What is the essence of India? Probably the answer is its age old cultural traditions, faith in eastern religion, art and architecture, and temples and ancient palaces. Come to us, we take you those distinct historical moments and cultural sites of India and help you to discover the essence of India.
The tour cover from the intricate saris of Rajasthan to the beautiful symmetry of the Taj Mahal. Himalayan Glacier’s journey will be a photographer’s delight and the perfect introduction to India. You will walk along the Ghats on the River Ganges to encounter the spiritual heart of Hinduism in Varanasi and get off the beaten path exploring quaint temples in rural villages.
The essence of India tour traverses through India’s vibrant cities discovering ancient forts and temples, reveling in the beauty of Taj Mahal, exploring the erotic sculptures of Khajuraho, sailing over the Ganges in venerable Varanasi and exploring the nation’s rich cultural heritage.
Taste India’s incredible tapestry of life with Himalayan Glacier’s profound team.
Kathmandu: Agitating locals of Hanumandhoka have handed over a memorandum to Axel Plathe, the head of the Unesco Nepal, appealing for attention concerning an agreement reached by the Kathmandu Metropolitan City (KMC) with a private body to merge the tourist fees of the Hanumandhoka Durbar Square and the Dharahara.
The 10-point memorandum argues that the agreement should not be materialized as it is not fair to give equal status to the Hanumandhoka Durbar Square—a world heritage site identified by the Unesco-and the Dharahara, a nine-storey view tower constructed by Nepal’s first Prime Minister Bhimsen Thapa.
“Moreover, authorities can’t make it obligatory for tourists visiting the Dharahara to go to the Hanumandhoka Durbar Square, and vice versa,” the memorandum reads, stating that the one-door ticketing system would rather irritate tourists. “The world heritage site of Hanumandhoka should not be handed over to a profit-oriented private company.”
Stating that the hike in existing tourist fees would discourage the tourists from visiting the heritage site, as the authorities have yet to build basic infrastructure including an adequate number of toilets in the area, the locals also called on Plathe to take necessary steps to press the KMC and concerned stakeholders to dismiss the agreement.
The agreement, which was slated to be implemented from May 1, has been halted due to a public furor. Several meetings of the locals with the KMC have been unyielding.
Kathmandu: The wait is over. After a month of walking and acclimatizing, hoards of Everest aspirants are inching closer to their dreams of reaching the top of the world.
According to senior mountaineering officials, weathermen have forecast the “fair weather window” from May 18 to 25 for Everest ascent this spring expedition.
The 8,848-m Mt Everest, or Sagarmatha, saw its first spring summit this year on May 10. “As weather was partly fair, eleven rope-fixing Sherpas reached the top at 11:30 am,” said Ang Tshiring Sherpa, chairman of Asian Trekking.
On May 11, Spanish national David Liano succeeded Everest with his companion high-altitude climbing Sherpa Samden Bhote despite high winds. Both reached the summit at 08:05 am.
At least 43 individuals, including 16 foreigners, have already climbed the Everest as of Friday, according to Gyanendra Shrestha, an official of the Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation. “Although there was sporadic climbing as of Friday, Everest will see a beeline of climbers to their way up to the mountain from Saturday onwards,” Shrestha said.
Around 670 individuals, including 315 foreigners are in a bid to climb Mt Everest. Last spring, there were 560 individuals, including 335 foreigners, but only 181 made to the top. Last year, Everest witnessed a “traffic jam” due to small weather of window and bad weather had prevented rope-fixing work. “As fair weather has been forecast for the next week, we are expecting such a traffic jam will not occur this time.”
In addition, Sherpa said there are two separate ropes fixed—one for climbing and another for descending-at the Hillary Step, a 40-ft wall of rock just below the Everest , which is the most difficult climbing section. “Last year, traffic jam occurred as there was only one rope or ladder at the Hillary Step,” Sherpa said.
Eighty-one-year-old Nepali mountaineer Min Bahadur Sherchan and 80-year-old Japanese Yuichiro Miura are set to make an assault on Everest to secure the title of the world’s oldest person to scale the world’s highest peak. Officials said Miura is at Camp 2, while Sherchan has reached the base camp.
Sherchan had scaled Mt Everest on May 25, 2008, at the age of 76 years and 340 days and was officially recognized as the oldest person to climb the mountain by the Guinness World Records in November 2009. Sherchan had replaced Miura in the Guinness Records. Miura had first climbed the peak in 2003 at the age of 70. He climbed Everest again in May 2008 when he was 75, but this time failed to set a record as he reached the summit a day after Sherchan achieved the feat at 76.
