Protected Areas of Nepal The Protected Areas (PA's) in Nepal include eight national parks, four wildlife reserves, one hunting reserve and three conservation areas and five buffer zones covering an area of 26,666sq.km that is 18.11% of the total area of the country. Out of 118 ecosystems identified in different physiographic zones in Nepal, 80 ecosystems are represented in the protected areas. The Department of National parks and Wildlife Conservation is responsible for the Pas.
Annapurna Conservation area:
The Annapurna Conservation (ACA) is spread over 7,629 sq. km. of Kaski, Myagdi, Parbat and Manang districts in northwest Nepal. Established in 1986, the conservation area is surrounded by high mountains and deep valleys. A mosaic of ethnic groups has carved lifestyle out of its steep terraces and barren plateaus. The conservation area is also home to 1,226 species of plants, 38 species of orchids, 9 species of Rhododendrons, 101 species of mammals, 478 species of birds, 39 species reptiles and 22 species of amphibians.
Annapurna Conservation Area is a major trekking destination in Nepal. More than 40,000 tourists annually visit the conservation area. Ghandruk and Lwang are typical Gurung villages with scenic splendors. The King Mahendra Trust for Nature Conservation (KMTNC), a leading non-profit and non-governmental environmental organization in Nepal, launched the Annapurna Conservation Area Project (ACAP) in 1986. ACAP’s grassroots philosophy involves local people in all aspects on conservation and development. The project aims to improve the socio-economic condition of the local people by integrating conservation and development. It encourages local people’s participatory involvement in the management of natural resources and community development activities.
We operate Marshyandi valley botanical treks (the flower field of Annapurna) in this conservation area. Click here for more details.
BARDIA NATIONAL PARK
Established: First gazette in 1976 and further extended in 1984. National Park status was gazette in 1988.
Location: Royal Bardia National Park is situated in the mid-far western terai, east of the Karnali River.
Features: The Park is the largest and most undisturbed wilderness area in the Terai. About 70% of the Park is covered with dominantly sal forest with a balanced mixture of grassland, savanna and riverine forest. Approximately 1500 inhabitants of this valley have been resettled elsewhere. Since farming has ceased in the Babai valley, natural vegetation is regenerating, making it an area of prime habitat for Wildlife. The Park provides excellent habitat for endangered animals like the rhinoceros, wild elephant, tiger swamp deer, black buck, gharial crocodile, marsh mugger crocodile and dolphin, endangered birds include the Bengal florican, lesser florican andsarus crane. More than 30 different mammals, over 200 species of birds, and many snakes, lizards and fish have been recorded in the Park’s forest, grassland and river habitats. A good number of resident and migratory birds are found in the Park.
DHORPATAN HUNTING RESERVE
Area: 1,325 sq. km.
Location:Dhorpatan Hunting Reserve is situated in the Dhaulagiri Himal range in Western Nepal.
Features:Dhorpatan is the only hunting reserve in the country. The reserve is divided into six blocks for hunting management purposes. The reserve’s elevation ranges from 2,850m to more than 7,000m.
The reserve is characterized by alpine, sub-alpine and high temperate vegetation. Common plant species include fir, pine, birch, rhododendron, hemlock, oak, juniper and spruce. Pasturelands at higher elevations occupy more than 50% of the total reserve area.
The hunting reserve is one of the prime habitats for blue sheep, a coveted trophy. Other animals found include leopard, goral, serow, Himalayan tahr, Himalayan black bear, barking deer, wild boar, rhesus macaque, langur monkey and mouse hare. Endangered animals in the reserve include musk deer, wolf and red panda. The bird species found within the reserve is rich in diversity including several endangered species of pheasants and partridges. Impeyan pheasant, cheer pheasant, Satyr Trapopan, and Himalayan pied woodpecker are also found here.
