The Cambodia Association of Travel Agents (CATA) and Nepal’s Tourism Agents Association signed a memorandum of understanding on Tuesday in Phnom Penh to promote joint tourism between the countries.
“The MoU signing marks another milestone of stronger cooperation between Cambodia and Nepal in the tourism industry,” said Chhay Sivlin, president of CATA.
“Nepal is one of the choices among Cambodian people when they travel to religious sites. In Buddhism, Lumbini in Nepal is sacred because it was the birthplace of Buddha,” added Ms Sivlin.
She said last year 2,505 Nepali tourists visited Cambodia and added she was optimistic more Nepalis would head to Cambodia in the near future.
Bimal Kandel, director of the Nepal National Tourism Board, said there were commonalities in the tourism sector of both countries.
“These common factors make us feel like home in Cambodia,” said Mr Kandel.
“About 100,000 Nepali tourists visited Southeast Asia last year and a similar number of tourists from the region visited Nepal,” he added.
“Tourism is not only about food or entertainment, but also about how we look at things. It is a journey of discovery and understanding about the different cultures.”
In June, the Embassy of Nepal in Bangkok, which is concurrently accredited Cambodia, organised a tourism promotion event in Phnom Penh with the theme “Nepal is Beautiful: Visit, and Enjoy in Nepal”.
Nilesh Adhikari, managing director of Aakarshan Travel and Tours Pvt. Ltd. said that tourism cooperation between Nepal and Cambodia would benefit both countries.
“We have tour operators here in Cambodia who are working on a long-term plan to bring tourists to Nepal,” said Mr Adhikari.
Mr Adhikari added that his company was also linking up with tour companies in Nepal to encourage Nepali tourists to visit Cambodia.
“I think Nepali tourists would enjoy visiting Cambodia,” he said.