The Great Himalayan National Park is situated in the Kullu region of the Indian state of Himachal Pradesh. Surrounded by the towering peaks of the magnificent Himalayas on three sides, it is a perfect destination to go on a rendezvous with the wildlife of the place. The Greta Himalayan National Park is sprawled over an area of 754 Square Kilometres and is largest protected area in the state of Himachal Pradesh. Being located at an altitude of 1500 to 6000 metres, the park with its rich coniferous forests, snow-capped peaks, glaciers and alpine meadows covered with flowers offer the most panoramic view of the surroundings.

The Great Himalayan National Park (GHNP) was created in the year 1984 with the intentions to conserve the rich bio-diversity of the region. The park is officially called as the Jawaharlal Nehru Great Himalayan National Park and was constituted by amalgamating the Sainj Wildlife Sanctuary and Tirthan Wildlife Sanctuary. The breathtaking natural beauty and significant biological diversity of The Great Himalayan National Park helped it to attain the status of a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in the year 2014. The park is indeed an ultimate destination for adventure lovers.

 Attractions at the Park

The Great Himalayan National Park is home to a wide selection of vertebrate fauna that includes some endangered and extinct species. There is a total of 31 species of mammals, 9 amphibians, 17 molluscs, 3 species of reptiles, 11 kinds of annelids, 127 species of insects and over 181 different varieties of birds. Besides the flora of the place is also flourishing flora that includes lofty pines, junipers, cedars, oaks, alpine herbs, coniferous species, besides other varieties of vegetation.

Birding is a popular attraction at The Great Himalayan National Park that draws avid bird lovers from all corners of the world. The presence of rich avifauna is an indicator of the diverse ecosystem of the region. The park is home to both resident and migratory birds. Some of the rare birds sighted here are Western Tragopan and four species of pheasant. Bird lovers at The Great Himalayan National Park get the pleasure of sighting colourful birds like Raptors, Golden eagles, Lammergeiers and Himalayan Griffon Vultures amidst the mesmerising panorama.

There are also many trekking trails inside The Great Himalayan National Park that is the favourite activity for trekkers at an International level. The Pin-Parvati pass trek is the most popular trek that lasts for 7 days and takes you through alpine pastures, glacial areas and snowfields before crossing the Pin-Parvati Pass, located at 5319 metres.

There are three chief pilgrimage spots located inside the Great Himalayan National Park that is a must-visit for every tourist. The three sites are namely, the Raktisar, Srikhand Mahadev and Hanskund.

 Information about the Safari

The Great Himalayan National Park is a heaven for nature lovers. The park is home to endangered species of Snow Leopard and Nilgiri Tahr. Some of the other wild animals spotted inside the park are Brown Bear, Serow, Bharal, Musk Deer, Ghoral, Red Fox, Indian Pika and Flying Squirrel. The Great Himalayan National Park is located at a high altitude; therefore trekking is the only option to explore the park. However owing to the uneven terrains most part of the park remains unexplored. Trekkers need to carry their basic trekking equipment like sleeping bags and tents and need to be in good shape as the trekking trail is difficult.

 Duration:

The duration of the jungle safari varies from 1 day to 7 days depending on the trail chosen.

 Timings:

The Great Himalayan National Park can be visited from sunrise to sunset that is 6am to 6pm.

 Entry Pass & Permits:

Entry pass into the Great Himalayan National Park can be obtained after paying a nominal fee from the Range Officers stationed at Sainj, Banjar or Sairopa. The rates are lower for Indian nationals than foreigners. The authorities also provide a trained guide to accompany tourists.

 Dos and Don’ts Within the Park

  • Maintain silence within the park
  • Teasing, shouting or chasing wild animals is strictly prohibited
  • Do not disturb the animals
  • Hunting or fishing is not allowed inside the park
  • Do not carry firearms, fire crackers or weapons inside the park
  • Smoking or lighting fire is not allowed
  • Do not play loud music on radio or transistors
  • Do not litter or pollute the park
  • Pets are not allowed
 Things to Carry Along:
  • Trekking equipment
  • Light snacks and drinking water
  • Binoculars
  • Cameras with extra rolls and batteries
  • Mosquito repellents
  • Sunscreen
  • Sunglass and hat/cap
  • Light woollens as the weather condition is subject to changes

 Safety Measures to be Followed

Visitors must abide by the rules and regulations of the Great Himalayan National Park.

 Best Time to Visit the Park

The best time to visit The Great Himalayan National Park is during early summers or autumn, which is from the months of April to June and also September to November. The weather during this time is ideal to enjoy wildlife sighting and other excursions at the park. Right from November to April, the park receives heavy snowfall, thereby blocking the trails and the roads. Also the climate is severely cold making the place unfavourable.

 Nearby Destinations

Mantalai Lake is a superb destination that can be travelled from the Great Himalayan National Park. Located amidst the Parvati Range the lake is located at an altitude of 14000 feet. Mantalai Lake is a chosen destination for trekkers located in the lap of nature.

Tirthan Wildlife Sanctuary is located on the southern edge of The Great Himalayan National Park and is also declared as the Protected Area of the region. The park is spread over an area of 65 Square Kilometres and is devoid of any vegetation.

 Useful Information

  • The trekking area of The Great Himalayan National Park is only suitable for experienced trekkers, and general tourists must stick to exploring the forests area inside the park.
  • While visiting the park it is advisable to take a trained guide along who knows the whereabouts of the place.
  • Cameras and video cameras are allowed for additional charges.
  • Trekkers need to acquire a special permit from the Range Officer at GHNP.