The Ranthambhor National park (Tiger Reserve) lies on the junction of Aravali and Vindhyas just 14 Km from Sawai Madhopur in Eastern Rajasthan. It sprawls over a varying and undulating landscape. The scenery changes dramatically from gentle and steep slopes of the Vindhyas and sharp and conical hills of the Aravali. A tenth century fort also blends amicably with the background. Pure sands of Dhok (Anogeissus pendula) interspersed with grasslands at the plateaus; meadows in valleys and luxuriant foliage around the canals make the jungle. Three big lakes - Padam Talab (meaning Lake), Malik Talab and Raj Bagh - are similar turquoises studded in the vast forest that abounds with aquatic vegetation including duckweeds, lilies and lotus.
A significant geological feature within the Ranthambore National park
is the 'Great Boundary Fault' where the Vindhaya plateau meets the
Aravali range. The Rivers Chambal in the South and the Banas in the
North bound the National Park. The park is dotted with steep rocky hills
and the dominating architecture of Ranthambhor Fort (built in the 10th
century), adds to its landscape. The rugged park terrain alternates
between dry deciduous forest, open grassy meadow, dotted by several
lakes and rivers that are only made passable by rough roads built and
maintained by the Forest Service.
The tiger is not the only attraction at Ranthambhor; although it is the
one park resident that people come to see. A variety of birds including
Owlets, the ubiquitous Langur (monkey), Leopard, Caracal, Hyena, Jackal,
Jungle Cat, marsh Crocodiles, Wild Boar, Bears and various species of
Deer are the other attractions at the Ranthambhore National Park.