Nepal officially called the Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal, is a landlocked country in South Asia. It is a sovereign country bordered by Tibet in the north and India in the south, east, and west.

Nepal’s beauty is recognized throughout the world for its diversity: geographical, cultural, and spiritual. It includes fertile plains, forested hills, and the world’s ten tallest peaks, including the highest point on Earth- Mount Everest. The geography of Nepal is segregated into Terai, Hilly, and Mountain region.

From flora and fauna to multi-ethnicity, Nepal is a land of diversity, welcoming all tourists to explore its vicinity. Nepal also houses 10 UNESCO World Heritage Sites. The capital city, Kathmandu, alone has four heritage sites.

Nepal, while being a multiethnic country, speaks Nepali as its official language. Nepal opened its borders for foreigners in the 1950s.


Nepal is an exciting destination to fulfill your adrenaline rush. It is a spectacular place for mountain lovers looking forward to hiking the Himalayas’ breathtaking routes, rafting the roaring rivers, or falling free on a bungee jump in the Himalayan gorge.

Nepal offers more daring activities like zip-lining, paragliding, canyoning, kayaking, mountain biking, among the beautiful landscapes of the country.


Nepal is religiously diverse and has a population comprising Hindus, Buddhists, Islams, Kirantis, and Christians. Nepal welcomes countless pilgrims to stroll through the temples of Kathmandu, Patan, and Bhaktapur.

Besides the temples scattered in and near the Kathmandu valley, pilgrims are also wooed by Lord Buddha’s birthplace in Lumbini and the Muktinath’s trek.

Wild Life

Besides the mountains and religions, Nepal is a land of steamy jungles and wild animals lurking inside them. The country has yaks, thars and is even said to have seen the mythical creature, Yetis, in the mountains. The country has tigers, elephants, buffalos, reptiles, and exotic birds in the jungles of Terai.

Nepal as a piece of heaven

Only a few countries can provide a sense of peace and calm, and Nepal is one. Wandering Nepal’s countryside, away from the city areas’ hustle and bustle shows you a different side of Nepal.

In addition to the adventure, visitors can relax and experience the diverse cultures of the ethnic minorities in Nepal’s hills and mountains. Nepal’s temple towns like Lumbini and Jomsom also have a different atmosphere. The sound of hymns and chants from pilgrims creates a positive atmosphere.

People Of Nepal

The inhabitants of Nepal are known as Nepali or Nepalese. The country has descendants of three major migrations: India, Tibet, and North Burma, and Yunnan of China.


Nepali is home to 125 ethnic groups. Currently, there are 123 different languages spoken within the different communities in Nepal. The linguistic heritage stems from three major language groups: Indo-Aryan, Tibeto-Burman, and other indigenous heritages.

The Kirat of the eastern region, Newars of Kathmandu, and Tharus of the Terai region were the early settlers before the Indo-Aryan and Tibetan tribes. The Indo-Aryans are the Paharis (Chhetris, Brahman-Hills, and others) with Hindu backgrounds. In contrast, the Tibeto-Nepalese groups are the Tamangs, Bhutia (Sherpa), and Sunuwars residing in the north and east, Magar and Gurung living in west-central Nepal.


Nepal is declared a secular country by the Constitution of Nepal 2015 (Part 1, Article 4). Previously, Nepal was officially a Hindu kingdom. According to the 2011 census, Nepal had a large number of people following Hinduism (81.3%), followed by Buddhism (9%), Islam (4.4%), Kirant (3.1%), Christianity (1.4%), and nature worship (0.8%). Nepal has the second-highest number of Hindus in the world, after India.


Nepal is a country rich in cultural heritage that represents a fusion of Indo-Aryan and Tibeto-Mongolian influences. With over 125 distinct ethnic groups, Nepal’s culture is represented through dance and music, folklore, arts and architecture, language and literature, festivals, food and drinks, and even greetings!

Nepal’s culture especially is highlighted through the statues, paintings, and architectures created by the Newars of the Kathmandu valley.

Art and Architecture

The Newars of Kathmandu valley highly contribute to the cultural heritage of Nepal. The Newar artisans’ works (sculptures, paintings, architecture) are influenced by religious themes and depict the life of gods, saints, and man’s relationship to society and the universe.

The early Buddhist constructions in Kapilvastu and the constructions done by Ashoka in the Kathmandu valley around 250 B.C are some of Nepal’s oldest known architecture pieces. In terms of art, the Tibetan Buddhism painting tradition called the ‘Thangkas’ is highly practiced. It is famous among Buddhist monks and Newar artisans.

In terms of wooden architecture, the Changu Narayan temple is the finest. The Kathmandu, Patan, and Bhaktapur Durbar Squares are also fine examples and pride of Nepal’s architectural beauty.

Dance and Music

Dance and music are typical among Nepalese. Legends have it that Nepal’s dances originated in the Himalayas, where Lord Shiva performed the Tandava dance. Every religion and tribe has its distinctive sound and instrument that they play during their respective religious ceremonies. The songs usually revolve around marriage rites, war stories, everyday village life, and crop harvesting lyrics.

Among so many, the Tharu stick dance and peacock dance are the most famous ones. Other traditional Nepali dances and music present in Nepal are Maruni, Lakhey, and Tamang Selo.


Nepal’s literature is closely related to the rest of South Asia. Most of the literary works were written by Brahmin priests in Sanskrit. Those works included religious texts and fantasies involving the monarchs, gods, and demons. Nepali language literature is dated older than the 17th century, while the Newar literature goes almost 500 years back.

Bhanubhakta Acharya (1814-1868) began the modern history of Nepali literature with his well-known and influential Nepali works, which were accessible to a large population. One of his major works was the Nepali translation of the ancient Hindu epic “Ramayana.”

By the mid-twentieth century, Nepali literature was influenced by western literary traditions. The writers started writing about contemporary social problems. After the country gained democracy in 1951, Nepali literature bloomed and continued to modernize.


In ancient times, both men and women wore draped clothes. Women wore sari while men wore dhoti.
After the Kushans arrived from Central Asia in around 48 A.D., sewn garments started becoming popular. Following this, Daura Suruwal with Patuka and Khukuri and Gunyon-Cholo became the national costume for men and women, respectively.

In the Himalayas, women wear Chuba with an apron-like cloth in front while men wear high collar shirts with long sleeves dresses. Throughout the years, the dressing style of Nepalese has changed. People no longer wear these costumes daily but instead wear them on formal occasions.

Nepalese Cuisines

Nepali cuisine consists of various items that depend on soil types, climate, culture, and ethnicity. All of these cuisines are made by using locally available herbs and spices, vegetables, and fruits. Nepal’s staple food is dal-bhat (rice and lentils soup), fried leafy greens, vegetable/meat curry, poppadoms, and salad.

In Terai, chapati replaces steamed rice. Some also replace rice with Dhindo. Another Nepali cuisine is a hybrid of its northern and southern neighboring countries. However, it has its unique flavor. Newari cuisine is a famous cuisine of Nepal that is richer and diverse than other cuisines. The Newari cuisine, known as Samaya baji, consists of flattened rice surrounded by a dozen dishes of cereals, meat and vegetable curries, and pickles.

The most famous Newari dishes are Kwanti (sprouted beans), Chhwela (ground beef), Chatamari (rice flour crepe), Bara (fried lentil and egg cake), and Kachila (marinated raw minced beef). Juju Dhau is a sweet yogurt produced in Bhaktapur that is famous among tourists and locals. Selroti, Kasaar, Fini, Chaku are other sweet delicacies found in Nepal.

Thakali cuisine is also a well-known food choice that you must-try. The dishes blend Tibetan and Indian ingredients. One of the most famous and people’s favorite dishes is MoMo: Nepali dumplings which are spicier than its northern neighbors. Nepalese also brew local alcohol (Rakshi) from rice, millet, and apples.


Nepalese are very warm and friendly people, and greetings are expected, especially to the most senior person in a group. It is possible to communicate in English in most places of Nepal. However, knowing some phrases would work as an advantage to enrich your travel experience:

  • Namaste: Na-mas-tay: Hello!
  • Dhanyawaad: Dhan-yah-bad: Thankyou!
  • Maph Pau: Maff Pah-au: Sorry!
  • Didi: Dee-dee: Older sister
  • Bahini: Ba-hee-nee: Younger sister
  • Dai: Daa-i: Older brother
  • Bhai: Vaa-i: Younger brother

Things you should do and Avoid to retract Nepalese culture.

Always greet the eldest or the most senior person first with a Namaste. It can be done by pressing the palms together in front of the chest and with a slight bow. Handshaking is also expected and may be done after the traditional greeting. However, even if it is familiar among men and women to shake hands, keep in mind that everyone would not be comfortable touching the contrary gender.

Do not proceed for a hug or a kiss unless you know the person very well. It is best to address individuals using honorifics like dai (elder male), didi (elderly female), bhai (younger male), bahini (younger female), even when there is no actual blood relation.

Biggest Festivals In Nepal

Nepal’s festivals are just as captivating as everything else. Nepal has several festivals based around the five major religions: Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam, Christianity, and Jainism.

It is a country full of festivals. Witnessing one would be an experience of a lifetime as Nepal has a unique set of festivals that is secular and diverse. Here is a list of festivals according to the months so that you can plan your visit accordingly.

Festivals range from playing with colors in Holi to lighting lamps and colorful lights in Tihar to pulling a huge chariot. Nepal’s fantastic festivals are an experience worth experiencing.


1. New Year: New Year’s Day is the first day of the year on the Gregorian calendar, celebrated annually on January 1. Nepal’s cities especially commemorate the day with loved ones by going to parties and street festivals.

2. Yomari Purnima: Yomari Purnima is a celebration that takes place during the full moon day of December/January. Yomari Purnima is a Newari festival where Yomari (steamed rice flour dumpling with sweet fillings of chaku and khuwa) is made. It is also a special day for a family to get together and share their happiness and blessings.

3. Maghe Sankranti: The Maghe Sankranti is a Nepali festival celebrated on the first day of the Hindu lunar calendar. The festival marks the beginning of the spring season. Nepalese celebrate the Maghe Sankranti festival by eating sweet potato, sesame seed candy, chaku, yam, and ghee.


4. Sonam Lhosar: Lhosar means New Year or beginning of a new era. Likewise, Sonam Lhosar is the New Year of the Tamang tribe. The festival is celebrated with the great pump by going to monasteries, worshiping, and gathering at Tudikhel. There are music and dancing.


5. Maha Shivaratri: Mahashivaratri is a Hindu festival celebrated every year in honor of Lord Shiva.
It is an important day for Shiva devotees. It is celebrated all over Nepal. Temples like Pashupatinath, Doleshwor Mahadev, and Gokarna Mahadev are flooded with pilgrims. The evening aarti and hymns are a wonderful experience. Devotees believe that worshipping Lord Shiva on this auspicious day fulfills one’s desires and confers blessings.

6. Holi (Fagu Purnima): Holi, the festival of color, is a Hindu festival that is celebrated in the spring. It’s one of the most popular festivals in Nepal, and it involves throwing colored powder at people. Those who go to major cities like Kathmandu, Pokhara, and Butwal are often treated to lavish colors, music, and celebration displays.


7. Bisket Jatra: Bisket Jatra marks the start of the Nepali New Year and is celebrated in Bhaktapur. It is an annual event that includes a huge chariot carrying the image of the god Bhairab being pulled by a large number of devotees to Khalna Tole (a place in Kathmandu)


8. Buddha Jayanti: Buddha Jayanti is the most important Buddhist festival in Nepal and other parts of the world. This festival celebrates Buddha’s birth, enlightenment, and death. The celebration is marked by visiting monasteries and stupas, worshipping, and distributing donations.


9. Rato Machhendranath: The festival of the god Rato Machhendranath (Avalokiteshvara in Vajrayana Buddhism) is the longest chariot festival in Nepal. Devotees perform Bhajan singing, dancing, and praying. The festival starts at the beginning of the monsoon so that the rain and grand celebration take place together. According to the lunar calendar, the chariot festival of Machhendranath is held in Kathmandu, Patan, and Bhaktapur in June.

10. National Dhan Diwas: Dhan Diwas is a day to celebrate the harvest. It is also an excellent time to thank the gods for providing us with food and nourishment. The day is celebrated by cooking traditional dishes and distributing food to the poor and needy. People eat curd and beaten rice as a part of the tradition.


11. Janai Purnima: Janai Purnima is a Hindu festival that consists of Hindu men renewing their Janais and worshipping Lord Shiva. Janai is the sacred thread that Hindu men wear on the upper part of the body. It holds a high religious and cultural importance.
Families get together and eat Kwanti and lentils.

13. Gai Jatra (Kathmandu): Gai Jatra is celebrated to commemorate the death of loved ones. The festival is celebrated with dancing, singing, and people dressed in costumes as cows parading on the streets. It is an incredible sight to see.


14. Teej: Women in Nepal celebrate the Teej festival. According to the Hindu religion, Teej is dedicated to Goddess Parvati and her husband, Lord Shiva, in honor of their love. It is the festival where married women worship the Goddess for the longevity of their husbands. The festival has lots of women dancing in red saris and eating Darr.


15. Fulpati: Fulpati is a festival celebrated to increase the family’s wealth, fertility, and prosperity for its recipients. Families worship Goddess Durga. A special army parade is held in Tudikhel, Kathmandu, which the President, Prime Ministers, and other representatives of the country attend.

16. Dashain: Dashain is the biggest Hindu festival in Nepal in which people worship Goddess Durga, honor their ancestors, and fast. The main rituals include putting on a red tika, giving dakshina (money), gifts and feasting. The festival includes animal sacrifices. It is then cooked for the meal. Children, as well as adults, play on swings. The government gives a week-long holiday to all the workers, and most people go to their hometowns, leaving Kathmandu empty.


17. Deepawali: Deepawali is the most important festival for Hindus. It celebrates the victory of light over darkness. On this day, people decorate their houses with diyas (small oil lamps) and colorful electric lights. Nepal looks mesmerizing during this time. They worship Goddess Laxmi (the god of wealth) and Lord Ganesh (her son, who also symbolizes wealth) for prosperity. People play ‘deusi-bhailo’ and sing and dance around the neighborhood.

18. Mani Rimdu: Mani Rimdu is a Buddhist festival celebrated mainly by the people in the Himalayan region of Nepal. It is a 19-day festival that commemorates the founding of Buddhism by Guru Rinpoche. The monks and the Sherpas visit the monasteries and enjoy the plays, masked dances, hymns, and feast.


19. Christmas: Christmas is celebrated on December 25 all over the world to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ. In Nepal, it is celebrated by Christians and other communities too. People visit the church and greet each other. The Christmas trees are lit in most of the commercial centers. There are also many Christmas-themed parties held in most restaurants and clubs in Kathmandu and Pokhara.

20. Pokhara Street Festival: Pokhara Street Festival is the largest annual festival in Nepal, held at Lakeside’s main road, Pokhara. The festival starts on December 28 and ends on January 1. It is a fun event enjoyed by tourists and locals where they are entertained by concerts, food, parade, games, and more.

Best To-do Activities in Nepal

Annapurna Circuit Trek

One of the most popular treks that will take you through Nepal’s dramatic landscapes ranging from subtropical forests, paddy fields, a high mountain pass, icefalls, and the world’s deepest river gorge, is the Annapurna Circuit Trek. The 14-day trek rewards every trekker with breathtaking views of Nepal’s mountain peaks like the Annapurna II, Annapurna III, Lamjung Kailash, and Dhaulagiri few. The trail will also take you to the best sightseeing spot, Poon Hill, where you will see the Himalayas’ best views.

With the fantastic landscapes and sceneries, the trail also passes by some beautiful villages like Braga, Manang, Jomsom, and Marpha. The Annapurna Circuit trek takes you to the famous Hindu-Buddhist pilgrimage site at Muktinath. The walk through the trails will let you meet people of various cultures, which in turn will be an excellent opportunity to learn about the local’s distinguishing cultures and traditions.

Heritage Sites In Kathmandu

Kathmandu—Nepal’s capital—is the heart of history, art, and the economy. It’s a city with a lot of beautiful history, from monarchies to myths and legends about demons and gods. It falls in Nepal’s central region and is a nation’s political, cultural, and economic hub.

It is a multicultural city, home to thousands of people of multi-ethnicity. All year-round, you’ll find many religious and cultural events in Kathmandu. Kathmandu indeed provides visitors a complete experience, with numerous monuments, heritage sites, and places suitable for outdoor adventure.

The city has Nepal’s finest hotels, restaurants, and transportation services.

Patan Durbar Square

The Patan Durbar Square is one of the smallest and the most enchanting of the three Durbar Squares. It is one of the better-managed historical sites and regarded as the marvel of Newar architecture. The Durbar Square boasts several temples in its area, each with exquisite carvings.

The temples and palaces decorated with red-brick tiles add to the antique beauty of this square. Formerly a residence for the Royal family, the palace was turned into a museum. It contains collections from Nepal’s rich cultural past.

It is a great spot to see the local’s traditional craftwork. There are several temples within the complex, each adorned with exquisite carvings.

Kathmandu Durbar Square

Kathmandu Durbar Square, also known as Basantapur Durbar Kshetra, or Hanuman Dhoka, was once the Malla and Shah Kings’ palace. They ruled over the city many decades ago. It was the place where the Shah rulers were crowned.

There are numerous Hindu and Buddhist shrines, as well as beautiful courtyards. There are also sculptures and traditional Newar wood carvings that date back to the 16th century. The best thing about Kathmandu Durbar Square is that it is only 5 minutes away from Thamel.

Everest Base Camp

Everest Base Camp Trek is every trekker’s dream. Not only is it a walk to the highest base camp in the world, but it also offers an adventure amidst the jaw-dropping views of the snow-covered mountains, icefalls, and quaint villages. The trek goes through ancient Buddhist monasteries at the Sherpa villages like Namche, Tengboche, Pangboche, and Lobuche.

Trekkers also get up close to the culture and lifestyle of the locals and interact with them. When you gaze at the panoramic views of the Himalayas from Kala Patthar, you will surely be in awe. An adventurer who desires a lifetime experience will enjoy the Everest Base Camp Trek.

Chitwan Jungle Safari

Home to sloping, subtropical hills, Chitwan National Park is a vast and beautiful place. It is home to the largest number of Royal Bengal Tigers and Giant Asian Elephants. It is also a great place to spot rhinos. And doing that on an Elephant Safari is the number one reason why most visitors come here.

The park provides a safe-haven for these majestic creatures. Visitors come from all over the world to see this rare sight. You can go on a jungle safari and elephant baths. In the evening, Tharu dance from the local tribes will keep you entertained.

The Lake City Vibe- Pokhara

Pokhara is a valley with beautiful lakes. It is a yogi’s zen, adrenaline junkie’s playground, and a base camp to the Annapurna Circuit itself. This city thrives on tourism, with tourists coming from every part of the country and the world.

