Nepal says it will ban foreigners from climbing Mount Everest this year in response to the coronavirus pandemic.
The move will devastate the nation’s economy and stop thousands of Australian adventurers from visiting the tourist hotspot.
Nepal has also halted its popular visa-on-arrival scheme, which will make it almost impossible for Australians to visit the country.
More than 30,000 Australians travel to Nepal each year, with the spring climbing season beginning in March and peaking in April and May.
Nepal relies heavily on tourism revenue, with hotels, airlines and the huge mountain-guiding community all set to suffer losses from the decision.