Nepal in Brief:
Country name: Nepal
Area: 147,181 sq km (56,827 sq miles)
Location: Nepal borders on the Tibet Autonomous Region of the People’s Republic of China in the north and India in the east, south and west.
Major language: Nepali
Major religions: Hinduism, BuddhismPopulation: 29.6 million (with 1.09% growth rate)
Language: Nepali is the national language of Nepal. Educated people understand and speak English as well (there are 63 tribal languages).
Fiscal year: he Nepalese fiscal year starts in mid-June.
Time: Nepal standard time is 5 hours 45 minutes ahead of GMT and 15 minutes ahead of Indian standard time
Isolated and forbidden by itself until 1950, the Himalayan country Nepal is becoming more popular as one of the unique natural, cultural and adventurous destinations in the world. The home of Mt. Everest and Sherpas - Nepal is a place of eternal attraction with magical culture and people, ancient history, superb scenery and some of the best hikes on earth. Nepal offers an incredible diversity of sightseeing attractions and mountaineering opportunities found nowhere else on earth. The sights and sounds of Nepal are full of energy and life, and rich with genuine excitement. Hundreds of thousands of tourists return to Nepal every year because of its beauty, simplicity and hospitality!
Nepal is a land of stunning natural beauty with hundreds of miles of forested hiking trails, rivers and streams, green lush valleys and hillside villages filled terraced fields. The snowy peaks of Mount Everest, Annapurna and over 250 peaks over 6000 meters (19685 ft) draw thousands of trekkers and climbers from around the world. Nepal is a heaven for nature lovers.
Geographical and cultural diversity:
Running along the glittering length of the Himalayas, Nepal’s narrow breadth spans one of the most dramatic geographical and cultural transitions on earth. The elevation of the country ranges from 60 m above sea level to the highest point on earth, Mt. Everest at 8,848 m, all within a distance of 200 km with climatic conditions ranging from tropical to arctic. Within this incredible variety of ecosystems and geography, there are 125 ethnic groups with their own language and custom. The peaceful coexistence of multi-religious system and beliefs is one of the most fascinating aspects of Nepal.
With the population of thirty million, Nepal is a melting pot of many races and tribes. The main characteristic of Nepali people is their simplicity and hospitality. Nepalese are simple in every way. Their means of livelihood, way of life, dresses, expenses etc. are all simple! They are very friendly and cooperative. Nepalese are well known for their hospitality and believe in “aateethee deva bhawa” which means “guest is god.” The way Nepali respect and honor the guests are finest in the world.
Hiking in Nepal is to travel by foot in the remote and unexposed areas where life has not changed in generations. In a hiking, people walk through picturesque village and valleys, deep gorge and passes, river and forests, mixing with the people and their unique way of life and sampling the breathtaking scenery which offers a unique blend of physical challenge, mental relaxation and spiritual uplift. Nepal offers varieties of options of day hikes to three weeks hike.
Nepal possesses some of the most outstanding bio-diversity in the world, ranging from sub-tropical Rain forests to Alpine deserts. There are more than 6000 flowering plant species in Nepal. There are several native plants which are originated in Nepal. Himalayan Rhododendron is the most famous one.
Nepal has 30 species of large wild animals and approximately 180 species of mammals. The one horned rhinoceros, Royal Bengal tiger, crocodile, snow leopard, red panda, Himalayan black bear, and many other wild animals are found in the forests of Nepal. Nepal has 840 different species of wet-land, migratory and residential birds.
You can fly to Nepal from any corner of the world with minimum transits. Nepal Airlines is the national flag carrier of Nepal with flights to and from Delhi, Kuala Lumpur, Dubai, Bangkok, Doha and Hong Kong.
Other International airlines operating regular flights to and from Kathmandu are Air Arabia (Sharjah), Air Asia (Kuala Lumpur), Air China (Lhasa, Chengdu), Biman (Dhaka), China Eastern (Kunming), China Southern (Guangzhou), Dragon Air (Hong Kong), Druk Air (Paro), Etihad Airways (Abu Dhabi), Fly Dubai (Dubai), Indian Airlines (Delhi, Varanasi), Jet Airways (Delhi, Mumbai), Korean Air (Seoul), Malaysian Airlines (Kuala Lumpur), Qatar Airways (Doha), Silk Air (Singapore), Thai Airways (Bangkok), Turkish Air (Istanbul) etc.
The ancient city of Kathmandu is slowly turning into a modern metropolis, but within its bustling streets and squares remain numerous temples and monuments of great beauty and historical significance. The rich tapestry of the cultural heritage of Nepal is synthesized in Katmandu valley, representing a perfect example of harmony in urban design, elegant architectures, refined cultures, colorful bazaars and very simple and hospitable people. Once a separate kingdoms in it, Kathmandu valley contains three fabled cities - Kathmandu, Patan and Bhaktapur. Out of ten UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Nepal, seven cultural heritage sites are in Kathmandu Valley. All those heritage sites are like open museums!
Some two hundred years ago a Western visitor wrote that there were as many temples as there were houses, and many idols as there were people, in the city. Indeed Kathmandu boasts one of the largest assemblages of magnificent historical monuments and shrines ever built.
The Kathmandu valley is surrounded with several most beautiful viewpoints such as Nagarkot, Dhulikhel and Namobuddha from where one can enjoy great panoramic view of the Himalayas: Manaslu (7,111m.), Langtang (7,246m.), Choba Bhamre (6,016m.) and even Everest (8,848m.). The view is particularly memorable at the end of the day, when the sun slowly sets beyond the horizon and the mountains glow in the evening light. Both sunrise and sunset, from these viewpoints, are truly breath-taking. Sometimes the lower valley remains under a thick cloud, setting off the mountains high above them.
Nepal in Brief: