How to get to Nepal
- Entering Nepal
Being a land locked country, there are only two way to get to Nepal. The most comfortable and popular way of travel is by air, but tourists do like to come to Nepal by land, nonetheless. Nepal has a single airport that receives international flight, and that being located at Kathmandu, it poses the flier compulsion to stay at Kathmandu for at least a night. However, there are limited points of entry to Nepal, from India and they too receive huge amount of tourists from neighboring as well as distant countries. Preference of travel through land, despite lengthiness of travel and lack of comfort is attributed to the fact that tourists can focus more on the Terai belt, rather than areas inside and around Kathmandu. Besides, it is equally easy to get to Pokhara and other parts of the nation from the reason as it is from the city of Kathmandu.
Terai belt is known as the granary of Nepal but it holds its own identity in terms of tourism. It's naturally unique and culturally diverse and moreover, people from India flock every year to this place because of its religious significance. Janakpur Dham located in eastern Terai which receives Hindu devotees throughout the year. Another significant religious spot is Lumbini which is renowned in the world as birthplace of Lord Buddha. In addition to that, Chitwan National Park, Bardiya National Park, and Koshi Tappu Wild Life reserve are popular destinations of nature-enthusiasts. It is habitat to Bengal Tiger, and One horned Rhinoceros that are popular because of their rareness. Apart from that, spectacular sunrises, rivers, evergreen forests, birds, etc. are abundant in Terai, and tourists can experience all that without even getting to the capital. This is a good way to visit Nepal if you have already been to Kathmandu and have seen everything that the city has to offer. However, if you have not, we suggest that you fly because Kathmandu is not a place you want to miss.
Nepal also has points of entry from China, but because borders are seasonally open and the northern region of Nepal is thin in infrastructure, they are not attractive to the tourists.
- Visa Issuance Information
Three types of commonly issued visas are:
- Transit Visa
- Tourist Visa
- Tourist Gratis Visa
As per the immigration rules effective 16th July of 2008 onwards, Transit visa is valid for an entire day, and the visa charge is 5 US$.
Tourist visas are issued with their validity ranging up to 15, 30 and 90 days and the respective charges are 25, 45 and 100 US$.
Tourist Gratis Visas are issued to the members of SAARC countries for 30 days, once a year without any charge.
Following points should be noted regarding visa issuance for Nepal:
- Both kinds of tourist visas allow multiple entries.
- Multiple entry tourist visas can be issued at border points by paying aforementioned amount.
- It is suggested that tourist bring two passport sized photos along with them to airport to fill up simple visa forms.
- Since visa issuance in the borders require US$, tourists arriving by border must be careful while changing the money in the border because they are prone to getting tricked by cheats.
- You can extend your visa up to minimum of 15 days and to maximum of 5 months. However the extension will cost you 2 US$ per day.
- Nepal Entry Points
By Air : Tribhuvan International Airport, Kathmandu, Nepal
Tribhuwan International Airport, Kathmandu, Nepal
By Land :
Mahendranagar - Far Western Region
Nepalgunj - Mid Western Region
Sunauli - Western Region
Raxaul - Central Region
Kakarvitta - Eastern Region
As it is already mentioned above, there is a single airport handling the international flights to Nepal. Although actions are being taken to upgrade Bhairahawa Airport to handle international flights, currently, Tribhuvan International Airport (TIA) is the only one that hosts foreigners to Nepal.
The airport's service and situation is frequently criticized and once, it was even graded third worst international airport in the world. However, there are far worse international airports but since TIA is the one that receives very large number of tourists, its demerits are more highlighted.
TIA consists of foreign exchange booths, tourist information counter, immigration counters, cafes and instant photo booths to cater to the needs of tourists.
TIA, like everywhere else, has a provision for x-raying your luggage after one enters a terminal. Do not forget to receive stamps on your luggage labels from custom officials.