CHITWAN, Feb 13: Sauraha Food Festival kicked off at Sauraha in Chitwan from Wednesday.
Restaurant and Bar Association of Nepal (REBAN) Sauraha Chapter is organizing the four-day event to attract foreign as well as local tourists to this small town that lies in the buffer zone of Chitwan National Park.
The festival has 62 stalls showcasing both traditional and international cuisines.
Himnath Dawadi, chief district officer of Chitwan, inaugurated the festival amid a colorful ceremony. Speaking on the occasion, Dawadi said festivals like these would play an important role in increasing the number of tourists to Chitwan.
Earlier, a colorful procession, which showcased culture and tradition of different ethnic and indigenous groups like Tharu, Tamang, Gurung and Magar, was taken out.
PHOTO: CHANDNI HAMAL
Keeping in view the Valentines Day, hotels in Sauraha are offering 25 percent discount for couples. Similarly, the organizers are planning to award the best couple visiting the festival.
“We will select the best couple on different criteria which has been kept secret,” Lal Bahadur Bhatta, event coordinator, told Republica.
According to the organizers, the major attraction of the event is gundruk, dhido, momo, and maize and soybean eating contest. Similarly, the organizers are also holding alcohol and Fanta drinking contest.
“Those who eat hot gundruk and dhido and drink Fanta and alcohol with the best timing will win the contest,” said Subash Gautam president of REBAN Sauraha.
The Regional Hotel Association and the Tourism Entrepreneurs Organization are co-organizers of the event. Bottlers Nepal Terai is the sponsor of the festival
Along with continental and other international cuisines, visitors will also get opportunity to taste foods of different ethnic groups like Newar, Tharu, Magar and Gurung.
Besides, other entertaining games like pot breaking competition among journalists, tug-of-war, and waiters´ and tourists´ race will also be organized.
During the festival, participating restaurants will provide 15 percent discount on food. Similarly, those who book elephant safari, canoeing trip and jeep safari at the event venue will get 10 percent discount.
The organizers are charging Rs 30 as entrance fee. They are expecting around 60,000 visitors.