Sudarshan Gautam, a Nepali Canadian, plans to become the first amputee to climb the mountain to spread the message that “disability is not inability”. Gautam, 30, who lost both his hands at the age of in an accident, will climb Everest without the use of prosthetic limbs.
Meanwhile, Phurba Tashi Sherpa made his 20th Everest ascent on May 10, according to Ang Tshiring Sherpa. “He has planned to climb Everest for 21st time in a few days to equalize the world set by Apa Sherpa,” said Ang Tshiring. “And, if things go as planned, Phurba could make his third attempt this season to secure the world record title of the most Everest ascents.”
Apa is the only man in the history to reach the top of the world 21 times. Phurba climbed Everest three times in the 2007 season alone, and twice in 2011.
Actress Nisha Adhikari and actor Arjun Karki are other aspirants awaiting favorable weather window. According to Shrestha, Karki plans to climb within a few days, while Adhikari plans to climb towards the end of the season.
Spaniard Carlos Pauner is aiming to summit Everest and accomplish his pursuit of climbing all eight-thousanders without oxygen, according to explorersweb.com.
According to the website, Pakistani Siblings Mirza Ali and Samina Baig are climbing under the slogan “Gender Equality”. They are part of the Seven Summit Treks Everest expedition. Samina Baig is the first Pakistani female to attempt, Everest while her brother Mirza Ali wants to reach the summit without using supplemental oxygen.
Three Sherpas and a foreigner have lost their lives at Everest so far this climbing season. Fifty-year-old Russian climber Alex Bolotov died last Wednesday in Khumbu icefall at 5600-metre, according to government officials.
Kathmandu: Turkish Airlines, the world’s fourth biggest carrier in terms of destinations, on Saturday officially announced direct Kathmandu-Istanbul flights.
It will be flying four weekly flights — Sunday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday — on the route from September 1. The carrier will use its wide-body Airbus A330-200 aircraft on the sector. The Kathmandu-Istanbul flight will be the longest non-stop commercial flight — seven and half hours — from Nepal to Europe.
After Austrian Airlines discontinued its service to Nepal on May 17, 2007, there was no scheduled direct flight from Kathmandu to Europe. Currently, Dutch airline ArkeFly serves charter service from Amsterdam to Kathmandu.
“As per our goal to become the world’s largest airline network, it’s an opportunity for us to connect Nepal with Europe,” said Adnan Aykac, general manager of Turkish Airlines for Northern and Eastern India. “We have targeted 95 percent transit passengers for Europe and the United States from Nepal.”
The carrier currently serves 223 destinations in 99 countries and plans to add 30 more destinations by 2013. “Our focus on Nepal will be bringing high-end tourists with better and affordable airfares,” said Aykac.
Nepal and Turkey signed an air service agreement (ASA) in September 2010. The ASA allows the two countries to operate 14 flights per week between Kathmandu and Istanbul.
The carrier has appointed Zenith Travels as general sales agent (GSA) in Nepal. “It is great news not only for the tourism industry, but also for trade between Nepal and Europe,” said Joy Dewan, group managing director of Zenith Travels.
The government statistics show Nepal’s growing trade with Turkey. In the first nine months of the current fiscal year, exports to Turkey grew by 188.2 percent. Traditional handicrafts, yarns and fabrics and woolen carpets are among the major exports to the country. The government has also initiated the process to sign a bilateral trade agreement with Turkey.
Kathmandu: With an aim to boost domestic tourism in Mid- and Far-Western regions, Paschim Mahila Jagaran Samuha, is organizing a tourism fair in the Capital from May 24-26.
The fair to be held in City Hall, Bhrikutimandap, will promote explored and unexplored tourism destinations of the regions. In a statement, the organizing committee said the three-day exhibition is expected to expose potential tourism sites in Mid- and Far-Western regions to national as well as foreign travelers.
The fair, slated to begin with a cultural programme and exhibition of unique traditions in the regions, will move to a photo exhibition and screening of documentaries on tourism destinations and hospitality offered in the area.
Various stalls specialized particularly in food delicacies, customs and traditions, among others, will be set up to inform visitors on the second and third days of the fair.
“Despite the regions’ richness in natural resources, very little has been done so far towards their promotion as a potential tourism destination,” read the statement. “The fair, therefore, aims at informing people in Kathmandu and other areas about the regions’ specialty in tourism.”
Insights on natural and historical sites, including Mugu’s Rara Lake, Achham’s Ramaroshan, Baitadi’s Melauli Bhagwati, Bhuvaneshwor Cave, Kaankre Bihar of Surkhet and Dolpa’s She Foksundo Lake, among others, will be the major attractions.
Browse Himalayan Glacier this spring and unleash the passion of adventure in the Himalayas.
