Annapurna before sunset

I love Nepal. If I were going to return to any of the countries I’ve visited in the last six months, Nepal would be my first choice.

However, if Nepal was the first country I’d visited on my travels, I don’t think I would have liked it. The reason is, it’s just not a comfy, clean country. In fact, it is the dirtiest country I’ve visited and it takes a while to get accustomed to other ways of life when you are from a western country. There is trash everywhere. Just when you think you’ve escaped it, you’ll see a nice ravine piled high with it. That also makes it smell like trash or burning trash, sometimes mixed with incense.

Finding a clean room to sleep in is not always easy. My rooms have come with issues like smelling like gasoline, no sheets on the bed, only a dirty blanket and frequent power outages. This is just from a tourist perspective, but when you look at the nation, there are also the huge, glaring, unavoidable problems of poverty, poor healthcare, and child marriages to name a few.

So why do I love Nepal? I like it because the people are incredibly kind. Because it has the most spectacular mountains and countryside I have ever seen. The people are so poor but so happy to share. They are kind are very curious towards travelers. They all want to know where you are from, if this is your first visit to Nepal, and why you didn’t bring your family. They also need to know if you like Nepal. Then, they always need to know if you are married, if you aren’t, you need to explain why. After the interrogation, it is only polite to the ask if they are married; they almost always are. This curiosity isn’t typical for most countries with lots of tourists. Other countries just want to take your money and get you out of there. Vietnam makes a game out of seeing how much they can scam their tourists. The Nepalese aren’t like that. They are friendly. They treat tourists with friendly curiosity.

The mountains were an unbelievable site, but the people were what made this experience.  Two of the most common hikes are Annapurna Base Camp and Everest Base Camp.  I did Annapurna because it’s supposed to be the more scenic of the two.  If you’d like to read more in depth about the trip, you can find information here.

View from Annapurna Base Camp

Day 1

Day 2

Day 3

Day 4

Day 5

Day 6

I’m leaving now, humbled and happy for the time I spent here.