife species.
On a visit to the Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary, visitors can easily spot Tigers, Elephants, Panthers, Jungle Cats, Bison, Wild Dogs, Deer, and several other species of mammals. The sanctuary also has a significant population of birds, and proves to be a true treasure trove to the nature lovers and shutterbugs.
How to Reach Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary:
The sanctuary is well accessible from many major cities in Kerala and in the neighbouring states of Karanataka and Tamil Nadu. Popular cities like Calicut, Kasargod, Trivandrum and Cochin are around 98km, 216km, 502km, and 286km away from the reserve. Visitors can either avail the regular buses or hire private vehicles to reach Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary.
Kozhikode at a distance of around 100km, serves as the nearest railway station to reach Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary. From Kozhikode, local buses and private vehicles are available at regular intervals.
The Karipur International Airport in Kozhikode is around 125k from the wildlife sanctuary, and is also the nearest airport to reach Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary. From the airport, visitors can take the regular buses operated by Kerala Tourism Department and reach Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary.
Best Time to Visit Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary:
Though this wildlife abode remains open throughout the year, August to February is considered as the ideal time to visit Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary.
Safari Timings in Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary:
Only light vehicles are allowed within the sanctuary premises. Visitors can avail these vehicles strictly for 1.5 hours, and must be accompanied with a forest personnel or forest guide. These safaris cost around INR 300 per person per trip along with a guide fee of INR 100.
Visitors should also pay an entry fee of INR 10 (INR 5 for students and children); entry fee for international tourists in INR 100. If you are carrying a video camera, you need to pay an additional fee of INR 150; for still cameras, there will be a charge of INR 25.