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Galathea National Park complete detail – updated

Galathea National Park complete detail – updated. Geography of Galathea National Park. Dominant flora and fauna of Galathea National Park. How to Reach Galathea National Park. 
Total area of the park is 110 Km2. Galathea National Park was established in the year of 1992. Many unique and rare species of plants and animals are found in the park. These species include Giant leather back Turtle, Water monitor lizard, Reticulated python, Nicobar Tree Shrews, Wild pig, Robber crab, Megapode, Nicobar Pigeon Malayan, Palm Civet and Fruit Bat etc.
The other species of fauna are the Nicobar Scrub-Fowl, the Edible Nest Swift let, the Nicobar Long-Tailed Macaque, Saltwater Crocodile, and Malayan Box Turtle etc.
National park is an area which is strictly reserved for the betterment of the wildlife & biodiversity, and where activities like developmental, forestry, poaching, hunting and grazing on cultivation are not permitted. Their boundaries are well marked and circumscribed.

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Galathea National Park is a beautiful place, located in the Nicobar district of Andaman and Nicobar Islands (Union territory) of India. Galathea National Park was established in the year of 1992. Total area of the park is 110 Km2.

The park is located on the island of Great Nicobar in the Nicobar Islands, which lie in the eastern Indian Ocean (Bay of Bengal).

Galathea National Park is a part of the Great Nicobar Biosphere Reserve. Campbell Bay National Park, another park of the Biosphere Reserve. Both the parks are separated from each other by a 12-km forest buffer zone. “Shompens”, one of the ancient tribes in the world, is the original tribe of this region.

Click here to view state wise list of Indian national parks – updated

Galathea National Park is the home to rare and unique species of flora and fauna. Many of them are exclusively found here owing to the geographical conditions prevailing in the island. Several species of flora have grown thoroughly here since centuries. The vegetation here consists largely of tropical and subtropical moist broad leaf forests.

Many unique and rare species of plants and animals are found in the park. These species include Giant leather back Turtle, Water monitor lizard, Reticulated python, Nicobar Tree Shrews, Wild pig, Robber crab, Megapode, Nicobar Pigeon Malayan, Palm Civet and Fruit Bat etc.

The other species of fauna are the Nicobar Scrub-Fowl, the Edible Nest Swift let, the Nicobar Long-Tailed Macaque, Saltwater Crocodile, and Malayan Box Turtle etc.

Flora of the region mostly comprises tropical and subtropical moist broadleaf forests. The tribal population living around the region are quite conservative and have adopted various survival techniques which have evolved as a part of eco-tourism.

The secluded place has an exquisite natural beauty and forms a brilliant site for bird watching.

Languages that are generally spoken in the island are Tamil, Nicobarese, Telugu, Malayalam, Hindi and some people speak English.

History

The first ever inhabitants of the island were believed to have existed 2200 years ago. Historians claim that the Andamanese people existed during the middle Paleolithic ages when they were isolated from other segments where they developed their own cultural, linguistic and separate segments within themselves.

The British reign of the place found the Nicobarese people who spoke Mon-Khmer language and the Shompen whose origin and language has not been related to any other region. They have not been known to relate to the Andamanese.

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History has recorded the conquest of the island by King Rajendra Chola of the Chola Dynasty, circa 1014 to 1042, who used this as a strategic location against attacks from Sriwijaya Empire, which was a Hindu-Malay empire with its base in Sumatra, Indonesia. The island was called Tinmaittivu, meaning ‘impure island’ in Tamil.

Later in the 17th century, it was used as the maritime base of the Maratha Empire. The legendry king Knhoji Angre is credited with making these islands a part of India.

The Danish East India Company had the island under their control from December 1756 till 1848, abandoning the island in between many times during the onslaught of malaria. The abandonment by the Danes created a mistaken notion and Nicobar Island was taken by Austria, renaming it as ‘Theresia Islands’. They established their base and had their presence there from 1778 to 1784.

In 1789, it was the British who set up a colony in Chatham Islands near Great Andamans. This base had a naval base and penal colony which was for the deserters and captured freedom fighters from India. This was later shifted to Port Cornwallis but was deserted due to high malaria incidence in 1796. The Danes sold their rights over Nicobar to the British in 1868. In 1872 both these islands was brought under one British Commissioner.

During the Second World War, the island was in the Japanese hands for a brief spell. This was followed by the Indian National Army which took over from the Japanese. The British and Indian Army took over the island in 1945, where the remaining Japanese army surrendered. The island became a part of the Indian Union in 1950 and was declared Union Territory in 1956. Galathea National Park was established in the year of 1992.

Geography

Galathea National Park is geographically situated in the “Great Nicobar Island”, the largest in Nicobar Islands, which is southern most of Andaman archipelago. Total area of the park is 110 Km2.

