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Nepal

Nepal is blessed with an incredible diversity of natural beauty and a consequent opulence of cultural varieties. The most exhilarating titles with which Nepal has been admired and praised by various renowned travel writers in recognition of her cultural richness, viz., Living Cultural Museum, Shangri-La, Roof of the World, Birth Place of the Apostle of Peace, Country of Living Goddess, City of Golden Pagodas and Parasols, Nature Amphitheatre, Melting Pot of Hinduism and Buddhism, Land of Mysticism and Exoticism, Land of non-stop Festivals et cetera are explicit and self-explanatory. They tell the world about Nepal’s incomparable and prosperous cultural heritage.

Hinduism followed by Buddhism, constitute two major religions of Nepal. Both these co-religionists are bound together by a sense of fellow feeling and bonhomie particularly displayed in their worship of common deities and joint celebration of many festivals belonging to either religion or culture. Kumari, the Virgin Hindu Goddess, for instance, is selected from a Buddhist clan and worshipped by Hindus. Nepal is a secular country and all religious faiths now receive equal treatment and protection from the State.

The exquisite architecture and artistic embellishment of the Nepalese pagodas that enshrine the bronze and stone images of great beauty and, more often than not, treat antiquity, is a unique feature of Nepal.

The temples and stupas are rich repositories of woodcarving, metal work, terracotta and stone sculpture. In their uniqueness they add glory and grandeur to the cultural scene of the Kingdom and tell a long history of native genius.

Nepal is undoubtedly one of the few countries having rich cultural heritage endowed with age-old historical monuments. Having ten world heritage sites in the country and among them 7 sites within 20 kilometers radius itself is something that we should be proud of. It has eight national parks, four wildlife reserves, three conservation areas and one hunting reserve with 2% of all the flowering plants in the world; 8% of the world’s population of birds (more than 848 species); 4% of mammals on earth; 11 of the world's 15 families of butterflies (more than 500 species); 600 indigenous plant families; and 319 species of exotic orchids.