The Wild West

The Wild West

Explore diverse wildlife and birds in this sweeping tour of the arid lands of Gujarat and Rajasthan. Life here may be harsh, but nature thrives amidst spectacular landscapes.

From the savannahs, to arid scrubland, coast, saltmarshes, deserts and the Aravalli hills, we travel in search of some of the most enigmatic and endangered Indian wildlife.

Visiting the desert cities of Jaisalmer and Jodhpur, marvel at two of the most impossibly romantic and majestic forts in India.

This is a fascinating tour for anyone keen to see Indian wildlife and birds beyond India’s popular Tiger reserves, and see a whole different set of species like the Asiatic Lion, Leopard, Will Ass, Desert Fox, Jungle Cat, Indian wolf and Striped Hyena.

Bird lovers will seek the Great Indian Bustard, among several other rare species.

18 DAYS
FROM £3445
Idea
Themes:
Activity Levels
Moderate
WHAT'S INCLUDED
  • Activities and excursions as specified
  • Entrance fees/tickets for the above
  • In-destination transfers & transport
  • Accommodation & Meals as specified
  • English speaking guides
  • 24/7 support while you travel

Explore this itinerary

Day 1: Arrival in Ahmedabad

Arrive at  Ahmedabad airport and check into your hotel.

Rest of the day is at leisure.

Dinner
Day 2: Blackbuck National Park

Depart by road for Velavadar (140 km / 3 hrs approx.), the gateway to the Blackbuck National Park. Check into your lodge.

In the afternoon, visit Blackbuck National Park for an exclusive safari with your expert local guide. This is an excellent site  for the elegant Black Buck antelopes. We will have good opportunities to photograph Black Bucks sparring.

Other mammals which we may encounter are jungle cat, jackal, and Indian fox, Indian wolf and striped hyena. One very interesting aspect of the sanctuary is the roosting site of harriers; up to 2000 harriers have been recorded here together at dusk.

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 3: Blackbuck National Park

Today, enjoy an exclusive morning safari in the Blackbuck National Park with your expert local guide

Later depart by road for Sasan Gir (220 kms / 5 hrs drive approx). Arrive Sasan Gir in the evening and check into your lodge.

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 4: Gir National Park

Today we explore Gir National Park, on morning and afternoon exclusive safaris with an expert local guide to maximize our chances of wildlife viewing and birding.

Best known for the last remaining population of Asiatic Lions, Gir is also one of the finest reserves to see Leopards. Some of the birds found here include the Indian Jungle Nightjar, Mottled Wood Owl, Rock Bush Quail, White-bellied Minivet, Painted Sandgrouse, Black Ibis, Rufous-fronted Prinia & Crested Hawk Eagle. Overnight at Gir Birding Lodge.

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 5: Great Rann of Kutch
After breakfast, a long drive to Great Rann of Kutch with some birding opportunities en-route (430 kms / 9 hrs drive approx). Arrive Nakhatrana in the evening and check in to the lodge.
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 6 & 7: Great Rann of Kutch

Two full days birding in Bhuj with your expert bird guide.

The area around Bhuj offers very good birding, both in the desert landscapes and along its sea coastline. The Grey Hypocolius, the sole member of its family, over winters can be seen here. The White-naped Tit, Indian-endemic Marshall’s Iora, Sykes’s Lark, Indian Eagle-Owl, the Painted Sandgrouse and White-bellied Minivet are some of the others seen in this region.

Also on the visit to the sea shore should see the Lesser Sand Plovers, the Crab-Plover, the Bar-tailed Godwit, Little Tern and Heuglin’s Gull.

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 8: Little Rann of Kutch

Early morning with packed breakfast drive to the Little Rann of Kutch – (325 kms /7 hrs drive approx.), with stops for birding en-route.

Arrive Little Rann of Kutch and check in to the lodge. Evening relax or enjoy birding (walking) around the lodge or search for nocturnal birds and animals.

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 9: Little Rann of Kutch

A full day to explore the Little Rann Wildlife Sanctuary.  Morning and evening safaris by exclusive jeep.

