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Know About Nepal

Know About Nepal

Know About Nepal

Nepal is one of the richest country in the world in terms of bio-diversity, due to its unique geographical position and altitudinal variation. 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 150 km resulting into climatic conditions from sub-tropical to arctic.

Nepal is multi-lingual, multi-cultural, multi-religious and multi-ethnic country. The total population of Nepal is 27 million and over one hundred castes and ethnic groups and over eight religious groups and ninety-two mother tongues were listed in the census 2001 (the latest census of Nepal). It is located between India in the south, east and west and China in the north, therefore it is also called a sandwiched between two countries. Moreover, it is the country of high Himalayan, mountains, artistic monuments and exotic wildlife. It offers a fantastic array of attractions for visiting tourists.

Nepal is the country of amazing extremes. There are the world highest mountains including Sagarmatha (Mt. Everest 8848 m) towering above populated valleys and forested plains in which the lordly tiger and trundling rhinoceros live. Enchants is everywhere, be it on the shoulders of high mountains, on terraced farmlands meticulously carved liked stairways out of hiss ridges, on cascading mountain rivulets and rushing rivers, or in forests full of wildlife, flowers and bird song. Nepal provides something for everybody, either for tourist, trekker, river runner, wildlife enthusiast, artists, scholar or the weary in search of a personal Shangrila.

Nepal is the best known as the home of Mt. Everest, the highest mountain on earth. It is the land of eight out of 14 highest peaks in the world over 8000m–Mt. Everest (8848m), Kanchenjunga (8586m),Lhotse (8516m), Makalu (8463m), Cho Oyu (8201m), Dhaulagiri (8167m), Manaslu (8163m) Annapurna (8091m).

Furthermore, there is much more to offer along with mountains, from jungle to steamy jungles of the plains to the highest point on earth the range of scenery is such a diverse and spectacular which offer an unforgettable experience to those who would like to venture out into the hills, therefore, it is also called the ‘Land of Paradise’ for tourists, treks and mountaineering expeditions.

The famous Himalayan range, favorable climate, the hospitality of the Nepalese people and their culture, the natural landscapes, mountains, rivers, glacial lakes, forests and wild animals are the major attractions. Nepal is a cosmopolitan mixture of diverse ethnic groups. With these all the features, the world renowned traveler writers have well admired to this country, as it has the most exhilarating titles in recognition of the cultural richness, like, living cultural museum, Shangri-La, roof of the world, birth place of the apostle of peace, country of living goddess, Himalayan pilgrimage, a tiny country of over 100 of ethnic groups and over120 spoken languages, the land of mysticism and exoticism, and of non-stop festival among other.

These are the explicit and self-explanatory. They tell to the world about the incomparable and prosperous cultural heritage of this country ‘Nepal’.

Nepal occupying only 0.1 percent of the total landmass of the earth is home to.
• 2 percent of all the flowering plants in the world
• 8 percent of the world’s population of birds (more than 848 species)
• 4 percent of mammals on earth
• 11 of the world 15 families of butterflies (more than 500 species)
• 600 indigenous plant families
• 319 species of exotic orchid

History of Nepal
The history of Nepal begins from 9th century BC, when the Kirats were the first rulers of this country. For the centuries, Nepal remained divided into many principalities Kirats ruled in the east, the Newars in Kathmandu valley, while Gurungs and Magars had occupied the mid-west. Then, the Lichchhavis had conquered Kirats in first century AD and ruled until 9th century AD. During this period, art thrived in Nepal and many beautiful woodcarvings and sculptures that are found in the country is associated to this era. Subsequently, the Thakuris had conquered Lichchhavis in 9th century AD and ruled until 13th century.

Afterward, in 1200 AD, the Malla again had conquered Lichchavis, who also said to have contributed a lot to the art and culture of Nepal. The Mallas mainly focused in Kathmandu valley. Then, again the Shah dynasty reigned over the Mallas, as Prithvi Narayan Shah, the king of Gorkha conquered Malla rulers in Kathmandu valley along with other small principalities and recognizing the threat of British Raj in India he unified all the principalities into one kingdom.

During the mid-19th century, exercising the absolute power Jung Bahadur Rana had become the first Prime Minster of Nepal and continuously, the Rana families had ruled the country over one century. The Ranas were overthrown in a democracy movement of the early 1950s and Nepal enjoyed a multiparty democracy for about 10 years and again it went through one party (Panchyat) system and it enjoyed a multiparty democracy since 1990. Nepal now is a Federal Democratic Republic state, since it was declared to be federal republic on May 28, 2008 in the first meeting of the Constituent Assembly.

