01 - Nepal / Le Népal

What is the political situation of Nepal?

Nepal is a parliamentary democracy since 2006. The political background is stable since then, although government often peacefully changes.

Is it safe to come to Nepal ?

There is no major safety issue in Nepal. It is moreover important to respect some elementary precautions to avoid any problem. For instance be careful not to show of value things to prevent any temptation, watch your belongings, don’t walk alone at night in some areas… but the country remains safe, even for a woman alone.

What is the currency ? Do we have to bring much money ?

Nepali rupee is the country currency. 100 rupee is about 1 euro. It is possible to withdraw in all big Nepali cities. You can also change money very easily. If you are going trekking, you have to take money for the entire trip and a small safety margin also.

What is the weather in Nepal ? How to get dressed ?

Average temperatures in Nepal (C°)
Altitude and area Teraï 180m Pokhara 800m Katmandu 1300m Namche Bazar 3440m
Month Mini Maxi Mini Maxi Mini Maxi Mini Maxi
January 8 23 6 19 2 17 -8 6
February 11 28 8 22 3 21 -4 6
March 17 33 14 27 9 25 -2 8
April 19 37 17 31 11 27 1 11
May 22 37 19 31 16 28 3 14
June 23 34 21 31 19 28 7 15
July 25 33 21 30 20 28 8 16
August 24 32 21 29 20 27 8 16
September 24 32 20 28 19 26 7 15
October 19 31 15 27 12 25 1 11
November 14 27 11 24 8 21 -3 8
December 8 24 8 20 3 19 -4 7
Precipitations and sunshine in the Katmandou valley
Month J F M A M J J A S O N D
Precipitations days/month 1 5 3 4 12 18 24 23 15 4 1 1
Sunshine hours/day 6 6 8 10 6 5 3 2 3 5 5 5
Origine: Météo France Website In Katmandhu Valley temperature is usually comfortable. In summer temperature is more humid and in winter, because of the wind, it seems colder. During monsoon (from June to September) bring a light rain coat or a small umbrella with you every time. Even if there are intermittent and short, rains can be violent and you can get caught in the rain at every moment. Spring and autumn are the most pleasant seasons in Nepal. The weather’s mild, not too hot and it is sunny almost every day. There is no need taking hot clothes if you only travel in Kathmandu Valley. A thin sweater is enough for the early morning or the evening. It is important to notice that winter is a really pleasant season in Nepal. The weather is a little bit cold but it’s always sunny. With regards to shoes small trainers and slippers are enough. Except during winter when you need bigger shoes.

Is it possible to come during winter ?

Winter is a very beautiful season in Nepal. It is almost always sunny. The sky is totally clear and you can see the mountains from Katmandu. If you go trekking you have to take bigger and hotter equipment.

What time is it in Nepal?

Nepal is GMT+5:45

Check out what time it is in Kathmandu right now by clicking here: http://www.timeanddate.com/worldclock/city.html?n=117

What are the biggest festivals in Nepal ?

Magh Festival, Devghat (Teraï) (January)
This festival symbolizes the end of winter in Nepal Southern regions. There are lots of ceremonies, baths in Naravanj River and other celebrations.

Losar, Tibetan regions (February)
Tibetan New Year begins with February full moon. It is celebrated in Northern Tibetan regions but also in Katmandu, in Boddhanath, Pashupatinath and Swayambunath.

Maha Shivaratri, Pashupatinath (February - March)
It is Shiva’s birthday. Hundreds of sadhus join during full moon in Pashupatinath for a bath in Bagmati River.

Balkumari Jatra, Thimi (mid-April)

Bisket Jatra, Float Festival, Bhaktapur (mid-April)
Mid-April Bisket Jatra marks the beginning of the Nepali year. It is celebrated in an impressive way in Bhaktapur.

Rato Machhendranath, Patan (April- Mai)

Janai Purnima, all the country (August)
During August full moon men from highest casts (Brahman, chetri) have to change their holly string (janaï) which they wear all year long. This festival gives rise to huge gatherings of shamans.

