Mandla is a tribal district situated in the east-central part of Madhaya Pradesh. The district lies almost entirely in the catchement of river Narmada & its tributaries. A district with a glorious history, Mandla comprises of numerous rivers and endowed with rich forests. The world's famous Tiger Sanctuary, Kanha National Park located in the district, is one of the hottest targets for both the domestic as well as foreign tourists.

The extreme length of the district is about 133 Kms. from north to south and extreme breadth is 182 Kms from east to west. It covers a total area of 8771 Sq.Km. and consists a total population of 779414.

There are 9 blocks 4 Tehsils and 1214 villages in the district. With the promulgation of Madhya Pradesh reorganisation of district has been bifurcated into the Mandla and Dindori districts. The Dindori, Shahpura Tahsils and Mehandwani development block formed Dindori district while rest of the area existed in Mandla District.

Mandla is inhabited by a sizeable population of various tribes. It is endowed with immense natural beauty – the forests, hills and river valleys
The world’s famous Tiger Sanctuary, Kanha National Park, is one of the hottest targets for both the domestic as well as foreign tourists in the tribal district. Sightings various wild animals in addition to tiger is a common thing in here.

A visit to Mandla provides a chance to know nature from close range. The place, embellished with dense and rich forest, is home to numerous wild creatures.The best season to visit Mandla is July to March.Much of the district is forested, and it is home to Kanha National Park, a Project Tiger sanctuary. Kanha has the largest number of tigers in India. The park has won national awards for good management and infrastructure. The park is open year round except for July and August. The district is also home to Mandla Plant Fossils National Park.

The city was a capital of the Gond dynasty who built a palace and a fort, which in the absence of proper care have gone to ruins.

Location info:

Mandla district is located in the east-central part of the Madhya Pradesh with its headquarters at Mandla town. The district is almost entirely in the catchments of river Narmada and its tributaries which surrounds it on three sides, and for 15 miles between Mandla and Ramnagar the river flows in a deep bed unbroken by rocks. The Narmada is worshipped here, and many beautiful ghats have been constructed on the banks of the river.. It is a part of Jabalpur division.


Mandla District extends over the highest plateaus of the Stapura ranging grow 500 meters to 500 meters above mean sea level. Thus in comparison with the low-lying plains of Jabalpur and Raipur on the north and south it is cool and exhilarating. Thus the climate of this district is characterized by hot summer season and general dryness except in the southwest monsoon season. The year may be divided into four seasons. The cold season from December to February is followed by the hot season from March to about the middle of June. The period from mid-June to September is the southwest monsoon season. October and November constitute the post monsoon or retreating monsoon season.There is a meteorological observatory in the district at Mandla and the records of this observatory may be taken as fairly representative of the conditions prevailing in the district in general. There is a steady increase of temperature after February. May is the hottest month with the mean daily minimum temperature at 41.30 C and the mean daily minimum at 240C.On individual days during the summer season the day temperature may go above 440C.The highest maximum temperature recorded at Mandla was 45.00C on 1954 May 22. The lowest minimum was 0.60 C

History of Mandla

Mandla was called as Mahishmati nagari before 1500A.D. Queen Rani Durgawati ruled Mandla province and fought against Britishers and moguls. The Gond-Rajput dynasty of Garha-Mandla commenced, according to an inscription in the palace of Ramnagar, in the fifth century, with the accession of Jadho Rai, a Rajput adventurer who entered the service of an old Gond king, married his daughter, and succeeded him to the throne. Alexander Cunningham placed the date two centuries later in 664 . The Garha-Mandla kingdom was a petty local chiefship until the accession of Sangram Sah, the forty-seventh king, in 1480. This prince extended his dominions over the Narmada Valley, and possibly Bhopal, Sagar, and Damoh and most of the Satpura hill country, and left fifty-two forts or districts to his son. In addition to Mandla, Jabalpur and Garha in Jabalpur District and Ramnagar in Mandla District served at times as capitals of the kingdom.
Garha Fort in Killa Ghat

