Dhikala Forest Zone in Jim Corbett National Park
Dhikala is one of the most popular sought after tourist accommodation in Corbett Tiger Reserve. Herd of elephants and spotted Deer pack the vast expanse of famous Dhikala Chaur. This is probably the best place in the Tiger Reserve to spot very rare Hog Deer.
Staying at Dhikala is an experience every wildlife enthusiast looks forward to. Dhangari gate is entrance for Dhikala zone. Dhangari gate is located 18 kms away from Ramnagar while Dhikala Tourist Complex is located 31 Kms inside the Dhangari Gate. Dhikala is open for tourists from 15th November to 15th June. But remains inaccessible during Monsoon season. Dhikala tourist complex overlooks Ramganga Reservoir and is a perfect place to observe Crocodiles and Gharials basking in the banks of Ramganga.
Accommodation : Dhikala Forest Rest House
Different kinds of accommodations are available at Dhikala. Along with the Forest Rest House, Cabins, Hutment, Annexe Dhikala also has 24 bunk beds in Log Huts. The rooms are comfortable with basis amenities.
Food & Other Services : Dhikala Forest Rest House
A very good restaurant caters to the need of visitors staying in the Dhikala Tourist Complex. The restaurant serves buffet meals with good choice of quality foods. A small Canteen is also available for the visitors.
Visitors can enjoy wildlife movie show in the evening and also spend their leisure time reading books in the well stocked library.
Dhikala renowned for its panoramic landscape is located at the edge of the Patli Dun valley, along the Ramganga with the Kanda ridge as a backdrop. The heritage building of the old FRH built in 1890's.Though it was one of the first accommodationfacility to be constructed inside the park, staff did not live here during the monsoons till 1963 since it was highly infested with malaria. The ground floor was used as the DFO office and the top floor for accommodation of the forest officers. It has the unique distinction of being the venue for the launch of the "Project Tiger". Subsequently after 1975, Dhikala was formally opened and accommodation increased due to sudden boost in tourism. Apart from the old FRH building several other kinds of accommodation have also been added. The complex is a complete entity in itself with restaurants, nature guides, jeep safaris, a well stocked library, movie shows in the evening and walking tracks. A post office is available to share experience from the park with letters. Watchtowers located nearby provide excellent view of the entire Ramganga riverbed and the magnificent chaurs.
NEW FRH-Double Bed
OLD FRH-Double Bed
ANNEXI Room- Double Bed
DHIKALA Dormitory (LOG HUT)
The old Gairal Forest complex was built in 1903. The New FRH there has four rooms and eight bed Dormitory, is situated next to the Ramganga River where it enters the National park. The FRH enjoys a tranquil environment of great beauty and is excellent for bird watching. The crocodile pool, nearby offers the opportunity to see the ghadial in the water or basking on the adjoining rocks.
GAIRAL (NEW FRH)
One of the most beautiful Forest Rest House of Corbett overlooking the Ramganga is located at Sarpaduli,30 kms from Ramnagar. It was built in 1908. Elephant movement is fairly common in the area and visitors can even spot Otters in the river nearby. Ghoral can be sighted on the slopes across the Ramganga. Large pools of Mahseer and fish eating birds like kingfisher, fish eagle, etc may be seen in this area.
Sultan, the first FRH on the Dhangari-Dhikala road, has the advantage of privacy and solitude. The adjoining Sal forest patch is one of the densest in the CTR and support large number of Deer and Birds. The FRH was built in 1903 and is an ideal place for small group of visitors.
Canter Safari in Corbett is the best option for those who reside outside the Dhikala Zone and wish to sight the wildlife of the area. Canter is a 16 seater open air bus that drives from Ramnagar to Dhikala and then back to Ramnagar. For canter safari also one needs to make prior booking using the official website.
Chaurs (Grass Lands)
Dhikala is famous for the vast grassland that is packed with Elephants, Spotted Deer, Wild pigs, Hog Deeretc. Often visitors can spot a wild Tiger crossing the grassland or chasing a deer.
Watch tower situated at Dhikala is perfectly located and enables you to get an excellent view of wildlife which are come for grazing into the nearby chaurs, It also gives you an excellent view of entire ramganga riverbed as well as a large section of Dhikala chaur.
This watch tower is located at a 10 mins walk from Dhikala forest rest louse. There is a man made waterhole around fifty yards to the south of the watchtower which makes it the perfect place to spot Deer, elephants, wild pigs and occasionally a Tiger.
Crocodile Point at Gairal
Crocodile pool is located on the short cut from Gairal to the other rest houses west of it. It is also a balcony-like natural structure, which looks down upon a pool almost permanently inhabited by crocodiles.
This jungle track extends from the base of the Dhikala watchtower till the Khinanauli rest house. This area probably has the maximum sighting of tigers in the area.This is due to its ideal location between the hills on one side and the riverbed on the other. Most of the animals cross over in this area while moving down for water. Elephants are also frequent visitors to this track and it is important to be able to reverse your vehicle as easily as you drive it forward, if you plan to drive down this way just before sunset in the summer months. A couple of Serpant Eagles also had their nest high up in a tree beside this track. If patience is one of your virtues, it can almost be guaranteed that this track will not send you back disappointed.
One can spot several types of Deer when in the zone this includes Spotted Deer and others like Para (Axis pornicus), The Sambar (Cervus unicolor), Kakkar (Muntiacus muntjak) which is also called the barking deer due to the hoarse sound it makes resembling the bark of a Dog.
It is one of the best places on earth to spot a tiger and wild elephants.
This area is also bird watchers dream destination. The surrounding forests and the large water body supports a wide diversity of birds in the area.
The chances of spotting a sloth bear are very high in this section of forest. They are attracted by both termites and the sweet nectar of Mahua flowers. The bears have been recorded in intoxicated state when the Mahua ferments in their digestive system.
Open & Close Time
The Dhikala Safari zone of Corbett Tiger Reserve remains open for tourists from 15th November to 15th June.
Corbett Tiger Reserve remains closed during the monsoons as many streams cross the road leading to Dhikala zone and it gets impossible to cross the streams due to high water levels and pressures. Dhikala Ecotourism Zones remains closed for night halts and Day Visit from 16th June to 14th November.
Map of Dhikala
How to Reach Dhikala
One can reach Dhikala via Dhangarhi gate which is 18 kms from Ramnagar. Please view the route map.
Dhikala Range Entry Timing
One can enter Dhikala range via Dhangarhi Gate and the entry timing to Dhikala range from this gate is 10:00 AM till 4:00 PM. Corbett Tiger Reserve remains closed during the monsoons. All ecotourism zones of Corbett Tiger Reserve are closed to visitors for night halts from 15th June to 14th November. The Bijrani Zone remains closed for day visits from 30th June to 14th October. The Dhikala, Lohachaur and Sonanadi Tourism Zones are closed for day visits also from 16th June to 14th November. From 1st to 15th June, these ecotourism zones remains on standby mode and advance reservations are not done as during this time these zones can be shut down by Director, Corbett Tiger Reserve at short notice on considerations of visitor safety due to bad weather conditions.
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