In the list of national park and wildlife reserve areas in India one name which will always enjoy a unique position and will stand out for its rich biodiversity is the Sundarbans National Park. Located in West Bengal it is a part of the Ganges delta popularly known as the Sundarbans area. The Sundarbans reserve forest is adjacent in position to the Bangladesh border. The Delta region is rich in mangrove forest and is one of the most prominent Tiger Reserves of the nation. The area and the adjoining forests are truly esteemed for a huge population of The Royal Bengal Tiger. Apart from this magnificent beast the Sundarbans also boasts of a large variety of reptiles, birds, species of invertebrate, and a huge array of flora and plants. It was back in the year 1973 that Sundarbans was declared to be a major Tiger Reserve. In the year 1977 the area was further recognized as a wildlife sanctuary. In 1984 on 4th May it was declared as a national park. In the year 1987 this National Park was further esteemed as a UNESCO World Heritage site. The Sundarbans National Park is one of the leading tourist attractions of West Bengal. It attracts visitors not only from various parts of the state of West Bengal but the entire nation of India. Sundarban Park Built by It was in the year 1869 when the first forest management division was created to control and maintain the Sundarbans. In the year 1875 a considerable portion of the Mangrove infested Delta region was declared as a reserve forest under the Forest Act of 1865. The following year the rest of the forest was brought under the jurisdiction of the forest department. In the year 1879 a basic version of the forest department was created who had its headquarters in Khulna in Bangladesh. Between the period of 1893 and 1898 the first management plan for the forest area was written down. From the very beginning the Sundarbans happens to be a waterlogged Jungle is which had an abundance of tigers and other wild beasts. The Sundarbans had several river channels and creeks intersecting in various forest regions. This is exactly why water communication throughout the entire region was much in use. A major part of the Delta is located in modern Bangladesh. Sundarbans National Park Timings Being a Forest Reserve area, to plan a safari in the Sundarbans National Park timings is during the daylight hours. You can enjoy a boat ride or a jeep Safari inside the forest or the wildlife sanctuary between 6:30 a.m. in the morning to 6:30 p.m. in the evening. No Jeep or boat is allowed in the Reserve area after the sunset hours. Sunderban National Park Information The Sundarban National Park is situated in and around the latitude of 21 degree north. It is near 88 degree east longitude. The area has an average altitude of 7.5 meters above the sea level. There are 54 small islands which are intersected by the Ganges river distributaries. The area has an average hot and humid climate. The temperate ranges between 20 degree Celsius to 48 degree Celsius. The region receives a heavy rainfall and has a high humidity level. This is due to its close proximity to the Bay of Bengal. The monsoon period last quite long in the region where it begins in the month of June and ends with the close of September. Seven main rivers along with innumerable smaller distributaries criss-cross the region to form a really fertile Delta area. All the water bodies have a southwards flow course towards the direction of the sea. The flow of the tides and the ebbs determines the eco-geography of the region. The tidal action helps to deposit silt in the area that adds to the index and the fertility of the soil. Although the region has a unique series of biodiversity yet this biosphere reserve is under much threat due to excessive interference from human activities. A large number of environmental management and conservation plans have been devised and implemented to safeguard the unique coastal Ecology that spreads from territories in Bengal to that of Bangladesh. Sundarbans National Park Location & How to Reach Entry point for the Sundarbans National Park can be planned from various points. You can either take the Sonakhali via Canning route or can opt for the Bagnan route via Dhamakhali. If you wish to visit the south 24 Pargana forest division which lies on the western part of the Matla river via Basanti or Canning will be a more probable route. You can access entry permit from point like Sonakhali and Badhana. The nearest airport is 166 kilometres away in Dumdum Kolkata. The nearest railway station is at Canning which is about 48 kilometres away from the National Park. Gosaba happens to be the nearest town from the national park and is about 50 kilometres away. Being a riverine delta area Sundarbans are mainly accessible by the water ways. If you are coming down from Kolkata you need to take a suburban train to Canning. From here you need to take any road transport that will take you to Raidighi, Sonakhali and Najat. These are the points from where you need to take Motor launch services and avail the waterways to reach the main Sundarban. Sundarban Park Entrance Fee: Indian tourists need to pay an entry fee of Rs. 60 to visit the Sundarbans National Park. Foreigners must pay and entry fees of Rs. 200. If you are planning to take a boat ride you will have to pay an entry fee of Rs. 400. These boats will help you cover the entire zone in a single day. However if you wish to visit the interior Netidhopani zone you will have to pay an extra Rs. 800 as entry fee. Further you need an authorized guide for every boat which will again cost you Rs. 400. as a foreign tourist you will have to pay Rs. 700 for the guide. As a foreign tourist you will have to obtain a permit to enter the national park for which you need to provide your passport as identification. The forest department of Sajnekhali is the place where you can obtain this permit. Sunderban Sanctuary & Important Structures Sundarban area got its name from the abundance of Sundari tree in the region. This is a kind of special mangrove tree which thrives in this area. The tree has specially formed roots called pneumatophores which can emerge above the level of the ground and help in exchange of gases for the process of respiration. During the rainy season when the entire area is filled up with flooded water these roots that can arise above the level of the ground and the water and can help in the process of plant respiration. The mangrove forests are a major attraction of the Sundarban National Park. The Sundarbans are mainly reputed as the home of the famous Royal Bengal Tiger. It is said that the area has a population of nearly 400 tigers. These tigers over time seem to have developed a unique characteristic of being able to swim in the saline water. This is one of the reasons that foster the tendency of man eating among these beasts. Apart from Bengal Tiger you can also see other big cats like leopards, fishing cats, jungle cat in the forest region. Sundarban are also famous for wild beasts like Indian grey mongoose, Wild boar, flying Fox, etc. Best time to visit sundarbans national park The best time to visit the Sundarban National Park is between the months of October and March. This is the time when the area enjoys a really lovely climate with moderate temperatures that ranges between 10 to 30 degrees. This is the best time when you can explore the jungle, enjoy jeep safari, enjoy boat ride across the river Rhine delta and experience the basic wild spirit of the place. The summer months from April to June tend to be really hot and humid and are so not a comfortable time for the tourist from other parts of the country. Once again the monsoon months from July to September brings in extremely heavy rainfall. The region often gets flooded and boat safari can turn out to be a rather risky affair. Sundarban Tiger Reserve History The history of Sundarban can be traced back to the 200 and 300 AD. Chand Saudagar had built a city the ruins of which was found near Baghmara forest block. During the Mughal rule the emperors of the dynasty leased the Sundarban forest to the nearby people. From the early times the Jungle areas of Sundarban were the centre of much folklore that grew up around hiding criminals and who took shelter in the mangrove forests. There have been legendary tales where the tigers of the area had attacked and killed innumerable humans of the place. The buildings which were built around the area fell into the hands of the salt smugglers, Portuguese pirates and the 16th and 17th century dacoits. This fact can be easily operated for me from the in numerable found in Netidhopani. Sunderban National Park Location & Attractions Nearby West Bengal is a state which has innumerable points of tourist attraction. You must visit the culturally rich junction of Shantiniketan. The beautiful locations of Murshidabad with its rich historical background are yet again a popular tourist attraction in West Bengal. The state capital of Kolkata is once again a major attraction which offers a perfect construction of ancient heritage and Modern contemporary. 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