Salyan District is a part of Karnali province. Salyan covers an area of 1,462 km2 with a population of 213,500 in 2001 and 241,716 in 2011. The district’s administrative center is named Salyan or Salyan Khalanga, today it is part of Shaarda Municipality.
Although Salyan is considered a hilly district, its southwest salient is actually outside the Pahari-inhabited hill region, in the lower Siwalik Hills that are more an extension of the Terai.
The Babai River flows through the southwestern Siwaliks section after draining Dang Valley. A tributary Sharad Khola drains the eastern half of Salyan’s hill region—including the district center, then exits these hills by cutting through the Mahabharat Range to its confluence with the Babai. The western half of Salyan’s hill region is drained by the Bheri.