Canyoning location at Mahabhir River of Durlung, Kushma Ward 3. Photo: Chhabilal Tiwari/ Republica
PARBAT, Jan 17: Water canyoning sport has been started at Mahabhir River of Durlung in Parbat district, targeting both domestic and foreign tourists.
According to Uddim Bahadur Gurung, president of Community Development Center, water canyoning was started for the first time in the Dhaulagiri region targeting adventure tourists.
“Professional canyoning has a huge potential for the promotion of tourism. That is why we have started water canyoning,” said Golman Gurung, a local and initiator of the sport. “We registered a company named Durlung Canyoning and Caving Pvt Ltd, and started water canyoning here.”
“It should be promoted like other adventure activities such as mountaineering, trekking, rafting, paragliding and bungee jumping,” president Gurung told Republica.
The location of water canyoning is seven kilometers away from Kushma Bazar, the district headquarters.
Together with the canyoning, locals have also started home-stay for tourists at Chanaute, which is 30 minutes far from Kushma Bazar.
President Gurung, who is also a retired colonel of Nepal Army, said that they expect large number tourists coming from Pokhara, the famous tourist city of Nepal, which is just two and half hours’ drive from the location.
“We hope that this will play a huge role for the development of tourism industry in our district,” he said, adding, “It will also create employment opportunities for the locals.”
Currently, water canyoning is operated in more than 20 districts across the country, including Lamjung, Kaski, Kathmandu, Sindhupalchwok, and Nuwakot. However, this is the first attempt in the Dhaulagiri region. The Community Development Center is coordinating with Trekking Agencies’ Association of Nepal (TAAN) for the operation of canyoning.
Integrated Community Development Center of the district has assured that the development of tourism infrastructure will go along with the preservation of environment.
“Most of the development works are carried out neglecting the environment,” Golman Gurung said. “But our project will take care of preservation of environment while developing the tourism industry.”
The company has started the adventure activity in Durlung, coordinating with a company located in England, K and Canon UK. “They have supported us on the technical parts of canyoning,” president Gurung said, adding, “We are also providing professional training to three locals from the village for operation of canyoning.”
Supporting infrastructure for canyoning will be built around the location with an investment of Rs 1.2 million. Samjhana Karki, who has recently been a part of test phase at the Durlung water canyoning, said that this place has more potential and is very pleasant in comparison to other places. She has already done canyoning at more than half dozen places.
A survey report of the company has shown that four places of the Mahabhir River are suitable for at least 110-meter-long canyoning.