It is located on the island of Great Nicobar in the Nicobar Islands, which lie in the eastern Indian Ocean (Bay of Bengal).

Galathea National Park is a part of the Great Nicobar Biosphere Reserve. Campbell Bay National Park, another park of the Biosphere Reserve. Both the parks are separated from each other by a 12-km forest buffer zone. “Shompens”, one of the ancient tribes in the world, is the original tribe of this region.

The vegetation here consists largely of tropical and subtropical moist broad leaf forests. The secluded place has an exquisite natural beauty and forms a brilliant site for bird watching.

The park area falls under acute tropical climate zone and experience the monsoon and summer seasons only. The Great Nicobar Island will not experience the winter season.

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Nicobar island is covered under a typical tropical climate thus only two seasons are witnessed here Monsoon and summers.  During rainy season, this area receives 3,000 to 3,800 mm rainfall as annual. Most of the land area is great meadow.

Critical storms sometimes hit the place. End of the month of January marks the beginning of summer season which lasts up to the June end.

The temperature is quite high during the summer but during the monsoon the temperature reduces substantially.

State wise list of Wildlife Sanctuaries of India – updated 

Dominant flora

The vegetation here consists largely of tropical and subtropical moist broad leaf forests and mangroves.

Mesua ferrea, Pterocarpus indicus, Euphorbia sp., Dendrocalamus, Albizia lebbeck, Calophyllum inophyllum Guettarda speciosa etc.

Dominant fauna

Crab eating Macaque, Giant robber crabs, Saltwater crocodile, Giant leather back turtle, Malayan box turtle, Nicobar tree shrew, Reticulated python, Fruit Bat, Andaman Wild pig, Palm Civet, Nicobar Long-Tailed macaque, Edible Nest Swiftlet, Nicobar Scrub-Fowl, Giant Leatherback Turtles, Water Monitor Lizards, Deer, Long neck giraffe, Wild buffalo, Green Imperial Pigeon, Nicobar Scrub-Fowl, Edible Nest Swift let, Nicobar pigeon, Megapode, Sea Eagle, Sea Cow etc.

Other Attractions

Snorkeling

Scuba diving

Boating

Sea walks

Cellular Jail

Baratang

Barren Islands

Havelock Island

Mount Harriot

North Bay Island

Carbyns Cove Beach

Coral Island

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Best time to visit

Galathea National Park is open throughout the year. The best time of the year to visit the Galathea National Park is between the months of October to April.

Visitors can reach the Galathea National Park through ferries from Port Blair. Port Blair is well connected with Delhi, Kolkata and Chennai Airport as well as through Ships.

Timings – 12:00 AM to 12:00 PM

How to Reach

By AirNearest airport is Port Blair airport, from the Galathea National Park. Port Blair is well connected with Delhi, Kolkata and Chennai Airport as well as through Ships.

By Charted Flights – The facilities for the charter flights are also available in Port Blair.

By Rail – Nearest railway station is Chennai Railway Station in Chennai city of Tamil Nadu, which is about 1623 away from the park.

By Road The Galathea National Park is not connected by roads. Visitors can reach the sanctuary through ferries provided by authorities from Port Blair.

By SeaFrequent ship services are available for the passengers travelling to Port Blair from Vishakhapatnam, Kolkata, Chennai and back. Passenger ships are available from Chennai, Kolkata and Vishakhapatnam to Port Blair. Ferry services are available to the national park.

Accommodation

Hotels and rest rooms are available in the outskirts of the forest subject to prior booking. Visitors are advised to get in touch with the authorities of the Galathea National Park about accommodation and other facilities along with charges.

Useful Contacts

Directorate of Tourism, Incharge (Tourism Information) Andaman & Nicobar Administration Kamaraj Road, Port Blair – 744 101, Phone: 03192-232 694, 232 642 Fax: 03192-232 747, 230 933, E-Mail id: accomodation6@gmail.com

Phone no. (Official) – 03192-232 694, Website (Official) – www.andamans.gov.in

Other  National Parks in Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Year of Notification and Total area is as follows…
S.No. National Park State

 
Established Area (in km²)
1 Mahatama Gandhi Marine (Wandoor) National Park Andaman and Nicobar Islands 1983 281.50
2 Middle Button Island National Park Andaman and Nicobar Islands 1987 0.44
3 Mount Harriett National Park Andaman and Nicobar Islands 1987 46.62
4 North Button Island National Park Andaman and Nicobar Islands 1987 0.44
5 Rani Jhansi Marine National Park Andaman and Nicobar Islands 1996 256.14
6 Saddle Peak National Park Andaman and Nicobar Islands 1987 32.54
7 South Button Island National Park Andaman and Nicobar Islands 1987 0.03
8 Campbell Bay National Park Andaman and Nicobar Islands 1992 426.23

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