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Tourism Concern in consultation with British and Nepalese tour operators and Nepalese NGOs drew up this code. It is designed for trekkers in the Himalayas, but the principles apply to other high mountain environments, such as the Andes.

  • Protect the natural environment
  • Limit deforestation. Make no open fires and discourage others from doing so on your behalf. Where water is heated by scarce firewood, use as little as possible. When possible, choose accommodation that uses kerosene or fuel-efficient wood stoves.
  • Remove litter. Burn or bury paper and carry out all non-degradable litter.
  • Graffiti is a permanent form of environmental pollution.
  • Keep local water clean. Avoid using pollutants such as detergents in streams or springs.
  • If no toilet facilities are available, make sure you are alt least 30 meters away from water sources, and bury or cover wastes.
  • Plants should be left to flourish in their natural environment. Taking cuttings, seeds and roots is illegal in many parts of the Himalayas.
  • Help your guides and porters to follow conservation measures.
  • As a guest, respect local traditions and cultures, and maintain local pride. When taking photographs, respect privacy. Ask permission and use restraint.
  • Respect holy places. Preserve what you have come to see. Never touch or remove religious objects. Shoes should be removed when visiting temples.
  • Giving to children encourages begging. A donation to a project, health centre or school is a more constructive way to help.
  • You will be accepted and welcomed if you follow local customs.
  • Use only your right hand for eating and greeting.
  • Do not share cutlery and cups, etc.
  • It is polite to use both hands when giving and receiving gifts.
  • Respect local etiquette. Loose, lightweight clothes are preferable to revealing shorts, skimpy tops and tight fitting "action-wear". Hand holding or kissing in public is disliked by local people.
  • Observe standard food and bed charges but do not condone overcharging. Remember, when you're shopping, that the bargains you buy may only be possible because of low income to others.
  • Visitors who value local traditions encourage local pride and maintain local cultures.

Please help local people gain a realistic view of life in Urban Cities.


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