Contributed by: KEEP
NTB Eco-tourism Guidelines:
- Foreigners can visit most temples, stupas and shrines, except the inner sanctum. There will generally be signboards if entry is restricted
- Please remove your shoes before entering
- Items made of leather are prohibited in most religious places
- Move in a clockwise direction
- Photography: please ask first! Remember that flash photography may disturb people who are performing sacred rites
- Do not step on/ over anything that has red powder or flower/rice offerings on it
- Do not sit or climb on the statues
- Eating or smoking is not acceptable at religious sites
- Please do not touch offerings, or touch or disturb people carrying offerings or performing rituals
- Remember that these places are active places of worship
- Be quiet and respectful in your behaviour
Contributed by: KEEP
Contributed by: NRCT
When you visit the religious places please note the following, to avoid offence:
The above guidelines can be useful in ANY public place in Nepal.
- Let Nepal remain pristine for all times to come.
- Do not take anything away, only memories.
- Come, see and conserve.
- What's made out of murder, do not buy. Ivory looks better on the elephant, and the shell on the tortoise.
- Let's not make a nuisance of ourselves.
- Let the plants and animals are. Taking away seeds and roots is illegal in many parts of the Himalaya.
- Nothing beats while walking.
- Get into a deal with only those tour operators/hotels who are sincere about energy conservation.
- Trees are meant to grow - don't make an open fire. Firewood is scarce, avoid misuse.
- Littering is careless manners, burn or bury paper, and carry away all non- degradable garbage. Resist the graffiti itch.
- Keep the water source you are using clean, don't try detergents on streams and springs. Bury your waste, attend the call well away from the water source.
- Your guides and potters may know more about local conservation methods, learn from them. Or else, help them learn.
- Religious objects are better left untouched. Footwear is not allowed inside temples.
- Visitors who value local traditions encourage local cultures. Help local people gain a realistic vies of life in Western countries.
- Some temples have a standard entry fee. If you are making a donation, you might note that odd numbers are considered auspicious - e.g. 101 rupees rather than 100.
Code of Conduct for Rafting in Nepal's Rivers
Nepal River Conservation Trust has developed the following Code of Conducts for rafting in Nepal's rivers which has been endorsed by the government and adopted by many rafting companies. By following these essential but simple tips the visitor can not only be a guest but also an ambassador of sound environment practices.
- Leave your camping site cleaner than when you arrived. Litter is not only an eyesore but also a hazardous pollutant. All trash should be separated each day and treated properly. Burnable items ( paper cardboard etc.) should be burned on site, biodegradables such as food wastes should be buried and non disposable items (plastics aluminum foil, batteries , glass, cans) should be packed out and carried to a suitable waste treatment site. Villagers often collect empty containers for reuse in their homes. You may give bottles or jars to adults but do not leave them behind at campsities nor count on children to put them to good use. Raft guides should organize a sweep of the beach before departure each day.
- Make sure that our trip leader provides a toilet tent with a toilet pit for campsite use. Toilet pits should be dug well away from camp and below the monsoon high water level. Toilets should be located at least 50 meters (150 feet ) from any water source. Holes for pits should be dug at least 18 inches deep. Sprinkle dirt in the hole after each use to keep the flies away and recover that pit with dirt before the group leaves camp. A bag should be provided in the tent to collect the used toilet paper. This used paper should be collected and burned on site. Make sure that your wash your hands after each use.
- One of the major ecological problems in Nepal is deforestation. Make sure that the guides on your trip use an alternate fuel source for cooking such as kerosene or gas. Fire wood should never be bought from villages. Wood for an occasional campfire should only be driftwood collected from the river.
- Minimize the use of detergent or soaps in the river.
- Please use iodine or other means of water purifiers instead of bottled mineral water.
- If you fish in these rivers, please remember that the local population depends on these indigenous species for their livelihood and survival.
- Avoid collection and purchasing of wild animal parts, it's illegal.
- Modesty in dress is recommended when in contact with the local villagers. Clothing or lack of is where many rafters cause unintended offense. For women, a top that covers the shoulders, loose pants or calf length skirts are appropriate dress. Short shorts or skin tight lycra not only degrades the wearer in the villagers eyes but also other foreign women by association. A loongi (cotton wrap around ankle length skirt) is the traditional dress and can be bought for a nominal price at almost any bazaar. For men, knee shorts are acceptable but it is recommended that you always wear a shirt.
- When swimming or bathing please do so with reasonable amount of discretion and try not to disturb any local that might be in the area.
- Modesty and neatness are especially appreciated when visiting monasteries, religious ceremonies, or private homes. Dress discretely an in line with local custom and you will be more readily respected and accepted by the local community.
- Channel your generosity. Never giver gifts (pens, candy, money, etc) to begging children. This only demeans the people and breaks up the fabric of the local society. If you want to give something, give to an organization that benefits the entire community (such as a school, monastery, temple or non-profit organization). However, handicapped and religious mendicants are traditionally supported through handouts. Either food or a few rupees are appropriate. It is customary to leave a small donation when visiting monasteries.
- Wash your hands with clean treated water before each meal. Follow this simple rule and you will greatly reduce your chances of becoming ill.
- Consider all water to be contaminated and not safe for drinking unless sterilized / boiled. Sterilization can be done by the use of iodine or chlorine. Ask your guide about the correct dosages for each.
River Grading System
- Rivers are graded on a level I to VI, I being flat water and VI being considered a serious risk to life or not runable. Class III and IV are usual limits of commercial rafting. Since the difficulty of river changes with flows discuss the current water levels with your rafting company to ensure you are aware of what sort of rapids your will be running.
- The easiest precaution you can take to ensure your personal safety is to book your trip with a registered and reputable rafting company
- Always check with your guide before removing your life jacket or helmet.
- Two rafts are safer than one.
- Please ensure that your rafting trip organizer has obtained a rafting permit from the Ministry of Tourism and Civil Aviation before rafting anywhere in Nepal.
The code of conduct is endorsed by All Nepal River Guides Association (ANRGA) and Nepal Association of Rafting Agents ( NARA).