Find your destination

Find other destination

Nagzira Wildlife Sanctuary is located in the Bhandara district in the northeastern corner of Maharashtra. The small reserve covering 152 sq. km. is an important corridor that links southern and central forested areas like the Tadoba-Andhari and Kanha Tiger Reserves. Nagzira is often referred to as the Green Oasis of Vidharba. Tigers, leopards, dholes, jungle cats, sloth bears, hyaenas, jackals, wolves and herbivores like gaur and sambar have made this their home. There is also an astonishing variety of butterflies and an interesting amphibian and reptilian population at Nagzira.

  • Plan your trip
  • Wild life
  • Habitat
  • Places to See
  • Useful tips
  • History

Best season 

The sanctuary is open for visitors from October to June. It is closed during the rains when the wind velocity is also at a maximum. The average annual rainfall is about 1,100-1,500 mm. February to May is the best season for a visit. The summer temperature maximum may rise to 450C and the winter temperature minimum may drop to about 6.50C.


Sanctuary Asia encourages sustainability in travel, so you can choose from one of the TOFTigers, PUG eco-certified lodges in the park vicinity and help sustain this destination.  - See more at:
Sanctuary Asia encourages sustainability in travel, so you can choose from one of the TOFTigers, PUG eco-certified lodges in the park vicinity and help sustain this destination.  - See more at:
Sanctuary Asia encourages sustainability in travel, so you can choose from one of the TOFTigers, PUG eco-certified lodges in the park vicinity and help sustain this destination.  - See more at:

Sanctuary Asia encourages sustainability in travel, so you can choose from one of the TOFTigers, PUG eco-certified lodges in the park vicinity and help sustain this destination.

Muba Jungle Camp Near the Pitazari Gate

Sanctuary Asia encourages sustainability in travel, so you can choose from one of the TOFTigers, PUG eco-certified lodges in the park vicinity and help sustain this destination.  - See more at:

Clean, comfortable forest guesthouses within the reserve provide modest accommodation. Food is also available within the reserve. For details, contact: Conservator of Forests (Wildlife) at Nagpur. Tel.: 0712-528953. Or Deputy Conservator (Wildlife) at Gondia. Tel.: 07182-26399. 

Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation, Express Towers, 9th Floor, Nariman Point, Mumbai – 400021. Tel.: 022-2024482/ 4522/ 4584/ 4514; Fax: 022-2024521.

TransportBy Air: Nagpur airport, 122 km. away, is the nearest airport. 

By Rail: Gondia railway station is 45 km. away. 

By Road: A three-hour taxi-ride from Nagpur (122 km.) or a one-hour drive from Gondia (45 km.) would take you to the reserve. Sakoli (22 km.) on National Highway 6 and the district headquarters at Bhandara (60 km.) are also connected by road to the reserve. The nearest bus-stand is at Sakoli. The main entrance to the park is at the Nagzira gate which may be approached from Sakoli via Pitezari. (Sakoli to Pitezari: 11.5 km. and Pitezari to Nagzira: 11.3 km.) The park has seven other entrances, namely Kosamtondi, Murpar, Murdoli, Balapur, Pongezara, Mangezari and the Chorkhamara gate.

Tiger Panthera tigris, leopard P. pardus, jackal Canis aureus, jungle cat Felis chaus and the sloth bear Melursus ursinus are some of the animals in the reserve. The spotted hyena Hyaena hyaena is a scavenger that prowls about the reserve in search of kills.

Chital Axis axis, the chousingha Tetracerus quadricornis, gaur Bos gaurus, nilgai Boselaphus tragocamelus, sambar Cervus unicolor, wild boar Sus scrofa and muntjac Muntiacus muntjac are the primary prey species.

Notable amongst the 49 species of butterflies found in the reserve are the common rose, common mormon, common sailor, common Indian crow, black rajan and the lime butterfly.

Reptiles like the Indian rock python, dhaman, Indian cobra, Russel's viper, checkered keelback and common monitor have made these forests their home.

Many interesting varieties of frogs and toads like the tree frog, bullfrog, the six-toed frog and the uncommon toad Ramanella montana are found here.

The Nagzira lake is full of several varieties of freshwater fish. Major carp species like catla Catla catla, rohu Labeo rohita and mrigal Cirrhina mrigala, the shivda Wallago attu and vadas Megalops spp. are found in the lake.

The avifauna of the sanctuary is one of its highlights. Over 166 species belonging to 16 orders and 47 families have been recorded here. 13 endangered species also reside in Nagzira. The Little Grebe may be occasionally seen on floating vegetation. Cormorants and egrets are usually seen in mixed colonies. Various species of herons and storks, the Black Ibis and the Crested Honey Buzzard are also seen. The Blackwinged Kite and the Pariah Kite are residents of Nagzira while the Brahminy Kite is a local migrant. The Golden Oriole and the Blackheaded Oriole may also be seen in the reserve. Barbets, woodpeckers, hornbills, pitas, larks, shrikes, warblers, flycatchers and swallows are all found here, adding to the enormous diversity.

