Sunder bans national park is one of the most important bio diversity hot spots on earth. It is situated in the delta formed by the Ganges River. It is quite popular among the tourists and would go a long way in captivating the imagination of the users. Many types of invertebrate species exist in the region. Salt water crocodile is a very important animal that lives in the mangrove forest. In 1973, the area was considered to be a tiger Reserve and it became a national park in the year 1984.
Deemed as the UNESCO world heritage site, the national park is a wonderful amalgamation of the flora and the fauna. The national park covers more than 54 islands and it extends into the neighboring country of Bangladesh as well. The tiger reserve is spread across 2500 sq Km and also includes a huge national park. People from all over the world visit the place and analyze the diverse fauna in an impeccable manner. There are three wild life sanctuaries in the national park. Sajnekhali is a very important tourist destination where one can spot the tigers. Lothian and the holiday islands are some of the most amazing places that house reptiles, birds, monkeys and the deer.
The delta is situated in the south eastern direction of Kolkata and is an important part of the 24 pargana district of the west Bengal. It is closer to the Bay of Bengal and is characterized by huge swamps in an impeccable manner. Huge rivers called the Brahmaputra and the Ganges converge in the delta and form one of the famous national parks in the region. All the forest, islands and the swamps are intermeshed together to form a wonderful ensemble of wild life. Sundari trees exist in abundance in the region; therefore the delta is called the sunder bans forest. The two great rivers form a huge archipelago of about 54 islands and the water is supplied by the Bay of Bengal located in the southern part. West of the Sunder bans delta contains the Matla along with the bidya rivers in the west ward direction.
Rainfall is quite heavy and humid due to the location of the Bay of Bengal in the vicinity. The monsoon season starts from the middle of the June till the September. In the successive months fair weather holds the sway over the region and tourist can visit the places. The maximum temperature in the region is about 34 degrees and the minimum temperature is 20 degrees. The wind blows from the eastern part and brings in rain during the monsoon months. Storms are very common in the area during the month starting from October till March. Sometimes they metamorphose into cyclones and cause large amount of damage to the life and property. Most of the forest vegetation also suffers in the region.
Ecological System in Sundarbans
The Landscape in the Sundarbans National Park
It is considered to be the largest mangrove forest in the world. It is just over 7.5 m above the sea level and there is no variation in the land mass. The park is inundated with different types of islands which are 54 in number. They are connected by the different tributaries of the Ganges and the Brahmaputra River. Rivers ultimately get submerged into the Bay of Bengal.
The Flora in Sundarbans National Park
Mangrove forest is covered by the Swamp and littoral jungles that captivate the imagination of the users. Scrub forest accompanied by the brackish water forest and the alluvial grasslands are designated as bio diversity hot spots. Because of the dense forest, the sunder bans is known as the world biosphere reserve. Some of the trees found in the forest are Genwa along with dhundal and Garjan.
The Fauna in the Sundarbans National Park
The forest contains more than 400 tigers and they have adapted themselves to the surrounding environment. Big cats are extremely good swimmers and they can find their prey in region which is in abundance. Besides, the fishing cats and the macaques can be found in the area. Chitals and the flying foxes are also present in the Sunder bans forest.
The Avifauna in the Sundarbans National Park
Climatic conditions in the region help large number of birds to survive. Native along with migratory birds arrive in hordes. Open billed storks can be found in the region. Apart from above, Water hens, Caspian terns and Gray herons are available for the avid bird watchers. Sea gulls and the king fisher provide wonderful site for the tourists when they dive in the water to catch fishes. Golden Plovers and the Cormorants migrate from long distances to the delta during the winter season. It is wonderful place to study about the behavior of the bird species.
The Aqua-fauna in the Sundarbans National Park
There are many fishes and the amphibian animals in the park that would bedazzle the visitors. Electric rays along with silver carp and the star fish are present in the environment. Similarly common toads and the skimpy frog continue to create curiosity.
The Reptiles in the Sundarbans National Park
The national park has large number of reptiles which are seen in the area. People have noticed the Ridley turtles and amazing sea snakes. Apart from the above, one can find the poisonous snakes such as the king cobras and Russel Vipers. Great Pythons, Kraits along with the rat snakes exist in the sunder bans environment.
One can use boat safari to traverse the tedious routes of Sunder bans. By contacting the tour operator, it is possible to reserve a boat or a luxury one for that matter. One can also get a float from the local people to avail the opportunity for seeing the flora and fauna.
The presence of the bhagatpur crocodile farm in the region is an added attraction for the tourists which are located near the national park.
Angling along with fishing are some of the most important activities for the people. There are different types of rivers which flow through the park. Boating can be sued for catching the fishers in the area.
Most of the people visit the Sunder bans forest for watching the tigers but it is a very difficult job. So, people should hire jeep with all the protection so that they could accomplish the task in an impeccable manner.
Best Time to Visit
For the tourists, it is important to visit the sunder bans from December to February. One can watch different types of migratory birds during this season.
How to Reach
People can arrive at the Kolkata international airport which is about 112 km from the park.
The canning railway station is quite near to the park and would be ideal for the people travelling by train.
People can avail the road transport from Kolkata to Namkhana which is about 105 Km away from the designated place. It is connected to the park through the rivers. Similarly canning and the Sonakhali are also located in close proximity.
People can use the motor launch facility from the amazing Sagar and the holiday island.
Foreigners need to get the travel permit for visiting the national park. It can be obtained without cost from the tourism office of west Bengal.
Sunder bans is a wonderful tourist destination that can only be accessed by boat. It is impossible to avail the jeep safari due to the marshy swamps. If one wants to see the tiger, it is a difficult proposition. The big cats are very shy and they continue to hide in the forest. It is not possible to visit the park alone because there are many transport connections.
Boat Trip Costs
Cost of hiring the boat is around 600 Rs and 1000 Rs for a full day trip. Hiring a guide in the area would cost about 300Rs. To enter the national park, people need to pay 150 Rs and 20 Rs for the camera if they want to photograph the wild animals. Tour operators charge about 1400 Rs and a maximum of Rs 5000 for the accommodation in the national park. Visiting the place is a wonderful experience for the users and would go a long way in creating instant impression on them. Sunder bans is frequented by the tourists from all over the world and they continue to arrive in hordes. A video camera in the park would cost an upward of Rs 300. It is visual delight for the people to watch different types of flora and the faunas.
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