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The Himalayas are not merely a geographical feature, a range of mountains. they epitomise people's civilisational identity that goes back to the dawn of history. If these majestic mountains were not there, the rain clouds sweeping up from the Indian Ocean.

Nepal Himalaya

Nepal HimalayaNepal - a country of amazing extremes, is the home of the World's highest mountains, historic cities and the forested plains where the lordly tigers and the great one-horned Rhinoceros trundle at ease. in fact enchantment is everywhere for anyone in search of Shangrila!

Nepal , a sovereign independent Kingdom, is bounded on the North by the Tibetan Autonomous Region of the People's Republic of China , the East-south and West by India . The length of the kingdom is 885-kms East-West and it's breadth varies from 145-241-kms North-South. The country can be divided into three main geographical regions :

Nepal Himalaya Region :
The altitude of this region ranges between 4877-m. - 8848 m. it includes 8 of the highest 14 summits in the world, which exceed altitude of 8,000m including Annapurna, Dhaulagiri and others.

Nepal Mountain Region :
This region accounts for about 64% of total land area. It is formed by the Mahabharat range that soars up to 4,877m and the lower Churia range.

Nepal Terai Region :
The low-land Terai occupies about 17% of the total land area of the country.

Climate Of Nepal:
Nepal has four climatic seasons

Spring : March-May
Sumer : June-August
Autumn: September-November
Winter: December-February.

There is no seasonal constraint on travelling in and through Nepal . Even in December and January, when the winter is at its severest, there are compensating bright sun and brilliant views.

How to Reach Nepal

There are 15 International carriers operating to and out of Kathmandu International airport. There are ten passenger airlines operating to almost 30 destinations in nearly all parts of Nepal - remote airfields to major hub cities. Today it is possible to reach most of the tourist destinations by air. Some of the major tourist destinations in Nepal operated by domestic airlines are:

Pokhara - 35 minutes flight from Kathmandu : The lake town and the gateway to the Annapurna Sanctuary.

Jomsom - 20 minutes flight from Pokhara: The remote village of the Serchans and gateway to remote Mustang.

Bharatpur - 20 minutes flight from Kathmandu: Located in the Royal Chitwan National Park , the reserve of the Royal Bengal Tiger and the Great One Horned Rhinoceros.

Likla - 35 minutes flight from Kathmandu: Gateway to the Sagarmatha National Park , Mount Everest , and many of the other famous Himalayan peaks.

Nepalganj - 65 minutes flight from Kathmandu: Gateway and hub airport to west Nepal and route to the Bardia National Park and Dolpo / Phuksundo National Park.

Geography of Nepal

Nepal ToursNepal lies on the southern side of the eastern end of the Great Himalayan Chain as it sweeps down across the Indian Subcontinent towards the Bay of Bengal . Containing the greatest altitude variation on earth, the juxtaposition of so many different biotypes or life-zones, ranging from lowland plains to 8000 metre peaks and from tropical heat to arctic cold, has given the eastern Himalaya a variety of flora and fauna perhaps unrivalled anywhere in the world. To the south and west the country shares a border with India and the band of lowland plains to the south of the country, the Terai, represents the northernmost extension of the Gangetic Plains of India . Here, the climate is that of the subtropical monsoon and the vegetation is mostly deciduous. Rising from these plains, often only twenty miles from the border, are the foothills of the great ranges, the Siwalik and Mahabarat mountains, reaching heights of between two and five thousand metres. Here, the climate is warm and temperate, with forests of pine, oak, rhododendron, walnut and poplar. Within this area are found the most populated areas such as the Kathmandu Valley and Pokhara. Next, continuing our shift northwards, come the Lesser Himalaya, where the climate is alpine and most of the indigenous forest has been cleared for cultivation by the industrious Nepalese. Only the steepest and most inaccessible tracts of forest remain and these are of spruce, birch, fir and juniper. Finally, we come to the Greater Himalaya, where the climate is arctic with perpetual snow. Here, there is little or no vegetation and there are only sparse populations of animals like ibex, snow leopard, bharal, Marco Polo sheep and yeti! Overall, 75% of the land area of Nepal is mountainous, but a trek through these mountains is not a wilderness experience until you reach the high Himalaya in the north, which form the border with Tibet . To illustrate this, consider the fact that out of an estimated total population (1991 Census) of 19.5 million, less than one million live in the Kathmandu Valley . The majority of the population live in rural communities spread throughout the land and there are villages at altitudes of more than 4000 metres in some of the high valleys.

Time Zone
The time in India is GMT +5:45 hours.

October-December and March-April are the best times to visit Nepal . These months, either side of the monsoon, are neither too hot nor too cold, offering the best conditions for outdoor activities. Pre-monsoon weather will give you the best of the flora in Nepal , with plants such as rhododendron and magnolia in full flower, while the post-monsoon months offer the clearest skies and the most settled weather.

