Planning to book Tadoba safari? Wondering how to visit Tadoba National Park. Here's our step-by-step guide on how to easily book the best jungle safari in the Tadoba Tiger Reserve of India. This will clear all your confusions and help you get a legit Tadoba jungle safari booking. #Tadoba #Safari #India

Easy Tadoba Jungle Safari Booking With This Step-by-step Guide

Last Updated on December 12, 2022 by Soumya

Are you planning to travel to Tadoba National Park but are really confused how to go about a Tadoba jungle safari booking – online or offline? Well, then you are at the right place.

Because that is exactly what I am going to tell you! How to easily book a Tadoba tiger safari whether you wish to do it online or through an agent?

I recently visited Tadoba-Andhari Tiger Reserve (TATR) with my family and we were thrilled by the number of tigers we saw. Gosh, we even spotted a leopard! But I agree, the whole jungle safari booking process at Tadoba can be a little challenging especially with so many websites coming up right on the first page of Google. Which one to choose and when and how?

I am going to clear all doubts here in this easy, step-by-step guide to Tadoba national park jungle safari booking. I am also going to link to the official websites where you can view legit safari booking prices and easily do your online booking for Tadoba tiger safari.

Ultimate guide to Tadoba safari booking

Through this dedicated guide, I will take you step-by-step through the entire Tadoba tiger safari booking process including different types of safari, safari prices, how to rent a gypsy, choosing the best gate and so on.

What are the different types of Tadoba tiger safari?

There are 4 kinds of safaris available in Tadoba National Park. They are as follows:

  • Core safari: This takes you to the core of the jungle with a higher chance of sighting. Core safaris tend to fill up faster than any of the others because of higher demand. Hence, their pricing is a little complicated as we will see later.
  • Buffer safari: This includes a safari of the Tadoba buffer zone. Since the number of tigers at Tadoba has been growing consistently and each tiger needs its own territory, chances of sightings in the buffer zone have also gone up significantly.
  • Night safari: I have heard mixed reviews about night safaris. Some people have had good sightings but many others haven’t seen a thing. It is definitely an experience to have especially on a full moon night. Only disadvantage is you won’t really get good pictures in the dark.
  • Full-day safari: This is for photographers/videographers who wish to spend longer in the forest. It is an expensive option.

What are Tadoba jungle safari gates/zones?

But before we get started with the details Tadoba jungle safari booking, it is crucial to understand the concept of core and buffer gates at Tadoba National Park.

TATR is divided into core and buffer zones. While only safari is allowed in core areas, various ecotourism activities like boating, nature walks are allowed in the buffer zones. Many resorts located in this zone such as the Tadoba Jungle Camp also facilitate these activities.

Ideally, the core gates get filled up first because they have the maximum number of big cat sightings. So, you have to really plan ahead for Tadoba core zones.

Core gates of Tadoba

There are 4 zones in Tadoba each with their core and buffer gates. These are the Moharli Zone (M), Navegaon Zone (N), Kolara Zone (K), Pangadi and Zari Zone (PZ).

Moharli Zone is the busiest and probably the oldest zone in Tadoba National Park. It has two core gates: Moharli and Khutwanda. Navegaon and Kolara have one each. PZ zone has two core gates. In total, there are 6 core gates in Tadoba.

Have a look at the table below for an idea on how many safaris or safari vehicles are available at each of these gates. Note that as many as 16 gypsies enter through the Moharli gate every time. Yet, this is the gate that gets sold out first!

Please note that no night safaris are available at any of Tadoba’s core gates.

ZoneCore gate nameMorning safarisEvening safaris
MMoharli Gate1616
MKhutwanda Gate55
NNavegaon Gate55
KKolara Gate77
PZPangadi Gate11
PZZari Gate22
Pangada and Zari Gates actually take you to a very different region of TATR called the Kolsa region. This is the new and upcoming area of TATR.

Buffer gates of Tadoba

Each of the 4 Tadoba zones has its own buffer gates. Junona Gate in Moharli and Palasgaon Gate in Kolara are the only ones with night safaris.

We have noticed that it is not very difficult to get a jungle safari booking at the buffer gates of Tadoba. That’s why, you do not need to plan too much in advance.

Have a look at the table below for a brief idea on the numbers.