Besides the Wild Ass, some of the other mammals we hope to see are the Desert Fox & Indian Wolf. The star birds here are the wintering Mcqueen’s Bustard, Sykes Nightjar, Greater Hoopoe Lark, Indian Courser, White tailed & Sociable Plovers, Great White & Dalmatian Pelicans, Demoiselle Cranes and raptors like the Pallid & Montaqu’s Harrier, Peregrine Falcon, Imperial, Tawny & Greater Spotted Eagles.

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 10: Little Rann of Kutch & Mount Abu

After another morning safari at the Little Rann Wildlife Sanctuary we depart for Mount Abu (125 kms / 3 hrs). Arrive Mount Abu and check in to the hotel.

Spending the afternoon around the open scrub and fields on the top of Mount Abu will hopefully bring us into contact with another rare Indian subcontinent endemic – Green Avadavat.

Mount Abu is one of the few known localities for the species and we have an excellent chance of finding a small flock feeding quietly at the base of nearby bushes. White-capped and Crested Buntings are also possible here and any time spent in the forest lower down could include Indian Scimitar Babbler.

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 11: Mount Abu & Jawai Leopard Reserve

Morning birding at Mount Abu for species that we may have previously missed out on.

Depart for Jawai Leopard Reserve (100 kms/2 hrs drive approx), which lies within the Aravalli range.

The Aravalli range is home to bird species like Jungle Bush Quail, Painted Francolin, Grey Junglefowl, Red Spurfowl, Alexandrine and Plum-headed Parakeets, White-naped Woodpecker, White-spotted Fantail, Tawny-bellied Babbler, Jungle Prinia, Sulphur-bellied Warbler, Indian Yellow Tit and Crested.

Arrive Jawai area and check in at your Camp.

In the evening, enjoy a jeep safari to Jawai Leopard Reserve searching for Leopards and birding.

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 12: Jawai

A morning jeep safari and birding in the  Jawai Leopard Reserve with your accompanying guide.

The safaris here offer a great chance of seeing Leopard, Striped Hyena, Desert & Jungle Cat, critically endangered Indian Vulture, Laggar and Red-necked Falcon, Rock Bush Quail, Sirkeer Malkoha and Painted Sandgrouse.

During the afternoon, you’ll visit a local tribal village around Jawai (by open jeep), and get a glimpse of rural life in this extremely harsh environment.

Cap your day with a unique night jeep safari to the hills of Jawai in search of nocturnal animals & birds.

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 13: Chandelaogarh

After an early breakfast drive to Chandelaogarh (200 kms / 5 hours). Arrive Chandelaogarh and check in to your hotel.

Evening birding around Chandelao Village around the lakes and in the agricultural fields.

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 14: Desert National Park
Today we will make our way to Sam Village (Near Jaisalmer – 360 kms / 7 hrs). Arrive Sam, and check in at your tented Camp.
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 15: Desert National Park

We have a full day to explore Desert National Park by private vehicle & camel cart.

The principal target is India’s most famous, but unfortunately now in rapid decline – Great Indian Bustard. However, the area is also full of birds including another declining, rare species – Stoliczka’s Bushchat, which we hope to find whilst searching for the bustard. A whole range of semi-desert species are also possible here – Cream-coloured Courser, Black-bellied, Chestnut-bellied and Painted Sandgrouse, ‘Desert’ Lesser Whitethroat, Eastern Orphean Warbler, Asian Desert Warbler, ‘Punjab’ Raven, Macqueen’s Bustard, Desert Lark, Variable Wheatear, and Lagger Falcon.

Three critically endangered vultures are also possible – Indian, White-rumped and Red-headed, along with the more widespread Eurasian Griffin and Egyptian Vulture.

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 16: Desert National Park & Jaisalmer

Morning birding at Desert National Park with your bird guide.

Afternoon drive to Jaisalmer for a short guided tour of Jaisalmer Fort and the Fort’s Havelis and monuments.

Check in at your hotel in Jaisalmer City.

