Mukurthi National Park, Niligiris, Tamil Nadu

Mukurthi National Park is located in the Nilgiri district of Tamil Nadu. It is nestled at an altitude of about 2400 m above sea level on the south-eastern part of the Nilgiri Plateau. The total coverage area of the region is approximately 80 sq km.

About the park
The park was conferred a wildlife sanctuary in 1982. It was deemed a national park in October 1990 to protect the endangered Nilgiri Tahr. The national park forms a part of Nilgiri Biosphere.

Most part of the sanctuary is covered with grasslands. Wet temperate mixed forests are found in patches in certain areas of the region. Evergreen trees and savannah woodlands are quite prominent in these forest areas.

The park is quite famous among the tourists for the Nilgiri Tahr. As such, it is also popularly referred to as Nilgiri Tahr National Park. The other animals that can be seen here are Asian Elephants, Royal Bengal Tiger, Barking Deer, Nilgiri Marten, Otter, Sambar, Leopard, Black-naped Hare, Malabar Spiny Dormouse, colourful butterflies and so on. Nilgiri Salea, Bronze-headed Vine Snake, Horseshoe Pit Viper, Common Indian Toad, etc. are some of the endemic reptiles of Mukurthi National Park.

The important avian fauna species of the sanctuary include Wild Pigeon, Woodcock, Black Eagle, Whistling Thrushes, Laughing Black-winged Kite, Black-and-orange Flycatcher, Black Eagle, etc.

Getting there
The nearest airport is the Coimbatore airport about 140 km away. From Coimbatore there are regular bus services to Nilgiri Tahr National Park. The nearby railhead is at Udhagamandalam.

General information
The visitors can find accommodation in the Forest rest houses. Many other lodging options are also available around the park area. The visitors can indulge themselves in several activities such as safari rides, nature walk, and trekking. Some of the important routes are Bangitapal -Sispara-Poochiparai- Silent Valley -52 km; Bangitapal - Sispara -16 km; and Western Catchment - Bangitapal - 14 km.

Tourist information
Mukurthi National Park, Pykara, O' Valley, Tamil Nadu - 643237, India
Ideal time to visit: February to May and September to November.
Timings: 9:00 am to 5:30 pm. Closed on Tuesday
Entry Fee applicable.

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