Facts and Data
Unesco World heritage since: 1985
Size of heritage: 39,100 ha
On a gentle slope in the foothills of the Himalayas, where wooded hills give way to alluvial grasslands and tropical forests, the Manas sanctuary is home to a great variety of wildlife, including many endangered species, such as the tiger, pygmy hog, Indian rhinoceros and Indian elephant.
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Manas Wildlife Sanctuary: A Haven for Biodiversity in Assam, India
Located in the northeastern state of Assam, India, the Manas Wildlife Sanctuary is a UNESCO World Heritage site renowned for its exceptional natural beauty and rich biodiversity. Spanning an area of approximately 950 square kilometers, the sanctuary is nestled in the foothills of the Eastern Himalayas and is home to a diverse range of flora and fauna.
The history of the Manas Wildlife Sanctuary dates back to 1928 when it was declared a game reserve by the British colonial government. It was later upgraded to a sanctuary in 1950 and eventually designated as a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1985. The sanctuary has faced numerous challenges over the years, including political unrest and poaching, which led to its inclusion on the List of World Heritage in Danger in 1992. However, concerted conservation efforts have since helped restore the sanctuary's ecological balance and ensure the protection of its unique wildlife.
Today, the Manas Wildlife Sanctuary stands as a shining example of successful conservation efforts. It is home to a remarkable array of wildlife, including several endangered and vulnerable species. The sanctuary is particularly renowned for its population of the majestic Bengal tiger, Indian elephant, and the rare golden langur, a primate found only in the region.
The sanctuary's diverse ecosystem comprises grasslands, wetlands, and dense forests, providing a habitat for over 60 species of mammals, 300 species of birds, and numerous reptiles, amphibians, and insects. The sanctuary's rivers, such as the Manas and Beki, also support a rich aquatic life, including the endangered Ganges river dolphin.
Efforts to protect and conserve the sanctuary have been multi-faceted. The government of Assam, in collaboration with various national and international organizations, has implemented strict anti-poaching measures and community-based conservation programs. These initiatives have not only helped curb poaching but also fostered a sense of ownership and responsibility among local communities towards the sanctuary's preservation.
Ecotourism has also played a significant role in the sanctuary's conservation. Visitors can explore the sanctuary through guided safaris, river cruises, and nature walks, providing them with an opportunity to witness the region's incredible biodiversity firsthand. The revenue generated from tourism has been instrumental in supporting conservation efforts and promoting sustainable development in the surrounding communities.
Despite the remarkable progress made, challenges remain. The sanctuary is still vulnerable to encroachment, illegal logging, and the impacts of climate change. However, the dedication and collaborative efforts of various stakeholders continue to ensure the sanctuary's protection and preservation for future generations.
The Manas Wildlife Sanctuary stands as a testament to the importance of biodiversity conservation and the positive outcomes that can be achieved through concerted efforts. Its recognition as a UNESCO World Heritage site serves as a reminder of the sanctuary's global significance and the need for its continued preservation.
Medium airport - 55 mi (89 km) Rupsi India Airport
Small airport - 80 mi (130 km) Shillong Airport
Medium airport - 92 mi (148 km) Cooch Behar Airport
Small airport - 100 mi (162 km) Tezpur Airport
Medium airport - 108 mi (175 km) Paro Airport
Medium airport - 109 mi (176 km) Lalmonirhat Airport
Small airport - 115 mi (185 km) Osmany International Airport
Medium airport - 132 mi (214 km) Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose International Airport
Large airport - 325 mi (523 km)
Bigger and popular cities in the wider vicinity are these:
- Samdrup Jongkhar
- Trashi Yangtse
- Wangdue Phodrang
These are some smaller cities that might be interesting. They are all rather close.