Are you traveling to Nepal and want to know about major airports in Nepal? In Nepal, we have 3 international and 51 domestic airports but not all domestic airports are in operation.
These airports are very important for tourists coming to Nepal and also the tourists who want to explore different places at that time.
We have categorized the airports in detail with their location, elevation, and others. And also we will give an overview of major airports.
In this blog, you are also going to learn about
- List of Domestic and International Airports.
- Facts about Airports in Nepal
- Frequently Asked Questions
- IATA Code, etc.
List of Airports in Nepal
|1||Tribhuwan International Airport||Bagmati/Kathmandu|
|2||Gautam Buddha International Airport||Lumbini/Rupandehi|
|3||Pokhara International Airport||Pokhara/Gandaki|
|9||Dhangadhi Airport||Sudur Paschim/Kailali|
|16||Manamaya Rai Khanidanda Airport||1/Khotang|
|20||Tenzing Hillary (Lukla) Airport||1/Solukhumbu|
|25||Rukum Salle Airport||Karnali/West Rukum|
|27||Sanfebagar Airport||Sudur Paschim/Achham|
|29||Bajhang Airport||Sudur Paschim/Bajhang|
|30||Baitadi Airport||Sudur Paschim/Baitadi|
|31||Bajura Airport||Sudur Paschim/Bajura|
|32||Doti Airport||Sudur Paschim/Doti|
Start Here: Getting Around Nepal
Top International Airports in Nepal
There are currently three international airports in Nepal, one is Tribhuvan International Airport (TIA) in Kathmandu, other is Pokhara International Airport (PIA), and another one is Gautam Buddha International Airport (GBIA) in Lumbini.
TIA is the only airport that has regularly scheduled flights and is the hub for all international airlines operating in Nepal.
GBIA is a new airport compared to TIA and operates a few international and domestic flights.
PIA is the new international airport in Nepal among all and it is one of the most awaited airports which is located in Pokhara
1. Tribhuwan International Airport, Kathmandu
Tribhuwan International Airport, Kathmandu is one of the most important airports in Nepal. The airport was inaugurated on 15th June 1955 by King Mahendra but the first landed single-engine aircraft was in 1949. It is located at the heart of Kathmandu, about 5.56 km east of Kathmandu city.
Tribhuwan International Airport is one of the busiest airports in Nepal and a fully operated TIA can handle over 90,000 passengers daily and is also known as Kathmandu Airport.
Tribhuvan International Airport is the primary airport serving Nepal’s capital, Kathmandu. It is located in the center section, within the city’s ring road, and the airport code is KTM.
The airport opened in 1949 and was later renamed after King Tribhuwan Bir Bikram Shah Dev. The airport has two terminals: domestic and international. In addition to being a hub for domestic flights, Tribhuwan International Airport serves as a gateway for tourists visiting Nepal.
After the airport renovation, it has several amenities like Nepal Tourism Board Information Counter, Press Rooms, Cargo Facilities, Trolley Services, SIM card center, Police Help Desk, Banking Facilities, Post Office, Restaurants and Cafeteria, Medical Services, Foreign Exchange, and shopping centers as well as parking lots for vehicles in front of both domestic and international terminals.
|Elevation||1339.54 m/4394.76 ft.|
2. Gautam Buddha International Airport, Bhairahawa
Gautam Buddha International Airport, Bhairahawa is a newly built airport in Nepal. It serves the city of Bhairahawa and the surrounding region. The airport was built as an alternative route to the Tribhuvan International Airport, which was located about 270+ kilometers away.
The new airport is operated by 2022, and it has helped make travel easier for people in the region who previously had to travel to Birgunj or Kathmandu for flights out of Nepal.
