Similipal National Park is a national park and a tiger reserve in the Mayurbhanj district in the Indian state of Odisha covering 2,750 km2 (1,060 sq mi). It is part of the Mayurbhanj Elephant Reserve, which includes three protected areas — Similipal Tiger Reserve, Hadgarh Wildlife Sanctuary with 191.06 km2 (73.77 sq mi) and Kuldiha Wildlife Sanctuary with 272.75 km2 (105.31 sq mi). Simlipal National Park derives its name from the abundance of red silk cotton trees growing in the area. It is the 7th largest national park in India.
The park has some beautiful waterfalls like Joranda and Barehipani Falls. It is home to Bengal tiger, Asian elephant, gaur, and chausingha. Besides Simlipal provides habitat fo as well as an orchidarium.This protected area is part of the UNESCO World Network of Biosphere Reserves since 2009.
Relocation of core villages
In December 2013, 32 families from the Khadia tribe belonging to two hamlets of Upper Barhakamuda and Bahaghar were relocated outside the Tiger Reserve as per the guidelines set by National Tiger Conservation Authority. The village of Jamunagarh was relocated in September 2015. Following the relocation, tiger sightings in the core area has gone up. There are two villages, Kabatghai and Bakua, present in the core area of Similipal. The Forest Department, wildlife NGOs and local administration have initiated talks with these villages on their relocation.