NEPAL GREAT HIMALAYA TREKS…Lovely Nepal ‘awakening’ for a nation wrecked by a catastrophic earthquake…
Since the time of its establishment, Nepal Great Himalaya Treks has played a major role on Nepal’s tourism circuits for over a decade, and we have stood witness to a string of disasters that included earthquakes in the years gone by, but the country’s tourism industry survived and flourished despite the hits; however, what followed from the 25th April of the year 2015 onward has been phenomenal and absolutely catastrophic. We knew it was coming but didn’t know when. It was probably at the back of the minds of some citizens who reckoned ‘it was still coming to come’ but gave up waiting – till it hit us finally with a force most folks will never ever forget. Will we rise from the dust and destruction this time around? Despite the immense loss we’ve experienced, NGHT reckons we will – because Nepal is the kind of place that will forever keep you under its spell…come what may. We will rise from the rubble, to rebuild again…and this will come about even faster if Nepal’s nature lovers join NGHT to assist us with the massive challenges in the days ahead – please read on to know how mother nature can be ‘Beauty…and the Beast’:
It was a bleak Saturday afternoon on the 25th April with weak sunshine, a much sought after weekend, the only holiday of a 6 day working week in a world where most countries enjoy two days of a weekend throughout the month. Today was a Saturday anyways and most Nepalese tend to make the best of it. Some spend the day at home spring cleaning, washing clothes or bathing while some get occupied with preparing a delicious weekend meal. And there are those who venture out of home in a holiday mood.
Some families were happily shopping in the Sundhara area close to Nepal’s iconic monument ‘Dharahara’ built in 1832 AD. While at the other end of town, a young happy mother was seen walking out of the Tribhuwan Teaching hospital with her new born baby in tow with her family; at the same time some giggling tourists were frolicking with the pigeons while feeding them at Basantapur Durbar Square…and it was at this time, precisely 11.56 am by the clock – when the earth below Kathmandu began to rumble with eerie sounds…and all hell broke loose. Initially, some people didn’t know what hit them till the realization set in that this was a powerful earthquake of a magnitude of 7.9 by the Richter scale, and numerous buildings including world renowned heritage sites throughout the three ancient cities of Kathmandu, Patan and Bhaktapur crumpled to the earth like a deck of cards in a pile of dust and debris, including Kathmandu’s famous landmark the Dharahara tower, reduced to a stump. By eventide and the morn that followed, incoming reports of thousands losing their lives, houses flattened in Kathmandu and most of the hilly regions of Nepal was just the tip of the iceberg; the 25th April – a Saturday – will go down as a day of ‘infamy’ in Nepal’s records, never ever to be forgotten.
A lot of the ancient capital’s survivors were heard muttering in the aftermath of deadly aftershocks, one of 6.7 on the Richter scale the following day at high-noon, that Nepal – ‘abode of the gods’ was paying for its ‘greedy sins’ and the gods were angered with Nepal. It’s unknown whether any of the many gods in Nepal were angry with our disaster struck nation; but one thing was for certain, nature was taking its course and seismological experts had been predicting for almost a decade that Nepal was due a ‘big one’ since the last deadly quake in 1934. Despite an earthquake disaster management centre being set up with assistance from the UN, preparations by different governments through a decade of political turmoil were tardy and a nation and its peoples were caught unawares, causing death and destruction of immense proportions throughout the country.
A proud history of 1000 years torn to shreds in seconds
Before that fateful Saturday of 25 April, the towering temples and palaces of the Kathmandu Valley were the gems of a nation rich in cultural treasures, giving Nepal’s capital a skyline that could be easily identified straightaway just like London or Paris. It is this concentrated skyline of magnificent monuments of ancient architecture all assembled at one spot that caused almost all of the Kathmandu Valley to be added to the UNESCO World Heritage list in 1979 in recognition of its historical value of almost a thousand years; today, this history now lies in rubbles of wooden plinths and fine bricks of medieval crafting, torn to shreds…as the locals of the three ancient cities of Kathmandu, Patan and Bhaktapur watched on in horror.
It is in the wake of these tragic catastrophic circumstances when Nepal Great Himalaya Treks decided to tell the world to help us awaken and inspire the hopes of a nation still reeling from a wave of major quakes that has not only taken lives but also left a chain of destruction on our historical monuments. This also includes wrecking havoc on our beautiful mountains with avalanches and dangerous landslides, taking the lives of many that included both, the local folks and trekkers alike, who love Nepal’s mountains.
All said and done with the unfolding of these most disastrous events that have run the course of nature, and with more to come, will Nepal recover from this massive blow – and will its Tourism survive??
NGHT sees a bright little light burning like a candle in the wind for Nepal in the days ahead. Not all of our monuments have been destroyed. Initial reports mentioned 80% damages of our heritage sights that were later proved wrong. Much of Kathmandu, Patan and Bhaktapur’s ancient landmarks still stand despite the destructive quakes and when the dust settles, will soon be opened for visitors and lovers of medieval architecture.
We now call upon our well wishers, nature lovers and all of Nepal’s daring trekkers and mountain climbers to visit Nepal again after this destructive natural calamity that caught us unawares. Your visit will revive the lost hopes of a traumatized landlocked nation and your very presence on the streets of Kathmandu’s central tourists’ hubs and on trails that once faced the brunt of deadly landslides flattening whole villages and taking life in its wake; will inspire the resilience of millions left homeless and once again bring that beacon of a lost hope and a smile on the faces of thousands who will see that after all, despite the tragedies…that life is still worth living for.
Come the fall of 2016, the monsoons will soon dissipate and the skies of Nepal will be lit up with the brightness of turquoise blue that heralds the peak season of Nepal, a whole nation expects that you will make your reservations now and it is vital that you know that every dollar you spend in this naturally beautiful country will educate a child victim of this disaster, will feed a family, build a shelter for the millions that are homeless and keep someone employed…perhaps, a little more than all of this; your visit will help thousands to psychologically forget the countless tragedies that befell so many and instill a kind of happiness and hope that was never really experienced before. Millions of affected Nepalese in their villages, towns, cities and on the mountains would wish that you don’t think of Nepal as an ongoing disaster, but a country that has found its way back and still has numerous monuments standing tall and many beautiful trekking zones that can be still safe to trek in.
Rise with us and share in the glory of the ‘winds of change’ that you will witness in Nepal. Today’s rubble are tomorrow’s challenges, today’s death and destruction will be tomorrow’s new beginnings, today’s faces of desolation and misery will be tomorrow’s spirit to fight the formidable obstacles with courage and faith; and when the sun dips at dusk, the full moon will rise to display its light on the darkness that engulfed the tragedies that befell the land, to make way for the sunshine of hope that will rise through the openings of Nepal’s beautiful mountains on the morrow…and the unconquerable will of the Nepalese people will fight the odds and rebuild from the ashes of this recent catastrophe that struck this landlocked nation…and no earthquakes will be able to relinquish that desire…that ferocious grit of the Nepali people… to move on…
In this year of 2017, ‘Nepal Great Himalaya Treks’ hopes things will change for the best, with a renewed hope that globetrotters from across the world will visit Nepal for its true beauty, in the light of the facts that ‘Lonely Planet’ has declared Nepal to be one of the top 10 hottest destinations for some of the greatest adventures ever known to planet earth, & in this NGHT will happily invite our honored guests to visit their favorite destination Nepal again and be witness to the great changes our landlocked Himalayan nation has overcome with your love and support…we hope to see you soon!