About This Course

Nepal

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Nepal Tourism Board is a national tourism organization of Nepal established in 1998 by an Act of Parliament in the form of partnership between the Government of Nepal and private sector tourism industry to develop and market Nepal as an attractive tourist destination. The Board provides platform for vision-drawn leadership for Nepal’s tourism sector by integrating Government commitment with the dynamism of private sector. NTB is promoting Nepal in the domestic and international market and is working toward positioning the image of the country. It also aims to regulate product development activities. Fund for NTB is collected in the form of Tourist Service Fee from departing foreign passengers at the Tribhuvan International Airport, Kathmandu, thus keeping it financially independent. The Board chaired by the Secretary at the Ministry of Tourism and Civil Aviation consists of 11 Board Members with five Government representatives, five private sector representatives and the Chief Executive Officer.

Additional Information
Capital Kathmandu
Currency
Timezone Asia/Kathmandu
Total States 7 Province
Airport City Lukla Airport, Tribhuvan International Airport, Pokhara Airport, Simara Airport, Bharatpur Airport
Ruling Type Government
Offical Languages Nepali, Maithili , Bhojpuri, Tharu, Tamang
National Animal COW
Food Daal Bhat Tarkari, Momo, Chatamari
Seasons Autumn  : Sep - Nov
Summer : Jun - Aug
Winter     : Dec - Feb
Sprint      : Mar - May


Destination



1 ) Kathmandu
Popular - Temple / Church / Mosque     Location - Kathmandu, -Province No.3, -Nepal

Kathmandu, Nepal's capital, is set in a valley surrounded by the Himalayan mountains. At the heart of the old city’s mazelike alleys is Durbar Square, which becomes frenetic during Indra Jatra, a religious festival featuring masked dances. Many of the city's historic sites were damaged or destroyed by a 2015 earthquake. Durbar Square's palace, Hanuman Dhoka, and Kasthamandap, a wooden Hindu temple, are being rebuilt.


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2 ) Pokhara
Popular - Temple / Church / Mosque     Location - Pokhara, -Gandaki, -Nepal

Pokhara is a city on Phewa Lake, in central Nepal. It’s known as a gateway to the Annapurna Circuit, a popular trail in the Himalayas. Tal Barahi Temple, a 2-story pagoda, sits on an island in the lake. On the eastern shore, the Lakeside district has yoga centers and restaurants. In the city’s south, the International Mountain Museum has exhibits on the history of mountaineering and the people of the Himalayas.


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3 ) Janakpur
Popular - Arts and Cultural     Location - Janakpur, -Province No.2, -Nepal

Janakpur is a city in Nepal which is believed to be the birthplace of Goddess Sita and the place of her marriage with Lord Ram. Also known as the City of Ponds, Janakpur boasts of more than seventy ponds that dot its verdant landscape. Here you can learn more about the ancient and revered Hindu epic, the Ramayana and its significance today. Visit the actual sites mentioned in the great epic and listen to local lore as well - the entire experience is sure to be culturally fascinating and spiritually invigorating!

 

The city is located in the Terai region of Nepal and is the administrative headquarters of Dhanusa district. Every year, Janakpur sees thousands of tourists throng its borders, as pilgrims from all over the world visit this holy city. The pleasant weather, the grand and colourful festivities through the year, the stunning architecture of the temples and the friendly locals make Janakpur a favourite spot for tourists and pilgrims alike.


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4 ) Chitwan
Popular - National Park     Location - Chitwan, -Province No.3, -Nepal

Chitwan District is one of 77 districts of Nepal, and is located in the southwestern part of Province No. 3 with Bharatpur, the fourth largest city of Nepal, as its district headquarters. It covers an area of 2,238.39 km2 (864.25 sq mi), and in 2011 had a population of 579,984 (279,087 male and 300,897 female) people. Bharatpur is a commercial and service centre of central south Nepal and major destination for higher education, health care and transportation in the region.


