Tourism industry delights during festive season

Photo Courtesy: Nepal Tourism Board

Kathmandu: Tourism is the most affected by COVID-19 pandemic. Even before the lockdown, five-star hotels in Nepal had shut down their services. After the lockdown started, this sector, like other areas, came to a standstill.
Tourism industry that has been focusing only on foreign tourists have started learning new lessons after Covid. Recognizing the fact that if domestic tourism had been promoted, the current situation would not have been as critical as it is now, tourism entrepreneurs have started doing promotional activities for domestic tourists.
Due to the same effort, even in the midst of the Covid-19 epidemic, major tourist destinations have started filling up with domestic tourism.
From the time of Dashain till now, the nearest destinations from Kathmandu Valley like Nagarkot, Dhulikhel, Chitlang, Pokhara, Sauraha, Bandipur, Hile, Ilam and other medium distance destinations are full of domestic tourists. Similarly, Pathibhara, Sankhuwasabha’s Tumlingtar, Mustang, Tilicho to Rara are also crowded with tourists.
According to the Nepal Tourism Board about 1.2 million Nepalese used to travel abroad in previous years. Of them, about 400,000 were government employees and the remaining 800,000 were tourists from the private sector. This year, not only tourists from abroad could not come to Nepal but also could not go out of Nepal, this is the situation when they go to their own country’s destination.
From hotels, travel to airlines, the presence of enthusiastic tourists has increased and so has the activity in all tourism sector. According to the Hotel Association of Nepal (HAN), popular hotels in major destinations have up to 70 percent occupancy during the decade.
However, the occupancy rate of airlines reached 95 percent during this period. Airlines have said that there is a significant demand for air services from regular destinations to Himalayan tourist destinations at this time.
Before the beginning of the festive season, the airlines had brought tour packages saying that the attraction in the Himalayan tour package would revive the weakened area.
In particular, two large private sector airlines, Yeti Airlines and Buddha Air, had announced such packages. Buddha Air had brought tour packages for Pokhara and Sauraha while Yeti Airlines had brought 16 packages for Pokhara, Sauraha, Bharatpur, Biratnagar, Janakpur, Bhairahawa, Nepalgunj, Rara, Ghandruk, Mustang, Everest Trail and Tumlingtar.
The number of people enjoying adventure tourism including paragliding, zipline and bungee jump has increased this time. It has been found that those who do not like to travel long or in groups and do not even have time for it are attracted to the field of adventure tourism.
Currently, there are zipline facilities in Sauraha, Dhulikhel, Bhimfedi, Nuwakot and other places. There are paragliding facilities in Pokhara, Dhulikhel and other areas.