Nepal Travel Information

Nepal-Travel-Information

Nepal-Travel-Information

Nepal at glance Nepal

Nepal is one of the richest countries in the world in terms of bio-diversity due to its unique geographical and altitudinal variation. The elevation of the country ranges from 60m 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–occupying only 0.03% of the earth is home to:                                                 

  • 2% of all the flowering plants in the world
  • 8% of the world’s population of birds (more than 875 species)
  • 4% of mammals on earth
  • 11 of the world’s 15 families of butterflies 9more than 500 species)
  • 600 indigenous plant families
  • 319 species of exotic orchids

Official Name      :               Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal

Location                :               Situated between China in the north and India in the south, east and west

Area                       :               Total: 1, 47,181 sq. km

Capital                   :               Kathmandu

Population            :               28.5 million

People                   :               Nepal has more than 101 ethnic groups and 92 spoken languages.

Language             :               Nepali is the national language; travel trade people understand and speak English as well.

Time Zone            :               5 hours 45 minutes ahead of GMT

Religion                 :               Hinduism (major) and Buddhism, Islam and Catholic.

Currency              :               Nepali Rupee (approximately US$ 1 equals Rs. 87 as of May 2012)

Political System  :               Federal Democratic Republic

Climate: Nepal has four major seasons

  • Winter: December-February, (2) Spring: March-May, (3) Summer: June-August, (4) Autumn: September-November. Monsoons are from June till mid September. Nepal can be visited the whole year round.

What to Wear: Light weight clothing is recommended from May through October. Warm garments are required in October- March. An umbrella or a raincoat is a must for the rainy season.

Nepal’s Unique Treasures

  • Everest – Highest Point on Earth
  • Kumari – The Living Goddess
  • Lumbini- Birth Place of Lord Buddha

 Travel Information

 ime and Business Hours

Nepal is five hours 45 minutes ahead of GMT.

Business hours within the Valley:

Government offices are open from 10 am to 5 p.m. from Sunday through Thursday and close at 3pm on Friday in the Kathmandu Valley. During the winter, they close at 4 pm. Most Business offices are open from 10 am to 5 p.m. Sunday through Friday. Embassies and international organizations are open from 9 am to 5 pm Monday through Friday. Most shops open after 10 am and close at about 8 pm and are usually closed on Saturdays.

Business hours outside the Valley:

Government offices outside Kathmandu valley open from 10 am to 5 p.m. from Sunday through Thursday. On Fridays they remain open until 3 pm. Banks are open from Sunday through Thursday from 10 am to 3 pm. On Fridays, banks remain open until 12 pm only. Business offices are open from 10 am to 5 pm Sunday through Friday. Recently many private banks have re-organized to have different branches open at various different times making banking hours longer. If one branch is closed another will be open.

Holidays:

Nepal observes numerous holidays, at the least a couple in a month. So please check the holiday calendar. The longest holiday in Nepal is during the Dashain festival in late September or October. Government offices observe all the national holidays and banks observe most of them. Businesses observe major holidays only.

Communication Facilities

Postal Services:

The Central Post Office located near Dharahara Tower, is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday through Friday. The counters are open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and provide stamps, postcards and aerograms. Post Restante is available from Sunday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Express Mail Service (EMS) is available at GPO and at Thamel, Basantapur and airport postal counters.

Telephone Services:

Telephone and fax services are available at the Nepal Telecommunications Corporation at Tripureshwor. Hotels and private communication centers provide long distance telephone and fax facilities. For calling from outside, country code for Nepal is 977 and the area code for Kathmandu is 1.

Internet Services:

There are countless Internet cafes and communication centers have opened up in the Valley and around the country. Visitors only have to find a place they are most comfortable in to use the facilities to keep in touch with home. Internet services are also offered by hotels.

Media:

Nepali media has made a gigantic leap ahead in just a few years’ time and what used to be a controlled and tight knit community, is no more. The government audio and television news networks are Radio Nepal and Nepal Television respectively. However, numerous FM radio stations and regional television stations are dominating the market. Major Nepali daily newspapers are Gorkhapatra, Kantipur, Rajdhani, Samarcharpatra and Annapurna Post while the English dailies are The Rising Nepal, The Kathmandu Post and The Himalayan Times. A number of other newspapers and magazines are also available.

Electricity:

Major towns have electricity and the voltage available is 220-volts and 50 cycles. Load shedding is a seasonal phenomenon during the dry season and eases off once it begins to rain. However, most major hotels have uninterrupted power supply through their own generators.

