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Pilibhit Tiger Reserve: Planning The Perfect Weekend Getaway

by Nimisha Tewari 11 Jun 2024

Pilibhit Tiger Reserve, located in Uttar Pradesh, India, offers an exciting and enriching experience for wildlife enthusiasts and nature lovers. Spanning an area rich in diverse flora and fauna, it is an ideal destination for a weekend getaway. Here’s a comprehensive guide to planning the perfect trip to Pilibhit Tiger Reserve.

1. Getting There

By Air: The nearest airport is Pantnagar Airport, approximately 90 km from Pilibhit. From the airport, you can hire a taxi or use public transportation to reach the reserve.

By Train: Pilibhit Junction is the nearest railway station, well-connected to major cities like Delhi and Lucknow. From the station, the reserve is a short drive away.

By Road: Pilibhit Tiger Reserve is accessible via road. You can drive or hire a cab from nearby cities like Bareilly (55 km) or Lucknow (240 km).

2. Best Time to Visit

The best time to visit Pilibhit Tiger Reserve is from November to mid June. During these months, the weather is pleasant and the chances of spotting wildlife, including tigers, are higher. The monsoon season (July to September) is also beautiful but may limit wildlife sightings due to dense foliage and rain.

3. Where to Stay

Several accommodation options are available near Pilibhit Tiger Reserve, catering to different budgets and preferences:

Forest Rest Houses: Managed by the Forest Department, these provide basic amenities and an immersive experience in nature.

Hotels and Resorts: Nearby towns like Pilibhit and Bareilly offer a range of hotels and resorts with more comfortable amenities.

Eco-Lodges: For a more eco-friendly stay, consider eco-lodges that focus on sustainable tourism and offer a closer connection to nature.

4. Activities and Attractions

Wildlife Safaris:

  • Jeep Safaris: Available in the mornings and afternoons, jeep safaris are the best way to explore the reserve and spot wildlife, including tigers, leopards, elephants and a variety of bird species.

    Bird Watching: Pilibhit Tiger Reserve is home to over 300 bird species. Bring your binoculars and enjoy spotting colorful and rare birds, especially around the water bodies and dense forests.

    Nature Walks and Trekking: Guided nature walks and trekking trails offer an intimate experience with the forest, allowing you to explore the flora and smaller fauna.

    Photography: The reserve's diverse landscapes and rich wildlife provide ample opportunities for photography enthusiasts.

    5. Essential Tips

    Permits and Entry: Obtain necessary permits from the Forest Department for safaris and entry into the reserve. It's advisable to book safaris in advance, especially during peak seasons.

    Guides and Naturalists: Hiring a knowledgeable guide or naturalist enhances your experience, as they can provide insights into the wildlife and ecology of the reserve.

    What to Pack:

    • Clothing: Pack light, comfortable clothing in neutral colors. Include warm layers for early morning and evening safaris during winter.
    • Footwear: Sturdy, comfortable walking shoes are essential for safaris and nature walks.
    • Accessories: Don’t forget a hat, sunglasses, sunscreen, insect repellent, binoculars and a good camera with extra batteries.

    Health and Safety: Carry a basic first-aid kit and any personal medications. Follow all safety instructions given by guides and park authorities, and maintain a safe distance from wildlife.

    Respect the Environment: Follow the principles of responsible tourism. Do not litter, disturb wildlife or damage plants. Adhere to the reserve's rules and regulations to ensure the preservation of its natural beauty.

    6. Nearby Attractions

    Katarniaghat Wildlife Sanctuary: Located about 150 km from Pilibhit, this sanctuary is known for its diverse wildlife and picturesque landscapes, making it a great additional stop.

    Dudhwa National Park: Approximately 200 km from Pilibhit, Dudhwa offers another fantastic opportunity for wildlife viewing and exploring different habitats.

    Local Villages and Culture: Visit nearby villages to experience the local culture, cuisine and traditional crafts of the region.


    A weekend getaway to Pilibhit Tiger Reserve promises a blend of adventure, relaxation, and a deep connection with nature. By planning carefully and respecting the natural environment, you can enjoy a memorable and enriching experience. Whether you're spotting tigers on a thrilling safari or enjoying the tranquility of the forest, Pilibhit Tiger Reserve offers something for every nature lover.

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