Physical Features of Nepal:
Physical features of Nepal In short: ‘Unique bio-diversity’
Nepal covers an area of 147,181 square kilometers and stretches 145-241 kilometers north to south and 850 kilometers west to east. The country is located between India in the south and China in the north, at latitudes 26 and 30 degrees north and longitudes 80 and 88 degrees east. Nepal is topographically divided into three regions: The Himalaya to the north, the hills consisting of the Mahabharat range and the Churia hills in the middle and the Terai to the south. Elevations are varid in the country.

The highest point is Mt. Everest (8,848m) in the north and the lowest point (70 m above sea level) is located at Kechana Kalan of Jhapa Disttrict. Altitude increases as you travel south to north. Int eh north temperatures are below 40 degrees Celsius and in the Terai, temperatures rise to 40 degrees Celsius in the summer. During June July and August, the kingdom is influenced by monsoon clouds.
The country can be divided into three main geographical regions:

Himalayan Region
The altitude of this region ranges between 4877 meters and 8848 meters with the now line running around 488848 meters. It includes 8 of the existing 14 summits in the world which exceed the altitude of 8000 meters.

They are:
1. Sagarmatha (Mt. Everest) – 8848 m
2. Kangchenjunga – 8586 m,
3. Lhotse – 8516 m,
4. Makalu – 8463 m,
5. Cho Oyo – 8201 m,
6. Dhaulagiri – 8167 m,
7. Manaslu – 8163 m,
8. Annapurna – 8091 m.

Mountain Region
This region accounts for about 64 percent of total land area. The Mahabharat range that rises up to 4877 meters forms it. The lower Churia range lies in the south, the altitude varies from 610 meters to 1524 meters.

Terai Region
The lowland Terai region, which has a width of about 26 to 32 kilometers and an altitude maximum of 305 meters, it occupies about 17 percent of total land area of the country. Kechanakawal, the lowest point of the country situated in Jhapa district (In the eastern Tarai/part of Nepal) lies in this region, it has an altitude of 70 meters.

As there is no seasonal constraint in Nepal, you can travel at any season around in Nepal.

Nepal in brief Location:
Between India and the Tibetan autonomous region of the Republic of China

Area: 147,181 square kilometer

Capital: Kathmandu

People: More than 100 ethnic groups (59 yet recognized by government) and 92 spoken languages

Political System: Multi party democracy, Federal Republic democratic country

Topography: From the world deepest gorge Kali-Gandaki to the highest point on earth -The Everest

Vegetation: As per the size of the country, Nepal possesses some of the most outstanding bio-diversity in the world, ranging from sub-tropical rain-forests to Alpine deserts.

Weather: Climate ranges from Tropical in the low lands to Arctic in higher altitudes.

Season: Winter (December to February), Summer (March to May), Monsoon (June to August), Autumn (September to November) Monsoon: mostly rains, making the following day crispy clean and fresh. Most of the northern belt of the trans-Himalayan Zone is rain-shadowed and ideal for trekking.

National Bird: Lophophorus pheasant (Danfe)

National Flower:
Rhododendron-Arboreum (Lali Gurans)

World Heritage sites (Cultural)
• Swoyambhu
• Boudha
• Changunarayan
• Pashupatinath
• Kathmandu Durbar Square
• Patan Durbar Square
• Bhaktapur Durbar Square
• World heritage sites (Natural)
• Everest National Park (1148 square kilometer
• Royal Chitwan National Park (932 square kilometer)

National Parks:
• Royal Bardia National Park (968 square kilometer)
• Langtang National Park (1710 square kilometer)
• Shey – Phoksundo National Park (3555 square kilometer)
• Rara National Park (106 square kilometer)
• Khaptad National Park (225 square kilometer)
• Makalu-Barun National (2330 square kilometer)
• Wildlife Reserves
• Shukla Phanta Reserve (499 square kilometer)
• Parsa Reserve (499 square kilometer)
• Koshi-Tappu Reserve (175 square kilometer)

Conservation Areas:
Annapurna (2600 square kilometer)
Makalu-Barun (2330 square kilometer)

Hunting Reserve:
Dhorpatan (1325 square kilometer)
Endanger Species
Tiger, Rhino, Snow leopard, Clouded leopard, Red panda, Brown bear, Asamese macaque, Gangetic dophin, Wolf, wild elephant, Giant horn-bill, swamp deer, wild yak, Nayan, Tebetan antelope, Black buck, four horned antelope, musk deer pigmy hog, Haspid harem Pangolin, Gharial, Indian bustard Saras crane, Impean pheasant, Python.

Nepal harbors one of the world best habitants for one horned rhino, royal Bengal tiger, snow leopard, clouded-leopard, Red panda, blue-sheep and long snouted fish eating Gharial. Other wildlife includes wild elephant, buffaloes, bisons, blue bull, brown bear, sloth bear, leopard, crocodiles and many varies of cat, dog, deer and antelope families and 840 different species of wet land, migratory and residential birds.