Indra Jatra, Float festival, Katmandu (August – September)
This festival symbolizes the end of the monsoon. But we also celebrate the conquest of Katmandu Valley by Prithvi Narayan. He is the one who unified Nepal.

Dashain, all the country (September – October)
It is the most expected festival in Nepal. It lasts 15 days during which celebrations, sacrifices, dances and prays occur everywhere in Nepal. Durga Goddess’ victory on the forces of evil, represented by a cruel devil, is celebrated.

Tihar – Deepawali, all the country (October – November)
Second most popular festival in Nepal, Tihar is dedicated to animals worship.

Mani Rimbu, Tengboche (November)

Which books to read before going to Nepal?

  • Annapurna by Maurice Herzog
  • Conquistadors of the Useless by Lionel Terray
  • The Snow Leopard by Peter Matthiessen
  • A Barbarian in Asia by Henri Michaud

02 - Health / La Santé

What about malaria?

There is no malaria risk in Katmandu Valley. Nevertheless malaria is widespread in Southern Nepal like in Teraï. Consequently if you are planning to visit this area it is highly recommended to take antimalaria drugs.

Which vaccines have to be made before leaving?

None of vaccines are compulsory, nevertheless some are highly recommended. Vaccines required are really depending on the trip you are planning to do. As a consequence we advise to consult specialized sites like, in France, Pasteur Institute’s one.

Which first-aid kit?

Here is an example of a first-aid kit. It is not exhaustive but you can draw your inspiration from it.
  • Usual personal medicines
  • Aspirin
  • Adhesive and non adhesive tapes
  • Disinfectant
  • Sterile compress and plasters
  • Small scissors
  • Anti diarrhea
  • Stomach-coating medication
  • Broad-spectrum antibiotic
  • Intestinal anti infectious
  • Anti-inflammatory cream
  • Eyedrops or eyewash
  • Medicine for cough and for throat infection
  • Antihistaminic
  • Insect repellent
  • Skin and lips solar screen
  • Anti malaria for Southern regions

03 - Procedures / Les Procédures

How to get the Nepal ?

It costs between €600 and €800 for a round trip, sometimes more. It's depends of course of the date of booking and the flight. To go to Nepal, there are no direct flights. Depending on the company you choose, you will at least stop:
  •  In Delhi with Indian Airlines and Air India (the flight can be operated by Air France)
  •  In Doha with Qatar Airways
  •  A Bahrain with Gulf Air
  •  In Bangkok with Thai Airways
  •  In Abu Dhabi with Etihad
Gulf companies generally offer excellent flight for a good price.

How to get a visa?

You can contact the Nepal Embassy of your country directly. Otherwise, you can get your visa when arriving at Katmandu airport. It is quick and easy. You only need two ID photos. The cost of Touristic Visas depends on the length of your stay in Nepal.
  • 1 to 15 days : €25
  • 16 to 30 days : €40
  • 31 to 90 days : €100
You also have to request a visa for children under 10, but the visa is free. Touristic visa can be renewed in Nepal, at the Immigration departement (Bhrikuti Mandap Street) up to a maximum of 5 months per civi year. The extension is of 15 days minimum and costs $2 per day. If you're planning to stay for more than 5 months, your return flights will be required for the last renewal.  

What kind of assurance is required?

It's is strongly advised that you contact your current insurance agent to tell them you are going to Nepal and see what they can offer you. If you are planning a trek, let them know.

04 - Our Tours / Nos Voyages

How to contact us in France?

You can call Corinne Massardier who worked with Mandap Travels in Katmandu for a long time. Tel +33 6 40 35 60 70 - E mail corinne.massardier@gmail.com.

What do you mean by « home stay »?

