Thursday, February 4, 2010

Meghauli Mahotsab To Promote Village Tourism

Thousands of spectators poured at the Meghauli Tourism Mahotsab - 2066 that has been jointly organized by Meghauli Tourism Development Committee and Meghauli Village Development Committee from January 29 to February 4, 2010 to promote village tourism in Meghauli.

The fourth edition of Mahotsab, organized at the southern corner of the airfield, accommodated many business stalls, restaurants, children park, mini zoo, and grand stage where cultural and entertainment programs were organized daily inviting local and national artists.

Generally this mega event is organized every two years but it is not consistent. Mayaram Chaudhary, coordinator of Meghauli Tourism Mahotsab said that previous Mahotsabs were organized in B.S. 2057, 2060 and 2062 at the same venue.

(Python in mini zoo)
The special focus of this Mahotsab is to develop and promote village tourism in Meghauli area. Mayaram Chaudhary, said that home stay facilities have been managed in all the wards within Meghauli VDC by Meghauli Tourism Development Committee. Visitors receive warm hospitality from the family which extend their good services providing local cuisines in their traditional bhansaghar (Nepali kitchen). Visitors can enjoy first hand experiences of traditional cultures, customs and etiquette of Tharu, Kumal and Darai ethnic communities.

As Meghauli is located at the vicinity of the Chitwan National Park, visitors can enjoy the jungle activities to observe rich diversity of birds and wildlife within the park and the community forests. Not only inside the park, there are abundance of wildlife in some 2000 hectares of community forests within the bufferzone of the national park. As Meghauli village is bordered by Rapti river in the south and Narayani river in the west, there are many ox-bow lakes like Nanda Bhauju Tal and Kamal Tal (inside park) and wetland areas that is suitable habitats for water birds, mammals like rhino, tiger and gaur, and reptiles. The grassland area near Bhimle Check Post and Sukibhar Check Post is especially good habitat for Bengal Florican (Houbaropsis bengalensis), a protected bird and globally threatened species. Most of the areas in the park are not much explored or exploited, so these prime habitats are considered biodiversity hotspot.

(Tharu traditional art at the wall of the house)
Hotels, host families and nature guides will organize elephant safari, jungle walk, bird watching, canoeing in the park and bufferzone forests. Depending upon the interest of the visitors, some other programs like village visit programs (to explore the rich culture of Tharu, Kumal and Darai indigenous people), traditional cultural dances and sunset viewing will be organized. Your participation in the activities provides the opportunity for local people to sell their local products and the services that helps in economic development.

(Kumal museum in Mahotsab)
Three tourist hotels: Rhino Resort, Chittal Lodge and Golaghat Wildlife Resort are located outside the Chitwan National Park. Tiger Tops Jungle Lodge has been located inside the park. Tiger Tops had been closed by Department of National Park and Wildlife Conservation as its terms to operate inside the park was over. But, Nepal Government has recently extended the agreement up to 3 years to run this hotel again. Physical structures and facilities in the core habitats would obvious have adverse impacts to the wildlife. Irony is that businessmen, bureaucrats and politicians always find a loophole in the policies mocking the rules, regulations and the constitution. The interesting fact is that most of these inside 'big' hotels have already built the lodgings with all the facilities outside the park, from where they can operate tourism activities inside the park.

(Meghauli airport and Mahotsab venue)
Meghauli is some 25 km south-west from Bharatpur, the district headquarters. There is frequent bus services from Narayanghat and Chaubiskothi to Meghauli. But, the condition of road is not good as the paved road has been crumbled in many places. But, anyone get pleasure visiting the beautiful Meghauli village with its rich natural and cultural diversities.

1 comment:

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