Foreigners are required to obtain a permit to trek in Nepal Himalaya, and it is called trekking permit. Trekking permits are different for each area. There are also certain region which is basically known as restricted areas or controlled areas due to its typical culture, tradition and antique archaeological heritage. So it is highly regulated by government. Therefore, free individual trekkers are not allowed to trek in these areas. If anyone want to trek in these areas, s/he must have acquired special area permit from the department of immigration. However, trekkers should be in a group, it means there must be at least 2 person to trek in restricted areas. They should contact authorized trekking agencies who then can apply for permits to visit in these areas on behalf of trekkers at the department of immigration fulfilling all the necessary formalities.
Note: Individual trekker cannot get special permit.
How and where to get the permit ?
Nepal Tourism Board provides permits and TIMS(Trekkers’ Information Management System) card and it is located at Pradarshani Marg, Kathmandu. However, if you choose us to make your trip plan, then we do it for you. In order to get the trekking permit, you must have valid visa for sufficient number of days. It is not issued beyond visa expiration date.
Conditions to be applied for trekkers by Ministry of Home Affairs
- Trekkers must respect local customs and traditions. They are prohibited to indulge activity against local norms and values.
- Individual trekking is restricted in restricted areas.
- Trekkers are not allowed to trek off the beaten path avoiding specified trekking permit. They have to follow specified trekking route.
- Trekkers must obey instructions given by authorized officials in trekking zone.
TIMS stands for Trekkers’ Information Management System. TIMS card must be obtained to go any trekking areas. This is only to keep record of proper information of trekkers in order to ensure their safety and security. In case of some kind of accident and natural calamities, it helps to search and rescue lost trekkers. It must be obtained before the trek begins. Independent trekkers also can obtained it from offices of Nepal Tourism Board in Kathmandu or Pokhara.
Documents needed to obtain TIMS Card:-
- A copy of passport
- Two passport size photos
Special area permits must be acquired to visit most of the areas except Everest, Langtang and Helambu, and Annapurna. This must be obtained before the trek begins and it can be gotten from department of immigration. It only can be obtained through an authorized trekking agency. Trekkers are not allowed to go trekking without a guide in restricted areas. Special trekking permit fees vary for different areas.
National Park and Conservation Area Permit
Many trekking routes go through national park and conservation areas that is why trekkers need to pay national park entry fees.
National Parks and Conservation Areas which come midst of trekking routes:-
- Sagarmatha National Park
- Kanchenjunga Conservation Areas
- Makalu Barun National Park
- Shivapuri National Park
- Langtang National Park
- Khaptad National Park
- Rara National Park
- Shey Phoksundo National Park
Peak Climbing and Mountaineering Permit
Peak Climbing and Mountaineering permits are not allowed to get individual. It needs to be arranged through an authorized trekking and climbing agency.
Only NMA(Nepal Mountaineering Association) is allowed to issue climbing and mountaineering permit. But they are only authorized to issue permit for 33 peaks. Climbing permits for other peaks are obtained from Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation (MoCTCA).
Filming and Documentary Shooting Permit
A special permit is needed for filming and making documentary at trekking destinations, inside national parks and conservation areas. You must apply it through a trekking agency. This permit is also obtained through ministry of culture, tourism and civil aviation.