KATHMANDU, August 3: After the onset of the rainy season, the homestays of Baglung have not been witnessing any guests. In the months of June and July, the arrival of tourists in Baglung decreased sharply, while the owners and the staff of the homestays, too, are also busy with farming.
Recently, homestay programs have been very effective in Baglung's villages with potential for tourism. Due to the decrease in the arrival of tourists since the onset of the rainy season, the problems in rural roads, and the increase in the incidence of floods and landslides, only a few tourists have been staying in the houses. The homestay programs, which were delayed for two years due to the COVID-19, have been doing well after the pandemic. However, after the start of the rainy season, the residences for homestays have been deserted.
Not only the homestays, but other tourist places and hotel businesses in the districts have also been deserted. Famous homestays in the district such as Atithi Satkar Homestay in Bhakunde, Kikalta Homestay in Tarakhola, Beldhunga homestay in the Kathekhola Rural Municipality, are also deserted after the beginning of the rainy season.
Apsara Thapa, the owner of Atithi Satkar Homestay in Bhakunde, says that the number of tourists visiting the homestay will increase only after September.
“There are a few guests here and there, but the road condition is poor after it’s raining, due to which even walking on the roads has been difficult. There are more tourists coming to our homestays during March-April, and October-November,” said Thapa. “During the rainy season, even the owners of homestays are in the fields, planting millet. Because it is not possible to observe the scenery during the rainy season, very few visitors come to Bhakunde in this season,” the owner added.
Gopal Srish, the owner of Beldhunga Community Homestay located in Kathekhola Rural Municipality-3, Dhamja of Baglung, said that the homestays had begun preparing for the Dashain-Tihar season.
“Only organic products are fed in the homestays. Now works such as storing the potatoes are going on,” Shrish said, “To feed the guests coming in the season of Dashain-Tihar, we have been collecting and storing organic produce from today. Now local goats and chickens are also being prepared,” he added. Shrish emphasized the organic produce to be served to the guests and said that the farmers here are stocking hemp seeds and potatoes. Among the 28 community homestays in the district, most of the guests have so far reached a dozen homestays.
The district, a geographical wonder in itself, is gifted with lakes, waterfalls and views which have been helping the owners of such homestays to make good earnings. However, now half a dozen homestays opened around Dhorpatan Village have stopped their operations.