Friday, August 27, 2010

NETIF Constructions Along the KVCTT


1.       Sundarijal – Lovely waterfall views and great picnic spot.

2.       Above Mulkharka Village – Encompassing views of Kathmandu Valley and beyond.

3.       Borlyang Bhanjyang – Impressive Himalaya views including Machapucchure and Annapurna as well as the Trisuli River and Likhu Khola(River).

4.       Thulo Dhap (Big Wet Lands) – Peaceful view of the Wetlands and snow capped mountains.

5.       Sano Dhap (Small Wet Lands) – Placed on the junction of Chisapani, Nagarkot, Sundarijal and Mulkharka route. Ideal rest places with village, valley, jungle and mountain views. Has a water tap facility.

6.       Between Sano Dhap and Jhule – Peaceful jungle location with snow capped mountain views, Melamchi Valley and River.

7.       Jhule – Located above the army check post and ticket counter. Himalaya and Valley views. Junction marker between Chisapani, Nagarkot and Sundarijal/Mulkharka.

8.       Kattike Bhanjyang – Before the last climb to Nagarkot. Nice village location with Valley and Mountain views.

9.       Rohini Bhanjyang – Located at the junction of Nala, Nagarkot and Dhulikhel in the community jungle. Good views of Panchkal Valley and beyond.

10.   Basuki Dhanda – Situated in between Nagarkot and Dhulikhel. Fantastic all round views of the Panchkal valley, Dhulikhel town and Himalayan panoramas.

11.   Dhulikhel Kali Temple – Located according to a mountain survey performed in 2000 by Sukna Sagmar and Mukunda Shrestha, this position commands the best views of the entire Himalaya from Annapurna all the way beyond Everest. This is the place where many Himalayan profiles are taken from.

12.   Phulbari/Namobuddha – Views of Panckhal Valley, local villages and Himalayan Panoramas.


A.      Mulkharka Village – community centre, women’s group and training centre.

B.      Nagarkot – Tourist information Centre, NNTDC (Nagarkot Naldum Tourism Development Committee) Office, Forestry Office and Local Guide Office.


(i)                  Located at the Shivapuri Nagarjun National Park entrance gate and ticket counter above Sundarijal.

(ii)                Located at Namobudda Monastery.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

The Kathmandu Valley Cultural Trekking Trail

NETIF has been developing the Kathmandu Valley Cultural Trekking Trail (KVCT) since the beginning of 2008. The trail starts from Sundarijal and passes through Shivapuri-Nagarjun National Park before ending in Panauti with possible overnight stops in Chisapani, Nagarkot, Dhulikhel and Namobuddha. The area covers 16 VDCs of Kathmandu, Bhaktapur and Kavre districts.

The main areas of action taken by NETIF along the Kathmandu Valley Cultural Trekking Trail are awareness raising and local Institutional development, small scale community infrastructure, local capacity development ,conservation and alternative energy, networking communication and alliance building, research and survey. Almost all the activities were directed towards mitigating the problems such as pollution, energy conservation, waste management, natural resource conservation, addressing the needs of communities as well as tourists.

NETIF has been addressing the issues of responsible tourism in following way’s -

Pollution and Waste Management
NETIF has already completed more than 10 awareness and cleanup campaigns throughout the project area. It has placed more than 300 waste bins, 8 incinerators and 4 garbage management centers with funding along the trail. Further, we have also trained villagers and advocated village waste management coordinators in areas where needed. Working with the Municipality of Dhulikhel, NETIF is developing a dialog with hotel managers, DDC’s and locals for a long term waste management project which includes rubbish bin placement and employment of gardeners and cleaners in the area.

Energy and Conservation
Green Energy is the way forward for a better environment. NETIF was played a part in the funding and installation of 35 fuel efficient stoves and a wind turbine in the project area. NETIF has also implemented extensive community training in organic farming and waste management. Last year, NETIF planted more than 5000 plants throughout the trail. In the near future we have plans to introduce high value crops and eco sound farming methods to aid villagers and also to establish green belts along the trail. To help manage deforestation by villagers, NETIF has also implemented a training program and support network for Briquette making as a renewable, sustainable source of energy for heating, cooking and also as a product for sale.

