| The place derives its name from the winding river - Nagarhole meaning "snake river" - which flows through the park. The 640 sq km of gently undulating terrain at the foothills of the Brahmagiri hills is covered with thick tropical forest, grassy swamps and numerous rivers and streams. The park and animal life is part of the country's first "bio-sphere reserve". The Forest Department conducts tours along well-defined routes for tourists, in the early mornings and evenings. One can be sure of seeing the bison, elephant, spotted deer, sambhar, barking deer, wild boar, mongoose, peakcock, jungle fowl and many other birds and animals.
Lucky people may see a tiger or panther or even a King cobra. Both trekking and going by private vehicles is allowed, though permission has to be taken first. Huts have been built for those who wish to stay in the wilds. It has recently been renamed 'Rajiv Gandhi National Park.' Gentle slopes and shallow valleys surround it on all sides. Huge herds of Asian Elephants flock here together and it is blessed with wildlife abundance.
You find a variety of trees and shrubs often making it a sanctuary for illegal timber traders. Among reptiles, the marsh crocodile, monitor lizard, rock python and several other species can be found. Aquatic and terrestrial tortoises, frogs, toads and tree frogs and a myriad insects, including some very colourful butterflies, adorn this lovely southern jungle of India.