• ZenTravels-BRTNepal
  • sbgl
  • sahara
  • ace-advertise

Quake-hit Nepal reopens Annapurna circuit after experts give all clear

BY GOPAL SHARMA, KATHMANDU, (Reuters): Nepal reopened its most popular trekking trail to tourists on Thursday after international experts said it was safe, three months after two devastating earthquakes led the government to close most hiking routes.Miyamoto International, a California-based structural engineering company, said in a report that quake-related damage in the Annapurna region “was very limited”.

Less than 1 percent of the route and 3 percent of guest houses along the Annapurna circuit were damaged, it said, adding the report for the Everest region would be completed shortly.

Nepal had asked the company to assess the safety of its most popular tourist trekking trails, including in the Everest region, after the twin earthquakes killed almost 9,000 people and shook mountains triggering avalanches.

Among the victims were scores of climbers and guides.

The Annapurna and the Everest region receive more than 140,000 hikers, or 70 percent of all climbers and trekkers who visit Nepal each year.

The 240-km Annapurna circuit takes almost three weeks to complete. It is dubbed the “apple pie” circuit because teahouses line the route offering cold beer and home baking.

Government officials say tourists arrivals may decline by about 40 percent in 2015 because of safety concerns.The Himalayan nation is one of the poorest in the world and many people depend on tourism for their income.

Climbing on Mount Everest is closed for the second season in a row after Sherpas refused to rebuild broken paths across a deadly glacier after the earthquake struck.

The Langtang valley, Nepal’s third most popular trekking destination, remains closed after the first quake in April triggered a catastrophic landslide.

(Reporting by Gopal Sharma; Editing by Malini Menon and Alison Williams)

Published Date: Thursday, July 23rd, 2015 | 08:41 PM

Your Responses

N24 Exclusive

View All

A Troubled Family: NATO turns 70 Saturday, December 7th, 2019

Summit anniversaries are not usually this abysmally interesting. While those paying visits to Watford, England on the occasion of the seventieth anniversary of the North..

Measuring Growth Democratically Friday, December 6th, 2019

The Arab World Needs a Brexit Debate Thursday, December 5th, 2019

Presidents versus the Press Thursday, December 5th, 2019