One of the smallest national parks in the country at 29 sq.km., Keoladeo National Park packs a punch with its sheer diversity of avian species. It plays host to around 370 species of birds, roughly the number you are likely to encounter in the whole of United Kingdom. And supports 40,000 birds! Though its early claim to fame, the rare Siberian Crane has stopped visiting the park since 2002 and the park often faces water scarcity from time to time, it remains one of the jewels in India‚s wildlife crown. This birder‚s dream was declared a World Heritage Site in 1985!
Located in the primarily semi-arid region of eastern Rajasthan‚s Bharatpur district, the Park is a tract of lush, thriving system of freshwater marshes. Part of the upper Indo-Gangetic plains, the Park stands at the confluence of two rivers - Gambhir and Banganga. Earlier known as the Keoladeo ‚Ghana‚ (nullwhich means thick woods), it remains a patch of green in a largely dry region.
It is one of the most popular National Parks in India. Strategic location and diverse birdlife combine to make it ever attractive. Barely 180 km from the capital en route the Delhi-Agra-Jaipur circuit, it forms a part of many international tourist itineraries. And given its proximity to three major cities, domestic tourists too throng the place in large numbers.
Surface - Bharatpur lies around 180 kilometers (null.5 miles) from Delhi. Drive along the Delhi-Agra highway till Mathura. From the outskirts of Mathura, turn right on to a state highway. Although the distance thereafter is a mere 30 odd kilometer (null miles), factor in well over an hour to cover it due to the poor road condition.
Being on the route between Agra to Jaipur, Bharatpur is pretty well connected by road transport. The bus stand is towards the west of town, and if one is approaching the Park from the Fatehpur Sikri-Agra side, get off well before the town near the Park gate. Most hotels are around this place. By bus Agra takes about 2 hours, Fatehpur Sikri 1 hour, Jaipur about 5 hours and Mathura about an hour.
train - The Bharatpur railway station lies on the main Delhi-Mumbai line that goes via Kota and Vadodara. It is well connected from Delhi and cities further north such as Amritsar, Dehradun and Jammu. Dehradun Express, Firozpur-Mumbai Central Janta Express and Paschim Express are some of the trains that connect Bharatpur to destinations in North and West India. Frontier Mail and the Kota Janshatabdi are ideal for visitors from Delhi. The Agra-Jaipur line also passes via Bharatpur. Regular trains also run between Bharatpur and Sawai Madhopur (nullnear Ranthambhore).
The Park is about 7 kilometers (null.37 miles) south of the railway station.
Air - Agra is the closest airport at about 60 kilometers (null.5 miles) from town.
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