Planning a trip to a National Park? Need to escape Delhi? Check this beautiful but still not well known one!
The Great Himalayan National Park (GHNP) is located in the Kullu District of Himachal Pradesh, India. Initially constituted in 1984, GHNP was formally declared a National Park in 1999, covering an area of 754.4 sq kms. This area has many important wildlife species of Western Himalayas, like Musk deer, Brown bear, Goral, Thar, Leopard, Bharal, Serow, Monal, Kalij, Koklas, Cheer, Tragopan, Snow cock etc. If you get lucky, you can catch a glimpse of a snow leopard.
The unique ecological aspects of the Western Himalaya led to the creation of the Great Himalayan National Park (GHNP). Recently it has also been nominated for the prestigious UNESCO-approved World Heritage Site status. The features of the park include biodiversity, sparse human populations, inaccessibility, little tourism, and a local economy based on traditional livelihoods.
How to Reach
From Delhi, take a bus to Manali but ask the driver to drop you at Aut (12 hours in bus). Then take a taxi from the stand for Gushaini (1 hour – 1000rs). Treks start here or you can take another jeep to bring you upper.
Kullu (60 km away) is the nearest town. It is well connected by road, rail (Jogindernagar) and air (Bhuntar). From Kullu, drive down NH 21 to Aut, from where a road leads part-way to the park. You can also hire a vehicle from Kullu to Gushaini or Neuli. From there, walk.
The Best time to Visit
The best time to visit the park is April to June and September to November when the weather and visibility is good.
Special permits come for Rs. 10 (for Indians, for five days) or Rs. 500 (for foreigners) from the office of the Park Director at Shamsi. Charges for guides are extra. Visits to the GHNP are allowed only between sunrise and sunset.