This Home Stay project comes from two wishes. First one is to make people discover our country in a real genuine way. Second one is to make isolated villages benefit from financial and cultural impacts of tourism. So in partnership with some villages we are setting up equipment to accommodate foreign guests. For instance we equipped some houses with beds, showers, toilets… those equipments remain basic in order to fit with village way of living. There are though comfortable and clean. You will have the opportunity to share one or two days of village life. The villagers will be glad to guest you, to share dal bhat, to discuss or even sing or play music… Moreover you will enjoy pleasant walks between the villages in the green hills of Katmandu Valley.

Are they really made-on-measure?

We propose typical circuits on our website but we are used to adapting them for each one of our customers. We can make them shorter, add steps, adapt hostels and means of transport to each one’s budget… You can also submit tour proposals to us. We then advise you so that your tour will be the best one and offer you different packages at different budgets.

05 - Equipements

Which equipment for a trek (depending the season)?

If you come during winter, we will discuss more carefully about your equipment and clothing. Internal flight allows 15 kg plus 5 kg carry on. So you can carry around 40 kilos of luggage. But a porter is supposed to carry 20kg and he carries the luggage of two people. So you are requested to limit your luggage on 10 kilos per person. If more we need to engage another porter. During the day, you will carry your camera, water bottle, extra clothing and a small first-aid kit in a day-pack. A 35L to 45L day-pack with foam waistband shoulders straps is most versatile and can double as an overnight backpack. Waterproof nylon or plastic bags inside your bag will protect your belongings from the rain, as will a waterproof backpack cover. For the rest of your luggage: lockable duffle bag. Clothing
  • Trekking boots and spare laces
  • Hat (warm), scarf and gloves
  • Gore-tex waterproof jacket, poncho or umbrella (in case of raining, a poncho is maybe the better protection since waterproof jacket retains condensation inside and can you wetter more than the rain itself! You can easily find this in Katmandu)
  • Running shoes, sandals or thongs (for the evening)
  • Shorts and trousers (any long, comfortable, quick-drying trousers will do; trekkers feel very comfortable with pants with zip-off legs than become shorts)
  • Wool-blend socks, liner socks and underwear (three pairs, not cotton)
  • Thermal underwear
  • Sunhat (with a wide brim that covers your ears)
  • Fleece jacket
  • T-shirts (two or three) and long-sleeved shirt with collar (avoid cotton t-shirt because they retain moisture and get cold. Polypropylene or other synthetic-fiber shirt dries much more quickly)
Equipment For each people in the trek
  • 2 trekking sticks for each
  • 35L or 45L back-pack that you will carry
  • A lockable duffel bag
  • A sleeping bag and a silk bag
  • 1L plastic water bottle which doesn’t leak
  • Pills to purify water
  • Good pair of polarized sunglasses in a metal or hard plastic case
  • Sunscreen and total sunscreen for your lips, lip balm
  • Torch
  • Trekking poles are helpful for stability and if you have bad knees. A small roll of gaffer/ duct tape is useful for fixing rips, tears and breakages of any kind
To be divided up between you
  • Laundry soap in bar
  • Antibacterial gel or pre moistened towels (or baby wipes)
  • A pocket knife with a pair of scissors
  • Everything to deal with blisters on hand at all times
  • Packet of tissues or a supply of toilet paper with you at all time

06 - First lexique / Premier lexique

Basic Lexicon

Hello, Bye                     Namaste Thank you                    Dhanyabad How are you?                    San tché tcha ? I’m fine                    San tché What’s your name?                Tapaiko naam ke ho ? My name is XX                Mero naam XX ho. How old are you?                Kati barsa ko vhaiyo ? Where are you from?                Kaha bata ? I come from X.                X bata. Where?                    Kaha ? When?                        Kahilé ? Now                        Ahilé. Why?                        Kina ? One                        Ek Two                         Dui Three                        Tin Four                         Char Five                        Panch Ten                        Das One hundred                    Ek say It’s good                    Mitho tcha How much?                    Kati paisa?