Kathmandu: As the tourist season begins in Nepal, the number of tourists visiting the Annapurna region has increased.
According to the Annapurna Conservation Area Project (ACAP), Kathmandu, 24665 tourists have received permission to visit the Annapurna region between September 1st and October 15th, 2019.
According to Rajendra Joshi, in-charge of the ACAP Entrance Fee Counter at the Nepal Tourism Board, the tourists from SAARC as well as other countries received permission for one and a half months. According to him, the highest number of tourists are going for the Annapurna Circuit Trek. 8,099 people took permission for this trek in a month and a half.
Similarly, 4,562 tourists for Annapurna Sanctuary, 2,872 tourists for Ghorepani – Poon Hill trek, 1,947 tourists for Muktinath trek, 1,666 tourists for Ghorepani – Ghandruk trek, 1,182 tourists for other trails, and 1,066 tourists for the Upper Mustang trek have taken the permission.
Trekkers who trek to Annapurna Circuit in Annapurna Conservation Area must obtain the Entrance Card of Annapurna Conservation Area Project (ACAP) and the Trekkers Information Management System (TIMS) card from Nepal Tourism Board.
The ACAP is raising tariffs of NRs 1,000 for tourists from SAARC countries NRs 3,000 from other countries and NRs 100 for Nepali nationals including VAT.
Similarly, Nepal Tourism Board is charging NRs 2,000 per person for TIMS card and the Trekking Agency Association of Nepal (TAAN) is charging NRs 1000 per person.
Of the amount collected, Nepal Tourism board takes 30%, Trekking Agency Association, Nepal (TAAN) takes 30%, 30% has to be spent in tourism development by the coordination of two boards and the remaining 10% has to be spent in labor welfare fund.
Except Kathmandu, ACAP has been collecting fees from counters in Pokhara and Besisahar, Lamjung. The tourist visiting the Annapurna conservation area has to pay double the amount of entry fee if he or she enters the protected area without getting the entry permit. Once a tourist enters a protected area, he/she should get permission again to travel to other areas.
There are five districts of Lamjung, Manang, Mustang, Kaski, and Myagdi under the Annapurna conservation area.
The counters for entry permits of the Annapurna trekking route are located in Besisahar, Dhampus, Birethati, and Tatopani outside of Kathmandu.
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