The Visit Nepal 2020 Secretariat has recognised renowned French photographer and film director Eric Valli as a Tourism Goodwill Ambassador for the Visit Nepal Year 2020 campaign. To mark the occasion the VNY 2020 Secretariat hosted a talk program by Eric Valli prior to presenting him with the honour on June 25 in Kathmandu. Eric Valli has a long and strong association with Nepal and captured some of the most remote and inaccessible areas on film putting Nepal on the global map.

Among his outstanding works is the capturing the salt caravan in Dolpo region, Eric Valli pays homage to the extraordinary culture of the region shooting for months at 15,000 feet. He has made lasting friendships with the Dolpo people and made a film called the Himalaya Caravan that was a 1999 Oscar nominee for the best foreign film.

Eric Valli was born in 1952 in Dijon, eastern France. He originally trained as a cabinet-maker, but has spent most of his career working on the relationship between man and nature. Since 1981 Eric has captured on camera some of the most inaccessible locations in the world, working for titles such as National Geographic, Life, GEO, Paris Match, Stern and Smithsonian magazines, and The Sunday Times of London.

Eric specialises in mountain scenery and is an expert on the Himalayas, in particular Nepal, Tibet and Afghanistan. In 1987, his photo story Honey Hunters – documenting the cliff-climbing Gurung tribesmen of west-central Nepal – won a World Press Award. In 1999 he directed the adventure story Himalaya – a tale of survival in the mountain region – which became the first Nepalese film to receive an Academy Award nomination for best foreign film. Eric has published 14 books to date, including in 2006 The Sky Will Be My Roof, a memoir of adventure and travel. In total, his photography has been recognised with three World Press Awards. In addition he has shot commercial work for Hermès and Louis Vuitton.