Foreign Currency and Credit Cards

Payment in hotels, travel agencies, and airlines are made in foreign exchange. Credit cards like American Express, Master and Visa are widely accepted at major hotels, shops, and restaurants. 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 hard currency before leaving the country. However, only 10 percent of the total amount may be converted by the bank. ATM is widely in use in Kathmandu.

Major banks, hotels and exchange counters at Tribhuvan International Airport provide services for exchanging foreign currency.

Exchange rates are published in English dailies such as The Rising Nepal, The Kathmandu Post and The Himalayan Times. Nepalese Rupees are found in denominations of Rupees 1000, 500, 100, 50, 20, 10, 5, 2 and 1. Coins are found in denominations of Rupees 5, 2 and 1. One rupee equals 100 paisa.

Visa Information

What are needed to get a visa?

A valid passport and one passport size photo with a light background. Immigration Department has not specified the size of the passport-size photo. Visa can be obtained only through payment of cash in the following currency: Euro, Swiss Franc, Pound Sterling, US dollar, Australian dollar, Canadian dollar, Hong-kong dollar, Singapore dollar and Japanese Yen.

Credit Card, Indian currency or Nepalese currency are not accepted for payment of Visa fee.

  1. Tourist Visa

Visa Facility Duration Fee

Multiple entry 15 days US$ 25 or equivalent convertible currency

Multiple entry 30 days US$ 40 or equivalent convertible currency

Multiple entry 90 days US$ 100 or equivalent convertible currency

  1. Gratis (Free) Visa
  • For first visit in one visa year (January to December) , gratis visa for 30 days is available only for nationals of South Asian countries like Bangladesh, Bhutan, Maldives, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. However, visa can be extended from the Immigration Department on payment of visa fee as specified above.
  • Indian nationals do not require visa to enter into Nepal.

However, nationals of the following countries will not get visa on arrival at the immigration entry points of Nepal:- Nigeria, Ghana, Zimbabwe, Swaziland, Cameroon, Somalia, Liberia, Ethiopia, Iraq, Palestine, Afghanistan. They need to obtain visa from Nepalese Embassies or Diplomatic Missions in their respective countries prior to their visit to Nepal.

For Visa Extension: Tourists can stay for a maximum of 150 days in a visa year (Jan 1 to Dec 31) .

FOR INDIAN NATIONALS:

As per the Nepalese Immigration, Indian Nationals Traveling to Nepal must possess any One of the following documents-

  1. Passport
  2. Driving License with photo
  3. Photo Identity card issued by a Government Agency
  4. Ration Card with Photo
  5. Election Commission Card with Photo
  6. Identity Card issued by Embassy of India in Kathmandu
  7. Identity Card with Photo issued by Sub- Divisional Magistrate or any other officials above his rank

However, please check with your nearest travel agents for documents required by the Indian Immigration for Indians traveling to Nepal.

International flights to Nepal

Nepal Airlines is the national flag carrier of Nepal with flights to/ from Delhi, Kuala Lumpur, Dubai, Bangkok, Doha and Hong Kong. Other International airlines operating from and to Kathmandu are Air Arabia (Sharjah), Air China (Lhasa, Chengdu), Bahrain Air (Bahrain), Biman Bangladesh (Dhaka), China Eastern Airlines (Kunming), China Southern Airlines (Guangzhou), Dragon Air (Hong Kong), Druk Air (Delhi, Paro), Etihad Airways (Abu Dhabi), Flydubai (Dubai), GMG Airlines (Dhaka), Gulf Air (Bahrain), Indian Airlines (Delhi, Kolkata, Varanasi), Indigo Airlines (Delhi), Jet Airways (Delhi, Mumbai), Jet Lite (Delhi), Korean Air (Seoul), Pakistan International Airlines (Karachi, Islamabad), Qatar Airways (Doha), Silk Air (Singapore), Spicejet (Delhi), Thai Airways (Bangkok)and United Airways (Dhaka)

Airport Tax:

Airport tax is already included in the international air tickets, therefore, passengers departing for international destinations from the Tribhuvan International Airport in Kathmandu do not need to pay airport tax at the airport during departure. However, for domestic travel within Nepal one has to pay airport tax at the domestic airport before departure.

Travelling by Road/Entry Points

All visitors entering Nepal by land must use these designated entry points and may not enter from any other point:

  • Nepal-India border
  • Kakarbhitta
  • Birgunj
  • Belahiya, Bhairahawa
  • Nepalgunj
  • Dhangadi
  • Mahendra Nagar, Kanchanpur (Recently named as Bhimdutta Nagar)
  • Kodari, Nepal-China border

Overland tourists entering Nepal with their vehicles must possess an international carnet.

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