14 Interesting Facts About Nepal

1. Map of Nepal and Portugal is similar

Nepal and Portugal are alike in the world Map. They both have similar rectangular territory. If the map of Nepal is turned 90 degrees clockwise, it looks very similar to the map of Portugal.

2. Unique Nepali Calendar

The Nepali calendar called Bikram Sambhat is approximately 67 years and 8.5 months ahead of Gregorian calendar. The Nepali New Year is celebrated in mid-April.

3. Slaughtering cows is illegal

As a national animal of the country, slaughtering of cows is illegal in Nepal. Although, you can enjoy beef at different restaurants and eateries. It is not uncommon to see cows wandering around the streets of Kathmandu.

4. Nepal – Amazon of Asia

In terms of biodiversity, Nepal is one of the richest countries in the world. It is rightfully called Amazon of Asia as it is a home for the variety of unique species of Flora and Fauna.  Nepal has more than 900 species of birds, which accounts to 8.9% of the total species of birds all around the world. It has 4.2 % of the world’s butterfly species and 3.96 percent of the world’s mammal species.

5. Kathmandu – Living Cultural Museum

Durbar Squares in Kathmandu

Nepal is culturally rich country. There are dozens of World Heritage Sites categorized as Natural and Cultural World Heritage Sites.  Kathmandu valley alone has seven UNESCO’s World Heritage Cultural sites within a radius of 15 kilometers. No wonder! Kathmandu is known to be the living cultural museum of the world.

6. Mt. Everest

Nepal has 8 out of 10 of the world’s highest mountains, including the world’s highest Mount Everest standing 8,848 meters high. Mount Everest is called Sagarmatha in Nepali and Chomolungma by the local Sherpas and Tibetans.  Thousands of trekkers visit to Everest Base Camp and hike to Kala Patthar to catch a glimpse of Mt. Everest closely.

7. Birthplace of Lord Buddha

Nepal is the birthplace of the Light of Asia-  Buddha. Siddhartha Gautam (Buddha) was born in 623 B.C. in Kapilvastu, Lumbini, which lies in Nepal. Lumbini is now a sacred place of pilgrimage for Buddhists all over the world.  There are different relics around Maya Devi Temple which dates back to the time during Buddha’s birth. 

8. Triangular Flag

Nepal is the only country in the world with a non-rectangular flag. Nepal’s flag is maroon colored with two triangular shapes stacked on one another with dark blue border. The upper triangle consists of moon and the lower triangle consists of the sun.  The current flag has been in place since 1962, although the basic design has been used for over 2,000 years in Nepal.

9. Independent Nation

The famous warriors in the world “Gurkhas” are from Nepal. Having been protected by the bravest warriors of the world, Nepal does not have an independent day as it was never colonized by any superpowers of the world.

10. Living Goddess – Kumari

Nepal has the only living Goddess in the world called Kumari. Kumari literally means virgin in Nepali. There are three different Kumari in three main cities of Kathmandu valley.

11. Last Hindu Country

Nepal was the last Hindu Country in the world when it was declared secular by the parliament in the year 2006. Although many religions harmoniously co-exist in the country, 81.3 percent of the population in the country follows Hinduism.

Nepal still has the highest proportion of Hindus in the world.

12. Namaste – I salute the God in you

Handshakes are quite uncommon in Nepal. People of Nepal put their palms together and bow their forehead and say Namaste or Tashidele (in the Sherpa Communities). Namaste is directly translated as ‘I salute the God in you’.

13. Yeti Resides in Nepal

The mysterious creature of the Himalayas called Yeti is said to be spotted in the Nepalese Himalayas by many who have trodden the secluded path in the Himalayas. Sir Edmund Hillary even led an expedition to find the Yeti in 1958.

14. Altitude Variation

Nepal is the only country with altitudinal variation that ranges from 59 meters to 8848 meters. Nepal holds some of the most extreme places on the earth such as the highest lake on the earth (Tilicho 4800 meters), the highest valley on earth (Arun valley), the deepest gorges (1200 meter) in Kaligandaki and the tallest grassland in the world in Chitwan.