The airport is named after Gautam Buddha, who was born in Nepal. It serves as a gateway to international as well as domestic travelers, which are both popular destinations among tourists from Nepal.
|Elevation||105 m/344 ft.|
3. Pokhara International Airport, Pokhara
Pokhara International Airport (PIA) is the newest international airport in Nepal, located in the city of Pokhara in Gandaki Province. Pokhara is a popular tourist destination known for its beautiful lakes, mountain views, and natural attractions. The airport is situated approximately 3 kilometers east of the existing domestic airport and is around 200 kilometers west of the capital city of Nepal.
The PIA has a runway that is 45 meters wide and 2500 meters long and is designated as an ICAO 4D Category runway. This allows it to accommodate larger aircraft such as the B737 series. The airport also has a Non-Precision Approach (NPA) on Runway 12 and an ILS System Precision Approach CAT-1 (PA1) facility on Runway 30. In total, the airport has three international parking bays and eight domestic parking bays.
The airport is expected to handle up to one million passengers per year and is expected to play a major role in the economic development of the region. Its strategic location makes it a gateway for tourists and pilgrims traveling to the famous religious site of Muktinath, as well as for those undertaking the Annapurna Round Trek.
Overall, the Pokhara International Airport is a welcome addition to the aviation infrastructure in Nepal, providing easier connectivity and further boosting the country’s tourism industry.
Also Read: Kathmandu to Pokhara Plane Ticket Price
Top Domestic Airports in Nepal
According to the Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal (CAAN), there are 51 domestic airports where 32 are in operation while 19 are not in operation due to various reasons.
Here are some of the domestic airports in Nepal that are mostly used on daily flights.
1. Tenzing Hillary (Lukla) Airport, Solukhumbu
Tenzing Hillary Airport, also known as Lukla Airport, is the main airport for the Everest region of Nepal. It is located in Lukla, a village in Khumbu Pasang Lhamu Rural Municipality in Solukhumbu District.
The airport was named after Sir Edmund Hillary and Sherpa Tenzing Norgay, who were the first to reach the summit of Mount Everest in 1953.
Tenzing Hillary (Lukla) Airport serves as a gateway to Mount Everest. It has been used by thousands of adventurers and mountaineers as a starting point for their expeditions. Lukla Airport is rated as one of the most dangerous airports in the world because of the shorter runway.
The airport sits at an elevation of 9,334 feet (2,845 meters) above sea level and has a single runway measuring only 1,729 feet (527 meters) long.
The runway is also very short and narrow compared to other major airports around the world – and it’s surrounded by mountains on three sides!
It can be difficult to land at this airport because there are no navigational aids available and pilots must rely on visual references only when approaching this runway.
Pilots must be careful when landing because there are often wind gusts that can push planes off course during takeoffs or landings. so, most experienced pilots are only allowed to fly over here.
|Elevation||2846 m/9337 ft.|
2. Pokhara Airport, Pokhara
Pokhara airport is a gateway to Pokhara, the second-largest city in Nepal. It has an elevation of 822 m/2696 ft. and is just 200 kilometers away from Kathmandu city.
Well, it is the second busiest airport after TIA. Also, it is connected not only from Kathmandu but to various other airports within the country.
Pokhara is a great place to stop before or after your trip to Nepal. The airport is located in Pokhara, a city that is the gateway to many of the country’s most popular tourist attractions. Almost 50% of the annual country’s tourists visit Pokhara.
The airport is easy to reach from the city center: it’s only about a few minute’s taxi ride. This airport acts as a hub for pilgrims to visit religious sites like Muktinath, Jomsom, etc. also trekking to Annapurna Regions.
You can also visit beautiful lakes in Pokhara like Phewa Lake, Rupa Lake, Begnas Lake, etc.
|Elevation||822 m/2696 ft.|
3. Biratnagar Airport, Biratnagar
The Biratnagar Airport is the second busiest domestic airport after Pokhara Airport in Nepal. It is located in the city of Biratnagar, in the eastern part of the country. The airport is about 5 kilometers northwest of the city.
