Nepal – travelling with purpose
Spectacular mountain scenery, picturesque villages and
diverse culture, together with a network of superb trekking trails is what
makes Nepal so irresistible and keeps people coming back year after year.
Travel guide LYN TAYLOR, shares why every woman needs to take time out to
undertake the adventure of their lifetime.
The city of Kathmandu offers travellers a cultural
diversity experience like no other. It’s a melting post of exploration.
Navigating your way through the maze of vendors, vehicles, and people shoving
items and themselves into vehicles is like walking through a herd of elephants on
wheels - except the elephants would pay more attention and belch less smoke.
It’s an extremely interesting and engaging country in
which until recent years not much English was spoken. Only today is English
starting to become a common tongue. However, when it comes to signage most
directions and bus routes etc. are still displayed in Nepali, so it’s best to
learn the language, or join a guided trip.
For safety purposes many women do prefer to visit as part
of a guided tour group from Australia. This way they are accompanied by someone
who speaks both English and the local language. A guide will also be well
versed on the cultural code and accustomed to getting them the best information
and deals in Nepal.
guided tour also ensures that you live the life of a local and that you don’t
miss out on the gems that Kathmandu’s alleyways conceal. Every day thousands of
visitors, expats and Nepali’s alike walk on by oblivious to what lies beyond
the doorways… unmarked and low, they appear to go into someone’s home, but
further down another doorway, and then another. With a guide you get the
opportunities to take a peek and plunge into the hidden world of mystery that
most travellers do not dare to explore. Therein lays a world that is both private
and public, each courtyard holding its own history and story, some that go back
well into the 15th century.
Whilst travelling through Kathmandu and surrounding areas
you can’t help by notice the colour. It’s
everywhere as you wander along any street in Thamel. You’ll see many shops
selling felted crafts and goods which are made locally and exported to many
countries all over the world.
The felt production industry is driven by Nepali women as
a means to supporting their families. Felt making, is a job that the women of
Nepal, who often lack a formal education, can perform with ease. You will be
amazed to see their entrepreneurial skills in motion.
Most of the felt factories across Nepal hire women who
create with love, purpose and passion using the workspace to connect with other
women in their community.
To experience the true essence of the Nepali way of life
you can’t miss visiting the various villages dotted throughout this beautiful
country. It is in these villages that you will engage with locals and
experience the beating heart of the Nepali people and their culture.
The destination of Nepal offers the Australian traveller
a place where they can be themselves - a sabbatical far away from the constant
pressure of adhering to the rigid rules of the society in which we live.
Travel Tips for Women:
• Trekking alone is not recommended. Even in the cities,
walking out alone at night can be dangerous. Do not stay in bars and pubs till
late night or respond to anyone who makes advances in bars.
•Never look at maps in public. Try to memorise them in
advance, if you can. In many cities you can buy credit card-size street and
transportation maps — which you can discretely glance at inside your purse.
• Keep your passport with you at all times. You do not
have to store it with the hotel owners, no matter what they say. Make
photocopies of your passport in advance, and hand over one of those.
•Walk like you know where you’re going. Studies show that
if you exude confidence and strength, people are less likely to try to take
advantage of you.
By embarking on a quality tailored holiday adventure to
Nepal, that is well-priced and fully guided you will not only experience new
sights and cultures, you’ll also push the boundaries of your everyday life.
Like many other women you may very well fall in love with
this beautiful country and find yourself returning to use your life and passion
to assist local Nepali women with community renewal, education and
Nepal is a must for your bucket list and one of the most
exciting destinations in the world today.