Is Nepal safe for solo female travellers?
Many of the countries in south Asia, solo female travellers does not feel much comfortable. Among the south Asian countries Nepal seems more liberal in case of solo females visiting this wonderland or discovering the country on their own. In this article we want to throw the light and want to discuss about the possible problems, obstacles, and precautions and measures a solo female travellers need to consider while visiting Nepal as a tourist. The article is beneficial for solo females who want to travel Nepal on your own or travel alone. The article is based on the experience we have got operating the trips to solo females, their stories and problems they face during the trip and some of the trip we have just recommended to do on their own and the news that came about missing or died travellers in the country.
Let us start with few important serious cases solo females encountered in Nepal. A Japanese young lady has gone for a trekking in Langtang area who loves to take pictures. One day she came out from her lodge and gone to wander on her own and to take some pictures. She lost the way back the hotel and in search of hotel and way to hotel she has gone deeper in the forest and get lost. With the initiation from the hotel owner, where she left her belongings they have found her after five days of her disappearance living in a small cave, eaten the shoots of Nigalo (a small bushy bamboo), bit by bugs, hungry and very scared and seems not slept at all.
A Russian lady who has gone trekking in Ghandruk area alone tried to cross the local flooded stream of the area which does not seem that big. As the streams are flowing with very high gradient, the power of the water take everything on their way so the lady fell down, slipped away and flowed down with the water. Later she was rescued and brought down but she died.
An Australian girl has seen a beautiful natural pool of water just above Birethanti on the trail to Ulleri. She got tempted and gone swimming there, drowned and died.
These are the representative examples that one need to be cautious while travelling alone. It is always better safe than sorry. There is nothing wrong in being cautious.
The problem faced by solo female travellers in Nepal
Minor Sexual assault and flirting
When they see solo female travellers there are certain people who try to flirt and even minor sexual assault like they like to touch, kiss or some unusual behavior. So most of the cases the girl factor plays a great role, people look other way and they sneak for the special access. Groping on the buses and verbal abuse might be happened while travelling. Every country and society there are good peoples as well as bad peoples. There is no comparison of all the eggs by encountering one rotten egg. Some people they see western females as more liberal regarding sexual matters than our orthodox patriarchal society. The perception is different with the society they have been grown up and how and where they got educated.
When solo female travellers invite man in their room or home, the click on the man’s mind is she might have invited him to have intimate relationships. If you do not want romantic involvement with someone make sure you don’t meet someone in private. Meet them in a public area, which is comfortable for everybody involved.
The curiosity in the village
Most of the village people in Nepal are thin, when they see westerners; they think they came from the other planet. These village people like to touch the skins, like to ask what they eat, how old are they, what type of job they do, how much does their watch cost etc. As western girls are not exposed to these types of scenarios they feel uncomfortable. The situation is worse when you go to non-frequent destination.
Access and abuse by other foreigners
Not only locals create you the troubles but other fellow travellers of opposite sex seems to be friendly at the beginning to solo female travellers and wants end up with some intimate relationships. We have encountered some people they book our group joining trips just to search a partner during the trek. Take great care while choosing your companion.
Hard to get pictured
It is not a long time a selfy stick appeared. When solo travellers like to take picture at their desired location especially during the trek, there might be nobody so one has to sacrifice to be photographed in the desired place many times.
Unwanted touch during the color festival “Holi”
End of winter and beginning of the spring is celebrated by throwing different colors among each other. During these “holi” festival, a group of youths seems everywhere putting colors to everyone including foreigners they meet on the way. The colors supposed to be thrown more to the opposite sex. They have to put color on your face but they even try to touch the private parts.
Hard to get rooms in higher elevation
There are limited rooms in the higher elevation trek like Annapurna Base camp, Everest Base camp, Everest three passes and for solo travellers it is hard to get single rooms. This will not create much trouble for males but is different for solo females.
Robberies and pickpocketing
Although robbery and pickpocketing is not that common in Nepal but solo travellers are often victimized and robbed specially females. Solo females are the targets for the pickpocketers as they believe they will easily escape.
To overcome all the major issues solo female travellers need to consider the following measures while travelling in Nepal.
- Be cautious.
- Hire a guide.
- Dress appropriately.
- As every country the dress code is different, while travelling in Nepal use dresses that cover your knees and shoulders.
- Do not go out during the night time.
- Travel with reliable company.
- Leave your tentative itinerary to your nearest relative back home and talk to them frequently about what you are going to do.
- Do not drink beer, smoke and do barhopping with suspicious people.
- Make friend to hotel staff.
- Show confidence on hard time.
Even there are problems to solo female travellers but in Nepalese society we honor females and solo female travellers are often gets more attention, sympathy and special treatment. Things are beneficial and detrimental. We promise 100% safety to solo female travellers and encourage asking us any itineraries good for you even if you are travelling alone. In general nepalese society consider guest as God and our guides are trained with that philosophy and they treat solo females on the most decent way as they treat to every other individual. Himalayan Travel Consultant team is privileged to announce that we can provide female guides to solo female travelers if you wish to travel only with female guides. Our female guides assure our solo female clients happiness and safety. Keep reading our other blogs for latest updates and help other solo travellers by sharing the information. The share buttons are located on top right corner.