ZoneBuffer gate nameMorning safarisEvening safarisNight safaris
MAgarzari Gate66NA
MDevada Gate66NA
MAdegaon Gate66NA
MJunona Gate666
MMamla Gate66NA
NNavegaon Ramdegi Gate66NA
NNimdela Gate33NA
KKolara Chauradeo Gate66NA
KAlizanza Gate66NA
KMadnapur Gate66NA
KShirkheda Gate66NA
KBelara Gate33NA
KPalasgaon GateNANA6
PZPangadi Aswal Chuha Gate66NA
PZZari Peth33NA

Which is the best zone in Tadoba?

Moharli is the most popular (it is hard to zero down on the best) zone in Tadoba. Moharli Zone is the most accessible, has the highest number of gates, and is also home to some of best jungle resorts. That said, Moharli Gate is also one of the most crowded.

If you wish to do a relatively uncrowded core safari, you can also enter via Navegaon or Kolara. For example, we did 2 core safaris from Navegaon and had 4 sightings.

Maya, the Queen of Tadoba, is based in Navegaon too. So you have higher chances of seeing her if you enter through Navegaon core.

How to book a jungle safari in Tadoba?

You can book a jungle safari in Tadoba either online or through your hotel. The online process is pretty easy and can be easily done through the official website of Tadoba Andhari Tiger reserve.

The process of booking your Tadoba safari online

Click here to open the Tadoba jungle safari booking site.

  • On the menu, you can see Safari on top left which will give you two options: Regular and Tatkal.
  • Click on Regular if you are booking before 3 days of the safari.
  • Click on Tatkal (Urgent) if you are booking between 1-3 days of the safari. Be aware that fewer gypsies are available for Tatkal booking and they get filled up very fast.
  • Enter tour date, select zone, and voila! You can see the availability for your preferred date +/- 2 days.
  • Click on the available number (note that zeroes are not clickable) and you will be prompted to enter your phone number.
  • You can then register yourself and complete the booking.
  • The portal accepts both credit and debit cards.
  • Once you receive the confirmed booking in your email, download a copy in your mobile to show at the gate. Print outs aren’t necessary.
  • Also use the booking at the entrance check-post to enter into TATR. If you do not have a copy handy, you will need to pay INR 100 to enter. Remember mobile network is bad within the park. Only Reliance Jio works here.

What do you need to book a Tadoba jungle safari?

  • A valid id proof – voter id/passport/Aadhar card/PAN Card/Driving license.
  • Phone number where you can get the OTP.
  • An email address where you will receive the booked tickets.

If you feel too overwhelmed by the online booking process or simply wish to avoid the hassle, ask your hotel to book a Tadoba tiger safari for you. They usually do it for an extra charge.

Important note

Please note that there are many phony websites that will lure you into booking with them. However, what I have to linked to in my post is the only legitimate one. Also the least expensive.

What is the cost of a Tadoba safari?

The cost of a Tadoba safari varies by the type of safari you decide to book. Core safaris can cost anywhere between INR 4125 – INR 11125. Buffer safaris cost between INR 3625 – INR 4625.

Have a look at Tadoba’s official website here for a complete list of safari prices.

Core safaris are not just more expensive than buffer safaris, their pricing is also more complicated to understand.

If you plan to reserve a core safari 60-120 days prior to the safari date, the cost is significantly higher than if you plan to do it between 4-59 days. This might sound counterintuitive but has been done to regulate rampant pre-booking by resorts and agents. I highly recommend booking your safari between 4-59 days before your intended safari date – the earlier the better.

How do I book a gypsy in Tadoba?

A gypsy booking is included in the safari pricing at Tadoba National Park. So, you do not need to book a gypsy separately in Tadoba.

How to travel from your hotel to the safari gate?

One of my readers asked me this pertinent question on how to travel between the hotel and Tadoba safari gate. That is when I realized that I should probably have a section on it on the blog post.

Here’s my answer to this question.

  • If you book your safari through the hotel, they will have a gypsy pick you up from the hotel to the safari gate.
  • If you book the safari on your own, you will need a private transfer from the hotel to the gate. For example, we had a car with us for the entire time we were in Tadoba and our driver picked and dropped us all the time.
  • However, that said, some hotels can arrange a gypsy to pick you up from their premises even if you have booked the safari on your own. They might charge some extra money for the services but it is worth it. So check with the hotel manager or reception when you arrive.

