The Pench National Park and Tiger Reserve is located in the lower foothills of the Satpura Range on the southern border of Madhya Pradesh. Pench National Park and Tiger Reserve is named after Pench river which flows from north to south through the National Park dividing it into two almost equal parts. One part is located on the southern boundary of Madhya Pradesh and the other one is bordering Maharashtra, in the districts of Seoni and Chhindwara.
The Pench River bisects the Pench reserve into two nearly equal parts; the 147.61 km² of the Western Block which falls in the Gumtara Range of the Chhindwara Forest Division and the 145.24 km² of the Eastern Block in the Karmajhiri Range of the Seoni Forest Division. The total area of the Reserve is 757.89 km² of which the Pench National Park, forming the core zone of the Reserve, covers 292.85 km², and the Mowgli Pench Wildlife Sanctuary is 118.30 km² in area. A Buffer Zone constituted by Reserve Forests, Protected Forests and Revenue land, occupies 346.73 km².
Pench is one of the top most destinations for wildlife tourism in Madhya Pradesh, albeit a little less famous and popular than the other star attractions of the Madhya Pradesh tiger circuit- Kanha and Bandhavgarh. Pench National park is famous for large herds of Gaur (Indian Bison), Cheetal, Sambar, Nilgai, Wild Dog and Wild Pig. The key predator is the Tiger followed by Leopard, Wild Dog and Wolf. Other animals include Sloth Bear, Chousingha, Chinkara, Barking Deer, Jackal, Fox, Palm Civet, Small Indian Civet, Jungle Cat, Hyena, Porcupine etc.
Apart from the animals, the Pench National Park and Tiger Reserve also boasts more than 210 species of birds including several migratory ones. Some of the most commonly seen birds in this park include the Pea fowl, Red Jungle Fowl, Crow Pheasant, Crimson Breasted Barbet, Red Vented Bulbul, Racket Tailed Drongo, Magpie Robin, Lesser Whistling Teal, etc.
The Park is situated in the Seoni district of southern Madhya Pradesh and runs in continuation with Pench National Park in Maharashtra. It is situated 82 Kms. (2 hours of drive) and is well connected by an all weather metalloid road network to other important places in Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra. The nearest rail head of Nagpur- Jabalpur (192 Kms.) serves as a comfortable air and railhead.
Best Time to visit:
The Pench National Park is open to the visitors from October 16th to June 30th each year and closed during the rainy seasons (July – September). The temperature during winter season i.e. from October to January ranges between 16 degrees to 3 degree Centigrade. From February to March the temperature varies from 16 degrees to 26 degrees and in summers i.e April to June the temperature varies from 26 degrees to a 42 degrees centigrade.
How to reach:
Air: If you are planning to travel by air, Nagpur is the nearest airport connected well with other Indian cities. There are frequent flights from Delhi, Kolkata, Bangalore & Mumbai.
Rail: Nagpur is the nearest rail head connected by regular trains from major Indian cities.
Road: The route from Nagpur is through the national highway no. 7 to Khawasa via Kamptee, Mansar, Deolapar and Manegaon. From here, take the district road to Pench National Park.