Pokhara valley is booming with religious sites, thrilling adventures, souvenir markets, best sightseeing spots, wellness retreats, luxury hotels, to hostels. You name it; Pokhara has it all. While you are here, you need to take a boat ride or try the Stand Up Paddling (SUP) in Phewa lake, visit the World Peace Pagoda and explore the three caves in Pokhara: Devi’s Fall, Gupteshwor Mahadev, and the Bat Cave.

For more adventure, go bungee jumping, paragliding, or trek the Annapurna Circuit. Hiring a cycle and exploring the lake city is just another fantastic way to enjoy your time in Pokhara.

Lumbini- Birthplace of Buddha

Lumbini is a pilgrim site, home to one of history’s most respected figures, Gautam Buddha. Visitors can find a spot and read a book on Buddhism and relax. Listen to the legends and look at historical places and sculptures.

Boudhanath Stupa

Boudhanath Stupa, known to be the largest stupa in existence, is a Buddhist pilgrimage site listed as the UNESCO World Heritage Site. Walk around the stupa, light a butter lamp, and spin the prayer wheels as you go. Boudhanath is a great place to witness authentic Buddhism culture.

White-water Rafting

Nepal has emerged as a center for white-water rafting in Asia because of its rich water resources. White-water rafting in Nepal offers a chance to experience the country’s beautiful scenery and dynamic rivers.

The Upper Seti river is one of the best rafting spots. You can fuel your wild inner spirit with non-stop Class III and Class IV rapids. The Gorkha River, Sun Kosi River, Seti River, and Kali Gandaki River are the largest rivers in Asia that boast spectacular rapids.

Paddle Nepal and Saara Tourism Nepal are some of the best companies that provide an excellent action-packed package suitable for families with children too.


The mystical temple at Swayambhunath is a popular tourist destination in Nepal. It’s on a hilltop and shows the views of the whole Kathmandu valley. It offers a stunning juxtaposition of ancient spirituality with modernity. It is a Buddhist sacred site where Buddhists can come to pray and be reminded to revere all living beings.


Momo is a culinary specialty of Nepal and Tibet. The dish consists of steamed flour dough wrapped around a filling, usually consisting of minced meat or vegetables. You can enjoy them in fancy restaurants, street stalls even while you are on a trek. It is people’s favorite and will surely be yours too.

Bungee Jump

Nepal is a perfect location for those seeking to bungee jump. The Bungee at The Last Resort, located in Bhote Koshi river gorge between Tibetan and Nepali borders, is the highest bungee bridge in the world, with jumps from other bridges (nearer to Kathmandu) reaching heights of over 200 meters. Jumping from these heights allows you to fall at speeds of up to 250 km/h before your rope starts limiting your velocity.
One thing that stands out about jumping in Nepal is that they usually require a qualified instructor who will accompany you and tie your harness and make sure everything is safe during the whole process.


Want to experience the adrenaline rush of a lifetime? Visit Nepal, and zipline your heart out! Nepal is home to an unparalleled number of ziplines. Whether you’re looking for a safe treetop adventure or a death-defying cliffside descent, there is a zipline for that. With sheer drops and stunning mountain views, this pastime will have you reaching new heights. So make sure you pack your courage and prepare yourself for one exhilarating ride!


Interested in experiencing “bird’s eye” views of the Himalayas? Then paragliding might be right up your alley. Pokhara is a popular destination for paragliding due to its proximity to the Annapurna range and Dhaulagiri range. You can enjoy views of those two mountain ranges, as well as other Himalayan peaks!

Mountain Biking

The Himalayas boast some of the most challenging mountain biking in the world. Mountain-biking in Nepal lets you hit winding trails that are perfect for beginners or seasoned vets alike. Courses range from intermediate-level excursions on well-groomed, single-track trails to extreme rides that weave through remote villages, narrow cliffside trails, and steep switchbacks. You’ll find plenty of scenic vistas and incredible views- not to mention great shopping and four seasons’ worth of activities.
Some of the best places to mountain bike in Nepal are Kathmandu valley, Pokhara, Annapurna Circuit, Mustang, and the lower Everest region.

Wildlife of Bardia National Park

Bardia National Park is another excellent option for people interested in wildlife.
With an area of 765 square kilometers, the park is home to species typical of the Terai region, including one-horned rhinoceros, tigers, elephants, sloth bears, crocodiles, and over 407 bird species.
The best way to explore Bardia is to visit it with a wildlife tour operator to see the sanctuary’s natural beauty and its rich biodiversity. You can either walk or drive to see the animals. To get a bird’s eye view of this park, take a ride on the elephant’s back.

Gosaikunda Lake

At some point in their lives, many trekkers have had a desire to visit Gosaikunda Lake. The reason, it is one of Nepal’s most beautiful lakes and a place for those who are looking for just a suitable adventure trek.
The Gosaikunda Lake lies in the Langtang National Park at an elevation of 4,380 meters in the Rasuwa district.
The trek takes you through one of Nepal’s most beautiful areas, full of rice terraces, vegetation, and villages scattered throughout it. Trekking through this route provides an excellent opportunity to view the nation’s cultural diversity and its ethnic diversity.
CHAPTER 4: Need to know
National Language: Nepali

Winter Season: December – February

Coldest yet best time for sightseeing as the skies are clear and there is no rainfall. The days are warm, but the temperature drops at night. Winter is the best time for jungle walks and safari expeditions.

What to Wear?
Fleece jacket, raincoat, windproof jacket, sweaters, woolen gloves, thermal tops and pants, thermal socks, caps.

Spring Season: March-May

It is one of the best seasons to travel in Nepal as the weather is stable. The days are long and clear, making them ideal for hiking, trekking, and peak climbing. Spring is also the best season to explore wildlife in Chitwan and Bardia.

What to Wear?

Cotton and linen clothes, dri-fit tops, windproof jacket, thermal tops and pants (just in case), scarf, trousers, sweatpants, hat.

Summer + Monsoon Season: June – August
The monsoon downpour makes the trail muddy, slippery, and full of leeches. There is a risk of landslides, avalanches due to which the highways may be closed, and flight delays/cancellations are more prominent. Accommodation prices have a good value during this time.

What to Wear?
Cotton and dri-fit t-shirts, raincoat, windproof jacket, sandals/flip-flops, loose trousers, flowy skirts (for females).

Autumn Season (High season): September – November

Autumn is the best season as it rewards you with clear skies and fresh air due to monsoon rains. The walk will be pleasant as you will see breathtaking landscape views. Also, it is the time when the most prominent festivals like Dashain and Tihar are happening in the country, a perfect opportunity to learn about Nepal’s culture.

What to Wear?
Cardigan, cotton t-shirts, Pashmina shawls, windproof jacket, fleece jackets, trousers, sweatpants, warm socks, hat.

Less than $40 per person
Accommodation in budget hotels and hostels ($5 – $20)
Dinner/Breakfast in trekking lodges ($10 – $12)
Trekking Porter / Guide ($13 / $20 per day)
Mid-Range ($40 – $100) per person
Camping trek: $50 – $80
Meal: $7 – $10
Accommodation in hotels: $20 – $80
High Range ($100+) per person
Five-star hotels in Kathmandu? Pokhara:$150 – $250
Mountain Flight: $171


You can easily change your currency in money exchange centers in the Tribhuvan International Airport, Kathmandu, on arrival. There are plenty of ATMs in Kathmandu, Pokhara, and other Kathmandu cities from where you can withdraw money before commencing the trek.

Tourist visas are available at the airport upon arrival.
To get a visa at the airport, you need to present a passport with 6-months validity and a passport-sized photo.
There are three types of visas to choose from like a 15-day visa ($30), a 30-day visa ($50), and a 90-day visa ($125). There will be electronic visa machines and staff to help you with the form proceedings.
In case you want to extend your stay in Nepal, you have to go to the Central Immigration Office and fill out the forms and pay. Extension for 15 days costs $45. You can extend your stay in Nepal up to 180 days per year in Nepal.
If you are a citizen of China or any other SAARC nations, you will receive a free visa. Citizens of Nigeria, Ghana, Swaziland, Somalia, Cameron, Iraq, Afghanistan, Palestine, and Liberia will have to obtain the before arriving in Kathmandu. It is best to contact your local Nepalese embassy before taking the flight to Kathmandu.

Sim Cards
You have two SIM Card options: Ncell and NTC, which you can readily get at the airport on arrival. You can also get these SIM Cards on Ncell centers and NTC branch offices.

Moving Around

Since Nepal has got only one international airport (Tribhuvan International Airport) in the capital city, Kathmandu, you will be primarily visiting this city.
To move around the country, you can have the following options:
Local Buses / Minibuses: These are an inexpensive way to travel around the country as they go pretty much everywhere. You only need to pay about $1 per hour till you reach your destination. However, traveling on a local bus will take ages to get to your destination as they wait till the bus seats are full, then they pick up and drop passengers along the way.
They also make stops for lunch. Another negative factor is that they play loud music non-stop for hours which can get annoying. But well, it will surely be an experience you won’t forget.
Tourist Bus: A tourist bus is a more comfortable and quick way to reach your destination. They are a bit expensive: $3 – $4, but undoubtedly faster.
Flight: Flying is the easiest and fastest way to reach your destination. However, it indeed is expensive. Traveling by flight shows the best sceneries of the country.
For example, One-way flight tickets for Everest Base Camp, starting from Kathmandu to Lukla, cost $160. Plus, Lukla Airport is listed as one of the dangerous airports in the world. An experience worth having, right?
It would be best to get around the country on tourist buses as they are more convenient. Local Buses are slow and congested.
Taxis are suitable for trips within a city.

Public transportation: Local bus, Micro-bus, Tempo (electric rickshaw), rickshaw
Hire: bicycle, scooter, bike, car
Online services: Tootle, Pathao
No train service
Taxi, local bus
Hire: bicycle, scooter, bike, car
Online service: Onver, Rhino ride
No train service
Public transportation: electric rickshaw, tuk-tuk, rickshaw
Hire: bicycle, electric rickshaw
No online service
No train service
Hire: jeep, bike
No online service
No train service
Public transportation: tanga, belgaadi (driven by an ox), tuk-tuk, taxi
Hire: cycle, jeep, car
No online service
No train service
Public transportation: bus, cycle, rickshaw, electric rickshaw, tempo.
Train service: Janakpur – Siraha
No online service
Public transportation: Bus, taxi, tuk-tuk,
Train service: Siliguri – Darjeeling (India)
Hire: taxi
No online service
Public transportation: bus, temp (electric rickshaw), taxi
Hire: taxi, private car
No online service
No train service
Public transportation (only till Salleri): bus, jeep, cars
On the trails: Yak, Hike
Air transport: Helicopter, flight at four airports (Kangeldanda, Lukla, Solu Dushkunda, Syangboche
No online service
No train service
Shuklaphanta National Park
Tourist bus and private cars only
No transportation. The roads have deteriorated.
Public transportation: bus, electric rickshaw
Hire: jeep
Train service: Raxaul – different parts of india
No online service
Public transportation: bus
Hire: Tourist bus, jeep
No train service
No online service
Koshi Tappu Wildlife Reserve
Hire: private vehicles like jeep, boat, and tourist bus. Public transportation is scarce.
No online service
No train service

How to get to Nepal

Tribhuvan International Airport
After you arrive at the airport, you can get a travel visa at immigration. You can get inside the terminal. If you have booked a hotel, some of them will even pick you up from the airport.
Sunauli (Indian Border)
If you want to travel to Kathmandu or Pokhara, take a direct bus from the Indian border. If you’re going to any other destination, you can take a rickshaw or a jeep to Bhairahawa and take a bus too.

Exchange Rates

Australia: AUD 1=Rs 90.43
Canada: CAD$1=Rs. 92.56
China: Y1=Rs. 18.10
Europe: Euro 1 put symbol=Rs. 140.08
Japan: Yen 1=Rs 1.08
India: Rupee 1=Rs 1.61
UK: Pound Sterling 1=Rs 162.67
US: US $1=Rs 117.18
*Check for current exchange rates.

Important Numbers
Country Code: +977
International Access Code: +00
Police: 100
Tourist Police: 4247041
Tourism Hotline: 4225709
Ambulance: 102
Fire: 101

Always carry
Face mask to beat air pollution.
Earplugs: to avoid noisy local buses, turbo sound of airplanes, and sometimes hotel rooms.
Lip Balm and sunscreen: while on treks.
Hiking boots: to avoid injuring your feet.
Padlock: to lock your bags on bus baggage racks.
LED Torch: incase of power-cuts and for nighttime trips to the washroom.
Insect Repellent: to fight off leeches and mosquitoes while trekking in the Terai region.
Swimming costume: For swimming, rafting, canyoning, rafting, and elephant washing.
Using reusable water bottles and water purification tablets: Stay hydrated, save money and be environmentally friendly.
Hand Sanitizer: to keep your hands clean to eat during trek or on-the-go.
CHAPTER 5: Lifestyle of regions
Terai Region
The Terai region is the most fertile area of Nepal. Due to the mild climate, it is densely populated with people. The terai population almost matches that of the rest of Nepal, which can be attributed to its rich agricultural land and high availability of water resources.
The majority live in a joint family and share everything from property to bedding. In such a scenario, some members are bound to work hard while others who are idle may depend on them for financial support. The eldest male of the family generally heads these families.
A few people live in nuclear families (two generations of a family living under one roof). The reason behind this is that joint families are usually financially stable. The average joint family has a net worth more than twice that of a nuclear family.
There is no average household size concerning caste as it again depends on their living circumstances and financial status.

Food of Terai Region

The food in the Terai region varies depending on the cultural background of the people in that region. People who live in villages eat what they grow, store, and hunt. Villagers also hunt fish, crocodiles, and some birds. Others hunt birds, deer, and wild boar. The villagers also use different kinds of fruits and vegetables from the forest for cooking.

Some people in the Terai region eat meat only on special occasions such as festivals or weddings. They believe that eating meat every day is bad for health.

Some people from villages in the Terai region eat fast food like burgers and pizzas from restaurants. Other villagers do not buy these products because they are expensive, and they believe that if people sell fast food items, they will lose the culture of eating locally grown vegetables.

Hilly Region

The Hilly region of Nepal is a high-altitude region with many streams, waterfalls, and valleys. Gosaikunda and Kathmandu valley are two of the most well-known places for trekkers to visit in this area.
The Hilly region of Nepal is a beautiful place with a green and pleasant environment. It has a unique culture and lifestyle. The people of the area are friendly and helpful.
The cultural life of the hilly region of Nepal has both religion-based festivals and secular festivals. Some religious festivals are Dashain, Tihar, and Teej, while secular celebrations include Gai Jatra, New year’s day, etc.

Food of Hilly Region
Most people in the hilly region have Dal-Bhat as a staple food. The Newars, Tamangs, Gurungs, and Rai people have their cuisines. Other Nepalese staples of the hilly region include flatbread such as the Nepali naan, roti, lassi, a rice-based beer called “raksi” or “chyaang,” and “tangycha.”
Most people eat at restaurants and cafes as the region has numerous local and international restaurant chains. Momo, a steamed dumpling filled with meat or vegetables and served with soup, is an item that is most in-demand in the region and the country.
Himalayan Region
People living in this region have a lifestyle that is different from any other in the country. The region is extremely cold, dry, and windy. The southern part of the Himalayan region is warmer. The inhabitants, mostly Sherpas, Bhotiyas, and Thakalis, live in a house made up of stone and clay or wood as transportation in this region is not accessible and tends to be very expensive.
Transportation and communication have not developed in this region of the country due to the problematic geographical condition.
The tribes follow Buddhism and celebrate Lhosar with a great pump. They are quite strong and healthy. They earn their livelihood either through animal husbandry or by owning a treehouse.
Food of Himalayan Region
The most common foods in this region are Dhindo (pudding-like food made from maize/millet), Tibetan bread, bread, and meat items. They drink a particular type of tea made from tea leaves, salt, and ghee. They mostly have to import other kinds of food items from the lower regions.

Nepal- a country of the Himalayas, stunning views, diverse culture, and jam-packed adventures-is regarded as one of the world’s most beautiful countries. The grandeur of the mountains and the dramatic landscapes of Nepal lures thousands of trekkers worldwide.
There are many trekking routes in different parts of the country, each with its own specialty, and trekking in at least one of the climbing routes is every traveler’s dream.

Trekking in Nepal is accessible, affordable, and unforgettable. It can be a bit daunting to choose from many options, each showing its own specialties. But worry not, this chapter will give you all the ideas to plan the perfect trekking trip in Nepal.

BEST CULTURAL TREK: Upper Mustang Trek at Muktinath
BEST SHORT TREK: Langtang Valley Trek
BEST MEDIUM TREK: Annapurna Sanctuary Trek
BEST WINTER TREK: Ghorepani Trek

Nepal has four seasons: Spring (March-May), Summer (June – August), Autumn (September – November), and Winter (December – February). Of these four, Spring and Autumn are the peak trekking seasons.
Trekking during the Spring and Autumn season gives the best experience due to the excellent weather and mild temperature that is comfortable for walking. The clear skies have high visibility that makes sightseeing splendid.
Summer is considered the worst time to go trekking as not only is it hot, but the season also invites the monsoon rain, which makes the trails slippery.
Winter is also a tough time to go for a trek as it is unbearably cold in the mountains, due to which several guest houses will be closed.
There are more than a hundred trekking routes in Nepal. Nepal’s best treks are grouped by region, which lets you visit a couple of places in one trip.
The regions are:
Everest Region
Annapurna Region
Mustang Region
Western Nepal Region
Eastern Nepal Region
Langtang Region
Manaslu Region
Helambu Region

The most popular ones are Everest and Annapurna Sanctuary regions as they have the best scenery and infrastructure. You can do treks in these regions independently.
If you want a longer route, the Great Himalayan trek (Nepal side) is an excellent choice as it crosses the country from east to west.

The type of trekking you want depends on your budget, season, route, and what kind of activity you wanted to do—some like trekking independently without a guide or porter, while some like guided tours with a group.
With guide: If you do not have the time to plan the whole trek on your own, then booking a package with the company would be a great deal. All you need to do is give a date. Everything will be pre-handled from permits, food, hotels, pick up and drop to airport facilities, guides, and porters, and you will have guidance and safety throughout the trek.
Plus, you will get local information on culture too. In the end, who knows they might even turn out to be your closest pen friend in the future?
Group guided tour: It is the kind of tour where you will be touring with two or more than two people, mostly friends and family, in the presence of a guide.Sometimes, the group members can be someone who you are seeing for the first time.
Solo guided tour: If you do not like walking with people, you can just have a guide or a porter through an agency. The guide would cost $25- $30 per day while porters charge $10 – $15. These cover food and shelter. Make sure the guide can speak English fluently.
Independent: If you are an experienced hiker and are confident about the route, then you can do an independent trek, where you will be unguided. It is a cheaper option plus; you can modify it according to your schedule. You have to manage everything on your own, even hiring a porter to carry your baggage.
You can do most of Nepal’s popular routes like Everest Base Camp, Annapurna Sanctuary, and Poon Hill treks without a guide.
In places like these, routes are marked, and there are plenty of guesthouses and shops en route. However, there are also many regions where you are restricted to trek without a guide, for example, Upper Mustang.
If you are opting to hike independently, make sure to carry a reliable map and guidebooks.