Breakfast
Day 17: Jodhpur
After an early breakfast drive to Jodhpur (270 kms / 5-6 hours). Arrive in Jodhpur and enjoy guided tour of Mehrangarh Fort & Jaswant Thada.
Breakfast
Day 18: Departure
Depending on flight timings, you’ll transfer to Jodhpur airport and catch your domestic flight to Delhi/Mumbai/Ahmedabad, and connect with your international return flight.
Breakfast, Dinner
Day 1: Arrival in Ahmedabad

Arrive at  Ahmedabad airport and check into your hotel.

Rest of the day is at leisure.

Dinner
Day 2: Blackbuck National Park

Depart by road for Velavadar (140 km / 3 hrs approx.), the gateway to the Blackbuck National Park. Check into your lodge.

In the afternoon, visit Blackbuck National Park for an exclusive safari with your expert local guide. This is an excellent site  for the elegant Black Buck antelopes. We will have good opportunities to photograph Black Bucks sparring.

Other mammals which we may encounter are jungle cat, jackal, and Indian fox, Indian wolf and striped hyena. One very interesting aspect of the sanctuary is the roosting site of harriers; up to 2000 harriers have been recorded here together at dusk.

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 3: Blackbuck National Park

Today, enjoy an exclusive morning safari in the Blackbuck National Park with your expert local guide

Later depart by road for Sasan Gir (220 kms / 5 hrs drive approx). Arrive Sasan Gir in the evening and check into your lodge.

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 4: Gir National Park

Today we explore Gir National Park, on morning and afternoon exclusive safaris with an expert local guide to maximize our chances of wildlife viewing and birding.

Best known for the last remaining population of Asiatic Lions, Gir is also one of the finest reserves to see Leopards. Some of the birds found here include the Indian Jungle Nightjar, Mottled Wood Owl, Rock Bush Quail, White-bellied Minivet, Painted Sandgrouse, Black Ibis, Rufous-fronted Prinia & Crested Hawk Eagle. Overnight at Gir Birding Lodge.

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 5: Great Rann of Kutch
After breakfast, a long drive to Great Rann of Kutch with some birding opportunities en-route (430 kms / 9 hrs drive approx). Arrive Nakhatrana in the evening and check in to the lodge.
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 6 & 7: Great Rann of Kutch

Two full days birding in Bhuj with your expert bird guide.

The area around Bhuj offers very good birding, both in the desert landscapes and along its sea coastline. The Grey Hypocolius, the sole member of its family, over winters can be seen here. The White-naped Tit, Indian-endemic Marshall’s Iora, Sykes’s Lark, Indian Eagle-Owl, the Painted Sandgrouse and White-bellied Minivet are some of the others seen in this region.

Also on the visit to the sea shore should see the Lesser Sand Plovers, the Crab-Plover, the Bar-tailed Godwit, Little Tern and Heuglin’s Gull.

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 8: Little Rann of Kutch

Early morning with packed breakfast drive to the Little Rann of Kutch – (325 kms /7 hrs drive approx.), with stops for birding en-route.

Arrive Little Rann of Kutch and check in to the lodge. Evening relax or enjoy birding (walking) around the lodge or search for nocturnal birds and animals.

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 9: Little Rann of Kutch

A full day to explore the Little Rann Wildlife Sanctuary.  Morning and evening safaris by exclusive jeep.

Besides the Wild Ass, some of the other mammals we hope to see are the Desert Fox & Indian Wolf. The star birds here are the wintering Mcqueen’s Bustard, Sykes Nightjar, Greater Hoopoe Lark, Indian Courser, White tailed & Sociable Plovers, Great White & Dalmatian Pelicans, Demoiselle Cranes and raptors like the Pallid & Montaqu’s Harrier, Peregrine Falcon, Imperial, Tawny & Greater Spotted Eagles.

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 10: Little Rann of Kutch & Mount Abu

After another morning safari at the Little Rann Wildlife Sanctuary we depart for Mount Abu (125 kms / 3 hrs). Arrive Mount Abu and check in to the hotel.

Spending the afternoon around the open scrub and fields on the top of Mount Abu will hopefully bring us into contact with another rare Indian subcontinent endemic – Green Avadavat.

Mount Abu is one of the few known localities for the species and we have an excellent chance of finding a small flock feeding quietly at the base of nearby bushes. White-capped and Crested Buntings are also possible here and any time spent in the forest lower down could include Indian Scimitar Babbler.