Community Involvement
The active involvement of local community members is essential to the success of NETIF’s projects. We encourage and support involvement of all community members throughout the project area. For example the Village Garbage Management Fund is managed by the local communities and even they have their partial contribution to it. In addition to it, local skills and expertise have been mobilized while constructing the infrastructure and in the mean time, local employment has been increasing through the transportation of construction materials to the trail. The local people's capacity has been enhanced through the trainings such as ‘Small Hotel and Lodge Management’, ‘Mushroom and off Seasonal Vegetable Cultivation’, ‘Local Guide Training’, ‘Folk Dance and Live Presentation’, ‘Corn Husk Training’ and ‘Basic Vegetable Farming’. NETIF’s training programs also target and include women and marginalized ethnic groups of the villages.

Natural Resource Conservation
NETIF's activities are also directed towards the conservation of natural resources. For example metal poles were used in the construction of incinerators and tourists shelters instead of wooden poles. The waste wood was reused to make signage and information boards that where placed along the trail. More than, 200 conservation of natural resources awareness boards were also placed along the trails. A simple map and guideline for tourist and locals has been developed and placed along the trail. In the future NETIF will make survey’s on visitor flow and carrying capacity of the trail and prepare a guideline for the operation of green hotels in the villages.

Addressing the needs of local people and the Tourists
For NETIF, local communities have always been the entry point for any activities in any geographical area. Their active participation and backup support from various stakeholders is necessary for the sustainability of the trail. Therefore NETIF has constructed 2 multipurpose community centers providing small tourism business development trainings such as vegetable farming, lodge management etc, to address the needs of local community. NETIF's activities have also addressed the needs of the trekkers traveling in the area. We have constructed 10 tourist shelters, 3 public toilet’s and 1 entrance gate. The trekking trail has been upgraded and marked, brochures, maps and hoarding boards have been published to address the needs of the tourists.

Health and Awareness
NETIF has been sensitive towards the health and awareness of visitors and host communities. It has developed brochures and information boards that create awareness among the tourists' health and security while utilizing the trekking trails. The brochures educate tourists what to do, what not to do, what to carry, what and where to eat and about the drinking water in the trails. Likewise, in the future we plan to promote volunteerism and internship programs in the health sector throughout communities touched by the trekking trail.

Our work through the trekking trail and project area is ongoing and in the future we plan to keep developing the trekking trail and extending to include other villages, in cooperate home stay and farm stay programs and also nature trails in Shivapuri - Nagarjun National Park.

Monday, August 9, 2010


On the 1st of August 2010, Nagarkot Naldum Tourism Development Committee (NNTDC) in conjunction with NETIF and Nepal Red Cross Bhaktapur arranged a one day blood donation program. The program was a huge success attended by locals, hoteliers and business men from Nagarkot, NETIF board members, local police, tourists and other visitors. In all around 110 people successfully donated blood which immensely helped boost dwindling local blood supplies in hospitals.

The location was next to the Nagarkot tourist information center and tea and refreshments where supplied for visitors and donors.  During the day there where also pony rides going on and all participants for donation received a certificate of gratitude. It was also a great opportunity for the NNTDC and NETIF to showcase Nagarkot as a splendid tourist destination. Although the weather was not clear, there was still good views of the monsoon green valley’s beyond. A huge thank you needs to go out to organizers of the day and especially to all those good hearted people who donated blood….THANKYOU and please come back and visit Nagarkot again.


In the chilly month of February, the team at NETIF decided to chase away the winter blues and do some serious promotion for tourism and the environment in Shivapuri - Nagarjun National Park and the villages of Chisapani and Mulkharka. NETIF’s aim was to promote the area as a local and international tourist destination, promote villages along the route, spread the word about the importance of our environment and also exercise and recreational possibilities right on the door step of Kathmandu.

