Kakarbhitta is the most easterly of Nepal's approved border crossings for foreigners. It has grown rapidly into a small thriving town by virtue of its location and because it is a focus of minor black-marketeering like all the Terai's other crossings. Foreign luxury goods transported from Kathmandu, mostly watches, electronic gadgets, cosmetics, clothing, and luggage, are sold in the many small shops that line every street in and around the square. The trade caters mainly to Indians crossing the border on shopping expeditions.
The Mahendra Highway divides the Himalayan foothills rising attractively above the town's wooded northern fringe from the Terai plains to the south, and continues into India as far as Siliguri. Extending intermittently west and northwest towards Ilam, shaded tea gardens endow Kakarbhitta with pleasant surroundings. Otherwise, the town can boast few tourist attractions, and its mélange of small dharbars, bars, shops, and travel agents is centered around the large and noisy bus stand which shares the main square with the bazaar. The new Tashi Chhoiling Buddhist Monastery is located in the southwest.
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