The Sundarban National Park is a National Park, Tiger Reserve, and a Biosphere Reserve in West Bengal, India. It is portion of the Sundarban on the Ganges Delta and adjacent to the Sundarban Reserve Forest in Bangladesh. The delta is largely protected by mangrove forests and it is one of the biggest reserves for the Bengal tiger. It is also house to a variety of bird, reptile and invertebrate species which include the salt-water crocodile. The current Sundarban National Park was proclaimed as the core area of Sundarban Tiger Reserve in 1973 and a wildlife sanctuary in 1977. On 4 May 1984 it was announced a National Park.
Eco Geography, Rivers and Watercourses
There are seven primary rivers and numerous watercourses creating a network of routes at this estuarine delta. The Eco Geography of this place is completely reliant on the tidal impact of two flow tides and two ebb tides occurring within 24 hours with a tidal range of 3–5 m and up to 8 m in normal spring tide, inundating the entire of Sunderban in varying depths. This mysterious depression drives back the silts towards south and further east to form new islands.
The Sunderban mudflats are at the estuary and on the deltaic islands in which low speed of river and tidal current takes place. The flats are revealed in low tides and submerged in high tides thus being changed morphologically even in one tidal cycle. The internal parts of the mudflats are the right environment for mangroves.
Sundarban has obtained its identity from the Sundari Trees. It is the most beautiful range of tree that are found in this area, a special kind of Mangrove tree. The main function of this tree is that it creates surges that grow over from the ground and help in the breathing of the tree.
The Sundarbans forest is residence to more than 400 tigers. The royal Bengal tigers have a distinctive attribute of swimming in the saline waters and are famous for their man-eating behaviors. Visitors can see tigers on the river banks sunbathing between the months of November and February. Aside from the Bengal tiger, Fishing cats, Leopard cats, Macaques, Wild boar, Indian grey mongoose, Fox, Jungle cat, Flying fox, Pangolin, Chital, are also located in large quantity in the Sundarbans.
Some of the marine creatures found in the park are sawfish, butter fish, electric rays, silver carp, starfish, common carp, horseshoe crabs, prawn, shrimps, Gangetic dolphins, skipping frogs, common toads and tree frogs.
The Sundarbans National Park homes a large number of reptiles as well, which includes estuarine crocodiles, chameleons, monitor lizards, turtles, such as olive ridley, hawksbill, and green turtles and snakes which includes python, king cobra, rat snake, Russell’s viper, dog faced water snake, checkered keelback, and common krait.
The vulnerable types that lives within the Sundarbans are royal Bengal Tiger, Saltwater Crocodile, River Terrapin, Olive Ridley Turtle, Ganges River Dolphin, Hawksbill Turtle and Mangrove Horseshoe Crab.
The suggested Sundarbans Cetacean Diversity Protected Area consists of the coastal waters off Sundarbans that host important environments for endangered cetaceans, resident groups of Bryde’s whales, a newly rediscovered critical population of Irrawaddy dolphins, Ganges River Dolphins and Humpback Dolphins. Finless Porpoises, Indo Pacific Bottlenose Dolphins, Spinner Dolphins, and Pantropical Spotted Dolphins are also in this area.
Transportation for Sundarban National Park
Air Transportation: Sundarban National Park is 140 km far from Kolkata Airport.
Railway Transportation: The near by Railway station of Sundarban National Park is Canning Railway station which is 29 km far from the Gate way of Sundarban.
Road Transportation: Sundarban National Park is well link with Kolkata – Basanti High way.
How to Reach
By Air: Dum Dum (166kms), is the nearest airport at Kolkata.
By Rail: The nearest railhead is at Canning, 48 kms away.The nearest town is Gosaba, 50 kms away.
Sundarbans is accessible only by riverine waterways. From Kolkata there are suburban train to Canning and road transport to Namkhana, Raidighi, Sonakhali and Najat from where Motor launch services are available for Sundarbans.
By Road : Above mentioned embarkation points from Kolkata are: Namkhana (105 km), Sonakhali (100 km), Raidighi (76 km), Canning (64 km), Najat (92 km).
Waterways : Approximate time taken between various points are :
1. From Namkhana – Bhagabatpur Crocodile Project (2.5 hours) Sagar Island (2.5 hours) Jambudwip (3.5 hours)
2. From Sajnekhali – Sudhanyakhali (40 minutes) Buridabri (Tiger Project Area) (5 hours) Netidhopari (3.5 hours) Holiday Island (3 hours)
3. From Sonakhali – Gosaba (1 hour)
4. From Raidighi – Kalas (5 hours)
Time to Visit Sunderban National Park
September to May
Sunderban National Park Contact Details
C – 81C, Sector – 8, Noida India – 201301
Tel + 91- 120 – 4052611 – 98 (hunting lines)
Fax – + 91 – 120 – 4052699
(24 hrs helpline) + 91 -9212777225/921255107
Categories: Travel Attractions