The Biligiriranga Swamy Temple Wildlife Sanctuary or simply BRT Wildlife Sanctuary stands at the confluence of the Western and Eastern Ghats at an altitude of 5,091 ft above the sea level. The Sanctuary is found in the southern Indian state of Karnataka. It spreads over an area of 540 sq kms between the Cauvery and Tungabhadra rivers comprising undulating hills and valleys covered with deciduous forest and sholas.
It was declared as a protected reserve under the Wildlife Protection Act, 1973. The forest is home to many wildlife and harbours close to 800 species of plants due to its suitable climatic conditions. The vegetation is a mixture of deciduous, riparian, scrub and evergreen grasslands. Maximum temperature varies between 20°C to 38°C, while the minimum temperature ranges from 9°C to 16°C depending on the altitude. The annual rainfall received is 600 m at the base and 3000 mm at higher elevations.
Main Attractions: The idyllic setting makes B R Hills Wildlife Sanctuary perfect for both resort and wildlife holiday. There are jeep and elephant safaris available for exploring the forest. The Sanctuary also offers plenty for adventure freaks in the form of angling, fishing, boat rides, bird watching, river rafting, trekking and camping.
The most common wild animals sighted are gaurs, chitals, sambhars, bears, elephants, panthers and tigers, jungle cat, sloth bears, civet, mongoose, giant squirrel, porcupine, common langur, bonnet macaque, wild pig, spotted deer and four-horned antelope. Also over 270 species of birds are found at BR Hills Wildlife Sanctuary. Chief among them are the Malabar whistling thrush, yellow throated bulbul, Paradise flycatcher, Racquet-tailed drongo and crested hawk eagle.
When To Go: The best time to visit BR Hills Wildlife sanctuary is from June to October as animals come out in the open more often during this time. Nevertheless, the Sanctuary is open throughout the year. You have to take permission to visit the Sanctaury from the Forest Department at Chamarajnagar if you are not staying at the resort.
How To Get There: The nearest railhead and airport is at Bangalore which is at a distance of 160 kms. From there once can drive down by road via Kanakapura/Halagur. Buses are available daily from Mysore (90 kms) and Bangalore.
Where To Stay: Plenty of charming accommodation facility in the form of tents, ethnic huts and jungle lodges are available. These accommodations come with attached modern bathroom facilities. If you want a luxurious accommodation then there is Maharaja's Bungalow close by.