Overview

Mount Everest
Mount Everest © shrimpo1967

Nepal's acronym of 'Never Ending Peace And Love' does well to characterise this nation of good-natured and accommodating people; the uppermost place on earth, a land of majestic Himalayan scenery including eight of the world's ten highest mountains, Mt Everest being one of them.

Situated between India and Tibet, the Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal is filled with many different ethnic groups, customs and traditions reflected in a wonderfully diverse geography. From the hot Indian plains and steamy southern Tarai lowlands, the terrain crosses the Kathmandu Valley and rises to the frozen heights of the Himalayan peaks towards the Tibetan plateau known as the 'roof of the world'.

Spread across these varied altitudes are communities of colourful cultures and people (many untouched by modern development), animated cities and towns, and far-flung mountain villages. Life here revolves around an intricate intermingling of ancient Hindu and Buddhist religious rituals. Numerous festivals are celebrated throughout the year, coloured by a diversity of religious and tribal traditions. The capital of Kathmandu brings an assortment of these different societies together into a vibrant collection of brilliant sights and exotic smells, with modern shops co-existing with street sellers, while pyramidal Buddhist temples, holy Sadhus of the Hindu faith and medieval palace squares fill the urban landscape.

Nepal boasts many attractions, but the essence of the country is its smiling, friendly people with their heartfelt palm-pressed greetings, and with its inspiring scenery, this beguiling kingdom is a place where one visit is usually not enough to satisfy the captivated traveller.


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