Foreign visitors up

Nepalgunj, October 13

In the period of past five years from 2013 to 2018, as many as 62,125 foreign tourists visited Bardiya National Park, which is a famous tourism destination in Province 5.

As per data, 13,207 foreign visitors visited the national park in fiscal 2013-14, and 13,548 and 10,638 tourists visited the sanctuary the following two fiscals 2014-15 and 2015-16.

Similarly, data with the national park shows that 17,959 and 6,773 visitors from abroad visited it in fiscal 2016-17 and 2017-18 respectively, said the park’s chief conservation officer Ananath Baral. Bardiya National Park occupies around 968 square kilometres with its main office in Thakurdwara.

Originally set up as a hunting reserve back in 1967, the then reserve was expanded and named as Shahi Karnali Wildlife Reserve the next year. It was renamed as Shahi Bardiya Wildlife Reserve in 1982 and was expanded to take in the areas straddling the Babai River two years later.

It was in 1988 when it was declared Bardiya National Park. This sanctuary is famous for protected species of rhinos, ghariyal crocodiles, dolphins and other species of wildlife. Lately, more and more investment is happening in the hotel sector here.