India’s largest National Parks that you need to visit once
If you take pride in your country, go visit these national parks next
India’s first-ever national park was established in 1936 as Hailey National Park in Uttarakhand, which is now known as Jim Corbett National Park. And by 1970, India only had five national parks, but over years the country has grown to house 104 national parks covering an area of 43,716 km2 and 566 wildlife sanctuaries covering an area of 122420 km2.
In fact, the National parks in India are The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) category II protected areas. So out of the 104 national parks and 566 wildlife sanctuaries, 75 National Parks covering an area of 16,608 km2 and 218 sanctuaries covering an area of 16,829 km are proposed to be under the Protected Area Network Report. So here is a list of India’s largest National Parks for you to visit next.
Hemis National Park
Situated in Ladakh, it is globally famous for its snow leopards. This park is believed to have the highest density of snow leopards in any protected area in the world. It is also the only national park in India that is north of the Himalayas, the largest notified protected area in India. Apart from the snow leopards, the park is also home to various species of endangered mammals. It is spread over 4,400 km2 and is the largest national park in South Asia.
Desert National Park
Situated in Rajasthan, it covers an area of 3162 km² of which 1900 km² is in Jaisalmer and the remaining 1262 km² is in Barmer. The unique factor about this National Park is that it is an excellent example of the ecosystem of the Thar Desert. Despite this, you can also witness an abundance of birdlife, right from migratory to resident birds of the desert. Eagles – short-toed eagles, tawny eagles – harriers, falcons – laggar falcons – buzzards, kestrels, and vultures among others are common here. The Park also has a collection of animal and plant fossils that are 180 million years old. Some fossils of dinosaurs which are 60 million years old have been found in the area.
Similipal National Park
Situated in the Mayurbhanj district of Odisha, covering an area of 2,750 km2 the park is also a tiger reserve. The seventh-largest national park in India, it derives its name from the abundance of red silk cotton trees growing in the area. It is home to the Bengal tiger, Asian elephant, gaur, and chausingha, along with waterfalls like Joranda and Barehipani Falls. This protected area is part of the UNESCO World Network of Biosphere Reserves since 2009.
A few other National Parks of India that you should visit are Gangotri National Park, Namdapha National Park and Gir National Park among others.