- Menka Chaudhary
Banke. Okhariya Intake in Geruwa Rural Municipality 1 of Bardiya is now becoming a tourist destination. The number of tourists visiting the Okharia Intake area has been increasing day by day due to the publicity about the beauty, greenery and peaceful environment of the area.
The Okhariya intake area is located at a distance of about 22 km north of Ramjane Chowk, about one kilometer away from the Karnali Geruwa river at Kothiyaghat. It can also be reached from Rajapur market area. The number of visitors is high during the holidays and festivals.
According to the locals, there is a crowd of people eating and having fun during the festival. Tourists are eager to capture the greenery and beauty of the place on their cameras.
Young and old alike are busy taking selfies. Cold air often blows in the intake area. Greenery, calm environment, cool air, open grasses are the main features of this region. The rhinoceros, colorful leisure benches, the mouth of the canal and the confluence of the Karnali River captivate everyone. A pillar bridge of Karnali Chisapani can also be seen from here.
This area lies at the confluence of Karnali and Geruwa rivers. The Geruwa River flows on the right side of the intake and the Karnali River flows on the left side. The right area of the intake is the park.
This area is very quiet and beautiful as there are rivers and forests on both sides. It feels a little colder here than in other parts of the district. Tourists are attracted by the murmuring sound of the river, the wildlife of the park and the birds.
As Okharia is a little far from the intake settlement, the environment here is very calm, clean and beautiful. In the past, no one showed much interest in this area.
The Okhariya intake area has been known as a tourist destination after the local youth showed interest in it recently. At present, the local youth have formed Geruwa Tourism Development Forum and are engaged in its promotion.
Now that the youth have taken the initiative to make it a tourist destination, everyone’s interest has increased.” At present, Geruwa village municipality has also invested in its protection, promotion and publicity.
Last year, the village municipality had spent Rs. 450,000 for the promotion of this sector. At present, 32 eco-friendly arm benches have been set up at Dill and Chaur of Intake to accommodate tourists visiting the area.
Near the mouth of the intake is a comfortable bench with two round tables and a statue of a rhino. Tourists sit on leisure benches and enjoy the beauty. A separate place has been made for eating forest food. Shahid Park near Intake is under construction.
A ‘tree house’ has been built near the park. Tourists stay in the tree house to observe the forest and wildlife. Ward Chairman of Ward No. 1 Dayaram Baidya said that more domestic tourists come to enjoy the intake area during winter. Janaknagar Community Homestay is located about two kilometers from the intake area.
There are 10 hamsters. Homestay operator Bhogu Tharu said that most of the visitors stay in the community homestay for one night. The Karnali River, which flows from the north, divides into two parts after descending a little below the Karnali Chisapani Bridge connecting Bardiya and Kailali.
On the one hand, Karnali flows through Geruwa. On the other hand, Karnali flows through Sattighat. This Dobhan area of Karnali river is now becoming a tourist destination.
The intake of the canal, which is meant to take the water of Karnali river to Geruwa and Rajapur areas for irrigation, has been made in this area. After being known as the tourist area of Bardiya, tourists even come here to see dolphins in the rainy season.
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