Bardiya National Park
Bardiya National Park Overview
Bardia National Park was established in 1988 as a Royal Bardiya National Park. It covers a surface area of 968 km2 (374 sq mi) and is the largest National Park in Terai. The National Park adjoins the eastern bank of the Karnali River, bisecting the Babai River in the Bardiya district. The neighboring national park to Bardiya is Banke National Park, with a surface area of 1,437 km2. . This park was established with a objective of protecting the ecosystem and conserving the habitat of many wild animals. About 70% of the park is covered with green vegetation. There are 839 species of flora which includes 173 vascular plants species. There are 642 faunal species in Bardiya National Park which includes 125 species of fish, 23 species of reptiles, and 53 mammals. One-horned rhino, Indian leopard, Bengal tiger, rusty-spotted cat, etc are found here. There are 407 species of birds including Bengal florican, white-rumped vulture, bar-headed geese, etc.
Things to do in Bardiya National park
Jungle walk- jungle walk is one of the adventurous and thrilling activities to do in Bardiya National Park. During this walk, you can pass through the dense forest towards the bank of the Karnali River and around the natural habitats of wild animals. However, you need at least one other trekker and a licensed guide. Weapons or any kind of harmful stuff are not allowed to carry during the walk. Guides take the tourist for a 5 to 10km walk where trekkers can encounter many elephants, rhinos, birds, and deer. It is also not allowed to make unnecessary noises during the jungle walk. Jungle walk might cost you 1500-4000 depending on the half or full-day tour.
Jeep safari– Jeep safari is one the best way to explore the jungle and witness many animals and plants. During this safari, you will be sitting on the back of the open jeep and the driver will be showing you different spots and animals. There is also a guide provided who will guide you with directions, give information about the plants and animals, and try to spot as many animals as they can. There are basically two options available for a jeep safari. One is a half-day tour which is 4 hours long. You will be sitting with 7 other people in a jeep and exploring the jungle. And the other option is a full-day tour that is 10 hours long. Here, you will have more comfortable cars and seats. In this full-day tour, you will go more deeply into the jungle and probably witness tigers. When you are on a jeep safari tour, you are not allowed to leave the jeep and walk around. Also, you need to show your national park permit in different places so it is best to keep it safe. A half-day jeep safari tour costs 180$+ National Park permit. And a full day jeep safari tour costs 240$+National Park permit.
Bird watching– Bardiya National Park is home to more than 400 species of birds. Many people visit Bardiya National park just for bird watching. The best time for bird watching is during the jungle walk.
Exploring Tharu museum- it is said that Tharus are indigenous people of Bardiya National park. Tharu museum offers us the chance to witness some traditional houses and lifestyles of Tharu people. Their unique culture, languages, dresses, small houses, are something you do not want to miss during this tour.
Besides these, there are also many breeding centers, villages, and river boating available in Bardiya National Park. Basically, it is one of the most explored destinations of Nepal which combines, nature, diverse culture, religious values, wildlife, and adventurous features.
This Bardiya National Park tour takes around 5-6 days with proper rest. It might cost you around 550$ including flight tickets, ground transportation, food, accommodations, insurance, permits, and all activities in park.
Highlights of Bardiya National Park
- Less crowded area as compared to other National Parks
- Hospitality and great culture of Tharu people.
- Hundreds of flora and fauna of Bardiya National Park.
- Fishing and rafting in Karnali River (optional)
- Activities like Bird watching, jungle walk, elephant safari
- Witness many wild animals including rhinos, tigers, and deer