Set up in a vast, expansive space of nearly 1412 square km, the Gir National Park in Gujarat is one of India’s best-known and prestigious national parks. Inaugurated on 18th September 1965, the park was made the principal home to Asiatic lions, one of the rare species of lions that are found in India and parts of the Middle East. The national park also houses around 38 species of mammals, 300 avifauna species, 37 species of reptiles, and over 2000 insect species.
Located about 65 kilometers southeast of the Junagadh district of Gujarat, Gir National Park features lush deciduous forests, acacia shrubs, wetlands, and grasslands which form part of the diverse topography of the sanctuary. The best time to visit Gir National Park is from October to June. It is easily accessible from all over the country by different modes of transport. Take a look at the detailed Gir National Park travel guide, which provides information about the wildlife sanctuary to plan a tour.
What is Gir Forest National Park and Wildlife Sanctuary famous for?
Gir Forest National Park and Wildlife Sanctuary is famous for being a protected habitat of the endangered species of Asiatic Lions.
When were the Protected Forests established?
Gir National Park was once a hunting ground for Indian royalty, and consequently, the population of the Asiatic Lions dwindled at a fast rate. It was the Nawab of Junagadh who brought hunting to an end here. After Independence, the area was declared a wildlife sanctuary on 18th September 1965. It was in 1975 that this sanctuary was demarcated as a national park.
What is the location of Gir National Park?
Gir Forest National Park is situated in the South-West of the Saurashtra peninsular region in the Indian state of Gujarat.
Gir National Park Opening & Closing Dates
The opening date of Gir National Park is 15th October and the closing date is 16th June.
Gir National Park Safari & Timings
Jungle Safari is one of the best and most exciting ways to explore Gir National Park and spot Asiatic Lions. Jeeps with guides are arranged by the Gir Forest Department which let you have an informed and exploratory tour within the park. Moreover, the department also arranges for “Lion Shows” in which the organizers send advanced trackers to ensure the location of the lions and then lure them with live baits so as to keep them visible to the tourists.
|Monday To Sunday
|6 AM to 9 AM
|3 PM to 6 PM
|9 AM to 12 PM
Interpretation Zone/ Devalia Safari Park
|Monday To Sunday
|8 AM To 11 AM
|3 PM To 5 PM
Gir National Park Safari Zones
Gir Interpretation Zone in Devaliya is the major safari zone of Gir National Park that offers opportunities for tourists to explore the wilderness of the area. It is a perfect place to spot varied species of animals, birds, and mammals. Asiatic Lion, Chowsingha, Sambar Deer, and Jackal. It is an eco-tourism zone that provides a lifetime experience of the wildlife of Gir.
Gir National Park Safari Fees
|Saturday-Sunday & Special Holidays
|Up to 6 persons
|Up to 6 persons
- Per E-permit maximum of 6 adults +1 child* is allowed.
- *Child should be between 3 to 12 years of age
- Guide Fees: INR 100
Jeep Hiring Fees: INR 1300- INR 1500
Interpretation Zone Fee:
|Saturday-Sunday & Special Holidays
|Indian (Per Person)
|Foreigner (Per Person)
Note: Devalia Safari Park (Interpretation Zone) remains closed on every Wednesday.
Wildlife in Gir National Park
Gir National Park of Gujarat is primarily famous for the Asiatic Lions. However, the national park is home to several other species of wild animals, including panther, wild boar, jackal, bear, spotter dear, sambar, leopard, chinkara gazelle, nilgai, jungle cat, mongoose, langur, blackbuck, black-naped hare, porcupine, as well as Indian Chaousingha-the indigenous specie of a four-horned antelope. During monsoon season, nearly 200 distinct varieties of birds can also be observed including the crested serpent eagle, gray partridge, peafowl, jungle bush quail, painted sandgrouse, as well as common green pigeon, and several varieties of doves. Besides, Gir also provides shelter to marsh crocodiles which can be easily sighted within the park location.
Best Time to Visit Gir National Park
The Gir National Park is accessible to visitors from mid October to mid-June. However, the best months to visit the park are from November to February when the climatic conditions remain comfortable and pleasant for a safari tour. One can have the best view of the lions either early in the morning or late afternoon. It is only during this time that most of the animals in the park get active and can be easily sighted.
How to Reach Gir National Park
The nearest airport to the protected forests is Keshod Airport, which is located at a distance of 38 km.
Gir National Park has a railway station of its own by the name of Sasan Gir. The station is situated on the Rajkot-Junagadh and Ahmedabad-Junagadh railway lines. Moreover, there are daily trains that connect the towns of Delwada, Veraval, and Junagarh to the National Park.
Gir forests can be reached easily by roads through buses, cars, or taxis from Diu (110 Km), Junagadh (55 Km), Rajkot (160 Km), Veraval (40 Km), and Ahmedabad (408 Km). To know more details, click here!
Things to do at Gir National Park
Gir National Park is a renowned tourist destination and is visited by a large number of tourists every year. There are a plethora of things to do in Gir National Park that can make the trip memorable. Here are some of the best activities to partake in the national park are:
- Enjoy a jungle safari
- Attend tribal festivals
- Go bird watching
- Buy souvenirs for your loved ones
Attractions in and around Gir National Park
- Interpretation Zone: For tourists, an interpretation zone has been created inside the Park at Devalia, which basically comprises all sorts of habitats and wildlife in the park restricted under chained fences.
- Kamleshwar Dam: This stunning dam inside the sanctuary surrounded by lush greenery is the best place to visit in the morning. At this location, tourists will find a maximum number of marsh crocodiles as compared to any other place in the country
- Gir Bhimchas: This water reservoir inside the park is a must-visit. It is believed among tourists that this reservoir was constructed by Bhim to help his mother, Kunti, get rid of her thirst.
- Somnath: The newly constructed Somnath Temple, which has become a famous tourist attraction, is located at a close distance from the sanctuary.
Check out these useful tips on a tour to Gir National Park:
- Lions are most active early in the morning, and hence, the early morning safaris are ideal for lion viewing.
- Private vehicles of any sort are not allowed inside the park.
- Do not carry any kind of weapon with you inside the forest.
- Be patient if you do not get to see any wildlife inside the forest.
- Do not tease, harm, or hurt any wildlife species. It is considered a major offense and will land you in trouble with the authorities.
- It is advisable to book a safari in advance as the slots are limited.
What is the best time for visiting Gir Forest National Park?
The best time to visit Gir National Park is in the winter season from November to March. During this time, the weather is cool and the chances of sighting animals are greater.
What kind of accommodation facilities are the best nearby Gir National Park?
Accommodation is hardly a problem when it comes to Gir National Park. There are several budget hotels, wildlife resorts, and lodges located in close proximity. Guests receive the best of services and dining facilities at these accommodations. Further, these resorts and other accommodation options are located near the forests, which gives you a chance of being in the company of nature. Some of the best wildlife resorts close to Gir National Park are Gir Birding Lodge, Fern Gir Resort, The Taj Gateway Hotel, the Maneland Jungle Lodge, and Lion Safari Camp.