You can find ATMs in most cities and towns of Nepal. The ATMs will charge NPR 300 – NPR 400 (average $3 – $4) per transaction on the amount of money you withdraw.
You can withdraw NPR 35,000 ($ 301.33) per transaction from ATMs of Nabil Bank, while other banks allow you to withdraw NPR 15,000 to NPR 20,000 ($129.14 – $172.19).
It is best to carry enough cash with you before going on a trek as there might be no ATMs en route, or sometimes even if they have an ATM, there might be no cash. It is favorable to stay prepared beforehand.
You can find ATMs only on the Everest Base Camp trek in Lukla and Namche Bazar.

Planning the Budget
While you are trekking; lodges, cafes, and shops do not accept credit cards. You need cash on hand for mini expenditures such as snacks, tea, wifi, emergency kits, souvenirs, and more on the trail.
It would be best if you also had cash to charge your electric devices in tea houses, even though some will let you do it for free. Tea houses charge $2 – $5 to charge your battery. It costs more in remote areas.
Most of the major expenses like transportation, accommodation, and food will be covered by the agency. However, if you are trekking independently, you can get through the day at around $30.
Note: Prices increase with altitude.

The cost of trekking depends on the trekking destination and how you want to do it (with a guide: in a group or solo, or independent).
An amount of $25 – $30 per day would be enough for your daily expenses, including food and accommodation. If you hire a guide or a porter, you need an additional $30 per day, depending on the number of people.
You can share one guide for two trekkers. You can share a porter between several trekkers as long as the luggage does not exceed the weight of 15 kgs. This way, you can save on the costs of guides and porters.
Be sure not to splurge on coffees and cakes en route. Take extra money for emergency purposes that may occur due to snowfalls, flight cancellations, or sickness.
The best way to manage the cost of trekking without the hassle is by trekking with an agency. The agency will handle your overall expenses in a package that you will purchase from them.
Treks like Everest Base Camp and Upper Mustang are expensive. Everest Base Camp is costly due to higher accommodation prices and special permits whereas, Upper Mustang has a compulsion of special permits.
How to save money on treks?
Buy your water filtration bottle or purification pill to save money on water. IF you buy 4-5 bottles of mineral water every day, you will be spending $40 – $50 on the water itself.
Buy tea bags/ instant coffee/ energy drinks for the trek instead of buying them for more amount on the trail.
Bring fruit jam or peanut butter and eat it with local bread (chapati/roti) as a breakfast or snack while on the trek.
Avoid drinking alcohol. They are expensive in Nepal, especially at high altitudes.

Trekking permits are necessary to trek in restricted areas. If you are touring with a travel agency, they will obtain the permits for you. If you are trekking independently, you need to get the specific permits required by the area you are traveling in.
Types of Permits:
Trekking Information Management System (TIMS): NPR 2000/ $17 per trekker
Khumbu Rural Municipality Permit: You can get this permit in Lukla at $18.If you are trekking the area for more than four weeks, you need to pay NPR 2500/ $21.27.
Sagarmatha National Park Entry Permit: You can obtain it at Monjo Office for $30 + 13% VAT
Some trekking regions in Nepal, namely Manaslu, Tsum Valley, Upper Mustang, Dolpo, Nar Phu, Kanchenjunga, and Humla, require a restricted area permit to enter.

Kanchenjunga and Lower Dolpo
$10 per person per week
Upper Mustang and Upper Dolpo
$500 per person per week (10 days)
After 10 days, $50 per person per day

September-November: $70 per person per week. After 7 days, $10 per day
December-August: $50 per person per week. After 7 days, $7 per day
$50 per person per week
After 7 days, $7 per person per day
$10 per person per week
$10 per person per week
Solukhumbu (EBC)
$10 per person per week for 4 weeks
After 4 weeks, $20 per person per week.

The difficulty rating of a trek depends on the area you will be trekking at, its weather conditions, and your experiences and physical fitness.
Nepal has numerous trekking trails with different levels of difficulty. You should choose the one that fits your fitness level then start training before the trek.

Trekking in Nepal does not require technical factors like ropes, ice axes, and crampons. However, there are many long steep ascents and descents that are challenging, especially while trekking in higher elevations. You need to make rest stops and acclimatize between the trek.
Porters are there to carry your heavy gear so that you only have to take a lightweight backpack.

In Nepal, Trekking includes a fair share of walking in high elevations, and high altitudes lead to Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS).
AMS is caused by lower levels of oxygen and reduced air pressure in high altitudes. It comes in various forms and reflects different stages of it. People usually get the symptoms from 5000 feet above sea level.
The main symptoms of AMS are mild headache, difficulty breathing, tiredness, and dizziness.
Altitude Sickness can happen to anyone, be it youths or older adults. It is said that younger trekkers tend to get the AMS more often as they try to ascend faster by skipping acclimatization and resting stops.
Causes of Acute Mountain Sickness
Ascending quickly without taking rests in between or not acclimatizing.
Not drinking enough water (3-4 liters).
Not being used to higher altitudes due to being used to living below or at sea level.
Heart or lung disease.
If you do not take action as soon as you get the AMS symptoms, it will progress to High Altitude Pulmonary Edema (HAPE), where fluids accumulate in the lungs.
Prevention of Acute Mountain Sickness
Walk slow and make acclimatization stops en route.
Rest between hikes and drink plenty of fluid (water/tea/energy drink).
Carry Diamox tablets to prevent altitude sickness as soon as you get the symptoms.
Never push yourself when you start feeling sick or get any symptoms.

Purchasing travel insurance before trekking in Nepal is a must. Most of the trekking destinations in Nepal are in remote areas and on high altitudes.
Even if you are an experienced trekker, accidents may occur anytime when you are in the mountains. You may need an emergency evacuation by helicopter, which can get a bit expensive (around $5000). You definitely do not want to pay it from your pocket.
When buying a travel insurance policy, make sure to buy a plan covering high altitude trekking, helicopter evacuation, and hospitalization. You can also find insurance companies that provide coverage on domestic and international flight cancellations and stolen baggage.
It is compulsory to have travel insurance while trekking inside Nepal’s national parks.
You will have to provide the travel insurance policy to your travel agency so that they can use it in case of an emergency. You need to fill in your insurance details when you are applying for your trekking permits.
Accommodations are available, and their prices depend upon region and season. Most are available for cheap; however, the services are basic.
Guesthouses en route the trek charge low for accommodation because the owners expect to get the income from food and drinks. It is compulsory to eat at your guesthouses.
In popular regions like Everest and Annapurna, the accommodation has good infrastructure and facilities like hot showers, wifi, and charging spots. Sometimes they are complementary to the room; other times, you need to pay for the services.
Some have western flush toilets, while most have a standard squat toilet.
Rooms charge $4- $5 per person.
You will be eating at teahouses en route. The food will be simple but filling to get through the day.
The food menu is almost the same everywhere. However, the prices will increase as you move further away from cities or to higher elevations. This is because of the lack of transportation to deliver supplies due to the remoteness of the area.
It is best to buy snacks while you are in Kathmandu or any city area.
When you book a trip with a trekking agency, you will be given two options:
I. Prepay for the total food costs during the trek.
II. Or, bring money and pay for meals as you go.
It is best to choose the first option as you do not have to hassle with money and worry about the insufficient budget.
(Remember: you need to pay in Nepalese rupees).
The most common dishes in most tea houses are dal bhat (rice with dal and curry), chapati, Tibetan bread, momo (dumplings), pasta, soups, pizzas, and apple pies.
On popular treks like Everest Base Camp and Annapurna Sanctuary, you get more options on the menu. You can get Indian cuisine, Nepalese cuisine, Chinese as well as western cuisine. You can find bakeries and coffee shops where you can have a quick bite.
If you are vegan/vegetarian, inform your tour guide pre-hand.
While trekking, it is essential to drink at least 1-2 liters of water every day. Staying hydrated is vital while hiking in higher elevations.
Water is accessible, but you cannot drink it without purifying it. Even the locals drink bottled water in Nepal. You can get bottled mineral water en route; however, it can get expensive as you go higher up the trails ($1 – $2 per 1 liter of a bottle). Plus, bottled water contributes to pollution as all these bottles are likely to be thrown away in the mountains.
The best idea to drink water without breaking the bank is by using a water bottle with a filtration system. LifeStraw bottles are popular among trekkers.
You can also use chlorine tablets to purify your water. However, the water may taste like a swimming pool’s water.
Other options are water treatment pills, UV sterilizers like SteriPEN, and water filters. You can also order pots of hot tea and store them in your thermos if it is chilly and you want to stay hydrated.

You may be surprised to know that it is easy to stay connected while trekking in Nepal. Most of the popular routes have tea houses that provide wifi services at a charge per hour. The wifi speed and functionality are slow, but at least it works! You can get a prepaid wifi card in the Everest region called the Everest Link Card. It costs $3 for 100 MB.
Annapurna Circuit charges a one-time fee of $3-$5 for wifi access at the teahouse. Everest Base Camp charges $1 per hour. Some provide free wifi access.
You can also get local SIM cards. While choosing to buy a SIM card in Kathmandu, you will get two options: Ncell and Nepal Telecom (NTC). The SIM cards are readily available in the international airport.
However, you will not be able to remain connected throughout the trek. If you are trekking in the Annapurna region, you should buy NTC’s SIM card to have better connectivity, whereas Ncell is best in the Everest region.
In areas like Manaslu, Tsum Valley, and Dolpo, there is little to no coverage.
Pack all your necessities according to the season that you will be traveling to Nepal. Trekking in Nepal means trekking in high altitudes. It can get freezing at night even though days will be clear and sunny.
Make sure to wear layers and bring a quality fleece and an outer shell waterproof jacket.
Here is the list of everything you need to pack while going on a trek:
Thermal tops and trousers
Woolen gloves
Caps / Hats
Wind / Waterproof jacket
Down Jacket
Trekking boots
Camp shoes
Trekking Equipment
Rucksack (30 litres) / Daypack
Trekking poles
Sleeping bag
Water bottle / Hydration bottle
Tent (optional)
Toothbrush and Toothpaste
Mouth wash
Wet wipes / Napkins / Toilet paper
Sanitary pads (for female)
Lip balm
Electrical Equipment
Mobile phone
Power bank
Extra batteries
Electric extension cord
Medical Emergency Kits
Diamox Tablets (for altitude sickness)
Throat Lozenges
Electrolyte powder
Water purifying tablets
Prescribed medications (if any)

It is best to buy essential trekking gear like hiking shoes and backpacks in your home country before your trek to get used to walking with them.
But if you want to buy it in Nepal, opt to buy one from the branded shops. Kathmandu and Pokhara are two cities with hundreds of shops to buy trekking gear and equipment, both real and fake.
You can get gears at a relatively lower price than in your homeland. You can get brands like North Face, Mountain Hardware, SONAM, and more.
Tridevi Sadak Street in Thamel, Kathmandu, has most of the brand shops.

Guides and porters are plenty in Nepal, and you can get them at competitive prices. On average, a guide charges $25 – $30 per day while porters will take $10 – $15 per day.
Guides are there to help you with information, logistics, and safety on your trek. They manage accommodation, food, routes, and security on the trail. While hiring one, make sure that they can speak fluent English as they have a significant role in making your trek successful.
You need to make sure that he has an excellent communication ability, knowledge about routes and culture, and has a good source of information on local culture, customs, and festivals.
Porters are men who carry heavy gear so that you can carry lightweight backpacks. They help ease the trekking difficulty. Porters are especially useful for beginners and older trekkers.
Make sure to keep the baggage weight to a minimum.
In the end, tip the guides and porters in person. Guides and porters carry out challenging jobs to make your trip a success and get very low compensation for it. It is best if you tip at least 15% of the total you paid for your service.
Make it clear from the beginning what your requirements and limitations are when you are hiring them.
You are morally responsible for the welfare of the porters you employ. You need to contribute if the porters die or get injured. Please do not leave them to fend for themselves.
Ensure your porters and guides have the emergency medical treatment and an insurance policy as you.
Ensure your guides and porters are wearing proper clothing for the altitude they tend to trek.
If you are trekking through an agency, ensure the wellbeing of the porters hired by them.
If you see any type of porters abuse, inform the International Porter Protection Group (

Nepal is one of the best countries to trek. It has hundreds of trekking agencies in Kathmandu, providing excellent trips around Nepal.
You can research online (for example, Tripadvisor) to choose the best company to help you plan a trek. After you select a travel agency, they will prepare a trek for you in advance.
Or, you can fly to Kathmandu and plan in person. Planning the trek personally gives you more flexibility and a chance to know your guides better.
It is relatively easy to find guidebooks and maps to your specific destination in the capital city, Kathmandu. Thamel- the tourist hub in Kathmandu, has lots of bookstores with lots of books with updated resources targeted towards trekkers.
One of the highly recommended trip planning and research books is “Trekking in the Nepal Himalayas’. It has helpful information about the essentials of popular trails as well as some less popular ones. It gives general advice about traveling to Nepal.
You need to carry a detailed map of your trek as you may need it for navigation. Maps and guidebooks also help you to know the challenges and highlights that lie ahead on the trail.
Trekking in Nepal includes walking through remote areas with no medical stops in between. It is imperative to take precautions before hitting the trails.
Here are some of the trekking safety stops that you will need in Nepal:
Learn about Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS) and its symptoms. Acclimatize and stay hydrated throughout the trek, especially when you reach higher altitudes.
As much as independent treks can be done, it is best not to trek alone. Hire a guide or make some hiking buddies.
Always get travel insurance before trekking in Nepal. You may need emergency medical help or any support, which can get pricey.
Pay attention to weather conditions, especially in the mountains. They can be dangerous if you are not prepared.
Only carry essentials and lightweight first aid kits.
Always keep your belongings and valuables close to you.
Carry enough water to stay hydrated throughout the day.
Keep/Leave a piece of paper containing your name, important phone numbers, emergency contact details, and detailed itinerary, which will help to find you in an emergency.
You may encounter mountain animals like yaks and donkeys on the trail. When you do, move away from any cliff and let them pass.
Always keep an eye on the trail.
Stay extra cautious around landslide and avalanche areas. Consult a guide or locals if it is safe or not. Do not force yourself into difficult situations.

Leave No Trace: Do not litter the trails. Keep the wrappers or any garbage in your backpack and dispose of dustbins only.
Do not buy plastic water bottles. It adds to your cost as well as non-degradable waste. Instead, carry a hydration bladder and use treatment pills, water filters, or UV sterilizer.
Stay in an eco-friendly lodge and avoid using firewood. It leads to deforestation.
Always walk on the left side of religious monuments and spin the prayer wheels clockwise.
Respect the rules of visiting temples by not wearing revealing clothes. Do not wear leather products. Always take your shoes off before entering temples.
Dress conservatively even while going on sightseeing, if you do not want to be a center of attraction, in the wrong way.
Ask permission before taking someone’s photo.
Say no to public displays of affection. It is not common in Nepal.
Trekking in Nepal means walking through diverse landscapes. With stunning views, you will also be challenged by steep uphill and downhill trails with rocky paths.
You need to be strong and agile. For this, you need to start training at least a month or two before you set out for the trek.
Here is a guide on how to prepare and get in shape for trekking.

Mountain Biking is an adventurous sports activity where you will be riding a mountain bike over rocky trails and hills at high altitudes. Mountain biking is famous in Nepal because the landscape is hilly, and there are many dirt roads. Nepal’s geography offers fantastic biking opportunities. Many of these trails are in remote areas, so they’re not crowded – and the beautiful landscapes will have you feeling like you’re on vacation, even though you’re working out. A typical mountain bike ride in Nepal lasts 4-8 hours and includes approximately 5-8 kilometers (3-5 miles) of riding uphill and then downhill. Mountain Biking in Nepal has been a growing trend for the past years. Trekking bikes are specially designed for mountainous terrains in Nepal.
The best time to mountain bike in Nepal is from October to November. The temperature during this season is pleasant, and there is little chance of rain. The trails are quieter, and the leaves haven’t yet fallen so that you can see the colors of the forests.
Biking is not recommended during winter. Even if you have the proper gear, it can be hard to avoid freezing fingers and toes. The trails are also much wetter during this season, so biking conditions are not ideal. Also, be careful when biking at night because there is no lighting on most of the roads.
Mountain bikes are widely available for rent in Kathmandu. There are several excellent biking tour companies based in Kathmandu. Biking tours typically take people to Pokhara, but other destinations such as Chitwan National Park are also possible.
If you would like to bike, you must make sure that the tour company you choose has quality mountain bikes. Some cycling tour companies will rent mountain bikes, but some of them don’t have much choice. For example, if you are planning on biking in and around Pokhara, then the area is relatively flat, and there aren’t many hills to climb to get anywhere.

So, the type of quality bike that they can rent is also going to be limited.
1. Alternative Nepal,
Ph: 01-4700170, $10 per day. $30/$50 for overnight trips with a guide.
2. Biking First,
Ph: 01-4701771, $35 for a day trip with a guide, bike, and tea.
3. Dawn Till Dusk: J.P. School Road, Thamel, Ktm,
Ph: 01-4700286
4. Path Finder Cycling: Thamel, Ktm,
Ph: 01-4700468

Kathmandu is the most popular biking destination. The government has built many multi-purpose trails that wind through the city and its outskirts and generally follow hills’ contours. You can see a great deal of Kathmandu’s historical sites on these trails, such as the Pashupatinath Temple and Boudhanath Stupa.

Mountain bikes are necessary to explore some of the trails around Pokhara. There are also several excellent biking tour groups based in Pokhara. You can bike to some of the lakes around Pokhara, including Sarangkot and Phewa Tal.

Many biking companies run tours from Chitwan National Park. Chitwan’s biking trails are similar to the trails around Pokhara, but you have a chance to see some of the wildlife.
One of the most alluring spots for bikers is the Everest region, where the Himalayan range offers some of the most challenging trails in the country.
Featuring the best of the country’s top trails, the Everest region is on the wish list of many mountain bikers. Travelers can join multi-day tours that start and finish in Kathmandu, hitting the most scenic and challenging trails in between. The tours include accommodation, meals, local guides, and equipment and are great for all rider levels.

