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Friday, February 22, 2013
Mustang sees rise of tourists
More than 37,000 tourists visited Mustang in 2012, a sharp increment compared to the same period of last year.
"Although the country´s tourism sector did not perform well in 2012, this area received good number of tourists," Santosh Sherchan, Mustang chief of the Annapurna Conservation Area Project is quoted as saying by local newspapers.
With these, Mustang-based entrepreneurs are hopeful of the number going up further this year as Mustang has been identified as one of the must-visit destinations of 2013 by international travel guide book Lonely Planet. Tourists can reach Mustang via air, Beni-Jomsom road and Annapurna trekking route.
"People who trek to Mustang spend more days in the district than those coming via air," Sherchan said. Likewise, 30,000 tourists visited Ghorepani of Myagdi last year, as against 23,000 in 2011
Foreign visitors have been allowed to the region since 1992, but tourism to Upper Mustang is regulated. Foreigners need to obtain a special permit to enter.
Most tourists travel by foot over largely the same trade route used in the 15th century. October and August are the peak visiting months.