Welcome to Sunderbans Tiger Reserve
Home to around 100 Royal Bengal tigers, the 2585-sq-km Sunderbans Tiger Reserve is India's share of the world’s largest mangrove forest – a network of channels and semi-submerged mangroves straddling the India–Bangladesh border at the mouth of the Ganges Delta (Bangladesh has the larger share). Parts of this strange, even unearthly, land- and water-scape in both countries are Unesco World Heritage Sites. Tigers lurk in the impenetrable depths of the mangrove forests, and also swim the delta’s innumerable channels. Although they do sometimes attack villagers and prey on livestock, tigers are typically shy and sightings are rare. Nevertheless, cruising the waterways of the Sunderbans (also spelt Sundarbans) between the mangrove forests and spotting wildlife, whether it be Gangetic dolphins, water monitors, 5m-long saltwater crocodiles or luminescent kingfishers, is a world away from Kolkata’s chaos.