August 25, 2023: In the Everest region, tourist arrivals have decreased by 82 percent. According to data from the Sagarmatha National Park Office in Namche Solukhumbu, the tourist arrivals in July decreased by 82.65 percent compared to the previous year’s April.
As per the information provided by the National Park, in the past July, 1,199 people visited the Sagarmatha region, while in August, this number decreased to only 208. This decrease accounts for 82.65 percent based on percentage calculation and 991 individuals based on actual numbers. Among the travelers, most were foreigners, but there were also a significant number of domestic tourists, according to Nikunjka’s information officer, Manoj Kumar Mandal.
While August is generally considered an off-season for tourism due to unfavorable weather conditions, this year, even July saw a significant drop in arrivals. Continuous unfavorable weather led to flight cancellations, which impacted the inflow of tourists. Flights to and from Tenzing Hillary Airport in Lukla were affected due to weather-related challenges.
The number of tourists entering the Nikunj region tends to be enthusiastic, but the reported information officer Mandal explained that financial factors, such as the reduction in the number due to bad weather, play a role.
Furthermore, the Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal, emphasizing accident reduction, has implemented additional regulations for takeoffs and landings at difficult airports. Despite these efforts, there have been incidents of aircraft reduction at Lukla’s airstrip. The use of helicopters for transportation has also been restricted by the authority during the year. This has resulted in a decrease in the enthusiasm of tourists coming to Khumbu for trekking.
Tourists visiting for the Khumbu trekking route primarily use the aerial route. While some trekkers use the local trails from Lukla to Kande-Tham-Danda, most prefer to use the air route. Even though a rough road has been built from Salleri to Kande-Tham-Danda, it’s still a challenging journey due to the road’s deterioration over the years, according to travelers.