Shey Phoksundo National Park

Shey Phoksundo National Park is situated in the trans-Himalayan region of north-west Nepal. It is Nepal’s largest national park.  With diverse terrain and altitude variation, the park spreads over Dolpa and Mugu districts and supports broad ranges of wildlife and vegetation. Geographical landmarks of the park are the Himalayan peaks in the north and Lake Phoksundo, in the southern region. Vegetation includes pine, walnut, willow, oak, and cypress in the lower altitude and pine, spruce, juniper and birch at higher region. Berberis, wild rose and caragana are seen in alpine areas while the region higher up are mostly arid with grass alpine meadows with barely any trees. The park contains 286 flora species of botanical importance. Animals found in the region are sheep, ghoral, musk deer and langur monkeys, Himalayan tahr, Himalayan black bear and jackals. In the upper region is seen the rare and endangered snow leopard. Over 200 species of birds including yellow-throated marten, Tibetan partridge, wood snipe, whilte-throated tit, wood accentor and crimson-eared rose finch are found in the park. Other species of birds found here are Impeyan, cheer pheasant, chough, ravens, Tibetan snow cock, Tibetan twit, brown dipper, Himalayan griffon and lammergeyer. Apart from these, the park is home to 6 species of reptiles and 29 species of butterfly.

 

Trekking and mountaineering is very popular travelers do in the park. Since it is located in remote area, tented camping trek is the most common here in Shey Phoksundo National Park. The park can be reached by about 20-minutes’ flight from Nepalgunj. March to May and September to October is the best time to travel in this park. Lower Dolpo Trek, Upper Dolpo Trek, Jumla to Dolpo Trek and  Jomsom to Dolpo Trek are some popular trekking routes in this park.

 

Khaptad National Park

Khaptad National Park is west Nepal is the home of late Khaptad Swami, the renowned scholar and a hermit. The park with rolling hills of grassland and forests of subtropical, temperate and sub alpine vegetations, is also a rich natural habitat. The park boasts of 224 species of medical herbs and offers excellent bird watching opportunities, with 270 species of birds, the common ones being different varieties of impheyan pheasant, partridges, flycatchers, bulbuls, cuckoo’s ad eagles. Animals in the park are barking deer, wild boar, ghoral, Himalayan black bear, yellow-throated marten, rhesus, monkeys and langur monkeys. The park also offers religious sightseeing at Tribeni on the way to its headquarters. There are several historical temples surrounding this area and an annual celebration of Ganga Dashhara is held here every Jestha Purnima (during May/June). Another religious site is Sahashra Linga at 3200-meters, the highest point of the park. Other religious areas in the park include Ganesh Temple, Nagdhungha, and Kedardhunga. There are ideal places for meditation. Towards the northeast of the park is Khaptad Lake where a festival is held every August and September.

 

Khaptad National Park is can be reached by flying to Chainpur from Nepalgunj and three days walking from there. Also, it can be reached by flying to Dhanghadi or drive to Dhangadi (670km) ad drive to Silgadi. March to May and October to November is the best time to travel in this park.It is very nice place for trekking in the nature. Tented camping trekking is the only option to explore Khaptad National Park.