Nepal

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Overview

Nepal, officially the Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal, is a landlocked central Himalayan country in South Asia. It has a population of 26.4 million, and is the 93rd largest country by area. Bordering China in the north, and India in the south, east, and west, it is the largest sovereign Himalayan state. Nepal does not border Bangladesh, which is located within only 27 km of its southeastern tip. It neither borders Bhutan due to the Indian state of Sikkim being located in between. Nepal has a diverse geography, including fertile plains, subalpine forested hills, and eight of the world's ten tallest mountains, including Mount Everest, the highest point on Earth. Kathmandu is the nation's capital and largest city. It is a multi ethnic nation with Nepaili as the official language.

Kathmandu - The city stands at an elevation of approximately 1,400 metres (4,600 feet) above sea level in the bowl-shaped Kathmandu Valley of central Nepal. The valley is historically termed as 'Nepal Proper', and has been the home of Newar culture, a cosmopolitan urban civilization in the Himalayan foothills. The city was the royal capital of the Kingdom of Nepal and hosts palaces, mansions, and gardens of the Nepales aristocracy. It has been home to the headquarters of the South Asian Association of Regional Cooperation (SAARC) since 1985. Today it is the seat of government of the Nepalese republic established in 2008; and is part of the Bagmati Zone in Nepales administrative geography. Kathmandu has been the center of Nepal's history, art, culture, and economy. It has a multi ethnic population within a Hindu and Buddhist majority. Religious and cultural festivities form a major part of the lives of people residing in Kathmandu.

Tourism is an important part of the economy as the city is the gateway to the Nepalese Himalayas. There are also seven casinos in the city. In 2013, Kathmandu was ranked third among the top ten upcoming travel destinations in the world by TripAdvisor, and ranked first in Asia. Historic areas of Kathmandu were devastated by a 7.8 magnitude earthquake on 25 April 2015. Nepali is the most spoken language in the city, while English is understood by the city's educated residents.


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Statistics

Population:
Nepal is slightly larger than Arkansas. It's population is estimated at 29 million as of July 2016. Kathmandu is the capital city of Nepal, the largest Himalayan state in Asia. It is the largest metropolis in Nepal, with a population of 1.4 million.

Per Capita GDP (Goods and Services Per Person):
Nepal $2,500
United States $55,800
World Average $15,800

Percentage With Access To Improved Water Sources:
Nepal 90%
United States 99%
World Average 91%

Percentage With Access To Improved Sanitation:
Nepal 45%
United States 100%
World Average 86%

Percentage With Internet Access:
Nepal 17%
United States 87%
World Average 39%

Income less than $200 per month:
An average person makes around $6 per day.


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Our Partners

Apple Of God’s Eyes
Learn more about Apple Of God’s Eyes

Five14Nepal
Learn more about Five14Nepal


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Weather

Climatic conditions in Nepal vary from one place to another in accordance with their geographical features. In the north, summers are cool and winters severe. In the south, summers are hot and winters are mild. Nepal has five seasons: spring, summer, monsoon, autumn, and winter.


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Food

Much of the cuisine is a variation on Asian themes. Other foods have hybrid Tibetan, Indian, and Thai origins.

Momo--Tibetan style dumplings with Nepalese spices--are one of the most popular foods in Nepal. They were originally filled with buffalo meat, but now also with goat or chicken, as well as vegetarian preparations.
Special foods such as sel roti and patre are eaten during festivals such as Tihar. New food varieties have been introduced such as taas, similar to shish kebab. Contact with Europeans has introduced loaf bread, cheese, pastries, and ice cream, as well as restaurants serving dishes like pizza, catering originally to tourists, but increasingly to local people too.


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Religion

Hinduism (81.3%), Buddhism (9.0%), Islam (4.4%), Kiratism (3.0%), Christianity (1.4%), Other (0.9%)


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Do's & Don'ts

DO's & Don'ts

  • Be a partner.
  • Realize your group's flurry of activity alters the daily flow of life in the community you are serving.
  • Be adaptable. Any plans can change once you are on the ground in South Africa.
  • Find a way to combine the resources available in-country with your own. Your way may not be the only way so be sensitive to workflow and habits in the community.
  • Build relationships. Take time for them. Do not forget that promoting any kind of change takes time in a relationship.
  • Challenge yourself to pray for at least one person, even if you cannot understand each other.
  • Mirror the body language received from Indian nationals.
  • If someone offers a handshake, DO shake back. If not offered, do NOT initiate.
  • Keep only a copy of your passport with you while out and about. Keep your physical passport in the safe at the hotel.
  • Dress modestly.
  • Expect traffic everywhere!
  • Soak in the vibrant colors & smells.
  • Don't encourage begging by giving money to beggars as they may be trafficked to beg on the streets.
  • Don't wander away from the group at any time.
  • Don't give gifts of any kind (candy, money, promises of returns, your unused computer from the US, your website building skills) to any Indian nationals. This encourages the belief that westerners are affluent and easily swindled.
  • Don't give out personal information to any strangers, church members & people you meet during the Prayer Walk (this includes email addresses, phone numbers, social media profiles, messaging services, etc.).
  • Don't spend all of your time observing and experiencing India through the lens of your camera or phone.

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Time Difference

Nepal Standard Time (NPT) doesn't change like our daylight savings time. So during the winter (after we fall back) they are 10 hours and 45 minutes ahead of us. During our summer (after we spring forward) they are 9 hours and 45 minutes ahead of us. We know that 45 minutes is tricky, but that's the way Nepalworks. When in doubt, just Google 'What time is it in Nepal?' and you'll get an accurate answer.


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Words & Phrases

There are 122 major languages & 1,599 other languages. Hindi and yes, we're serious, English are the official languages in India.

Quick reference to some common words and phrases:

  • Hello - Namaste, Namaskar
  • Bye - Alvida
  • Thank you - Dhanyavaad
  • Good morning - Shubh prabhat, Su prabhat
  • Good night - Shubh ratri
  • Take care - Apna khayal rakhna
  • See you later - Phir milen-gey
  • I - Mai
  • You - Tum/aap (respect)
  • What - Kya
  • To be hungry - bhukh lagna
  • Water - Pani
  • How are you? - Aap kaise hain?
  • I am fine. - Mai achchha hoon.
  • You are welcome. - Aapka swagat hai.
  • Let us meet again. - Fir milenge.
  • My name is ______. - Mera naam ______ hai.
  • What is your name? - Aapka kya naam hai?
  • Where are you? - Aap kahan ho?
  • I'm from (the U.S./India). - Mein (America) se hoon.
  • Can I help you? - Kya mein aapki madad kar sakta sakti (female) hoon?
  • Can you help me? - Kya aap meri madad kar sakteyhain?
  • How much distance to go? - Aur kitni door jana hai?
  • How much is it? - Yeh kitne ka hai?
  • I don't understand. - Mujhey samajh mein nahi aataa.