Art + Travel Adventure Nepal – Chitwan National Park – Day 1

Continuing on with my tale of beautiful Nepal, we set off for Chitwan National Park, where we would spend the next three days.

Chitwan National  Park – Day One

Established in 1973, Chitwan National Park is the first national park in Nepal  and was  granted the status of World Heritage Site  in 1984.

The journey would take us 6 hours along the main route from  Tibet and Kathmandu.

Glued to the window of the bus, I found myself day-dreaming of the disparate lives of the Nepalese.  Trucks,  lorries, school buses, goats strapped to the roofs of moving vehicles, stray animals wandering down the main street, we see it all!

Art + Travel Adventure Nepal - Chitwan National Park - Day 1 scenes from the road
Scenes from the road to Chitwan National Park
Art + Travel Adventure Nepal - Chitwan National Park - Day 1- Roadside goats on the way to Chitwan National Park
Roadside goats on the way to Chitwan National Park
Scenes from the Road Art + Travel Adventure Nepal - Chitwan National Park - Day 1
Scenes from the road and the Nepalese landscape

We arrive at the Jungle Safari Resort.  A quick refresh, no time to waste, then off for a ride on two oxen along the lumpy, bumpy tracks.

Oxen Carts Art + Travel Adventure Nepal - Chitwan National Park - Day 1
Oxen Carts

Local villagers look on with an air of curiosity – how different our lives are!

Ox carts
Ox carts

We come upon the elephant breeding centre.  This rural atmosphere seemed absolutely charming.

Elephant Reserve - Art + Travel Adventure Nepal - Chitwan National Park - Day 1
Elephant Reserve –

Elephant Reserve - Art + Travel Adventure Nepal - Chitwan National Park - Day 1 Elephant Reserve - Art + Travel Adventure Nepal - Chitwan National Park - Day 1

Next morning, at 5.45 am we find ourselves canoeing on the Rapti River. There was low visibility and the air was cloaked with a mysterious, haunting, grey mist.

The canoes crept along sleekly through the waters  and led by officials from the National Park. We spot crocodiles along the bank – in the same water as us! – only a boat between us and them!

 

Crocodiles in the water
Crocodiles basking along the bank and in the water alongside us!!!

As we dismount from the canoes on the far bank the Guide points out the footprint of  the  Royal Bengal Tiger.  It was an old footprint but enough to scare us all that we were now sharing the same land as these wild endangered species.

We go for a long walk, carefully picking each step along the way.  We study  this terrain for signs of animal life.  We stumble upon reindeer, monkeys and magnificent bird life.

The Guide shares his binoculars with us as we pick out magnificent birds in flight and nesting along the banks of the river.

Herding Buffalo
Herding Buffalo

We watch an old man with a herd  of water buffalo pick a path across the river.  You can tell, this is a man of nature, a man of much knowledge!

We go on a jeep safari and encounter a rhino up close and personal but that’s another story!

We visit Gharial Hatchery Farm where crocodiles  are raised before being released into the wild.

Later, we dine alfresco  in the grounds of the hotel on a balmy evening. We enjoy the  local dance with superb and graceful movement.  The music sways us in unison with the brilliance of their striking and vivid costume.

Life is good!

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Author: Donna McGee

Capturing and sharing the timeless beauty of the Irish landscape in paint !

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