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Nepal travel guide

What you must know about nepal

Experience Nepal

Nepal is a small, landlocked country, 800km long and 200km wide making a total land area of 147,181 sq. km. The landscape soars from just 150m above sea level to 8848m at the tip of Mt. Everest. Nepal covers only 0.1% of the world’s surface area but is home to 8% of the world’s species of birds, including 72 critically endangered species. Geographically, Nepal can be divided into three regions: 1. Himalayan (snow peaks) Region 2. Hilly (mountain) Region 3. Tarai (plain) Region

 

Quick View of Nepal
The best weather for trekking
Culture
Insurance
Money
  • Capital Kathmandu
  • Literacy rate 48.6%
  • Life expectancy 62 years
  • Population 29.5 million
  • 10 of the worlds 14 tallest mountains
  • 2% of all the flowering plants in the world.
  • 8% of the world’s population of birds (more than 848 species)
  • 4% of mammals on earth.
  • Electricity 220-240 Volts, 50 Hz

The climate of Nepal can be broadly divided into two seasons: The dry season runs from October to May and the wet (monsoon) season runs from June to September. Because of the varied topography, the weather in Nepal can vary from one region to another. As a general rule, temperatures fall and rainfall decreases the higher up we go. The most popular season to visit Nepal is the dry season i.e. October to May, with October and November recognized as having the best weather for trekking; the landscape is green and lush from the recent monsoon rains, the air is crisp and clean and the views of the Himalaya are crystal clear. During this season the nights are cold in the mountains, but the bright sun makes for pleasant daytime temperatures. At higher altitudes temperatures range from about 20 degree Centigrade down to -0 degree Centigrade at night. By early December winter is starting to creep in and the cold can be bitter and dangerous at high altitudes and the trails are often blocked by snow. The pre monsoon period from May to early June is very hot and humid with temperatures soaring above 30 degree Centigrade. From mid June to September the monsoon rains lash Nepal turning the foothill trails into the mud river, rafting rivers become more furious and roads are often blocked by floods and landslides.

Nepal’s location between India and Tibet, the diversity of its 60 or more ethnic groups, its isolating geography and myriad languages have resulted in a complex pattern of customs and beliefs.
 
The dominant Nepali cultural concepts are those of caste and status, both of which contribute to a strictly defined system of hierarchy.
 
Caste determines a person’s status and marriage partner. Nepal sweeps you along crooked, ancient streets flanked by dazzling, multi-roofed pagodas, gold-topped stupas and arcane stone sculptures, and into low-ceilinged rooms cluttered with horror-eyed masks, spinning prayer wheels, Buddhist thangka scrolls and Tibetan carpets.
 
Either it is muttered chants of Buddhists monks in monastery or an early morning worship of Kathmandu’s housewife in a local temples, it is believed that the divine is everywhere. In Nepal, Hinduism and Buddhism is mingled wonderfully into a complex, syncretic blend like nowhere else.

 

A travel insurance policy that covers medical expenses, evacuation, theft and loss is recommended. Make sure the insurance also covers all the adventure activities during your stay in Nepal.

Nepalese Rupees are found in denominations of 1000, 500, 100, 50, 20, 10, 5, 2, 1 notes. Coins are found in denominations of 1, 2, 5 rupees. One rupee equals 100 paisa. Major international currencies, including the US dollar, euro and pounds sterling, are readily accepted. In Nepal the Indian rupee is also like a hard currency – the Nepali rupee is pegged to the Indian rupee at the rate of INRs 100 = NRs 160. Be aware that INRs 500 and INRs 1000 notes are not accepted anywhere in Nepal, apparently due to forgeries. Banks in Katmandu are open 10 am to 3:30 pm Sunday through Friday.

  • Credit Cards: Major credit cards are widely accepted at midrange and better hotels, restaurants and fancy shops in the Kathmandu Valley and Pokhara only. Remember to keep your Foreign Exchange Encashment, Receipt while making foreign exchange payments or transferring foreign currency into Nepalese rupees. The receipts may be needed to change left-over Nepalese Rupees into foreign currency before leaving the country.
  • ATMs:  The major banks have ATMs in Kathmandu and Pokhara where you can get cash advances on both Visa and MasterCard 24 hours a day. But it is suggested to use an ATM attached to a bank during business hours will minimise the hassle in the rare event that the machine eats your card. Official exchange rates are set by the government’s Nepal Rastra Bank and listed in the daily newspapers. Rates at the private banks vary, but are generally not far from the official rate. Please check http://www.kantipuronline.com/forex.php for further information.
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