Guided Mountain Biking Tours in Nepal are one of the best ways to explore the Himalayas. You will cover more ground on a guided bike tour and see more things than if you were hiking or biking independently. On a guided bike tour, you will have a comfortable place to sleep, you will not have to carry a tent or heavy gear, and you will have the peace of mind that comes with being in excellent hands with your mountain bike guide.
Group tours can cost $25-$35 for a simple day trip. For example, Kathmandu-Tinpiple, Tokha, and Budhanilkantha, or south to the Bungamati village. Downhill day trip with vehicle support costs $55 per person.
All-inclusive tours, which take a week and more, cost around $1000, including flights and guide costs. You can also organize your own under $500.

Transporting Your Bike on Mountain Biking Tour in Nepal
There are many mountain biking tours in Nepal, but not all of them are created equal. Some mountain bikers like them or their bikes being transported by van and then by a guide.
However, if you are an experienced rider, this type of tour might get boring after the twentieth time. It’s fun to be shuttled around on a van and have someone else carry your bike for you. However, if you are a mountain biker and want to experience less of this country’s touristy parts, you will have to take your bike with you.

The first thing that you must do is decide which type of tour you would like to take. Some tours allow you to ride for specific periods. There are tours where biking is just one part of an elaborate itinerary that also involves hiking, rafting, or visiting other Nepal attractions.

Professional mountain biking groups like Kathmandu-based E.P. Trekking have some of Nepal’s best guides who speak perfect English and know how to get you through some of Nepal’s most scenic and challenging terrain.

Road Conditions in Nepal
Biking in Nepal can be tricky with all the hills and mountains, but there are a few things to keep in mind when biking. If you are looking for a bike tour, you need to find someone who is experienced and bring a bike in good enough condition to handle the terrain. If you are traveling through Nepal for other reasons, it may be harder to find the right people for your needs.

When traveling through Nepal, there are a few things to watch out for. The dusty roads and the sharp rocks and mud found throughout the country are hard on bikes. It is also important to remember that there will be many uphill climbs when biking through this country, which means you will have to get off your bike at times so it doesn’t overheat or break down.
Biking around Nepal is fascinating, with all of the things to see. You can expect to see tea and cardamom plants along the way, along with many other crops. You can also expect to come across animals such as water buffalo and cows, goats, and sheep. Many little villages throughout Nepal will be different from one another due to the people who live in those areas. The climate for biking can be challenging at times because there are times when it is very hot and humid, and there are many rainy days throughout the year which can make traveling difficult during certain times of the year.

Safety points for mountain biking in Nepal
Some of the essential tips are staying hydrated, not going off the path, and being aware of weather conditions. These three simple steps will help you to have an adventure-filled mountain biking experience.
Always wear lots of sunscreens because there really isn’t much shade throughout Nepal.
It is important to remember that it will take a long time for your batteries to charge because there aren’t many electrical outlets.
Do not compete.
For eating, the best advice—as in any trekking situation—is “eat only when you are hungry and drink only when you are thirsty.” Always bring a water filter or purifier since the water in Nepal is not still drinkable.
“What appears flat from a distance can be surprisingly steep up close.” It is true of the trails in Nepal. Be sure to take your time and enjoy your surroundings.

Mountain Biking Trail Etiquette
If you are mountain biking on a trail and someone is walking past you, give them the right of way. Give them space to pass you without meeting your bike’s front wheel. Make sure they are aware of your presence with a friendly greeting such as, “Hello!”

If someone is walking their bike, move off the trail to let them pass. Give them enough space to pass so they don’t meet the front wheel of your bike when they walk past you.

If there is only one travel direction on a single track trail and it isn’t easy to pass someone, consider switching directions with your riding partner or friend. If it is easier to pass from the back of the group, then try to find a way to pass while single file.
If you are on a narrow trail with a thick brush on either side, move off the track and let others pass as well.

If you are riding your bike and a hiker wants to pass you, slow down so they can pass or stop completely if necessary. If there is only enough room for one person at a time, then let them go first.
If you are riding your bike and see a horse or other farm animal on the trail, either slow down and announce yourself or ride very slowly until the animal has passed.

If you are mountain biking on an easy trail but meet a bicyclist who is having trouble, slow down and let them pass. On challenging trails, slow or stop and wait for them to pass safely.
Most Popular Mountain Biking Routes
The Epic Annapurna circuit finish – Jomson to Tatopani
Kalimati – Pharping – Dukuchap – Champi – Kathmandu
Kathmandu-Tinpiple-Budhanilkantha via Tokha
Kathmandu – Tika Bhairav – Badi Khel – Godavari
Budhanilkantha-Chisapani-Nagarkot and back
Gokarna (day trip)
Nagarkot-Kathmandu downhill via Sankhu or Changu Narayan Temple: Day Trip/ Overnight Trip
Kathmandu to Chitwan National Park via Daman and Hetauda
Nagarkot-Dhulikhel-Panauti-Lakuri Bhanjyang-Sisneri: 3 days
Tibet border (four days)


You can buy a new bike, or get a second-hand one. If you want to save money, hiring a bike from rental shops would be the best.
Make sure to take it to a repair shop for a tune-up. A new bike can still have damage that needs repairing. The shop will also make sure the bike is safe and ready to ride.

Clothing for mountain biking
The mountain biking clothes you wear can mean the difference between a great experience and a terrible one. The key to finding the right outfit is picking clothing that will keep you cool, dry, and comfortable so you can spend more time riding and less time worrying about what you’re wearing.
The wrong clothing can lead to dehydration.
If you’re just out for a quick ride on your own, you don’t need much. A pair of comfortable shorts and a T-shirt over biking gear would be fine. But if you’re going to be riding with others or doing more intense riding, it will probably be a good idea to pack:
Bright clothing (especially in low light conditions) so that other riders can see you.
If you’re going to be riding in the colder months, a base layer is a good idea. It will keep you warm when it’s cold but help your body breathe when you stop and start riding again.
If it’s hot outside, wear a thin layer on top. It doesn’t matter if there’s another layer of clothing on top as long as the second piece is light and made of a material that will keep you cool.
Carry a map of where you are going in case something happens, and you need assistance
Extra water and food. If it’s sunny, you’ll lose water quickly merely from the sun warming up your body.

CHAPTER 8: WHITE WATER: Rafting and Kayaking
Nepal is one of the best rafting and kayaking destinations in the world. White-water rafting and kayaking in Nepal is an adventure that will have you on the edge of your seat, especially if you’re a first-timer. Many of Nepal’s rivers are relatively easy for beginners, with mild water and slow currents. Still, there are also several more advanced white-water rafting expeditions for those looking for something more adventurous. Nepal’s white-water rivers are fed by the 25 major Himalayan glaciers and are colder than rivers of similar difficulty in other countries. This makes for a distinctly different experience and is part of the reason why white-water rafting in Nepal is so popular among tourists and locals alike.

The best rivers for white-water rafting and kayaking in Nepal are the Seti, Trisuli, Bhotekoshi, and Karnali. Trisuli and Seti are Nepal’s most popular rafting destinations. They are both exceptionally scenic, so if you can’t get a spot on one of those rivers, you might want to consider the other two rivers in this list.

October-November is a high season to go for rafting and kayaking. You’ll need to book your rafting trips months ahead of time.
The Spring season (Late May to late June) is also a splendid time for white-water rafting and kayaking in Nepal with cooler river temperatures and smaller crowds.
Avoid going on monsoon (Late June- August) and September to early October as the river levels are extremely high and potentially dangerous.
The rivers are categorized by their speed, difficulty levels, and the possible dangers they pose.

Speed Category 1: Canoeing and kayaking possible only with life jackets. No swimming or walking possible.
Speed Category 2: 2-4 km/h, can be paddled without life jackets or guides.
Speed Category 3: 4-6 km/h, can be paddled with occasional help from guides in difficult spots (class II and III rapids).
Speed Category 4: 6-8 km/h, can be paddled with occasional help from guides in difficult spots (class IV and V rapids)
Class 1: Easy rapids, mostly flat water (class I). Canoeing and kayaking possible without guides or special equipment.
Class 2: Some maneuvering necessary to pass obstacles in swift water (class II). Canoeing and kayaking possible without guides or special equipment.
Class 3: Rapids with some obstacles, maneuvering, and teamwork necessary (class III). Canoeing and kayaking are possible only with a guide and special equipment.
Class 4: Small waterfalls, drops of 2-3 m (class IV). Canoeing and kayaking are only possible with a guide and special equipment.
Class 5: Large waterfalls or drops over 10 m high, narrow gorges with fast current (class V). Canoeing and kayaking are only possible under the supervision of experienced guides.

Dangers on the river:
River white-water is dangerous, and travelers should be aware of it. It is not unusual for people to die every year. The accidents may happen in flash floods, accidents on boats, or accidents in the water. Several safety rules need to be followed by everyone before going rafting in Nepal.

In the end, if you are confident and experienced enough to challenge any river, then you are heartily welcome to do so.

2 days

Upper Sun Koshi
2 days
2 days
2-3 days
Kali Gandaki
3 days
4 days
Sun Koshi
8-9 days
10 days
12 days

Many companies in Kathmandu and Pokhara that operate rafting and kayaking trips. Try to book with a well-established company with a good reputation.
Often the new companies are more enthusiastic and provide good service. But sometimes, small agencies sell trips for a commission without them knowing about the details they are selling.
It is wiser to ask a group that has recently returned from a trip and get their feedback on how groups are managed to and from the river, time spent paddling/rowing, food provided, camping type, hygiene, or whatever concerns you.
Trips usually cost $50-$100 a day, depending on the standard of service and the number in a group on a trip, and the type of river you will carry out the activity in.

For more information on the lists of rafting companies and overviews on river routes, visit the website of the National Association of Rafting Agents ( You can also check Whitewater Adventures-Nepal ( for an overview of rafting options across Nepal.
Rafting and kayaking are two adventure sports that are often combined for a trip down a river. Rafting and kayaking in Nepal can be dangerous, but many safety precautions can be taken to reduce the risks involved.
The following steps will help you protect yourself before you hit the waves.:
Always wear a life vest and helmets.
Never go out alone. Make sure someone knows where you will be going and for how long you will be out. They should know your exact route and how long it should take you to complete your trip, as well as where you are going to exit the river.
It is also vital that you always go with a licensed guide, as they have the proper knowledge of the river’s dangers and will know how to handle any mishaps.
Choose a modern self-bailing raft.
Have two rafts per trip. In case you are rafting in higher water, three rafts are recommended.
Speak to the guide before the trip to know what kind of people you will be associating with and the type of trip they run.
Make sure the guides are certified on first-aid and cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR).
Avoid laceration by keeping your body and your feet inside the raft when it hits the rocky walls.
In case you fall on rapids, do not panic. Get into the ‘white-water swimming position’ where you float on your back and stretch your arms with your feet up and facing downstream. Make sure your face and toes are out of the water.

When you are rafting/kayaking with an agency, all equipment and tents will be provided by them. However, there are some items that you need to arrange yourself, such as:
Light clothing
Light tennis shoes/ strapped sandals
Insect repellant
Waterproof camera container
Paddle jackets (can be hired)
If you are staying overnight, then pack:
Sleeping bags
Warmer thermal clothes


Kayaking in Nepal is a great way to experience the country’s natural beauty and culture. With a team of kayakers, you can explore Nepal’s remote regions, learning about the lifestyles of Nepalese people. It is a great way to see nature from a perspective that you can’t get on land, and it is a great way to exercise. If you’re not used to mountainous areas, it can be hard to kayak.
The Modi Khola, Tamba Kosi, Thuli Bheri, and Tamur tributaries are great for kayaking. Upper Modi Khola is excellent for experienced Kayakers.

Kayak Clinics in Nepal
Kayak clinics can be an enjoyable way to improve one’s kayaking skills and make the most of one’s vacation time. You can take a private lesson with an expert instructor or join a group of like-minded kayakers for a class designed to build team spirit.
Kayak Clinics in Nepal are a great way to learn how to kayak, meet other people who share your passion, and may even have the opportunity to see some of the most stunning scenery in Nepal. It is a great way to be introduced to Nepal’s culture, meet like-minded people, and to improve your skill.
One of the most popular kayak clinics in Nepal is organized by Paddle Nepal. They offer a beginner kayak clinic designed to get a first-time kayaker feeling comfortable and competent in white-water rapids within just four days.
The ultimate itinerary is one day on Pokhara’s Phewa Lake with views of the Annapurnas, followed by three days of paddling and camping on the Lower Seti River. It is the best way to learn the basics of white-water kayaking while exploring Nepal.
Also, GRG Adventure Kayaking offers kayak clinics during quieter sections of the Sun Kosi rafting run.
Small, family-run outfitters lead other kayak clinics. A popular location for kayak clinics is the Seti River in the foothills of the Himalayas in Nepal. A full day on the river will include paddling down gentle rapids with plenty of opportunities to practice skills and enjoy the scenery but also allow some time to stop at a village or two where you may be invited inside someone’s house for a cup of tea.

Taking part in one of these adventure tours can be an enjoyable way to spend time with friends or other people you have just met. You can rent a kayak individually or join a group of people who share your interests and passions. Make sure to bring nose plugs for all the water you are going to inhale.

Pokhara is the perfect place to paraglide in the world. It is not just because of its scenic beauty but also because of its safe take-off location, stable thermal currents, and landing zone.

The perfect months for paragliding start from March to May, then September to November.

The paragliding flight takes off from Sarangkot, which is 45 minutes away from the lakeside. The take-off from Sarangkot allows you to see the views of mountain ranges, Phewa Lake, the White Peace Pagoda, the jungles on the hills, and the beautiful city, all while soaring high up with the birds.
The Tandem Flight usually lasts for 25-35 minutes, and you can also tell the pilot if you want to go easy or perform some stunts. It will be one hell of a thrilling experience of your life.
The best thing is that you can take your go-pro footage and photos home. If you are experienced, then you can paraglide on your own too. Just ask for permission from the Aviation Office of Pokhara.
Tandem flights: $90 for 30 minutes and $140 for 60 minutes.
Solo flights: $70
Sometimes the go-pro footage costs an extra $14.20. You are not allowed to take your phone and camera for safety purposes.
If you are booking from a paragliding company, then it may cost you around $125, which includes transportation to and from the paragliding spot to your hotel, paragliding fees, photos, and videos.
Sarangkot Paragliding and High Ground Adventures Nepal as the best companies for paragliding.

Ziplining is also a favorite adventure activity in Nepal. Nepal’s best ziplining spots are Dhulikhel and Pokhara.
Worldwide Adventures Pvt. Ltd operates the Dhulikhel ziplining. (Ph: 01-6912737).
In Pokhara, it is operated by High Ground Adventures Nepal and is one of the best zipline experiences in the world. It is the steepest and one of the longest ziplines globally, which gives you fantastic views of the Annapurna mountain range, the Phewa Lake, Seti River, and the Annapurna mountain range. It swoops your heart as the zip line speed reaches 120 km/h.
You can book a zipline with the High Ground Adventures Nepal for $90, which includes hotel pick and drop, transport by private vehicle, a professional photo, and video to take with you.

Bungee Jumping
Bungee Jumping is a popular sport in Nepal. The most famous destinations for bungee jumping are Pokhara, Kushma, and Bhote Koshi.
The jump-sites have delightful views of the Himalayas and the rivers. In 3 seconds of free Fall, you will feel the adrenaline in your body kicking in. Prepare to feel the adrenaline-induced euphoria as you hang in the open air.
Bungee Jump in Nepal ranges from a height of 75 meters to 160 meters, which is like jumping off from a high tower. Bungee Jumping in Nepal is completely safe, has certified international jump masters, and maintains high safety standards.
High Ground Adventures Nepal (
The Last Resort (

Kathmandu—Nepal’s capital city, is the center of the country’s history, art, and economy. It is a city with a lot on its history, from several kings and queens to interesting legends about demons and gods. It is truly a modern city that comes alive with its ancient values and culture.
It falls in the central region of Nepal, situated at 1,296 meters above sea level. It is a political, cultural, and economic hub of the nation. It is a diverse city that houses more than 1.7 million people of multi-ethnicity. You will find many religious and cultural festivals going all-year-round in Kathmandu.
With numerous monuments, heritage sites, and places suitable for outdoor adventure, it challenges all South-East Asian cities to provide a complete experience.
Kathmandu pulls visitors with its attraction sites that have exquisite architecture. Some are the carved wooden windows, pillars, and bronze sculptures that rest on every stupa.
The city is the most urbanized of all the cities in Nepal.
Kathmandu has Nepal’s finest hotels, eateries, and transportation services. Sure, some may not match the level of other developed countries. But mind you, it has the best ones when it comes to developing countries.
It is also a safe city to travel around. The only thing you need to be careful about is the pollution and noise. Plus, for your safety, travel in a group or with someone at night.

