Royal Bardia National Park 



Royal Bardia National Park
The park is the largest untouched wilderness area in the South of Nepal. As we arrived in a small guesthouse, we were told the whole country would be shut for for the next 3 days "due to the Maoists". The Maoists are a larger political force in Nepal. Due to the lack of presence or activity of the central Kathmandu government in the country, Maoists groups have introduced parallel community services. In many places they are said to have taken over power all together. Every now and then they will go on strike and block the whole country. Besides civil disobedience, they regularly blow up police stations and kill many in doing so. The small guesthouse we had found looked like paradise so we were happy to stay. No water in the rooms, no electricity, just a mosquito net !



Without running water or electricity, the villages around the national park feel as though they have been left untouched for the last centuries. It is said to be the best place in Nepal to watch Bengal tigers. Other animals include a rare species of river dolphin, the Gangetic dolphin, wild elephants, leopards, one-horned rhinoceros, monkeys and deers. On top of this, 250 species of birds have been recorded in the park.


Jeep safari
Our first venture into the park was done by car. Coming from the hectic roads of India, the park felt peaceful and extremely beautiful. The only animals we saw on this occasion were deers and monkeys. The park is full of huge termitaries, some of which several meters high (middle picture below). 


Walking safari
For our next visit to the park we were walking. Although at first quite scary (the only arm our guide had was a stick...) we felt safer as we did not see a single animal. Only footprints and... colourful butterflies.


River safari
What better way to watch nature than to slowly drift down a river on an inflatable boat. It is quiet and requires no effort ! This time we were more successful. After a few hours of drifting, we noticed something in our way in the water.  A rhinoceros ! Our two paddlers only just managed to stop the boat along the river bank... We watched this magnificent animal bathing in order to fight the heat for nearly 20 minutes before slowly moving his way.  


Sorry no National Geographic quality pictures.. the rhino is in the middle of the picture.. 


We thought we were seeing a wild elephant when all of a sudden this man came to rub his back and give a good scrub.. 




We are doing well !

Lahore to Bardia Back to Trip page To Kathmandu