The reserve consists of semi-mountainous terrain with altitudes ranging from 30 m. to about 560 m. The slopes form a part of the Gaikhuri hills of the southern Satpuras. The peaks are interspersed with narrow plateaux and the eastern stretch is predominantly flatland. The Garad-bun nalla, Singhori nalla, Katethuwa nalla, Alewahi panghat and Nagzira lake drain the area. The reserve has mainly laterite soils with sandy loam at lower altitudes and the rocky variety on the steep slopes. Calcareous soils occur at the foothills and along nallas. Moderate erosion occurs on these lands: Rill and gully erosion on the slopes and sheet erosion in the plains. The composition of rocks includes the Sakoli series comprising phyllites, slates and chiovites with chlorite; and the Saunsar series with felspar and biolite.


Diverse vegetation ranging from dry mixed forests to moist forests characterise this reserve. Nearly 200 plant species thrive here.

The upper canopy is formed of deciduous trees like Anogeissus latifolia, Bauhinia racemosa, Bridelia retusa, Butea monosperma, Kydia calycina, Mallotus philippensis and Sterculia urens.

The middle layer comprises smaller trees, shrubs and herbs like Clerodendrum serratum, Diospyros melanoxylon, Gardenia latifolia, Holarrhena antidysentrica, Lagerstroemia parviflora. Lianas and climbers like Acacia pennata, Aspidopteris cordata, Cocculus hirsutus, Dioscorea bulbifera, D. pentaphylla, Hemidesmus indicus, Ichnocarpus frutescens and Smilax zeylanica also grow at this level.

Smaller herbs and grasses form the undergrowth soon after the monsoon. Trees include dhawda Anogeissus latifolia, khair Acacia catechu, mahul Bauhinia vahlii, asana Bridelia retusa, apta Bauhinia racemosa, amaltas Cassia fistula, tendu Diospyros melanoxylon, awala Emblica officinalis, dhaman Grewia tiliaefolia, ghogari Gardenia latifolia, kuda Holarrhena antidysentrica, warnaga Kydia calycina, bondara Lagerstroemia parviflora, kamela Mallotus philippensis, pandhari Murraya exotica, biba Semecarpus anacardium, kadhai Sterculia urens, padal Sterespermum suaveolens, sagwan Tectona grandis and ain Terminalia tomentosa.

There are watch cabins at Andharban, Bandarchuwa, Ghatmara, Kapala deva and Pongezara. Watch towers have also been erected at Nagzira hill, Nagzira waste-weir, Nagzira lake, Chital road and the Nagzira well near the lake. Hides have also been proposed at Umar nalla, Katethuwa nalla and overlooking the salt licks on Tiger road and Bison road within the reserve.

Gaur and Sambar prefer the hilly tracts and often graze in the early mornings and at dusk. They mainly eat grass but also browse on leaves and may occasionally try bamboo shoot as well. Chital, on the other hand, may often be seen during the day on the flat meadows near Nagzira lake. Barking deer prefer hilly, wooded forests with dense undergrowth where there is a profusion of leaves, grasses and fruit. On the undulating slopes, chousingha may be seen in the open grasslands. Nilgai prefer grass and patches of shrub on the outskirts of the sanctuary. They seem to like the Zizyphus fruit and may be seen feeding on these. The Indian Mouse deer or Chevrotain hides away on the grass-covered hillsides.

Sloth bears are seen where fruits like mango, jamun, figs, bel, tendu and insects like termites occur in abundance. They often seek shelter in caves and dens. Bears love honey and the mahua flower. 

Packs of dhole wander about in these forests where there is abundant food, shade and water. They breed around November-December in caves and crevices. 

Carnivores like the tiger and panther are seen in parts where there is adequate water, ambush cover and substantial prey.  

The endangered Chinese Pangolins are nocturnal in habit. They are not sighted often, but they are known to live in burrows or among rocks and feed on termites. 

The Barheaded Goose, a migrant from Ladakh and Tibet, inhabits Chorkhamara tank located adjacent to the sanctuary. Raptors prefer hilly areas where roosting sites are available in plenty. The Lesser Florican inhabits grasslands. The Indian Great Black Woodpecker may be seen in the moist Andharban area, though it is also distributed in the entire Western Ghats.

The nearest petrol pumps are located at Sakoli town, 22 km. from the reserve.

The nearest public telephone, bank, telegram and post office is situated at Sakoli.

There are government and private hospitals at Sakoli, Bhandara and Gondia. 

Tourists may take elephant rides into the sanctuary. There is also a tourist complex with slides and towers.

Be sure to carry binoculars and a bird book and also a camera for photography.

Useful contacts

Deputy Conservator of Forests, Wildlife Division, Gondia District, Maharashtra. Tel.: 07184-26399.

The area was declared a reserve forest on February 20, 1879 under Section 34 of the Indian Forest Act of 1878. In 1970, Nagzira was declared a wildlife sanctuary. In 1984, it was brought under the charge of the Deputy Conservator of Forests (Wildlife), Nagpur. 

Only one village named Thadezari is located within the boundary of the reserve.The Mahadeo temple at Pongezara, bordering the sanctuary attracts huge crowds during Mahashivaratri.