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Weekly Official e-Newsletter of Nepal Tourism Board

In this Issue :

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Lalitpur Festival concludes
Govt to shift focus at China for tourism
Floriculture Exhibition concludes
Biggest Passover Festival in the world held in Kathmandu
China - the new number one tourism source market in the world


Nepal commemorated the 80th anniversary of the first flight over Mount Everest on 3 April 1933 – 9 years after Mallory and Irvine had disappeared trying to climb the mountain. The flight aimed to map Everest to allow a successful ascent, and twenty years later Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay used their photographs on their historic climb. The mountain flight that took in the morning of April 3, 2013 was operated by Yeti Airlines to celebrate it.

The 1933 expedition was commanded by Air Commodore Peregrine Fellowes, the great-uncle of Julian Fellowes, writer of TV’sDownton Abbey. The flight was carried out by two intrepid Scottish volunteers from the Royal (Auxiliary) Air Force – David Fowler McIntyre and Lord Clydesdale, future Duke of Hamilton.

Two years after their Everest flight the two pilots founded an airport in Prestwick, Scotland, and a aircraft factory, Scottish Aviation Ltd.( which  later  became BAE Systems), which built the Pioneer, the Twin Pioneer – and the Jetstream-41.

On April 3, 2013 Lord Clydesdale’s grandson, Charles Douglas Hamilton, accompanied by a team from Prestwick World Festival of Flight and the national/international media corps, took Yeti Airlines’ flight over Everest in a Jetstream-41 aircraft built by Scottish Aviation Ltd. at Prestwick. The flightwas hosted by Yeti Airlines and the participation of Charles Douglas-Hamilton and the Festival team was facilitated by BAE Systems Regional Aircraft Prestwick, successor to Scottish Aviation Ltd.

‘It was astounding to see the mountain and appreciate the sort of risks taken by the expedition pilots in the pursuit of advancing science and aviation. I will be back to trek with some friends and explore the mountains,’ said Charles Douglas-Hamilton.

‘This was one of the most wonderful experiences of my life,’ said George Kerevan, ex-Chairman of the Edinburgh Tourist Board. ‘Everyone should take the flight over Everest before they die.’

‘Yeti Airlines made us so welcome, and their Jetstream's-41 give a perfect view of the Himalayas,’ said Angela Wrapson, Festival Producer. We felt so safe and comfortable that it was difficult to imagine what the first pilots had to endure, with their heated suits and open-cockpit planes, which were at the mercy of the winds off the mountains.’

‘We had an amazing view of Everest. I was honoured to be a part of this special event,’ said Umesh Chandra Rai, Group General Manager. ‘On behalf of the company, I would like to congratulate Captain Bodh Raj Niroula, Flight Officer Kiran Man Pradhan, and Air Hostess Haseena Shrestha for a perfect flight.’

Nepal Tourism Board and Yeti Airlines jointly organised a press conference after the flight to share the experience and to commemorate it.

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Lalitpur Festival concludes

The Lalitpur Festival organised with an aim of promoting the arts and culture in order to boost tourism for the social and economic development of the district concluded successfully in Lalitpur district Wednesday.

During the week-long event jointly organised by Lalitpur Chamber of Commerce & Industry (LCCI), Lalitpur Sub Metropolitan City & Jyapu Samaj-Yala featured domestic products reflecting local culture and traditions along with handicrafts, art works, dresses and food.

Similarly, the festival also featured musical events almost every day in some parts of the district focusing cultural and traditional instruments.

The event saw huge number of visitors including foreigners over the festival.

The event was inaugurated by culture expert Satya Mohan Joshi amidst a special ceremony in the district on Thursday. The organisers have also aimed to transform the district into culturally and industrially vibrant place through the event.

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Govt to shift focus at China for tourism

With the Chinese tourist arrivals constantly on the rise, the authorities and tourism entrepreneurs intend to lay emphasis on China, seeking boost in the tourism industry.

"Since China is our second largest market for tourism industry, we believe the time has come to shift our focus towards the northern neighbor henceforth," Sushil Ghimire, secretary of Ministry of Tourism and Civil Aviation (MoTCA) told Xinhua on Tuesday.

The figures released by Immigration Office, Tribhuvan International Airport (TIA) reveal that arrivals from China has registered a significant growth of 35.7 percent in March this year despite the decline of overall tourist arrivals by 2.1 percent compared to the same month of 2012. Some 5,782 visitors from China made their trip to Nepal in March this year.

As Chinese tourist arrivals via air reached 17,341 in the first three months of 2013, China has consequently managed to secure second position in the top lists of countries.

Ghimire urged the tourism entrepreneurs to develop new packages in competitive rates to attract more tourists from China.

Meanwhile, the promotional activities from Nepalis private sector and their participation in different trade fairs in China have resulted in the growth in tourist arrivals, said Bikram Pandey, vice president of Nepal Association of Tour Operators (NATO).

He added that the tourism entrepreneurs are providing Chinese language training for the tourist guides associated with them to facilitate the Chinese tourists in Nepal.

Pandey, who have developed a tour package of visiting four steps of Buddha's life, shared his further plan to develop a new tourism product connecting circuits of Buddhist sites both in Nepal and China. "Buddhist tourism and adventure tourism can attract more tourists from China," said Pandey. "Realising this we have been organising marathon at the highest altitude on May 29 every year to mark the day of first summit at Mt. Everest and this year there will be more than 10 participants from China in the upcoming marathon to mark diamond jubilee celebration of first summit."

