With the spring trekking season in Nepal underway, it’s hoped that Prince Harry’s official visit and the captivating images on his Instagram account, #HarryinNepal, will urge other travellers to return and provide a much-needed boost to the country’s economy.
April 25, 2016 marks the one-year anniversary of the Nepal earthquake which killed more than eight thousand people, left two million homeless and destroyed around 6000 schools.
The earthquake has had a major impact on tourism, the country’s single largest industry, with a 50% drop in visitors in the past 12 months.
World Expeditions, which has been operating treks in Nepal for more than 40 years, is urging travellers to take a page from Prince Harry’s book and explore this amazing country.
The adventure travel company’s CEO, Sue Badyari, says now more than ever, people need to return to Nepal.
“Nepal is home to the world’s highest peak, clusters of Himalayan ranges and hardworking people who live amongst them,” she said.
“Collectively, they have inspired, challenged and brought positive change for travellers from around the globe who seek to experience its majesty and the warmth of the mountain villagers.
“Tourism is a major contributor to the country’s economy so the downturn in tourists has had a huge impact. Trekking is down and of course that has a flow on effect throughout the country – from porters in small villages to taxi drivers in Kathmandu and restaurants that are seeing less business.
“Now, more than ever, the people of Nepal need something back from us and we encourage travellers to consider visiting this amazing country.”
World Expeditions Quick Facts:
- World Expeditions had 17 groups (200 travellers and staff) in Nepal and the surrounding regions when the quake struck; all returned home safely.
- The World Expeditions Nepal Earthquake Appeal (utilising the World Expeditions Foundation) has raised more than $250,000 for relief efforts and rebuilding schools.
- Since the quake, World Expeditions has operated seven “Nepal Rebuild” trips, which combine volunteering on the rebuilding effort with treks to various regions. Two new community trips, rebuilding The Shree Setibhume School in Northern Nepal have been announced for October and November, 2016.
- World Expeditions has operated two successful trekking seasons with 500-plus travellers in Nepal since September 2015.
- World Expeditions’ senior guides completed thorough safety and operational assessments in the Annapurna and Everest regions in the months after the earthquake and recommenced operating in these areas shortly after. In late 2015, they completed similar assessments in Langtang and Manaslu. Spring trekking resumed there earlier this year.
- World Expeditions has launched its 2016-17 Himalaya brochure, offering one of the most extensive Nepal programmes in the market. It includes trekking itineraries for all levels, ranging from introductory to challenging, mountaineering and of course the 1700 km Great Himalaya Trail.
- A network of permanent campsites and eco-lodges in the Everest and Annapurna regions, exclusive to World Expeditions, enable trekkers to enjoy the most comfortable yet sustainable accommodation option in these areas.