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Things to do in Chitwan National Park

Abhishek Subedi June 16, 2020

Chitwan National Park is a preserved natural heritage located in the Chitwan district of Nepal. It is a world heritage property where many exotic birds and animals live. This National Park is the home to some endangered animals like One Horned Rhino and Bengal Tiger. You can get the views of the beautiful grasslands, low farmlands, community forests, tall elephant grass and the Rapti River. As it is the habitat of many birds and animals you can hear the sound of birds chirping and rustling of leaves and branches. It is a rich natural area in the Terai, the subtropical southern part of Nepal. A total of 68 species of mammals, 544 species of birds, 56 species of herpetofauna and 126 species of fish have been recorded in the park. The park is especially renowned for its protection of One Horned Rhino, Royal Bengal Tiger and Gharial Crocodile.

There are many fun activities to experience in the Chitwan National Park. The Jungle Safari is the must to do in the National Park area as you can witness many animals and if you are lucky you can even get the sight of the stunning Bengal tiger and one horned rhino. 

1. Jungle Walk

Exploring the park on foot when accompanied by a guide is a fantastic way to get close to the wildlife. Most walks start with a gentle canoe drift downstream followed by the walk. Be aware that you enter the park with the real risk of encountering bad-tempered mother rhinos, tigers or sloth bears protecting their young. Generally, the bigger the group, the safer the walk, but the experience of your guide counts for a lot. Levels of experience vary and some of the guides have a worryingly devil-may-care attitude to creeping up on rhinos. Therefore, jungle walks are not recommended for the faint-hearted. Rules stipulate that two guides are required even if there is only one customer. Before you option for a whole-day jungle walk, consider the very real risks associated with venturing deep into the park and being far from rescue and medical facilities, possibly without communication.

Things to do in Chitwan National Park

Jungle walks can be arranged through any of the lodges or travel agents in Sauraha. You can be guided by the Independent guides which can be found through the travel agents in the Sauraha.  They will let your jungle walk be a memorable one with precise knowledge and information.

2.  Elephant Safari

Elephant Back Safari is the most popular and adventurous way to encounter the scores of wild animals including rare one- horned rhinos and too elusive Royal Bengal tigers as well as hundreds of birds and a number of reptiles. The experienced Mahouts take you deep into the forest to ensure more sights of animals at a closest possible distance to make your trips more enjoyable and meaningful. While elephant rides were traditionally offered by both the government and private contractors, the government now no longer offers them at all.  At the time of research private elephant safaris were restricted to the park buffer zones or community forests, while major lodges and guide services have stopped these tours altogether.

Things to do in Chitwan National Park

3. Canoeing

Canoeing is one of the fun activities to do in the Chitwan National Park. An altogether relaxing way to explore the park is on a canoeing trip on the Rapti or Narayani Rivers. You will have an excellent chance of spotting water birds and crocodiles. The most typical canoe trips start from the Sauraha and include a one hour downriver followed by a two hour guided wall back to Sauraha, with a stop at the elephant breeding centre. Canoe trips can be easily arranged either through your hotel or a booking agency in Sauraha.

Things to do in Chitwan National Park

You will be put in an authentic hand carved Nepali dugout. Not only is the Canoe ride the best way to view the riverside scenery, the ride is best for the sighting of crocodiles and other aquatic creatures. Long  excursions are ideal for those who want to get away from the crowds. One recommended option is a two hour canoe ride followed by a 16 kilometer walk to Kasara and a jeep ride home.

4.  A New Elephant Experience

In response to rising concerns about elephant welfare, pioneering Tiger Tops Tharu Lodge has once again led the way through the development of an entirely new elephant experience for guests, along with new captivity and treatment standards. The lodge has developed an Elephant Camp with large corrals where their dozen elephants are free to roam. The elephants are still ” working elephants” providing an interactive encounter for guests,  but instead of riding on the back of an elephant in a lurching howdah, visitors now walk alongside them on jungle walks. 

The most charming new program is Sundowners with elephants, a fresh take on elephant bathing in which visitors are served a classy happy hour on the riverbank while the elephants bathe before them at sunset. This is truly an affectionate experience, for the elephants are enormously lovely creatures, wrapping their trunks around each other with great pachyderm hugs. Mahouts are an essential part of these new experiences, so the program still provides a living for local people.

5. Village Walk

You can take a tour to the nearby Tharu village with the talented guides. The walk provides you with the ideal situation of viewing the local habitat of the Tharu community. They are also of immense interest. A professional guide will accompany you through the area and help you get insights into the Tharu way of life.

Things to do in Chitwan National Park

6. Cultural Program

You can enjoy the traditional and religious cultural program performed by the Tharus. It will be another highlight of visiting Chitwan National Park. You can go to these cultural programs through your hotels or the travel agencies of Sauraha. The Tharu in colorful traditional costumes, unique in their disparity with the common mode of dress all over Nepal, are sure to captivate your heart, soul and mind.

Things to do in Chitwan National Park

7. Elephant Bathing

Another thrilling experience for you in Sauraha will be the bathing and swimming with Elephants in Rapti River. You can enjoy playful elephants in the deep water of Rapti rivers where you can also have an opportunity for dipping and diving as per your wish.

Things to do in Chitwan National Park

8. Visit Elephant Breeding Centre

Of the two elephant breeding centers that exist in the world, one lies in the Chitwan National Park. In Nepal, the elephant is fast becoming one of the most endangered animals and the centre was established to increase its numbers. You will have an opportunity to visit the breeding centre.  Learn about the efforts to increase the pachyderm population and get to see several cow elephants and their calves.

Things to do in Chitwan National Park

9. Crocodile Breeding Centre

Crocodile breeding centre is one of the most enjoyable programs which is the part of Jeep Safari in Chitwan National Park. The endangered program is receiving the attention of Chitwan National Park. along with the Crocodile you can enjoy viewing scary Mugger Crocodile. It is located isolated from the crowd which is in the time frame of 20- 30 minutes. The charming view of Crocodile from egg to giant one will make your visit fruitful.

Things to do in Chitwan National Park

10. Ox cart or Pony Ride Chitwan

Ox Cart or Pony ride is one of the best options to explore the Tharu village in Sauraha, Chitwan. One Ox can accommodate 6 people once where the tour guide will be there to explain about the indigenous Tharu community’s culture and their lifestyle and other many things. Ox cart and Pony ride is environment friendly and always a funny way to explore the Tharu  village. 

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