JALDAPARA WILDLIFE SANCTUARY

Elephant Safari at Jaldapara National Park

Jaldapara National Park, situated in Alipurduar district in West Bengal, is a protected forest of Dooars. This sanctuary was constituted in the year 1941 for the protection of Wildlife and in 2012 Jaldapara was entitled as a National Park. Jaldapara is the home to famous Indian one horned Rhinoceros. Jaldapara is renowned for housing the 2nd largest population of One Horned Rhinoceros in India after Kaziranga National Park of Assam. Along with being the home rare Asiatic Rhino, Jaldapara is one the few places in India where Bengal Florican has been sighted.

What can you do in Jaldapara National Park?

An adventurous Elephant Ride or Elephant Safari in the morning is the most enjoyable thing to do in Jaldapara National Park. Visitors can explore the core of dense subtropical forest in Jaldapara Elephant Safari. Please note that the elephant rides in Jaldapara are booked on the spot and cannot be reserved in advance. Jeep safari is another favored tourist activity of Jaldapara National Park. There have been more than 160 Rhinos, apart from numerous Bison, Deers, Leopards and six Bengal Tigers spotted in Jaldapara National Park. Some rare species like the Hispid Hare and the Hog-Badger are also found in Jaldapara National Park. Jaldapara is exceptionally rich in avifauna because of varied terrain, mosaic of vegetation and rich insect life. More than 240 species of birds-including Orioles, Barbets, Woodpeckers, Parakeets, Hornbills, Drongos, Cuckoos, Babblers, Brahminy Ducks and whistling teals are found in variety of habitat - Grassland, water bodies, woodland. A wide variety of vegetation makes it a botanist's paradise as well. Visitors can witness all these wonders while going on a Jungle Safari at Jaldapara National Park.

Jungle Safari at Jaldapara National Park

Elephant Rides or Elephant Safari are the most attractive activity in the park and this is extremely popular among the visitors in Jaldapara National Park. The best way to explore Jaldapara is by taking the one-hour elephant safari. A maximum of four people are allowed on each elephant. The safari conducted from the Hollong Tourist Lodge at Madarihat is subject to the availability of elephants. The park authorities do not provide vehicles from your resort or hotel till the safari point, so you will have to rent one car either from North Bengal Tourism or any other travel agency at Jaldapara. A forest guard must accompany the jeep. The entry fee is Rs.100 per person for Indians and Rs.150 per person for foreign nationals. Jaldapara Elephant Safari cost for Indians is Rs.500 per person and Rs.750 per person for foreign nationals. The park remains open on all days of the week except Thursday from 9:00 AM to 3:00 PM. Tourists can enter into the core area of the jungle and will get an opportunity to see the rare one-horned Rhinos and Bisons, Wild Elephants etc. The Elephant Safari of Jaldapara only operates in the morning, while Jeep Safari operates in the morning and in afternoon session as well.

Bird Watching in Jaldapara National Park

If you are a nature lover, Jaldapara will be tremendously appealing for you as it is the abode for a huge variety of birds. The sanctuary is also the last known habitat of the Bengal florican. So take a pair of binoculars and enjoy watching birds from the Watch Towers of Jaldapara. You can also walk around some areas just make sure that you have a forest guide with you. Jaldapara is truly a paradise for avid bird watchers. One can also view various other birds like Pallas's Fishing Eagle, Peafowl, Crested Eagle, Jungle Fowl, Shikra, Pied Hornbill, Patridges and many more. A variety of birds, typical of grassland and open country, can be seen from watchtowers viz. Doves, Bee-eaters, Rollers, Hoopoe, Shrikes, Larks, Hill Mynas, Bulbuls and Finches. Call of the Red jungle fowl is as common as the musical sound of crickets. Bengal Florican, Black Partridge, Shaheen Falcon, Great Pied Hornbills, Forest Eagle Owl, Large Green billed Malkoha and White Rumped Vulture, Lesser Adjutant Stork are the endangered bird species found in the Sanctuary. Some fortunate visitors can see the Peacock displaying his full array of feathers during the breeding season.

Where to stay in Jaldapara National Park

For the tourists visiting Jaldapara, accommodation can be arranged in the Jaldapara Tourist Lodge and Hollong Tourist Lodge commonly known as Hollong Bungalow. Both of these lodges are situated midst the verdant forest of Jaldapara. The Forest Guest House and Forest Bungalow in Jaldapara are maintained by forest officials. Visitors can also choose to stay in South Khayerbari. On the vicinity of Jaldapara National Park, visitors can also find few private hotels, resorts and lodges which are also a good alternative to stay in Jaldapara.

How to reach Jaldapara National Park?

The closest railway station of Jaldapara National Park is in Madarihat. The distance between Madarihat Railway Station and Jaldapara National Park is aroudn 2km. But only passenger trains like DMU gets stoppage at Madarihat Railway station. If you are coming by any long distance Train like Kanchan Kanya Express etc., you have to get down at Hasimara Railway Station which is around 12 KM away from Jaldpara National Park. Visitors can easily hire a car from both the Railway Stations to reach Jaldapara National Park.

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