Exciting Facts About Similipal National Park:
Simlipal National Park is a beautiful national park located in the Marurbhanj district of the state of Odisha. Simlipal was once a hunting ground for the former rulers of Marurbhanj. The area is today credited as India’s largest wildlife sanctuary and is considered one of India’s tiger projects.
The name Simlipal is derived from the silk-cotton tree called Simul in the local language. The region of Simlipal is rich in dense forests, meadows, picturesque waterfalls, and rivers.
Exciting Facts About Similipal National Park
The cool breeze from the dense forests, the sound of birds chirping, the white waterfalls falling from the hills, and the wildlife strolling in the meadows will enchant you. Simlipal National Park is open for tourists from November to mid-June. The lush green environment of Simlipal is also considered the best for forest camps.
Simlipal is also known as Elephant Reserve. The local Santhal tribal settlement here is dependent on the flora. Simlipal National Park is spread over an area of 2,750 square kilometers. The entire Simlipal area is undulating, extending from 600 m to 1,500 m.
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The high hills of Simlipal surround Meghasani, the highest peak of the National Park. The temperature here reaches 40 °C in the summer season and drops to 14 °C in the winter season. The region receives average rainfall.
History of Simlipal National Park
Originally a hunting ground for the rulers of Mayurbhanj, Simlipal was designated a Tiger Reserve in the year 1956 and an essential part of Project Tiger in May 1973. This is the same reserve where the mugger crocodile scheme was introduced and as a result, the same year the Odisha government declared Simlipal Wildlife Sanctuary covering an area of 2,200 square kilometers.
Later an area of 845.70 square kilometers was added to Simlipal and in 1994 it was declared a Biosphere Reserve. Simlipal National Park In May 2009, UNESCO included this National Park in its list of Biosphere Reserve. But unfortunately, despite being one of the 15 biosphere reserves of India, it has not yet been declared a full-fledged National Park. The main reason for this is that about 10,000 population live in 61 villages inhabited within it which brings human intervention in the development of Simlipal. Today Simlipal National Park is spread over an area of 2,750 square kilometers.
Wildlife Found in Simlipal National Park
Due to proper protection and better habitat, Simlipal National Park is the safest place for wildlife. The wildlife found in which national park is as follows:
- Barking deer
- Spotted deer
- Flying squirrel
- Monitor lizard
More than 230 species of birds are found in Simlipal National Park such as :
- Gray hornbill
- Indian Pied Hornbill
- Malabar Pied Hornbill
- Indian Trogan
- Red jungle fowl
- Hill myna
- Alexandrin parakeet
- Crested serpent eagle
Flora found in Simlipal National Park
Simlipal National Park is home to more than 102 types of plants as well as more than 1,076 species of different types of plants and herbs. There are tropical moist broad-leaf forests and tropical moist deciduous forests, along with dry deciduous montane forests and high-level sal forests.
The large grassland savanna provides pasture for herbivores and a hiding place for carnivores. It is a source of income for the local tribal people. Tribal people collect herbs and aromatic plants with medicinal properties from this national park.
What you can and can’t do in Simlipal National Park
- A permit is required to enter Simlipal Tiger Reserve, so please enter the park only after obtaining a permit.
- Tourists are required to carry a litter bag when entering the park, any non-biodegradable waste such as plastic, glass bottles, metal, foil, or tin cans of any kind is forbidden inside the park.
- Before entering you will need to get an official registered guide who will help you spot the wildlife and make sure you don’t lose your way in the wild.
- Wild animals are the real asset of the park, respect them and keep a safe distance from them.
- Listen to the melodious music of the forest instead of any of your sound equipment.
- Wear clothes that match the natural surroundings, or colors such as khaki, olive green, or some other color that blends with the colors of the forests.
- When not in use, turn off lights, fans, and water taps.
- It is mandatory to obtain an evacuation certificate before leaving your place of residence within the Tiger Reserve.
- A maximum of two adults and two children (under 12 years) are allowed per room in a hotel or lodge in a tourist area, so make sure to book rooms before you travel.
- Drive slowly sister in the Simlipal Tiger Reserve area.
Don’ts at Simlipal Tiger Reserve
- Smoking and setting fire to any person is prohibited within the Tiger Reserve.