A living cultural Heritage:
The heritages in Nepal are alive and dynamic. Shmanism, Pananimism and witch craft are still practiced in remote regions. Temples, shrines, monuments and monasteries with devotees burning butter-lamps, singling hymns, chiming temple bells and playing drums are spotted everywhere as a living cultural heritage.

Travel Notes:
Visa: Available in Nepalese Embassies and Nepalese Consulates abroad or on arrival at Tribhuvan International Airport in Kathmandu.

Currency: The currency of Nepal is the Rupee, which is divided into 100 paisa. The Rupee comes in denominations of 1, 2, 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 500 and 1000.

Time: Nepal time is 5 hours 45 minutes ahead of GMT.

Tourism Services:
Trekking Services: one of the best in the world with treks guided by world renowned Sherpas.

White Water River Rafting: One of the best in Asia in terms of quality water rafting and professionals.

Mountaineering: One of the worlds most professional mountaineering services available here in Nepal.

Jungle Safaries: One of the best jungle Safari operations in Asia.

Helicopter Services: Most tourist destinations are easily accessible by a variety of helicopter services.

Charter Air Services: Permission for chartered air services is easily obtained from the Department of Civil Aviation.

Popular Tourist Destinations in Nepal (By air / Road)
Gorkha, Pokhara, Baglung, Tansen, Lumbini, Janakpur, Bardia, Sukla-Phanta, Chitwan, Dhankuta, Dharan, Ilam, Dolakha, Koshi Tappu are to name a few.

Popular Tourist Destinations (By trek):
Everest Region: Everest Base Camp Trekking, Everest View Trekking, Classic Everest Trekking, Everest 3 Passes Trek, Gokyo Lake Everest Base Camp Trekking, Gokyo Lake Chola Pass EBC Trekking, Gokyo Valley Renjo La Pass Trekking, Gokyo Lake Trekking, Rolwaling Tashi Lapcha Pass Trek.

Annapurna Region: Annapurna Base Camp Trekking, Ghorepani Poon Hill Trekking, Annapurna Circuit Trekking, Jomsom Muktinath Trekking, Tilicho Lake Trekking, Narphu Valley Trekking.

Langtang Region: Langtang Valley Trekking, Langtang Gosaikunda & Helambu Trekking, Langtang Ganjala Pass Trekking, Helambu Trekking.

Makalu Region: Makalu Base Camp Trek Via Arun Valley.

Mustang Region: Upper Mustang Trekking, Damodar Kunda Trekking.

Manaslu Region: Manaslu Rupina La Pass Circuit Trek, Manaslu Larkya La Pass Circuit Trek, Tsum Valley Trekking.

Dhaulagiri Region: Dhaulagiri Circuit Trekking.

Kanchenjunga Region: Kanchenjunga Base Camp Trekking.

Dolpo Region: Upper Dolpo Trekking, Lower Dolpo Trekking, Jumla Rara Lake Trekking.

Ganesh Himal Region: Ganesh Himal Trekking are to name a few.

Some Dos and Don’ts
With its diverse ethnic groups and traditional beliefs, Nepal has numerous cultural practices that may appear unusual to a person on his/her first visit to the country. However, to enjoy your stay in this remarkable country of white Himalayas and sparkling rivers, it is important to take into consideration the different cultural aspects of the country. Here is a list of things which may be helpful to you.

The form of greeting in Nepal is namasteĀ and is performed by joining the palms together.

Before entering a Nepalese home, temple, and stupa remember to remove your shoes.

Be careful not to use your spoon, fork or hands being used for your eating to touch other food, plate, cooking utensil or the serving dish. Do not eat from other people plate and do not drink from other people bottle or glass. It is considered impure by the Nepalese.

Never touch anything with your feet. This is considered an offence among Nepalese.

While travelling, dress appropriately. Women should especially avoid dressing in skimpy outfits.

Seek permission first before entering a Hindu temple. Many Hindu temples do not allow westerners to enter.

Leather articles are prohibited to be taken inside the temple precinct.

Walking around temples or stupas is traditionally done clockwise.

Take photographs only after receiving permission for the object or person being photographed.

Public displays of affection between man and woman are frowned upon.

Remember, many times, when a person shakes his head from left to right, he may mean Yes.

Develop a genuine interest to meet and talk to Nepalese people and respect their local customs.
• 2 percent of all the flowering plants in the world
• 8 percent of the world’s population of birds (more than 848 species)
• 4 percent of mammals on earth
• 11 of the world’s 15 families of butterflies (more than 500 species)
• 600 indigenous plant families
• 319 species of exotic orchid