Nepal, small though it may, has so much to offer the visitor that each day of your journey through this ancient land will be a discovery. It is an opportunity for you to take in the country’s remarkable natural Kaleidoscope, delve into its vast cultural repository, and delight in its equally extensive adventure offerings. The Nepal Himalayas, containing as many as eight of the ten highest peaks in the world, is undoubtedly the country’s biggest allure. However, there is much more to Nepal than just Mt. Everest and its minions. Mighty rivers tumble down from the Himalayas offering world class rafting opportunities, and the flatlands of the Tarai are dotted with jungle reserves that shelter some of Asia’s most exotic wildlife. Indeed, the breathtaking biotic diversity that can be found here has given the Kingdom a natural affluence matched by few places on this earth. Equally breathtaking is Nepal’s cultural heritage. The Kathmandu valley with temples, shrines and other monuments packed into its nook and cranny, as well as its arts and crafts, architecture and the year round celebrations that mark numerous festivals, is the cultural hub of the nation. The practices and beliefs of the diverse communities living elsewhere in the Kingdom have added extra color and flavor to Nepal’s vibrant culture.
There are few countries with geography as diverse as Nepal’s. Within its narrow borders you will find a complete climatic range, from tropical to temperate, alpine to arctic. Within this spectacular geography is also found one of the richest and most diverse cultural landscapes. The Himalayas extend from Assam in eastern India to Afghanistan in the west and is the highest and youngest mountain chain on earth. To the North lies China and the rest of Nepal’s borders are shared with India. Nepal can be divided into three east-to-west geographical zones. Going from north to south are the summit- laden Himalayas, the middle hills of the Shiwalik and Mahabharat ranges, and to the south the lush plains of the Tarai. This features an astonishing topographical variation with the altitude ranging from 70 meters to 8848 meters. There are four seasons in Nepal. Winter is from December to February. Spring is from March to May, summer from June to August, and autumn from September to November.Nepal can be visited throughout the year, although activities like Safari Excursions, Rafting, Trekking and Mountain flights are best from October to May.
Nepal Standard Time is 5 hours 45 minutes ahead of GMT and 15 minutes ahead of Indian Standard Time Entering time: The Capital city of Kathmandu is reachable by both air and road. Flights link it with Delhi, Kolkata, Varanasi and Mumbai in India, Dhaka in Bangladesh, Karachi (Pakistan), Paro (Bhutan), Bangkok (Thailand), Singapore, Hongkong, Dubai, Frankfurt, London, Paris, Osaka and Lhasa.By road there are 15 entry points, the major ones being Birgunj, Bhairahawa (Sunauli), Kakarbhita, Nepalgunj (from India) and at Kodari from Tibet.
No International certificates of vaccination regarding current inoculation against Cholera, Typhoid or Yellow fever are required. Clothing: It is advisable to bring along warm clothing while traveling from November to February and tropical wear from March to October.
Nepal is a religious melting pot and the major religions are Hinduism (90%) , Buddhism (6%) , Islam (3%) and the rest (1%) comprise of Catholics and others. But there is a harmony among the religions. Population: Nepal has almost 2.5 million people comprising of a variety of races and tribes, speaking different language and dialects.
There are more than 30 languages and dialects and as many distinct ethnic groups. Nepali is the official language and English is understood and spoken by majority of people in Kathmndu valley and other major cities. Local Currency: The Nepalese Rupees is the local currency and is subdivided into 100 poises. The denomination of currency notes available are in 1, 2, 5, 10, 20, 25, 50, 100, 500, 1000 and coins in 50 paisa, 1, 2, 5 Rupee currently in circulation. Currency Regulation: Import of Indian Currency by foreigners other than Indian nationals is strictly prohibited. All visitors should obtain a receipt for all currency exchange. The same should be handed over at the airport at the departure and generally 10% of the amount exchanged can be reconverted from Nepalese Rupees into US Dollars. No Indian currency larger than Rs.100 bills are allowed into the country. Visa: A visa is required to enter Nepal except for Indian Nationals. Indians must, however, possess identification papers. Tourists staying for up to three days get a free visa. Visitors from SAARC countries and China do not have to pay any visa fees. Chinese travelers can get visas at the entry point upon arrival. Re-entry visas are granted free of cost to any visitor who has stayed for at least 15 days in Nepal in a visa year (January – December). Children under 10 are not charged for a visa. For up-to-date specific information, Passport: A valid passport is required for all nationals except Indians. Indians must, however, possess valid identification papers issued from the govt. authority.
All baggage must be declared and cleared through the customs on arrival at the entry. Personal effects are permitted free entry. A tourist may bring in dutiable goods, such as tobacco and liquor, within the prescribed quantity free of duty. Carrying narcotics, arms and ammunition are strictly prohibited. Visitors can export souvenirs to their respective countries. The export of antiques requires special certificate from the Department of Archaeology.