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Jaldapara National Park: All you need to know about the Wildlife Safaris

By Shrinivas - July 15, 2020
Jaldapara_National_park

Established as a wildlife sanctuary in the year 1941, Jaldapara National Park is a spectacular destination on the foothills of the Eastern Himalayas, by the banks of the Torsha River. It is based in the new Alipurduar district of West Bengal, India. The national park falls into the Dooars region, which is not only famous for its tea gardens but also boasts dense jungles home to many endangered animal species such as tigers, rhinoceros, elephants, etc.

Also read: Top 6 Wildlife Sanctuaries in Assam which are a must-visit

Overview of Jaldapara National Park

The park has lush foliage that offers a great habitat for a variety of flora and fauna. It is a paradise for bird watchers. The national park is best known for its Asiatic One-Horned Rhinos. The number of single-horned rhinos is estimated at about 160 and is growing gradually.

Jaldapara National
Source: Google Images

There are scheduled jeeps, as well as elephant safaris. The elephant safaris are organized across the beautiful grasslands early in the morning and are the safest and most popular way to experience the national park ‘s wildlife. The jeep safaris are scheduled both during the evenings and at weekends. In recent years, there has been a rise in the number of watchtowers where jeep safaris have taken place owing to a rise in visitor footfall. The only requirement of jeep safaris is that visitors have to ride in licensed jeeps in the forest department and that each jeep needs to be accompanied by a driver.

History of Jaldapara National Park

The place was historically a joint village of Toto and Mech (Bodo) groups in the 1800s. At this time the location was known as ‘Totapara.’ Jaldapara Wildlife Sanctuary was founded in 1941 to protect the large range of flora and fauna, particularly the one-horned Indian Rhinoceros, which were feared to be on the verge of extinction.

Jaldapara National Park
Source: Google Images

Also read: These 5 National Parks in Meghalaya are a must inclusion in your next trip

Best Time to visit Jaldapara National Park

Jaldapara National Park is now accessible from September 15 to June 15 and the perfect time to visit is from October to March. Throughout monsoon months the park stays closed. National park atmosphere stays mild and hot all year long.

How to Reach Jaldapara National Park

Jaldapara National Park is situated on the foothills of the Eastern Himalayas, on the banks of the Torsha River in the district of Alipurduar, West Bengal State, India. The park is built over a cumulative area of 216.51 square kilometres, at an altitude of 61 metres.

Jaldapara National Park elephants
Source: Google Images

Jaldapara lies on the west side of the Torsha River, and Chilapata Forests lies on its eastern shore. The Malangi River also runs from east to west close by. The sanctuary is drained by the rivers Torsa, Malangi, Hollong, Chirakhawa, Kalijhora, Sissamara, Bhaluka and Buri Torsa. It provides a grassland for a wide variety of mammals, amphibians, reptiles and birds to form the last refuge.

By air

Bagdogra is the closest airport, approximately 140 km from Jaldapara National Park. Take a bus or cab to Jaldapara via Siliguri, from Bagdogra airport. Along with Jaldapara National Park, you can also book a private cab from top car rental companies in Kolkata and visit all of Kolkata’s popular sightseeing sites.

By train

The closest Jaldapara railway station is Madarihat railway station. To get to Madarihat, get off at New Jalpaiguri Junction which is directly connected to all of India’s major railway stations. Take in a New Jalpaiguri (NJP) mail or express train. Not all trains stop at Madarihat station, so you can also get off at railway stations Birpara or Hasimara, which are both well connected to Jaldapara through cab services.

By road

Jaldapara is well linked to Siliguri from the national highway and is reachable by road. It is also necessary to use North Bengal Transit Corporation buses, Bhutan Government buses as well as Siliguri minibuses to get to the national park. Board the minibus which runs through Madarihat between Siliguri and New Alipurduar. Madarihat is the point of entry to the sanctuary and is situated on highway NH 31 (Siliguri- Hasimara).

Jaldapara National park entry details

Jaldapara National Park Jeep Safari Timings and fees

1.1st Shift: November to March- 6:00 AM to 7:30 AM 
                April to October- 5:30 AM to 7:00 AM
2. 2nd Shift: November to March- 7:30 AM to 9:00 AM 
                April to October- 7:00 AM to 8:30 AM
3. 3rd Shift: November to March- 3:00 PM to 4:30 PM
                April to October- 3:30 PM to 5:00 PM
4. Jeep Safari – INR 450 per person

Jaldapara National Park Elephant Safari Timings:

  1. 1st Shift: 5:30 AM to 6:30 AM
  2. 2nd Shift: 6:30 AM to 7:30 AM
  3. 3rd Shift: 7:30 AM to 8:30 AM
  4. Day Safari: 9:00 AM to 2:00 PM
  5. Elephant safari – For Indian Nationals: INR 800, For Foreign nationals: INR 1000
Jaldapara National Park Elephant Safari
Source: Google Images

Jaldapara National Park Entry Fees and Other Charges

  1. Entry fee (Indian Nationals) – INR 100
  2. Entry fee (Foreign Nationals)- INR 200
  3. Car entry fees- INR 300
  4. Guide – INR 250
  5. Still Camera – INR 50
  6. Video Camera – INR 500

Nearby Destinations from Jaldapara National Park

Totapara

Totapara is a remote aboriginal settlement that is home to the Toto Indigenous community, Dooar region’s most isolated group. The village is located on the banks of Torsha, at a distance of 30 km from Jaldapara, sharing boundaries with Bhutan. The village’s main appeal is the lifestyle of the residents.

Chilapata

Chilapata is a location for hotbeds in culture. Besides a visit to the woods of Chilpata, if you go deeper into it, there are ruins of Nal King’s thousand-year-old fort which has significant historical and archaeological significance. Ruins belonging to the Gupta Empire from the 5th century fell on the road to Cooch Behar, via the woods of Chilpata.

Also read: Honeymoon destinations in North East India to visit in 2021!

Plan your trip with Pickyourtrail to Jaldapara National Park

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