There are several types of jungle trek in Chitwan National Park to choose from. To get the most from a jungle trek it's important to note the following:
- Time of year (hot monsoon or cooler dry winter)
- Length of jungle trek (1-5+ days)
- Level of fitness (walking)
- Budget (costs different treks)
Did you know?
Chitwan national Park is 932 square kilometers in size.
It was founded in 1972 and has over 700 types of wildlife living there. Including Bengalese tigers, one-horned rhinos, crocodiles, rhesus monkeys, deer and much more.
Do understand that many jungle safari agencies will offer slight variations on the following.
Jungle treks and walks are possible starting with half day jungle treks.
There are 3 Chitwan National park trekking zones. Each one goes deeper into the jungle and is further away than the previous. There is no price nor permit difference to any zone other than the time it takes to reach it.
For a larger map please see my map of chitwan to locate the different jungle trekking zones.
Half day treks: these treks usually involve a quick canoe ride followed by a trek to a zone where rhinos are hopefully located (zone 1).
Full day treks: early dawn start with a full canoe ride followed by a full day of jungle trekking in Zone one. There's a greater chance at rhino spotting here
2-3 day treks: canoe ride followed by a full day of trekking. Overnight is spent outside in ranger station or lodge in a community zone. There's a greater chance at spotting rhino and tigers here. You need to bring your own food/water (zones 1 & 2).
3-5 day treks: canoe ride followed by a daily treks and overnight stays in lodges or ranger stations. Best chance at spotting rhinos and tiger as you'll be trekking into much deeper areas. You must bring your own food and water or arrange for someone to bring it with you (zones 1, 2 & 3).
Jeep safaris: jeep safaris can be used to drive along an dirt road for a head start into a deeper jungle area for a better chance at wildlife spotting (zones 2 & 3).
Private jungle treks: you can avoid group tours by simple asking to go with only a guide. The advantage is you can go at your own pace. The disadvantage is that you'll need to bargain a little more to get a fair price.
The costs and fees of a jungle trek depend on who you do with. The duration and the type of trek. The following can be used as guideline.
Chitwan National Park fee = 2000 rupees per day (sometimes included in upper tier package tours).
Half day jungle safari trek costs 1500 rupees as part of a group (5 people) or about 2000 rupees as a single person.
Full day treks cost 3000 rupees as part of a group (5 people)
2-5 day jungle treks cost 3000-3500 rupees per day as part of a group (2+ people). This is the moderate tier that does not include a night in the jungle lodge.
Jeep safaris cost $170 per day for use of jeep and usually include basic accommodation plus food and guide services.
Package tour/agency: If you are booking online my advice is to look up as many agencies as possible.
Guesthouse: Budget travelers and those with a day to spare can either choose their own guesthouse services to arrange a jungle trek. Or use another guesthouse service - though it's bad practice to stay in one guesthouse and use another for a trek. Do look around though as prices will vary.
Depending on the time of year you go you'll need to consider these basics.
- Long-sleeved pants and shirt
- Light rain coat during monsoon season
- Hat for sun/rain
- Sun protection cream
- Insect repellant
- Food and water (agency guesthouse can arrange to make pre packed meals)
- Trekking boots or closed shoes with good grips to deal with mud and jungle terrain
- Trekking poles are not necessary but useful to beat back denser parts of the jungle
My advice is to bring extra water - include water purification tablets just in case you run out.
Do check out my full Chitwan Travel guide for more information or for those only interested in an elephant safari check out my elephant jungle safari guide. Alternatively, save time and download my guidebook to Chitwan.
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