Please email us for tours /treks of this reserve ( 14days)
Kanchenjunga Conservation Area : Kanchanjunga Conservation Area (KCA) spread over 2035 sq.km. in Taplejung district, lies in the northeast corner of Nepal. It is named after Mt. Kanchenjunga (8,586m)- second highest mountain in Nepal and the third highest in the world. Taplejung district is also renowned for high peaks (eleven peaks higher that 7,000 m) and glaciers. The conservation area with unique mountain ecosystems is envisioned as a tri-national peace park with Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR) of China to the north and Sikkim, India, in the east. Sikkim already has Khangchenzonga National Park adjoining KCA whereas the extension of Qomolungma Nature Reserve in TAR, to cover the land bordering KCA, is in progress. In April 1997, His Majesty’s Government of Nepal declared Kanchenjunga region as a Gift to the Earth as part of WWF’s Living Planet Campaign 2000. Kanchenjunga was designated as a conservation area in March 1998.
Flora and Fauna: Kanchenjunga Conservation Area is home to wildlife species such as snow leopard, musk deer, Himalayan black bear, goral, blue sheep, serow and common leopard. Himalayan larch and extensive juniper forests found here are unique to this part of Nepal.
Culture: The region has a mosaic of ethnic groups. The religious sites (temples and monasteries) in the area attest to Kanchenjunga’s rich cultural heritage. Local people combine agriculture, pastoralism and trade to subsist.
Climate: High rainfall and a considerably humid atmosphere generally characterize the climate of the conservation area. Generally, a dry period does not exist. The number of frost days is also very high.
The Project: The Department of National Parks and Wildlife Conservation joined hands with WWF Nepal Program and launched the Kanchenjunga Conservation Area Project in 1997 for the sustainable management of the region’s pristine ecosystem. The Department and WWF are presently working with community-based organizations of the area for the participatory management of natural resources and also to improve local people’s living conditions through integrated conservation and development.
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KHAPTAD NATIONAL PARK
Area: 225 sq. km.
Location:Khaptad National Park is situated in the midmountain region of Far-Western Nepal.
Features:The vegetation of the park varies from sub-tropical in the lower altitudes to temperate forest with grasslands on the Khaptad plateau. The common tree species are rhododendron, chir pine, spruce, fir, maple, birch and alder. Dense stands of bamboo (nigalo), prairie flowers, and a variety of medicinal herbs occur inside the park.
The common mammals of the park are leopard, musk deer, goral, yellow-throated marten, Himalayan black bear, Himalayan tahr and langur monkey. The common bird species include Impeyan pheasant (danphe), chukor, partridge, kalij pheasant, monal, red and yellow-billed blue magpie and Himalayan griffin. A variety of colorful butterflies, moths and insects are also found here.
The core area of the park is an important religious site. The park is home to the Ashram of Khaptad Swami, a renowned spiritual saint, along with other religious areas and temples.
Please email us for an itinerary and travel plan for this park
Koshi tappu Wildlife Reserve
The reserve is a wetland of international significance. In 1987, it was declared a Ramsar site. It is home to more than 280 bird species including 20 duck species, 2 species of ibises, many storks, egrets and herons. The endangered swamp partridge and Bengal florican are found here. The Koshi Barge is an extremely important resting-place for migratory birds.
The last surviving population of wild buffalo or arna is found here. The reserve is also home to many types of mammals such as hog deer, spotted deer, wild boar and blue bull. The endangered Gharial crocodile and Gangetic dolphin have been recorded in the Koshi River.
The vegetation mainly includes tall khar-pater grasslands with a few patches of khair-sissoo scrub forest and deciduous mixed riverine forest.
During the monsoon, the reserve is flooded with depths ranging from 10 to 300 cm. From season to season the Sapta-Koshi River changes its course.
Location:Koshi Tappu Wildlife Reserve is situated on the flood plains of the Sapta-Koshi River in Eastern Nepal.
PARSA WILDLIFE RESERVE
The reserve has a sub-tropical monsoon climate. The dominant landscape of the reserve is the Churiya hills ranging from 750m to 950m, east to west. In the Churiya hills, chir pine grows along the rivers and streams. Sabai grass, a commercially important species, grows well along the southern face of the Churiya hills. The forests of the reserve consist of tropical and subtropical vegetation with sal trees comprising 90% of it. Other trees found are khair, sissoo and the silk cotton tree.
