Is Nepal Safe to Travel?
Post the 25 April Earthquake and the resulting aftershocks, “Is it safe to travel to Nepal?” is the common question among tourists worldwide. The devastating 7.8 magnitude earthquake prompted almost every country has recommended its citizens to exercise caution while travelling to Nepal. While the safety directives issued have their own good reasons, they fail to cast light on many positives for tourists that remain.
The general understanding is that due to the earthquakes, the monsoon season will be vulnerable against floods and landslides. It is true, with the kind of terrain Nepal has, it has always endured landslides and floods during monsoon. The recent earthquakes increase the risk. It is important to note that the risks were always there and are not the byproducts of earthquakes. While the risk factors are always there, after the recent earthquakes they have been exaggerated in many ways.
Let us talk about the positives. The pictures shown by the world media told the story of post earthquake in Nepal. The devastation caused was tragic and the grief was felt worldwide. However, the message it delivered, knowingly or unknowingly, has been that Nepal is totally destroyed. Hidden in the disaster reporting is the fact that the earthquakes affected only eight of the 75 districts in Nepal.
What does it mean for travelers wishing to visit Nepal?
- Only one of the 10 National Parks is affected.
- More than 90% of the hotels in Kathmandu are open for service. Other popular cities like Pokhara, Chitwan, and Lumbini and Bardia are not affected at all.
- Annapurna Region is fully unaffected and Everest Region is open after bearing initial damages.
- The Durbar Squares and temples in Kathmandu are open for visitors.
- Only two trekking routes are affected.
- The International and National airports have no significant damages and are fully functional.
- There have been no epidemics as a result of earthquakes.
To top it all, most of the hotels and trekking agencies in Nepal are offering incredible deals even for tourist seasons. You will be saving a lot while enjoying the Himalayas.
What can I do to stay safe?
The best way to ensure your safety is to make sure that you talk properly with your travel agents. The local agents based in Nepal are regularly updated about the trekking regions. They also have the first hand information when it comes to the condition of trekking trails post earthquakes. A few trekkers have already travelled to Nepal after the earthquake. Referring to their experiences will not only help you be sure about your decision to travel to Nepal but also learn from what they have seen. We also recommend avoiding the earthquake hit regions like Gorkha and Langtang for the time being.
Finally the Answer to “Is Nepal safe to travel?”
Trekking and climbing in Nepal belongs to some of the most loved vacation activities among tourists worldwide. The tourism infrastructure of Nepal is not much worse than it was prior to the earthquakes. Good news for many is that the hotels and trekking operators are offering some of the best prices ever offered. Many of them are also working together for a social cause to help those affected by earthquakes. So you are not only travelling, but travelling to make a difference. Thus, yes, Nepal is safe to travel. Come and enjoy the pristine beauty of the Himalayas that remain unshaken by the recent earthquakes in Nepal.