Himalayan News Service

Kathmandu, January 28

Shree Jagad Guru Shankaracharya of Kaanchi launched Pashupatinath darshan package in Chennai to commemorate Mahashivaratri.

Nepal Tourism Board (NTB) said in a press release that Shankaracharya highlighted Nepal as a tapobhumi where Lord Shiva resides and Lord Pashupatinath is even above 12 jyotirlingas. He emphasised the socio-cultural and religious ties between Nepal and India.

He was speaking at a media gathering organised by NTB with the support of the Royal Nepal Airlines and Pashupati Area Development Trust. Pointing out that Nepal is the "only Hindu Kingdom in the world", Shankaracharya said that all Hindus must visit Pashupatinath at least once in their life.

"The promotion package received a wide media coverage and publicity which is expected to boost Nepal as a pilgrimage destination," stated the release pointing out that press meets are slated to be held in Bangalore and Delhi soon.

Similarly, Tek Bahadur Dangi, chief executive officer of NTB spoke about special pilgrimage destinations and other attractions of Nepal. He promoted Nepal as a famous destination for shopping and other activities such as mountain flights, jungle safari, white water rafting among others.

The package costs INR 9,999 per person including return tickets and a special guided tour of the Pashupatinath area. The same offer from Delhi costs INR 7,777 per person and multiple choices of accommodations and tour packages are available at extra costs. The package is valid from February 15-March 31 and other destinations can be arranged at an additional cost.

The success of the launching of Pashupati Darshan package in India last year prompted NTB to launch a similar package this year. About one-third of tourists in Nepal are Indians. There was a 33 per cent (87,066 visitors) growth of Indian tourists last year compared to the previous year, according to NTB.