POKHARA: Paragliding has become a great attraction for both domestic and foreign tourists in recent times in Nepal.
Most of the tourists coming to view the mountains come to Nepal for paragliding, Flying Buddha Paragliding Pvt Ltd, Pokhara’s proprietor, Taranath Pahari said.
Although Nepal has become an attractive destination for paragliding, there are not a lot of pilots, Pahari added. “There are around 62 companies that run paragliding in Pokhara,” he said, adding, “Each company can keep six pilots, but there are only 180 Nepali and seven to eight foreign pilots.”
The prime season for paragliding in Pokhara is the month of October and November, but in recent times paragliding is operational throughout the year. With the start of paragliding in Nepal, Babu Adventure School and Blue Sky Flying School have gained permission for preparing the number of necessary pilots.
The Babu Adventure runs a school in Swarek of Syangja while Blue Sky has started preparing pilots in Bandipur of Tanahun. Sanu Babu Sunuwar, who has achieved a world feat by paragliding from high Himalayan peaks including Mt Everest, is the proprietor of the school in Syangja and trains Nepali and foreign aspirants.
Sunuwar said the classes started running from this year in Swarek to prepare paragliding pilots. The training given under government surveillance will give an official status for the pilots receiving training from the school.
Sunuwar said the youths are increasingly attracted towards becoming paragliders. It takes around two and a half years to qualify as a pilot in the business. The aspirants of 14 years of age to 58 years age have come to train as paragliders. RSS