Thursday, June 18, 2015

Reasons why you SHOULD VISIT NEPAL now | Post Quake

In April and May 2015 two earthquakes of a magnitude of 7.8 and 7.3 respectively shook parts of Nepal, some of which were devastated; some of which remain unscathed. For this reason Nepal still has a lot to offer and is still a fantastic place to visit.

Nepal #stillSmiling | Hari lost his homestay in Gorkha to the quake - his stance, "well, will go back to tending cows for a while, will rebuild the homestay and then the tourists will come back". courtesy: Gorakh Photography -
Witnessing the amazing reconstruction of the Himalayan nation has now become one of the top cultural experiences. Combining faith, resilience and the work of expert artisans, who have been trained over centuries in traditional arts, Nepal is rebuilding itself quickly. It is certainly a rare opportunity to experience this anywhere in the world. Less than two months after the quakes hit, cultural icons like Boudhanath Stupa in Kathmandu have almost been completely restored. 

Nepal's nature and its breathtaking landscape, which was incidentally created by the very pressure on the fault lines that caused the two earthquakes, is unchanged. It's still stunning and remains one of the top adventurers' playgrounds of the world. 

The people of Nepal have also not changed - they are still one of the friendliest and warmest people on the planet. And they will certainly be your best guides to show you the resilience and strength of the Nepali people, brought out in great force by this natural incident. We Nepalis recognise that we live on a fault line and accept the earthquake to be part of nature's way of shaping our nation. This is part of us. We are the guardians of this space. 

If this is not enough reason to come to Nepal, here are some more important reasons, which you might want to consider: 
  • Ethical tourism provides one of the largest sources of foreign revenue to Nepal. Keeping this industry alive is key to rebuilding and survival. 
  • A large percentage of tourism jobs are held by people from quake-affected areas, and it’s said that one tourist provides nine people with jobs
  • The World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) 2014 report indicated that in 2014 Travel & Tourism directly supported 487,500 jobs (3.5% of total employment). This was expected to rise by 4.0% in 2015 and rise by 3.0% pa to 681,000 jobs (3.9% of total employment) in 2025. However, these estimates could be compromised by the impact of the earthquake. The WTTC estimate includes employment by hotels, travel agencies, airlines and other passenger transportation services (excluding commuter services). 
  • Many peoples’ livelihoods depend on tourism, including those in hotels, transport companies, restaurants, airports, taxis, gear shops, souvenir stalls, not to mention the farmers, who grow the food to supply the industry. The multiplier effect of every dollar spent on travel in Nepal is immense. 
  • Tourism takes money directly into remote and regional communities, so it is a powerful distributor of wealth, which does not rely solely on the ‘trickle down’ effect. 
  • Jobs and currency are the most needed long-term items for a sustainable rebuild. 
  • At least 2.2 million Nepalis — nearly 10 percent of the population — work abroad, according to the Nepal Institute of Development Studies. And that number doesn’t include those who leave to work without being registered as doing so. 
  • And we must not forget that people still visit countries like New Zealand, Japan, Indonesia or the US state of California, which are all at risk of experiencing an earthquake.

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