The Everest Base Camp Trek via Gokyo Lakes trip takes adventurous trekkers to fabulous Gokyo Valley, source of grand Dudh Koshi River – the large Ngojumba Glacier, the famous Cho La pass, and the celebrated view points of Gokyo Ri and Kala Patthar along with Everest Base Camp.
The trek further traverses through the landmarks of Everest region in the company of majestically soaring mountains, friendly Sherpas, colorful monasteries and prayer flags, the Namche Bazzar, the Sagarmatha National Park, and many more. Gokyo, a hidden valley with gorgeous blue lakes in the lap of Himalaya has its own reputation among the adventurous souls.
Many trekkers crave to visit the Gokyo valley as a side trip during their Everest Base Camp Trek and they feel their Everest trek incomplete if they happen to miss the trip to Gokyo Valley, Gokyo Peak, and the famous pass, Cho La. The entire area is blessed with abounding natural beauty of shimmering Lakes.
Beyond peace of mind at the tranquil appearance of the glacial Lakes, trekker can enjoy 360 degree panoramic views of four above 8000 m massifs and other mountain ranges from the best view point of Everest Region, the Gokyo Ri – because panorama from here is more spectacular than that from Kala Patthar viewpoint.
Join Himalayan Glacier’s expert team that has scaled the highest peak of the world and its base camp in number of times since 1992. We provide international quality services and enhance to experience trek of a life time.
Kathmandu: A Saudi Arabian woman was among 64 people who successfully scaled Mount Everest on Saturday from Nepal’s side of the mountain, according to mountaineering officials.
An official with Nepal’s Mountaineering Department, Tilak Padney, said that 35 foreigners accompanied by 29 Nepalese Sherpa guides reached the 29,035-foot peak on Saturday morning after climbing all night from the highest camp on South Col, the pass between Everest and a neighboring mountain.
All the climbers were reported to be safe.
The Saudi climber, Raha Moharrak, is the first Saudi woman to scale the world’s highest peak. She is 25, and now lives in Dubai, according to the BBC.
Everest can be climbed from either Nepal or Tibet.
May is the most popular month for Everest climbs because weather tends to be more favorable then.
Source: The New York Times
Kathmandu: Going for a trip and returning home empty hand is a sure letdown for relatives and friends. It’s not only about the gift, it is also about the visited place’s significance. This tradition of buying, collecting and distributing souvenirs is a way of keeping memories alive.
Nepal, a tourist destination for many, is rich in culture and tradition. It has its own history which people from around the world are keen to explore. There are various items in Nepali market which become a must-buy item for foreigners. These items are available in every small shop around Thamel, Basantapur, Patan and Bhaktapur. Apart from these local markets, there are shopping arcades inside luxury hotels.
There are various items in the market to attract tourists. Healing bowls, wind chimes, prayer wheels, khukuris (national weapon of Nepal), thangkas, images of different gods and goddesses, gems, puppets et cetera are some of the items that attract tourists. “Among these varieties, most of the tourists prefer buying statues of Buddha irrespective of religious belief,” reveals Rajiv Pandey, the Proprietor at Kastamandap Handicraft.
Zhang Jesse, a tourist from China who was buying khukuris shared, “I heard about khukuris from my friends and the Internet and I wanted to keep a piece for myself. I also want to present it as a gift to my friends in China.”
Hari Chandra Shrestha, the Proprietor at Thamel Khukukri House, Thamel, says that there are varieties of khukuris in the market. Sirupate, Bhojpuri, Afghani, American Eagle, Kothimora are some of the designs available. “Among these designs, the British prefer Kothimora as it is made of pure silver and its cover is hand carved. The history of the brave Gurkhas are known to most of them, so they prefer buying it,” said Shrestha.
Thangkas, paintings on silk or cotton with embroidery, are a famous items among tourists too. Pictures of Buddha’s preaching, wheel of life, Hindu and Buddhist deities are among the popular designs made in thangkas.
There are more tourists in the country during the month of March, April, May, September, October and November. Favorable environment and festivals during these months attract tourists in Nepal. “There is an increase in business during these months as this is the perfect season for their visit. Otherwise there are only a few customers buying these souvenirs,” shared Agni Dhakal, Proprietor at Shovabhagawati Handicrafts, Narsinghchowk, Thamel.
As bargaining has become a must these days tourists can’t remain aloof from this trend. At a shop Chinese customers were bargaining for some items. “Tourists these days are more conscious about price and products. A price is quoted and certain bargaining is obvious,” revealed Mahesh Karmacharya, the Sales Personnel at Everest Thanka Treasures, Thamel. Economy of a country plays a vital role in bargaining too.
“China’s economy is strong and people from China don’t bargain as such. But people from other countries bargain a lot,” reasoned Pandey.
