LONDON: The Embassy of Nepal in London, Nepal Ireland Society, Nepal Tourism Board, and NRNA Ireland jointly organized ‘Nepal Ireland Day’ on September 9 2018, to promote “Experience Nepal – Cuisine and Culture” campaign and celebrate the 19th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Nepal and Ireland. The event was a huge success with more than 8,000 visitors.

Nepal Tourism Board (NTB), a government-authorized board for tourism activities in Nepal, has launched its global campaign named ‘Experience Nepal – Cuisine and Culture’ (ENCC) to promote Nepal’s tourism. The campaign targets to especially focus on internationalizing Nepalese food.

The event comprised of Nepalese cultural programs, Nepal photo exhibition with photographs taken by Irish tourists, Nepalese Handicraft Stall, stalls of Irish NGOs who work in Nepal, Nepalese ethnic fashion show, Nepal mountaineering talk program by Irish Mountaineers and felicitation of Irish Mountaineers who have scaled the top 10 highest mountains in Nepal.

Nepal Ireland Day is the biggest Nepalese event in Ireland that commemorates the ever growing friendship and links between Nepal and Ireland.

Speaking at the opening ceremony, the convener of Ireland Nepal Parliamentary Friendship group and member of Irish Parliament Maureen O’Sullivan said she is delighted to be a part of the celebration and reassured that the parliamentary friendship group will be putting every effort to strengthen relations between Nepal and Ireland and also increase collaboration between the two countries in trade, investment, technology and other areas.

Nepal’s former Minister for Tourism, Culture and Civil aviation Kripasur Sherpa, who came from Nepal to attend the event, expressed his excitement to see such a mega Nepalese event being organized in Ireland. He said there is an opportunity for Ireland and Nepal to collaborate specially in tourism sector to tap the economic benefit of the tourism industry. Former Minister Sherpa felicitated Irish Mt. Everest Summiteers Dawson Stelfox, Noel Hanna, Rob Mortell and Derek Mahon by offering Nepalese Bhaad-Gaaule Topi (Nepali Hat) and a Khada.

The guest of honor Fingal County Council Mayor Cllr Anthony Lavin and Second Secretary at Embassy of Nepal London Lawa Subedi also addressed the opening ceremony. Also present at the opening ceremony was Military Attache at Embassy of Nepal, London Colonel Kumar Babu Thapa Chettri.

President of Nepal Ireland Society and the chief coordinator of Nepal Tourism Board’s Experience Nepal – Cuisine and Culture campaign- Deepesh Man Shakya welcomed the guests and introduced the executive committee members of both Nepal Ireland Society and NRNA-NCC Ireland by calling them on the stage. Shakya also handed over invitation to visit Nepal from the Speaker of Nepal’s House of Parliament Krishna Bahadur Mahara to the Speaker of Irish Parliament Seán Ó Fearghaíl, to the convener of Ireland Nepal Parliamentary Friendship group Maureen O’Sullivan.

The mountaineering talk program was attended by Irish trekking and climbing enthusiasts. Dawson Stelfox, Noel Hanna, Mr. Seamus Lawless, Jenny Copeland and Daithí Ó Murchú shared their mountaineering experience in Nepal.

One of the highlights of the event was the Nepalese Ethnic Fashion Show. Nepalese artists residing in Ireland showcased Nepal’s cultural dresses as the host of the event Alison Irwin read out a brief description for each ethnicity. A myriad of talented Nepalese artists performed at the cultural program. A ground full of local people had their eyes glued to the stage throughout the day.

President of NRNA-NCC Ireland Nabaraj Koirala and Chief Public Relations Office and Vice President and Nepal Ireland Society Jivan Timalsina gave a vote of thanks on behalf of NRNA-NCC Ireland and Nepal Ireland Society respectively.

The Experience Nepal campaign will serve as a preparation for the Nepal government announced year 2020 as Visit Nepal year where the target is to bring two million tourists to Nepal in 2020.

Nepal Ireland Society has been organizing Nepal Ireland Day since 2013 with support from Office of Public Works (OPW), Ireland.