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Home :: National Parks in India :: Simlipal National Park

Simlipal National Park

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About Simlipal National Park
The Simlipal National Park in Orissa, the former hunting place for the Maharajas of Mayurbhanj, was established as a tiger reserve in 1956 and in 1972 it became a part of the Project Tiger Scheme followed by the attainment of the national park status in 1979. This national park and tiger reserve in northern Orissa is covered with the wide stretches of sal forests. The national park is home to twelve rivers and innumerable waterfalls and the native Santhal tribes of Orissa. The important and major rivers amongst these are Burhabalanga, Palpala Bandan, Kahairi and Deo.

The Park also holds tigers, leopards, elephants, sambhar, chital, chausingha and mouse deer, the tiniest member of the deer family. Simlipal National Park is known for the spectacular Mangesheri mountain range that spreads itself evenly throughout the national park. The tourists in the park can observe the herds of deer by the side of rivers most often. Accommodating around 100 tigers and 230 bird species, the national park is also a floral treasure with 501 plant species belonging to 102 families. The other important members of this wildlife sanctuary are the 82 species of the orchids, medicinal and aromatic plants.

Flora in the Simlipal National Park
The national park is home to 501 plant species belonging to 102 families. The 82 species of orchids comprise of the major floral attractions in the park. The Simlipal National Park has a mixed vegetation of Northern tropical semi-evergreen forests, Northern tropical moist deciduous forests, dry deciduous hill forests and high-level Sal forests. The medicinal and aromatic plants, the grasslands and the savannas provide the bread and butter to the indigenous tribes dwelling in the park premises.

Wildlife in Simlipal National Park
Besides the large number of Tigers, the national park and tiger reserve at Simlipal has Leopards, Sambhars, Langurs, Barking and Spotted Deer, Chitals, Chevrotains, Wild dog, Wild boar, Sloth bears, Monkeys, Hyenas, Porcupines, Gaur, Elephant and the 'Four-horned' antelope. The major bird species within the 230 bird species found in the park are: Red Jungle Fowl, Alexandrine Parakeet, Crested Serpent Eagle, Grey Hornbill, Indian Pied Hornbill, Malabar Pied Hornbill, Indian Trogon Hill Mynah, Peafowl, etc. The reptilian population in the Simlipal National Park includes snakes and turtles. The Mugger Crocodile has survived and flourished well in the park.

Best Time to Visit
The Simlipal National Park is generally open for visitors from November to June. The climate in summers is quite hot, the winters are cold and the monsoon is characterized by the medium or heavy rainfall.

How to Get There
By Air: Simlipal Tiger Reserve can be reached easily through three major airports at Jamshedpur, Bhubaneswar and Kolkata. From these cities one can hire a taxi/bus to reach the national park. After returning from the tiger reserve of Simlipal, the tourists can also board a flight way back home.

By Rail: There are three railheads near the Simlipal Tiger Reserve in Orissa. These are Jamshedpur, Bhubaneswar and Kolkata. A dense road and highway network runs through these three places. The tourists can thus proceed towards their desired destination by surface.

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