KATHMANDU, Nov 5: The arrival of foreign tourists in Nepal has gradually caught the track. In the past 10 months, around 500,000 foreign tourists visited Nepal, according to data with the Nepal Tourism Board (NTB). This is a huge increase as compared to the figure in 2020 and 2021 when the pandemic was at its peak. The COVID-19 pandemic had ruined the tourism sector.
The country recorded the arrival of slightly over 230,000 tourists in 2020, a sharp drop by a whopping 81 percent against over 1.19 million tourists in 2019 just before the infection. Similarly, in 2021, the number of foreign tourist arrivals further dropped by 34.4 percent to slightly over 150,000 as compared to 2020.
The influx of tourists in 2022 was seen between January and October, according to the NTB. Over 88,500 tourists visited the country in October alone, and over 61,500 in April, over 58,300 in September, more than 41,300 in August, over 44,400 in July, and more than 46,900 in June.
Similarly, over 53,600 visited the country in May, more than 42,000 in March, over 19,700 in February and more than 16,900 in January.
Around 70 to 75 percent recovery from the figure of foreign tourist arrivals since 2019 was expected, and the situation is well on track, said the NTB Director Maniraj Lamichhane. More than 600,000 tourists are expected to visit Nepal this year if the arrival rate goes this way, he added.