Gir National Park
Gir National Park and Wildlife Sanctuary or Sasan-Gir is located in Junagadh district of Gujarat. The National Park and Sanctuary is spread over an area of 1412 square kilometers. Gir is the only place with wild boars. At present, Gir forests of Gujarat (India) is the only natural place where this race of lions i.e. Asiatic lion is found. The Gir National Park is spread in about 259 sq km and Wildlife Sanctuary in about 1153 sq km. It is located 43 km in the north-east from Somnath and 65 km to the south-east of Junagadh and 60 km to south west of Amreli.
Gir National Park was declared as a National Park in 1965. In 1884, Gir was the only habitat of Asiatic Lions. After then in 1960, the government of India banned the hunting to protect the wildlife as during British period Englishmen in tow with maharajas has hunted down numerous lions and tigers so much so that Lord Curzon issued a diktat to local maharajahs to protect wildlife.
In Sasan-Gir, most of the area is rugged hills, with high ridges and densely forested valleys, wide grassland plateaus, and isolated hilltops. Around half of the forested area of the park is teak forest, with other trees such as khair, dhavdo, timru, amla, and many others. The other half is non-teak forest, with samai, simal, khakhro and asundro jambu, umro, amli, vad and kalam.
According to the 2010 census, there are 411 Asiatic lions inhabiting the Gir National Park and Wildlife Sanctuary. Of these 411; 97 are lions, while 162 are lionesses and 152 are cubs. Besides Asiatic lions, there are various wildlife animals such as Leopard, Wild boar, Bear, Panther, Jackal, Sambar, Spotted deer, Striped Hyena, Leopard, Nilgai, Chinkara gazelle, Jungle Cat etc.
Best time to visit:
The Gir National Park is open from the mid of October to mid of June. The best months to visit the sanctuary are November, January and February.
Visitors are advised to get in touch with officials of the sanctuary for complete information entry timings and fee. Usually the Park remains open from 06:00 AM to 06:00 PM.
There are several accommodation options around Gir National Park and Wildlife Sanctuary to accommodate outsiders or tourists. Visitors are advised to get in touch with us to get know about accommodation and other facilities along with charges.
By road: Gir National Park is connected to various cities in Gujarat. Junagadh is about 50 kms from the Gir National Park. Veraval is 40 km away from Sasan Gir. State transport buses make the two hour trip between Junagadh & Veraval via Sasan Gir at least four times a day. Also a number of state highways connect to Gir:
By rail: One can travel by rail to Junagadh from Ahmedabad or Rajkot and then take a 65 km road trip.
By Air: The nearest airport is located at Keshod which is just 38 km away from Gir National Park.