Chitwan National Park is only a five hour drive or a short flight from Kathmandu or Pokhara. Before you know it you can be in a small hand-carved wooden canoe rowing down the Rapti River watching crocodiles or Gharials bask in the sun on the banks as the water birds flit here and there. Chitwan National Park in the south of Nepal, is a belt of low land covered with dense subtropical jungles where wild animals live in their natural habitat. The name Chitwan is derived from the Tharu word “Chit” meaning dense and “Ban” meaning “forest”.
This huge and beautiful nature reserve protects 932 sq km of sal forest, water marshes and rippling grassland and a wealth of wildlife. There are 540 species of birds which have been identified in the park. A jungle safari through the Sal forest and open grass land may be done on the back of an elephant or in a jeep. The park is one of the last refuges of the endangered one-horned rhinoceros. A morning safari will likely lead you to the a watering hole, where you are likely to see spotted deer, wild boar, wild bison, monkeys, sloth bear, brightly colored exotic birds, rhesus monkeys and maybe even a leopard, as there are sizeable populations of tigers, leopards. You might even see the magnificent Royal Bengal Tiger.
Later you will stop at the Elephant Orphanage where you get to pet and feed the friendly little creature, less intimidating than the jungle animals for sure.
Another adventure is the elephant bath. Clamber on top of the gigantic elephant and head down to the river for a bath. The elephants enjoy soaking you in muddy river water with a little slime from the elephants trunk mixed in!
The town of Sauraha is a small but lively tourist centre perched beside a wide, slow-flowing river – with a wall of dense jungle looming on the far bank and the surrounding countryside is a peaceful patchwork of rice fields and villages of the indigenous Tharu tribe. The Tharu people have lived here longer than history can recall. Tharu Villages are like living museums, thatched roof houses are built of mud and clay and decorated with traditional art work. Most are one-room structures with no chimney and no windows, and sometimes even no door. Most of their life takes place outside. Pots hang above the fire on the porch, goats wonder around, and no one seems to be in a hurry. Part of the cultural program is sure to be include a group in traditional colorful costumes and performing their customary stick dance.
Interestingly Tharu people lived in this naturally isolated enclave where malaria infested mosquitoes kept intruders at bay. The Tharu people have a natural immunity, a genetic predisposition acquired over centuries of living in this region. Malaria was eradicated in late 1950’s with the use of the infamous DDT. Unfortunately, the relief from mosquitoes was not without collateral damage, much of the jungle’s natural habitat perished with mosquitoes.
When planning a visit to Chitwan, try to give yourself enough time for several safaris. The wildlife is unpredictable and you can’t rely on sightings every time. Two whole days in the park is really the minimum for wildlife spotting. Visitors enjoy the domesticated elephants at the Elephant Breeding Center. The Gharial Hatchery incubates and hatches eggs of the endangered gigantic crocodiles and later releases into the river.
Be aware that the popular four-day, three-night packages to Chitwan include a day of travel at either end, so make sure you give yourself enough time to see everything!
|1||Drive to Chitwan National Park|
|2||Enjoy a Jungle Safari in Chitwan National Park|
|3||Drive to Kathmandu|
Good to Know:
What to Bring on the Jungle Safari?
Chitwan National park has a sub-tropical climate. Light clothes with natural colors are recommended. During the winter months from November to early March the mornings and evenings are cold and warm clothes are necessary. Casual comfortable clothes and shoes are recommended during the day for easy movement. In July, August and September, be prepared for rainy with suitable footwear and umbrella. Since there are many outdoor activities, we highly recommend our guests to bring a camera, binoculars, torch, insect repellent, swimwear, sunhat and sunscreen.
How to get there?
There is daily flight from Kathmandu to Bharatpur which takes about 25 minutes. Our naturalist will meet you at the airport and take you to Hotel Parkland.
Departure from Kathmandu or Pokhara early in the morning for five hours drive having picturesque view of river and valleys along the Prithivi highway and Mugling – Narayanghat road, you will be at the hotel for lunch.
From Kathmandu / Pokhara, we can transport you to rafting put in point on Trishuli River where you will be dropped off for a white water rafting experience. During the journey you can enjoy high and low water waves and surroundings scenery. At the end, our representative will be waiting to take you to the Hotel.