Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary: Biodiversity Hotspot of Bhutan

 In Bhutan, General, Holidays, Travel

Explore the wilderness in the “Land of Thunder Dragon” by visiting the Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary with our Bhutan Trip Packages. Home to a diverse range of flora and fauna, Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary Bhutan boasts lush forests, cascading waterfalls, and meandering rivers that create a picturesque backdrop for exploration. 

The Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary has been added to the tentative list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites as this Wildlife Sanctuary in Bhutan is one of the two major winter roosting habitats for the globally endangered Black Necked Crane. It is also the only home to Bhutan’s state butterfly, i.e. Ludlow’s Bhutan Swallowtail. 

The Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary also houses some popular domestic pilgrim sites associated with Guru Rinpoche, the second Buddha. The sanctuary also holds significant cultural importance, with several traditional villages dotting its periphery, offering visitors a chance to immerse themselves in the local way of life.

If you want to spend some time in nature, indulge in birdwatching, take a break from city life, or explore the remote villages of Bhutan, Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary promises an unforgettable experience amidst the beauty of Bhutan’s natural wonders.

Geography of Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary 

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Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary is located in the northeastern region of Bhutan and covers a major area that has rich natural wonders. Nestled amidst the majestic Himalayas, the sanctuary shares its borders with Tibet to the North and Arunachal Pradesh, India, to the east. 

Established in 1995, this sanctuary spans over 1,520 square kilometers, offering a haven for diverse ecosystems to thrive which makes it a top place to visit in Bhutan. The Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary is characterized by its varied topography, ranging from lush valleys to rugged mountain terrain, with elevations ranging from 1,500 to 6,000 meters above sea level. Three major rivers meandering through this wildlife sanctuary are the Kulong Chhu in the east, Khoma Chhu in the west, and Sheri Chhu in the south.

Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary has a remarkable array of ecosystems, including subtropical forests in the lower valleys, temperate broadleaf forests in the mid-altitude regions, and alpine meadows and coniferous forests in the higher elevations. These diverse habitats support an abundance of flora and fauna, including rare and endangered species such as the black-necked crane, Himalayan black bear, red panda, and langur monkeys.

The sanctuary’s geographical location also plays a crucial role in its significance as a conservation area, serving as a vital corridor for wildlife migration between Bhutan and neighboring countries. This unique landscape, coupled with its strategic location and ecological importance, makes Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary Bhutan a treasure trove of natural wonders waiting to be explored.

How To Reach Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary?

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Reaching Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary from India is an adventure in itself, offering multiple transportation options to suit different preferences. Here are some best ways to reach this sanctuary-

  • By Airways:

The nearest airport to Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary is in Paro, Bhutan. Travelers from India can fly to Paro International Airport from major cities like Delhi, Kolkata, and Bagdogra. From Paro, visitors can take a domestic flight to Yongphulla Airport, which is the closest airport in Bhutan to the sanctuary. The flight from Paro to Yongphulla offers stunning aerial views of Bhutan’s picturesque landscapes.

  • By Roadways:

Travelers can also reach Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary by road from various entry points along the Bhutan-India border. From India, the nearest entry point to this sanctuary is Samdrup Jongkhar. Visitors can take a scenic drive through Bhutan’s well-maintained roads, passing through quaint villages and breathtaking mountain scenery. From the border towns, it’s advisable to hire a local taxi or arrange for a guided tour to reach the sanctuary.

  • By Railways:

Travelers can take a train to New Jalpaiguri (NJP) or Hasimara railway stations in West Bengal, India. From there, they can proceed to the nearby border towns of Phuentsholing or Samdrup Jongkhar by road. Alternatively, travelers can take a train to Guwahati in Assam and then proceed to Bhutan by road.

Regardless of the mode of transportation chosen, the journey to Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary promises unforgettable experiences amidst the pristine beauty of Bhutan’s natural landscapes.

Reasons To Visit Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary

1. Home To Rare & Endangered Species

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Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary is a sanctuary for diverse wildlife, including rare and endangered species. Among its inhabitants are the elusive black-necked crane, revered for its beauty and cultural significance, the majestic Himalayan black bear, the rare red panda, and langur monkeys swinging through the forest canopy. Birdwatchers will be delighted to spot a variety of avian species, including the endangered white-bellied heron and the vulnerable Ward’s trogon.