Main Objectives
1. Promotion of “Together for Tourism 2011”.
2. Campaign for environment conservation and awareness.
3. Promotion of outdoor activities on the ‘Kathmandu Valley Cultural Trekking Trail’ (KVCTT).
4. Creating awareness about the importance of recreation in our daily lives.
5. Promotion of environmentally friendly tourism.

Preparing for the event
A lot of work went into getting things ready for the event, what, when, where and how is always the nuts and bolts of organising anything and the team at NETIF where flat out on this one. NETIF worked in conjunction with the village coordinators and committees at Mulkharka and Chisapani, Nepal National Parks, the Nepal Tourism Board, Nepal Cycling Association, Dawn til Dusk and Biking First to get the event together.
Issues we faced where the logistics of firstly getting 70 bikes to Chisapani. On a short reki trip we discovered that the truck-able road was very long and rugged indeed and a day trip to explore our options turned into a rather chilly overnight trip and stop in Chisapani. NETIF decided that we needed three tip trucks to get the bikes up and that it would take a full day. We also inspected the cycling route and where on the lookout for any danger places that needed marking out.

What to eat and where to stay was the next issue we faced. It was decided to take lunch in Mulkharka and the evening meal and breakfast was to be in Chisapani with the help and support of all lodge owners and a Chef, Suroj Ji from Shangrila Hotel. Trust us ordering food for 100+ people and getting it there in one piece was no mean feat. 

Promoting the event was the key to its success, so brochures where made and mailing lists and invitations sent out with an online registration form up and running thanks to the loads to
Though at times it seemed as if NETIF would never get there, as always a great effort by everyone and lots of hard work saw the event come together at the last moment.

The Big Event
Some 100+ people attended the event in total, a few more than we expected which posed some last minute accommodation headaches. The main group departed Kathmandu by bus from outside the Nepal Tourism Board and headed for the drive to Sundarijal where refreshments where had. From here we trekked up into Shivapuri – Nagarjun National Park via the entrance gate and army check post. The first point of interest along the trail where the tourist shelters and rubbish collection points and incinerators built by NETIF. The trekkers climb up for about an hour, past the water supply for Kathmandu Valley and Sundari Mai Temple to Mulkharka. At Mulkharka there was Dhal Bhart waiting for the hungry group. A presentation was made to the local village committee of donation boxes and environment sign boards.

The trail proceeded up through the National Park, the route was marked with environmental signboards and slogans to remind trekkers of the importance of our natural environment. Local guides helped the trekkers to indentify types of trees and shrubs, Nepal’s National Flower, the Rhododendron and species of birds. Sadly the weather was a little bit cloudy and there were not very good views of the Himalaya from Bhorlang Bhanjyang. Trekkers arrived in Chisapani around 4 o’clock to the local villagers offering rhododendron flowers and khata while traditionally dressed village men played long horns and trumpets....the party had already began.
Behind the scenes, the NETIF organization team where working hard to get everyone roomed and prepare the food as well as unloading and storing bikes that got a bit tussled around on the journey up. As darkness came we were treated to a traditional dance show, some great food and a welcome presentation from the NETIF president and the local community. After dinner the real party raged on well into the small hours of the morning with dancing and singing and much enjoyment taken by all.

The following morning, there were a few sore heads that heading down the road for a bike initiation and distribution, followed by breakfast. The villagers bid us a fond farewell as we headed out by bike down to the Dhaps, these beautiful wetlands are a suburb feature of the natural environment that abounds in Shivapuri Nagarjun National Park.

The biking route leaves the Dhaps and heads down along the beautiful Nagamati River, a very important water source for the Kathmandu Valley. The ride ended back in Shivapuri with a big catered lunch and it was a good time to relax with new friends and share our memories.
Will NETIF be doing it again? YES YES YES....Stay tuned for NETIF’S next promotional event.

Media Coverage
A huge media contingent turned out for the event and in fact where the life of the party, they hiked up with the group and biked down as well and enjoyed the event. Positive reports and reviews where published in various news papers, magazines and press release as well as coverage aired on TV and radio in the two weeks after the event. As a promotional event for local and international tourism, we consider it a great success.