We’re sure you might not know all these bits of trivia about the fascinating country of Nepal, a truly unique travel destination which is fortunately now recovering from the devastating earthquake in April.
Here are our “top 12” fun facts about Nepal:
- The Nepal flag is the only national flag that is not quadrilateral in shape. It is made of two triangles. The triangles are said to represent Hinduism and Buddhism. They also represent the Himalayan Mountains.
- The abominable snowman, also known as the yeti, is a legendary apelike creature that is believed to frequent the high valleys of Nepal.
- Namaste is the standard greeting in Nepal. It can mean Hello, Good Bye, Thank You but translates to “I salute the God in you.” People put their palms together and then bow their forehead, and say “Namaste.”
- Nepali time is 45 minutes off of the Coordinated Universal Time. The time in Nepal is based off of Mt Everest, and not the time zone lines.
- Hinduism and Buddhism are the two main religions.
- Cows are sacred in the Hindu religion and cannot be killed. Once a cow stops providing milk they are often released and the community is responsible for feeding her. Cows roam all over Nepal, even in the busy city of Kathmandu. Many people have water buffalo for milk, manure and meat.
- Since cows are sacred, so is their manure. It is common practice to clean the home with water and cow manure, to clean and bless it at the same time.
- Nepali is the chief or official language. There are many ethnic groups in Nepal and they speak hundreds of different languages. Not accents, but languages. Sometimes Nepali people can’t communicate as they speak different languages.
- Marijuana plants grow in gardens, on the side of the road, in ditches, on mountainsides, pretty much everywhere in Nepal. It’s…well, a weed.
- It is the year 2072 in Nepal. They celebrate the new year on April 13th.
- Nepal has the only living goddess in the world, the Kumari. Kumari means virgin in Nepali and is the tradition of worshiping young pre-pubescent girls as manifestations of the divine female energy in Hindu religious traditions.
- About 90% of marriages in Nepal are arranged and the bride and groom will usually not meet or see each other before the wedding day. Although, ‘love’ marriages (choosing your own partner) are becoming slightly more popular.
- Most of the power in Nepal comes from hydro-power, but it is not very reliable.