Nepal, the land of brave warriors, “Gurkhas” is one of the most sought after destination for vacationing or holidaying. This is mostly because of the incomparable natural beauty, rich cultural heritages, and moreover the always smiling and friendly Nepalese people well known for their kind and hospitable nature.
Nepal is a landlocked country sharing boundaries with China (Tibet) to the north and India to the south, east and west. Occupying only 0.03% of the world’s and 0.3% of Asia’s land mass, Nepal is home to eight of the tallest mountains in the world having height more than 8,000 meters. Mount Everest (locally known as Sagarmatha), the highest peak in the world is in Nepal. Tilicho Lake, the lake situated in the highest altitude of the world is in Nepal.
Nepal is the birth place of Lord Gautam Buddha. Lumbini, the place where he was born is the greatest pilgrimage for all Buddhist over the world and equally important for Hindu’s faith.
Nepal is geographically divided into three major landscapes. On the north, most of the mountains sit and is known as Himalaya (Mountainous region). This region is the major source of fresh drinking water. On the south, the land is plain and most suitable for agriculture, known as Terai region. In between is the terrains known as Pahad (Hilly region). This region has vast tropical forest along with wildlife and beautiful valleys.
Nepal is majorly an agriculture based country and tourism, export of herbal products and textile has significant contribution to the national economy.
Nepal is commonly known as a “garden of different ethnicity”. The 27 million of the population is composed of dozens of ethnic groups. To the north, Sherpas, known for their climbing skills live in the Himalayas. Gurung, Tamang, Rai, Limbu, Magar are residents of hilly region. Newars are indigenous to Kathmandu valley. Brahmins and Chhetris abode over most of the places in hilly region, valleys and Terai region. Maithili, Bhojpuri, Tharu community lives in Terai region. Though having large number ethnicity and diverse culture, there are always been unparalleled harmony and tolerance among people.
Along with different ethnic groups, Nepal is also a home to hundreds of languages. Nepali, Maithali, Bhojpuri, Tharu, Tamang, Newari (Nepal Bhasa), etc. are the most commonly spoken languages. However, Nepali is the national/official language and almost every Nepalese communicates in this language. A large population can easily understand and communicate in English and Hindi language as well.
Nepal recently has been recognized as a secular nation. The major population follows Hinduism (81.3%) followed by Buddhism (9%). Islam (4.4%) is another major religion followed by Christianity (1.4%). All of these religions have co-existed in harmony since period unimaginable. Major pilgrimages of Hindus Pashupatinath, Muktinath, Janaki Temple along with Buddhist pilgrimages Lumbini, Swyambhunath, Bouddhanath are the major attraction for both religious and other travellers.
Art & Culture
Art and Culture in Nepal is largely based on Hinduism and Buddhism. Though other also exists, they mostly fall under minorities. It consists of architecture, music, dance, festivals, etc. and are unique to rest of the world. Kathmandu is the art and cultural capital of the country. Beautiful scroll paintings, murals, stone carvings, wood carvings and statutes make this place unique and traveller’s paradise. When in Kathmandu and its outskirts, visitors get to witness different festive celebrations and occasions throughout the year.
Though a small country, there is huge difference in climate between three major geographic areas. From a tropical heat in the Terai to temperate climate with warm summer and cool winters in Hills to freezing cold climate throughout the year in the Himalayas, Nepal offers wide range of vegetation as well. Monsoon comes between June to August.