Advice for tourists
There are innumerable footpath shops in the Valley. Some of the passersby give a glimpse to the items on the footpaths and some even are seen buying them. Tourists too can’t remain untouched by these footpath shops. “But we advise tourists not to buy any kind of item from these footpaths as there is no guarantee in quality and originality of such products. Therefore, they are always advised to buy souvenirs from a registered shop,” says Sudhan Subedi, Public Relations and Publicity Officer at Nepal Tourism Board, Bhrikutimandap.
A registered shop is the one that is registered with the government. All of these registered shops have a PAN number and these PAN numbers are kept in such places where it is visible to everyone.
“The tourists must look at these PAN numbers and be sure that this is the place where they can buy items. It will be easy for them to complain and file cases in case of cheating. We also advise them to ask for original bills so that they won’t be cheated. Tourists are advised not to buy any item from hawkers as well as there is no guarantee of the quality of those products,” Subedi further recommended .
Tourists can asap contact policetourist@nepalpolice. gov.np for further assistance.
Source: The Himalayan Times
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A massive fire broke out in tourist hub of Thamel in Kathmandu on Thursday night.
Latest television images show that the blaze which started at around 10 pm from a building near Kathmandu Guest House in Thamel and immediately spread to five houses has been fully brought under control only after 10 hours.
Shisha Terrace Café and Bar, the famous Pilgrims Book House including adjoining jewelry and curio shops have been fully destroyed in the fire. According to preliminary police estimates, the leaping blaze has fully or partially destroyed more than 20 houses, shops and restaurants as there are tight clusters of buildings in the narrow alleys of Thamel.
There has been no report of casualties, but police said that one person suffered minor injuries in the blaze.
Firefighters from Kathmandu Metropolitan City, police and the Army are still trying to put out the smoke while attempting to gauze the full extent of the damage caused by the fire.
Five fire engines had been sent to the spot to bring the fire under control late night. More than two hundred fire fighters, policemen and locals were involved in efforts to douse the fire and prevent it from spreading to adjoining houses.
The reason of the fire was yet to be confirmed, but it is learnt that the building from where the blaze started was made of wood and was thus prone to catching fire.
Although no casualties has taken place, but the loss in terms of property in the incident will run to millions of rupees, police said. Pilgrims Book House which has been in Thamel for many years was completely destroyed. Partially burnt books as well as various others artifacts from the book store were seen strewn across the narrow street.
Over the last few years, Kathmandu has seen few major fires breaking out at crowded places.
Kathmandu: A massive fire that broke out in Thamel on Thursday night has finally come under control after nine hours on Friday morning.
The fire is brought under control after using fire brigades form Lalitpur, Bhaktapur and Kathmndu districts and more than two dozens of private water tanks to douse the fire.
It has been estimated that the the fire has destroyed property worth millions. The fire has destroyed the Thamel-based Pilgrim Books House and the books stored at the shop along with the three houses of Sher Bahadur Shahi and Ajaya Shahi.
According to Hemanta Pal, spokesperson at Metropolitan Police Commissioner´s Office, the fire had started from Faces Club last night.
Police said that they are yet to know the exact reason behind the fire.
However, they suspected that the fire might have broke out due to explosion of cooking gas cylinder.
Archaeologists have discovered artifacts dating from the Buddha era from an excavation site at Bhawanipur in Devdaha, Rupandehi district.
A team of the Department of Archeology (DoA) started excavation at the Devdaha area, believed to be the maternal home of the Buddha, two years ago. The excavation at Bhawanipur began three weeks back.
Walls, bricks, silver and wooden bracelets, clay utensils, butter lamps and stones are among the things discovered.
Prakash Darnal, officer at the department, said that findings of relics such as a bust of the Buddha, a well and the ruins of the Siddhartha palace will help prove the area’s relation with the enlightened one.
“Additional study and excavation are necessary to find which part of the area is the maternal home of Gautam Buddha,” he said.
Out of the 14 Buddha-related areas, he said, some parts only of Kanyamai, Bhawanipur and Panditpur were unearthed so far. “We have found remains dating back to 10th, 11th and 12th centuries,” he said.
The discovered items are said to have been sent to the department for study. They will later be returned through the Lumbini Development Trust (LDT), an official said.
Himal Upreti, archeology officer at the LDT, said consultations on whether the discovered antiques will be displayed in the Lumbini International Museum or kept at Devdaha will be held with the local people.
Meanwhile, locals complained that the excavation site is being encroached upon and the discovered items are being stolen due to the failure of the LDT to protect the site. The LDT has only fenced the site with barbed wires.
Keshab Khawas, chairman of the Buddha Maternal Home Area Development Committee, stressed the need to conserve the Devdaha area.