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5 ) Lumbini
Popular - Temple / Church / Mosque     Location - Lumbini, -Province No.5, -Nepal

Nestled in the Himalayas near the Indian border, the beautiful town of Lumbini is the birthplace of Lord Buddha. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Lumbini has a plethora of ancient stupas dating back to 2000 years and monasteries that were built by the past dynasties. People come here from all over the world to this abode of Buddhism to study scriptures, meditate, practise yoga, trek, learn more about Buddhism and find inner peace. 'Lumbini' literally means 'The Lovely' in Sanskrit, and true to its name it stands!

 

The entire site is decked up with prayer flags that have blessings and incantations upon them, which have been put up by thousands of tourists. Each of the monasteries here is architecturally distinctive, with beautiful façades and paintings. 

The Mayadevi Temple is the most important and sacred site in the area - it houses the actual spot where the Buddha was born, to Queen Mayadevi, the wife of King Suddhodana of Kapilavastu. A stone marker can identify the birth spot. Nearby is the Bodhi Tree in Lumbini Garden, where the Holy Mother is said to have rested a while before giving birth to the Buddha. The tree radiates peace and spiritual serenity and is decked in prayer flags. Significant archaeological remains are placed inside the temple as well. The Lumbini Garden also houses the Pushkarini - Sacred Pond. Little Siddhartha is also said to have swum in this holy pond. Another important archaeological marvel is the Ashoka Stupa (Pillar), which was built in 249 B.C. 

Avid trekkers can do the Lumbini Circuit Trek and witness 64 historical and archaeological sites around the area, including visits to villages where one can get an authentic experience of the local culture and hospitality.


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6 ) Jomsom
Popular - Hills     Location - Jomsom, -Gandaki, -Nepal

Jomsom, also known as Dzong-Sampa or New Fort, is the centre of Gharpajhong Gaunpalika and former independent village development committee at an altitude of about 2,700 m in Mustang District, Nepal. It extends over both the banks of the Kali Gandaki River.


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7 ) Bharatpur
Popular - National Park     Location - Bharatpur, -Province No.3, -Nepal

A lot of people visit Nepal for the attraction of the wilderness, namely Chitwan National Park. Bharatpur is the city that falls right in the gateway of the forested area. Located in central-south of Nepal, Bharatpur is the headquarters of the Chitwan district as well as a separate metropolitan administration - one of the four metro cities of Nepal. In essence, the main Bharatpur is mostly about urbanisation. All the government offices, colleges, hospitals are here, while most of the shopping and dining places are in its neighbouring town Narayangarh.

Although there are not many places of interest or attraction sites in or around Bharatpur, the proximity of the town to Chitwan forest on the one hand and the important transportation artery of Mahendra Highway on the other side. Moreover, it also has its own airport, which runs regular flights to Kathmandu and Pokhara.


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8 ) Patan
Popular - Historical     Location - Patan, -Central Region, -Nepal

Patan is the third-largest city in Nepal right after Kathmandu and Pokhara. It is now known as Lalitpur. Both names are derived from the Sanskrit word ‘Lalitapattan’. The city is located just across the river Bagmati from Kathmandu. Patan has a Durbar Square that is full of statues, temples, and palaces. In addition, Durbar Square also has the ‘Patan museum’ which is a must-see attraction. It is a traditional centre for handicrafts and is also a place to purchase traditional jewellery, Buddha statues and masks.

Patan was once an independent and a mighty kingdom of the Kathmandu Valley. It has now become a melting pot of two famous religions, Hinduism and Buddhism. A temple of the Hindu Lord Krishna rests right in the middle of the same town whose architecture has been dedicated to the Buddhist Dharma-Chakra (Wheel of Righteousness) philosophy. Its ancestral uniqueness is still moulded into Patan and this distinguishes Patan as a different atmosphere altogether in a short travel.


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9 ) Bhaktapur
Popular - Temple / Church / Mosque     Location - Bhaktapur, -Province No.3, -Nepal

Bhaktapur is one of three medieval cities in the Kathmandu Valley, the other two being Kathmandu and Patan. It is often referred to as Bhadgaon and Khwopa and has a mix of Hindu and Buddhist population. This city is located around 12 kilometres from the capital city of Kathmandu and is divided into three squares, each of them filled with temples and other religious structures. Entry to this town, however, is not free and visitors need to pay a town entry fee of NPR 1500. This goes into the maintenance of the temples in Bhaktapur.

