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Nepal Information for Travelers

GETTING ACQUAINTED

Nepal's Culture is Greatly Influenced by its Music, Architecture, Religion and Literature. Around 80% area of Nepal is mountainous and covers an area of 147,181 sq km with the population of 30,485798 (2011). The only flat land in Nepal is Terai, at the height of 100metres above sea level. And most people prefer to live in the lowlands where agriculture is possible. Summer temperature goes often above 30 degrees and bright sunny winters with temperature of 20 degrees.

Religion: Religion occupies an integral part in life of Nepalese people. Majority of people i.e. about 85% followed Hinduism remaining followed Buddhism, Christianity, Islam & others.

When to Come: Best time to Visit Nepal is the autumn season from early September to early December, when the weather is clear and warm with cooler nights.Spring, from March to May end when there is an occasional rainfall. Summer trekking is possible in regions of Trans-Himalayas of Mustang, Dolpo and Tibet as these lie in rain shadow area.

Visa & Permit: All foreign nationals except Indians need visa to enter Nepal.

Currency, Money exchange and Credit card: ATMs and exchange facilities are available across the country. Credit cards are also accepted in most major hotels, restaurants and shops. However do check that particular card is acceptable or not. Both Euro and US Dollar travellers’ cheque can be cashed relatively easily in most banks and major hotels.

Indian rupee can be pegged to the Nepalese rupee at the rate of 1indian rupee=1.6 Nepalese rupee. However the Government of Nepal has banned the denominations of 1000 and 500 Indian rupee notes.

Photography: Take photographs only after obtaining permission from the individual being photographed. In case of public buildings and religious places ask the authority in charge.

Food: You will come across a wide variety of food in Nepal as the food is heavily influenced by Indian and Tibetan cuisine. International foods from across the globe are particularly represented in restaurants in Kathmandu. Although traditional Nepalese food is often described as bland but is certainly healthy and nourishing.

Water: Due to lack of proper sanitary facilities and sewage treatment, the water is unsafe for drinking without proper treatment. So it is best to stick to either tea or bottled water.

HOW TO REACH

Air: Tribhuvan airport in Kathmandu is the only international airport in Nepal. Air India, Thai airways, Qatar Airways, Austrian Airways operates direst flight to Kathmandu.

Land: There are five border crossings open to tourists. The Sanauli- Bhairawa close to Varanasi, the Raxaul-Birganj crossing to Patna and Kolkatta, the Siliguri-Kakarbhitta is to Darjeeling, the Banabassa -Mahendranagar in Nepal is closest to Delhi and the Bahraich-Nepalganj border closest to Lucknow

Getting Around in Nepal
Buses are the main mode of transport in Nepal. There are two train lines but are very slow.
Metered taxis are available in main places like Kathmandu and Pokhara.
Mountain Bikes and ordinary bicycle are available on rent in Kathmandu & Pokhara.
You must have an International Driving Permit to drive in Nepal.

WHAT TO BRING

Clothing: Easy to wash medium weight clothes are recommended for all year round trips. From October to February carry woollen sweaters and jackets. From March to June light clothing is fine, but do carry a jacket or a woollen sweater for morning and evening. June to August travellers should carry an umbrella, a raincoat and a pair of sandals as this is the rainy season in Nepal.

Shoes: A good comfortable walking shoes is recommended. For trekking bring hiking boots and plenty of cotton socks.

Drinking Water: Bottled water or Boiled and filtered water are recommended. Bottled water is available everywhere but should be bought in Kathmandu as price are much higher in other places. But make sure you dispose off the empty bottle at right places.

COMMUNICATIONS FACILITIES

Telecommunication services: Hotel and private communication centres provide long distance calls and fax facilities. International dialling code is 977 and Kathmandu area code is 01.

Postal services: The central post office is located near Dharahara Tower and is open from 10am to 5pm on all weekdays. Express Mail Service is available at GPO and at Thamel, Basantpur and Airport postal counters.

Internet services: Internet cafes are readily available in the valley and around. Some hotels also provide this facility.

Time Difference: 5 hrs 45min ahead of GMT.