Kathmandu: History
The name ‘Kathmandu’ comes from the word ‘Kasthamandap,’ which means ‘Wood Pavilion’ in Sanskrit. The pavilion stood in Durbar Square. It was rebuilt in 1589 AD during the reign of Laxmi Narsingha Malla.
Legends have it that the timber used to build the Kasthamandap pagoda was obtained from a single tree. The history of Kathmandu’s origin has two parts: legends and written records.
According to famous legends, present-day Kathmandu was once a vast lake full of snakes. People called it the ‘Nagdaha.’
A Bodhisatwa named Manjushree cut the hill of Kirtipur and drained the water with his sword. After exhausting all the water, he established the city and made Dharmakas the ruler.
Another legend has it that after the valley got established, a demon named Banasur apprehended the valley. He also closed the outlet from where the water drained.
Then the Hindu God, Lord Krishna, and some Gopalas came to Nepal and killed the demon. He restored the valley and made Bhuktaman the king of Nepal.
There are very few historical records about who ruled Kathmandu before the medieval Licchavi Dynasty.
According to a genealogical record of Nepal Monarch Gopal Raj Vansawali, the Gopalas were the firsts to make Kathmandu their habitat. Then, Mahispals and Aabhis ruled the valley.
It was in the reign of Yalamber that the Kirati Dynasty was established. Settlements called Yambhu and Yengal were set up in the north and southern half of the valley.
During the Kirati reign, Buddhist monks entered the valley. They established a forest monastery at Sankhu.
The Licchavi king, Gunakamdev, had defeated the Kirati Dynasty around the 9th century. After that, the city was founded again in the pages of history.
During this era, the Shakyas, who survived the genocide in Lumbini by Virudhaka, migrated to Kathmandu. There they established the first permanent Buddhist monastery of Kathmandu. It is how the Newar Buddhism Society came into existence in Nepal.
The best time to travel to Kathmandu and Nepal as a whole is in the post-monsoon season,i.e from October to December.
These are the months when the monsoon rain clears out the dust. It makes way to the perfect view of the Himalayas and the blue skies.
October to December has the perfect weather for sightseeing and traveling cross country. These are the peak season to travel to Kathmandu as well.
Spring Season (February to April) is also an excellent time to visit Kathmandu. There can be low visibility of the sceneries, but you will indeed face good weather.
AVOID the monsoon season, which lasts from June to August.
Kathmandu uses the Nepalese currency (NPR) for its transactions. There are many foreign-exchange offices all over Kathmandu.
Like most travelers, if you are staying in Thamel, then it has many foreign-exchange offices. Those offices will readily change your dollars for Nepalese currency.
Many ATM Lounges in Kathmandu accept foreign cards too. Some shops in Kathmandu also receive the Indian currency.
Nepal has got only one functioning international airport until now. Luckily, it is in Kathmandu. So book a flight straight to Tribhuvan International Airport, Kathmandu, from your home.
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Kathmandu Durbar Square
The Kathmandu Durbar Square is also known as Basantapur Durbar Khsetra or Hanuman Dhoka. This Durbar Square has the Malla and Shah Kings’ palaces, who ruled over the city many decades ago. They built the first palaces under the supervision of King Gunakamdev in the late 10th century.
Then the Shah Kings favored the royal palaces. Kathmandu Durbar Square has hosted many royal events. One of them was the coronation of the Shah rulers.
You will see a series of Hindu and Buddhist shrines, beautiful courtyards. You can also see sculptures and traditional Newari wood carvings dating back to the 16th century.
Sadly, most of the Kathmandu Durbar Square structures collapsed in the 2015 earthquake. They are still on the verge of reconstruction.
There are still more amazing sites to see at Durbar Square. Some attractions are the Jagannath Temple, Hanuman Dhoka, Kal Bhairav, and Kumari Ghar.
The best thing about Kathmandu Durbar Square is that it is only 5 minutes away from Thamel.
Entrance Fee: $10 – $15 per person for one day pass.
If you want to extend your pass, you need to bring your passport and a passport-sized photo. You will need your passport for processing at the site office.
Kumari Ghar
Kumari Ghar is located in Kathmandu Durbar Square. It is a place with great religious importance as it houses a living goddess called ‘Kumari.’ Kumari Ghar welcomes every traveler with a set of elaborately carved doors.
Kumari makes a public appearance only at a handful of events. Hindus and Buddhists worship her. Make sure to visit Nepal during the festival times to get a glance at her.
The story of Kumari is fascinating.
Legends have it that King Gunakamdev was friends with Goddess Taleju. They used to play dice every night.
Goddess Taleju helped the king to protect the kingdom. In return, she commanded the king to keep their meeting a secret.
One day the king’s wife got curious about where her husband would go every night. So, she followed him only to see the Goddess herself.
The Goddess became furious and disappeared. The king pleaded for her return. On this, Goddess Taleju said that she would reincarnate into a young Shakya (Newari) girl. And, the king will have to find her.
It is how, till today, the Kumari is selected from a group of girls. These girls possess a set of characteristics like a specific date of birth, physical attributes, etc.
To be a Kumari, the girl has to go through many tests. Her tenure begins as the Royal Kumari until she gets her first menstruation if she passes all the tests.
People say that getting a glance at her brings good luck.
Swoyambhunath Stupa (Monkey Temple)
Swayambhunath, also known as the Monkey Temple, is one of the holiest sites of Nepal. It is located atop a hill overlooking Kathmandu.
You need to climb the 365 steps to reach the top of this UNESCO World Heritage Site. You will encounter some clever monkeys who are not afraid of humans. Try to maintain distance and DO NOT tease them.
If you do not want to climb the stairs, you can take a taxi to the hill’s base. The entrance of the stupa has a fountain. People believe that if you succeed in throwing the coin inside the pot, your wishes will come true.
You can see a massive domed stupa with a spire painted with the image of Lord Buddha’s eyes once you reach the top. Prayer wheels and other small shrines and temples encircle the stupa.
The site can be a bit crowded. The hymn ‘Om Mani Padme Hum’ playing in the background and incense sticks’ scent create a calming vibe.
The best time to visit Swayambhunath is around 5 PM – 6 PM. The sunset view, the blinking of lights, and the monks’ chanting in the background will be a beautiful experience.

Entrance Fee: $2 per person
Boudhanath Stupa
Boudhanath Stupa is another Buddhist pilgrimage site listed as the UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is also known to be the largest stupa in existence.
The eyes of Buddha at Boudhanath have been looking over Kathmandu since the 14th century.
The Boudhanath area was once a trade route between India and Tibet. It also became a base camp for Tibetan refugees who fled from China’s oppression. Because of this, Boudha is heavily influenced by Tibetan Buddhism.
Every day thousands of pilgrims walk around the stupa, spinning the prayer wheels as they go. On the side of the stupa is Guru Lhakhang Gompa. Visiting this Gompa is a must, too, as it is one of the oldest monasteries of the Boudha area.
The monastery has statues of Guru Padmasambhava, Amitabh Buddha, and Arya Avalokiteshwara. As a whole, Boudhanath is a great site to witness authentic Buddhism culture. You can also experience the ritual activities.
Restaurants and cafes serve local Nepalese and international cuisines around Boudhanath. The eateries present good food with the best views of the stupa. The only thing to consider is the skyrocketing prices.
Entrance Fee: $2 per person
Pashupatinath Temple
The Pashupatinath Temple is a famous Hindu religious site. It invites pilgrims from all over the world. The temple’s existence dates back to 400 BC.
This temple has a robust religious and spiritual vibrancy. The site is dedicated to Lord Shiva and has over 518 temples inside its premises.
People consider the main temple a masterpiece in Hindu architecture. The reason behind it is its traditional pagoda structure.
One thing to note when visiting Pashupatinath is that the temple welcomes Hindu devotees only. If you are not one, you will have to take a guide with you to know which area you cannot enter.
Hiring a guide is also an excellent way to know more about the history and culture of Pashupatinath. The best time to visit Pashupatinath Temple is in the evening time. It is when Aarati takes place.
Aarati is a ceremony the priests perform. With the chant music playing in the background, the priest lights a flame (Aarati) and passes it around a deity. The incense sticks and camphor are also burned and offered to Lord Shiva.
Pashupati Temple’s riverbank is also a holy cremation area. It is not a sight to see for the faint-hearted. But if you can, then you will realize the meaning of impermanence and tragedy.
Entrance Fee: $10 per person
Garden of Dreams
For a laid-back day in Kathmandu, visit the Garden of Dreams. It is a neoclassical garden in Kaiser Mahal, Kathmandu.
Sir Kaiser Shumsher Jung Bahadur Rana owned this garden built-in 1920. After his demise, it went to the hands of the Government of Nepal. The government left it neglected.
The government, with support from the Austrian government, renovated the site between 2000 and 2007. Even if only half of the original garden remains, the Garden of Dreams is still bliss for the visitors.
The amphitheater-shaped gardens are decorated with greenery. It has beautiful pavilions, fountains, European-styled verandas, pergolas, and birdhouses.
The area also has decorative garden furniture and yellow bamboo trees. It truly is a very chill place to hang out and get away from the fast-paced tour for a day.
Garden of Dreams also has a restaurant in its compound called the ‘Kaiser Café.’ This restaurant is a bit pricey, but enjoying a meal or a drink overlooking a picturesque garden will be worth it.
Entrance Fee: $2 per person.
Narayanhiti Palace Museum
The Narayanhiti Palace Museum is on the east side of the Garden of Dreams. The museum was once a palace where Nepal’s royalty resided. The court hosted many important occasions in the state.
Narayanhiti Palace transformed into a museum after King Gyanendra’s fall in 2008. The 2015 earthquake caused damages to the palace walls and gates.
On your visit, the royal throne will amaze you. There are 52 late-victorian-styled rooms in the palace, named after the 75 districts of Nepal. The other highlights are the stuffed gharial, tiger, rhino heads.
The palace also showcases massive portraits of the late royal families. A visit to this museum will make you feel closer to the life of royalty.
It was a tragic event for Nepal. You can still see the bullet holes in some of the walls of the palace.
A day at the museum will surely help you learn more about Nepal’s history. Mobiles and other electronic devices are not allowed inside the museum. You can get lockers where you can keep your belongings safe.
Entrance Fee: NPR 500 / $4.28

Bhaktapur Durbar Square
Bhaktapur Durbar Square is one of the most beautiful sites in the region. It has a conglomeration of pagoda and shikhara-style temples, impossible to miss.
The square is in Bhaktapur, 40 minutes away from Kathmandu Durbar Square. Bhaktapur is a city known for being the home to the Newari tribe from way back. Thus, you can see a heavy Newari influence on culture and architecture.
The city thrives on artistry and crafts. Buy souvenirs in Durbar Square’s souvenir markets as the locals make them. The major attractions of the Bhaktapur Durbar Square are:
i. Nge Nyapa Jhya Laayakoo (55 Windowed Palace)
The Durbar Square houses the fifty-five windowed palace, built during the reign of King Bhupendra Malla. The building, indeed, is a magical place. Each of its fifty-five windows has intricate wood carvings.
ii. Nyatapola Temple
Nyatapola (meaning five stories in the Newari language) is a five-storied temple. It represents the five essential elements. The Nyatapola Temple displays artistic beauty while being the tallest pagoda of Nepal.
iii. Golden Gate
The Golden Gate of Bhaktapur is world-famous. It has richly molded embellishments of the Hindu goddess Kali, monsters, and other mythical creatures. You have to see the gate with your own eyes to believe its beauty.
Visit some other beautiful temples like:
• Vatsala Temple
• Bhairavnath Temple
• Mini Pashupatinath Temple
• Kedarnath Temple, and more.
Do not forget to try Juju Dhau—Newari Yogurt made from buffalo milk. It is a sweet and creamy staple food of Bhaktapur. You will not get such a taste in all of Nepal, let alone the world.
Entrance Fee: $10 – $15 per person.
2. Patan Durbar Square
Patan Durbar Square is the third Durbar Square located at Patan, Lalitpur. It is the smallest of the three Durbar Squares, but it is also the most enchanting one. It leaves the best impression on its explorers.
Patan Durbar Square is one of the better-managed historical sites of the area. It has fewer souvenir stalls that make the place less chaotic and less crowded.
The Patan Durbar Square is the marvel of Newar architecture. The temples and palaces floored with red-brick tiles add to the antique grandeur of this square.
Authorities transformed the Royal Palace into a museum called the ‘Patan Museum.’ It once housed the royal family residences and treasures from Nepal’s rich cultural history.
The museum has bronze and copper casts. It also has traditional crafts from Patan’s locals.
Inside the museum, there are three courtyards. They are Mul Chowk, Sundari Chowk, and Keshav Narayan Chowk.
Each yard has its impressive religious shrines. The whole complex boasts several temples, each with exquisite carvings.
Besides the museum, visit other attractions of Durbar Square like:
• Krishna Mandir
• Bhimsen Temple
• Vishwanath Temple
• Taleju Bhawani Temple
Entrance Fee: $10 – $15 per person
Nagarkot, nestled in the foothills of the Himalayas in Nepal, is not just another mountain town. The town provides a fantastic view of Mount Everest and the Himalayan range of eastern Nepal. The city also offers impressive walks around the streets to get one’s bearings from before starting a trek in the hills and valleys around these towns.

It is a gateway for travelers who want to experience Nepal’s beautiful landscapes and those who wish to trek in the mountains. The entire city is a trekker’s delight, with steep slopes and a river flowing through the city. It is a great place to go trekking, with lots of cheap guesthouses and luxury hotels offering good trekking packages and providing necessary trekking gear.
Some of the places to visit in Nagarkot are:
I. Nagarkot Hill Point
Nagarkot Hill Point is an excellent spot for 360 panoramic mountain views. It is the best spot near Kathmandu to watch the sunrise and sunset. It would be best if you got there early as the tower only takes roughly ten people at a time.

Ii. Paneer Cheese Factory
Located downhill near the Hotel Shivapuri is the Paneer Cheese Factory, where you can see how cheese is produced. You can buy as well as try some cheese while you are here.
Budhanilkantha is a municipality that stretches to the Shivapuri National Park. The city is known for the Budhanilkantha Temple, an open-air temple in the Kathmandu Valley dedicated to Lord Maha Vishnu. It is one of the oldest and most important Hindu temples in the valley. The temple is situated on a hillock that stands south of Kathmandu and can be seen from a long distance. It is considered the most important of all temples in the Kathmandu Valley.
Budhanilkantha comes from a combination of two words, Budha means old or ancient, and Nilkantha means blue throat, a name of Lord Vishnu.
The temple’s history dates back to prehistoric times when it was built on the spot where Lord Vishnu killed a demon named Madhu. Madhu was a demon who regularly terrorized the people of Kathmandu. Lord Vishnu killed him, and he restored normalcy. This is now marked with a victory pillar near the temple. Thus, Budhanilkantha is also known as Durbar Square, which means the Old Royal Palace Square.
Budhanilkantha is a popular attraction for both travelers and locals. It is especially crowded during festivals and special occasions. Tourists in Budhanilkantha are famous for their 10-hour plus walks. The best way to see the place and the grounds are on foot, where you’ll be able to experience the spectacular city views and the beautiful park that surrounds the temple. Tourists should still be aware of pickpockets when visiting the temple grounds.
The temple is a heavily decorated structure with elaborate carvings and intricate stonework in marble and sandstone. The outside of the temple is not as impressive or as important as what lies inside.
The main hall of the temple is where the Lord resides. It’s quite dark in there, but it’s still worth exploring. The idol’s face has been chipped off due to a myth that one could not receive blessings if one looked directly at it. But one can see his reflection in a mirror that hangs on the wall behind him. There’s also a small deity of Ananta or Lord Vishnu’s serpent bed beside him.
There are many smaller shrines inside the temple complex. Some are dedicated to various gods and goddesses of the Hindu pantheon, including Hanuman, Mahalaxmi, Ganesh, etc.

Gokarneshwor is a municipality located on the northeast side of the capital city, Kathmandu.
This municipality boasts diverse geography, historically important religious places, and the holy river Bagmati. Some of the notable destinations to visit in Gokarneshwor are:

I. Gokarna Forest Resort
Gokarna Forest Resort is a perfect destination for those looking for an offbeat, adventurous, and yet relaxing break. From the moment you enter the Gokarna Forest Resort, you will feel all your stress melt away while being surrounded by the fresh air of the dense tropical forest and a pool that will just blow your mind.
Gokarna Forest itself is a popular tourist destination for spiritual seekers and those seeking to explore the beauty of nature too. You can find deer wandering around and some bird species also. The forest has lush vegetation and many species of birds.

Ii. Gokarna Mahadev Temple
Gokarna Mahadev Temple is a temple dedicated to Lord Shiva. This fine three-tiered temple is an example of Newari pagoda-style architecture. This highly significant temple in Nepal is located near Gokarna, a village several kilometers north-east of Boudhanath in the Kathmandu Valley.

Kirtipur is a beautiful historic village in the Kathmandu Valley, located about 5 km south-west of the capital city. The town is the center of Newar culture and rich historical background.
The ancient medieval town of Kirtipur is a UNESCO World Heritage Site in the Kathmandu Valley of Nepal. It is located on the Bagmati River’s eastern bank and two miles south-east from the capital city of Kathmandu.
Some of the sites to visit in Kirtipur are:

Bagh Bhairab Temple
Bagh Bhairab Temple is a temple dedicated to the deity Bhairab in the form of an angry tiger. Bagh Bhairab Temple was built around the 16th century. The temple has been built on a raised platform. This is one of Kathmandu’s most famous temples.
They consider this deity to be the embodiment of wisdom, productivity, and resistance to all evils; hence the auspicious ceremonies such as weddings, Bratabandha for adolescent boys, rice-feeding, and other rites are done only after worshipping God Bhairab at this temple.

Uma Maheswar Temple
Uma Maheswar Temple has significant historical and architectural importance. Rautra Vishwanath Babu, the son of King Sidhhi Narsinga Malla, built the temple in the 16th century, but was destroyed in an earthquake in 1832 A.D. It was restored in 1933 A.D.It was damaged again by an earthquake. Local people and the government made an effort to renovate it, and the process was completed only in 1982 A.D.
An artistic stone gate welcomes visitors to the temple. On either side of a stone staircase leading to the temple stands a stone elephant, representing Bhimsen and Kuber, guardians of the temple.
Lord Shiva and Parvati are the principal deities of this temple.

Chilancho Stupa
Chilancho Stupa is a Buddhist monument in Kirtipur. The stupa was built in the medieval period and had an inscription from the Lichhavi Period (Nepal Samvat 635). It is regarded as one of the most important historical sites in the region. Visiting this site would not only be of historical learning but will also be spiritual.

Main Square
The main square used to be the home to Kirtipur’s royal family. The square is now a popular place for the locals to chit-chat. The square has some earthquake damage but still is beautiful enough to catch the photographer’s eye.
Pharping is a Buddhist holy site in Nepal. It’s a town that attracts many visitors. If you want to see Buddhist culture closely, Pharping is the perfect destination for you. Pharping is a small Newar town lying above the Bagmati river on the Kathmandu valley’s southern edge, about 23 km from the capital. It is now part of the Dakshinkali Municipality.

Sheesh Narayan Temple
The Sheshnarayan Temple is an ancient Hindu/Buddhist temple built in the 17th century. The temple is situated beneath a rocky cliff wall. Here, the shrine of Lord Vishnu is surrounded by ponds, statues, and a Tibetan monastery.
It is believed that the cave, known as the Guru Rimpoche cave, was a pilgrimage site way before the temple was built. This fascinating temple also has statues from the Licchavi period and some lively artworks of Garuda and Hanuman. The religious site mesmerizes its pilgrims with the hymns and chants in the Pavillion.

A Hindu temple and pilgrimage site near Kathmandu,Dakshinkali is a Hindu holy site where the goddess Kali is worshipped. The worshipers of Dakshinkali are mainly ethnic Tibetans and Hindus. The pilgrimage to the temple is a part of Hindu-Buddhist culture. According to Hindu mythology, Dakshinkali is the gateway to the underworld where the dead’s souls are said to go before they enter heaven. Since Goddess Kali is the most bloodthirsty incarnation of Parvati, pilgrims sacrifice animals to satisfy her.
As brutal as it is, some celebrate this fact by hosting a picnic afterward.

Bungamati is a small village that lies in the Lalitpur district near the Kathmandu Valley. It is one of the few remaining towns in Nepal with a significant Newari population.
The village is rich in culture, history, and religion. Heavily populated by Newari people, Bungamati is also a local Newari alcohol center called “Aeila”.
Some of the places to visit in Bungamati are:

Rato Machhendranath Temple, Bungamati
Bungamati takes pride in being the birthplace of the patron god of Lalitpur valley, Rato Machhendranath. His temple, Rato Machhendranath Temple, is one of Nepal’s most famous Hindu temples, located in Bungamati.
Every year, the Rato Machhendranath Jatra (festival) is held with a great pump where the pilgrims pull the chariot honoring the deity.