Which is the best time to visit Tadoba?

Summer time, March – June, is the best time to visit Tadoba for tiger sightings. Because the temperatures are high and vegetation is sparse, it is easy to sight the big cats as they come out to drink water.

However, if you are looking for a more comfortable time to visit Tadoba with decent sightings, winter is good. Between December – February, temperatures are lower and it is still easy to see the animals through the not-so-dense foliage.

Important points to note

  • Tadoba National Park is closed to tourists during the monsoon months of July-September.
  • Core gates are closed every Tuesday.
  • Buffer gates are closed every Wednesday.

Tadoba safari timings

The safari timings between November – February are:

  • Morning: 6:30 – 10:30am
  • Evening: 2 – 6pm
  • Night: 7 – 10pm

Between March – April & October, the timings are:

  • Morning: 6 -10am
  • Evening: 2:30 – 6:30 pm

Between May – June, the timings are:

  • Morning: 5:30 – 9:30am
  • Evening: 3 – 7pm

Important tips for Tadoba jungle safari

  • Book multiple safaris and plan to stay at least 2-3 days for higher chances of sighting.
  • You cannot use mobile phones to click pictures inside the national park. If possible, get a camera with a zoom lens. All my pictures were clicked with my Nikon 55-300mm lens.
  • It is going to be really dusty inside the park. Please bring a scarf to cover your hair and mask to cover your nose and mouth.
  • If you are visiting in winter, morning and night safaris are going to be cold. Do not forget to carry a light jacket.
  • There’s usually one rest stop midway during the safari. Plan accordingly.
  • Carry some snacks in case you get hungry midway.

Other FAQ about Tadoba jungle safari booking

How many tigers are there in Tadoba?

According to latest reports, there are 115 tigers and 151 leopards in Tadoba-Andhari Tiger Reserve and buffer areas. The number is continuously growing.

How many gates are there in Tadoba?

There are 6 core gates and 16 buffer gates in Tadoba National Park. Have a look at our gates section to explore in detail.

Is Tadoba closed on Tuesday?

Tadoba core gates are closed on Tuesday. But buffer gates are open.

How far is Tadoba from Nagpur?

Tadoba is approximately 140 kms from Nagpur. It takes nearly 3 hours to get to Tadoba Moharli Gate from the Nagpur Airport. Some of the roads are bad and can take longer.

How can I go to Tadoba from Nagpur?

You can go to Tadoba from Nagpur by car or private taxi. Book an Ola/Uber trip once you land at the airport or hire a local taxi that can be with you throughout the trip.

I highly recommend hiring a local guy who knows his way around the place instead of driving yourself. If you are struggling to get reliable drivers, drop me a line here and I will be happy to share my contacts with you.

Loved our Tadoba jungle safari booking guide? Pin it for later!

Soumya is an acclaimed travel writer who has traveled to 30+ countries and lived in 8 while pursuing her passion for history and culture. Her writings have been published in BBC Travel, Architectural Digest, National Herald, and many more. She loves exploring world heritage sites and has a deep affinity for everything ancient, especially the lost civilizations of Mesoamerica!

18 thoughts on “Easy Tadoba Jungle Safari Booking With This Step-by-step Guide

  1. Superb blog with actual information.
    Really helpful to plan ahead. Truly speaking… Browsing through the innumerable websites for safari information, I got confused to as which one is the real one… there were so many fraud websites. But after reading your blog, got the confidence to plan the trip ahead.

  2. Very nice, detailed penned down blog.. It seems very very realistic and honest.. Thank you so much Soumya. Very useful…

  3. Planning to visit Tadoba in May and was searching for the blog to understand the step by step procedure to book Safari… This article is very informative and helpful.

  4. this blog post is amazing
    thank you so much for taking the time to help others out there

    my question is

    – does the safari booking for other parks (eg Kanha and Bandhavgarh) operate the same way? what is the official booking site for those parks?

    – if you can do the booking yourself, then technically there is no reason to ask your hotel/home stay to do it? i am confused because some of these accommodations have all-inclusive package that include the safari trip and their own guide, which i guess may be better than the random guide you get assigned on the day of visit?

    – each gypsy can fit 4-6 people. so can you put random passenger names, in addition to the booker’s name, if it is undecided at the time of booking who will be joining you in the same vehicle? do the park officers actually check everyone’s ID on the day of safari? or only the booker’s

    thank you

    1. Hi there, glad you found my Tadoba safari booking post helpful. I am going to answer your questions in as much detail as possible here.
      1. Kanha, Bandhavgarh, Pench, Satpura are a little more streamlined and easier. You just get on to Madhya Pradesh Govt Forest Department website here and book your preferred safari. I am soon going to come up with a Kanha booking guide which I am sure you’ll find helpful.
      2. Yes, you can do the booking yourself. There’s absolutely no need to ask your hotel to do the booking for you. But many resorts and hotels offer it because of the convenience it provides. Basically, they take care of your planning while you enjoy your stay and safari. Usually, the top end resorts will provide you with a naturalist guide but will charge a premium too. The cheaper hotels don’t provide you with guides. Every gypsy will have a govt guide assigned randomly to it. The naturalist guide is over and above that.
      When you book a safari through your hotel, they will ensure that the gypsy comes and picks you up from your hotel. If you book the safari yourself, you will need to travel to the gate on your own or ask the hotel to arrange for a pickup. They usually do it for free or a minimal charge.
      3. You cannot put random names while booking gypsies for Tadoba. You’ll need to be sure who is traveling with you so that they are on the booking list. Officials at the gate will check the IDs of each and every person on the gypsy. However, things are a little easier with MP national parks. For example in Kanha and Bandhavgarh, you can add travelers later also.

      1. i see. thanks so much! your replies are incredibly helpful.

        – how do you add travelers later for Kanha and Bandhavgarh? you have to do that in-person, on the spot, at the park gate?

        – in your opinion, from the multiple tiger viewing trips you have gone on eg Tadoba, Kanha, do you think it’s worth hiring an additional guide (the naturalist guide) on top of the govt guide? the govt guide is assigned to you at random, and therefore may vary in ‘quality’? i fully understand it’s nature , but i also prefer not to drive around all day, day-after-day, without seeing anything, especially if the poor sighting is due to an inexperienced guide. i ask this because i 1) plan to do my own booking (i want specific gates in each park), and 2) will not be staying at high end places. i am looking at homestay or mid-budget. i shortlisted some of these places because the owner of these places have reputation of being experienced guides themselves. i dont know how much their service cost yet. but will consider hiring them but only if there’s value in it.

        – also, how do you recommend going from Nagpur to Jabalpur? or more specifically from Tadoba to Kanha then to Bandhavgarh? does this need to be a taxi ride throughout? i cant find direct flights from Nagpur to Jabalpur, but perhaps there is a train?

        – which parks have been your favorite or most productive so far for tiger sightings?

        thank you, keep up the good blog!

        1. 1. You can add extra travelers to your Kanha and Bandhavgarh gypsies online. There is an option that says add more travelers after you have done your booking.
          2. Naturalist guides definitely add an extra layer of in-depth knowledge to your wildlife safaris. But honestly, you do not need them. The govt-assigned guides do a pretty good job too. The guides usually have an idea where the tigers are or keep communicating with guides on other gypsies to find out if anyone else has seen them. Honestly, you do not need a naturalist guide to see more tigers. The usual guide will show you just fine. A naturalist/expert guide is more helpful when it comes to background knowledge about the tigers, their history, the territories, etc. For example, when we stayed at Tadoba Jungle Camp, I got a chance to interact with Himanshu Bagde who is often referred to as the Tiger Man of India. He knew everything about Maya, the Tadoba tigress. He had been following her ever since her birth and had written about her in detail. The amount of knowledge he shared with us about Maya made our sighting really special.
          3. Tadoba to Nagpur is 4 hours. Nagpur to Kanha is 6 hours and Kanha to Bandhavgarh is 5 hours. If you take a train (you can find details on from Nagpur to Jabalpur, it is about 8 hours. Jabalpur to Kanha/Bandhavgarh is 4 hours. You wouldn’t save much on time or cost. If you want to save to save on some costs, you can take a train from Chandrapur to Jabalpur (train journey is 11 hours).
          4. Tadoba is great especially the Moharli and Navegaon gates. Even Bandhavgarh has good reviews. Kanha Mukki gate sightings have been good this year. I am traveling there this weekend, so I should be able to tell you after that.
          If you need any other information, please feel free to reach out on my Contact Us page.

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