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  Tourism personalities honoured by His Majesty the King Nepal to Celebrate Cho Oyu Festival in October, 2004     Govt. allocate budget for Regional Tourism Promotion       Impact on tourism after accession to WTO discussed    Microlight flies over Mt. Everest     Pemba- fastest man to climb Everest    Medical clinic at Everest Basecamp     Nepal wins best service award in Germany     Annapurna Circuit-No.1 in iExplore's Hiking & Trekking Trips     Climbing Mount Everest among BBC's 50 things to do before you die     Everest Base Camp Selected in 20 Journeys of Lifetime 

Tourism personalities honoured by His Majesty the King

Famous Mountaineer Reinhold Messner and Nawang Sherpa have been conferred Prestigious Suprabal Gorakha Dakshin Bahu (Third) by His Majesty the King. Similarly, Board Member of Nepal Tourism Board and tourism entrepreneur Suman Pandey and Banquet Manager of Soaltee Crowne Plaza Deepak Damala have been conferred Prabal Gorakha Dakshin Bahu (Fourth) by His Majesty the King.

Nepal Tourism Board would like to extend heartiest congratulations to all of them.


Nepal to Celebrate Cho Oyu Festival in October, 2004

In the process of celebrating the Golden Jubilee Anniversary of Ascent on the Himalayan Peaks above 8000 meter, Nepal is celebrating Cho Oyu Golden Jubilee Anniversary on October 19, 2004. Nepal Mountaineering Association has prepared a series of events to celebrate it.

Cho Oyu sits astride the border of Nepal and Tibet, about 20 miles west of Mount Everest. It is the sixth highest mountain in the world (8201 meters or about 26,900 feet). Cho Oyu is translated in Tibetan as ''the goddess of the turquoise.'' A famous trade route crossed Nangpa La pass, just west of Cho Oyu, and very close to the Advanced Base Camp. From Tibet, salt was brought over this pass to Namche Bazaar (Khumbu's commerce center) in exchange for grain from the south.

For Detail Information, please contact:
Nepal Mountaineering Association (NMA)



Climbing Mount Everest among BBC's 50 things to do before you die

In early 2003 BBC asked its readers to vote on the top 50 things they think everyone should do in their life and Climbing Mount Everest has made its place in 26th position. After from Nepal, India's Seeing Tigers in wild is the only entry that made from South Asia which is in 45th place. BBC asked online readers to vote for 50 things to do before you die and Swimming with dolphins in Florida, USA has been voted first. BBC has quoted Dorian Hempleman who says, 'I think that for anyone who loves the outdoors and has a passion for culture the Himalayas has got to be the pinnacle of ambition. The raw energy and vastness of this region mixed with the Nepalese culture must combine to offer a truly unforgettable experience.'

Meanwhile BBC has also chosen Nepal among Holiday 10 best in the Wild and wonderful holidays for a trip of a lifetime theme. Nepal has been placed eighth in this theme. India's Ranthambhore National Park has been voted as first in this theme which is famous for tiger watching.


Everest Base Camp Selected in 20 Journeys of Lifetime

The UK's leading magazine The Observer, sister publication of UK's Guardian in its Sunday edition published on January 11, 2004 has selected Everest Base Camp of Nepal in 20 Journeys of a Lifetime. Selected by journalist Jill Hartley as great adventures that one never forgets, Everest Base Camp has been placed in the seventh position beating the destination like Galapagos Islands which was placed first by UK's internet based travel company in 2003. Galapagos Islands has been placed in sixteenth position in this list of The Observer. The famous traditional trade route known as Silk Route from Kashgar (China) then Tashkent - Samarkand - Khiva (Uzbekistan) is in eight position.

The Everest Base Camp is the only South Asian destination that has been included in the list. Most of the journeys included in the list are shared by two countries. The journey from Ruta Maya Antigua - Quetzaltenango (Guatemala) to Lake Atitlan - Antigua (Guatemala) via San Cristobal - Palenque - Merida (Mexico), Belize City - Caye Caulker (Belize), Tikal has been selected as number one among 20 journeys.

