Chitwan National Park is a world heritage site and also the first national park in Nepal which is located in the mid-south Terai of Nepal. It is a huge block of alluvial grasslands and subtropical moist deciduous forests. It was established in 1973 in order to protect the endangered animals which was found there. A total of 68 species of mammals, 544 species of birds, 56 species of herpetofauna and 126 species of fish have been recorded in this park. It is really popular forone horned rhino, tigers and gharials.
Chitwan National Park is also considered as the heart of the jungle found along the foot of the Himalayas. Several activities that can be done in Chitwan are;
Jungle walk is the opportunity to explore and experience the beauty of the flora and fauna. It may be of 1 to 5 days depends upon curiosity of the guest.
Canoeing is the typical handmade dugout canoe on either the Rapti or the Buddha Rapti River, which border the national park. There are chances to see two types of crocodiles, Gharial and Mugger basking on the riverbank.
Village tour/Cultural programme:
The native people of Chitwan are Tharu who offers guided cultural tours to meet the people and experience their traditional self-sufficient way of life. They also perform traditional Tharu folk dance at hotels and invite guests to join them in their rhythmic display.
Elephant breeding center:
This is recognized as the first elephant breeding center in Asia where baby elephants socialize with their parents and other babies owned by government on the purpose to raise the young elephants.
To track rare species four wheel jeep drive is prefered in the less disturbed areas. And the facilities inside the park are not available during the monsoon.
Visitors will have great opportunity to see many species of birds in early morning. Elephant back safari,an elephant back ride is one of the safest ways to enter jungle and see the wild life as it is anexciting never to be forgotten experience.
Riding on the bare back of elephant and go to the Rapti river for swimming and washing them is great fun to play.
There is a tower in the middle of the jungle where you can spend the whole night and feel real nature surroundings.
Crocodile breeding center:
Gharial crocodile is one of the endangered species of the world. To protect them, UN has established the crocodile breeding center where we product the large number of Gharials and release them in the River.
During the ride you will get to visit 20,000 lakes area, which afford a varied experience of birds and mammals.
There are three ways of transportation from Kathmandu to Chitwan; bus, car or flight. The road distance is 154.1 km. The cheapest way of transportation is by bus which costs $5 – $7 and takes 5/6 hours approximately. There is a direct bus departing from Kathmandu and arriving at Chitwan Sauraha. The quickest way of transportation is to fly which costs approximately $110 and takes 30 mins. It takes approximately 5/6 hours to drive from Kathmandu to Sauraha by car. There are 138+ hotels available in Sauraha. Prices start at $100 per night.
Nepal may be a small landlocked country with an insignificant economic growth, but in terms of adventure tourism potential, the country boasts of some of world's best locations and adventure products. Some of the adrenaline fuelling activities on offer in the country – Himalayan mountaineering (climbing some of the highest peaks in the world ,including the highest Mt. Everest), challenging treks across high Himalayan passes, the world’s highest skydiving adventure (Everest skydive), bungee jumping from above (160m) a Himalayan river, paragliding and ultra light flights, white water rafting & kayaking etc.
The latest adventure activity on offer is ZipFlyer– a 2000ft vertical zip slide from Sarangkot hill to Hyangja village in Pokhara, covering a distance of 1.8km. According to operator HighGround Adventures, “it is the world’s most extreme zipline (1800m long, 2000ft vertical drop, 160kmph speed and 2 min ride time)”. Anyone aged above 10 yrs and with a body weight of 35-125 kgs.can take on this ride. Zipping down the slide above dense forests, riders can view the magnificent Machhapucchre and Annapurnas. The lauch pad for the zip slide is located atop Sarangkot, at 5400 feet above sea level. Two people can slide down (individually, attached to a safety harness) the zip line, at a time.
The 3rd Kaligandaki River Rafting Festival began from 6th November, 2011. The festival got underway at Ramdi, eight rafts carrying eight teams were flagged off on their rafting journey along the Kaligandaki River to Andhighat located in Kuwakot VDC. Organizers expressed their hope that the festival will help boost tourism on in Palpa, Syangja, Tanahu and Nawalparasi districts, which lie on the banks of Kaligandaki.
“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”– Mark Twain
Thus wrote Mark Twain, noted American humorist and author, exhorting all and sundry to set off for the unknown, fearless and uninhibited.
A group of six spirited female adventurers (most of them in their 40s) from Canada and France seemed to have taken his advice to heart and sought to climb Mera Peak , Nepal’s highest trekking peak in November, at the onset of chilly winter season. Explore Himalaya had the opportunity to organize the expedition for the group. After the completion of their expedition, the ladies dropped in at our office and the group leader Lou Lamontagne, spoke at length about their trip to Mera Peak and the changes she found in Nepal since her last visit in 2005.
(Expedition members (wearing scarves) with Explore Himalaya’s staff)
Though only one member (Hélène Mineau) could reach the summit, Lou said that they were all happy with the expedition.
To quote Lou – “We would have liked to do the summit but for us not doing the summit is not a disaster. We enjoyed all the aspects of the expedition.. that’s the most important thing.”
Read about their trip in Lou’s own words :
“We were six people – five Canadians(Marie Légaré, Carole CôTÉ, Hélène Mineau, Isabelle Gagnon & Lou Lamontagne) and one French (Severine Tralli). We are a group of friends and we have done a lot of mountaineering and kayaking and outdoor stuff in the past and so we knew each other. I proposed them a trip to Nepal and they said OK. So we went on internet and tried to find a good company. Actually we found your website. We have some friends in Pokhara called 3 Sisters Adventure. They are into trekking also, but they didn’t do Solu Khumbu trekking, just the Annapurna. So we checked with them. We asked if you were a good company and they said you had a good reputation and we could trust you and we went ahead.
Our trek was excellent. It met all our expectations and we are very happy with the way we were received at the airport. We are also very happy with the expedition itself, the way the staff took care of us. We really appreciated all the small little attention, you know, like bed tea and wash water. They (Explore Himalaya’s staff) just generally made sure that our safety and security was on the agenda.
In 2005 I did the Around the Annapurna Trek (21 days), and that was wonderful also. This expedition was much, much harder. Only one member from our group summitted. I had a bad bronchitis problem in Khare just before High Camp. I knew that I couldn’t summit because I was coughing very bad and I had a fever. The other five members went up to High Camp. But four of them got sick with altitude sickness and just one summitted. But that’s okay we would have liked to do the summit but for us not doing the summit is not a disaster. We enjoyed all the aspects of the expedition. So that’s the most important thing.
When I was here in 2005, it was in the middle of People’s War. We witnessed a great military presence everywhere and the Maoists used to stop us and ask for money. We could feel the political upheaval. It was pretty serious at that time and the King was almost out of a job. But now that the Civil War is over, I find more trekkers on the trail and the hotels, tea- houses and lodges doing good business. Things are back to normal.
I would like to come back and visit Dolpo region. This trip was wonderful and we were happy with everything. This was truly a wonderful trip and I am sure we will meet again.”
(Photos Courtesy : Marie Légaré & Isabelle Gagnon)