Winter School trip to Ranthambore National Park- classes 6-9

Posted by on Jan 10, 2019 in School News | Comments Off

The School arranged an educational three-day trip to Sawai Madhopur for 56 students of classes VI – IX. The purpose of the excursion was a visit to the Ranthambore National Park. The students were accompanied by 6 teachers namely, Ms. Kajal Soni, Ms. Ekta Chitkara, Ms. Vandana Tewari, Ms. Seema Atal, Mr. Sanjeev Kumar and Mr. Pradeep Kumar.

The thrill of getting a chance to see the majestic tiger in its natural habitat was clearly evident on each face as we assembled at School on 2 January, 2019, to embark on our overnight bus journey. We reached the Om Rudra Priy Resort at 7:30 am where the children were allotted their rooms to freshen up and assemble in the dining hall for breakfast. After breakfast we proceeded to the Ranthambore Fort which was worth the effort of climbing a flight of 200 steps! It houses a Ganesh temple which is visited by pilgrims twice a month on the Chaturdashi days on the Hindu calendar.

After the long trek up to the temple and down, children enjoyed a sumptuous lunch at the hotel and then we set out again for the Ranthambore National Park in open canters. The road leading to the Park had the towering Ranthambore Fort on one side and a long range of cliffs on the other. As we entered the Park we were familiarised with the rules by forest officials, in order to avoid causing any discomfort to the animals in their natural habitat.

As often happens, this spectacular start was followed by a mute follow-through with no signs of any wild animal being spotted until late evening. It was only when we were about to exit the Reserve, that we faintly spotted two tigers resting in the tall grass and a leopard hunting down a buffalo on the far end! Leopards are as many in number as the tigers at Ranthambore but as is typical of tiger-infested areas, leopards rarely reveal themselves. Both the Chital and the Sambar were numerous and the long drawn rutting calls of chital stags reverberated through the forest, sometimes startling tourists.

The evening in the hotel was relaxing. The children were shown a power-point presentation by a forest ranger which introduced them to the history of the park and its diverse species. After the informative session the children enjoyed evening refreshments over Rajasthani folk dance, song and a bonfire.

Day 2 started with the group leaving the hotel after breakfast, to visit the Kala Gora Temple and Dastkar, a shop run by an NGO to support and promote dying Rajasthani craftsmanship. The effort has enabled several people gain financial independence and to live better and more prosperous lives. The children bought souvenirs for their families and friends and for themselves to carry back.

After lunch at the hotel, we boarded buses and started on our 5 hour journey to Bharatpur. We reached and checked into a luxurious 4 star hotel, Regenta, at 7 in the evening. Here we all were welcomed with a drink, tea and hot sizzling snacks. After freshening up, the children were excited to know that they would have a DJ to enjoy for the evening. The last evening of the trip was thus spent in great camaraderie and dancing! At long last the teachers persuaded the children to have their dinner and go to bed! A long and adventure- filled day lay ahead of them.

Day 3 started at 7 am. The children had their breakfast in the hotel at 8 am and checked out to visit the Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary. We ventured into the sanctuary on the cold winter morning in cycle rickshaws, observing the picturesque flora and fauna. We had never seen so many species of birds together at one place! We were accompanied by two guides who told us the names of the species of birds in the sanctuary and the countries from which they had possibly migrated. The painted storks from Egypt were the most common, followed by the China ducks and other Indian birds like the laughing doves, kingfishers, rose-ringed parakeets, peafowls, jungle babblers and many more. The 2 hours spent in the sanctuary didn’t seem enough to devour the captivating beauty of the exotic birds, reptiles and animals.

We then left for Fatehpur Sikri. Here we were to see the Buland Darwaza – gate to enter the Jama Masjid, the tomb of Salim Chishti, the Diwan-E-Khas and Jodha Bai’s Palace. The 5-storey Panch Mahal that overlooks the site was also a fascinating edifice.

As they say all good things must come to an end, and so did our trip. The buses reached School at about 8:15 pm after navigating the crawling traffic on the outskirts of Delhi. At School the parents were waiting anxiously for the children who had been away for the past 3 days.

Certainly the stories from the journeys will have kept them all awake for hours thereafter!

Ms. Vandana Tewari.

Comments are closed.