1722 hours, 10-02-2018, Belahiya, Bhairahawa Town, District Rupandehi, Lumbini Zone, Nepal:
After traveling for about 50 odd kms along the road moving through lush green fields of mustard, sugarcane and forests of Teak (Sagain), we stopped for snacks at a small shop. Here we had our first meal of the day – a couple of pakoras and samosas with tea.
Our journey of around 110 kms from Gorakhpur brought us to Sonauli, which is the transit point from where we were to cross the border into Nepal. Numerous trucks with their standard bulk load of goods were lined up till the security check post at the border. We were then advised by the cab driver to take a cycle rickshaw for the last 300 – 400 metres to the border, for the car would take longer to reach because of the traffic jam. Being an open border for Indian citizens, no passport and visa is required for entry and only an identity proof of Indian citizenship such as a Voters ID is valid.
As we crossed the gate of the Indian border towards Nepal, it was a unique first experience that I had – of passing the “No man’s land” on a cycle rickshaw.
We are now in Nepal at the bus stop at Belahiya (first station in Nepal after crossing the border at Sonauli) as the sun steadily makes it way to the horizon. There are plenty of buses here being boarded by travellers to Kathmandu, Pokhra and other parts of Nepal. Our plan is that we will hire another cab from here for the final 100 kms stretch of our journey ahead till Mudkilla, Ward Number 11, Galyang Municipality, District Syangja, Gandaki Zone. Before going ahead however, we exchanged our Indian Rupee for the Nepalese Rupee from an exchange shop at the bus stop.