Furthermore, tourism entrepreneurs have asked the government to set one door system of issuing permission for the matters related with a trekking purpose to increase visitors' arrival.

Trekking agencies are compelled to contact door to door of the related ministries for varieties of approvals before taking tourists to their desired destinations, informed Mahendra Singh Thapa, president of Trekking Agents Association of Nepal (TAAN). “If a tourist desires to film the moments of trekking, they must have to get prior approval from the Ministry of Information and Communication (MoIC) and by the same way prior permission from Ministry of Forests and Soil Conservation (MoFSC) is mandatory to visit biodiversity protected areas." said Thapa.

He urged the government to set up one door mechanism to issue all of these permissions that could enhance overall tourist arrivals including those from China. (courtesy: Xinhua)

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Floriculture Exhibition concludes

The 16th Floriculture Exhibition 2013 concluded successfully registering the transaction of over Rs. 6.8 million at Bhrikutimandap in capital on Sunday.

The four-day event saw the footfalls of over 58,000, said the main organiser Floriculture Association of Nepal (FAN).
FAN also felicitated various outstanding nursery entrepreneurs on the occasion of exhibition.

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Biggest Passover Festival in the world held in Kathmandu

The Jewish festival “Passover” was celebrated in Kathmandu with hundreds of Israelis and Jews traveling to Nepal from around the world.

A special function was held by the Embassy of Israel in Kathmandu for all the Jews living in and traveling to Nepal on 25 March 2013 in Naya Bazar Multi Venue, Naya Bazaar, Kathmandu.

Over a thousand Israelis and Jews observed this festival only in Nepal making it the biggest Passover celebration in the world. Not only the Jews living in Nepal, but many Jews from other nations also visited Nepal for the festival, the Embassy said.

Pesach or Passover is the biggest and the most popular Jewish festival celebrated in and beyond Israel. Pesach begins on the 15th day of the Jewish month Nissan and is celebrated for 7 days. This year it will be celebrated from 26 March to 2 April 2013. The name Pesach is derived from the Hebrew word Pasach, which means “passed over”. The festival marks the beginning of spring and commemorates the Exodus from Egypt over 3000 years ago.

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China - the new number one tourism source market in the world

China’s expenditure on travel abroad reached US$ 102 billion in 2012, making it the first tourism source market in the world in terms of spending. Other emerging markets as well as most traditional tourism source markets also showed positive results in 2012.

Over the past decade China has been, and still is, by far the fastest-growing tourism source market in the world. Thanks to rapid urbanization, rising disposable incomes and relaxation of restrictions on foreign travel, the volume of international trips by Chinese travellers has grown from 10 million in 2000 to 83 million in 2012. Expenditure by Chinese tourists abroad has also increased almost eightfold since 2000. Boosted by an appreciating Chinese currency, Chinese travellers spent a record US$ 102 billion in international tourism in 2012, a 40% jump from 2011 when it amounted to US$ 73 billion.

With this sustained growth, China has become the largest spender in international tourism globally in 2012. In 2005 China ranked seventh in international tourism expenditure, and has since successively overtaken Italy, Japan, France and the United Kingdom. With the 2012 surge, China leaped to first place, surpassing both top spender Germany and second largest spender United States (both close to US$ 84 billion in 2012).

Some of the other emerging markets have also increased their share of world tourism spending over the past decade. Among the world’s top ten source markets by expenditure, the Russian Federation saw an increase of 32% in 2012, to US$ 43 billion, bringing it from the 7th to 5th place in the ranking of international tourism spending. Worth mentioning beyond the top ten is Brazil, with an expenditure of US$ 22 billion in 2012, moving to 12th place up from 29th place in 2005.

“Emerging economies continue to lead growth in tourism demand” said UNWTO Secretary-General, Taleb Rifai. “The impressive growth of tourism expenditure from China and Russia reflects the entry into the tourism market of a growing middle class from these countries, which will surely continue to change the map of world tourism,” he added.

Although the highest growth rates in expenditure abroad came from emerging economies, key traditional source markets, usually growing at a slower pace, also posted positive results. Spending on travel abroad from Germany and the USA grew by 6% each. Spending from the UK (US$ 52 billion) grew by 4% and the country retained its 4thplace in the list of major source markets. Expenditure by Canada grew by 7%, while both Australia and Japan grew by 3%. On the other hand, France (-6%) and Italy (-1%) were the only markets in the top ten to record a decline in international tourism spending.

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Photo of the week
A perfect souvenir to take home with you.

Upcoming Events

Second Eastern Region Tourism Fair

Date: May 3-5, 2013
Venue: Sabhagriha, Dharan
Organized By: Nepal Tourism Board

Fifth National Tourism Fair

Date: May 10-12, 2013
Venue: Bhrikutimandap, Kathmandu
Organized By: Nepal Tourism Board



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Editor: Sarad Pradhan
Asst. Editor: Sudhan Subedi
Media Center | Nepal Tourism Board
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Nepal Tourism Board (NTB) has sought to ensure that the contents of this newsletter are accurate at the time of transmission. NTB does not accept responsibility for any damage, loss, injury or inconvenience arising in connection with the contents of this newsletter. Nepal Tourism Board wishes to thank all stakeholders for their wonderful support and assistance for promoting Nepal as a happening destination. We request all tourism industry stakeholders to send us news and articles at mediacenter@ntb.org.np , ssubedi@ntb.org.np or ntbmediacenter@gmail.com to include them in the weekly E-newsletters.