The airport started its first operation on 04 July 1958. Since then many airlines like Buddha Air, Yeti Airlines, Tara Air, Sita Air, Simrik Airlines, Summit Airways, Nepal Airlines, Shree Airlines, etc have been using this airport for daily flights.
Among the domestic/hub airports in Nepal, Biratnagar Airport is the first certified aerodrome after only Tribhuvan International Airport.
The airport is a hub for domestic flights where people from Jhapa, Biratnagar, Dharan, Itahari, etc. take services.
|Elevation||74.972 m/245.94 ft.|
4. Nepalgunj Airport, Nepalgunj
Nepalgunj Airport is a domestic airport serving Nepalgunj, a city in Nepal. The airport is located in the Banke district, about 5 kilometers from the city center.
Nepalgunj Airport has a runway that is 1505 m x 30 m. Nepalgunj Airport is also a hub for domestic airlines operating in Nepal. Nepalgunj Airport is served by several airlines, including Buddha Air, Yeti Airlines, Tara Air, Shree Airlines, Saurya Airlines, Sita Air, Summit Airways, Nepal Airlines, etc.
The airport has regular flights to and from Kathmandu, Pokhara, etc, and is operated by the Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal (CAAN).
Nepalgunj Airport is located in a strategic location where it has the highest number of air links. There are 16 links to airports from Sudur Paschim & Lumbini Province.
It is situated near the Indo-Nepal border. The airport is also close to several tourist destinations, such as the Bageshwari Temple, Banke National Park, Ghaghara River, etc.
Domestic passengers travel to this airport from Jumla, Simikot, Rara, Dolpa, Bajura, Sanfebagar, Salle, Kathmandu, etc.
Nepalgunj Airport plays an important role in the economy of Nepal. The airport is a major contributor to the tourism industry of Nepal. The airport is also a key hub for Indian pilgrims visiting Kailash Mansarovar situated in Tibet.
|Elevation||158 m/518 ft.|
5. Simara Airport, Simara
Simara Airport is located in the town of Simara in the Bara District of Nepal. It is the nearest airport to Tribhuvan International Airport in Kathmandu i.e. it is only 39 miles far away. The airport has one runway capable of handling small turboprop aircraft and helicopters.
Also, the Simara Airport is one of the most important airports in Nepal. Since it is linked with Raxaual i.e. commercial hub of Nepal for importing and exporting goods from India. The commercial town is located in Birjung which is 20 kilometers away from the Simara airport.
Simara Airport started its first operation on 4 July 1958. The airport is operatable in all seasons as it is not restricted to any weather condition. The airport is a vital link for the people of Simara and the Bara District, providing access to essential services and supplies.
|Elevation||136 m/445 ft.|
6. Bharatpur Airport, Bharatpur
Bharatpur Airport (IATA: BHR, ICAO: VNBP) is a domestic airport serving Bharatpur, the capital city of Chitwan District in Nepal. The airport is located southeast of the town.
Bharatpur Airport was established in 1961. It provides its services in all weather conditions. The airport has a single runway of 1200 m x 30 m in dimension.
It is capable of handling small turboprop aircraft. The airport has a single terminal building that can handle a large number of passengers.
The airport is served by several domestic airlines, including Buddha Air, and Yeti Airlines.
Bharatpur Airport is a gateway to several tourist destinations in Nepal, including the famous tourist spot Chitwan National Park. Tourist from Kathmandu prefers this airport as it’s the quickest way to reach Chitwan.
|Elevation||207 m/679 ft.|
7. Dhangadhi Airport, Dhangadhi
Dhangadhi Airport is an airport located in Dhangadhi, Nepal. The airport has been operating since 1964 The airport elevation is 189 m/621 ft. and has one runway, which is 1800 meters long.
Dhangadhi Airport is currently served by several domestic airlines. The domestic airlines operating at the airport are Buddha Air, Shree Airlines, Nepal Airlines, and Summit Air.
