A lady lecturer who spends all her earning to tour nationBirat Anupam
''Heaven is myth but Nepal is real''''I am in love with these mountains''
''Yangsila, a must-visit place nearby Dharan''
These sentences are neither slogans nor advertisements made by Nepal Tourism Board. They are not promotional points highlighted by travel agencies to sell travel destinations also. These are regular facebook posts made by a traveling lady on her own expenses. Sumeera Gautam , who hails from Tarahara of Itahari, Sunsari, seems like an travel ambassador of our nation. Having toured from Pokhara to Pyuthan and from Gorkha to Gufapokhari, she always inspires others to travel. She encourages making travel a fun. She never writes a facebook post that stirs negative vibes and exhibits childish characters. In a facebook status uploaded after touring a soon-to-be-constructed New Beach and Desert Safari Resort (NBDS) on the bank of Saptakoshi River, she has said :
''Go for whatever makes you happy"
An adventure girl enjoying from paragliding to rafting
Unlike many married ladies who are afraid or shy away from adventure tourism, Gautam is always afoot to try out anything that gives touristic ecstasy. She has made paragliding flight in Pokhara couple of years back. She has experienced rafting in Saptakoshi River from Barahakshetra to Chatara. Making bungee jump, feeling mountain flights to glance tallest peaks of our magical Himalayas, cycling in mountains, enjoying zip ride in Pokhara, trekking to base camps of Mt. Everest, Mt. Makalu, Mt. Kanchanjunga and Mt. Annapurna, rock-climbing and canoeing are on her adventure pipeline in the years ahead. ''Being a Nepalese is an excellent advantage when it comes to travel and tour because we have numerous travel destinations in our own nation'', Gautam talked to Versatile Magazine over telephone, ''It costs millions of rupees for an foreigner to enjoy world-class paragliding, rafting, bungee jump, mountaineering, trekking, mountain flights and the likes. However, a Nepalese can feel this touristic touch within small budget volume as we don't need to invest on exorbitant international airfare and other relatively higher fares like foreigners.'' A passed-out student of Masters in Public Health and Environment from Central Campus of Technology (CCT) Dharan and a lecturer at a private science college of Itahari named Sushma Godawari College, Gautam earns good digits of monthly salary but spends all on traveling. ''I have zero bank balance because I spend all my earning in traveling'', says Gautam, ''After accomplishing all my planned adventure tours, I will switch to other travel options within and outside Nepal.''
''Traveling Nepal is cheap in budget but expensive in beauty''
Gautam says Nepal is only nation in the world offering diverse traveling options within small territory. ''Nepal is confined within 147181 square kilometers in terms of its political territory'', says presumably elated Gautam, ''When we are to talk on touristic tracks, ours is biggest nation in terms of our travel options. We have tallest peaks, birthplace of Lord Buddha and many other natural and religious destinations having unparallel importance in the planet.''
Gautam says she has toured many religious destinations of our nation like Janaki temple of Janakpurdham, Lumbini of Kapilbhastu, Pashupatinath of Kathmandu, Swargadari of Pyuthan, Haleshi of Khotang and Pathibhara of Taplejung, among others. Besides enjoying paragliding and rafting, she has also travelled to Nepal's top natural and historical destinations like Pokhara, Gorkha, Dang, Chitwan, Bhedetar, Guphapokhari, Basantapur, and many more adjoining touristic places of Sunsari. Gautam says Nepal's travel time is bit longer due to topographical variation and difficulties but can be travelled in small budget. ''We don't need passport and visa to tour our nation. We do not need to pay any additional cost to travel all parts of our beautiful nation'', says this travel-addict lady, ''our people are hospitable and our places are heavenly. Opportunity like this is rare in many nations from across the globe. From northern peaks to southern plains and from attractive valleys to beautiful hills and from deserted highlands to valuable places with biodiversities, Nepal has everything except ocean. And to tour and trek these beautiful destinations, we mustn't stay in star hotel. Many budget hotels are in those areas.'' Gautam tells she hasn't found a single district in Nepal that doesn't include any touristic beauty. She compares this touristic beauty with travel budget. 'Traveling Nepal is cheap in budget but expensive in beauty.''
She says she did spend approximately 20 thousand Nepalese rupees (200$) in Pokhara and Pyuthan, 8 thousand (80) in Lumbini and Dang and all other expenses are below 5 thousand (50) for her package tour that included two-way travel fare from Itahari, accommodation and other available recreation like paragliding of Pokhara and jungle safari in Chitwan, and the likes.
'Online promotion and infrastructural overhaul are must''
Gautam has travelled many parts of Nepal. She rowed boat on Fewa Lake of Pokhara, made jungle safari in Sauraha Chitwan occasionally glancing one-horned rhinoceros, sensed the natural intimacy of Swargadwari, viewed magical mountain from Charl's Point of Bhedetar, the list goes on. In her back-to-back touring and trekking time for some recent years, Gautam has felt hospitality of locals, beauty of surrounding, celebration of local costumes and cultures, and many more joys of journeys. What she has not seen is the online promotion of these touristic places globally and speedy developments of roadways, airways and electricity. ''Nepalese are unable to travel our own nation owing to lack of connectivity and promotion'', says Gautam, '' To talk about myself, I want to snap selfie with Mt. Makalu on my backdrop, I want to have mountain flight from Biratnagar which is nearer from our tallest peaks of Mt. Everest and its Himalayan range, I want to make helicopter flight to reach Halesi and Pathibhara which are not far from my own city but our government is making this impossible. I am an example only. There are many more travel enthusiastic fellows who share my sentiment.''
Gautam says speedy and effective online promotions of our touristic destinations to global audience are must. She is also of the opinion to make more roadways, railways, airways, cable car services and many more infrastructural overhauls targeting premium touristic audience.
'If we are to develop infrastructure in global standard and make online promotion globally via internet platforms, we can lure millions of international tourists creating thousands of jobs. 'According to Gautam, many Nepalese are travelling to Indian state of Sikkim and West Bangle largely due to lack of roadways, airways and promotions of our valued touristic places. ''Had there been highways to Makalu base camp and Kanchanjunga base camp, and cable car services to Pathibhara and Halesi, who would travel to Sikkim to see replicas of Chaar Dhaam (four major shrines of Hindus)?'', questions Gautam as we conclude our travel talks for newslaya.com