Posted by Hatka Hatnaa Posted on 10:38:00 PM
The Situation on the Ground: Although Kathmandu—and Nepal—have long attracted
adventurous travelers, the country’s April 2015 earthquake, which killed 8,000 and wrought about $10 billion (half of Nepal’s GDP) in damages, decimated the country’s tourism industry. Kathmandu’s Durbar Square, a UNESCO-listed compound of palaces dating back as far as the tenth century, was partially destroyed, as was another of Kathmandu’s iconic structures: the 19th-century Dharahara tower.A year later, however, Nepal’s situation is, if not what it once was, then nonetheless stable. And although several of Kathmandu’s most famous tourist structures have been damaged or destroyed by the earthquake, others—like the fifth-century Pashupatinath Temple and the relic-containing stupa of Boudhanath, now undergoing restorations—remain largely, if not entirely, intact.Why Go Now: Power may not be a constant (nor are paved roads) but for travelers willing to sacrifice a degree of comfort for a sense of adventure, Nepal’s draw remains. Nepal’s economy, deeply reliant on the tourism trade, is more in need than ever of visitors. While the earthquake has damaged Nepal’s man-made structures, its mountain trails—including the legendary Annapurna Circuit through the snowcapped shadow of the Himalaya—remain accessible. Only two of Nepal’s 35 listed trails have been rerouted as a result of earthquake damage, and as early as last summer, all of the Annapurna trail’s bridges were successfully tested for safety.