5 Best National Parks in North East India for nature and adventure lovers
North-east India shouldn’t be ignored as a faraway region but should be taken as one of the best regions for wildlife tours in India. Here are some facts about some of the best national parks and wildlife sanctuaries of the North-east India that will help you to plan your North-east tour in the coming wildlife season.
Kanchendzonga National Park, Sikkim
The only national park in Sikkim which covers an area of 850 square kilometers, the Kanchendzonga National Park is home to many endangered animal species like the Snow Leopard, Himalayan Black Bear, Red Panda and Asiatic Wild Dog. It is surrounded by the mighty Himalayan ranges and preserves a rich biosphere including many medicinal plants, herbs and alpine grasses. The Kanchendzonga National Park mostly comprises a mixed forest of oak, fir, birch, maple and willow and houses several species of mammals and birds. Amongst the mammals, Sloth Bear, Himalayan Tahr, Civet, Tibetan Wild Ass, Himalayan Blue Sheep, Serow, Goral and Takin are some of the major attractions. There are more than 500 species of birds found in the biosphere of the park at different altitude levels.
Balphakram National Park, Meghalaya
One of the hotspots of North-east India for adventure enthusiasts that is the 220 square kilometers the Balphakram National Park in Garo Hills, which is home to a rich variety of flora and fauna. The National Park is home to Water Buffalo, Red Panda, Elephant and eight species of cats. The best time to visit the Balphakram National Park is between April and June when one can also check out the various species of colourful butterflies. It is also a paradise for bird lovers. Magpie-Robin is a favourite bird in this bird kingdom. Some of the common birds are – Hoopoe, Long Tailed Broadbill, Scarlet Minivet, Burmese Roller, Blue-throated Barbet, Red-vented Bulbul, Himalayan Black Bulbul, Himalayan Whistling Thrush, Spotted Forktail, Black-breasted Kalij Pheasant, Red Jungle Fowl, and Myna like Jungle Mynas, Hill Mynas.
Namdhapa National Park, Arunachal Pradesh
Spreading over an area of 1,985 square kilometers in the Eastern Himalayan biodiversity belt in Arunachal Pradesh, the Namdhapa National Park is the largest national park in North-east India and is the only natural park that is home to four kinds of felines – the common Indian Leopard, Snow Leopard, Clouded Leopard and Tiger. The Namdhapa National Park comprises many different vegetation zones, including semi-evergreen and moist deciduous forest comprising mainly of thatch and grasses. It is a safe haven to several species of mammals, reptiles and birds. The rare mammal species other than four kinds of felines include the Red Panda, Himalayan Black Bear and Dhole. The common species that are frequently spotted are the Red Giant Flying Squirrel, Common Palm Civet, Mongoose, Cats, Wildboar, Musk Deer, Sambar, Gaur, Goral, Serow, Takin and Bharal. Amongst the bird species… different kinds of hornbills, blabbers, weavers, kingfishers, woodpeckers, eagles and owls are the major attractions for bird lovers. Travellers can also indulge themselves in a tribal tour inside the Namdhapa National Park. The Lisu, Chakma, Tangsa and Singpo are some of the indigenous tribal settlements in and around the Namdhapa National Park. The best time to visit is between October and May.
Murlen National Park, Mizoram
Close to the Chin Hills and Lengteng Wildlife Sanctuary, the Murlen National Park, which covers an area of 200 square kilometers, is home to a rich variety of flora and fauna. The park is known for the presence of animals like Sambar, Barking Deer, Malayan Giant Squirrel, Black Bear, Serow, Hoolock Gibbon and Rhesus Macaque. Amongst the bird species the Hume’s Pheasant, Kallej Pheasant, Common Patridge, Hill Myana and Dark Rumped Swift are frequently spotted.
Keibul Lamjao National Park, Manipur
One of the best features of Keibul Lamjao National Park, which is located amid the Loktak Lake in Bishnupur district in Manipur, is that it is the only floating park in the world. The national park covers an area of 40 square kilometers and is home to several tribal communities of North-east India including the Thang, Brel and Maril tribes. It comprises mostly of moist semi-evergreen forests having a combination of aquatic, wetland and terrestrial ecosystem and provides a shelter to a highly diversified species of mammals, reptiles and birds. Amongst the mammals and reptiles species… the Blue-Crested Lizard, Viper, Krait, Cobra, Rat Snake, Python, Wild Boar, Civet, different types of deer and cats and Flying Fox are frequently sighted. The lesser Sky Lark, Black Kite, Kingfisher, Spotbill Duck, Blue-winged Teal, Ruddy Shell Duck and Cranes are the major attractions for bird lovers.