The control of the Garha-Mandla kings over their extended principality was, however, short-lived, for in 1564 Asaf Khan, the Mughal viceroy, invaded their territories. The queen Durgavati, then acting as regent for her infant son, met him near the fort of Singorgarh in Damoh District; but being defeated, she retired past Garha towards Mandla, and took up a strong position in a narrow defile. Here, mounted on an elephant, she bravely headed her troops in defence of the pass, and notwithstanding that she had received an arrow-wound in her eye refused to retire. But by an extraordinary coincidence the river in the rear of her position, which had been nearly dry a few hours before the action commenced, began suddenly to rise and soon became unfordable Finding her plan of retreat thus frustrated, and seeing her troops give way, the queen snatched a dagger from her elephant-driver and plunged it into her breast. Asaf Khan acquired immense booty, including, it is said, more than a thousand elephants.

From this time the fortunes of the Mandla kingdom rapidly declined. The districts afterwards formed into the state of Bhopal were ceded to the Emperor Akbar, to obtain his recognition of the next Rajja, Chandra Sah. In the time of Chandra Sah's grandson, Prem Narayan, the Bundelas invaded Narsinghpur District and stormed the castle of Chauragarh. During the succeeding reigns family quarrels led the rival parties to solicit foreign intervention in support of their pretensions, and for this a price always had to be paid. Mandla was made capital of the kingdom in 1670. Part of Sagar District was ceded to the Mughal Emperor, the south of Sagar and Damoh districts to Chhatar Sal Raja of Panna, and Seoni District to the Gond Raja of Deogarh.

In 1742 the Peshwa invaded Mandla, and this was followed by the exaction of chauth (tribute). The Bhonsles of Nagpur annexed the territories now constituting Balaghat District and part of Bhandara District. Finally, in 1781, the last king of the Gond-Rajput line was deposed, and Mandla was annexed to the Maratha government of Sagar, then under the control of the Peshwa.

At some period of the Gond kingdom the district must have been comparatively well-populated, as numerous remains of villages could be observed in places that, by the early 20th century, were covered in forest; but one of the Sagar rulers, Vasudeo Pandit, is said to have extorted several tens of thousands of rupees from the people in 18 months by unbridled oppression, and to have left the district ruined and depopulated. In 1799 Mandla was appropriated by the Bhonsle rajas of Nagpur, in accordance with a treaty concluded some years previously with the Peshwa. The Marathas built a wall on the side of the town that was not protected by the river. During the 18 years which followed, the district was repeatedly overrun by the Pindaris, although they did not succeed in taking the town of Mandla.

In 1818, at the conclusion of the Third Anglo-Maratha War, Mandla was ceded to the British. The Maratha garrison in the fort refused to surrender, and a force under General Marshall took it by assault. Mandla and the surrounding district became part of the Saugor and Nerbudda Territories of British India. The peace of the district was not subsequently disturbed, except for a brief period during the Revolt of 1857, when the chiefs of Ramgarh, Shahpura, and Sohagpur joined the rebels, taking with them their Gond retainers. British control was restored in early 1858. The Saugor and Nerbudda Territories, including Mandla District, became part of the new Central Provinces in 1861. The town was made a municipality in 1867. The Maratha wall was removed in the early 20th century. By the first decade of the 20th century, Mandla contained an English middle school, girls' and branch schools, and a private Sanskrit school, as well as three dispensaries, including mission and police hospitals, and a veterinary dispensary. A station of the Church Missionary Society was also established there

Educational Institutions in Mandla:

Law Collegesin Mandla, Madhya Pradeshoffering Legal Education including Civil Law, Criminal Law, Business Law, Forensic Law etc. and courses such as Bachelor of Law (BL), Master of Law (ML) etc.

Government RDS (PG) College, Mandla

Postgraduate Degree Colleges in Mandla offering Postgraduate Degree courses such as MA/MSc/MCom/MBA/MCA etc. in the region. Generally, Postgraduate colleges in this region will be affiliated with the regional University.

Rani Durgawati Government Post Graduate College, Mandla

Distance Education Colleges in Mandla, Madhya Pradesh:

Dr Chintamani Shukla, Mandla

RD Government PG College, Mandla

The prominent schools in Mandla are

1) Montfort School.
2) Maharshi Vidya Mandir.
3) Bharat Jyoti Vidyalaya.
4) Jagganath Excellence School (Govt.)
5) Gyan Deep English Medium (HS) School.
6) Sarasawati Shishu Mandir
7) Kendriya Vidyalaya
8) Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya
9) Nirmala Higher Secondary School.

