Top Ten Asian National Parks

Top Ten Asian National Parks

Thungyai-Huai Kha Khaeng Wildlife Sanctuaries8Gunung Mulu National Park4

  1. Thungyai-Huai Kha Khaeng Wildlife Sanctuaries, Thailand
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           The Wildlife Sanctuary Thung Yai Naresuan is a protected area in Thailand in the northern part of Kanchanaburi province and the southern part of Tak province. It was created as a Wildlife Sanctuary on April 24th, 1974 and was declared a World Heritage Site by the UNESCO in 1991 together with the adjoining Huai Kha Khaeng Wildlife Sanctuary.
    Links: Top Ten Thai Attractions, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thungyai_Naresuan_Wildlife_Sanctuary,
  2. Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park, Vietnam
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    Phong Nha – Ke Bang is a national park in the Bố Trạch and Minh Hóa districts of central Quang Binh Province, in north-central Vietnam, about 500 km south of the nation’s capital, Hanoi. The park borders the Hin Namno Nature Reserve in the province of Khammouan, Laos by the west, 42 km east of South China Sea from its borderline point. Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park is situated in a limestone zone of 2,000 square km in Vietnamese territory and borders another limestone zone of 2,000 square km of Hin Namno in Laotian territory. The core zone of this national park covers 857.54 square km and a buffer zone of 1,954 square km. The park was created to protect one of the world’s two largest karst regions with 300 caves and grottoes and also protects the ecosystem of limestone forest of the Annamite Range region in north central coast of Vietnam. Phong Nha-Ke Bang area is noted for its cave and grotto systems as it is composed of 300 caves and grottos with a total length of about 70 km, of which only 20 have been surveyed by Vietnamese and British scientists; 17 of these are in located in the Phong Nha area and three in the Ke Bang area. After April 2009, total length of caves and grottoes are 126 km. Before discovery of Son Doong Cave, Phong Nha held several world cave records, as it has the longest underground river, as well as the largest caverns and passageways. The park derives it name from Phong Nha cave, the most beautiful of all, containing many fascinating rock formations, and Ke Bang forest. The plateau on which the park is situated is probably one of the finest and most distinctive examples of a complex karst landform in Southeast Asia. In April 2009, the world’s largest cave Son Doong Cave, was discovered by a team of British cave explorers of British Caving Association.
    Links: Top Ten Vietnamese Attractions, Top Ten Caves, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phong_Nha-Ke_Bang_National_Park,
  3. Gunung Mulu National Park, Malaysia
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    Gunung Mulu National Park near Miri, Sarawak, Malaysian Borneo that encompasses incredible caves and karst formations in a mountainous equatorial rainforest setting. The park is famous for its caves and the expeditions that have been mounted to explore them and their surrounding rainforest, most notably the Royal Geographical Society Expedition of 1977-1978, which saw over 100 scientists in the field for 15 months. This initiated a series of over 20 expeditions now drawn together as the Mulu Caves Project. The national park is named after Mount Mulu, the 2nd highest mountain in Sarawak.
    Links: Top Ten Malaysian Attractions, Top Ten Caves, Top Ten Mountains, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gunung_Mulu_National_Park,
  4. Kinabalu National Park, Malaysia
