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Bandipur – Unplanned Getaway


Videos & Picture Slideshows are at the end of the article.

The trip to Bandipur jungle lodges holds a record that would be hard to beat. The record being the fastest planned trip but luck also played its own part. Friday evening close to 3:00 PM just called JLR to ask if there were any rooms available for the weekend, my mind was already playing their reply - Sir, Sorry no vacancies but wasn't I surprised when I heard that one room was available. Five minutes later the room was blocked and the payment was made.  I was thoroughly excited as it was my first time to JLR Bandipur and to add to the excitement it was the first long trip with the Toyota Etios which was a few weeks old. Thanks to Rahul for letting me borrow his 70-300 Tamron lens. The car tank was filled and early morning at about 5:30 we set off. We had about 260 KM's to cover.

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Drive on the NICE road was exciting while the Mysore road was sedate and we were occasionally racing. The car was a pleasure to drive, but when we touched 140 we were sure we were going to take-off. Guess it was two reasons, getting used to the car and the car weighing just 950 kgs. After a big breakfast close to the Mysore Palace we had a rather boring, watchful drive as the Nanjangudu road is two lane and passes through loads of fields and small villages.

The first Tiger Spotting (a superb painting at JLR)

 A Tiger Painting @ JLR

We reached and were awed by the big JLR property, I have seen & been to the Galibore property hence not used to luxury or extravaganza at JLR properties. This one was huge, CLEAN and well maintained. Anu just loved the swings and was lazing away to glory. Occasionally I was given the huge responsibility of giving some impetus to the swing, didn't I love the job :) [can we censor this in the final version]. After a wholesome meal of veggies, yes it was still lent and boy was I feeling down. After a power nap (yes in the Corporate World we call laziness and a plain afternoon siesta - power Nap, blame it on the terminology driven madness) we got ready for the evening safari.





Aged Yet Kicking

Aged & Experienced


Intricate Design




Texture & Patterns


Adrenalin flowing we entered the Bandipur Forest Reserve Area, it was my first in Bandipur, while it was Anu's first in the forests. She was really wary of the open design of the jeep and kept asking the naturalist guide of its worthiness during a Tiger / Leopard attack and when she was reassured she became wary in the case of an elephant attack. We had some regulars in the jeep and an uncle who was cradling his 200-400 VRII lens which would have made any new mom ashamed of her efforts, they were very warm and we got chatty soon.

The Bandipur forest gave us a good welcome with about 50 spotted deers close to the entrance.

Pictures speak a 1000 words, though I could speak more, lets save you the trouble.

Evening safari

Shy & Elusive

Shy & Elusive

Family Bonds


Lets Monkey Around

Snack Time

God Save the humans!

 Looking up to GOD

 My Forest


Forest and its inhabitants

The Forest

 Malabar Giant Squirrel and its environment


Piercing Look

Piercing Look



Red Wattled Lapwing

The Spiderman Look



Streak Throated Woodpecker - For the Future

For the Future

Peacock Series


 Perched High

 Crossing Manners

 Full Flow


We returned with such wonderful experiences and memory and Anu & me were continuously sharing tales of the trip. We had a Power wash [I made this up - you guessed right], where you have to clean yourself in under 120 seconds. We went and watched the movie and were heartbroken seeing the plight of the majestic tigers at the hands of the humans. If we can't save our national animal, what can we save?

The link is here -

Watch the video -

We then had a decent dinner, again the fried chicken was tempting but it was supposed to be a lean period. Nice cozy rooms. Our room was called Gaur.

Our Room



Early morning weary eyed we got ready for the safari and had a nice time except that we decided to get a little adventurous and we were seated / standing in the back of a open jee. By the time we returned we were covered in dry sand and mud. First attempt of tasting mud and storing some in my ears.

Again these are few pictures that I liked.

Back at the lodge, a much needed shower and we were ready to hit the roads back to Bangalore. A very pleasant drive expect for a KL driver who decided tiny two lane bridges are really meant for racing and ticked me off. A wonderful Mangalorean meal at Kamat and five hours in all we were at the other border of Bangalore - East Bangalore. A trip not planned but which ended well. I really missed a 100-400 canon lens hopefully will be renting one from Toehold for the next trip. Till then lets chill.




Video 1 - Streak Throated Woodpecker – Courtship

Music Credit - Blue night By Michael learns to rock | Breakaway By Kelly Clarkson from "Princess Diaries" | Higher by Creed

Video 2 - Peacock Dance

Video 3 - Peacock Dance - Abridged Version




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