- Driving after sunset inside the Tiger Reserve is strictly prohibited.
- Cooking is not allowed inside the Tiger Reserve.
- Playing transistors and tape records of any kind is strictly prohibited inside the Tiger Reserve.
- Do not take your sisters away from the designated routes, which may harm the plants or animals.
- Do not blow the horn inside the reserve area, and do not drive over the speed limit.
- Take note of the permitted area, as the entry of visitors to the restricted area, is restricted.
- Inside the Tiger Reserve, yelling or attempting to feed the animals is prohibited, with severe punishment.
- Non-vegetarian food is strictly prohibited within Simlipal Tiger Reserve.
- It is forbidden to enter the National Park after sunset.
- Your permit to National Park is o transferable, so do not attempt any kind of unfair means.
Attractive Tourist Places Around Simlipal National Park
Joranda Falls – Simlipal National Park is the most attractive tourist spot in the area. Joranda Falls is located in the core area of Simlipal National Park. There are dense forests around it. It is an attractive place to admire the panoramic view of nature and a very special picnic spot for tourists. Taking a bath under the waterfalls falling from a height of 150 meters will be a very unique experience for you.
Barehipani Falls is one of the most spectacular waterfalls in the area. Set against the backdrop of the splendid forest of Simlipal, tourists throng to take a bath under this waterfall. Barehipani Waterfall is a wonderful place. In the hectic urban life, it is a different experience to bring freshness along with the beauty of this place.
In Simlipal National Park, there is not only sightseeing, and wildlife observation but also many more that keep the tourists entertained to the fullest. Trekking in the difficult dense forest area of Simlipal Tiger Reserve gives a different experience. In this place surrounded by undulating hilly terrain, hiking and uphill trekking are an attraction for adventurous tourists. The camping services make necessary arrangements for the tourists braking in this area and to make the trekking even more interesting, the experienced guides provide the trekkers with factual information and hazards while trekking and assist them.
Getting to know the life of the local tribal society closely
Simlipal area is an ideal place to learn and learn about the life and culture of the tribal society of Odisha. Tourists can interact with local residents and participate in local customs and festivals.
Situated at a distance of 18 km from the Simlipal area, this area is important for tourists. Visitors come from far and wide to know about the pre-historic era and living here. This area is very special for people interested in archeology.
Google Map: Kuliana
Established in 1400 AD by Maharaja Harihar Bhanj, it is a famous place to visit around the Simlipal area. The Haripur region was considered the capital of the kingdom of Mayurbhanj. The Rasikkarai Temple adds to the beauty of the region. Apart from this, what makes the place even more special is the rectangular-shaped Radha Mohan Temple and the Godhiya-style architecture in the Jagannath Temple.
Google Map: Haripur
Simlipal National Park Safari
To go to Simlipal National Park Safari, 4 jeeps are available by the forest authority. Park opening hours are from October 1 to June 15.
How to reach Simlipal National Park:
By Air: The nearest airport to Simlipal is located at a distance from Bhubaneswar (270 km), and located at a distance from Kolkata (240 km). However, driving directly from Kolkata is preferable, as waiting and boarding at the airport are hassle-free.
By Rail: The nearest railway station from Simlipal in Balasore. Which is directly connected to major trains running in South-Eastern Sector.
By Road: The most accessible point to reach Simlipal National Park is Bhubaneshwar which is 270 km away, Kolkata 240 km away, 55 km from Balasore, and only 16 km from Pithabata. Baripada, the gateway to Simlipal National Park, is also considered the main gateway, which is also the focal point of the Mayurbhanj district. It is situated at the junction of NH6 and 5. From here taxis or cabs are easily available to reach Simlipal National Park.
Hotels in Simlipal:
There are many jungle lodges and guest houses in Odisha tourism, which are well equipped with ample services. Where you can take shelter in a comfortable way during your visit to the National Park.
What is the tiger population in Simlipal Tiger Reserve?
The tiger population in Simlipal Tiger Reserve is 94. Tigers are found in the southern part of the main Tiger Reserve.
Is there a black tiger too?
Black tigers are not a separate species or sub-species of tigers. They are a distinct color variant of the Bengal tiger, and their overall black coloration is due to a melanistic pigmentation.