Surya is a qualified engineer from the southern Indian city of Chennai, who made the life-changing decision to follow his passion for the wild. This new journey commenced in the forests of the Satpura National Park at Forsyth Lodge, where he advanced to become a full time naturalist. Fascinated by diverse life forms, particularly the lesser fauna of the region and their microhabitats, his unquenchable enthusiasm led to pioneering central India’s first walking safari, canoeing, wilderness camping and night drives at the park.
After five years at Satpura he moved to the Kanha Tiger Reserve, where his love for wildlife, and eagerness to learn, led him to exploring India’s special and rare mammals, birds, reptiles and butterflies. Be it Satpura or Kanha, the thing Surya enjoys the most is the idea of guiding and explaining the little secrets of the jungle to guests. The need to guide people encouraged him to write a book, and he successfully authored ‘Photo Field Guide to Central India’ which covers 850 species of the region, a first-of-its-kind field guide in India.
Never one to rest, he jumps on every opportunity, and during the monsoon period he leads his own group tours to Africa. Irrespective of the region or faunal diversity, Surya’s zeal never fails to captivate guests. Surya believes that the key to sustainable ecotourism is to ensure that the locals are firmly placed at the helm.
He is currently working on setting up wildlife lodges in Ladakh in the Trans-Himalayas with snow leopard and other lesser fauna present there as the focus. This is going to be in collaboration with the houses and villages in the valley, making sure to include the local community. He believes that this joining of knowledge and resources can help immensely with conservation issues faced in the country. Surya’s curiosity and dynamism is sure to leave his guests utterly spellbound.