Culture, Conduct & Consideration: Nepal has always been a dividing line between cultures and civilizations, and cross-roads for the commerce and culture. Here the plains of the subcontinent climb up to the high plateau of Tibet, the languages and people of India give way to those of China and the Hindu religion blends in to Buddhism. Nepal is often a complex blend of the two influences and this variation is further complicated by the diversity of ethnic groups within the country.

The challenge for you as a visitor to Nepal is the respect the rights and beliefs of the local people, and to minimize your impact - culturally and environmentally. Remember Nepali is not an adventure park or museum established for your convenience, but home to a vital, changing culture. Life for many is extremely hard, but despite the scarcity of material possessions, there are many qualities that shame the so-called developed world. Your very presence in Nepal will have an effect - an increasing number of people say a negative one. In a totally different culture it is also inevitable that the visitor will make some gaffe at some point. Most Nepalese make allowances, but they do appreciate it when a genuine effort is made to observe local customs. Following is a miscellaneous collection of simple suggestions that will help avoid offense.

Always remove your shoes before entering a Nepali home. Dress appropriately - shorts or revealing clothing are never suitable for women. Shorts are acceptable for men only when trekking; going without a shirt anywhere is not. Nudity is not acceptable anywhere.