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Nepal Shukla Phanta Wildlife Reserve was managed as a hunting reserve beginning in 1969.

Nepal Shukla Phanta Wildlife Reserve was managed as a hunting reserve beginning in 1969.

Shukla Phanta Wildlife Reserve

Nepal Shukla Phanta Wildlife Reserve was managed as a hunting reserve beginning in 1969 and was gazetted as a Wildlife Reserve in 1976, covering an area of 305 sq. km. Shukla Phanta Wildlife Reserve lies in the extreme south-western section of Nepal Terai in Kanchanpur District. The reserve shares a common boundary with the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh in the south and west which is formed by the Mahakali (Sarda), River, a major tributary of the Ganges. Shukla Phanta jungle safari is bordered on the eastern side by the Chaudhary River and to the north by a forest belt and cultivations. A total of 24 mammal species was recorded by Schaff (1978b), and a total of 350 species of birds of which 180 are breeding species (Inskipp, 1989), Bhatt and Shrestha (1977) provide an annotated list of 14 species of fish, Schaaf (1978b) recorded 10 species of Ectoparasites and biting flies.

Although the area of the Reserve is small, it supports a wide range of biodiversity which is nationally and globally important. The vegetation types primarily include Sal forest, and Sal savanna, which is part of the continuum between climax forest and grassland that is maintained by fire and floods. The reserve supports the largest population of Bengal Florican Houbaropsis Bengalensis (E) and swamp deer Cervus Duvauceli (E).

The area has a tropical monsoon climate with four different seasons: winter, spring, summer, and monsoon. The months of December and January are fairly cold and misty with occasional frost. The mean monthly minimum temperature varies from 10 to 12 o C in winter, gradually rising to 17oc in the spring and 26 in the summer. Over 90% of the annual precipitation fall during the monsoon between June and September. Mean maximum temperatures are 40-42°C in summer (April-May) when hot westerly winds of up to 160km per 4 hours have been recorded. (Balson, 1976). In February and March, the maximum temperature rises from 22o to 25ocC. The relative humidity remains fairly high throughout the year except in the dry months of the pre-monsoon period.

How to get there
The reserve is accessible by road as well as by air. The reserve will be easily accessible by road from any part of Nepal with the completion of the far-western sector of the East-West Highway. There is once a week flight from Kathmandu to Dhangadhi which is 51 km far from the park headquarters. There is a regular public bus service from Dhangadhi to Mahendranagar taking 3 hours drive and the reserve headquarters is 8 km southwest of Mahendranagar. The reserve can be reached by East-west Highway through Nepalgunj-Dhangadhi-Mahendranagar.

Some 54.7% of the reserve is covered by mixed deciduous forest, grassland, and marsh in the southwest where soils are of recent alluvium. The rest is moist deciduous forest and savanna, supported by the better-drained soils on higher terrain in the northeast (Balson, 1976).

The main vegetation types distinguished by Schaaf (1978a, 1978b) are Sal Shorea Robusta forest; Sal savanna, which is part of a continuum between climax forest and grassland that is maintained by fire or floods; mixed deciduous forest, which is patchily distributed among the more extensive grasslands in the south-west (Sal is absent); grasslands, which may be dry (locally known as Phantas) or wet in the case of areas inundated during the monsoon; lowland savanna, which occurs on the fringes of all main grasslands and covers most of Karaiya Phanta; Khair-Sissoo forest, dominated by Acacia Catechu and Dalbergia Sissoo and forming an early succession in river areas; and marsh, in which tall dense grasses are predominant (e.g. Phragmites Karka, Saccharum spontaneum, and Sclerostachya Fusca).

Entry Fee Per Person Per Day:
For Nepalese Nationals, Rs. 20/-
For SAARC Nationals, Rs. 200/-
For Other Foreign Nationals, Rs. 500/-
(Note: Entrance fee not required for children under 10 years)

Shukla Phanta Wildlife Reserve / 03 Days - Outline Itinerary

Day 01: Flight from Kathmandu to Nepalgunj.