Dhangadhi Airport is located in Nepal’s far-western region, also known as the Far-Western Development Region. The airport is expected to play a vital role in the region’s development and will help boost tourism and economic activity.
|Elevation||189 m/621 ft|
8. Janakpur Airport, Janakpur
Janakpur Airport is located in Janakpurdham, Nepal. It is the only airport in the city and is, therefore, a vital regional transport hub. The airport has one runway with an asphalt surface of 1306 m x 30 m.
The airport is served by several airlines, including Shree Airlines, Buddha Air, and Yeti Airlines. There are direct flights to Kathmandu and other major cities in Nepal, such as Pokhara.
The airport is well-equipped and has a range of facilities for passengers and it is an essential gateway to the city of Janakpur and the surrounding region. Ram Janaki Temple, Ganga Sagar, and Ram Mandir are some of the famous historical and religious places in Janakpur.
|Elevation||71 m/233 ft.|
9. Tumlingtar Airport, Tumlingtar
Tumlingtar Airport is a domestic airport in Tumlingtar, Nepal. It is the gateway to the eastern part of Nepal and serves as a hub for domestic airlines.
The airport has a single runway and can handle small-sized aircraft with a runway Designation of 16/34 and a dimension of 1295 m x 30 m.
The airport is at an elevation of 401 m/1316 ft. Domestic airlines namely Buddha Air, Buddha Air, and Yeti Airlines provide service in this area.
|Elevation||401 m/1316 ft.|
10. Phaplu Airport, Solukhumbu
Phaplu Airport is located in Solukhumbu, Nepal. It is one of the airports in Solukhumbu district and is about 1 kilometer from the district headquarters, Namche Bazaar.
The airport has a single runway (02/20) which is 680 meters long and 20 meters wide. It can accommodate small turboprop aircraft and helicopters.
The airport is owned by the Government of Nepal and operated by the Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal (CAAN).
Tara Air, Sita Air, Nepal Airlines, and Summit Air are the only domestic airlines that operate to and from Phaplu Airport.
Due to its location in a valley, the airport is also subject to strong crosswinds, so only experienced pilots should attempt to land here.
Phaplu Airport is an essential gateway for trekkers and climbers heading to Mount Everest and the surrounding area despite its challenges. It is also the starting point for the famous Khumbu Trekking Route.
|Elevation||2468 m/8097 ft.|
11. Chandragadhi Airport, Jhapa
Chandragadhi Airport is located in Bhadrapur, Jhapa district of Nepal AKA Bhadrapur Airport. It is the airport in the eastern region of Nepal nearest to the Indian Border (Siliguri).
The airport year of the start of Operation was November 1963. The airport has a single runway which is 1,500 meters long and 30 meters wide.
The airport can handle a medium passenger flow at a time. The airport is operated by the Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal (CAAN).
Currently, five domestic airlines are operating regular flights to and from Chandragadhi airport.
They are Buddha Air, Saurya Airlines, Shree Airlines, Sita Air, and Yeti Airlines. The airport is connected to Bhadrapur city and is 3.2 Km North West from City.
|Elevation||95.149 m/312.184 ft.|
12. Lamidanda Airport, Khotang
Lamidanda Airport is located in the Khotang district of Nepal. It is a public airport owned by the Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal.
The airport has a single asphalt Concrete runway which is 520 meters long and 10 meters wide. The airport is at an elevation of 1227 m/4026 ft. It is located about 8 hours’ walking distance from the District headquarters of Diktel.
The airport is connected to the district headquarters by a road. Lamidanda Airport was established in 1972. The nearest pilgrimage site to Lamidanda Airport is Halesi Mahadev.
|Elevation||1227 m/4026 ft.|
13. Jomsom Airport, Mustang
Jomsom Airport is a public airport in Mustang, a district in the Gandaki Province of Nepal. It is the gateway to the Upper Mustang region and the only district airport. The airport is situated at 2736 m./8976 ft.
