India has 35 World Heritage Sites approved by UNESCO which boast of great cultural and natural importance for the country. We are known for having an astonishing variety of flora and fauna that reside here. For the same reason, it is considered heaven for nature enthusiasts and wildlife lovers. So, here are 8 of scenic places from UNESCO’s World Heritage Sites situated in India which are known for their natural beauty. Check them out below:
1. Kaziranga National Park, Assam
It was declared a world heritage site by UNESCO in 1985 for its unique natural environment.
Situated in the Golaghat and Nagaon district of Assam, Kazinranga National Park is home to two third of the world’s population of Indian one-horned rhinoceros along with tigers, elephants, wild water buffaloes, swamp deer and various species of migrating and inhabitant birds. With four different kinds of vegetation, a breathtaking array of flora, diverse fauna and beautiful geographical vicinity, it was included in the list of world heritage sites in the year 1985.
2. Keoladeo National Park, Rajasthan
It was declared a world heritage site by UNESCO in 1985 for being a habitat of rare and endangered species.
Formerly known as the Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary, Keoladeo National Park is a domicile for thousands of resident birds and visiting migratory birds such as the rare Siberian crane, the Indian grey hornbill and various types of eagles. For the same reason, it is often regarded as the bird’s paradise.
3. Manas Wildlife Sanctuary, Assam
It was declared a world heritage site by UNESCO in 1985 for its rich biodiversity, spectacular scenery and natural landscape.
With a splendid scenic sight, Manas Wildlife Sanctuary wraps a vast region of flora and fauna including tiger, pygmy hog, Indian rhinoceros and Indian elephant. Apart from that, it has a range of forested hills, alluvial grasslands and tropical evergreen forests which makes it a perfect place to experience the exquisiteness of nature. It is known for its rare and endangered endemic wildlife such as the Assam roofed turtle, hispid hare and golden langur among other animals.
4. Nanda Devi and Valley of Flowers National Parks, Uttarakhand
It was declared a world heritage site by UNESCO in 1988 for its spectacular topographical features and rich diversity of species.
Nanda Devi and Valley of Flowers National Parks are hosts to high diversity and density of flora and fauna with exceptionally beautiful landscape. While the Nanda Devi National Park is home to a large number of threatened mammals, notably snow leopard, Himalayan musk deer, bharal, and blue sheep, the Valley of Flowers National Park is known for its diverse alpine flora.
5. Sundarbans National Park, West Bengal
It was declared a world heritage site by UNESCO in 1987 mainly because of its immensely rich mangrove flora and mangrove-associated fauna.
Located in West Bengal, Sunderbans National Park is known to have the world’s largest area of mangrove forests with a large number of rare and endangered species living there, such as the Bengal tiger, salt-water crocodile, and fishing cats. Apart from that, this prestigious national park presents a massive range of natural beauty.
6. Western Ghats (2012)
It was declared a world heritage site by UNESCO in 2012 for its exceptionally high level of biodiversity.
The Western Ghats have thousands of animals and plants with a number of globally threatened species and many undiscovered species living there. In addition to Kaas Plateau, Neyyar Wildlife Sanctuary and Periyar Tiger Reserve, there are 22 other places which were added to the World Heritage list in 2012 that are a part of Western Ghats.
7. Great Himalayan National Park Conservation Area, Himachal Pradesh
It was declared a world heritage site by UNESCO in 2014 for being an outstanding significance for biodiversity conservation.
The Great Himalayan National Park is home to more than 375 fauna and various flora species along with twenty-five types of forest in the area. According to reports, almost 31 mammals, 181 birds, 3 reptiles, 9 amphibians, 11 annelids, 17 mollusks and 127 insects have been identified which live around a range of high alpine peaks, alpine meadows and riverine forests.
8. Khangchendzonga National Park, Sikkim
It was declared a world heritage site by UNESCO in 2016. It houses the world’s third highest peak, Mount Khangchendzonga.
Khangchendzonga National Park is the most recent addition made to the list of World Heritage sites. It includes a unique diversity of plains, valleys, lakes, and glaciers, including the world’s third highest peak, Mount Khangchendzonga which adds unparalleled value to the scenic beauty of the park. The vegetation here consists of oaks, fir, birch, maple, and willow with species like musk deer, snow leopards, and wild dogs living here.
Nature at its best!