A place for devotees, this city is located in the Eastern part of Kathmandu valley. Bhaktapur, “the city of culture” was unfortunately destroyed during the 7.9 magnitude earthquake in April 2015, causing loss of life and terrible devastation of some of the historically important temples. Nevertheless, the city has been getting back on its feet steadily over the past 4 years and as a result, is one of the most valuable historical cities in Nepal. 

This city is placed on the trade route between India and Tibet and gives a clear view of the Himalayas. Being the third-largest city in Nepal suggests that Bhaktapur is one of the popular tourist destinations with Bhaktapur Durbar Square being the most common attraction.


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10 ) Itaharin.P.
Popular - Culture     Location - Itaharin.P., -Province No.1, -Nepal

A sub-metropolitan city with seven municipalities in the Sunsari district, Itahari has recently evolved into a bustling transportation junction in the eastern side of Nepal. The two main branches of the Nepal highway circulation - Mahendra Highway running from east to west and Koshi Highway running from north to south cross with each other at Itahari. And, thus, it has become a traffic nerve centre of Nepalese transportation. If you really delve deep into Itahari, you will find it is more than just a city to pass-by and enjoy from the windows of your vehicle, or to stop merely to have meals. The small metro city has some things to offer as well.

In terms of years, the city of Itahari is not very old. It was established only in 1997 and was declared a metro city in 2014 along with some other adjoining cities. So, it neither has the vast historical appeal of antiquity, nor the charm of distinctive culture like many other cities of Nepal do, especially the capital.


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11 ) Narayangad
Popular - Culture     Location - Narayangad, -Western Region, -Nepal

Narayangarh is a major transportation and commercial hub in Nepal. This moderately crowded city falls under the bigger umbrella of Bharatpur City and under the administrative jurisdiction of Chitwan district in southern Nepal. Narayangarh, also referred to as Narayanghat, sits with all its buzzing noises and busy crowds and ferrying traffic, right at the bank of Narayani River. The reason why Narayangarh is such a popular part of Bharatpur is its strategic position in term of cross-country traffic. The Narayangarh-Mugling Highway, which is the main driving route via the hills up to Pokhara and the capital Kathmandu, meets the east to west road called Mahendra Highway.

The confluence of these two main arteries is one of the busiest places in Nepal, both for local traffic as well as tourism. The fact that India lies on this side of the country, and any car driving from the Indian border will have to cross the Narayangarh-Bharatpur area to reach the capital is also a driving factor behind its rising popularity. If small riverside towns appeal to you, an overnight stay at Narayangarh will not go in vain at all.


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12 ) Lalitpur
Popular - Culture     Location - Lalitpur, -Province No.3, -Nepal

Also known by the name Manigal, Lalitpur is famously known for its rich cultural heritage, especially its tradition of arts and crafts. Today, with a population of nearly 2,25,000 people, Lalitpur is well known as a very picturesque city. King Varadeva is believed to have founded this city of feasts and festivities in 299 CE.


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Activity



1 ) Bhaktapur
Activity Category - Historical Place

Bhaktapur is an ancient city about 12km outside of Kathmandu city within the Kathmandu valley.Once one of the capitals of Nepal in the 15th century, today it's Nepal's third largest city and renown as being a city of culture, temples and craft work. It's common that most tours or travel agents only focus on "Bhaktapur Durbar Square" however the city is much larger than it's most famous attraction.





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2 ) Boudhanath (Boudha Stupa)
Activity Category - Culture

The first stupa at Boudhanath was built sometime after AD 600, when the Tibetan king, Songtsen Gampo, converted to Buddhism. In terms of grace and purity of line, no other stupa in Nepal comes close to Boudhanath. From its whitewashed dome to its gilded tower painted with the all-seeing eyes of the Buddha, the monument is perfectly proportioned.

The highly symbolic construction serves in essence as a three-dimensional reminder of the Buddha’s path towards enlightenment. The plinth represents earth, the kumbha (dome) is water, the harmika (square tower) is fire, the spire is air and the umbrella at the top is the void or ether beyond space. The 13 levels of the spire represent the stages that a human being must pass through to achieve nirvana.

