Eco friendly travel tips in Nepal

Nepal is one of those countries that have seen one of the worst natural disasters in the recent times. This should be enough of a gentle reminder that you should respect nature and always practice environment friendly practices when exploring such a fragile ecosystem. Nepal has boosted its tourism since the earthquake and because of this a lot of rules and regulations have been overlooked by the travel operators.

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Easy travel rules should not be the reasons for you to become an irresponsible traveller. Certain eco friendly ways of travelling will certainly help the country’s eco-system in more ways than you would imagine.

How to be an eco-friendly traveller in Nepal

Don’t buy plastic bottles, refill instead

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Nepal takes plastic accumulation very seriously. Despite complaints of locations like Everest and Annapurna Circuit filled with bottles, the water management is being taken care of in a smart way. All the hotels, restaurants and hostels in Nepal offer free water refill. A few charge as low as INR 30 but that is still cheaper than buying a bottle and then throwing it away. A thermoflask will keep your water fresh and drinkable for at-least 24 hours and if you forget to carry yours then don’t worry, you will find a good bottle in the trekking shops of Kathmandu and Pokhara.

Avoid private vehicles, use bus and shared taxis

Kathmandu-Pokhara-Tourist-Bus
Via – http://www.nestadventure.com

Nepal’s economic situation is not very helpful for locals. But for tourists it means that they can spend their vacation in a lavish way and often hire private cars to commute. Using buses and shared cars are a better way to reduce your carbon footprint. There are plenty of shared vehicles in tourist destinations and go easier on the pocket.

Bring your waste from Everest Base Camp and other trek destinations

Nepal has been infamous for irresponsible trekking. There is tons of trash around Everest Base Camp and Annapurna Circuit among many others. If you are planning a trek to any such location then try to carry your waste back. If you use same bottle and refill during treks, use menstrual cups rather than throwing sanitary pads away and carrying back packets of chips to the base, it will help in keeping the location clean, even if it is on a very minute scale.

Support local businesses

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Nepal has seen rapid commercialization of tourism industry over the last few years. This has brought a number of hotel, fast food and supermarket chains in the country. Choosing them over a local business is not fruit bearing because the citizens involved with travel industry of the country fail to gain profit from your presence in the city. Yes, these chains employ locals from that country but a huge margin of the profit goes out of the country where its head office is actually present. Supporting local businesses will prove helpful for them and they will be able to thrive in the market for a longer time and provide better services.

Buy ecofriendly products

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Via – http://thedromomaniac.com

Nepal has a number of organizations that promote eco friendly products. From jute bags to notepads made of elephant poop, these products are friendly to environment and decompose after they become obsolete. Purchasing such materials will take you a step closer to reducing your carbon footprint in the long run.

Don’t promote elephant safari

This is a debatable topic but I am sure that sitting on an animal to explore its own home doesn’t make any sense. Despite elephant conservation going strongly in the country, elephant safari is a very mean way to interact with an animal. Instead, you can donate the same amount at the elephant breeding centre, buy some fruits (they like bananas) and offer them for an evening snack. They’ll remember you the next time you come to visit them.

Nepal’s fragile eco-system needs your help and support. Being responsible tourist may be a little tough but it is rewarding for your children and the future generations. My tips apply for many such destinations and you can make small efforts in order to save the nature and become a nice human being in process.

16 thoughts on “Eco friendly travel tips in Nepal

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  1. I love this post. You’ve really hit all the major points, and you offer some great and creative ideas. It is really good to hear that hotels are offering free water refills, but it definitely requires both businesses/government support as well as help from tourists to prevent environmental damage. I recently moved to Vietnam where single-use plastic is rampant. Consumers can do their part but businesses here have to adapt as well. I totally agree with your point about the elephants as well. I’ve read that their backs cannot support the weight of humans so it’s best to not ride no matter where in the world you visit. Thanks for your post!

    1. Thanks for going through it. Third world countries are first to suffer with the problem of irresponsible waste disposal and a solution is needed. This is the call of the hour and everyone should do their bit.

  2. I am so happy to see that more and more people care about the environment and are willing to make a change. I am such a big advocate of eco-friendly travel and I hope many will take note of thee tips before going to Nepal or anywhere else in the world.

  3. Good tips and advice here. I’ve been reading a lot lately about the environmental impacts of over tourism in Nepal and at Everest. We can never have too many reminders about the impacts of our travels. Hopefully, travelers will start changing their behaviors to help reduce or eliminate some of these problems.

  4. I love your tips o eco-friendly travel and the graffiti out there. It’s so important to reming people how they can travel without harming environment nowadays. Especially when it comes to animals use and safaris. Thanks for this post.

  5. I think not using plastic bottles is something we should follow in general, no matter where we are travelling to. I completely agree with not leaving your waste behind on Mt Everest, I ma seeing so many pictures of how bad the situation is up there with the litter. Using public transportation is also a great idea.

  6. It is so important to keep these things in mind while you are traveling anywhere. Thanks for the share. I like to take public transport and always carry my own cutleries and straw. Saying no to plastic is totally urgent. I hope people can be more responsible now.

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