The prominent High education centres in Mandla are

1) Rani Durgawati Mahavidyalaya
2) Jagannath Munnalal Choudhary Mahila Mahavidyalaya
3) Polytechnic Girls College



How to reach Mandla?

Nearest Railway Station:

Jabalpur is the nearest railway station which is 169 km away. All important trains halt at Jabalpur station.

Nearest Airport:

Nearest airports are at Raipur (260 km) and Nagpur (275 km).

Road Transport:

There is a daily bus service available for Kisli and Mukki from Jabalpur and back. Taxis are available for hire from Jabalpur, Bilaspur and Raipur. It is advisable to reach Kisli before sunset as vehicles are not permitted within the park after dark.

The MPSTDC operates two buses daily, the earlier of which leaves Jabalpur at about 7 in the morning and reaches Kanha by noon.

Tourist Attraction of Mandla:

Tourists are attracted toward Kanha National Park. Decades before tourist were interested in Killa (Fort) in kille Ghat, Shahastra dhara but now due to insufficient maintenance, even localites won't travel those places. For accommodation there is couples of hotels in kanha and Hotel Tourist (M.P.T) administered by state government in Mandla. In average of 10,000 tourists visits each year, in which 400-500 are foreigners mainly from US, France and Germany.Some small waterfalls are also available in this region.

In the 1930s, Kanha area was divided into two sanctuaries, Hallon and Banjar, of 250 and 300 km² each. Kanha National Park was created on 1 June, 1955. Today it stretches over an area of 940 km² in the two districts Mandla and Balaghat. Together with a surrounding buffer zone of 1,009 km² and the neighboring 110 km² Phen Sanctuary it forms the Kanha Tiger Reserve. The park has a significant population of Royal Bengal Tiger, leopards, the sloth bear, Barasingha and Indian wild dog. The lush sal and bamboo forests, grassy meadows and ravines of Kanha provided inspiration to Rudyard Kipling for his famous novel "Jungle Book.

Jabalpur has the nearest Airport (175 km) which is connected with Delhi while Nagpur airport is the next closest (275 Km). Nagpur airport is connected to most of the big cities in India. Mandla (70 km) is well connected with Kanha. In order to visit Kanha National Park, there is a regular tourist taxi service from Jabalpur. From Nagpur, you have to go via Seoni and Nainpur and take the diversion at Bamhni. In Seoni and Nainpur, overnight stay can be made before heading to Kanha.

Mandla, Nainpur and Seoni have sports clubs, Internet cafes, guides, churches (Catholic and Protestant) and hundreds of beautiful temples around the city. There are three gates for entrance into the forest. The Kisli gate is best accessible from Jabalpur. The Kisli gate stops at village Khatia which comes inside the buffer area. The second gate is Mukki. The third and recently opened gate is Serai gate.

Hotels/Lodge/Accommodation in Mandla:

Tuli Tiger Resort Mandla:

Tuli Tiger Resort Mandla is located 255 kms. from Nagpur Airport, 250 kms from Nagpur Railway Station, and 250 kms from Nagpur Bus Stand. Tuli Tiger Resort Mandla is partially airconditioned (all rooms and tents a/c), with a total of 34 rooms. Tuli Tiger Resort Mandla has 1 restaurant serving multiple cuisines, and 1 bar.

Baghira Log Huts, Kisli Mandla:

Baghira Log Huts, Kisli Mandla is located 165kms from Jabalpur Airport, 165 kms from Jabalpur Railway Station, and 65 kms from Mandla Bus Stand. Baghira Log Huts, Kisli Mandla is partially airconditioned / heated, with a total of 16 rooms. Baghira Log Huts, Kisli Mandla has 1 restaurant serving Indian, Chinese, and Continental cuisines, and 1 bar.

MP Tourism Tourist Motel is located at Mandla, located 65 kms fro Kanha on the Jabalpur - Kanha Road (Madhya Pradesh, India).