The reserve supports a good population of the wild elephant, tiger, leopard, sloth bear, gaur, blue bull and wild dog. Other common animals are sambar deer, chital deer, hog deer, barking deer, langur monkey, striped hyena, ratel, palm civet and jungle cat. Many species of snakes are found in the reserve due to its tropical climate. The species include king cobra, common cobra, krait, rat snake and the python. There are about 300 species of birds found in the reserve. Some of the common ones include giant hornbill, peafowl, red jungle fowls, flycatchers and woodpecker.
Location:Parsa Wildlife Reserve is situated in the lowland Terai of Nepal adjoining Royal Chitwan National Park in the west.
Chitwan National Park
Chitwan National Park (RCNPRoyal Chitwan National Park (RCNP) has long been one of the country’s treasures of natural wonders. The park is situated in south central Nepal, covering 932 sq. km. in the subtropical lowlands of the inner Terai. The area comprising the Tikauli forest - from Rapti river to the foothills of the Mahabharat - extending over an area of 175 sq. km. was declared Mahendra Mriga Kunj (Mahendra Deer Park) by the late King Mahendra in 1959. In 1963, the area south of Rapti River was demarcated as a rhinoceros sanctuary. The area was gazetted as the country’s first national park in 1973. Recognizing its unique ecosystems of international significance, UNESCO declared RCNP a World Heritage Site in 1984.In 1996, an area of 750 sq. km surrounding the park was declared a buffer zone which consists of forests and private lands. The park and the local people jointly initiate community development activities and manage natural resources in the buffer zone. His Majesty’s Government has made a provision of plowing back 30-50 percent of the park revenue for community development in the buffer zone.
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Sagarmatha National park
BACKGROUND : Sagarmatha National Park lies to the northeast of Kathmandu. The park was gazetted in July 1976. It covers an area of 1,148 sq. km. of Himalayan ecological zone. The park includes the upper catchment areas of the Dudh Kosi and Bhote Kosi Rivers. The park is largely composed of the rugged terrain and gorges of the high Himalayas ranging from 2,845m at Monju to the top of the world, Sagarmatha (Mt. Everest) at 8,848m above sea level. Other peaks above 6,000m are Lhotse, Cho-Oyu, Thamserku, Nuptse, Amadablam, and Pumori.UNESCO listed the park as a World Heritage Site in 1979 for its unique natural, cultural and landscape characteristics.
Location: eastern Nepal
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Shy-Phoksundo National Park
The park is the largest national park and contains the highest lake, Lake Phoksundo, in Nepal.
The park contains luxuriant forests mainly composed of blue pine, spruce, cypress, poplar, fir and birch. The Jugdual River valley consists mostly of Quercus (oak) species. The trans-Himalayan area has near-desert type vegetation consisting of dwarf juniper and caragana shrubs.
The park provides prime habitat for the endangered snow leopard and the blue sheep. Other common animals found in the park include goral, Himalayan tahr, serow, leopard, wolf, jackal, Himalayan black bear, Himalayan weasel, Himalayan mouse hare, yellow-throated marten, langur and rhesus monkey. The park is equally rich in many species of birds such as Impeyan pheasant (danphe), blood pheasant, cheer pheasant, red and yellow billed cough, rave, jungle crow and snow partridge.
Location: Shey Phoksundo National Park is situated in the trans-Himalayan region of Northwestern Nepal.
Shuklaphant wildlife reserve
Predominant sal forests associated with asna, simal, karma, khair and sisso are found along the riversides of the reserve. Large grasslands, phantas, are found within the reserve. Main grass species include Imperate cylindrica and Saccharum heteropogon, used extensively by the local people for thatching.
The reserve provides prime habitat for swamp deer, with an estimated population of 2000 found here. Other animals in the reserve are wild elephant, tiger, hispid hare, blue bull, leopard, chital, hog deer and wild boar. A total of 200 bird species have been recorded. Many grassland birds along with the endangered Bengal florican can be seen in the phantas. Marsh mugger, Indian python, monitor lizard, cobra, krait and rat snake are recorded here
Location:Royal Suklaphanta Wildlife Reserve is situated in the southern Terai of Far-Western Nepal.