By the third week of August 2009 I was already in Kathmandu. I was excited because Nepal was part of my dream destination ever since I got bitten by the travel bug. I shared a taxi to Thamel with another guy I met in the airport. As we drove from the airport to the city center, Kathmandu gave me an idea of what India looks like.
A lot of people were wearing colorful Indian clothes. Another thing that I noticed was the facial feature of Nepalese. A lot of them looks like Indians and lot of them looks like Filipinos, tan skin, with small dark brown eyes and dark brown hair.
We got off at Thamel and started looking for a cheap guesthouse. I couldn’t remember the exact amount that I paid but I’m sure it’s less than five dollars for a night. The room was big and had two beds that I shared with another traveler to save some money.
The first thing I did when I arrived in Kathmandu was talked to different travel agencies about getting my Indian visa. I was horrified when they said that I might not get it in Kathmandu because I’m a Filipino. The first time I heard it I was almost speechless. I went from one travel agency to another and received the same advice, I felt numb.
I was afraid that I might do a re-route to Bangkok just to get an Indian visa which would definitely hurt my so called budget. I talked to the guesthouse owner as well and he said that the reason behind that rule was the bad reputation that Filipinos have in Nepal.
I asked if there would be a chance that I might get it. He took a peek at my passport and examined the entry and exit dates in al stamps and said that I might because of the credibility of the passport and the existence of visas from USA and Europe.
I repeatedly went back to the Indian Embassy and applied it myself. After waiting for a couple of hours I was finally called. I was told that I could only get three months instead of the six months that I was asking for.
I pleaded, “Could you please give me six months?”
The officer said, “No!”
I conceded, “I’m ok with three!”
After a few visits to the embassy, I got my Indian Visa.
Wheeeeeeeeew! I finally could leave Thamel after staying there for ten days.
Check Indian Embassy Online for some updates. The process might change from time to time.
Here are some of the pictures I took while waiting in Kathmandu.