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LOCATION

It borders with the Tibet Autonomous region of the People's Republic of China in the North and the India in the East, South and West respectively.

 

LANGUAGE

Nepali is the national language of Nepal. Yet the average people whom travelers have to deal with will speak and understand English and various other foreign languages.

TIME

Nepal time is 5:45 hours ahead of GMT and 15 minutes ahead of Indian Standard Time.
 

CLIMATE

Nepal has four major seasons namely, Winter [Dec.-Feb.], Spring [Mar.-May], Summer [June-Aug.] and Autumn [Sept.-Nov.]. Nepal can be visited the whole year round. But for trekking and mountaineering the best seasons are Spring and Autumn.

 

PEOPLE &  RELIGION

Nepalese people are mainly divided into two distinct groups the Indo-Aryans and the Mangoloids. Kathmandu valley which is also the capital city of Nepal, is the spiritual and cultural meeting point of all these groups.

Nepal is the only Hindu Kingdom in the world. Hindu Temples and Buddhist shrines are scattered all over the Kingdom. Nepal is the birth-place of Lord Buddha - the Light of Asia. You will find a complex blending of Hinduism and Buddhism in Nepal, which is unique.

 

WHAT TO WEAR

Except in formal gathering, informal clothes are acceptable mostly everywhere. Warm garments are required in October - March. An umbrella or a rain coat is a must for the rainy season.

 

CURRENCY & EXCHANGE

Nepali Rupee note comes in Rs. 1, 2, 5, 10, 20, 25, 50, 100, 500 and 1000 denominations. Foreign currency must be exchanged only through banks or authorized foreign exchange dealers. The receipts from such transaction are to be obtained and retained. Visitors can exchange foreign currency at the foreign exchange counter at the airport upon arrival or from any of the government authorised money exchange counters in the Kathmandu city.

Visitors other than the Indian nationals have to make payments in hotels, travel and trekking agencies and air tickets in foreign currency. Non-Indian visitors are not allowed to import or export Indian Currency. The approximate value of One US Dollar is equivalent Rs. 70.

 

ENTRY PROCEDURES

All visitors except the Indian nationals must hold a passport and a valid Visa. The Visa can be obtained at the Nepalese Diplomatic Missions and Consuls abroad and entry points issue Visa for visitors. The Visa will be extended at the Department of Immigration, New Baneswor. Department of Immigration also issues multi entry Visa for the visitors.

 

CUSTOM FORMALITIES

All baggages must be declared and cleared through the customs of the port of entry. Personal effects are permitted free entry. The duty on articles brought by the visitors varies according to the volume and value of the goods. A tourist may bring in dutiable goods such as tobacco and liquors, within the prescribed quantity free of duty. Carrying narcotics, arms and ammunition are strictly prohibited . Visitors can export souvenirs to their respective countries. However, the export of antiques requires a special certificate from the Department of Archaeology, National Archive Building, Ram Shah Path, Kathmandu Tel. 4215358. Gold, Silver, precious stones, wild animals and their skins, horns etc., all drugs whether processed or in their natural state, are prohibited to export.

 

TRAVEL ROUTE

Royal Nepal Airlines, the national flag carrier of Nepal and other International airlines operate scheduled flights to Kathmandu from Bangkok, Bombay, Calcutta, Delhi, Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Dhaka, Paro, Varanasi, Frankfurt, Paris, Hongkong, Karachi, London, Moscow, Osaka, Singapore and Lhasa. The International Airlines operating their flights to Kathmandu are Aeroflot, Biman Bangladesh Airlines, China South West Airlines, Druk Air, Indian Airlines, Pakistan International Airlines, Singapore Airlines, Gulf Air, Qatar Airways and Thai International.

 

AIRPORT TAX

Rs. 1000 approx. per person for departure to SAARC (South Asian Countries) and Rs. 1600 approx. for departure to other international destinations.

 

INTERNAL TRANSPORT

Royal Nepal Airlines has an extensive network of air services in the interior of Nepal. This includes Taplejung, Bhadrapur, Rajbiraj, Bhojpur, Phaplu, Lukla, Lamidanda, Tumlingtar, Rumjatar, Biratnagar, Nepalgunj, Surkhet, Dang, Rolpa, Jumla, Pokhara, Simikot, Jomsom, Mahendranagar, Dhangadi, Silgadi, Tikapur, Sanphebagar, Baitadi and Dharchula.