Karyabinayak Temple, Bungamati
The Karyabinayak temple is a Hindu temple dedicated to Lord Ganesh in Bungamati, Lalitpur. The temple is one of the oldest and least-developed villages around the Kathmandu valley.
It is best to visit the temple on Saturdays if you want to be a part of a Newari feast and to listen to some bhajan (devotional music).

Bungamati Cultural Museum
Bungamati Cultural Museum is a must-visit for anyone interested in understanding the Kathmandu Valley’s cultural heritage as it is situated at about half an hour’s drive from the heart of Kathmandu Valley.

The museum houses many interesting objects that portray the history and culture of this beautiful country like the rare paintings, sculptures and instruments, and tools used by the people in ancient times. The museum is an integral part of our cultural heritage, and its conservation should be encouraged rather than ignored.

Neighbor to Bungamati, Khokana is a Village Development Committee of the Metropolitan City of Lalitpur. Khokana is known as the old village that blooms with Newari tradition. This peaceful village used to be ruled by the Malla Kings, due to which Khokana now has a high historical significance.
Khokana is an excellent place to go on a Village Day Tour since it is an open museum. One fascinating thing about Khokana is that the villagers’ farm duck and ducklings instead of chickens in their house. Exploring this culturally rich area by foot is the best way to make the most out of your tour.

Godawari is a beautiful village located 14 km southeast of Kathmandu. It is one of the most scenic towns in the Kathmandu Valley, with several beautiful temples.
The village is an excellent spot for going on scenic hikes. The area has rich wildlife and is one of the cleanest towns in Nepal too.
Godawari is also famous for the following spots:

Phulchowki Mountain
Phulchowki is the highest mountain near Kathmandu valley. It is famous for trekking and birdwatching.
You can see the eastern part of the Annapurna and Gaurishanker range and the Kathmandu valley’s views. Phulchowki mountain is a great spot to unwind from the city life of Kathmandu.

National Botanical Garden
Located at the Phulchowki mountain base, the National Botanical Garden was established by British designers G.A.C Herklots and Tony Schilling. It is a picturesque garden that is a center of plant conservation, education, and research.
Many locals come here for recreation purposes as well.

The temples (Godawari Kunda and Navadaha Kunda)
When visiting Godawari, it is a must to visit the Godawari Kunda and Navadaha temples. These are sacred springs where pilgrims come to bathe as a part of a ritual. Taking a dip, at least, is said to give you spiritual merit.

Kathmandu: Activities
Hike the Shivapuri Nagarjun National Park
Shivapuri Nagarjun National Park, located some 15 kilometers from Kathmandu’s central areas, offers a great hike.
You will get to hike through the lush green forests and see the Bishnudwar waterfalls. The national park has abundant flora and fauna. If you are lucky, you will get to see some animals and birds like Kalij Pheasants.
My favorite part of the hike is the scenery. After you reach the Nagi Gompa, you will get the chance to see Kathmandu valley’s best views. You will also see Langtang Mountain. I mean, that’s a feast for the eye.
You should have a picnic here.
Entrance Fee: NPR 1050 / $9
Kathmandu is an excellent site for sightseeing. The city is charming if you travel in the autumn season (October – December). You will get to see the blue skies and the best views of the city.
The best places to sightsee in Kathmandu are Swoyambhunath Stupa, Nagi Gompa of Shivapuri National Park, and Kirtipur.
Take a cooking class.
Learning and understanding a country’s food culture is a must. It is beneficial, especially when you crave a particular dish, and you won’t just have to crave for it. You can make it on your own.
There are many cooking classes in Kathmandu like Seven Women, Nepal Cooking School, and 2 Sisters Cooking School. All of these training schools will teach you how to make traditional Nepali dishes. Some Nepali delicacies are Dal Bhat with vegetable or non-vegetable curry, rice pudding (kheer), and dumplings (momo).
Taking a cooking class will surely be an experience that you can put to work in the future.
$45 for a 3-hour class at Seven Women
$10 for a momo making class at Sasane
Secret Food Tour with Backstreet Academy
Want to try some local food in Nepal while exploring the Nepali culture? Then going on a private food tour is a must.
You will get a friendly guide who will take you to the best yet low-key places to eat.
Backstreet Academy not only provides street food tours but also gives other courses. Mask carving, stone carving, momo cooking, pottery making, and more are some courses.
The company works with competent yet struggling artisans. So you will be learning with the craftsmen at their home or their workshops. As the company implies, it is genuinely the real local, the real Nepal experience.
Wall Climbing at Astrek Park
If you want to do some outdoor activity, then wall climbing at Astrek Climbing Wall, Thamel, is necessary. This wall climbing spot is Nepal’s tallest climbing wall—50 feet high.
It also has bouldering walls for the best-bodied climb experience. Beginners are welcome as they provide climbing courses as well.
Plus, the climbing site has several restaurants where you can relax and eat.
$350 on Sunday to Friday (8 AM – 4 PM)
$450 on Sunday to Friday (4 PM)
$450 on Saturday (8 AM – 8 PM)
If you want to rent climbing shoes, you need to pay $1.29, and the harness costs $0.86.
Nepal is an ideal destination for meditation retreats. It is because it has strong ties with Hindu and Buddhist traditions.
The good thing about meditation is that it helps rejuvenate your energy level by relaxing you. It is an excellent way of exploring the spiritual side of you.
There are many monasteries as well as private centers that practice meditation in Kathmandu. It will be an excellent opportunity to uplift your philosophy of living in a land.
Some of the best meditation centers in Kathmandu are as follows:
• Art of Living, Shankhamul Yoga Park
• Kopan Monastery, Kopan
• Kagyu Institute of Buddhist Studies, Kirtipur
• Sawar Meditation & Yoga Retreat Center Nepal
Shop for Souvenirs
Most of the places you will visit in Kathmandu have souvenir markets, be it on a footpath or in a showroom.
In tourist-hubs Thamel, Basantapur, and Patan, the vendors usually charge a hefty sum to travelers. So, make sure to haggle a lot.
You should also visit the Asan market in Newroad. Asan is located between Thamel and Kathmandu Durbar Square.
Asan is famous for being the bustling market where you can find EVERYTHING! FOR CHEAP!
Even if you do not want to buy anything, just sit at a local tea shop, grab a Chiya (tea) and watch the locals bargain. You can also chat with the locals while you sit there. You may learn some new insights about Kathmandu.
If you want to buy trekking gear and Mandalas, then Thamel is the place to go.
Kathmandu: Hotels
There are great hotels, lodges, and hostels in Kathmandu.
You can get luxurious hotels with swimming pools and catering services. Or, you can get a hostel where you can stay with other backpackers from all around the world.
Luxurious Hotels
• Hyatt Regency
Hyatt Regency is a five-star luxury hotel and resort in Boudha, Kathmandu. It is only five minutes away from Boudhanath.
The hotel provides room service and has a fitness center, spa, pool, and laundry services. There is also a restaurant on-site. The best thing about this hotel is that you can see the Boudhanath Stupa from your room’s balcony.
The price of the rooms ranges from $180 per night.
• Dwarika’s Hotel
The Dwarika’s Hotel, located at Battisputali, Kathmandu, is a heritage hotel with unique Nepali architecture. You will see antique sculptures and decoratives everywhere.
The hotel is also famous for its friendly staff and delicious food. The swimming pool of Dwarika is also very unique. The whole vibe of the hotel makes you feel like you are stepping back in time.
The price of the rooms ranges from $230 – $510 per night.
Mid-Ranged Hotels
• Kathmandu Grand Hotel
Kathmandu Grand Hotel, located at Thamel, is a home for every traveler. It is the best spot for you to stay as it is close to many attractions in Kathmandu. The hotel provides complimentary airport pickup services too.
The price of the rooms ranges from $230 – $510 per night.
• Nepal Pavilion Inn
It is another hotel in Thamel that has outstanding hospitality and comfortable bedding.
Nepal Pavilion Inn is famous for its warm décor with Thankas everywhere and has a delicious food menu.
The price of the rooms ranges from $22 per night.
Budget Hotels
• Hotel Himalaya Hub
Hotel Himalaya Hub is the best budget hotel with highly attentive staff and good food.
The rooms are big and comfortable. Every room has air-conditioning, flat-screen TV, a fridge, and a kettle. Now isn’t that a bang for the buck?
The price of the rooms starts at only $13.
• Tibet Peace Inn
Tibet Peace Inn is a three-star hotel in Thamel that has clean rooms and attentive staff.
Price ranges from $15 per night for the deluxe room.
Kathmandu also has many hostels for backpackers on a budget. Hostels are perfect for people looking for a great stay while meeting fellow travelers.
• Hostel Funky Monkey
• Hostel Solo Travel Nepal
• Wander Thirst Hostel
Airbnbs are also available in Kathmandu, with prices ranging from as cheap as $10 to $45 a night.
You can choose your stay at apartments or authentic homestays.
Suppose you are looking to get away from the hustle and bustle of Kathmandu. In that case, you should book your stay in some of Kathmandu’s neighboring cities.
• Hotel Mystic Mountain
Hotel Mystic Mountain is located at Nagarkot, an hour away from Kathmandu. It is a splendid place for you to enjoy the beautiful scenery of the region’s hills and mountains.
The hotel has a perfect mixture of modern luxury and greenery to relax you. Mystic Mountain also offers a delicious buffet menu. There, you can eat overlooking the Himalayas’ panoramic views.
Do not forget the infinity swimming pool and spa in the hotel!
Price ranges from $57 to $109 per night.
• Park Village Resort by KGH Group
Park Village Resort lies at the foothills of the Shivapuri National Park. It is just some 15-minute drive from the center of Kathmandu.
The only noise you will hear at this place is the chirping of birds.
Park Village Resort is a must for relaxation, adventure, and entertainment. Oh! You’d love the breakfast buffet too. Price ranges from $33 to $55 per night.
Kathmandu: Food
Some of the best restaurants that offer Nepalese food are:
i. Jimbu Thakali Restaurant
ii. Lete Restaurant
iii. Achaar Ghar
If you are looking for a pleasing experience with French, Russian, European, and Fusion cuisine, go to:
i. The Chimney Restaurant
ii. The Old House Restaurant
iii. Roadhouse Café
iv. OR2K
v. La Dolce Vita
Or, if you want to go to some local eateries to try some Nepalese dishes and snacks while saving some bucks, eat at:
i. Nandini Food Court (for Newari Food)
ii. Yangtaru Restaurant (for the best Chicken BBQ)
iii. Narayan Dai ko Masangalli Momo (for the best MOMO in town)
You will also find many street foods like momos, kebabs, rolls, sandwiches, pagodas, and what not at Thamel.
Do not forget to try the Lassi at Indrachowk when you are in Asan.
Kathmandu: Nightlife
Kathmandu is famous for having a booming nightlife. The experience meets every party lover’s expectation. From live music, acoustic open-mic nights to DJs, Kathmandu has it all.
Especially places around Thamel thrive on parties. It is a city that does not sleep. You will find locals and foreigners walking the streets of Thamel all night.
Some of the best places for a party night in Kathmandu are:
• Trisara, Lazimpat
• Purple Haze, Thamel
• Prive Nepal and The Common Room, Soaltee Mode
• Lord of the Drinks (LOD), Thamel
• Irish Pub, Lazimpat

Kathmandu: Things to know on your travel to Kathmandu
There are certain things that you need to be careful about as a traveler in Kathmandu. We should be aware of and respect the country’s culture while being cautious about our safety.
So here is some extra information that will help make your travel to Kathmandu smooth:
i. You should choose a conservative outfit while visiting religious sites as a way of paying your respects. Men should wear pants with long shirts or shirts with sleeves. Women should wear clothes that cover their shoulders and knees.
ii. Always wear a mask to avoid dust.
iii. Carry a reusable water bottle and only drink bottled mineral water.
iv. Carry a hand sanitizer and wet-wipes.
V. Carry a power bank, just in case there might be a sudden power cut.
vi. Carry a personal medical kit.
vii. Do not trek alone. Always have a guide or a trekking buddy with you.


Pokhara is a valley of beautiful lakes. It is a yogi’s zen, an adrenaline junkie’s heaven, and a base camp to the Annapurna Circuit itself. This city thrives on tourism with tourists coming from every part of the country and the world.
Religious sites, thrilling adventures, souvenir markets, best sightseeing spots, wellness retreats, luxury hotels to hostels, you call it, Pokhara has it all.
During the 17th century, Pokhara was ruled by the Shah dynasty as a part of the Kingdom of Kaski.
Pokhara gained more importance due to its old trade route, which connected India and Tibet. Slowly, the British also set up a recruitment camp to enlist soldiers for the ‘British Gurkha Army’ that attracted many Nepalese from all over Nepal.
Later, after India and China’s trading post was diminished, the city took a new role as a transit hub for Tibetan refugees who fled Tibet for India following Tibet’s annexation by China in 1959. The Tibetan community still maintains a presence in Pokhara.
After the construction of Siddhartha Highway in 1968, Pokhara was accessible by road and, thus, developed as a major tourist destination.
The best time to visit Pokhara is from September to November. These months are considered as peak tourist seasons as the weather is dry and best to carry out all the adventure activities.
December to February tends to be cold. Winter continues until March, and most of the outdoor activities cannot be done.
April to August is the monsoon season in Nepal, and Pokhara literally gets the most torrential rainfall in Nepal.
You have two options to reach Pokhara from Kathmandu: By flight or by road.
By Flight
If you are not on a strict budget and want to reach the destination as soon as possible to get the most out of your Pokhara tour then, opting to travel to Pokhara via plane is recommended.
All flights to Pokhara depart from Kathmandu. The best thing about traveling on a 30-minute trip to Pokhara by air is seeing the beautiful views of the hilly green landscapes and the Himalayas of the country.
Note that the flights are often delayed or canceled due to poor weather.
Several domestic airlines are flying to Pokhara like Nepal Airlines, Yeti Airlines, Buddha Airlines, and Shree Airlines. These are some of the safest airlines with multiple flights going from Kathmandu to Pokhara for $50-$60 during peak season.
A two-way ticket will cost you anywhere between $100-$200.
By Road
Another option is to travel by road via a tourist bus, jeep, or a HIACE minibus.
The trip can be long (8 hours!!), dusty and a bit uncomfortable but it is a lot cheaper means to travel to Pokhara. Take it as a road trip as you get to see some excellent natural views of the hills and the country’s rivers.
Pokhara and Kathmandu’s distance is just 200 kilometers, but since it is a developing country in terms of infrastructure; the roadways, and transportation system is a bit lagging.
The best ways to travel by road is through:
Tourist buses
Tourist buses offer luxurious and comfortable seats, free onboard wifi, bottled water, a one-time lunch buffet at a restaurant, and air-conditioning and device charging capabilities. The ride will feel safe and smooth as they have professional drivers.
Kathmandu – Pokhara: $25
Pokhara – Kathmandu: $25
Local Buses
Local buses are available for as little as $5, but I wouldn’t recommend it unless you are on a very tight budget.
You will be a victim of open-windows, pollution, and lots of odor.
One-way ticket: $5 (exclusive of any facilities)

Private Jeeps and air-conditioned HIACE microbuses are also available. However, tourist buses are the best option.
There are no railroads in this country besides Birgunj; thus, no train services.
(see page no:)
Pokhara uses the Nepalese currency for its transactions. There are many foreign-exchange offices in Lakeside, Pokhara, which will readily change your dollars for Nepalese currency. Many ATM Lounges accept foreign cards too.
Some of the shops in Pokhara also accept the Indian currency.


i. Phewa Lake
Pokhara and its lakeside are famous, all because of this gigantic emerald lake. It would be a sin to visit Pokhara and not take a boat ride on this city’s signature lake.
You can hire a boat with a guide or paddle on your own around the island. The boat ride around Phewa Lake usually takes an hour.
Hire a boat with a guide as you get to experience the tranquility in the silence of the lake while overlooking the mountains and the hills. It is also an excellent way to take a lot of pictures of yourself and the view.
Do visit the Barahi Temple, which is situated in the middle of Phewa Lake. This Hindu temple is an important religious site of Pokhara that is always busy with Hindu and non-Hindu pilgrims coming to be blessed by the priests.
Ticket price
1-Hour boat ride without boatman: $4.17
1-hour boat ride with boatman: $4.59
Full-day boat ride: $8.34
The ticket includes a life jacket.
ii. World Peace Pagoda (Shanti Stupa)
The World Peace Pagoda is located on top of the Ananda Hill and can be seen from all of the lakesides.
As its name, the World Peace Pagoda is a Buddhist monument that has a peaceful vibe and beautiful views.. The Pagoda has the views of the city, the vast Phewa Lake, and the Annapurna Mountains.
There are cafes, restaurants, and souvenir shops on the way to Pagoda. It is best to visit this monument just before Sunset.
How to reach World Peace Pagoda?
There are three ways to reach the World Peace Pagoda: boat, taxi, and a local bus.
Boat: Take a boat ride from the Lakeside to the opposite side of the lake. Then hike the summit through the gorgeous forests, which usually takes 45 minutes to an hour.
The one-way boat trip costs $7, and a return trip costs $9.
Taxi: You can also take a cab from Pokhara’s Lakeside to the summit, which takes about 45 minutes. You will have to climb a bit of stairs to reach the top.
I walked so fast because I was stoked to see what this place looked like up-close, and I was the first to reach the stupa while all of my friends were still down the summit.
A taxi ride costs $15 from Lakeside to the Ananda Hill.
Local bus: If you are on a backpacker budget, getting a local bus is an excellent way to travel to Ananda Hill. It will not be as comfortable as taking a taxi, but it is right on your budget.
A local bus ride costs only $0.63. CHEAP!
iii. The Caves
There are three caves in Pokhara that are must-visit sites, and each has its own significance.
Devi’s Fall and Gupteshwor Mahadev Cave
Devi’s Fall is an underground waterfall that is one of the most visited places in Nepal.
History has it that a Swiss couple went swimming at this waterfall. Due to the overflow of the water, the wife drowned in a pit. Her body was recovered after three days. Her father wished to name it ‘David’s fall’ after her name.
Later the name was changed to Devi’s Fall.
There is also a luck pond where you can make a wish and try your luck by throwing a coin and placing it on God’s statue. If you are successful in doing that, you’re considered lucky.
On its opposite side is the Gupteshwor Mahadev Cave, which is also a major attraction of Pokhara. The water from the waterfall passes through this cave.
Entrance Fee: $1
Mahendra Cave
Mahendra Cave is an important place for the Hindu pilgrims. The stairs that lead the way to the cave is beautiful, so take some photos for your Instagram.
The cave has a small statue of Lord Shiva and a plastic cow in the cowshed. The insides of the cave are dark with some tube-lights and light bulbs here and there. The ground is super slippery, so I suggest you hold on to the railings or wear shoes with good grips.
Entrance Fee: $9
Bat Cave
Bat Cave (Chamero Gufa) Is my favorite cave to visit in Pokhara.
It is just some ten minutes walk from Mahendra Cave. The cave is dark, and the bats cover all of the damp cave’s ceilings. Walking around the cave itself is an adventurous feeling, and the fear of waking up all those bats is just another thing that adds the thrill to it.
The exit to this cave is a very narrow gap, and myth has it that if you can get yourself out of that hole, you will be cured of your sins.
Entrance fee: $2-$4 (as you need a guide)
Sarangkot Viewpoint
If the World Peace Pagoda has the best sunset views, Sarangkot Viewpoint has the best sunrise views.
Sarangkot is a 30-minutes drive away from Lakeside, Pokhara. It is a popular one-night destination that attracts tourists for its beautiful scenery of the glistening Annapurna mountain, Machhapuchhre ranges, and the Phewa Lake beneath, which you’ll see when the sun rises early in the morning.
Sarangkot is also the paragliding take-off spot, which I will be getting into below.
How to reach Sarangkot?
Take a taxi from lakeside for $20. Mind it! The ride is 40-minutes long and bumpy, but worth the struggle.
Begnas Lake
Begnas Lake is located 15 kilometers away from Pokhara. This is another lake filled with tranquility.
Begnas is a lot quieter than Phewa Lake, which is bustling with an enormous number of tourists. At Begnas, you can just chill at the lakeshore park seats, sightsee or go for a boat ride.
While you are here, do eat some fish dishes.
How to reach Begnas Lake?
You can take a taxi which costs $15. Private taxis will usually get you to the destination by half an hour.
If you are tight on budget, then take the local bus, which will only cost you $5. However, the journey will be an hour-long as the bus picks other passengers up on the way.

7. Pokhara: Activities
i. Trekking the Annapurna Circuit
Trekking the Annapurna Circuit is one of the main reasons that lure people to visit Pokhara.
The reason why travelers love hiking in the Annapurna Circuit is that it is one of the most beautiful treks in the entire world. The breathtaking views of the Annapurna Range are, without a doubt, to-die-for.
The best thing about trekking the Annapurna Circuit is that you get many treks options depending on your time, budget, and fitness level.
Poon Hill Ghorepani Trek
The Poon Hill Ghorepani Trek is a famous 4-days trek that is suitable for kids too. You have to climb the stairs through some ethnic villages, jungles and see the pristine rivers.
The trek is quite easy. Poonhill is situated at an altitude of 3,200m. From here, you will see the perfect panoramic views of the gigantic mountains of Nepal, like the Dhaulagiri, Nilgiri, Machhapuchhre, and Annapurna II.
You should wake up at around 5 AM to watch the sunrise.It sure is early, but looking at the stars and the moon meeting the rays of the sun as it hits the snowy mountain ranges is the icing on the cake experience.
The Poonhill trek is quite affordable: $150 per person
The Annapurna Circuit
The Annapurna Circuit is a 15-days journey where you get to trek along some of the world’s tallest mountains. On your way, you pass some beautiful Nepalese villages and meet the Nepalese villagers living a life that is so different from the urban areas.
As much as pleasant the views and the experiences you may get, trekking the Annapurna Circuit is also a tough job.
October-early December or late February to April is an excellent time to trek the Annapurna Circuit. This is a period when the skies will be clear, and you can see the beautiful mountains vividly.
I suggest you book the trek with a tour company as you will get a team of local guides and porters who can organize everything for you, give you some insights about the place you are visiting, and help you with professional safety measures.
Note: You need a trekking permit for the Annapurna Circuit, like the Trekking Information Management System (TIIMS) permit, which costs $20 and the Annapurna National Park Permit, which costs $30.
The Annapurna Circuit trek will cost you anywhere from $700-$1500, depending on whether you are trekking solo or with a tour company.
Mountain flight
If you do not want to trek all the way up, then book a helicopter ride and enjoy the mountain views from atop. The cost of mountain flight to Annapurna Base Camp is $350 per person.

White Water Rafting at Upper Seti
Upper Seti is a hidden gem for rafting. To avoid the crowd of the Lakecity, go to Upper Seti for an hour and a half of rafting where you will get the view of the mighty Annapurna.
Fuel your wild inner spirit with non-stop Class III and Class IV rapids. I’m sure this will be an adventurous experience to try on your tour to Pokhara.
Paddle Nepal and Saara Tourism Nepal are some of the best companies that provide an awesome action-packed package suitable for families with children too.
$51.41- $60 per person
Paragliding (pg. no)
Ziplining (pg. no)
Bungee Jumping (pg no: )
Yoga Sessions
Yoga sessions are top-rated in Pokhara. This city has many yoga retreats that offer join-in classes, which is a day of meditation, healthy meals, and therapies.
You should definitely head towards some wellness spa or yoga retreats after trekking.
Purna Yoga Retreat, charges $100 per person. This cost includes 2-nights accommodation with an attached bathroom, full meal (breakfast, lunch, snack, and dinner) on the day of the program, breakfast the day after, Yoga and meditation activities, magnetized pure mineral water, Purna Yoga herbal tea and other wellness activities.
If you have less time, then Lotus Corner is a place to go. A drop-in class at Lotus Corner costs only $3 per class.
SUP, Kayaking, and Canyoning
Stand Up Paddling (SUP) and Kayaking are two activities to try out besides boating in Phewa Lake.
SUP is an easy water sport where you can row and enjoy the views of the lake. Take a Beginner Kayak Clinic (pg. no) and learn to Kayak in Phewa too. After you become more confident, you can learn it at the Seti River.
Going on a one-day canyoning trip is also fun if you want to do some more adventurous activities in Pokhara. Repelling down the waterfalls will be one hell of a worthy experience for you.
You can rent SUP boards, take a Beginner Kayak Clinic and go on a Canyoning trip with Paddle Nepal.
Canyoning: $85 per person (inclusive 13% government tax, transport to and from Paddle Nepal Lakeside Center and Lunch)
4-days Kayak Clinic: $271 per person (inclusive of 13% government tax, transport to and from Paddle Nepal Lakeside Center, Meals and Accommodation)
Renting SUP board costs $5.85 per hour, $20.88 for half-day and $29.24 for a whole day.
Hiring a cycle and getting around the city is just as good activity as doing adventurous activities in Pokhara. Cycling is an affordable means to explore Pokhara and admire the views of the lakeside.
You can get cycles of an excellent condition at reasonable prices in Lakeside. Make sure to check the gear shift before riding it.
Souvenir Shopping
You have come to Pokhara, might as well take something for your friends and family, or maybe just for yourself to add to your Pokhara memories.
Pokhara’s lakeside is filled with souvenir markets, each with intricate artistic masterpieces, singing bowls, key-chains, ornaments, postcards, etc.
The markets in the center of the Lakeside tend to be a bit pricey, so try to shop a bit afar from the Lakeside and try to haggle. You will get much better deals this way.
7. Hotels
Pokhara is a tourist city and has more hotels than it has houses. Staying at the lakeside and waking up to the Lake’s view is something beautiful about Pokhara that other cities cannot match.
Below I have listed some best hotels according to your needs, be it a luxurious one or a budget-friendly hostel.
Luxury Hotels
Hotel Pokhara Grande
The Pavilions Himalayas
Rupakot Resort
Middle-ranged Hotels
Pokhara Boutique Hotel
Kuti Resort & Spa
Bodhi Suites Boutique & Spa
Hotel Silver Oaks Inn
Budget Hotels
Hotel Spring
Hotel Iceland
Harvest Moon Guesthouse
The Mountain House
Gaurishankar Backpackers Hostel
Pokhara Youth Hostel
Kiwi Backpackers Hostel
Home Stays
There are also plenty of homestays in Pokhara that gives you an authentic experience of being in a Nepali household. Homestays are a great way of understanding the Nepali culture better.
Some homestays have prices ranging from $2 a night. MAD CHEAP!
8. Food
Pokhara has all types of eateries on its lakeside. There are continental, western, Asian restaurants, as well as local Nepali restaurants offering authentic Nepalese dishes. Not to forget, there are several street food stalls along the lake shores too.
AM/PM Organic Café
This café is a tourist’s favorite eatery simply because the café uses vegetables and herbs from organic farms as well as their own garden, meaning the café’s food is free of chemicals and preservatives.
AM/PM Organic Café is great for vegans.
Another thing that most of us love about this café is the Himalayan Coffee. They also have some fresh salads and smoothies that are great for a light breakfast.
Café Concerto
Café Concerto is the best in Pokhara when it comes to Italian delicacies. This restaurant is run by an Italian team who put their signature Italian touch on every meal they serve.
This café has the best pasta in the city.
Godfather’s Pizzeria
It is the public’s favorite spot for wood-fired pizza. This Pizzeria is always flooded with pizza lovers. The pizza toppings are plenty, and the cheese is put on a perfect amount.
Godfather’s Pizzeria has two branches; one in lakeside and one at Halan Chowk.
The Kebab King
This restaurant serves Nepalese and Indian dishes.
The Nepali Vegetarian/Non-vegetarian Thali set contains rice, lentils, vegetables, pickles, and non-vegetarian curry of your choice. It is one of the best-value meals which is hearty and gets you full for the day.
Besides, as its name states, the restaurant has terrific chicken kebab (skewers), naan, and curry.

9. Pokhara: Nightlife
Pokhara has a vibrant nightlife with lots of pubs and clubs around the lakeside. The Lakeside never goes dark. The people are walking around at night too. Lakeside is also known as “Thamel of Pokhara,” Thamel being the party city of Kathmandu.
Irish Pub
Irish Pub has a great ambiance with booze and good music. This is a great place to hang out with your friends.
The sports screening on game night is another exciting feature of Irish Pub.
You must have heard about Trisara in Kathmandu. Well, it has its branch at Pokhara as well.
Trisara hosts concerts of well-known artists, which are great. The regular acoustic performances are also lovely. But most of all, the snacks are delicious here.
Iii. The Rolling Stones Rock Bar
This is the best bar for all rock music lovers. It is a bit expensive but walk in for some mini-concert feel. The Rolling Stones Rock Bar has some great live performances over the weekend.

Buddha was born in Nepal,” a slogan that you will see a lot while researching Nepal.
One thing is real. Nepal takes pride in the fact that one of history’s most respected figures, Gautam Buddha, was born in this country’s Lumbini. Due to this, people consider it a very sacred site.
Lumbini has floods of travelers from across the globe every year. The city falls in the Rupandehi district of Nepal. This town is very close to the Indian Border.
Of all the places, the Lumbini Sanskritik Municipality is a holy site. It is a significant destination that demands the pilgrims and travelers looking for spiritual healing to explore it.
The Holy Sites is also listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is because of its history, monuments, monasteries, and natural and cultural wonders.
Traveling here needs to be thoroughly planned. The sites have their specific timing, and the weather challenges you till you have sweat all over and give up.
Lumbini: History
The history of this place has two sides; the legends and the written data.
According to Buddhist legends, Gautam Buddha’s mother, Maya Devi, was traveling to her paternal home in Kapilvastu. On her way, she went into labor at Lumbini.
People say that Maya’s birth-giving process was painless. Gautam Buddha (Siddhartha Gautam, by birth) was born while she was standing between twin Sala trees.
After he was born, baby Gautam immediately spoke the words, “This is my final rebirth.” The newborn baby took seven steps marking the cardinal directions starting from North.
Legends say that a lotus flower grew out from each of his steps. Divinities then washed the mother and child at a nearby pond (now, Pushkarna Pond). Even now, you can see the tradition of bathing the statue of Buddha at Buddha Jayanti (Birthday of Gautam Budhha).
Sadly, Siddhartha Gautam’s mother died seven days after his birth. Then, Maya Devi’s younger sister, Mahaprajapati, became his foster mother.
Being born to an aristocratic family, Siddhartha got curious after seeing his people’s sufferings. He got motivated by the existential concern for the human condition. And thus, he left his comfort of living in a palace to find the answers to human suffering.
He went on a religious quest. After a lot of meditation and learning, he got enlightenment at Bodh Gaya. He then became the Gautam Buddha.
It is famous as the birthplace of Lord Buddha. After a German archaeologist, Alois Führer rediscovered some of the Buddhist structures built by King Ashoka and the Maya Devi Temple. It covers the actual birthplace of Buddha.
They discovered the birthplace indicated by the marker stone in 1996 CE. As the legend has it, the holy pond, where Buddha and his mother took their first bath, was right in front of the temple too.
Most importantly, the historical facts were written in a pillar erected by the Indian Emperor Ashoka in 248 BCE. This pillar commemorates the birth of Siddhartha Gautam. It gives us the belief that the fact of Buddha being born in Lumbini prevailed from before the time of King Ashoka.
Two Chinese monk-pilgrims: Faxian in the 5th Century and Xuanzang in the 7th century, have recorded their visit. The records describe the Ashokan Pillar and the existence of the pond as well.
Today, it invites followers of Buddhist philosophy from all around the world. It gives a historical journey into the life of the legend that existed way before our time.
Lumbini: Best Time to Travel
It falls in the Terai region of Nepal, and it is relatively hot most of the year. The best time to travel is during the autumn season (October – November). It is when the temperature is dry and moderate.
If you want to visit, you should in April and May. The city comes to life in celebration of Buddha Jayanti.
AVOID summer season. Summer is an off-season for a reason, folks! The weather will be hot and humid, and the scorching sun will not let you explore the holy city barefoot. It will feel like walking on lava.
Lumbini: How to Reach
Lumbini is accessible by flight and by road.
i. By Flight
If you want maximum comfort or want a quick day tour, flying to Bhairahawa’s Gautam Buddha Airport from Kathmandu’s domestic airport will be the best. Bhairahawa airport is just an hour’s drive from the city.
Note: Bhairahawa is being made into an international airport, opening soon.
$116 for a one-way flight
ii. By Road
Roadways are also a good option for traveling. Lumbini is 272 kilometers away from Kathmandu. It takes about 8-10 hours, depending on your transportation means.
If you are traveling from Chitwan, then it is just a 3-4 hours drive.
a) Tourist Bus
Kathmandu – Lumbini: $10.02
Lumbini – Kathmandu: $10.02
b) Local Buses
Kathmandu- Lumbini: $5-$7
Bhairahawa- Lumbini: $0.5- $1
c) Taxi
d) Train
If you are traveling from India, then taking a train to Gorakhpur will be best. From Gorakhpur, you can take a bus to Sunauli. You will get buses from here that will take you to Lumbini.
It may sound a bit hectic, but it is worth the price.
Lumbini: Transportation
(see page no:)
Lumbini: Major Attractions
It is a Buddhist pilgrimage hub. It has been attracting many tourists for its rich history and culture.
This city also has many ancient artifacts that date back to the 4th century. Many renowned archaeologists had found them. So, this is also the right place for people who have interests in archaeology.
i. Maya Devi Temple
Maya Devi Temple is the most crucial attraction. It is where Buddha’s mother, Maya Devi, went into labor. She gave birth to him, here, as she was traveling to her paternal home.
Adjacent to the temple is the Pushkarna pond where Buddha and his mother took their first bath. People consider the Maya Devi Temple a very holy site for Buddhist pilgrims. You will find many devotees praying and meditating on the wooden floor of this dimly lit temple.
Archaeologists have found evidence of the oldest Buddhist Shrine from this place. It is now preserved in the Lumbini Pilgrimage Center. Visit the temple early in the morning as the day-time tends to get hot and crowded.
You cannot wear shoes inside the temple’s premises.
Right next to the temple is the Bodhi tree, where Maya Devi rested. Prayer flags cover the Bodhi tree and its surroundings. It has a very peaceful vibe.
You will also hear the chanting of prayers from monks and pilgrims. Among all the sites, this is the only attraction that charges money for a visit.
Foreigners: $1.67
Locals/SAARC Nationalities: $0.25
ii. Ashoka Pillar
Ashoka Pillar is among other famous attractions. It has an inscription of King Ashoka’s pilgrimage tour to Lumbini, written by a third party.
King Ashoka was a ruler of the Mauryan Empire. He resorted to the Buddhist principles of non-violence after witnessing losing lives in a war. He has built many pillars on the tenets of Buddhism, and one happened to be in Lumbini.
Alois Anton Führer discovered the pillar. He found them after going through the historical records. Two ancient Chinese monk-pilgrims, Xuanzang and Faxian, made these records.
Now, a small fence secures the pillar. People have decorated it with colorful prayer flags.
iii. World Peace Pagoda
You can find a series of Peace Pagodas around the world. Most of these are built under the guidance of a Buddhist monk from Japan, Nichidatsu Fuji. One of them happens to be at Lumbini.
The best time to visit this pagoda is the sunset as mornings and afternoons tend to be too hot. The World Peace Pagoda and its gardens are a great place to meditate, stroll around and relax. iv. Cambodia Monastery
. Cambodia Monastery’s construction was recently completed in 2018. Now, it is one of the fascinating monasteries with a strong touch of Angkor Wat.
A square railing surrounds the temple with four 50 meter long green snakes—one for each cardinal direction. Intriguing architectural bliss that awes any visitor fills the monastery.
v. Chinese Buddhist Monastery
Zhong Hua Chinese Buddhist Monastery, simply known as the Chinese Buddhist monastery, is the most beautiful temple.
The dogs of Fo flank are the gateway to the monastery. After this, you will see a courtyard that will fill your heart with serendipity. The pagoda-styled architecture makes the monastery look like the Forbidden City’s replica.
The Chinese Buddhist Monastery also has meditation cells and prayer rooms for visitors.
vi. Royal Thai Monastery
While most of the monasteries have colorful designs, the Royal Thai Monastery possesses a clean white aesthetic. It pleases every minimalist. The government of Thailand had funded this monastery.
The monastery was constructed with white marble.
It also has a blue-roofed meditation center nearby. It is another beautiful piece of architecture. When you are here, make sure to try Thai sweets, which cost NPR 50/ $0.42
vii. Myanmar Golden Temple
The Myanmar Golden Temple is one of the oldest structures in Lumbini. It is perhaps the most historically important one too.
The temple has a corn cob-shaped Shikhara (tower). It was shaped after the Temples of Old Bagan.
The structure makes the pagoda stand out from other temples.
There are three prayer halls inside the Myanmar Golden Temple premises. The temple also houses the Lokmani Pula Pagoda. It is a Burmese-styled stupa, inspired by the Shwedagon Paya in Yangon.
Plus, the numerous paintings at the temple make it more worth the visit.
viii. Korean Buddhist Temple
This Korean Buddhist Temple is also known as Dae Sung Shakya. The South Korean government had built this temple.
The temple has intricate architecture, constructed to preserve the Korean heritage. And I believe that the Korean government has been successful in doing so. Visiting this temple makes you feel like you are traveling in Korea.
The temple lets you meditate in the courtyard with the monks and pilgrims. The temple also offers a community sleeping area and provides three meals a day for a few days for a cost of $4.15 per day. I’m sure you will feel closer to nature and grow spiritually while on your stay here.
Make sure to book your stay or inform pre-hand about your incoming. The temple has some set of rules that keeps changing and allows only a limited number of people to stay.
ix. German Monastery
Great Drigung Kagyud Lotus Stupa, popularly known as the German monastery, is an extravagant stupa. The German Tara Foundation constructed this monastery.
The German monastery consists of great historical significance. It was built under the guidance of two great Rinpoches.
The stupa’s roofs have carvings of some Buddhist teaching. The whole of the monastery has beautiful combinations of gold, wood, and wood carvings.
There is also a small pond in front of the monastery premises, with a tiny frog statue. People believe that if you can place the coin on the frog, you will find luck.
x. Lumbini Museum
Located at the northern end of Lumbini Sanskritik, the museum is a beautiful art. The world-famous Japanese architect, Kenzo Tange, designed it.
The museum is perfect for understanding Lumbini’s history and culture. It dates back to the 4th century.
It houses a collection of books about architecture and cultural life. It has preserved many artifacts, terra cottas, coins, and religious manuscripts.
These manuscripts existed from the time of Maurya and the Kushan dynasty.
The museum also has a model of the Master Plan for Lumbini’s Development Zone. You can see it and imagine how this city will look like in your future visit.
Right on the opposite side of the museum is the Lumbini Research Institute (LIRI). It provides research facilities for Buddhism and other religions.
xi. Lumbini Crane Sanctuary
The Lumbini Crane Sanctuary covers over 6 square kilometers of land. It aims to protect the endangered Sarus Cranes around its wetlands.
You can also see an antelope-like blue bull at this sanctuary. You can see the cranes from the World Peace Pagoda, too, as it is quite close to the sanctuary area.
The entrance is free of cost.
These were 11 of the must-visit attractions here. It would also be best to visit the Vietnam Phat Quoc Tu Temple, Dharma Swami Maharaja Buddha Vihar, and Thrangu Vajra Vidya Monastery.
All of these places open from 8 AM to 5 PM.
Lumbini: Activities
So you have visited all the religious sites and museums, so what more is there to do. Read on to know about the activities that you can carry out.
i. Eat Street Snacks
The Terai region of Nepal has some authentic street snacks. Fulki, Pani Puri (an Indian street snack), Papdi Chat and Thukpa are some of the must try snacks.
ii. Watch the farmers on the paddy field
The Terai region of Nepal is also known as the granary house of Nepal. It produces food for the whole nation. Walking half a day off to watch the farmers carrying out their daily lives will fascinate you.
The farmers still use traditional methods for irrigation.Watching them work hard, with buffaloes and cows’ help, to irrigate the land is a sight to see. You can get insights into the local’s daily livelihood and know more about their culture.
iii. Meditate
One of the best things to do in Lumbini is meditation. It is a sacred site with a tremendous spiritual aura. It enhances your mind and body while meditating.
You can meditate at most of the monasteries. Meditating under the Bodhi tree or with the monks will undoubtedly be a new experience for you.
You can also go to meditation centers like Dharma Janani and Panditarana. You can register for the courses that are most suitable for you.
It can be a one-day course or a long 10-day course. All in all, you will find your inner peace.
iv. Visit nearby places
Plan a day-trip to nearby cities like Tilaurakot and Butwal.
• Tilaurakot
Tilaurakot is where Gautam Buddha resided at his palace. You can see the entrance of the castle through where Buddha left in search of enlightenment.
• Butwal
Butwal is another city to visit, which is highly influenced by urbanization. Personally speaking, it is a better place to stay the night while on your visit.
Butwal is only 11.4 kilometers away. You should spend some days at this place and visit some attractions of this city like:
• Sidha Baba Temple
• Manimukunda Park
• Banbatika Zoo and Park
• Hill Park
Butwal, is famous for hosting many parties. It has bars and clubs where you can relax after a long day of exploring Lumbini.
Below I have listed some fabulous places at Butwal where you can have a great night with good music and good food.
• The Concept Club and Pub
• Ojas Lounge and Club
• Flavour Lounge & Live Music
• Lime & Lemon

