About Khangchendzonga National Park (KNP)
- Khangchendzonga National Park (KNP) was designated a World Heritage Site in 2016 under the ‘mixed’ category (Mixed heritage sites contain elements of both natural and cultural significance).
- On August 10, 2018, the Khangchendzonga Biosphere Reserve (KBR) of Sikkim was included in the UNESCO’s World Network of Biosphere Reserve (WHBR).
- Khangchendzonga National Park has become the 11th Biosphere Reserve from India that has been included in the UNESCO designated World Network of Biosphere Reserves (WNBR).
- Khangchendzonga National Park Located in Sikkim is one of the highest ecosystems in the world, reaching elevations of 1, 220 metres above sea-level.
- Includes a range of ecoclines (a gradation from one ecosystem to another, with no abrupt boundary between the two), varying from subtropical to Arctic, as well as natural forests in different biomes, that support an immensely rich diversity of forest types and habitats.
- World’s third highest peak, Mt. Khangchendzonga, is situated within the Park.
- Many of the mountains, peaks, lakes, caves, rocks, Stupas (shrines) and hot springs function as pilgrimage sites.
- Over 118 species of the large number of medicinal plants found in Dzongu Valley in north Sikkim are of ethno-medical utility.
- The core area of the Biosphere Reserve is a major transboundary Wildlife Protected Area and is largely situated in the Greater Himalayas.
- The northern part of the area is characterized by trans-Himalayan features.
World Heritage Site (WHS)
- A WHS listed by UNESCO for its special cultural or physical significance.
- The list of WHS maintained by the international ‘World Heritage Programme’, administered by the UNESCO World Heritage Committee.
- The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) seeks to encourage the identification, protection and preservation of cultural and natural heritage around the world considered to be of outstanding value to humanity.
- This is embodied in an international treaty called the Convention concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage, adopted by UNESCO in 1972.
- India has 38 world heritage sites that include 30 Cultural properties, 7 Natural properties and 1 mixed site.
List of WHS:https://journalsofindia.com/38-unesco-world-heritage-sites-in-india/