Well, I started as a porter in 1997, as I could not find any other work. Someone sent me trekking as a porter and I continued with this work. After working as a porter for a year, I underwent training to be a tour guide. We had 45 days of guide training, having had trekking experience. I worked for about six years for other companies as a manager and it was a good opportunity for me to learn all the official work. After all these experiences I started my own company.
What does a typical day look like for you?
My day usually starts with a cup of coffee and checking my work email for the day. After my breakfast, I head towards my office and begin my work, which usually involves replying to inquiries and arranging activities requested by the clients.
I believe in the idea of simple living and I try really hard to make my relationships count and to surround myself with people who are not toxic in my life.
You act as a travel consultant for trekking companies – where do you think is the best place to trek in Nepal, and why?
I think the best place to trek in Nepal is Mount Everest because it is the world’s highest mountain and you’ll get to see a variety of scenery and other high mountains too. People in this area are very friendly, warm and welcoming. They treat their guests like their own family.
The best part of my job is that I get to meet new people every day and visit new places. Visiting different places helps me get to know about the culture, tradition, history and many other things about that area.
You are originally from the Gurkha District but now live in Kathmandu. What is the main difference between the two areas and which do you feel is more like ‘home’?
The main difference between these two areas is pollution. Gurkha is less polluted and people are more friendly and helpful than in comparison to Kathmandu. But Kathmandu is more like home to me because all my family are here and my business as well.
What must first time travellers to Nepal see or do and why? What activity should they take part in and why?
I think first time travellers to Nepal must see Pokhara as it is a most beautiful city surrounded with lakes, mountains, temples and caves. They should take part in homestays in Nepal as it is the simplest way to learn about the culture, tradition and way of living of Nepalese people.
I think the phrase for the first time travellers to learn in Nepalese is “Namaste”. It is a way of respectfully greeting people.
Have you got a certain style of guiding, or do you just run with it on the day?
I definitely don’t have any style of guiding. I just run with it on the day.
What’s the most interesting or exciting experience you’ve had on a tour?
The most interesting part was having the chance to visit all the areas, because to see or to visit part of Nepal, people come as a tourist, but I am working and visiting simultaneously.
Sometimes, even when I try my best to satisfy the clients, I cannot, perhaps because of the language barrier or misunderstandings.
As an experienced guide yourself, can you explain to our readers what the benefits of hiring a guide are?
The benefit of hiring a guide is that the guide is familiar with the place and knows almost everything about it. Not everyone travelling knows about the places they are going to visit and they may not know the path or trail they are supposed to go on.
In your view, what makes a good tour guide?
I think politeness and friendliness makes a good tour guide. Apart from that, a good tour guide should be well prepared for the tour and show enthusiasm. They should try to be a good team leader and be professional, and inform tourists of things unique to that region.