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 11: Mount Abu & Jawai Leopard Reserve

Morning birding at Mount Abu for species that we may have previously missed out on.

Depart for Jawai Leopard Reserve (100 kms/2 hrs drive approx), which lies within the Aravalli range.

The Aravalli range is home to bird species like Jungle Bush Quail, Painted Francolin, Grey Junglefowl, Red Spurfowl, Alexandrine and Plum-headed Parakeets, White-naped Woodpecker, White-spotted Fantail, Tawny-bellied Babbler, Jungle Prinia, Sulphur-bellied Warbler, Indian Yellow Tit and Crested.

Arrive Jawai area and check in at your Camp.

In the evening, enjoy a jeep safari to Jawai Leopard Reserve searching for Leopards and birding.

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 12: Jawai

A morning jeep safari and birding in the  Jawai Leopard Reserve with your accompanying guide.

The safaris here offer a great chance of seeing Leopard, Striped Hyena, Desert & Jungle Cat, critically endangered Indian Vulture, Laggar and Red-necked Falcon, Rock Bush Quail, Sirkeer Malkoha and Painted Sandgrouse.

During the afternoon, you’ll visit a local tribal village around Jawai (by open jeep), and get a glimpse of rural life in this extremely harsh environment.

Cap your day with a unique night jeep safari to the hills of Jawai in search of nocturnal animals & birds.

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 13: Chandelaogarh

After an early breakfast drive to Chandelaogarh (200 kms / 5 hours). Arrive Chandelaogarh and check in to your hotel.

Evening birding around Chandelao Village around the lakes and in the agricultural fields.

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 14: Desert National Park
Today we will make our way to Sam Village (Near Jaisalmer – 360 kms / 7 hrs). Arrive Sam, and check in at your tented Camp.
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 15: Desert National Park

We have a full day to explore Desert National Park by private vehicle & camel cart.

The principal target is India’s most famous, but unfortunately now in rapid decline – Great Indian Bustard. However, the area is also full of birds including another declining, rare species – Stoliczka’s Bushchat, which we hope to find whilst searching for the bustard. A whole range of semi-desert species are also possible here – Cream-coloured Courser, Black-bellied, Chestnut-bellied and Painted Sandgrouse, ‘Desert’ Lesser Whitethroat, Eastern Orphean Warbler, Asian Desert Warbler, ‘Punjab’ Raven, Macqueen’s Bustard, Desert Lark, Variable Wheatear, and Lagger Falcon.

Three critically endangered vultures are also possible – Indian, White-rumped and Red-headed, along with the more widespread Eurasian Griffin and Egyptian Vulture.

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 16: Desert National Park & Jaisalmer

Morning birding at Desert National Park with your bird guide.

Afternoon drive to Jaisalmer for a short guided tour of Jaisalmer Fort and the Fort’s Havelis and monuments.

Check in at your hotel in Jaisalmer City.

Breakfast
Day 17: Jodhpur
After an early breakfast drive to Jodhpur (270 kms / 5-6 hours). Arrive in Jodhpur and enjoy guided tour of Mehrangarh Fort & Jaswant Thada.
Breakfast
Day 18: Departure
Depending on flight timings, you’ll transfer to Jodhpur airport and catch your domestic flight to Delhi/Mumbai/Ahmedabad, and connect with your international return flight.
Breakfast, Dinner

Interested in this itinerary? It's great as is, but we'll be happy to tailor it for you.

Our prices do not include international flights unless explicitly stated.

The price shown is per person, based on two people travelling and sharing a room, outside peak periods. Prices may vary depending on the time of travel, and single supplements may apply.

Our Accommodation Ratings

Opulent: Exceptional, unashamedly the best of sheer luxury. (£££££)

Luxury: Outstanding levels of 5* comfort, hospitality and facilities. (££££)

Premium: Excellent levels of comfort and hospitality and a wide range of facilities. (£££)

Mid-Range: Good levels of comfort and hospitality, with a reasonable range of facilities. (££)

Simple: Clean and simple, no frills. Often in areas of natural beauty or near wildlife reserves. (£)