Top 10 Eco-Tours in India

Corbett National Park India

A eco-safari at beautiful Corbett National Park in India.

Globally, we are all concerned over man’s greed and arrogance encroaching upon some of the earth’s greatest marvels. Both the natural and manmade marvels are in danger, including wildlife reserves, iconic monuments, great bio-reserves and more. However, that by no means implies that we should stop traveling or stop exploring new destinations.

There is actually a simple and creative solution to the problem– ecotourism. Ecotourism means exploring all that you want while respecting the prevailing ecosystem of the destination. For example, if you are traveling in a wildlife reserve, you can explore exciting tiger tracing trails, but you need to respect the laws of the jungle and make sure you are not destroying the natural ecosystem of the reserve.

For those of you who find the concept of ecotourism exciting, here are some of the best eco-tours you can take in India:

1. Sunderban bio-reserve

The Sunderban delta is literally a treasure trove of flora and fauna. The network of marshes and backwaters in the region make it ideal as a habitat of wildlife. The Bengal tiger is probably the most popular resident of the Sunderban delta, but there is more to it than that. Take a tour of the Sunderban delta and explore the rich wildlife of the region. You are bound to have an adventurous time during the safari.

2. Valley of Flowers

Valley of Flowers India

The gorgeous Valley of Flowers.

From the wild, it is time to move to something exotic and more tranquil. The Valley of Flowers is probably the place where man came up with the idea of heaven. The Valley of Flowers is exactly what the name suggests– it is simply a valley of flowers. But is much more than your typical botanical garden. Located in the higher reaches of the Himalayan region, it is home to a wide variety of alpine flowers. It is also home to some exotic species of wildlife including snow leopard and blue sheep. Take a trip to this valley, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a national park too.

3. Gir National Park

One of the most exotic of all wildlife reserves in the country is the Gir National Park. It probably wouldn’t have been so exotic had man taken enough care to protect the lion population. However, as things stand, very few of them remain in the world, and in most parts of the globe you can see a lion only in zoos. Gir National Park is one of the regions of the world where they can be seen in the wild. That is surely reason enough to take this wild and adventurous eco-tour in India.

4. Ajanta and Ellora Caves

If you thought eco-tours in India are all about wildlife, think again. India is also home to plenty of cultural and spiritual experiences. One of them is the Ajanta and Ellora Caves. These caves were carved out by Buddhist monks when the religion was popular in India. We are talking about more than 20 centuries ago! The walls of these caves are adorned with beautiful sculptures that date back to that time. The caves, which are situated some distance away from Aurangabad, have many visitors every year marveling at this man-made marvel.

5. Elephanta Caves

Talking about ancient caves in India, Elephanta Caves are another one that should be in your must-visit list if you are looking for great eco-tours in the country. The caves are located on an island a little off the shore of Mumbai. You need to do some hard work in order to get to the entrance of the caves, as there are a series of steps you need to climb. Some parts of the caves have faced the wrath of nature. However, in recent years, efforts have been made to preserve the caves. Just like Ajanta and Ellora Caves, the walls of Elephants Caves also have some intricate sculptures to admire. As for the name, you guessed it– if you look from far away, the caves resemble the shape of an elephant.

6. Kerala

Munnar Kerala

Amazing Munnar, Kerala.

When planning an eco-tour in the country, you cannot miss out on Kerala. While most popular tourist destinations in India have succumbed to the pressures of commercialization, Kerala is one destination that has managed to become more beautiful by the day. The biggest reason for that is the peaceful co-existence of man and nature in this part of the world. Kerala has also preserved its rich culture and tradition. Take a trip to Kerala and enjoy the beautiful dances of the region, the Onam festival, the snake boat races and a whole lot more. If you are looking for a more adventurous tour, try backwater cruising or taking a trek in the hills of Munnar.

7. Keoladeo National Park

For all the bird lovers out there, this is the place to head to if you want to enjoy rich bird life. Keoladeo National Park, earlier known as Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary, is home to a wide variety of bird species. During the migratory season, the park is flooded with birds of almost all kinds. The flora in the region takes on vivid colors during the migratory period, with wings of all colors adorning the branches of trees and plants. With efforts on to conserve the species of birds, this eco-tour is a must if you love bird watching.

8. Andaman and Nicobar Islands

It is said that life probably originated under water, much before it did on land. That makes marine life much older than life on land, and, therefore, much more exciting! You get to explore strange kinds of creatures with eclectic features, vivid colors and more. One of the best places in India to do a bit of marine life exploration on your own is Andaman and Nicobar Islands. The warm waters of the islands are home to exotic marine life, including beautiful sea turtles, rare species of fish, and coral reefs. Take a dive and you will love the experience.

9. Corbett National Park

One of the first wildlife reserves to gain popularity in India was Corbett National Park. Ever since its inception, the national park has endeavored to conserve various species of wildlife in India, including tigers, Asiatic elephants and more. The efforts have paid off too, with thousands of tourists flocking to the national park for an adventurous safari. You can take a safari in this national park and get a chance to spot tiger in the wild. The core areas of the park have been protected from incessant tourist activity, which makes it a great eco-tour to take.

10. Dandeli

Of all the ecotourism destinations listed above, Dandeli is perhaps the least known of all. But that takes nothing away from the beauty of the land. Dandeli could easily be called the Sunderban of the South, such is the bio-diversity in the region. Coupled with a wildlife reserve, there are immense opportunities for adventure here, including rappelling, rock climbing, rafting, kayaking and more.

If you are looking for eco-tours, India is the perfect destination!

About Divij: Divij is an adventurer, a budding photographer and a writer. By now he has been to various trekking trails and to many offbeat destinations in India. He has been writing since he was 12. Currently, he writes articles on travel for Thrillophilia.com. 

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