The Trailblazing Odyssey of Pune’s Tehzoon Karmalawala: One Man’s 63,000-Kilometer Expedition into India’s Wild Heart

Valley of Flowers NP Tehzoon Karmalawala
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Pune, 27th June 2023: In the heart of Maharashtra resides Tehzoon Karmalawala, a valiant voyager who has etched his name in the chronicles of Indian exploration. With an indomitable spirit and an insatiable love for our nation’s natural heritage, Tehzoon has accomplished an unprecedented feat, having traversed every pristine corner of India’s national parks, tiger reserves, elephant reserves, biosphere reserves, and world heritage sites. This extraordinary endeavor marks a milestone in our nation’s history.

Graced with recognition by the esteemed India Book of Records and World Records of India, Tehzoon’s remarkable achievement now resonates as the Longest Continuous Exploratory Expedition, weaving his journey into the fabric of discovery.

Embarking on this monumental odyssey from the vibrant city of Pune on the 19th of October, 2021, Tehzoon’s path meandered through an astounding distance of 63,000 kilometers, where he fearlessly tread upon the terrain on foot for 2100 kilometers, accompanied by his trusted Mahindra Thar 4×4. Over the course of one year, six months, and eleven days, Tehzoon’s quest led him to 104 national parks, 54 tiger reserves, 32 elephant reserves, 17 biosphere reserves, and 40 world heritage sites, immersing himself in the breathtaking biodiversity and awe-inspiring wonders of India.

Tehzoon’s affair with India’s mesmerizing wildlife and ecosystems was ignited during a transformative encounter with a kaleidoscope of bird species in Kerala back in 2014. “From that moment, my heart yearned for the exploration of our nation’s biodiversity. I embarked on numerous expeditions during my respite from daily life, seeking solace amidst the wilderness and fostering a profound connection with India’s untamed beauty,” shared Tehzoon, his eyes gleaming with a deep reverence.

It was during the introspective period of the 2020 lockdown that Tehzoon found his soul’s sanctuary within the embrace of nature. Fueled by this revelation, he meticulously charted his course, unfolding an odyssey that would redefine the meaning of exploration and carry him across the vast tapestry of the nation.

Venturing through the ever-changing landscapes that define India, Tehzoon traversed the arid deserts and verdant rainforests, scaled lofty Himalayan peaks and immersed himself in the ecologically diverse embrace of the Western and Eastern Ghats. He journeyed across expansive central plateaus and found solace in the captivating allure of the Andaman Islands. In each step, he was intimately acquainted with the dynamic climates and enchanting weather patterns that weave the tapestry of India, infusing his expedition with deeper layers of wonder.

Beyond the majestic landscapes, Tehzoon immersed himself in the vibrant cultural mosaic of India, embracing the traditions and customs of the communities he encountered. This harmonious exploration allowed him to gain profound insights into the rich tapestry of our nation’s heritage, which he now intends to share with the world through an upcoming video web series and a captivating photobook chronicling his transcendent odyssey. A tantalizing glimpse of his remarkable journey awaits on his eponymous YouTube channel.

While the path of discovery bore its fair share of challenges, Tehzoon’s unwavering resolve propelled him forward. “In the face of permitting and logistical hurdles, I overcame myriad obstacles that stood in my way. Only two national parks, Campbell Bay National Park and Galathea National Park on Great Nicobar Island eluded my grasp due to travel restrictions imposed on non-islanders. Nonetheless, my spirit of discovery remained undeterred, and the expedition continued unabated”, he recalled.

Behold, for within the depths of Tehzoon’s being resides an intrepid spirit that knows no boundaries. Not content with mere existence, he soars above the ordinary, transcending the limitations of mundane existence. His ardor for exploration and discovery intertwines harmoniously with his noble role as an ardent disciple of the Anandvan Foundation, a virtuous collective driven by the aspirations of a greener, more vibrant cityscape in Pune.

In the sacred realm of this foundation, Tehzoon assumes a mantle of reverence, where he ardently endeavors to reclaim and breathe life anew into urban spaces, particularly the ethereal realms of urban forests. These verdant havens, once forsaken and forgotten, are now meticulously nurtured by his benevolent touch, metamorphosing into sanctuaries of well-being, exuding resplendent vitality for the benefit of society.

Indeed, the triumphs of Tehzoon extend far beyond the realm of personal glory; they transcend the individual and resonate with the hearts of all those who yearn to embark upon their own quests, to peel back the veil shrouding our planet’s enigmatic wonders. His courageous expedition stands as an illustrious testament, illuminating the indomitable spirit inherent within the human essence and revealing the infinite possibilities that await the intrepid soul who dares to wander.