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Himachal Pradesh Senchal Wildlife Sanctuary
|Nearest Access||Darjeeling (16 Km)|
|Main Wildlife Found||barking deer, wild pig, Himalayan black bear, leopard|
|Coverage Area||14.9 sq mi|
|Temperatures||1.7 to 18.9 deg C|
|Languages||Hindi, Bengali and English|
|Best Season||February to June|
This sanctuary was established in the year of 1915 in Darjeeling district belonging to West Bengal state. This sanctuary is considered as one of the most ancient sanctuaries in India. It is spread over an area of 38.6 square km. The elevation varies from astonishing height of 1,500 to 2,600 m. Numerous exotic animals like squirrel, Himalayan flying, Assam macaque, rhesus monkey, jungle cat, leopard, Himalayan black bear, wild pig, barking deer etc are often seen here. This sanctuary also boasts of different species of birds. The two famous lakes of Senchal supply portable water to Darjeeling city.
Climate and the most suitable time to visit
During cold season, the temperature hovers around 1.7 degree centigrade to 8.4 degree centigrade. During hot season, the temperature lies between 14.4 degree centigrade and 18.9 degree centigrade. From the months of December to March, frost and snow fall in the areas, whose altitude is above 2000 m.
How to Get There
The closest railway station of Senchal wildlife sanctuary is New Jalpaiguri railway station, which is 70 km apart from Darjeeling city. This railway station is a principal junction which joins North Eastern India as well as Siliguri to metropolitan cities like Chennai, Guwahati, Bangalore, Pune, Kolkata, Mumbai and Delhi. The station runs on both narrow and broad gauges. The broad gauge is mainly utilized for regular rail traffic while narrow gauge is utilized for Darjeeling Himalayan railway.
As this sanctuary is a hill station, the road leading to Darjeeling is twisted, winding and long, where private buses, NBSTC buses and taxis ply frequently. The journey by bus on this route takes more time than what it should take due to rugged and steep hilly regions. Jeeps are better options as they prove cheaper and faster.
Darjeeling is joined to other town of West Bengal and Sikkim states by bus. Regular private buses and NBSTC buses ply from Siliguri to bus stand of Darjeeling daily.
Senchal wildlife sanctuary is a perfect combination of both man-made and natural jungles. The former comprises above 60% of the whole area. About 2,000m to 2,400m oaks cover the top canopy. The other pertinent species are Champ, Kawla, Katus, Kapasi etc. Many kinds of ferns and mating bamboo cover the undergrowth. More than 2,400 Rhododendrons and Ghoge Champ are seen here. Flora of sub-tropical along with Prunus nepaulensis, Alnus nepalensis, Pipli, Machilus edulis, Meliosma, Castanopsis are seen here. The foundation of first plantation was laid here in the year of 1892. The plantations are stuffed with Dhupi amalgamated with Utis, Kawla, Saur, Buk, Kapasi, Champ, Pipli, Aurpate etc. The strewn plantation of Hemlock and pure plantation belonging to Dhupi are also seen here.
Wild pigs and barking deer are spread over this sanctuary. Serow and goral occupy the untouched steep ridges and valleys while black bear belonging to Himalayas descend from higher altitudes and take rest during winter and autumn seasons. Leopard cat, jungle cat and leopard are seen in lower elevations. Apart from this Ant eater, flying squirrel, Indian civet, Assamese macaque and common Rhesus are also spotted here. The region of this sanctuary is very rich in bird life. Sunbirds, Babblers, Thrushes, Pigeons, Green, Imperial Pigeons, Hornbills, Fowl, Red jungle, Emerald Cuckoos, yellow naped wood pecker etc are spotted here.
There exists Rambi forest rest house inside Senchal wildlife sanctuary. Besides, there tourist lodges as well.
- While visiting this sanctuary, you should put on loose fitting clothes.
- You should avoid irritation of animals and smoking inside the park.
- You should not enjoy picnic or camping here as these activities are strictly prohibited.
- You should also take official guides with you as they will help you a lot.
- Do carry drinking water with you while visiting the park.
- Do not camp or picnic in the park as this is prohibited.