Wildlife Safari National parks and wildlife reserve cover more than 10% of Nepal’s total land area. Over the 30 species of large wild animals and 180 species of mammals make their home here. The Kingdom is also home to more than 800 species of birds. The Royal Chitwan National Park is one of the richest wildlife habitats of Asia. Here, at Chitwan you will discover Of pre-historic Rhino and lumbering Elephant, Crocodile, Pythons, Deer, brilliantly colored birds and yes the the Bengal Tiger but rare to see. Chitwan National Park in southern Nepal is one of the best planned and most intelligently developed tourist areas in Nepal. Not only does it offer a wide variety of resorts and lodges, it is also easy to reach – by road or by air.
The greatest thrill while at Chitwan is the traditional elephant ride. Taking an elephant ride to the jungle is an experience not to be missed. The lodges inside the park have their own elephants. Three or sometimes four people can ride atop an elephant. Elephant safaris usually start in the early morning or late afternoon .There are also jeep tours available inside the park. The best months for this are from mid-February when the elephant grass has been cut, allowing unobstructed views. It is also possible to take a walk inside the park, provided you are accompanied by at least two guides. Canoeing along the Rapti or Narayani rivers is the most restful way of watching the wildlife especially the acquatic birds and crocodiles. Several lodges arrange visits to nearby Tharu villages. Tharus, the original inhabitants of Chitwan, have their own culture, language and customs which are quite different from that of the Nepalese hill people. A visit to the elephant breeding camp and the gharial breeding centre can also prove to be informative. The best time to visit the park from October to February. Many of the park lodges are closed between May to August, the rainy season.
Bardia National Park
Royal Bardia National park encompasses an area of 968 sq. km. in the mid-far Western region thickly forested by sal trees (Shorea robusta). An area of 327 sq. km belonging to the park was declared a buffer zone in 1997. The park accommodates blue bulls, deer, wild boars the langoor and rhesus monkeys, civets, hyenas, rhesus macaque, jackal wild dogs, sloth bears, otters, tiger, rhinoceros, mongoose wild elephant, black buck, gharial and marsh mugger crocodiles, gangetic dolphin and many other rare and endangered species. Ardent bird watchers and naturalists find this park a paradise for sightseeing exotic bird species like Bengal florican, silver-eared mesia, lesser florican, saurus crane etc. On wildlife safari, you can witness awesome view of six different species of deer namely Chital or spotted Deer, Hog Deer, Sambhar deer, Swamp Deer, Barasingha deer and Barking Deer cheerfully hopping around the high grasslands.
At Chitwan and Bardia, you may encounter rare and endangered animals such as the one-horned rhinoceros and Royal Bengal tiger. Other species that can be found in the parks are wild elephants, sloth bears, several species of deer, leopards and langur and rhesus monkeys. Gharial and marsh mugger crocodiles and the freshwater Gangetic dolphins also inhabit the rivers. Koshi Tappu, in particular, is a bird watchers paradise, where hundreds of different species of water birds have been recorded. The reserve provides an important habitat for a variety of wildlife but, in particular, water birds, including several migratory species such as the sarus crane from Siberia. In all, a total of 280 different species of birds have been recorded and these include many varieties of ducks, ibis, storks, egrets and herons, as well as the endangered swamp partridges and Bengal floricans.