Nepal Earthquakes 2015-Tourism Tanks

Nepal faced some of it’s most challenging days following the earthquakes of 2015. When I arrived on May 12 another earthquake measuring 7.3 had just shook the country this time killing 153 people, injuring over 3,000 and sending fear and panic throughout the rest of the population, many forced outside due to damage or the loss of their home. Some opting to sleep outdoors fearing more earthquakes and the collapse of their house.

The tourism business was in a shambles, with the fear of more earthquakes and the international media coverage tourists just stopped coming. The foreign volunteers in Nepal for disaster relief far out numbered the few travellers that didn’t cancel their plans. 

In the meantime 90% of the hotels operating in Nepal were damage free. Nevertheless most people in the tourism business had already written off the current season and were more concerned about how the disaster and media coverage would affect the fall season, the busiest and most lucrative time of the year. 

During my stay I spent many days walking the streets of Kathmandu, capturing images  and speaking with people about how the earthquakes had affected their lives. 

One late afternoon on May 21st I walked to Durbar Square, even after the destruction with many temples and shrines in ruins it remained  the social center of the city.  I found a local organization promoting a positive future campaign focused on youth that had attracted a crowd with their vigil like display of candles and flowers in the shape of Nepal fixed on the ground. A show of unity and support. 

Here is the audio portion of my encounter with the group and the interview from a previous Periscope live stream with one of their representatives. The message is heartfelt, the tone mirrored the feelings of many in the tourism community.   






About the Author John Saboe

I am a broadcaster, photographer, writer and videographer with a passion for travel throughout Asia. I love making connections and engaging with people. I am spiritual and seek adventure wherever I go.

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