Describing the Everest Base Camp journey, Jill Hartley writes,'' To the rest of us, the crown jewel of the Himalayas invokes tales of unbelievable human courage and strength. Today a trek to Base Camp should be within range of any fit regular weekend walker. Those who've done it say nothing compares with that roof-of- the-world feeling as you stand there in awed silence surrounded by towering snow-capped peaks. That said, the Himalayas are as famed for their vibrant rhododendron forests as their snowy tops. You'll also need a camera for cliff-side monasteries with football playing monks in saffron robes, colourful yak trains accompanied by local black-eyed urchins and vertiginous swing bridges decorated with fluttering prayer flags. ''


Impact on tourism after accession to WTO discussed

Tourism Industry Division of Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation with support from Nepal Tourism Board organized a program on the effect in tourism sector after the accession of Nepal as 147th member of World Trade Organisation (WTO) on April 23, 2004.

The workshop was organized with an aim to inform and educate the tourism industry on what implications it will have on the tourism industry after the accession of Nepal to WTO .

With the accession to WTO now the foreigners and multinational investors could make investments in tourism areas like aircraft maintenance & repair and travel agency & tour operator with a maximum of 51 percent share for the initial years whereas in star rated hotel & lodging services and graded restaurant, the foreign investment can go upto 80 percent.

It was also discussed that the Indian and the dollar tariff will have to be reformulated so that tourists of various nationalities get equal treatment as per the agreement of WTO.

Resource persons speaking on the occassion were Mr. Prachanda Man Shrestha, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Industry, Commerce and Supplies and Mr. Ashok Pokharel, Director, Shangri-La Tours and member of the executive committee of Nepal Tourism Board.


Microlight flies over Mt. Everest

Richard Meredith-Hardy, a 46-year old Etonian Englishman, Richard Meredith-Hardy has become the first man to fly a microlight over the highest peak of the world Mt. Everest.

Hardy fulfilled his dream on May 24, 2004 around 8:15 AM Nepali time and waved to a "shed load of climbers" standing on top of the highest peak of the world and began circling to take photos to confirm his achievement of a ten year dream to be the first man to fly a microlight over Everest.

Richard had been towing an Italian hang glider pilot, Angelo also aiming to fly over Everest, but there had been a tow-line break at 27,000 feet after climbing in front of the Lhotse Face, and Richard lost sight of Angelo, who fell away, still attached to a piece of line, and was not seen by Richard again (it was later confirmed that Angelo landed safely next to the Italian Himalayan weather centre in Lobuche).

Richard climbed another 3,000 feet, crossing an area full of potentially deadly down drafts, some as fierce as 3,000 feet/min, before circling joyfully over the summit and taking numerous photos.

Richard flew back to his base at 12,500 feet, 15 miles from the summit, and landed safely. Richard and Angelo had been in Nepal a month, after a year of preparation, for the fourth attempt at Everest by microlight. Three previous attempts, had all failed the last by just 1,500 feet.

Angelo, an Italian hang glider expert who specializes in flying with eagles, tracing migration routes, had aimed to be the first man to fly a hang glider over the highest mountain in the world.

They had suitable equipment, including oxygen and cold weather gear, and Richard was able to power his heated suit from the Rotax 912 turbo engine which drove his English-built Pegasus XL-S.


Pemba- fastest man to climb Everest

Mr. Pemba Dorjee Sherpa (27 yrs) a High Altitude Sherpa of "Dream Everest Expedition 2004" from Gaurishankar -I, Dolakha, Nepal has been successful to summit Mt. Sagarmatha (Everest) the highest (8848 m.) peak of the World by setting a new world record of fastest climbing, according to a press release issued by Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation. He completed the distance from Sagarrnatha Base Camp to the summit in 8 hours and 10 minutes by starting at 6 P.M. on 20th May 2004 and reaching the summit at 02.10 A.M. on 21st May 2004.

The previous world record was 10 hours 56 minutes and 46 seconds set by Mr. Lhakpa Gelu Sherpa (36 yrs) Climbing Sirdar from Solukhumbu on 25th May 2003.

Mr. Pemba Dorjee Sherpa a High Altitude Sherpa of Ten members "Dream Everest Expedition 2004 " Team was permitted to climb 8848 meter high Mt. Everest from South East Ridge for the period of seventy- five days from 25th March 2004 under the leadership of Mr. Robert Huygh, Ternat, Belgium.


Medical clinic at Everest Basecamp

Himalayan Rescue Association(HRA) has set up medical clinics at Manang, Pheriche(Everest Region) and Everest Basecamp to assist trekkers and climbers. In Manang Goan and Pheriche, medical camps have already been in operation since March 01, 2004. But in the Everest Basecamp it starts from April 01, 2004. The camp in Manang and Pheriche (4600 metres/ 146000 feet) will be there till May 20, 2004. However, it will remain at the Everest Basecamp till the last week of May, 2004 as it indicates the closure of expeditions and trekking in the area.

