Kanha Tiger Reserve is spread over an area of 1,949 sq km (940 sq km of core area and 1,009 sq km of buffer zone), making it one of the best habitats for tigers in India (the current dominant male, Munna, is easily recognized by a symbol on his forehead that reads – “CAT”). The park is situated in the Central Indian Highlands, which are part of the extensive tableland that forms India’s main peninsula. The highlands once were continuous forests and accounted for a significant part of the country’s wilderness areas and wildlife habitats. Today, these forests have become fragmented and survive in parks such as Panna, Bandhavgarh, Kanha, Pench and Sanjay.The sal forests and vast meadows contain tigers (89 at last count) and leopards and support huge populations of deer and antelope, including the rare barasingha (deer). You’ll see plenty of langur monkeys, the odd gaur (Indian bison), maybe even a family or two of wild boar and the odd lonesome jackal or two. The park is also home to more than 300 bird species.Khatiya Gate in Khatiya village is easily the most popular; other gates into the park include Mukki, 45km southeast of Khatiya, and Sarahi, 60km northeast.