The airport has a single runway that is 810 m x 20 m and is paved with asphalt. It can handle small aircraft and is serviced by Tara Air and Summit Air.
Due to its high elevation, the airport is subject to strong winds and bad weather. As a result, flight operations are often disrupted.
The airport is located in a remote and mountainous region. The Jomson airport is situated close to the Tibetan border and is guarded by the Nepalese Army.
Despite its challenges, the airport is an essential gateway to the Mustang region and its unique culture and landscape.
|Elevation||2736 m/8976 ft.|
Facts about Airports in Nepal
- Nepal is home to three international airports – Tribhuvan International Airport (TIA) in Kathmandu, Gautam Buddha International Airport (GBIA) in Lumbini, and Pokhara International Airport (PIA) in Pokhara.
- There are also 54 airports including international & domestic airports throughout the country where 34 airports are in operation and 19 are not in operation.
- TIA is the largest and one of the busiest airports in Nepal. A fully operated TIA can handle over 90,000 passengers daily.
- TIA is located in the capital city of Kathmandu and is the main hub for international flights.
- TIA has two terminals- one for domestic flights and one for international flights.
- GBIA is an airport, which can serve over 1,00,000 passengers per year.
- GBIA is located in the city of Lumbini, which is home to the world-famous Buddhist pilgrimage site.
- Major Domestic airports include Pokhara Airport, Biratnagar Airport, and Tenzing-Hillary Airport (Lukla).
- Pokhara Airport is located in the city of Pokhara and is the gateway to the popular Annapurna region.
FAQs about Airports in Nepal
Which is the largest airport in Nepal?
According to CAANepal, Tribhuvan International Airport (TIA) is the largest airport in Nepal with an area of 3565350.49 sq. m.
Is Nepal airport safe?
Yes, Nepal airports are safe. Nepal is one of the safe countries to travel to. There are no reports of terrorist activities in Nepal.
Do I need a visa to fly to Nepal?
Yes, you need a visa to fly to Nepal. All foreign nationals are required to have a valid passport and a visa to enter Nepal except India.
Can I fly direct to Nepal?
Yes, you can fly direct to Nepal. You can fly direct to Nepal from New Delhi, Mumbai, Bangkok, Bahrain, Dhaka, Karachi, Paro, Guangzhou, Lhasa, Kuala Lumpur, Hong Kong, Amsterdam, and Dubai. You can also fly directly to Nepal from Seoul, Hong Kong, and Doha.
What are the international airports in Nepal?
There are three international airports in Nepal – Tribhuvan International Airport (TIA), Gautam Buddha International Airport (GBIA), and Pokhara International Airport (PIA). TIA is the only international airport in Kathmandu, whereas GBIA is an international airport located in Lumbini, which is the birthplace of Lord Buddha, and PIA is located in the tourism hub, a gateway to Muktinath and Annapurna Range.
How many domestic airports are there in Nepal?
There are a total of 51 domestic airports in Nepal. Of these, only 32 are in operation. The remaining airports are under construction or are yet to be constructed.
Which is the busiest airport in Nepal?
Tribhuvan International Airport (TIA) is the busiest airport in Nepal. It is the only international airport in the Kathmandu Valley and handles most of Nepal’s international and domestic air traffic.
What is the code of Tribhuvan International Airport?
The IATA code of Tribhuvan International Airport is KTM and the location indicator code is VNKT.
What is the code of Gautam Buddha International Airport?
The IATA code of Gautam Buddha International Airport is BWA and the location indicator code is VNBW.
Finally, the blog is written to enlighten the people who are traveling to Nepal. It is prepared to show major and operating airports in the country.
Also, this blog is written to provide information about 16 Major Airports in Nepal (International & Domestic) to domestic, and foreign tourists traveling across Nepal.
Thank you for reading! See you on my next blog.