Wednesday Aug 10, 2022
Wednesday Aug 10, 2022

Nepalese Tourism seeks major revival post COVID

Nepal received more than 42,600 foreign tourists in the month of March after falling downhill last two years

2022 Apr 22, 16:17, Kathmandu
Photo: Binaya Rajopadhyay

The famous tourist hub, Thamel is coming back to life after two years of quietness. The number of tourists arriving fell drastically in the year 2021, reaching the lowest level since 1977, all in the wake of the terrible shadow the pandemic cast over business, especially in the tourism industry.

According to the Nepal Tourism Board in the years 2020 and 2021, the number of tourists visiting Nepal was 20% and 15% respectively, compared to the year 2019.

As spring takes full flight, the tourism season is upon us. Trekking, mountaineering and other tourists who’ve come to spend their vacation in the country can be seen swarming over hotels, cafes, shops in different areas of the country.

Photo: Binaya Rajopadhyay
Photo: Binaya Rajopadhyay
Photo: Binaya Rajopadhyay
Photo: Binaya Rajopadhyay

“We are getting positive signals after the post lockdown and in the month of March alone we have welcomed 45% more tourists when compared to the year 2019”, says Maniraj Lamichanne, the Director of the Nepal Tourism Board(NTB).

In March 2022, Nepal received more than 42,600 foreign tourists and as the statistics from the Ministry of Cultural, Tourism and Civil Aviation show, Nepal has welcomed 150,962 tourists in the year 2021.

According to the NTB, Nepal had 22,853 tourists arrive from the United States, 8,680 from the United Kingdom, and 6,196 from China.

When asked about the economic side of things, Lamichanne replied, “Tourism is slowly reviving in Nepal and all the tourism businesses are yielding positive numbers. We got to know that many travel and tour agencies, hotels, trekking agencies had received plenty of bookings and are still receiving them.”

He also shares that domestic tourists are eager to travel after the lockdown season and it has fully revived, “ Compared to the year 2019, we learned that more than 10% of domestic tourists are traveling this year”.

Photo: Sushil Shrestha
Photo: Sushil Shrestha
Photo: Sushil Shrestha
Photo: Sushil Shrestha

To uplift tourism, the National Tourism Board held different national and international fairs in three different parts of the country and one in Europe. They invited a number of Trekking agencies, Travel and tours agencies, and reporters in the country. For the International fair, they took 18 different trek and travel and tours agencies.

According to the Tourism Board, more than 300 travel and tours agencies from India are invited to Nepal to increase and promote tourism in Nepal.

“We are also actively involved in different social media platforms to increase tourism in Nepal”, he adds.

The hospitality industry, which were hit the hardest after the travel restrictions came in the starting year of 2020 are getting plenty of bookings. The travelers are also fulfilling all safety protocols before leaving their country.

 When asked about the abrupt end of Visit Nepal 2020 and if they have any similar plans to increase the number of tourists in Nepal, he says, “If the number of tourists increases in same number in future as it is doing now and all the other plans workout, then we will surely hold similar ventures come 2024 or maybe even in the year 2025”.


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