Stupas were originally built to house holy relics and some claim that Boudhanath contains the relics of the past Buddha, Kashyapa, while others say it contains a piece of bone from the skeleton of Siddhartha Gautama, the historical Buddha. Around the base of the stupa are 108 small images of the Dhyani Buddha Amitabha (108 is an auspicious number in Tibetan culture) and a ring of prayer wheels, set in groups of four or five into 147 niches.


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3 ) Swayambhunath (Monkey Temple)
Activity Category - Temple / Mosque / Church

Swayambhu is an ancient religious architecture atop a hill in the Kathmandu Valley, west of Kathmandu city. The Tibetan name for the site means 'Sublime Trees' (Wylie: Phags.pa Shing.kun), for the many varieties of trees found on the hill. However, Shing.kun may be a corruption of the local Nepal Bhasa name for the complex, Swayambhu, meaning 'self-sprung'. For the Buddhist Newars, in whose mythological history and origin myth as well as day-to-day religious practice Swayambhunath occupies a central position, it is probably the most sacred among Buddhist pilgrimage sites. For Tibetans and followers of Tibetan Buddhism, it is second only to Boudha.

The complex consists of a stupa, a variety of shrines and temples, some dating back to the Licchavi period. A Tibetan monastery, museum and library are more recent additions. The stupa has Buddha's eyes and eyebrows painted on. Between them, the number one (in Devanagari script) is painted in the fashion of a nose. There are also shops, restaurants and hostels. The site has two access points: a long staircase leading directly to the main platform of the temple, which is from the top of the hill to the east; and a car road around the hill from the south leading to the south-west entrance. The first sight on reaching the top of the stairway is the Vajra. Tsultrim Allione describes the experience


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4 ) Kathmandu Durbar Square (Basantapur)
Activity Duration - 7:00 AM - 7:00 PM     Activity Category - Palace

Kathmandu Durbar Square (Basantapur Darbar Kshetra) in front of the old royal palace of the former Kathmandu Kingdom is one of three Durbar (royal palace) Squares in the Kathmandu Valley in Nepal, all of which are UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

Several buildings in the Square collapsed due to a major earthquake on 25 April 2015. Durbar Square was surrounded with spectacular architecture and vividly showcases the skills of the Newar artists and craftsmen over several centuries. The Royal Palace was originally at Dattaraya square and was later moved to the Durbar square.

The Kathmandu Durbar Square held the palaces of the Malla and Shah kings who ruled over the city. Along with these palaces, the square surrounds quadrangles, revealing courtyards and temples. It is known as Hanuman Dhoka Durbar Square, a name derived from a statue of Hanuman, the monkey devotee of Lord Ram, at the entrance of the palace.


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5 ) Hanuman Dhoka
Activity Duration - 9am – 5pm     Activity Category - Palace

Hanuman Dhoka is a complex of structures with the Royal Palace of the Malla kings and also of the Shah dynasty in the Durbar Square of central Kathmandu, Nepal. It is spread over five acres. The Hanuman Dhoka Palace gets its name from the stone image of Hanuman, the Hindu deity, that sits near the main entryway.

Kathmandu's royal palace, known as the Hanuman Dhoka, was originally founded during the Licchavi period (4th to 8th centuries AD), but the compound was expanded considerably by King Pratap Malla in the 17th century. Sadly, the sprawling palace was hit hard by the 2015 earthquake and damage was extensive. At the time of research, the main Nasal Chowk courtyard was open and the Tribhuvan Museum was close to reopening, with other buildings closed for reconstruction.


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6 ) Pashupatinath
Activity Duration - 4am – 12pm & 5pm – 9pm     Activity Category - Temple / Mosque / Church

Dedicated to Lord Shiva, Pashupatinath is one of the four most important religious sites in Asia for devotees of Shiva. Built in the 5th century and  later renovated by Malla kings, the site itself is said to have existed from the beginning of the millennium when a Shiva lingam was discovered here.

