Chitwan definitely is one of the must-see places when in Nepal. It lies in the western part of Narayani Zone and is one of the country’s seventy five districts. The district headquarter of Chitwan is Narayangarh which is a commercial centre for the Terai belt. The beauty of Chitwan remains untouched and it is one of those places in the Terai region which has remained unfazed by the country’s political situation.

It takes 6 hours to reach Chitwan by road from the capital city, Kathmandu. By air, one can fly to Bharatpur airport and then head to Chitwan. The flight lasts about 35 minutes. Bharatpur is the seventh largest city of the country and also a commercial and educational centre.
The name Chitwan is comprised of two Sanskrit words ‘Chit’ which means heart and ‘Wan’ which means forest. Hence, Chitwan translates to the Heart of Forest or Jungle and it indeed is a place which boasts of rich flora and fauna. The district is the highest producer of mustard in the country. As one strolls around this naturally blissful place, one will get to see beautiful rice, maize and corn fields. Chitwan is also famous for floriculture, mushroom cultivation and bee keeping. Because of the good quality soil found in abundance, different types of vegetables are grown in the region from cauliflower to radish to potato. The view of different vegetable fields heightens Chitwan’s beauty.

For those of you who enjoy wildlife, Chitwan doesn’t disappoint. Home to Nepal’s first national park, the Royal Chitwan National Park, Chitwan especially attracts wild-life lovers and those seeking to experience a unique, new culture. At the national park, one will get to see different species of animals and enjoy Safari ride throughout the jungle. A particularly exciting activity that a visitor can participate in is bathing with elephants. This enjoyable activity allows one to get closer to wildlife.Most who have done this activity describes it as “an experience of a lifetime.”
A night at the park can be interesting for those who love experiencing new culture. The resort inside the park organizes ethnic dances which are local to the region. Also, visitors are treated to scrumptious meals and local hospitality.

Another place to visit in Chitwan is the Parsa Wildlife Reserve which is adjacent to the Royal Chitwan National Park. The reserve boasts of a diverse range of species which higher than any that can be found in the Indian subcontinent. Rare species of the reserve include Bengal Tiger, Gharial, and Asian Rhinoceros. Besides, these species, one will also see Leopards, Mugger crocodiles, Indian rock python and several species of deer.

A place that has lots to offer in terms of scenic beauty and wildlife, Chitwan is definitely a place to visit. The locals here are warm and friendly and welcome guests with open arms. The local culture is vivid as there are lots of ethnicities residing in Chitwan.

Whether you want to observe wildlife at a closer glance or enjoy local culture, Chitwan is the place to be.

Author: Ashish Rai


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