Government Advice – the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office publish a whole page of extensive advice on Nepal, including health advice, at: http://www.fco.gov.uk/en/travel-and-living-abroad/travel-advice-by-country/asia-oceania/nepal
The US Government publishes advice at: http://travel.state.gov
Nepal has no official vaccination requirement for entry. However you should make an effort to protect yourself from some serious diseases that can be prevented by vaccine or preventive measures. Vaccines for Hepatitis A and B, Typhoid and Meningitis are necessary. You can start thinking about this about two months before your departure.
- Hepatitis A – strongly recommended.
- Typhoid – Recommended. This disease is highly prevalent in Nepal.
- Meningitis – Recommended. The risk is low in short time travellers, but the disease is serious and the vaccination is safe.
- Tetanus and Diphtheria – You should have a booster if you have had one in the last 10 years.
- Polio – You should have a booster if you have had one in the last 10 years.
- Tuberculosis – Ask your doctor for a Mantoux test, then depending on the result, discuss a BCG vaccination.
- Hepatitis B – Recommended
- Rabies – The risk of infection is low.
- Japanese B Encephalitis – This is a mosquito borne disease and is not found above 1,000m. Though cases have been reported in the Terai but not usually effecting the tourists. It is, though, a very nasty disease and the vaccine is safe and effective.
- Malaria – In Nepal, malaria is limited to the lowlands of Terai, Chitwan and the area adjoining India. There is no risk of malaria in Kathmandu.
- General Health and Hygiene – There are many tips regarding general personal health which your trip leader will brief you on beofre departure from Kathmandu. Basic camp hygiene is crucial in Nepal; hand washing facilities are provided before all meals and this simple measure is probably the most effective thing you can do to protect against stomach bugs and other upsets.
When in Nepal please remember that you should only drink water that is either bottled or is specifically treated for drinking. Tap water is not safe anywhere in Nepal, and especially in Kathmandu. You shouldn’t even use tap water to brush your teeth or wash your toothbrush!
In addition, don’t drink stream water anywhere – even high in the mountains. The Giardia parasite is present and travels upstream and can give you a nasty and long lasting stomach upset. It is treatable with a simple course of pills but is very unpleasant in the meantime.