Balphakram National Park

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Balpakram National Park
Balpakram Canyon.jpg
Balpakram Canyon
LocationSouth Garo Hills of Meghalaya
Nearest cityBaghmara
Coordinates25°25′N 90°52′E / 25.417°N 90.867°E / 25.417; 90.867Coordinates: 25°25′N 90°52′E / 25.417°N 90.867°E / 25.417; 90.867
Area220 km2 (85 sq mi)
Established27 Dec 1987
Governing bodyGovernment of India, Government of Meghalaya

Balpakram National Park is a national park at about 3000ft. above sea level, near the Garo Hills in Meghalaya, India. Balpakram is located between latitudes 25°20' N and 25°30' N, and longitudes 90°45' E to 91° E . The Balpakram National Park is located to the extreme South of Garo Hills, Meghalaya at a distance of 62 km from Baghmara, the district headquarters of South Garo Hills and 167 km from nearest major townTura. This pocket of pristine beauty named Balpakram National Park is also close to the international boundary of Bangladesh. It is often compared to the Grand Canyon National Park of United States. It is often referred to as the "abode of perpetual winds" as well as the "land of spirits. It is believed that here, the spirits of the dead dwell temporarily before embarking on the final journey. Balpakram is sacred to the Garos as the abode of the dead spirits."[citation needed] It is the home of the barking deer and the golden cat. Commonly seen animals include wild water buffalo, red panda, elephant and eight species of cats including tiger and marbled cat. Balpakram, land of the eternal wind, according to Garo myth, has a very beautiful landscape and one of the best Canyon around the region. It is famous for unique land formations with surround the mythological stories of the Garos. Declared a national park by the Government of India, it is now a protected place and permission has to be sought from the wildlife authorities before entering. It has some unique plants species including the ones mentioned and the corridor for the Indian elephant. Balpakram was inaugurated as a National Park on 27th December 1987.

UNESCO tentative list[edit]

The Central govenment of India has nominated the Garo Hills Conservation Area (GHCA), straddling South and West Garo Hills district in Meghalaya, for a World Heritage Site, which includes Balpakram National Park.[1][2] It has been listed in UNESCO World Heritage tentative list.[3]

Flora and fauna[edit]

Balpakram National Park, Meghalaya is one of the national parks in India. It is home to wide species of plants and animals and is located in the midst of the Garo Hills in Meghalaya. The Balpakram National Park, Meghalaya attracts both tourists and nature lovers from all over the world. The national park is full of sprawling vegetation consisting of sub tropical and deciduous trees. There is a wide range of flora and fauna in the Balpakram National Park. The reserve consists of tropical vegetation which is an ideal habitat for various species of animals like elephants, deer and so on. The park is famous for the golden cat and the barking deer. There are wide species of mammals, reptiles and birds in the forest. Other animals include Wild water buffalo, Red panda, Elephant and eight species of cats including Tiger and Marbled cat.[4] Wide species of baboons and monkeys are also found in the forest. The rivers and lakes in the wildlife reserve are home to various species of birds. It is famous for pitcher plant and many medicinal plants called 'Dik.ke'.

Myth of Balpakram[edit]

Balpakram.jpg

Balpakram has many mysterious and unnatural phenomena that cannot be satisfactorily explained by modern science and logic.

Matchu boldak karam

On the way side there is a hard schimawallichi tree that has mysteriously acquired a depression on its trunk as if weather and worn by constant tethering of animals on its trunk . The belief is that the spirit on their way to their abode of the dead take rest here and tether the animals killed on their funeral. Surprisingly a few years ago, when one tree falls due to strong winds, another tree close to it started getting the same symptoms.

  • Matchru anti
  • Chidimmak
  • Dikki ni Ring
  • Mebit Mebang
  • Bandi ni Jallang
  • Goera Rongjaleng
  • Mite Rongkol

Visitor information[edit]

The best time to come to Balpakram National Park, Meghalaya is from November to May when the weather is pleasant with no rainfall. It is a time to watch animals as they come to drink water in the lakes and rivers. The Balpakram National Park in Meghalaya can be easily reached. It is far from the capital city of Shillong but it is well connected by roadways.The best travel is from Guwahati airport to Tura to Baghmara. Regular motor service is scarce and only 1 bus ply on this road. Travellers can hire an SUV from Tura or Williamnagar. Tourist guides are also available from Tura and Williamnagar. Permission is required to enter the Park. Accommodation are also available but prior booking is necessary. Entry fees are also required to be paid at the BNP gate.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Garo hills in queue for world heritage tag". The Telegraph India. 22 Sep 2018. Retrieved 12 Nov 2018.
  2. ^ "UNESCO World Heritage Site opportunity for Garo Hills Conservation Area". The Shillong Times. 23 Sep 2018. Retrieved 12 Nov 2018.
  3. ^ "Garo Hills Conservation Area (GHCA)". UNESCO World Heritage Centre. Retrieved 12 Nov 2018.
  4. ^ "Wild life in Meghalaya state". Meghalaya state tourism department. Retrieved 12 Nov 2018.

External links[edit]