Tried of being cooped in at home? Why not spend a day out with fam or bae at Bannerghatta Biological Park. Good news is a a certificate of Covid compliance has been issued by a team from the Directorate of Health and Family Welfare Services after a thorough evaluation and the zoo is now open to visits. Maximum number of visitors who could be allowed in a day is 4,400. The zoo has also enabled contactless online ticketing system while only one physical ticketing counter is functional, ensuring physical distancing. All individuals entering the park are being screened at the entry point for temperature using handheld thermal scanner. Hand sanitisers and hand washing facility is in place at the entrance and appropriate places.
It may be a tiny zoo (as compared to even the one in Mysore) but Bannerghatta Biological Park is definitely worth a trip. Pile into your car for a drive-through or take a comfortable A/C bus ride from Majestic that drops you right at the entrance. Start off with the Grand Safari. The safari rides begin at around 10 AM and there’s always a long line so get here early. The most pocket-friendly option is to take the buses. But there are jeeps and cars (with and without A/C). Do note that to meet the Covid guidelines safari vehicles are running only at 50 per cent capacity to maintain physical distancing. No private vehicles are not allowed on the safaris. The drive through the open enclosures (this is not an actual safari) takes around 40 minutes. Spot deer, Nilgai, and sambars along with elephants, lions, and tigers.
The zoo is roughly divided into small hubs where similar species are housed. Check out tigers, emus, Rheas, deer, elephants, and a lone leopard along with tortoises and turtles of different kinds and reptiles too. You’ll also see wild dogs, foxes, and jackals before you move onto different species of monkeys. Crocs and gharials make their presence felt too. Bannerghatta is also home to some exquisite birds such as pigeons, hornbills, and parakeets in breathtaking colours. At the zoo, you can sign up for boating for a small fee. If you are a nature enthusiast, enjoy the hard-to-spot butterflies and moths at the Butterfly Sanctuary.
If you don’t want your adventure to end, just stay back in log huts, cottages, or Swiss tents courtesy Jungle Lodges and Resorts. You can lounge about in hammocks, go out for nature walks and cosy up by a blazing campfire under a starry sky. You can read all about it here. The zoo has also initiated a campaign by the tagline 'nanna park namma karthavya' (our park our responsibility) to make sure that everybody wears a face mask, maintains physical distancing and follows proper hand hygiene and cough etiquette.