Nepal

Nepal is a land of amazing extremes. Altitude ranges from near sea level to the highest point on the planet- the summit of Mt. Everest at 8848 meters- all within a north-south distance of around 200 kilometers. This extraordinary topographical variation allows Nepal to be home to an equally diverse flora and fauna. In addition to the superb natural beauty, Nepal is also home to a remarkable number of ethnic groups, cultures, traditions and languages. It is undoubtedly one of the finest places in the world to enjoy a relaxing vacation- be it simple sightseeing tours or the more challenging adventure activities.

Recorded history of Nepal is centered on the Kathmandu valley and begins with the Kirantis who are said to have ruled for many centuries beginning from the 7th or 8th Century B.C. with their famous King Yalumber who is even mentioned in the epic, ‘Mahabharata’. The Gopalas who were herdsmen are believed to have ruled before the Kirantis but little is known about them. Their descendants are said to still live at the edge of the valley. Around 300 A.D. the Lichavis arrived from northern India and overthrew the Kirantis. The descendants of the Kirantis are the Rais and Limbus who predominate in eastern Nepal. One of the legacies of the Lichavis is the fabulous Changu Narayan temple near Bhaktapur which dates back to the 5th Century. In early 7th Century, Amshuvarman, the first Thakuri king took over the throne from his father-in-law who was a Lichavi. He married off his daughter Bhrikuti to the famous Tibetan King Tsong Tsen Gampo thus establishing good relations with that country. Bhrikuti went on to convert the king to Buddhism. The Lichavis brought art and architecture to the valley but the Golden age of creativity arrived with the Mallas who came to power around 1200 A.D.