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Gir National Park is situated in the Junagarh district of Gujarat. Gir Wildlife Sanctuary/Park of India is world's only natural habitat of Asiatic lion.

Gir National Park

Location: Junagarh in Gujarat, India
Total Area: 1412 sq km
Core Area: 258 sq km
Established In: 1965
Main Attractions: The only abode of the Asiatic Lion in the whole world
Best Time: Mid October to Mid June

Gir National Park, established in the Junagarh district of Gujarat, is spread over an area of 1412 sq km. The park holds the distinction of being the only natural habitat of Asiatic Lions in the entire world. The population of the Asiatic lions in Gir is estimated to be somewhere around 300. Gir Wildlife Sanctuary of India is also home to a race of cattle herders, known as the Maldharis. The sanctuary has Tulsi Shyam and Kankai Mata sulphur springs inside its premises, along with a number of Hindu worship places. The best time to visit the Gir Wildlife Park of Gujarat is during the period of mid-October to mid-June.

The topography of Gir National Park of India is formed of low hills, covered with mixed deciduous trees like Teak, Acacia, Jamun, Tendu and Dhak. Dotting the landscape are large patches of grasslands. The area along the main rivers and streams of the park boasts of a distinctive stretch of vegetation. The species found there include Jambu, Karanj, Umro, Vad, Kalam, Charal, Sirus and Amli trees. The coastal borders of Gir Wildlife Park were planted with Prosopis and Casuarinas as part of the afforestation plan carried out there.

Gir National Park Gir Wildlife Sanctuary of Gujarat serves as the only abode of the Asiatic lions in the whole world. It is the only place where you can find the majestic animals in their natural habitat. The best time to sight an Asiatic Lion is dawn or dusk, when they are freely roaming in the jungle. Gir Wildlife Park of Gujarat is also quite renowned for housing a significant population of leopards, which is presently estimated to be around 210.

Apart from these extremely popular species, you may also watch Indian Gazelle, Four-horned Antelope, Small Indian Mongoose, Indian Flying Foe, Chital, Nilgai, Pale Hedgehog, Black Bucks, Wild Boar, Sambar, Grey Musk Shrew, Indian Hare, Chinkara, etc. Other lesser-known animal species seen at the park include Small Indian Civet, Indian Pangolin, Indian Porcupine, Ratel, Indian Fox, Jackal, Jungle Cat, Desert Cat, Rusty Spotted Cat, etc.

Mash crocodiles can be easily spotted at Kamleshwar Dam, situated inside premises of the Gir National Park. Then, there is its snake population, consisting of Indian Rock Python, Indian Cobra, Common Krait, Saw Scaled Viper, Russell's Viper, etc.

Bird Species
As many as 300 species of birds can be found inhabiting the forests of the Gir Wildlife Park, situated in the state of Gujarat. The wide variety of birds offered by the park makes it a heaven for bird watchers. The most commonly found species include Bush Quail, Paradise Flycatcher, Painted Sandgrouse, Pied Woodpecker, Creset Serpent Eagle, Black Headed Cuckoo Shrike, Bonelli's Eagle and Grey Patridge.

How to Reach Gir National Park

By Air: The nearest airport is situated at Keshod, at a distance of 86 km.

By Rail: Sasan railway station, situated one km away, is the nearest to Gir.

By Road: Taxis as well as buses are easily available from Junagarh.