TOURRISM YEAR Prospects & Challanges

<br>CSILLA VARADI

Aug. 23, 2011, 5:45 p.m. Published in Magazine Issue: Vol. : 05 No.-05 Aug. 19-2011 (Bhadra 02,2068)<br>

The year 2011 is being celebrated in Nepal as the Year of Tourism. Why, you wonder, is it this year? What makes this year so special? Tourists have come to the country since the 1950’s. Of course, their number is increasing each year, except for the decline in tourist arrivals during the the civil war.


The goal for 2011 is to bring a million tourists and promote the tourism sector which can mean the beginning of a bright future of Nepal. The rich natural resources in the country hold out the promise that tourism can be the solution for reducing poverty and increasing employment.


As a tourist myself, I cannot consider myself anything near an insider. I have quite a different point of view when it comes to seeing Nepal and examining tourism, which is one of the key motors of the nation.


I notice people, demeanors, architecture, culture and relationships that are unseen for the Nepalese because they live in them and we tend to get narrow-minded when it comes to things that we see each and every day. So this is where my job begins, of describing what a foreigner may receive as an impression of Nepal.


My first glimpse consisted of an extremely hectic, dusty Kathmandu that seems to live by no rules. Chaos is reverberated on the narrow streets; people’s rapid walking, honks of the cars, the micro-buses that have a never ending capacity of absorbing people and tremendous amount of motor bikes mixed with a frequently taken big gulp of smog, pollution and the reeking of the trash. But people are used to it, we get used to it and start to live by the apparent no rules, which will become our actual rules.


Despite all these, the Nepalese people live by a much stricter system that we, Western people, should admire and take as an example on how to change for the better. The fact that they know how to preserve and store essential things such as water and food is something we should learn from them. They are hard-working and religious people with huge hearts. They aren’t helping in the hope of some money, although some money would come in quite handy, but out of mere generosity which makes them extraordinary. This is the biggest charm of Nepal. This is why tourists are visiting over and over again. Not to talk about the incredible beauty the Nepalese land has to offer for the curious eyes. It’s got everything that one could ask for. If one is into visiting the lavish Hindu temples, or one that would like to see a breath-taking view, I guarantee, they will not be disappointed.


According to Nepal Tourism Board, over 550,000 tourists visited Nepal last year. The recently released data of NTB for the first eight months of this year show there is an increase in the number of visiting tourists. Average Hungarian people do not know where Nepal is but they know where the Mount Everest is. Mountains of Nepal may lure a large numbers of tourists.


Nepal provides a wide range of activities for the visitors. Trekking is unquestionably the most popular; the Everest expedition route, the Annapurna trek and the trek to the Kingdom of Mustang.


There are many attractions, a must see during your visit in Nepal. Within the program for the Year of Tourism, more places and new trekking routes have been introduced so the visitors who have been in the country before can come back and see all the new spots.


Authorities have plans, that are engaging, but the questions remain: will they manage to get them work? The signs are promiscuous; more and more tourists come to Nepal and the fact that the government is building another international airport, along with several local airports shows that finishing the plans with success by the end of the year is getting more reachable. It will not only mean a triumph for the people who organized the year but for the whole nation-- this can be the beginning of a new era.
(Varadi is an intern from Hungary)

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