BARDIA NATIONAL PARK

BARDIA NATIONAL PARK

Bardia National Park is the largest national park of Nepal. It is situated in the Terai Region with Karnali River flowing in the east and bisected by the Babai River in the district of Bardiya. The Nepalgunj – Surkhet Highway runs along the southern borders of the National park. Together with the Banke National Park, Bardiya forms the Tiger Protection Unit. Ecologically Bardia consists of greater habitat than Chitwan with its dry deciduous forest, pockets of savannah and grasslands. The distributaries of Karnali River act as waterholes for wildlife.

Approximately 1500 people who used to live here have been relocated and since then farming has stopped here and natural vegetation of this park has prevailed. The forest here is an assortment of moist deciduous trees, grasslands and savannah. The park comprises of 839 species of flora including vascular plants and gymnosperms. Like Chitwan, Bardiya is also famous for its one – horned rhinoceros.

Location Bardia District (Nepal) 
Nearest AirportNepalgunj Airport: 90 km (3 hrs. drive). It takes about a 50 mins flight from Kathmandu Airport to Nepalgunj.
Nearest Bus StandFrom Kathmandu: Regular buses to Mahendranagar leave from Gongabu Bus Stand (in Kathmandu) whereby one can get down at Ambassa before boarding an another bus to Thakurdwara for Bardia National Park. Journey time: 15 hrs.
From Pokhara: Daily buses leave from Pokhara to Mahendranagar or Dhangadi passing through Ambassa Bardia. Journey time (approx.): 12 hrs.
Key Wildlife AttractionsBengal Tiger, One horned Rhinoceros, Swamp Deer, Wild Elephant, Gangetic Dolphin, Gharial and marsh mugger crocodiles.
Total Area Covered968 sq. km.
Established in Year1988
VegetationMoist deciduous forests with alluvial grasslands, Savannah and marshlands.
Best Time to VisitThe best time of the year to visit the Bardia National Park is from October to May.
ClimateOctober – March: Temperature varies between 25 – 37°C except during December and January.
Winters last from mid-December to end of January. Temperature during this period varies from 7-12°C and the weather could be foggy at times
Summers are from February to May. Animals during this period approach the water holes or the river thus giving a better chance to spot them.
Monsoon: June – August, could be the wrong time to visit the park. The weather is hot and sticky, and the rising water level makes the park inaccessible.

BARDIA NATIONAL PARK ACTIVITIES

Bardia National Park can be best enjoyed if you take a customized experience over a period 4-5 days. There are many half, full or muti-day adventure activities to choose from as mentioned below. We recommend you book the desired activities in advance so the required permits can be taken, and camping gears, food and transport arrangements can be made.

Activity DurationDescription
Jungle WalkHalf/Full DayA Jungle Walk is a great opportunity to observe the wildlife and birds from close quarters at the Bardia National Park. You will be accompanied by trained naturalists on this trip who will offer valuable insights into the flora and fauna of the jungle. Covering a distance of 5-8 kms. (for half day), the journey would include walking along small tracks, criss-crossing rivers, and waiting alongside the riverbanks or watchtowers to observe the wildlife movement. Full day jungle walks will cover a distance of 15-20 kms.
Jeep SafariHalf/Full DayThe Jeep Safari allows to cover more distance taking you deeper into the jungle with short breaks at popular sighting spots and watchtowers. A half day jeep safari during morning hours can be combined with a half day jungle walk in the afternoon to offer you a varied experience.
RaftingHalf/Full/Multi DayRafting on the Karnali, Geruwa or Babai river can provide a good opportunity for sighting of birds, animals or the rare Gangetic river dolphin. The tour includes short jungle walks and stopovers at some good wildlife viewing spots.
FishingFull/Multi DayThe Himalayan waters are known for the famous freshwater fishes such as Goonch catfish and Golden mahseer along with many other species. Anglers can enjoy fishing at the Karnali, Babai or Bheri river. A good time or the best season for fishing in these waters is from October to November and February to May
Bird WatchingHalf/Full/Multi DayThe Bardiya National Park is home to more the 400 species of birds including the endangered Bengal florican and Sarus crane. A good time of the year or the best season to go on a Birding tour is between September – November and February – April.
Visit to Elephant Breeding Center2 hoursThe Elephant Breeding Center at Hattisar was established in 1985 for captive breeding of domesticated elephants. A visit to this center will offer you insights into the life of elephants, their nature and habitats. A good time to visit this farm is after 4 pm when the elephants have returned from grazing, and their patrolling schedule. One can also take an elephant ride into the forest during early morning or late afternoon.
Crocodile Breeding Center2 hoursSituated within the park is a small breeding center for marsh mugger crocodiles, gharial crocodiles, and turtles. Very near to this center is the Tharu museum which showcases the culture and tradition of the Tharu people
Blackbuck Conservation AreaFull DayCovering an area of 15.95 sq. km., the conservation area was established in 2009 in the Bardiya district to preserve the endangered Blackbuck.
Trekking and CampingMulti Day
River Rafting and Fishing ExpeditionMulti Day

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