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Kaziranga National Park lies partly in Golaghat district and partly in Nagaon district of Assam. It is one of the oldest parks of India, covering an area of 430 square kilometres along the Brahmaputra river on the north and Karbi Anglong hills on the south. Due to its unique natural environment Kaziranga National Park was declared as a mational park in 1974 and subsequently it was declared as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1985.
The most famed animal of this park is the One horned Rhinoceros and this park is supposed to host almost two-thirds of this endangered species. The park is also home to a large number of tigers, elephants, wild buffaloes, bears and numerous species of birds. The landscape of Kaziranga consists of sheer forests, tall elephant grass, marshes and large water pools.
The park has variable fee structure which can be detailed as below:
The park can be best explored on either a jeep safari or an elephant safari. The sighting of various animals can not be guaranteed but if you join an early morning safari, you are more likely to sight the maximum number of animals.
Summer, Monsoon and winter are the three main seasons experienced in the park. The winter season usually between November and February is mild and dry and the day time temperatures average around 25 °C. The summer season between March and May is quite hot with day time temperatures reaching up to 37 °C. The rainy season lasts from June to October and some parts of the park are flooded due to the rising water level of the Brahmaputra River. This flooding causes most of the animals to migrate to higher regions of the park.
The best season to visit the park is from mid November to early April when the weather is pleasant and dry.
The nearest International Airport is Guwahati International Airport which is around 217 kilometres from the park. About 10 airlines serve the airport and destinations include Delhi, Kolkata, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Chennai, Bangalore and many more Indian cities. Jorhat and Tezpur are the other airports located nearby which are around 97 kilometres and 100 kilometres respectively from the park. They have far less flights though, although Jorhat has Delhi and Kolkata flights at least.
The nearest railhead is located at Furkating which is around 75 kilometres from the Kaziranga National Park. Furkating is connected by trains from Delhi and Kolkata
The town nearest to the park is Bokakhat which is around 23 kilometres away. The main gate of the Kaziranga National Park at Kohora is situated on the National Highway number 37 and it consists of a number of cafes and a market which sells local produce. Private taxis are easily available from nearby towns to the park.
Assam State Transport buses between Guwahati, Tezpur and parts of Upper Assam usually stop at the main gate of the Kaziranga National Park. Jorhat, Nawgaon, Dibrugarh or Tinsukia have connections as well.
All travelers have to be necessarily accompanied by an authorized guide of the forest department. The park can be best explored on either a jeep safari or an elephant safari. Elephant safari starts very early in the morning and continues for 90 minutes or so exploring the grassy areas of the park. It is indeed fun spotting wildlife while having a joy ride on the majestic elephants. Jeep safari is available during the morning and afternoon and it usually lasts for 3-4 hours and is accompanied by an authorized guide. The main attraction in these safaris is the spotting of one horned rhinoceros.
Apart from the national park tourists can also stroll through the coffee and rubber plantations of the nearby Karbi Anglong. Tourists can also visit the Karbi villages and meet the Karbi people and learn about the tea plantations which is so commonly found in Assam.
Most of the lodges and other places to stay provide breakfast and dinner. Lunch can be had inside the park, either taken with you or provided by the tour operator. Bring your own drinks as it is usually hot and humid in the park.
Quite a few accommodation options are available in and around the Kaziranga National Park. Around four tourist lodges at Kohora and three excellent lodges inside the park are maintained by the Forest Department, Government of Assam. The Director of Tourism at Guwahati can be contacted for the reservation of these tourist lodges. Wild Grass Resort or Diphlu River Lodge are especially recommended.
Private resorts are also available outside the park borders and due to increased tourist activity some of the local population have also introduced the concept of “Bed and Breakfast” scheme.
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