January 14, 2015
Number of tourists visiting Annapurna Region, home to different trekking trails including the world famous Annpurna Round Trek, increased by 15 percent to 129,966 in 2014, according to Annapurna Conservation Area Project (ACAP).
The region had welcomed 129,966 tourists in 2013.
Annapurna Region is rich in natural beauty and cultural diversity. The region is home to numerous vantage points from where tourists can enjoy magnificent views of some of the tallest peaks on earth. These features make Annapurna Region one of the best destinations for trekking.
“The number of tourists increased even though many had cancelled their trip due to blizzards in the middle of peak season i.e. October which claimed many lives,” Lal Prasad Gurung, chief of ACAP, said. “If it were not for the unfortunate incident, the number would have increased by a bigger margin.”
ACAP charges entry fees of Rs 200 for tourists from SAARC countries and Rs 2,000 for tourists from other countries. Similarly, the government charges permit fee of US$ 500 per person for tourists heading to Upper Mustang — a controlled trekking area.
Not only foreign tourists, the number of Nepalis visiting different parts of the Annapurna region is increasing in recent years. According to Dum Bahadur Pun of Myagdi, Nepalis mostly visit the region during Dashain and Tihar holidays.
ACAP, however, does not maintain record of Nepali trekkers. Thousands of Nepalis are estimated to visit the region every year.
Annapurna Region has different trekking trails ranging from short trails which can be completed in three days to longer trails which take as much as two weeks. Most of the foreign trekkers prefer the popular Mini Annapurna Circuit trek.