The largest temple complex in Nepal, it stretches on both sides of the Bagmati River which is considered holy by Hindus.  The main pagoda style temple has a gilded roof, four sides covered in silver, and exquisite wood carvings. Temples dedicated to several other Hindu and Buddhist deities surround the the temple of Pashupatinath.

Cremation of Hindus take place on raised platforms along the river. Only Hindus are allowed through the gates of the main temple. The inner sanctum has a Shiva lingam and facing the temple sits the largest statue of Nandi the bull, the vehicle of Shiva. There are hundreds of Shiva lingamswithin the compound. The big Maha Shivaratri festival in spring attracts hundreds of thousands of devotees from within Nepal and from India. Further east before the Bagmati reaches Pashupati is the temple of Guheshwori dedicated to Shiva's consort Sati Devi.


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7 ) Nagarkot
Activity Duration - 09:00 AM - 05:00 PM     Activity Category - Attraction

The tiny village of Nagarkot burrowed in the lap of towering peaks is a part of Nepal's Bhaktapur district. Perched at the edge of Kathmandu Valley, Nagarkot gives you one of the widest panoramas of the Himalayan ranges - you can spot 8 out of the 13 Himalayan ranges from the comfort of your hotel. The mighty Annapurna, Manaslu, Langtang, Jugal, Everest, Numbur, Ganesh Himal and the Rolwaling ranges can be seen from Nagarkot on a clear day!

Located at a mere 28-kilometre drive away from Kathmandu, Nagarkot offers one of the best views of the Himalayas in the entire region as it has an altitude of 7000 feet (2000 metres)! An erstwhile summer retreat of Nepali, Indian and British royalty, this village rose to fame after tourists thronged the area in recent years. The idyllic village sits serenely in the midst of nature - the only sounds you can hear are the birds chirping and the breeze whistling through the pines.


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8 ) Chitwan National Park
Activity Category - National Park

Chitwan National Park is a preserved area in the Terai Lowlands of south-central Nepal, known for its biodiversity. Its dense forests and grassy plains are home to rare mammals like one-horned rhinos and Bengal tigers. The park shelters numerous bird species, including the giant hornbill. Dugout canoes traverse the northern Rapti River, home to crocodiles. Inside the park is Balmiki Ashram, a Hindu pilgrimage site.


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Festival

1 ) Mahashivaratri

Festival Month - February

Mahashivaratri fully make big festival in Nepal. Pashupatinath in Kathmandu is main temple where millions of devotees from Nepal and out of countries visit during this occasion. Other thousands of devotees also attend Mahashivaratri at other famous Shiva temples (Peetham) of Nepal. There are hundreds of peetham in Nepal which are important Shiva parvati places. Devotees take holy bath at holy water source and wear clean clothes to worship. Women and men both offer prayers to the Sun, Vishnu and Shiva. The temple reverberates with the sound of bells and shouts of "Shankerji ki Jai" meaning 'Hail Shiva'. Devotees circulate the lingam three or seven times, and then pour water over it. Some also pour milk over it.


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2 ) Fagun Purnima or Holi

Festival Month - March

Phalguna Purnima is the full moon day in the month of Phalguna. On this day, Holi and Lakshmi Jayanti are celebrated. Krishna Rasleela begins on the Phalguna Purnima day and continues till Rang Panchami. The ritual of Holika Dahan is observed on this day. Hindus observe a day-long fast during the Phalguna Purnima. In South Indian States of Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Andra Pradesh, and Telangana, Phalguna Purnima is observed as Kama Dahanam. In states such as West Bengal and Orissa, Dol Purnima (dedicated to Lord Krishna) is observed during Phalguna Purnima. The birth anniversary of Chaitanya Mahaprabhu is also celebrated on Phalguna Purnima.


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3 ) Bisket Jatra

Festival Month - April

Bisket Jatra, Bhaktapur's weeklong festival marks the ancient solar Nava Barsha (New Year) and is the only festival that does not follow the lunar-based Nepali calendar. The jatra commences after a special Tantric ritual in th Bhairab temple in Taumadhi Tole in Bhaktapur. Bhairav and Bhadrakali are then placed in large chariots (locally known as Rathas) and pulled through crowds of cheering onlookers. During the festival people replay a drama passed on over the centuries.


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