Manang Clinic is being manned by Dr. Alexandra Halina Dunin Bell and Dr. Michael Kai Chin whereas Pheriche Clinic is managed by Dr. Suzanne Christinne Boyle. The Everest Base Camp Medical Clinic set up at the height 5,340 m/ 17,600 ft will be looked after by Dr. Lauanne Freer and Dr. Denise Meritt. They are being assisted by HRA staff.

This apart, HRA runs daily talk on altitude sickness at Manang, Pheriche, Dingboche and Kathmandu.

Dr. Merritt graduated from UConn medical school and has Wilderness EMT training, is a member of The Appalachian Trail Club, Wilderness Medical Society, Travel Medical Society, and a veteran of the HRA.

Dr. Luanne Freer, board certified emergency physician, wilderness medicine expert, and veteran volunteer for the HRA, heads the altitude-experienced medical staff, which treats all climbers/support staff at Everest Base Camp, as well as trekkers visiting Base Camp. Luanne makes daily live updates to her website from BC.

The first-ever Everest Base Camp Medical Clinic was a pilot project of the Himalayan Rescue Association last spring, and the brain-child of Dr. Luanne Freer.

The Himalayan Rescue Association (HRA) is a voluntary non-profit organization formed in 1973 with an objective to reduce casualties in the Nepal Himalayas, especially keeping in view the increasing number of Nepalese and foreigners who trek up into the remote wilderness. ( Check HRA website: www.himalayanrescue.comor for more detail)


Nepal wins best service award in Germany

In 2003, Tourism Network, a German tourism PR Company initiated Go Asia Campaign aiming at promoting Asia as Holiday destination. Together with REISE & PREISE, one of the most popular consumer travellers magazines it conducted a poll same year for their readers to choose the Best Tourism Board of Asia, Best Asian Destination, Best Asian Airlines, Best Asian Service & Hospitality, Best Asian Beach, Best Asian Cultural Destination. In this poll, Nepal has won the first prize in the Best Service & Hospitality Category. Readers have given top marks to Nepal for its friendliness and best hospitality. In this category, Nepal has been followed by Japan and Taiwan in the second and third position respectively. Thailand is in forefront in receiving first prize in many categories ranging from Best Beach to Best Shopping whereas Singapore Tourism Board has been voted as Best Tourism Board. Thai Airways has been voted Best Asian Airlines. The Prize for winners will be distributed at ITB Berlin on March 12, 2004 amidst the function. Nepal Tourism Board will represent Nepal in this function to receive award.


Annapurna Circuit-No.1 in iExplore's Hiking & Trekking Trips

iExplore, the world's leading resource for off-the-beaten-path travel has recently published its top 10 routes for exploring a piť run the gamut from day-tripper walks and hikes to multiweek treks into high-altitude mountains in its website: In its admittedly audacious picks for the world's top adventures on foot, Nepal's Hiking Annapurna Circuit has been given number one ranking. It describes this trekking area as follows: "This classic Himalayan trek is a classic for good reason: It encapsulates the best of Nepal, wrapping around the stunning Annapurna range to put you in the shadow of peaks that pierce 26,000 feet. Yak herds, eagle-like Himalayan griffons, blue sheep (so called because of the blue-gray hue their coat turns in winter), fluttering Buddhist prayer flags, and hot springs dot this central Nepal route, which starts in lush green foothills and climbs into high-altitude desert typical of the Tibetan plateau. Bonus: The lakeside town of Pokhara offers plentiful opportunities for shorter treks in the region for those who don't have three weeks to spare." This classification is based on the write up by Lynn Schnaiberg, a Chicago-based writer in iExplore.


'On Arrival Visa' for Chinese Tourists

His Majesty's Government has implemented a new policy of issuing ''On Arrival Visa'' for the Chinese tourists visiting Nepal both by air and land. The new policy which came into effect from 02 September, 2003 aims at facilitating the Chinese tourists who wish to visit Nepal.

The decision to this effect was made at the meeting of the high level offices of the ministries of Home and Foreign Affairs held on 26 August, 2003, according to the information received recently from the Department of Immigration.

Earlier, it was mandatory for the Chinese tourists to get visa from the concerned authorities prior to their departure from China. The new policy allows the Chinese tourists to enter Nepal from all entry points designated by His Majesty's Government of Nepal. The new arrangement is expected to help revive the ailing tourism industry.


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