2. Wide Range Of Ecosystems 

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Spanning over a vast area, Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary encompasses a wide range of ecosystems, from subtropical forests in the lower valleys to temperate broadleaf forests in the mid-altitude regions, and alpine meadows and coniferous forests in the higher elevations. This diversity of habitats supports a rich array of flora and fauna, creating a haven for biodiversity conservation.

3. Production of Local Goods

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The sanctuary not only serves as a refuge for wildlife but also plays a vital role in sustaining local communities through the production of local goods. Villagers living on the fringes of the sanctuary engage in traditional practices such as farming, beekeeping, and handicrafts, producing goods like honey, textiles, and wooden crafts. Visitors have the opportunity to support these local livelihoods by purchasing authentic Bhutanese products directly from the communities.

4. Cultural and Religious Significance

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Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary holds significant cultural and religious importance for the people of Bhutan. The sanctuary is home to several sacred sites, including monasteries and temples nestled amidst the pristine natural surroundings. These sites serve as spiritual retreats for monks and pilgrims, adding a layer of cultural richness to the sanctuary’s landscape.

Things To Do In Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary

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Exploring Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary promises a wide range of exciting activities for nature enthusiasts and culture seekers alike. Here are a few best things to do in Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary Bhutan:

  1. Trekking – Embark on thrilling activities to do in Bhutan is trekking through the sanctuary’s lush forests and rugged mountain terrain. Follow scenic trails that wind through diverse ecosystems, offering breathtaking views of the surrounding landscapes.
  2. Bird Watching – Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary is a paradise for birdwatchers, boasting a rich diversity of avian species. Keep your binoculars handy as you spot rare and exotic birds, including the iconic black-necked crane and the vibrant Ward’s trogon.
  3. Wildlife Photography – Capture stunning images of the sanctuary’s resident wildlife in their natural habitat. From elusive red pandas to majestic Himalayan black bears, Bumdeling offers endless opportunities for wildlife photography in Bhutan.
  4. Shop Locally Produced Goods – Support local communities by shopping for authentic Bhutanese goods produced by villagers living on the sanctuary’s periphery. Browse through a variety of handmade crafts, textiles, and honey, and take home a piece of Bhutanese culture. Some of the top things to buy here are Dapa (wooden bowl), Desho (handmade paper) and Thangkas. 
  5. Camping – Experience the magic of sleeping under the stars amidst the natural beauty of the sanctuary while trekking in Bhutan. Set up camp at designated camping sites and immerse yourself in the sights and sounds of nature.
  6. Interact With The Locals – Engage with the friendly locals living in villages surrounding the sanctuary. Learn about their traditional way of life, participate in cultural activities, and savor delicious homemade Bhutanese cuisine.
  7. Visit Monasteries and Religious Sites –  Explore the sanctuary’s cultural heritage by visiting ancient monasteries and religious sites nestled amidst the pristine wilderness. Experience moments of serenity and spiritual reflection in these sacred places. The popular sites include Singye Dzong, Risumgonpa, Pamaling, Dechenphodrang, Gonpa Karp, Lhakhang karp and Sangay Lodrou.

With a plethora of activities ranging from trekking and birdwatching to cultural immersion and wildlife photography, Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary offers an unforgettable adventure for all who visit.

How can one arrange a visit to Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary?

To arrange a visit to Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary, travelers can contact local tour operators in Bhutan or travel agencies like WanderOn. These agencies can help arrange permits, transportation, and guided tours to ensure a smooth and enjoyable visit to the sanctuary. Additionally, visitors can explore various online resources and travel guides for information on accommodations, activities, and entry requirements.

Are there trekking opportunities within Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary?

Yes, Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary offers fantastic trekking opportunities for adventurers. Visitors can embark on thrilling trekking adventures through the sanctuary’s lush forests and rugged mountain terrain, exploring diverse ecosystems and enjoying breathtaking views along the way.

What wildlife can be found in Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary?

Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary is home to a diverse range of wildlife, including rare and exotic species. Visitors can spot the elusive black-necked crane, majestic Himalayan black bear, red panda, langur monkeys, and a variety of bird species, including the endangered white-bellied heron and Ward’s trogon.

What makes Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary significant?

Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary is significant for its rich biodiversity and cultural importance. It serves as a habitat for rare and endangered species like the black-necked crane and provides crucial corridors for wildlife migration. Additionally, the sanctuary is home to sacred sites and cultural landmarks, adding to its significance.

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