This small town has become a major trading post between Tibet and Nepal. The subtropical climate endows the small town with warm, humid weather and beautiful scenery throughout the year.
The town is built along a winding road that is lined with private homes, shops, restaurants and government buildings.
The booming border trade attracts merchants from inland China, Tibet and Nepal. Nepalese merchants export rice, flour, pepper, vegetables and perfumes while Chinese merchants sell wool, tea, salt and Tibetan medicine. There are also restaurants run by the Nepalese serving traditional dishes, instant noodles and beer produced in Nepal. A free trade market formed spontaneously near the Friendship Bridge about 8 years ago, still developing today.
According to an agreement between the Chinese and Nepalese governments, people living within 30 kilometres (18 miles) of the border may cross the border freely. Every day, hundreds of Chinese and Nepalese merchants conduct business under this agreement. Local Sherpa lease their houses to the merchants thus sharing in the profit of the border trade.
Zhangmu is going to undergo major construction to meet the demands of the booming tourism and border trade. Zhangmu Hotel, the town's only hotel, will be rebuilt and expanded. Within the next 5 years the local government plans to build a 2,220-metre (7,280 feet) roadway to improve traffic flow.
The road form Nyalam Town (elevations 4,000 meters) to Zhangmu via Qupo about 30 kilometers, are occupied by high mountains and deep valleys, cliffy narrow coulees, thickly wooded with tall trees and huge stones. On the mountain round the road there often lots waterfalls. On some cliffs there even more than 11 pieces of waterfalls falling from the thousand meters high peak in the clouds, across the stones and pines. Waterfalls, forest and high mountains are the typical scenery along the road. The lush pine trees along cliff hindering mountain climb. This amazing view is quite different from it in Himalayan. The Sino-Nepal tunnel is the best position for the Mountain View. The roof at the round corner from Industrious and Merchandise Office to Electric station is the best place to bird view of the Zhangmu Town. Car wash is free in Zhangmu.
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