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Nepal hopes to salvage autumn trekking season

Nepal's autumn trekking seasons starts in September (photo courtesy Shutterstock).

Nepal is looking to reopen to international tourists from August 17, according to the Nepalese Ministry of Culture Tourism.

The country ended 120 days of lockdown last week as Nepal’s information minister Yuba Raj Khatiwada announced that the number of coronavirus cases was declining in Nepal. The country has recorded more than 18,500 cases and 45 deaths.

Government and private offices were fully functional again from July 22 and all private and public vehicles were permitted back on the streets. Markets, malls and shops were also allowed to reopen. Schools, however, remain closed.

Airports and commercial flights are set to resume on August 17 to support the opening up of the country to international tourists, although restrictions may remain for travellers from countries such as the US and India where there are high levels of coronavirus infections and deaths.

On August 17 all other tourism activities can resume in Nepal, including trekking and climbing. Nepalese tourism has lost a massive US$80million per month during lockdown and the country’s spring trekking season was shut down when the pandemic hit in March.

The monsoon season runs from May to mid-September when climbing and trekking is not advised, but the season restarts in the autumn with some of Nepal’s best walking weather from September through to November. The autumn trekking season normally attracts around a third of Nepal’s annual 1.2 million tourists.

But if you're hopeful of catching the best of Nepal this year, be warned that travellers must hold a negative Covid-19 health certificate and a 14-day quarantine period is likely to be enforced.


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