What’s amazing about Nepal is its geographical diversity. Here the rich tropical jungles meets the Himalayas within a small span of 205 Km. Within in these space lives people belonging to various ethnic groups, following their culture, and speaking their language. So, it is evident with such geographical diversity comes cultural diversity as well.
Normally, the best Nepal tour package includes all the destinations in geographical locations, However, in this article we are providing you information on the most famous, most visited, and the most preserved wildlife sanctuary in Nepal – Chitwan National Park.
Chitwan National Park
On the Southern part of Nepal lies the Terai plains which foster the dense tropical jungles and wildlife sanctuaries. Among them, the most visited wildlife sanctuary is Chitwan National Park.
Besides, the soaring mountain range, Nepal displays its beauty nowhere else than in the Chitwan National Park. However, it is surprising to know that the country well renowned for the eight of the 10 highest mountains peaks in the world also has a tropical climate that fosters steamy jungles and wildlife in their natural habitat. The famous attraction in Chitwan is elephant back safari, canoe ride, visit to Tharu tribal village, elephant bathing, visit of crocodile/elephant breeding center to name a few.
The easy accessibility of Chitwan National Park had made it this popular. it is easily accessible from famous tourist destinations of Kathmandu and Pokhara. From Kathmandu it is 185 Km and takes 5 hrs driving. However, if you decide to fly then it is 20 minutes flight to Bharatpur and 15 minutes drive to Chitwan National Park from Bharatpur.
History of the Park
It was not long ago Chitwan was a center for Nepalese and British nobles. The popular hunting games were of jeopardized endangered Bengal tigers, One-horned Rhinoceros occurred inside the recreation center.
Nevertheless, the occasional hunting didn’t truly endanger the jungle natural life. In fact, the locale’s status as a chasing hold presumably secured it.
Establishment of Chitwan Wildlife Sanctuary
Until 1950, Chitwan inhabitants were only the Tharu community scattered around the park. As the settlement increased much of the jungles were deforested into farmland. By 1973, the Rhino population in Chitwan was estimated to be only 100 and there were only 20 elusive Bengal Tigers left. Finally, this disastrous slide was halted when the Chitwan wildlife sanctuary was established in 1964. Around, 22,000 people were forcibly removed from the boundary of the national park. The national park was proclaimed in 1973 and since that time the animal population has rebounded.
A census conducted in 2000 found the Rhino population jump in 544 and an estimate of 50 tigers, quite apart from 50 other species of mammals and 450 different species of birds.
Problem Created When Man and Nature Collides
As with many national parks, the park authorities trend a delicate line between keeping the local people content and protecting the animals inside the park. Moreover, very often heavily armed army presence, involving around 1000 soldiers, has kept poaching and woodcutting to the minimum. This no doubt contributes to the local resentment, and a significant problem is that the park ties up potential farming land and timber resources which are very valuable.
As well, many times the animals do not respect the park boundaries ” therefore they are called animals“. Rhino wanders out in November to wreak havoc on rice crops, and again in February and March, they attack rice and lentils. Furthermore, deer, monkeys, wild pigs also cause a great deal of damage. You will see little machans (lookout towers) in many fields outside the park and are used by watchers who spend their night in the field waiting to scare off encroaching animals. Tigers, and crocodile attacks are rare, but there have been fatalities.
Chitwan As One Of The Best Attraction In Nepal Tour Package
Today the park offers one of the finest wildlife experiences in Asia.
One has to be extremely lucky to see the elusive Bengal tiger, however, visitors will spot One-horned Rhino making out of the bushes like an armored tank. Furthermore, the elephant back safari is the main attraction in Chitwan National Park. This is one of the unforgettable experiences and the views of Rhinos and various species of deer are frequent.
Numerous travel agency in Nepal and west offer package tours to the park. An ideal stay in Chitwan is 2 nights/3 days. Hence, most of the Nepal tour package includes 2 nights/3 days in Chitwan National park and it is totally worth it.
Best Time to Visit
The best time to visit the park is from October to March when the daily temperature is about 25 degree Celsius. Likewise, May to August being the worst time as it is a monsoon season and many park lodges are closed during the monsoon months.
What to Wear?
You’ll have to wear a dull or a natural colored dress. The point of the game is to blend you into your surroundings, however much as could be expected so as to abstain from focusing on yourself. In the winter months (November to February) the cold fog lingers palpably long into the day. A comfortable coat and a decent arrangement of thermals is suggested, particularly for the evening time.
Furthermore, during and after rainstorms (July to September), make certain to wear long free pants. This is the ideal season leeches. In the event that you do get ‘siphoned’ you’ll feel a slight scratch on your skin and that is it, a great many people don’t see them! Bloodsuckers will take their fill and evacuate themselves time permitting. However, if you are squeamish ask your guide to remove it for you. They all have ninja-like skills when it comes to removing leeches!
Highlights in Chitwan National Park
Elephant Back Safari
This is the foremost attraction inside the park. Further, the greatest thrill is commencing an elephant back safari search of carious wildlife inside the park. Hence, elephant back Safari is not to miss activity during your Nepal tour package.
Further, visitors are allowed to enter inside the park on foot, however, to get the most out of this walk, and for the reason of safety, the visitors are sent accompanied by the local naturalist.
Walks, which are often nothing more than a pleasant stroll through the jungle, can be exhilarating, but of a Rhino is encountered it can be potentially dangerous. However, the naturalist is experts on tracking of the Rhinos and maintaining the distance as these Rhinos are very territorial.
Furthermore, walking is the ideal way to see the different species of bird’s inside the park, and butterflies, and to also see the flora up close.
A canoe trip along the Narayani or Rapti river is a very rejuvenating experience. Further, it is a restful way of seeing the wildlife, particularly the water birds, muggers, and gharial crocodiles.
Visitors if lucky can catch a glimpse of a freshwater gigantic dolphin, although they are believed to have vanished from the polluted rivers.
Tharu Village Visit:
The native inhabitants are Tharu who are scattered around the boundaries of the National Park. Staying in Chitwan will provide an opportunity to explore these Tharu villages, either on foot or in an oxcart.
Lodges in Chitwan organize Tharu cultural dances every evening, which is equally interesting to watch.