The Dudhwa National Park is situated in Uttar Pradesh, an official state in India. It has a core of 490 square kilometres with over 120 square kilometres of buffer area. It was first established as a sanctuary for various animal species in 1958. Then, in 1977, it was declared a National Park. Eleven years later, the Dudhwa Tiger Reserve was established along the border between India and Nepal. This reserve includes the smaller hills that lie at the base of the Himalayan Mountain Range, making it an even more dramatic scene. Palia is the nearest town and has all of the necessary facilities.
This area enjoys spectacular scenery. The Suheli River forms its southern border, sustaining much of the local fauna and flora. The vegetation varies from spectacular Sal Forests to grassy savannahs and swamps. The lakes within the forests lure birds and antelope to partake of their icy waters. Some of the Sal Forest trees are well over 150 years old, towering over the forest dwellers in imposing glory. With an annual rainfall of 1600 millimetres, the land is fertile and abundant, creating a natural treasure within the borders of the Dudhwa National Park.
The Terai Strip is one of the world’s most threatened ecosystems because of its very fragile and complex nature. This delicate world is home to some 13 endangered mammalian species, including the Indian Rhinoceros (also known as the One-horned Rhinoceros), Bengal Florican, Hispid Hare and Bengal Tiger. In addition, there are nine endangered bird species and 11 endangered reptile and amphibian species. There are also five of the seven Indian deer species found in Dudhwa National Park alone. Other residents include tigers, jackals, Sambar Deer, leopards, Sloth Bears, Jungle Cats, Hog Deer, Fishing Cats and Swamp Francolin. Indian Rhinos were hunted to extinction in this area in the mid-1800’s. Since then, concerted conservation efforts were made in order to revive the population number of Indian Rhinos in the Dudhwa region. Today, there is a small population of around 20 of these valuable creatures. The savannah grasses are the natural habitat of the One-horned Rhino, and they thrive within the borders of this national park.
There are over 1600 Swamp Deer, which are fascinating and beautiful to observe. They are popular sights amongst local and international tourists who enjoy watching them live, meander and feed within their natural habitat. Similarly, there are approximately 100 tigers, which are elusive and mysterious animals; a real treat for those with a passion for wildlife.
Summer days reach highs of about 40 degrees Celsius, making it rather uncomfortable to explore the park during the heat of the day. The best time to see the fauna and flora of Dudhwa National Park is between February and April, when the temperatures have cooled slightly and rainfall is not too intense. One of the best ways to experience the natural beauty all around is on an elephant ride. From the vantage point of the back of an Indian Elephant, travellers see this world from an entirely new perspective.
Dudhwa National Park is close to several cities and other tourist attractions. It is accessible and within close proximity to major commercial and cultural epicentres.
For more information: http://dudhwatigerreserve.com/