Pokhara Street Festival Celebrates Cultural Fusion and Local Delicacies
The Pokhara Street Festival, organized by the Restaurant and Bar Association (REBAN), has been a recurring event since 2054 (Nepali calendar year). Initially conceptualized by Hari Prasad Gurung, the founding chairman of REBAN, the festival aimed to showcase local culture and delicacies to both domestic and foreign tourists.
Over its 25 years of existence, the festival has evolved into a celebration of cultural harmony, exhibiting various ethnicities' social cohesion and promoting cultural exchange. Gurung highlighted that the festival not only showcases traditional food and culture but also supports local artisans by commercializing their products.
The ongoing 25th edition of the festival was inaugurated with the slogan "Eat, Dance, and Revel on the Streets." Dhanraj Acharya, the Mayor of Pokhara Metropolitan City, initiated the festival, emphasizing its significance in promoting Pokhara as the 'tourism capital.'
The festival includes a range of cultural programs, showcasing diverse traditions, ethnic attire, and even international cuisine exhibitions. Various renowned personalities, including cultural experts and artists, were honored during the event.
Vishwaraj Paudel, the festival's coordinator, highlighted the inclusion of diverse events such as double song competitions, awareness-based street dramas, selfie booths, cultural displays, and evening concerts. Additionally, the festival emphasized Pokhara's tourism development, highlighting opportunities and challenges in the evolving tourism landscape.
Paudel also mentioned that around 500,000 visitors are estimated to attend the festival, which features over 30 types of local cuisines, contributing to the festival's success as a platform for cultural exchange and culinary delight.
The festival not only showcases cultural richness but also emphasizes the need for sustainable tourism, promoting local art, agriculture, and ecological conservation, aligning with Pokhara's evolving tourism scenario.