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Bardia Eco Lodge

Bardia National Park is one of Nepal’s seven national parks and is the most westerly. It is a haven for wildlife and in particular endangered species such as Rhinoceros, Wild elephant, Tiger, Swamp deer, Gharial crocodile, Gangetic dolphin, Bengal florican and Sarus crane. We are helping to build a carbon neutral wildlife lodge with the aim of providing an environmentally sympathetic and sustainable destination for tourists, which will also benefit the local community.

Bardia National Park

Bardia National park is situated in the mid far western Terai, in a remote part of Nepal, east of the Karnali River, and covers an area of 968 sq km. It is about 585 km away from Kathmandu and one of the largest national parks, though one of the least explored by foreigners. The park is the largest and most undisturbed wilderness area in the southern part of Nepal. About 70% of the park is covered with predominantly sal forest with a mixture of grassland, savannah and riverine forest. The park’s headquarters are situated in Thakurdwara, surrounded by idyllic villages inhabited by the indigenous Tharu ethnic group.

The park provides excellent habitat for endangered animals like the rhinoceros, wild elephant (including one of the last known herds of wild elephants in South Asia), tiger, swamp deer, black buck, Gharial crocodile and Gangetic dolphin. Endangered birds include the Bengal florican, silver-eared mesia and Sarus crane. More than 30 different mammals, over 200 species of birds, and many snakes, lizards and fish have been recorded in the park's forest, grassland and river habitats. A good number of resident and migratory birds are also found in the park.

The concept

The purpose of our project is to build an eco friendly lodge on a site on the edge of the Royal Bardia National Park, in Nepal. The lodge development is to be eco-friendly, in that it will have as little impact as possible on the land and ecosystem in which it occupies. The lodge will also strive to minimize negative socio-cultural impacts on the area population. The lodge will be planned to meet these goals, while also offering a variety of comfortable lodging choices for travellers, and a design that is both highly functional and tasteful.

The main aim for this development is to create a lodge that meets the goals of an eco lodge, and also to be “carbon neutral”. The goal of being “carbon neutral” is to offset the Carbon Dioxide (CO2) produced through the use of propane, gas powered vehicles, and other creators of CO2, by increasing vegetation on site which will absorb the CO2 and transform it into oxygen.

Other aims for the lodge include:

  1. Minimize impact- minimize the negative consequences of tourism on the environment through the use of recyclable and renewable resources.
  2. Build environmental awareness- educate tourist and residents of the local Tharu community, through literature, and well trained guides
  3. Provide direct financial benefits for conservation- help fund environmental protection, research, and education
  4. Provide financial benefits and empowerment for local people- provide tangible benefits to the local people, including potable water, roads, health clinics, jobs, etc.
  5. Respect local culture- help educate travellers about local customs, dress codes, and social norms.

Posted: 28 September 2009

The latest news from Bardia is that the drainfield is now complete. After a lot of hard work and much lateral thinking, we have a fully functioning drainfield, that we can safely say is the first of its kind in Bardia, but hopefully won't be the last. The dining hall roof is now on and the railings around the outside are up too. One cottage has been built and the rooms fitted out with some basic furniture. Solar panels will be installed soon, along with a solar powered hot water system. More coming soon...

Drainfield under construction Dining hall with roof on
Drain field under construction Dining hall with the roof on
First cottage now built Basic furniture in inside the cottage
First cottage now built Inside the first cottage
Carpenter at work Elephants passing by the dining hall
Carpenter at work   Elephants passing the dining hall

Posted: 12 June 2009

Construction is underway and below you can see some of the most recent photos. We have sourced and bought several old houses to reuse the timber, bricks and tiles in the new construction. We have sited the dining hall at the font of the land to make the most of the fantastic views over the river. It has been designed to incorporate a balcony at the front to allow people to sit up higher and give an even better view. The kitchen and store is behind the dining hall and has been made from recycled brick and has a tiled roof, this has done to reduce the fire risk and for hygiene purposes. Cottages will be built further back and surrounded by trees and gardens. The monsoon will come soon so we will start putting some of the service, water, sewage, power etc, later in the year after the monsoon has passed.

Gabion wall at front of land Sunset view from the dining hall
New gabion wall at front of land Sunset view from the dining hall
Old house used for wood and tiles Frame for the dining hall
Old house bought for wood & tiles Frame for the dining hall
Kitchen & store under construction  Dining hall with roof nearly finished
Kitchen and store under construction   Dining hall with roof nealy finished

Posted: 30 April 2009

Recent monsoons have caused the river to start cutting away the bank at the front of our land and also endangering the road that runs along the font. To stop this’ the National Park and Government have decided to reinforce the bank right in front of our land. They are building a substantial gabion wall over the next few weeks. Not so good to looking but better than loosing our land!

Posted: 16 October 2008

At last we have incorporated Bardia Eco Lodge Pvt. Ltd.! After a year of long hard slog, bureaucratic nightmare, and plenty of baksheesh, we have final crossed the finishing line. Big thanks go out to Narayan for all his hard work and dedication, and for not giving up when things kept stalling.

Our plan now is to start construction early next year with a possible opening scheduled for late 2009.

Posted: 03 October 2007

We have now secured a website address and over the coming months we will be constructing a full website.

Posted: 21 Septmeber 2007

Back in February 2003 we secured a perfect plot of land, which overlooks the Khauraha River, a branch of the Geruwa River, just a few hundred metres from the park entrance. It is about 160 metres long by 50 metres wide and should be ideal for a good sized lodge complex. We immediately started planting trees and shrubs on the land in preparation for building, however the political situation in Nepal deteriorated and we were unable to continue with the project. Now that the situation has improved we are keen to get this project back on track and will be updating this page on a regular basis as the project develops. Below are some photos of the land as it has changed over the last few years:

View of land for the eco lodge, Bardia, Nepal View of the river from our land, Bardia, Nepal
Taken in 2003, the above photos show the land when it was being farmed
Bardia eco lodge sign, Nepal Trees growing on the land, Bardia, Nepal
 Grass collected for making roofs, Bardia, Nepal
Taken in 2007, the above photos show the land under early development

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