Pench is a yet another well known Tiger reserve, located in state border of Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra. The area of park lies in Madhya Pradesh, Central India, comes under Seoni & Chhindwara district. The total area of the Reserve is 757.89 km² of which, the Indira Priyadarshini Pench National Park, forming the core zone of the Reserve, covers 292.85 km², and the Mowgli Pench Wildlife Sanctuary is 118.30 km² in area. A Buffer Zone constituted by Reserved Forests, Protected Forests and Revenue land, occupies 346.73 km². The habitat is contiguous on the south with the 257.26 km² of the Pench Tiger Reserve,. Named after the river that flows nearby, Pench was declared a Wildlife Sanctuary in 1977, National Park in 1983 and Tiger Reserve 1992, Pench was included under the umbrella of "Project Tiger" as the 19th Project Tiger Reserve. Famous writer Rudyard Kipling got inspiration from same national park to write “The Jungle Book”.
How to reach Panna National Park -
Pench national park has 3 enterance gates but the most popular one is Turia gate which is 13km. away from Khawasa state border(NH-7) of Madhya Pradesh and Maharashra.
Nearest airport and railway station is in Nagpur city(100 km.).
Jabalpur is about 200 km. away from Pench (Turai gate) and Kanha national park (Kisli gate) is about 250 km. Chindwara is about 65 km. but via Seoni is 120 km.
Pench National Park Flora & Fauna -
The forest cover in the park area includes grand Teak (Tectona grandis) mixed with other magnificent species like saja (Terminalia tomentosa), bija (Pterocarpus marsupium), lendia (Lagerstroemia parviflora), haldu (Adina cardifolia), dhaora (Anogeissus latifolia), salai (Boswellia serrata), aonla (Emblica officinalis), amaltas (Cassia fistula), etc. The ground is covered with maze of grasses, plants, bushes and saplings. Bamboo is also found at places. Dazzling white kulu (Sterculia urens) trees scattered around stand out conspicuously among the various hues of green.
Tiger is the main cat species of the park present in good numbers but sighted infrequently. Commonly seen wildlife is chital, sambhar, nilgai, wild boar, and jackal. Other wild animals found are leopard, sloth bear, wild dog, porcupine, jungle cat, fox, striped hyena, gaur, chowsingha and barking deer.
There are more than 170 species of birds including several migratory ones. Some of them are peafowl, junglefowl, crow pheasant, crimson-breasted barbet, red-vented bulbul, racket-tailed drongo, magpie robin, lesser whistling teal, pintail, shoveler, egret and herons. The large Pench reservoir within the park with its numerous islands provides a magical setting for boating. Motorboats, Paddleboats and rowboats are available for the tourists at Chhindimatta.
Rafting can also be done in the Pench river outside the park between 1st September and 15th October. The forested banks of the river along with rocky stretches of the river locally called kassa make for an adventurous, memorable experience. For rafting, contact park staff at Karmajhiri.
Resorts & Lodges in Pench National Park -
Prominent hotels available here are Taj’s “Baghvan”, Pench Jungle Camp, Mogwli’s Den, Mahua Van Resort, Kipling court etc. Indus Excursion offers best wildlife safari tours and Tour Packages for Pench National Park.