The Gurung people, also called Tamu, are an ethnic group from different parts of Nepal. They live in small villages in the vast Annapurna mountain ranges. Shamanistic elements among the Gurungs remain strong and most Gurungs often embrace Buddhist and Bön rituals in all communal activities. In this remote region, they practice an ancient tradition of Hunting Hallucinative Honey in Himalaya where they descend towering cliffs on handmade ladders, to harvest honey nestled under jagged overhangs. The Gurung tribespeople of Nepal have been collecting honey from Himalayan cliffs for centuries, but now their lifestyle is under threat from commercialisation and tours offering visitors a chance to 'join a honey hunt'.
The Gurung tribesmen of Nepal are master honey hunters, risking their lives collecting honeycomb in the foothills of the Himalayas, using nothing more than handmade rope ladders and long sticks. The honey made by these bees is a product that comes from the nectar of kinds of poisonous flowers. That is probably what makes this honey – Red Honey – medicinal, intoxicating and hallucinogenic. Since it is difficult to harvest and has special properties, this kind of honey is expensive and sells for about 4 times the price of normal honey in the foreign market. The villages keep and share autumn honey for tea while the spring red honey is popular in whole Asia (especially wealthy countries) for its perceived medicinal qualities.
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