Geography

Nepal is a land-locked country located in South Asia between China in the north and India in the south, east and west. The total land area of Nepal is 147,181 sq.km. The geographical coordinates are 28°00′N 84°00′E. Nepal measures about 800 kms (497mi) along its Himalayan axis by 150 to 250 kms ( 93 to 155 mi) across and is vertically intersected by the river system. Nepal is divided into three main geographical regions: Himalayan, mid Hill and Terai region. The highest point in the country is Mt. Everest ( 8,848 M) whereas the lowest point is Kechana Kalan in Jhapa ( 60M). This variation occurs at the distance of less than 200Kms. Such geographical variation is hardly found in any country around the world

The Himalayan range lies in the northern part of Nepal. This region covers 16% of the country’s land. The himalayan region lies above 3000 m. The Himalayan region consists of mountains, alpine pastures and temperate forests limited by the tree-line (4,000 m) and snow line (5,500m). Out of 14, 8000m mountains in the world, 8 lies in Nepal. Sagarmatha or Mount Everest (8,848 m), Kanchenjunga (8,586 m), Lhotse (8,516 m), Makalu (8,463 m), Cho Oyu (8,201m), Dhaulagiri (8,167 m), Manaslu (8,163 m) and Annapurna (8,091 m). Mustang and Dolpa (above 3,600m) are the inner himalayan vallley which is also called cold deserts and shares topographical characteristics with the Tibetan plateau. There are around 6,000 rivers which are snow fed or dependent on rain. Therefore, Nepal is also called “waters towers of south Asia”. Nepal is 2nd richest country in water resources after Brazil. The perennial rivers include Mahakali, Karnali, Narayani and Koshi rivers originating in the Himalayas. Medium-sized rivers like Babai, West Rapti, Bagmati, Kamla, Kankai and Mechi originate in the Midlands and Mahabharat range. A large number of seasonal streams, mostly originating in Siwaliks, flow across the Terai.

The Hills region covers 65% of the Nepal’s land area. The elevation ranges from 300m to 3000m. This region lies in the middle belt of the country and it is surrounded by Himalayan and Terai region. This region at the north is almost occupied by Mahabharat range with high hills and dense forest. At the southern part below the Mahabharata range lies Siwalik range which is covered by lower hills and valleys

The Terai region lies in the sourthern part of Nepal, mostly border with India. The altitudes of Terai region ranges from 60-305 m and it occupies about 17 percent of the total land area of Nepal. The Terai regions comprises of lowest point called Kanchan Kalna at 229 ft (70M). The Terai has a humid, subtropical climate. This region is also divided into two region inner and outer Terai. Both inner and outer Terai posses fertile land and famous for agriculture. This region is also called grain house of Nepal as there is huge production of grains.

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