She-Phoksundo National Park(3555 sq km)
Shey-Phoksundo National Park is situated in the trans-Himalayan region of north-west Nepal. It is Nepal’s largest National park.
With diverse terrain and altitude variation, the park spreads over Dolpa and Mugu districts and supports a broad range of wildlife and vegetation. Geographical landmarks of the park are the Himalayan peaks in the north and lake Phoksundo, in the southern region. Vegetation include pine, walnut, willow, oak, and cypress in the lower altitude and pine, spruce, juniper and birch at higher regions.
Berberis, wild rose and caragana are seen in alpine areas while the regions higher up are mostly arid with grass alpine meadows with barely any trees. The park contains 286 flora species of botanical importance. Animals found in the region are sheep, ghoral, musk deer, leopard, wild dog, marmot, weasel, mouse hare, rhesus and langur monkeys, Himalayan tahr, Himalayan black bear and jackals. In the upper region is seen the rare and endangered snow leopard. Over 200 species of birds including yellow-throated marten, Tibetan partridge, wood snipe, white-throated tit, wood accentor, and crimson-eared rose finch are found in the park. Other species of Himalayan griffon and lammergeyer. Apart from these, the park is home to 6 species of retiles and 29 species of butterfly.
Activities: Trekking, Mountaineering
Access: Fly to Dolpa’s Jufal airport from Nepalgunj and then a three day walk
Best season: Mar-May and Jun-Oct. (clear weather)