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           Kinabalu National Park or Taman Negara Kinabalu in Malay, is one of the most important biological sites in the world with more than 4,500 species of flora and fauna, including 326 bird and around 100 mammal species. Located on the west coast of Sabah, east Malaysia on the island of Borneo; it covers an area of 754 square km surrounding Mount Kinabalu, which at 4,095.2 m, is the highest mountain on the island of Borneo. The park is one of the most popular tourist spots in Sabah and Malaysia in general. In 2004, more than 415,360 visitors and 43,430 climbers visited the Park.
    Links: Top Ten Malaysian Attractions, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kinabalu_Park, 
  5. Western Ghats, India
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    The Western Ghats or the Sahyādri constitute a mountain range along the western side of India, which is one of the eight “hottest hotspots” of biological diversity in the world. It is sometimes called the Great Escarpment of India. The range runs north to south along the western edge of the Deccan Plateau, and separates the plateau from a narrow coastal plain, called Konkan, along the Arabian Sea. A total of 39 properties including national parks, wildlife sanctuaries and reserve forests were designated as world heritage sites, 20 in Kerala, 10 in Karnataka, 5 in Tamil Nadu and 4 in Maharashtra. The range starts near the border of Gujarat and Maharashtra, south of the Tapti river, and runs approximately 1,600 km (990 mi) through the states of Maharashtra, Goa, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Kerala ending at Kanyakumari, at the southern tip of India. These hills cover 160,000 km2 (62,000 sq mi) and form the catchment area for complex riverine drainage systems that drain almost 40% of India. The Western Ghats block rainfall to the Deccan Plateau. The area is one of the world’s ten “Hottest biodiversity hotspots” and has over 5,000 species of flowering plants, 139 mammal species, 508 bird species and 179 amphibian species; it is likely that many undiscovered species live in the Western Ghats. At least 325 globally threatened species occur in the Western Ghats.
    Links: Top Ten Indian Attractions, Top 100 Birds, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Western_Ghats,
  6. Sagarmatha National Park, Nepal
    Sagarmatha National ParkSagarmatha National Park1Sagarmatha National Park2Sagarmatha National Park3Sagarmatha National Park4Sagarmatha National Park5Sagarmatha National Park6
    Sagarmāthā National Park is a protected area in the Himalayas of eastern Nepal containing the southern half of Mount Everest. The park was created on July 19, 1976 and was inscribed as a Natural World Heritage Site in 1979. Sagarmāthā is a Sanskrit word, from sagar, meaning “sky” and māthā, meaning “forehead” or “head,” and is the modern Nepali name for Mount Everest. The park encompasses an area of 1,148 square km (443 square mi) in the Solukhumbu District and ranges in elevation from 2,845 m (9,334 ft) at Jorsalle to 8,848 m (29,029 ft) at the summit of Mount Everest. Barren land above 5,000 m (16,000 ft) comprises 69% of the park while 28% is grazing land and the remaining 3% is forested. Most of the park area is very rugged and steep, with its terrain cut by deep rivers and glaciers. Unlike other parks, this park can be divided into four climate zones because of the rising altitude. The climatic zones include a forested lower zone, a zone of alpine scrub, the upper alpine zone which includes upper limit of vegetation growth, and the Arctic zone where no plants can grow. The types of plants and animals that are found in the park depend on the altitude. The park contains the upper watershed of the Dudh Kosi river basin system. The park’s visitor center is located at the top of a hill in Namche Bazaar, also where a company of the Nepal Army is stationed for protecting the park. The park’s southern entrance is a few hundred meters north of Monzo at 2,835 m (9,301 ft), a one day hike from Lukla.
    Links: Top Ten Nepalese Attractions, Top Ten Big Cats, Top 100 Birdshttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sagarmatha_National_Park,
  7. Komodo National Park, Indonesia

