Mornings and evenings are the best time to observe animals and birds - which is why we planned out an overnight trip both here and to Bharatpur.
The Ranthambhor National Park certainly is one of the most picturesque game reserves in the world - the entire forest being dominated by the silent, ruined battlements of the Ranthambhor Fort, which is inside the sanctuary.
Another interesting feature of the park is a huge banyan tree - supposedly one of the world's largest - near the graceful Jogi Mahal water palace. Incidentally, Jogi Mahal still does not have electricity.
Covered under Project Tiger (one of Asia's most important conservation efforts), Ranthambhor is the favourite haunt of wildlife buffs and professional wildlife photographers from around the world. Apart from tigers, other animals include panthers, caracal, hyena, jackal, jungle cat, marsh crocodiles, wild boar, bears and various species of deer. The Park has a rich birdlife as well including The Great Indian horned owl, which has an uncanny resemblance to my boss back home.
Ranthambhor is known for its "friendly" tigers, who are not merely nocturnal, but frequently seen during the day, often stalking their prey in full view of visitors.
Ah yes, a very interesting thing about the Ranthambhor Fort. Atop the rocky cliff, there is a post office and a temple of the Hindu god, Ganesha.
Big Deal, you would say! But hear this... the invitation card of every Hindu wedding is first sent to this temple and the post office is there because of the overload. I pity the poor postal department chappie who has to climb the fort's steep serpentine ramp with overflowing mailbags.