Monthly Archives: September 2015

Tips for first time travellers to Nepal

Namaste!! 🙂

We are once again here, now to make you know about India and nepal…

~~~~Here we go~~~~

1. The power situation

Unless you visit during monsoon, which isn’t advisable, Kathmandu suffers from crippling power shortages of the sort that apparently used to be common throughout India, but are not any longer. The hydro dams that produce electricity are low outside of the monsoon months, meaning that scheduled power in the middle of winter can be as little as two hours per day. At other times of the year, this can rise to 8-12 hours per day.

If you’re staying in a hotel in Kathmandu or Pokhara, you’re likely to be supplied with sufficient power from a back-up generator. Be aware that most Nepalis do not have this luxury.

2. If you’re a woman, your experience will be much easier in Nepal

While I’m a staunch supporter of women’s travel in India, the truth is that travelling in Nepal is much more comfortable, most of the time.

In general, Nepalis are a very laid-back people who don’t invade one’s personal space, male or female. Nepali men are not prone to staring or making audible or muttered comments to foreign women. There is less likelihood that a casual chat with a man on a bus or elsewhere in public will be misinterpreted, thus making it easier for foreign women to have genuine, interesting and harmless conversations with Nepali men. It’s still a good idea to dress modestly, but Nepali women—especially the young, in Kathmandu—often show more skin and wear tighter jeans and t-shirts than is common in India. Although still a very patriarchal and male-dominated society, Nepal does not have the same unwritten prohibitions against women in certain parts of the public sphere that India does. If, as a woman, you stumble into a down-market restaurant that’s patronised by men, you shouldn’t feel intimidated.

At first, you may think that these more relaxed gender codes were a mountains-plains divide, as it is often said that travelling in India’s mountainous areas is ‘easier’ as a woman. However,  visiting Janakpur, a city on Nepal’s plains, very near the border with Bihar, and you may find the atmosphere there very comfortable.

A market in the ancient Newari city of Bhaktapu

A market in the ancient Newari city of Bhaktapu

3. Vegetarianism

Although the majority of Nepalis are Hindu, most are not vegetarian. You may love travelling in India as it’s one of the few places in the world where you are spoilt for choice when you pick up a menu. The same doesn’t always apply in Nepal, where chicken and buffalo are very popular. But it’s still easy to get by, as veg curries and momos are available almost everywhere, even deep in the mountains.

4. The infrastructure

In some respects, such as the network of trekkers’ lodges throughout the mountains, Nepal’s tourism infrastructure is good. In most others, it really is not. The quality of the roads in Kathmandu is extremely poor, as they are in much of the rest of the country. Local buses are old, over-crowded and slow, although very cheap. Faster tourist buses only run along a couple of routes, namely, between Kathmandu and Pokhara. There are practically no railways in Nepal apart from a short strip in the Terai that connects with India, and domestic flights, although frequent and cheap, are often cancelled due to bad weather in the mountains.

Nepal is a very poor, very mountainous country, so this poor infrastructure is entirely understandable. But it does mean that when visiting Nepal, it’s not a good idea to try to do too much, too quickly.

5. It’s not OK to lose your temper

Sometimes, in India, stomping your foot and raising your voice is the only way to get what you want, or be treated the way you should be. In Nepal, this doesn’t fly. In this respect, Nepalis are temperamentally more similar to their East Asian neighbors, where losing one’s temper in public is considered an embarrassment, and the quickest way to alienate people. (Of course, this doesn’t apply to politics, which is governed by its own set of rules and non-rules!)

At the Neydo Tibetan Monastery in Pharping

6. The permeation of Buddhism

Although more than 80% of Nepalis are Hindus, Buddhism is a very visible part of Nepal’s cultural landscape. Lumbini, on Nepal’s plains, is said to be the birthplace of Gautama Siddhartha Buddha, and the country has several ancient Buddhist pilgrimage sites. In Kathmandu, there are numerous Buddhist stupas, adorned with the elegant, languorous and ever-watchful eyes of Buddha. Fluttering, primary-coloured Tibetan prayer flags are a common sight. The native people of the Kathmandu Valley, the Newars, practice a form of Buddhism that has been strongly influenced by Hinduism. Tibetan Buddhism is visible throughout the high Himalaya, which is inhabited by ethnic groups related to Tibet, and also in Kathmandu, with its significant population of Tibetan refugees.

Don’t surprise by all these differences, but because Nepal rarely features in international news (before the earthquake this year), it’s too easy to assume that it is just a more mountainous version of India. Nepal is fascinating and unique, and has as many reasons to return again and again as its larger, harder-to-overlook southern neighbour.

Mountain views from the Langtang Valley

Mountain views from the Langtang Valley


Satellite phones in tourists trekking areas…!!

Hello everyone!!!

Monks n Monkeys travels with bombastic news,:-

“Soon, tourists trekking in areas where there is no connectivity may be allowed to use satellite phones for any emergency.

Indian government is going to allow the use of satellite phones for adventurers, which is most likely to boost tourism in destinations where there is no phone connectivity. Now tourists can contact their near & dear ones in case of emergency while trekking in the remote areas of Ladakh, hiking in Sikkim, exploring the wilderness of Himalayas or doing other such activities in any of the remote areas of India.

This decision is an outcome of the meeting held between home affairs and tourism ministries. Thuraya satellite phones were banned few years ago as it was becoming difficult for intelligence agencies to keep a track of these phones. But now, the home ministry has given its nod to remove the ban on the use of these phones.

Approximately, 200,000 foreign tourists come to India for indulging in adventure and the number of domestic tourists is even higher.

For some years, adventure tour operators were requesting the authorities to lift the ban after tourists witnessed many lethal accidents and life-threatening situations.  “8 out of 10 trips are in the no-connectivity areas like jungles and hills. And it becomes very difficult to contact the outside world for help when tourists suffer from bad health. In these situations, every second is crucial and sometimes we have to wait for 24 hours before someone could actually inform the Air Force about the requirement of a chopper.”

“It is a move that could finally put India on the map as a destination for adventure enthusiasts, the government is likely to lift the ban on use of satellite phones for tourism purposes. This means that tourists trekking in the wilderness in the north-east or skiing in the upper reaches of Himalayas where there is no connectivity can use satellite phones for any emergency.”  -says, Dr Sharad Kumar Jindal, MD, MNM Travels Pvt Ltd. 

~~~Stay tuned with our travel blogs- stay updated with Incredible India~~~

Thanking you all 🙂 🙂

Monks n Monkeys Travels Pvt Ltd

hAvE a NiCe DaY   *_*

MICE With Us..!!

Namaste people over there and people everywhere… 🙂 🙂

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Royal Wedding


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Thanking you all,

With love & respect

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