4 safaris and tigers on 3 of them; nothing really to complain about (!!)… but the ‘magical’ Ranthambhore sighting still hadn't happened. What is that? Well, on every trip, Ranthambhore always throws up one sighting that is way beyond even memorable. The experience is hard to explain, but imagine a high of winning something coupled with the joy of seeing something magical in action. And you might get slightly closer to the feeling I speak about – heart racing, senses tingling and your face in a perpetual (if slightly goofy) smile. That is what that Ranthambhore sighting is all about.
As if on cue, one little fella appeared out of nowhere. He came and sat less than 10 feet from one of the gypsies. Responsible citizens that they were, they drove away after a bit to put space between themselves and the tiger. And promptly, his brother joined him and they both started walking towards the waterhole, following different routes. So here we were, spoilt for choice, two tigers walking around us as we waited, sometimes they were so close that I could only get a picture of the tiger’s eye! It was heady, magical stuff and for those on their first trip, this was just unbelievable.
Both brothers walked alongside, then behind our jeeps for a while, as if posing on the catwalk. Then, presumably bored, they settled into the waterhole for a peaceful drink together. It was a companionable silence between humans and tigers, with the only audible sounds being the faint slurps of the water and the clicks of the cameras. For the kids, seeing a tiger up close and so comfortable was incredible. For the other adults, it was an opportunity to whip out their mobile phones to take a picture. Yes – mobile phones. For me personally, the challenge was to be able to focus the tiger with my 500mm lens. They were that close!
Ranthambhore Trip Guide
And come prepared for the bumpy roads, Ranthambhore's only downside is that the roads on some routes (especially Zone 4) are really bad.