About Gorumara National Park
Gorumara Park is the other one to have the Great Indian One horned Rhinoceros. Elephants and bison's are also found here.
Gorumara is situated beside the National Highway 31, which connects Siliguri and Guwahati. The Gorumara forest, declared a sanctuary in 1976, is also one of the recent introductions to the National Parks map of India. Starting with an area of 8.61 sq km, it now covers 79.85 sq. km. It is famous for being one of the last small pockets in eastern India with a natural population of the endangered one-horned rhinoceros. According to a recent census, there are 19 one-horned rhinos, more than 50 elephants, 300 bison and 25 leopards in this sanctuary, besides different species of deer and birds. With the Murti and Raidak rivers flowing nearby and the mountain ranges on the horizon, the pleasant natural setting of the Park is an added attraction.
You cannot afford to miss Gorumara on your trip to Dooars. Located on the flood plains of Murti and Jaldhaka rivers, the Gorumara National Park offers a large variety of flora and fauna. The grassland of Gorumara is famous for Asiatic one-horned rhino. In view of its great diversity of plants and animals it was delared a National Park in 1994 comprising a total area of 80 sq. km.
The forest area has come up as a tourist destination during the last decade. In recent years, there has been substantial increase in tourist arrival as well as infrastructure. Today the area around the forest has the largest concentration of tourist accommodation in Dooars. The number of Jungle safari options has also increased over the years.
While in Gorumara, tourists go inside the forests for Jungle safari. Sighting of wildlife is quite common. Elephants, Rhinos, Indian Bison (Gaur), Peacock, Deer are the most common sightings.
The forest safari is organised in special vehicles meant for the purpose. You must book your forest safari from the forest department and take an authorised guide along while visiting the watchtowers. Tresspassing is illegal and can be dengerous as well. The common forest safaris include the following:
The watchtower is named after a female elephant which was legendary for its caring nature. The elephant Jatraprasad saved lives of numerous orphaned baby elephants by acting as their surrogate mother. The Jatraprasad watchtower is also the most popular. The entry point is through the National Highway at the northern part of Gorumara National Park. You have to travel through the forest for about 6 kms before reaching the Gorumara forest bungalow. The Jatraprasad watchtower is 100 meters away from the Bungalow on the bank of Murti river. There are couple of salt leaks just below the watchtower making it an attractive place for sighting wildlife especially during early morning and late afternoon safaris. There is another watchtower in the vicinity known as Rhino point.
It is located at Kalipur eco village near Ramsai on the eastern fringe of Gorumara National Park. There are unique Bullok cart driven forest safari available here.
It is in inside the Gorumara forest between Ramsai and Lataguri.
If you drive from Murti River towards Khunia through the Chapramari forest, you will come across a road crossing. The road ahead goes towards Eastern Dooars and the road to your left will go to Khunia. If you take the forest road on your right and drive through for about a kilometre you will suddenly find yourself facing large open grassland and a watchtower in the middle of it. This is Chandrachur watchtower of Chapramari forest. There is a small pond and a salt leak. The open ground was originally the location of a forest village named Khunia Basti. The village was shifted outside the forest and the location slowly turned wild again as is evident from the games sighted here.
This is another watchtower inside the Chapramari forest. From Khunia more you have to drive about 4 kms towards the Jhalong-Bindu hills and then take a left road through the forests to reach Chapramari forest bungalow. The Watchtower is located just in front of the Bungalow.