Alcohol in Nepal


An amazing and amusing selection of spirits is bottled in Nepal, ranging from the classic Khukuri Rum (dark and raisiny) to Ye Grand Earl Whisky (“Glasgow – London – Kathmandu). These are cheap and often rough, but tolerable when mixed with soft drinks.


Imported spirits and wine are available in supermarkets and convenience stores at practically duty free prices; many tourist restaurants and bars serve wine by the glass, and make cocktails with local or imported spirits.

International visitors are entitled to bring into Nepal up to 3 bottles of alcohol (wines or spirits) for personal use. Any more than that and you may be questioned. There are no duty free facilities at Tribhumvan airport in Kathmandu so it may possibly be better to make a purchase at your departure airport or en-route where duty free shops are available. Mixers such as cola, lemonade, juices and tonic waters are widely available.

The beer industry in Nepal is booming and makes a great accompaniment to Nepali and Indian food. Foreign brands brewed by local ventures – notably San Miguel, Carlsberg and Tuborg, which are widely available and taste pretty good. All beer bottles come in 650ml bottles. Remember! Beer is a lot better for a fiery curry than water is.

Nepalis are avid home brewers – Jaar is the Nepali term for home brewed beer, but it is more commonly referred to by its Tibetan name Chhang. Most often made from rice or millet, it can often taste quite sour and be very powerful.

Raksi is something you may come across on a trek and is very similar to tequila. Both these locally brewed drinks should be viewed with caution.