Chitwan National Park
Situated in south central Nepal, Chitwan National Park brings to mind rhinos and tigers. The park was named a rhinoceros sanctuary in 1963 and UNESCO ultimately declared Chitwan a World Heritage Site in 1984. So, whether you embark on a Himalayan trek or not, a safari in Chitwan is high on the bucket lists of the world.
Endangered fauna resident in the park are Greater One-horned Rhinoceros, Gaur (wild ox) and of course the infamous Bengal Tiger. Other captivating wildlife are Wild Asian Elephants, Four- horned Antelope, Pangolin, Golden Monitor Lizard, Python, Bengal Florican and Giant Hornbill, to name a few. Chitwan houses more than 50 mammal species, over 525 birds, and 55 amphibians and reptiles. During the winter months (Northern Hemisphere), migratory birds join the residential birds and create spectacular bird watching opportunities.
The Chitwan valley consists of both tropical and subtropical forests. Sal forests cover the majority of the park. The leaves are used locally for plates in festivals and religious offerings. 50 different types of grasses, cover almost all of the remainder. Elephant grass (Saccharum), is known to grow up to 8m in height.
The park consists of a diversity of ecosystems. There is also a range of climatic seasons. The months of October through February offer the most comfortable and enjoyable climate with average temperatures of 25oC. In late January, local villagers are allowed to cut thatch grasses to meet their needs, which provides a better viewing of wildlife. From March to June temperatures can reach as high as 43oC. During the monsoon season, June through September, causes rivers to become flooded and roads become impassible.
Public buses, tourist coaches, and airlines service link Chitwan.
For Nepal adventures that include Chitwan National Park, below are a few of the many on offer.
Delhi to Kathmandu Adventure – 15 days, for those 18-to-Thirtysomethings, from $1599 CAD ($1176 US approximately). Explore the vibrant streets of urban India, sail along the Ganges, get a glimpse of traditional life in small villages, marvel at Nepal’s mountain views, experience a homestay in rural Nepal, Opt to take a jeep safari through the diverse ecosystem of Chitwan National Park for a chance to witness rhinos, crocodiles, monkeys, and maybe even the elusive bengal tiger.
Nepal Adventure – 10 days, from $1649 CAD ($1213 US approximately). From the colours and magic of Kathmandu’s markets to the serenity of Himalayan trails, this 10-day adventure offers an intriguing blend of well-paced excursions. The rugged foothills of the Annapurna Range will reward those willing to break a sweat with stunning views of mountain vistas. Experience Nepal from a different perspective as you explore Chitwan National Park on a 4×4 safari.
Numerous other tours are available, including private customized tours. For more adventures in Nepal or elsewhere,