Nepal Travel info

Communication Facilities

Postal Services: The Central Post Office located near Dharahara Tower, is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday through Friday. The counters are open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and provide stamps, postcards and aerograms. Express Mail Service (EMS) is available at GPO and at Thamel, Basantapur and airport postal counters.

Telephone Services and Cell Phones: Telephone and fax services are available at the Nepal Telecommunications Corporation at Tripureshwar. Hotels and private communications centers provide long distance telephone and fax facilities. Cell phones are widely use and Sim cards are available in major towns. For calling from outside, country code for Nepal is 977 and the area code for Kathmandu is 1.

Internet Services: There are countless Internet cafes and communication centers have opened up in the Valley and around the country. Visitors only have to find a place they are most comfortable in to use the facilities to keep in touch with home. Internet services are also offered by hotels.

Currency

 Currency of Nepal is known as Rupee which comes in notes of 1,2,5,10,20,25,50,100,500 and 1000. Coins known as paisa comes in 5,10,25,50 and 100.Rupees coins are also used: 1, 2, 5 & 10.One Nepali Rupee is made up of 100 paisa. Foreign currencies must be exchanged only through the banks or authorized foreign exchange dealers.

Foreign Currency and Credit Cards

Payment in hotels, travel agencies, and airlines are made in foreign exchange. Credit cards like American Express, Master and Visa are widely accepted at major hotels, shops, and restaurants. Travelers should  keep their Foreign Exchange Encashment Receipt while making foreign exchange payments or transferring foreign currency into Nepalese rupees. The receipts may be needed to change left-over Nepalese Rupees into hard currency before leaving the country. ATM is widely in use in Kathmandu.

Time and Business Hours

Business hours within the Kathmandu Valley: Government offices are open from 10 am to 5 p.m. from Sunday through Thursday and close at 3pm on Friday in the Kathmandu Valley. During the winter, they close at 4 pm. Most Business offices are open from 10 am to 5 p.m. Sunday through Friday. Embassies and international organizations are open from 9 am to 5 pm Monday through Friday. Most shops open after 10 am and close at about 8 pm and are usually closed on Saturdays.

Business hours outside the Kathmandu Valley:  Government offices outside Kathmandu valley open from 10 am to 5 p.m. from Sunday through Thursday. On Fridays they remain open until 3 pm. Banks are open from Sunday through Thursday from 10 am to 3 pm. On Fridays, banks remain open until 12 pm only. Business offices are open from 10 am to 5 pm Sunday through Friday. Recently many private banks have re-organized to have different branches open at various different times making banking hours longer. If one branch is closed another will be open.

Holidays: Nepal observes numerous holidays, at the least a couple in a month. So please check the holiday calendar. The longest holiday in Nepal is during the Dashain festival in late September or October. Government offices observe all the national holidays and banks observe most of them. Businesses observe major holidays only.

Time

Nepal Time is 5 hour 45 minutes ahead of Greenwich Mean Time and 15 minutes ahead of Indian Standard Time.

Weekend

Saturday is the official holiday in Nepal.

Electric Current

220 Volts/50 cycles. Most of the villages, cities of the kingdom are accessed with electricity

Best Season/ Weather

Nepal’s weather is generally predictable and pleasant. The best season to visit Nepal is after the monsoons that end in August, and before the winter sets in. The months between September and December are the most preferred ones by the visitors. The rains wash the dusty tracks and the valley looks magnificent with blooming flowers. Post -monsoon Nepal welcomes you with flower-laden plains and brimming rivers. It is humid in plains at that time but it is still better than the scorching heat of the summers. Summer and late spring temperatures range from 28ºC (83ºF) in the hill regions to more than 40ºC (104ºF) in the Terai. The Kathmandu Valley, at an altitude of 1310m,  has a mild climate, ranging from 19-27ºC (67-81ºF) in summer, and 2-20ºC (36-68ºF) in winter.

It is best to visit hilly areas in summers; that is, the month of May and June. The average temperature at that time hovers around 22-25 Celsius. Nights are a bit chilly in the lower Himalayan region but are comfortable. Mountainous areas are extremely unsafe in the Monsoons. The persistent rains make the hilly tracts slippery. The landslides are very common in the monsoons. Again in the post-monsoon months, you can start for the hill tours.

In winters, most of the hilly areas become out of bound due to very heavy snowfall and avalanches. Winter temperatures drop to freezing with a high level of snowfall in the mountains But, if you are fond of snowfall then you can opt for lower Himalayan regions that look beautiful in the blankets of snows.

In winter, average maximum and minimum temperatures in the Terai range from a brisk 7ºC (45ºF) to a mild 23ºC (74ºF). The central valleys experience a minimum temperature often falling bellow freezing point and a chilly 12ºC (54ºF) maximum. Much colder temperatures prevail at higher elevations.