Rough guide to temperatures March-April, November-December.


Maximum Day-time Temperature

Minimum Night-time Temperature

Kathmandu & lower valleys

+ 30º C (86º F)

+ 20º C (68º F)

4000 metres

+ 15º C (59º F)

- 5 º C (23 º F)

5500+ metres

+ 3º C (37º F)

- 25º C (13º F)

Cstoms, Religion & Dress
Nepal , and the Kathmandu Valley especially, is a region where the cultures of Buddhism and Hinduism have become almost indistinct. The result is a fabulous and sometimes confusing array of temples and shrines in the capital city, where it has been suggested that there are almost as many temples as people. Despite the large numbers of tourists who visit them, these temples are still places of worship, and many Nepalese attend them daily. Accordingly, you should be respectful and discreet, and not abuse the local peoples' readiness to allow visitors to enter and take photographs. Exactly what spiritual persuasion a particular temple is devoted to may not be immediately apparent. You should be aware of the fact that the cow is a sacred animal to Hindus, and no articles of leather may be worn inside their temples. Buddhists are renowned for their tolerance, but it is good practice to be on the look-out for any particular code of conduct being observed by the local visitors at a given temple or shrine.
Generally speaking the Nepalese are an easy-going and incredibly polite people, and welcome the many visitors to their small country with open arms. As a visitor you should repay this courtesy by respecting the wishes of locals who may not wish to have their photograph taken. If in doubt you can always ask - the result will be either a head turned away from you or a warm infectious smile. Other points of behaviour which are more applicable on trek, where you may find yourself taking tea in the house of a rural family, are that high caste Hindus cannot touch food or cooking/eating utensils that have been used by non-Hindus, and that Buddhists attach great significance to fires - you should not throw any rubbish onto the fire in a Sherpa house. This does not apply to trekking lodges, where the fire is not regarded as the heart of the home.

In the tourist area of Thamel you will see every manner of dress and here the general rule is the brighter the better. However it should be remembered when visiting other parts of the city and in less visited destinations around the country that the Nepalis generally do not wear short or revealing clothing.

Nepal ToursNepal 's unit of currency is the Rupee. It is not normally possible (and it is certainly not necessary) to purchase Nepalese currency outside the country. Your travel money should be carried in the form of cash or travellers cheques. Dollars and Sterling are readily exchanged. Credit cards can be used to purchase some goods in Kathmandu and are particularly useful for more expensive items such as carpets and Tanka paintings. Though regulations may vary from time to time, there is no restriction on the amount of hard currency you can bring into Nepal.

All nationalities need to obtain a visa for entry into Nepal . Rates vary depending on your nationality. Full details of current rates and the visa application process will be sent to you when we confirm your booking on a TBI trip. Plenty of time should be allowed to obtain your Nepalese visa if you are intending to apply for it by post. Applications usually take two to three weeks to process. Another option is to hand in your passport at a Nepalese Embassy in person, which will often then be processed overnight for you to collect next day.

You should visit your own doctor and dentist for a check-up prior to taking your trip to Nepal .
The following is a ROUGH GUIDE for immunization. (We must stress that this is only a basic guide to the most commonly required vaccinations for travel worldwide. You must seek and abide by the specific advice of your local doctor/medical professional).

(a) Polio (normally you will just need a booster.)
(b) Tetanus.
(c) Typhoid. A full course requires 2 injections separated by an interval of 4-6 weeks.
(d) Hepatitis (A) and (B).
(e) Anti-malarial prophylaxis: Please refer to your doctor for the most up to date information about anti-malarial medication for the areas that you will be visiting.
(f) Rabies pre-exposure vaccination. Please refer to your doctor for advice on whether you need rabies pre-exposure vaccination. In the unlikely case of your being bitten, this vaccination does not eliminate the need for urgent evacuation to a suitable medical facility for additional treatment,. However, it does simplify that additional treatment and also prolongs the period that you can safely delay before receiving post-exposure treatment.
Given enough notice, your doctor will be able to administer all the above vaccinations.

Additional Source of Information

Trekking and Climbing in Nepal . Steve Razzetti. New Holland .
Kathmandu and the Kingdom of Nepal . Lonely Planet Guide.
Trekking in the Nepal Himalaya . Stan Armington, Lonely Planet Guide.
Trekking in Nepal , West Tibet and Bhutan . Hugh Swift.
Trekking in Nepal . Stephen Bezruchka, new 6th edition.
Nepal Insight Guide (glossy guidebook, lovely photos)
The Trekking Peaks of Nepal . Bill O'Connor.
Adventure Treks Nepal . Bill O'Connor.
The Trekkers Handbook. Tom Gilchrist.

Nepal General 1:500,000.
A wide range of maps are available from booksellers in Kathmandu . However all clients are supplied with trek maps on arrival in Kathmandu.

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