    The Komodo National Park is a national park in Indonesia located within the Lesser Sunda Islands in the border region between the provinces of East Nusa Tenggara and West Nusa Tenggara. The park includes the three larger islands Komodo, Padar and Rincah, and 26 smaller ones, with a total area of 1,733 km² (603 km² of it land). The national park was founded in 1980 in order to protect the Komodo dragon, the world’s largest lizard. Later it was dedicated to protecting other species.
    Links: Top Ten Indonesian Attractions, Top Ten Lizards,  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Komodo_National_Park,
  8. Tropical Rainforest Heritage of Sumatra, Indonesia

           The Tropical Rainforest Heritage of Sumatra comprises three Indonesian national parks on the island of Sumatra: Gunung Leuser National Park, Kerinci Seblat National Park and the Bukit Barisan Selatan National Park.
    Links:
     Top Ten Indonesian Attractions, Top 100 PlantsTop 100 Flowershttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tropical_Rainforest_Heritage_of_Sumatrahttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gunung_Leuser_National_Parkhttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kerinci_Seblat_National_Parkhttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bukit_Barisan_Selatan_National_Park,
  9. Namdapha National Park, India
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           Namdapha National Park is the largest protected area in the Eastern Himalaya biodiversity hotspot and is located in Arunachal Pradesh in Northeast India. It is also the 3rd largest national park in India in terms of area. It is located in the Eastern Himalayan sub-region and is recognized as one of the richest areas in biodiversity in India. The park harbors the northernmost lowland evergreen rainforests in the world at 27°N latitude. The area is also known for extensive Dipterocarp forests.
    Links: National Parks, Top Ten National ParksTop Ten Asian National Parks,   http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Namdapha_National_Park,
  10. Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park, Philippines
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           The Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park is located about 50 km (31 mi) north of the city center of Puerto Princesa, Palawan, Philippines. The National Park is located in the Saint Paul Mountain Range on the northern coast of the island. It is bordered by St. Paul Bay to the north and the Babuyan River to the east. The City Government of Puerto Princesa has managed the National Park since 1992. It is also known as St. Paul’s Subterranean River National Park, or St. Paul Underground River. The entrance to the Subterranean River is a short hike from the town of Sabang. Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park is one of the 28 finalists for the “New Seven Wonders of Nature” competition.
    Links: Top Ten Philippines Attractions, Top Ten Caves, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Puerto_Princesa_Subterranean_River_National_Park,
  11. Royal Chitwan National Park, Nepal
    Royal Chitwan National ParkRoyal Chitwan National Park1Royal Chitwan National Park2Royal Chitwan National Park3Royal Chitwan National Park4Royal Chitwan National Park5Royal Chitwan National Park6Royal Chitwan National Park7
    Chitwan National Park is the first national park in Nepal. Formerly called Royal Chitwan National  Park it was established in 1973 and granted the status of a World Heritage Site in 1984. It covers an area of 932 square km (360 square mi) and is located in the subtropical Inner Terai lowlands of south central Nepal in the Chitwan District. In altitude it ranges from about 100 meters (330 ft.) in the river valleys to 815 m (2,674 ft.) in the Churia Hills. In the north and west of the protected area the Narayani-Rapti river system forms a natural boundary to human settlements. Adjacent to the East of Chitwan National Park is Parsa Widlife Reserve, contiguous in the south is the Indian Tiger reserve Valmiki National Park. The coherent protected area of 2,075 square km (801 square mi) represents the Tiger Conservation Unit (TCU) Chitwan-Parsa-Valmiki, which covers a (3,549 square km) (801 square mi.) huge block of alluvial grasslands and subtropical moist deciduous forests.
    Links: Top Ten Nepalese Attractions, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chitwan_National_Park,
  12. Yakushima, Japan

           Yakushima, one of the Ōsumi Islands, is an island of about 500 km² and roughly 15,000 islanders to the south of Kyūshū in Kagoshima Prefecture, Japan. The Vincennes Strait (Yakushima Kaikyō) separates it from Tanegashima. The highest point on the island is Miyanoura-dake at 1,935 metres (6,360 ft). It is covered in dense forest noted especially for old growth Cryptomeria trees known as sugi in Japan and magnificent rhododendrons. The island forms part of Kirishima-Yaku National Park. It is the largest nesting ground for the endangered loggerhead sea turtle in the North Pacific. Yakushima is Japan’s wettest place with one of the world’s highest precipitation rates at 4,000 to 10,000 mm. It is the southernmost place in Japan where there is snow in the mountains, often for months, while the ocean temperature is never below 19°C. The Yakusugi Forest is visited by 300,000 tourists every year. It is said to have inspired the forest setting in Hayao Miyazaki’s film Princess Mononoke. The island has been a test site for Honda’s hydrogen fuel cell vehicle research. Yakushima’s electricity is more than 50% hydroelectric, and surplus power has been used to produce hydrogen gas in a small experiment by Kagoshima University. There are no hydrogen cars stationed on the island but a few electric cars are run by the municipality.
    Links: Top Ten Japanese Attractions, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yakushima,
  13. The Sundarbans

           The Sundarbans is the largest single block of tidal halophytic mangrove forest in the world. The name Sundarban can be literally translated as “beautiful forest” in the Bengali language. The name may have been derived from the Sundari trees that are found in Sundarbans in large numbers. The forest lies in the vast delta on the Bay of Bengal formed by the super confluence of the Padma, Brahmaputra and Meghna rivers across Saiyan southern Bangladesh. The seasonally-flooded Sundarbans freshwater swamp forests lie inland from the mangrove forests on the coastal fringe. The forest covers 10,000 square km of which about 6,000 are in Bangladesh. The Sundarbans is estimated to be about 4,110 km², of which about 1,700 km² is occupied by waterbodies in the forms of river, canals and creeks of width varying from a few meters to several kilometers. The Sundarbans is intersected by a complex network of tidal waterways, mudflats and small islands of salt-tolerant mangrove forests. The interconnected network of waterways makes almost every corner of the forest accessible by boat. The area is known for the eponymous Royal Bengal Tiger (Panthera tigris tigris), as well as numerous fauna including species of birds, spotted deer, crocodiles and snakes. The fertile soils of the delta have been subject to intensive human use for centuries, and the ecoregion has been mostly converted to intensive agriculture, with few enclaves of forest remaining. The remaining forests, pain together with the Sundarbans mangroves, are important habitat for the endangered tiger. Additionally, the Sundarbans serves a crucial function as a protective barrier for the millions of inhabitants in and around Khulna and Mongla against the floods that result from the cyclones.
    Links: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sundarbans,
  14. Links: National Parks,

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