Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Baripada, Nov 1:
The Similipal Tiger Reserve (STR) and National Park in Odisha’s Mayurbhanj district today reopened for the tourists after the monsoon break of over four months.
The National Park was closed from June 16 ahead of the monsoon as the roads inside the STR get washed away during the rainy season. The world famous tiger reserve remains closed for tourists every year during monsoon and reopens in October or November.
The authorities decided to reopen the park after the withdrawal of monsoon and the weather conditions improved. Besides, repair of the roads, guest houses and other infrastructural facilities were taken care of during the break.
Tourist vehicles from Baripada will be allowed inside the national park through Pithabata check gate. Those coming from Jashipur will be allowed to enter into the STP through Jamuani check gate. At least 60 four-wheelers will be allowed entry to the park every day, an official said.
“A maximum of 25 vehicles from Baripada and 35 vehicles from Jashipur will be allowed inside the park between 7 am and 9 am every day”, said Ajit Kumar Satpathy, Deputy Director, Similipal National Park.
“As per rules, there will be a forest guide for each tourist vehicle which will be allowed to stay inside the park till 5 pm. Picnics are strictly prohibited inside the park. However, the tourists are allowed to bring dry or cooked food with them in containers, but no plastic bags will be allowed,” Satpathy added.
Notably, special arrangements have been made for tourists by the Forest department at Jamuani, Ramatirtha and Gudugudia for those interested for night stay. For this, prior booking had to be made at the Forest office at Similipal or online booking can be done through www.similipal.org.
Similipal Tiger Park has a rich wildlife and many picturesque places to visit including Chahala, Badheipani, Jaranda, Naana, Gududia and Jamuani, which attract hundreds of visitors every year.