Thank you for being connected with Bardia Homestay. We hope you and your relatives are in good health and that you are still dreaming about Bardia National Park. The end of the year 2021 is almost here. Time to look back and tell you more about the situation in Bardia National Park and Nepal. Did you know Nepal has been open for fully vaccinated travelers since the 24th of September? And that you do not have to quarantine? We also look forward to the year 2022. The year of the tiger!
Spring had a hopeful start. Normal life in Nepal had started again after the 1st corona wave and we welcomed local and ex-pat tourists. Budhi went trekking with a Brazilian guest in Khaptad National Park and we received e-mails from future foreign travellers. A tentative recovery was in sight.
But the delta variant of the coronavirus hit Nepal and us hard from the end of April. Local and international air traffic and public transport came to a standstill. Schools were closed. The virus infected daily almost 9000 people. Overcrowded hospitals, insufficient ICU beds and insufficient oxygen resulted in distressing situations. Sonja and Budhi’s mother were also affected by the virus and thankfully recovered after being hospitalized. We were so grateful that a temporary COVID-19 hospital was set up in our municipality, where skilled staff, oxygen and medicines were available. With the financial support of foreign friends, we donated rice, vegetables, fruit and eggs to the hospitalized patients.
Nepal has been slowly reopened since July. International and domestic flights have resumed. From the beginning of August, all employees working in tourism in Bardia got vaccinated. The daily number of patients has decreased in the last 2 months in Nepal. On average 250 new infections every day. The full vaccination rate is now around 31% (9.3 million people) and many people over 18 have received their 1st vaccination.
At the beginning of April, there was good news about the rhino population in Nepal. The population increased from 645 to 752 within 6 years. In Bardia National Park 38 rhinos were counted, 9 more than in 2015! After a lockdown of 4 months, the park has been open again since mid-September. If you go on safari, there is a good chance that you will spot one of the 38 rhinoceroses. Last summer, we were very excited so see endangered Gangetic river dolphins playing around our boat during a family rafting trip. They seem to make a comeback too!
Since September 24, travel to Nepal is possible with a visa on arrival and without quarantine for fully vaccinated travellers. We noticed that. From mid-October until now, we received weekly foreign guests from the Netherlands, Germany, Switzerland, Sweden, France and the USA! People who have been in Nepal before and people who visited Nepal for the first time.
More information about the travel regulations to Nepal can be found on our website and on the website of the department of immigration of the government of Nepal. Rules for travelling back from Nepal to your own country differ per country. Usually, you need a negative PCR test. In Kathmandu, there are several test locations where you can have an internationally approved PCR test done. The results are usually provided between 4 and 12 hours.
Since June 2020 we offer virtual walking tours, wildlife classes and cooking classes to travellers who want to learn more about the nature and culture of Nepal. It allows our guides to stay connected and share their knowledge with foreigners. And to generate income for themselves and their families. Also interested to visit us from the comfort of your home? Check our virtual tours!
In 2010 thirteen tiger range countries agreed to double the tiger population and to protect their natural habitat. Nepal is a forerunner in this and has taken many actions to improve the habitat of the tiger. As a result, the population has gone up from 121 in 2010 to 235 in 2018 with no less than 87 living in Bardia National Park. The new count started at the beginning of December 2021 and will last a couple of months. We are very curious about the results.
We hope that in 2022 carefree travelling to Nepal will remain possible and that more vaccines will become available for Nepal. Maybe time for you or your friends not only to dream about spotting tigers in Bardia National Park, but also actually encounter them (maybe again). Do you have the courage to face the tiger in the eye? But also the patience to wait for him? Then the year of the Water Tiger that starts on the 1st of February 2022 can bring you good luck!
Let the anticipation for your tiger trip begin under the Christmas Tree!
*In our blog, you can read more about the best 10 tips to make the most of your visit to Bardia National Park.
*Sign up for our our webinar ‘Encounter with the Tiger’ and learn more about the king of Bardia National Park.
*Read the book ‘ Bones of the tiger’ written by Hemanta Mishra about tiger conservation in Nepal.
A year of hope and gratitude. Sometimes life was rough and sometimes happy. But with every up and down we learned lessons that made us stronger. We wish you a merry christmas to be grateful for and a happy tiger year 2022!
Bardia Homestay Nepal
Budhi, Sonja and family Darlami
Manmohan, Balkrishna, Jayram, Ragubhir and Ramoti