EDEN OF THE ARAVALLIS
National Geographic Traveller India|March - April 2021
THE ANCIENT FORESTS OF THE OVERLOOKED MOUNT ABU WILDLIFE SANCTUARY, TUCKED AWAY IN THE SOUTHERN ARAVALLIS, HOLD MUCH WONDER
SAHIL ZUTSHI

A hare scampers as footsteps approach. The path is flanked by grass on which I spot a blue pansy butterfly. Dry eucalyptus and jamun leaves crackle beneath my dew-drenched wellies. I see some dazzled red spurfowls and quails scuttling to take flight. Home to rare, endemic wildlife, Mount Abu Wildlife Sanctuary is a delight for naturalists. The reserve, also identified as an Important Bird and Biodiversity Area (IBA), reveals many mysteries if you know where to look.

Away from the town’s famous Nakki Lake and other tourist attractions, this hill-station, often called an ‘oasis in the desert,’ is home to threatened and elusive species including the leopard, sloth bear, sambar, pangolin, wolf, jackal and hyena. Hidden trails are dotted with spots overlooking panoramic vistas of the southern Aravalli mountain ranges.

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