Besides Royal Nepal Airlines, there are many other domestic airlines such as Nepal Airways, Buddha Air, Everest Air, Necon Air, Lumbini Airways, Yeti Airways, Cosmic Air, Asian Airlines and Helicopters, Karnali Helicopters and Dynasty Helicopters, provide regular and charter services to different popular domestic destinations.

 

MOUNTAIN FLIGHTS

Royal Nepal Airlines and other domestic Airlines in the private sector also operate breathtaking mountain flights for the tourists round the year.

 

TREKKING PERMITS

Trekking is the best way to get to interesting and remote country side or mountain villages of Nepal and to enjoy the views of the famous peaks together with their lifestyle untouched with modern civilization.

The Department of Immigration located at Bhrikuti Mandap,  issues trekking permits for the tourists who intend to go on a trekking within Nepal. However, many of the trekking regions are declared as permit free zone where no permit is necessary. But it is always advisable to go on a group trek.

Some of the trekking regions are: Annapurna, Everest, Langtang, Rara, Dolpa, Kanchenjunga, Manaslu, Mustang, Upper Dolpa.

Note: Trekking to Dolpa, Kanchenjunga, Makalu and Mustang can be undertaken only through registered trekking agencies. There are many government registered trekking agencies in Nepal to conduct such trekking programs.

 

FACILITIES

Nepal has every type of accommodation facilities that a tourist might ask for. This ranges from the international standard star hotels to budget hotels and lodges. Similarly one can also have a choice of sightseeing from a range of different tour packages. In order to have an assured quality services it is advisable to use the facilities and services of government registered hotels, lodges, travel agencies, the licensed tour guides only and engage an authorized guide or porter only through a registered travel/trekking agency.

 

MAJOR TOURISTS ATTRACTIONS

Very few countries in the world can offer as many varieties of adventure tourism packages as Nepal. Of the 14 peaks above 8000 meters in the world, eight are located in Nepal. It is the land of Sagarmatha (Mt. Everest 8848m), the highest peak in the world and other 1310 mountain peaks. For those who cannot withstand the rigorousness of mountain climbing there are mountain  flights which fly around the Mount Everest and provide a close look of the top of the world. Also from Nagarkot (32km east of Kathmandu) and Daman (80km Southwest of Kathmandu) one can have a distant views of Mt. Everest and beautiful Himalayan Ranges.

The River rafting, which is also known as "White water adventure" represents another major attractions. Within distance of 100 miles, one can see the topographical variations with the rivers rising from the higher points near Nepal's Tibetan border and then dropping dramatically to lower levels the plains bordering India. For those who wish to view wildlife, Nepal offers plenty of scope. There are eight National Parks, four Wildlife Reserves and two Conservation Areas in Nepal. For the less adventures, Pokhara, the lake city of Nepal has no equal as it provides ample opportunities for fishing, swimming, canoeing and boating along with the sightseeing of majestic panoramic views in its background. It is only Pokhara, a tropical spot with an altitude of about 900 meters, from where one can see the mountain crossing over 8000m from such a short distance of about 40 kilometers.

For the nature lovers Nepal is truly a land of natural beauty that metaphors cannot delineate its real picture. At the same time, Nepal offers an incomparable scope to the scholars and connoisseurs of art and culture to see and study the different aspects of the fine-arts be its painting, sculpture, wood carving or architecture. Kathmandu Valley possesses several historical monuments, old palaces and palace squares, shrines and temples, ageless traditions and legends all make it a living museum that any visitor would cherish its vivid memory in his/her heart forever. Nepal is the land of Lord Pashupatinath, which is supposed to be the holiest Hindu temple in the world. Besides, two out of the four main holy places of Hindu Pilgrimage namely Muktichhetra and Varahachhetra, are located in Nepal. Not only for the Hindus but also for Buddhist Nepal offers a unique place of pilgrimage as it happens to be the birthplace of Lord Buddha, the apostle of peace and compassion. Nepal is a land of festivals with some part of the Kingdom or the other celebrating some festival everyday of the year. Festivals may be linked with the remembrance of the departed soul, to herald the different gods and goddesses, visit temple, observe fasting and undertake feasting. The most important aspect of Nepali culture is the religious harmony and understanding prevailing among the Hindus and Buddhists.

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