Twenty-six Y-chromosomal short tandem repeat (STR) loci were amplified in a sample of 769 unrelated males from Nepal, using two multiplex polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assays. The 26 loci gave a discriminating power of 0.997, with 59% unique haplotypes, and the highest frequency haplotype occurring 12 times. We identified novel alleles at four loci, microvariants at a further two, and nine examples of amelogenin-Y deletions (1.2%). Comparison with a similarly sized Bhutanese sample typed with the same markers suggested histories of isolation and drift, with drift having a greater effect in Bhutan. Extended (11-locus) haplotypes for the Nepalese samples have been submitted to the Y-STR Haplotype Reference Database (YHRD).