Day 02: Full day wildlife activities inside reserve including elephant safari, jungle walk, culture program.

Day 03: After breakfast back to Nepalgunj airport to Kathmandu.

Shukla Phanta Wildlife Reserve / 03 Days - Detail Itinerary

Day 01: Flight from Kathmandu to Nepalgunj. 
Upon your arrival, our staff from the Lodge will receive you. You will then be transferred to Lodge where you will be offered refreshments & be given a briefing about the programs.
15.00 Village tour to a nearby ethnic Tharu Village where you will learn more about the life and lifestyle of the Tharus. 
20.0 Dinner

Day 02: Full Day Wildlife Activities inside reserve including elephant safari, jungle walk, culture program.
06.00 Wake-up call
06.30 Breakfast 
07.30 Elephant Ride. An excellent opportunity to see Asian Elephant, Great One Horn Rhinoceros, Spotted Deer or Chital, Hog Deer, Barking Deer, Samber, Swamp Deer or Barasingha, Nilgai, or Bull, Black Buck, Wild Boar, Royal Bengal Tiger, Leopard, Wild Dog, Golden Jackal, Striped Hyena. You will also encounter many other smaller mammals that have made Bardia their home. Visit Visitor Center, Crocodile Breeding Center, and Tharu Cultural Museum.
13.00 Lunch 
15.00 Jungle Walk. An excellent opportunity to see the wild animals, small mammals, and birds, and waits in the Tower (Machan) to have the wild sightseeing, accompanied by our experienced naturalists, and wildlife tracker. Excellent photographic opportunities are plentiful.
19.00 Tharu Culture dance. 
20.00 Dinner.

Day 03: After breakfast back to Nepalgunj airport to Kathmandu.
06.00 Wake-up call. 
06.30 Breakfast. 
07.00 Visit Karnali River for Dolphin sightseeing.
12.30 Lunch.
13.30 Drive to Nepalgunj airport to catch up on your flight to Kathmandu.

Cost Include

  • Airport pick-up drop service
  • All land transportation as per itinerary
  • 4 night's hotel accommodation at Kathmandu in a deluxe hotel on a BB basis
  • Guest house/tented accommodation according to given itinerary (sharing in 2-bedroom) and 3 meals (Breakfast, lunch, Dinner) during the trek
  • Domestic air ticket
  • Domestic airport Tax
  • "Farewell dinner" before the day of your departure from Nepal.
  • An experienced English-speaking trek leader (trekking guide), assistant trek leader (4 trekkers: 1 assistant guide), and Sherpa porters to carry luggage (2 trekkers: 1 porter) including their salary, insurance, equipment, flight, food, and lodging.
  • Down jacket, for a seasonal sleeping bag, Mountain Guide treks & Expedition kit bag/duffel bag, trekking map (down jacket and sleeping bag are to be returned after trip completion)
  • All necessary paperwork and permits (National park permit, TIMS )
  • A comprehensive medical kit.

Cost Exclude

  • Nepal entree visa: you can get a visa easily upon your arrival at Tribhuwan International airport in Kathmandu (a multiple-entry tourist visa good for 30 days can be obtained by Paying US $ 40 or equivalent foreign currency. Similarly, multiple-entry tourist visas for 90 days can be obtained by paying US $ 100. Please bring 2 copies of passport-size photos.)
  • International airfare
  • Lunch and evening meals in Kathmandu (and also in the case of early return from the mountain than the scheduled itinerary)
  • Extra night accommodation in Kathmandu because of early arrival, late departure, and early return from the mountain(due to any reason) than the scheduled itinerary
  • Travel and rescue insurance
  • Personal expenses (phone calls, laundry, bar bills, battery recharge, water bottle, hot shower during the trekking, etc.)
  • Personal trekking equipment & clothing
  • Any donation and monuments entrance fee
  • Tips for guides and porters

Note:- The cost includes and excludes section may give you a better idea of how the trip is organized. Once you let us know the number of interested travelers and the departure date we would get back to you with the actual cost for the trip.

Trip Photos

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