The Dalma Wildlife Sanctuary is among the biggest reserves in East India. It is known for its large population of the mighty elephants, although numbers have been declining gravely in this decade. The sanctuary was a very popular destination in the 80’s after being established in 1975.
The various kinds of Flora and Fauna found in the sanctuary are not only indigenous but unique in many regards. When I was in Jamshedpur and someone told me about the Dalma Wildlife Sanctuary located at the foot of the Dalma Hills, I was determined to visit it. The sanctuary is located 10 km east of Jamshedpur and can be accessed via the National Highway 33.
The wildlife sanctuary in Dalma is also quite popular for its population of Barking Deer and Sloth Bear. I also wanted to see the porcupine; this specie has enthralled and fascinated me since I saw one at a very young age in my village. The Dalma wildlife sanctuary is a perfect tourist destination for adventure lovers like me. It offers extremely satisfying trekking and hiking opportunities. A small trip to the park can be taken on a jeep with a guide in a couple of hours but I chose to spend an entire day observing from the hiding points and then trekking for long distances.
The number of tourists visiting the sanctuary has reduced considerably in the past decade. This is mainly because of the increase in unrest caused by naxalite activity in Chedil and neighbouring regions. The Forest Rangers have tried to keep insurgency to the minimum but they are easily outnumbered. Although during the winters, the sanctuary remains a safe place. The threats could not discourage me as I could not miss such a golden opportunity just because of some speculations.
A forest home can be booked for just 300 rupees for a day in the Dalma Wildlife sanctuary. The entire trip including food, equipments for hiking and guide cost me just under 5000 rupees. The trip was extremely affordable and given the fun I had looking at animals in their natural habitat and coming up, close and personal with the wild, I am more than satisfied. I intend to come back to the sanctuary some day.