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March 3, 2020

Corona effect all-pervasive in Annapurna trek

Annapurna base camp

Pokhara: The Annapurna trekking route has seen no human mobility due to fear stemming from the global epidemic of coronavirus.  The Annapurna circuit trek, which starts with counter-clockwise from Lamjung district headquarters, Beshisahar, ends at Pokhara in Kaski.

There used to be a huge inflow of tourists to the trek during the season in past years. However, the trek in this season seems to be void.  Surprisingly, there is no mobility of tourists trekking to Manang via Lamjung Besisahar, Khudibhulbhule, Bahundanda and Jagatchyamche. The tourism and hotel entrepreneurs here have been disappointed due to almost-no arrival of tourists and trekkers.

According to tourism entrepreneur Binod Gurung, last year the hotel rooms were fully occupied and there was a situation to accommodate tourists under the tent but this time almost all rooms are empty.

Similar are the stories of other hotel entrepreneurs. Another hotel entrepreneur Mingmar Lama said tourists’ arrival to the trekking route is declining day after day due to reasons including excessive snowfall and epidemic.

The trek route is seen with no tourists in the season, he added. “We are fearful of disease transmission rather than drop-in tourists’ arrival”, he said. Meanwhile, the Manang district administration office has called for locals to remain cautious of tourists and adopt alertness measures about spreading coronavirus (RSS).

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