On 25th April 2015, Nepal was hit with the earthquake of Magnitude 7.9, which was followed by strong aftershocks on 26th April and 12th May. The earthquake shook the whole nation with more than 8000 death toll, thousands injured and the destruction of many buildings around the country. The earthquake and the aftershocks destroyed houses, building, historical monuments, including centuries old palaces and temples listed in the UNESCO world heritage sites.
The earthquake triggered an avalanche on the Mount Everest and the famous trekking region of Manaslu and Langtang. The Langtang Village faced the catastrophe during the earthquake, as the entirety of the village got buried by an avalanche that came from thousands of feet above. On 12th May, a major aftershock of 7.3 magnitude struck eastern Nepal near the Mount Everest. Everest Base Camp had the misfortune of being hit by avalanche in which many people lost their lives and many guest houses in the area has been destroyed due to the Earthquake.
Worst Affected Regions:
The Central region of the country was highly affected by the earthquake. The earthquake had the devastating effects on the trekking regions in the region. The worst affected trekking regions in Nepal are Langtang, Gorkha, Rolwaling, Ganesh Himal (Ruby Valley), Manaslu and Tsum Valley. Unfortunately, these regions need to rebuild its infrastructure and trekking in the region will probably be closed until 2016. Many people are optimistic that later in the year the routes may be opened again, but prudent to wait for an official assessment from the Trekking Agents Association of Nepal (TAAN) who are organizing an assessment trip pretty soon.
Although Everest Region was affected by the April‘s earthquake. The infrastructural damage is expected to repair and rebuild and the roads blocked by avalanches in the region are expected to be opened by the September 2015. Thus trekking in this region may be possible by the autumn 2015. However, some changes in the itinerary or route may be suggested for the trekking.
Least affected Regions
Not all of the trekking regions of Nepal was affected by the devastating Earthquake. Some of the trekking region even escaped the earthquake without a scratch. The good news is that the trekking region like Kanchenjunga, Makalu, Annapurna, Dhaulagiri, Lower and Upper Mustang, Dolpo, Humla and Jumla escaped the widespread damage and will be opened by the trekking season in Autumn 2015. The famous Annapurna region has been untouched by the earthquake therefore you may consider planning your trip to the beautiful Pokhara city and even start trekking the Annapurna trails under the shadow of breathtaking mountain ranges.
The greatest accomplishment is not in never falling, but in rising again after you fall.- Vince Lombardi
Despite the damages seen in the cultural monuments in the country, Nepalese are still able to welcome visitors to their wonderful country. Roads and air transport links are intact across the country and the majority of hotels and restaurants are already back in operation. Locals and the authorities are actively involved in relief and rebuilding operation. The magnificent mountains and the stunning landscapes, still await its admirers and the people of the region are actively rebuilding their lives to welcome the visitors wholeheartedly. Tourist destinations like Pokhara, Chitwan, Bardia, Bandipur and Lumbini had the minimum effect of the earthquake and is all set to welcome visitors and adventure lovers.
Nepal’s Economy lies heavily on Tourism and Nepal will certainly need the income that tourism brings as it attempts to recover from this disaster. The greatest help for Nepal at this moment can be done is by going to Nepal on holiday and keeping the economy going into a region that is very dependent on tourism. This will not only will this help the economy, bringing in much needed income, but will also support the Nepalese people by giving them a confidence boost during their post-earthquake rebuilding phase.