Lumbini: Currency
People accept both Nepalese and Indian currency, as the city is near the Indian border.
The best way of handling currencies on your own is by downloading a currency converter on your phone. There are many foreign exchange offices on the Main Bazaar. They will readily change your currency to the Nepalese rupee.
ATMs are also available, but they will charge a certain amount for transactions.
Lumbini: Hotels
It does have hotels and lodges where you can stay the night for cheap. You can get the most expensive hotels at the price of a middle-class hotel in Kathmandu or Pokhara.
Luxury Hotels
• Lumbini Hokke Hotel
• Hotel Lumbini Garden New Crystal
Middle Ranged Hotels
• Buddha Maya Garden by KGH Group
• Lumbini Buddha Garden
• Hotel Nans Lumbini
Budget Hotels
• Lumbini Garden Lodge
• The Lumbini Village Lodge
If you want to stay at Butwal instead, the city will also offer you some pretty good hotels. Some of my favorites are:
• Hotel Club De Novo
• Hotel Avenue
• Arambha Resort
Lumbini: Things to Remember
i. It is a religious site. Wear an appropriate outfit if you do not want the locals and other pilgrims to scorn upon you.
ii. Bring an umbrella or a cap if you do not want to get tanned. Plus, always wear sunscreen.
iii. Buy Odomos cream to repel mosquito bites. You can also buy Mortein mosquito repellent for as cheap as NPR 70/ $0.60 in any local shops.
iv. Always haggle for prices in terms of transportation. The drivers will always ask you for higher rates. And DO NOT fall for their emotional manipulation.
Known as the last forbidden kingdom of Nepal, Mustang is a charismatic valley. Mustang lies in Gandaki Pradesh in Northern Nepal. It extends northward to the Tibetan Plateau. Due to the strong Tibetan influence and many Buddhist monasteries, Mustang is also called “Mini Tibet.”
The magic of Mustang lies in its rugged terrains and mountains. These create a beautiful landscape on its valleys, carved by the Kali-Gandaki River.
Not to forget, Mustang is famous for its excellent outdoor activities. They are thrilling and out of the world.
Besides its scenic beauty and adventurous activities, Mustang also invites a lot of Hindu and Buddhist pilgrims. Devotees come from all over the world and Nepal itself to visit the Muktinath Temple.
Mustang has two parts: the Upper Mustang and Lower Mustang. To explain more, Upper Mustang is where there are caves, and adventurous treks take place. Simultaneously, Lower Mustang is where you see the natural scenery and wander the apple fields.
1. Mustang: History
The history of Mustang is mostly legends than written facts.
As per the belief, Mustang was a part of the Ngari area of Tibet. In the 14th century, Ngari became a part of the Malla Empire. From the 15th century, Mustang took control over the trade between the Himalayas and India due to its tactical location.
In 1380, it became an independent kingdom. Ame Pal had defeated the local warlords of Lo Manthang and became Mustang’s first king. He built the fortress of Ketcher Dzong and constructed the walled capital of Lo Manthang.
Ame Pal was a warrior and a devout Buddhist from Western Tibet. Because of it, Mustang had and still has a strong Buddhist influence. And since it was easy to cross borders due to its strategic position between Tibet and India, the monks of Lo went to Tibet to study.
Thus, in Mustang, the economy and culture were abundant. At the end of the 17th century, Prithivi Narayan Shah annexed Mustang as a part of a unified kingdom in Nepal.
In 1951, the constitutional monarchy was introduced in Nepal. Due to it, Mustang became a district. This movement took away most of the king’s power.
The Khampa guerillas made Lo Manthang their base to carry out resistance movements against Chinese annexation over Tibet. That is why the Nepal government declared Mustang a restricted area.
Before, Lower Mustang was only open for tourism, leaving Upper Mustang economically barren. After the 1990 revolution, the government partially opened Upper Mustang for foreigners.
The public abolished Nepal’s monarchy system in 2008, and thus, there was no king in Mustang. The last unofficial king of Mustang was Jigme Dorje Palbar Bista (1930-2016). His lineage goes back to Ame Pal.
2. Mustang: Best time to travel and trek
The best time to travel to Mustang is during Spring Season (March, April, May). These are the months when the weather is warm. The clear skies offer excellent visibility of the mountain peaks and landscapes.
You will see blooming Rhododendrons along your trekking trails. It will make your experience more beautiful. Besides, you will get to attend the Tiji Festival at Upper Mustang if you plan your Mustang Tour in May.
Autumn (September, October, and November) is also an excellent time to travel. The weather is dry and predictable than other seasons.
You will get to see the spectacular views of the mountain peaks and gorges. You can even sightsee some animals and birds of the Mustang region during this time.
Monsoon (June to September) is an ‘okay’ season to visit Mustang. Since Mustang lies in the rain-shadow area, the chance of heavy rainfall is low. But again, the weather will be unpredictable.
It is safe to say that the hiking trails will not be slippery or suffer from any landslides due to rainfall. Traveling to Mustang in the monsoon season is excellent if you want to attend the Yartung Mela. It features archery, horse race, and cultural dances.
I suggest you avoid the winter seasons that last from December to February. The temperature drops to 0 degrees Celsius at night, and you’ll feel cold.
3. Mustang: Currency
Mustang uses the Nepalese currency for its transactions. ATM lounges are prevalent only in Jomsom.
Change your dollars for Nepalese currency at foreign-exchange companies in Kathmandu. Do not expect Mustang to have them.
There are many foreign-exchange offices in Lakeside, Pokhara as well. They will readily change your dollars for Nepalese currency. Many ATM lounges at Pokhara accept foreign cards too.
4. Mustang: How to get there?
Before, Mustang was not accessible by any transportation means. People used to travel on foot and horses.
After the construction of the airport and roadways, it has become more accessible. You can reach Mustang by planes, buses, jeeps, cars, and trucks.
An off-road Jeep Safari Tour is the best way to visit Mustang. It is perfect for individuals who want to travel on their terms without the hassle of changing buses or going on multi-day treks.
Jeep Safari Tour is available in both the Upper and Lower regions of Mustang.
If you are adventurous and free-spirited, then hiring a motorcycle is a great way to tour Mustang. Mountain Bike Tour is very famous among the local travelers. It is growing among international tourists too.
Note: You must pay for the Upper Mustang Special Permit, which costs $500 per person. You will also need the Annapurna Conservation Area Permit of $300 per person. In most cases, your travel company will do it for you as you cannot travel individually.
Nowadays, tourists travel to and from Mustang on helicopters. As expensive as it may be, the tour around the Lower and Upper Mustang offers a unique experience to sightsee.
You will see the panoramic views of the high mountains and beautiful landscapes along the Kali Gandaki River. Some of the best companies for helicopter tours are Outshine Adventure Pvt. Ltd and Nepal Helicopter Service.
5. Mustang: Transportation
(see page no:)

6. Mustang: Major Attractions
i. Jomsom
Jomsom is the starting and ending point of your Mustang journey. This place is where your flight will land.
Jomsom is also known as Dzongsar, which means New Fort. It is a popular starting point for the treks to Muktinath or along the Kali Gandaki Valley.
Jomsom is a perfect destination to experience pristine nature. You can see beautiful views of Dhaulagiri and Nilgiri from here.
This place has a wireless station, police headquarters, hospital, veterinary, and a bank. Not to forget, Jomsom is the only place with a variety of restaurants among all of Mustang.
ii. Marpha village
Marpha is a beautiful stone-lined village that has many guesthouses and small hotels.
At Marpha, you will meet the Mawatan Thakalis. They are the inhabitants of Marpha. You can see them spending their days on farming and animal husbandry.
This village is very pleasing to the eye. The clean paved canals or ‘gullys’ are charming and picture-perfect. You can see stacks of split firewood lined at the flat roof of every house.
Besides the picturesque beauty, Marpha is also famous for its delicious apples. No wonder it is also known as the ‘Apple Capital of Nepal.’
The village is also famous for its Marpha brandy, apple jams, and apple pie.
iii. Chhairo Gompa (Monastery)
Chhairo Gompa lies on the Annapurna trekking route from Pokhara to Jomsom. It falls on the south side of Marpha village. Visit this monastery while you are at Marpha as it is only 20 minutes away from there.
This Gompa houses a bamboo idol of Guru Rimpoche and also has wall paintings. It also has Thangkas (frescoes) of Buddhist gods and goddesses painted by the founder – Lama Chhiwang Thilen.
You will also see several small statues of Chhairo Gompa’s past lamas. There is a lifelike clay image of the Gompa’s founder, too.
iv. Muktinath
While Mustang invites half of its visitors for trekking, half of them come here to visit Muktinath. It is one of the principal pilgrimage sites sacred to both Hindus and Buddhists.
Located at the foot of Thorong La mountain pass in Mustang, Muktinath is also one of the world’s highest temples.
An attraction at the Muktinath is the 108 water sprouts. There is a belief that walking under all the 108 water sprouts will cleanse your soul and free you of your sins.
Other attractions are the ancient Narsingh Cave. It houses Padmasambhava‘s statue, monasteries, and the Jwalamai temple.
You can also see the stunning view of the surrounding landscapes of Muktinath.
The Ranipauwa Bazar at Muktinath has many hotels, lodges, and inns. They host many devotees, so if you are looking for one, this is a place to go.
How to reach Muktinath?
a) You can trek your way up to the temple from Jomsom. You don’t need any special trekking permits for it.
b) You can also take a bus from Beni to Jomsom early in the morning. This way, you will reach Muktinath by noon.
c) You can take a 2-hour jeep drive from Jomsom as well.
v. Kagbeni
Kagbeni is a medieval village in Lower Mustang that acts as a gateway to Upper Mustang. It lies between the trails from Jomsom to Lo Manthang.
Mustang, especially the Upper Mustang, is highly influenced by the Tibetan culture. However, among the villages in Lower Mustang, Kagbeni has the most Tibetan influence. You can see that in the culture of the people and the ambiance of the town.
While you are here, learn the background of this abandoned village. The history of Kagbeni has lots of legends.
Its history consists of stories about demons, power conflict, and the banishment of Lo’s prince. It will keep you intrigued on your visit to Kagbeni. You can also hike to Lungfu Cave, which is a sacred site for Buddhist pilgrims.
Also, visit Kag Chode Thupten Samphel Ling Gompa, a beautiful Buddhist monastery. The Gompa displays bronze icons of Sakyamuni Buddha with his disciples and divinities. Plus, the excellent Thangkas and woodwork are something you should not miss here.
Apart from these, you can wander around the mud houses and ancient Buddhist Chhortens at this old-age village. Do take a look at the two Khenis (ghost eaters) that reflect the villagers’ old animist beliefs.
If you are into archaeology, go to Phudzeling. It is an important archaeological excavation site. This site contains a lot of Mustang history.
Lastly, be a part of at least one of the four annual festivals at Kagbeni. The festivals are a great way to experience the culture of the village. You can enjoy feasting on the food and drinks with the locals as well.
a) Chhungu (New Year): January
b) Dhajyang: April/May
c) Fangel: August
d) Yartung: August (full moon day)
vi. Kag Khar Ruined Palace
Kag Khar Ruined Palace is the ruined palace of the Kag Khar dynasty, located at Kagbeni. It is an important historical site for Nepal.
It was a significant site during ancient times due to its Salt Trade route. The palace’s ruins symbolize that it was strategically constructed between the two valleys’ junctions: Mustang and Manang.
The fortress walls have holes whose use we can only guess. All in all, exploring this fortress will be a unique experience for you at Kagbeni.
vii. Lo Manthang
Lo Manthang is the hidden kingdom of Upper Mustang. This walled city has a significant Tibetan influence. It is mostly held by an ethnic group called ‘Lhobas.’
Lo Manthang has many places to visit, like temples, caves, and a palace. Besides, the beauty of Lo Manthang is extraordinary, making the tour more pleasurable. It looks like a high altitude desert with greenery. Ever heard something like that?
Tourists love exploring the ancient monasteries, houses, and the culture at Lo Manthang. One of the places to explore is the Royal Palace of Mustang. The palace was home to the Kings and his heirs, who ruled Mustang till 2015.
The palace is an integral part of the regional architecture as it was built around the 1400s. Now, the court suffers many cracks from the earthquake of April 2015.
While you are in Lo Manthang, you must visit the four Gompas. They are Jampa Lhakhang, Chodey Gompa, Thubchen Gompa, and Chomprang Gompa.
You should also visit the 12 caves discovered here. The caves have ancient silver and gold paintings from the 13th century and stupas.
Lo Manthang is truly a historic and scenic masterpiece.
Note: The areas of Upper Mustang and Lo Manthang are restricted. You will need a special permit from Nepal’s immigration department if you are not a Nepali.
Obtaining the permit by yourself is impossible. So, you will have to go through a Nepali Trekking Company.
The permit costs $500 per person and is valid for ten days. If you exceed your deadline, then you will have to pay $50 per day.
Best Ways to Explore Lo Manthang
a) Trekking
The best way to reach Lo Manthang is by trekking your way up from Jomsom. This way, you will get to see more of Lo Manthang.
Book your trekking package for a smooth trekking experience.
b) Jeep
If you are not much of a walker and don’t want to spend an extra $50 per day, traveling to this place on a jeep will be okay.
c) Motor Cycle
If you are adventurous and want to be free-spirited, then a bike tour to Lo Manthang will be one hell of an experience. Dirt bikes like Honda CRF and Royal Enfield are best for traveling around Lo Manthang.
viii. Chungsi Cave
There are thousands of sky caves in Mustang. Out of them, Chungsi cave is the most important Buddhist pilgrimage. It is one of the significant highlights of Upper Mustang too.
Chungsi is a natural cave that is also known as Ranchung Cave. People believe that Guru Rimpoche, who introduced Buddhism in Tibet during the 8th century, meditated in this cave.
Besides having religious, medical, and historical importance, Chungsi cave also has a beautiful landscape. It preserves ancient Buddhism culture, which adds more to the peaceful experience.
You should meditate here for spiritual healing.
ix. Chhoser Village and the Jhong Cave
Chhoser is a beautiful village surrounded by red, orange, and grey cliffs. You can walk, pony trek, or drive on a jeep to visit the caves and monasteries of Chhoser.
A day trip to Chhoser Village is a must on your trek at Upper Mustang. The village is famous for its 2500-year-old Jhong cave.
The Jhong Cave holds great historical importance in Nepal. This cave has more than 10,000 human-made caves. It also has five storied caves with more than 40 separate rooms.
After much research, archaeologists have discovered 2000-3000-year-old mummified bodies and skeletons. They also found valuable Buddhist paintings, sculptures, manuscripts, and artifacts.
6. Mustang: Major Activities
i. Trekking
Trekking in Mustang takes you through different landscapes, cultures, and sceneries.
a) Lower Mustang Trek
The Lower Mustang Trek is a perfect trekking destination available all year round. However, March to May and September to December are the best months.
This trek is a part of the world-famous Annapurna Circuit and Upper Mustang trek. The best thing is that you don’t need to issue a special permit to explore Lower Mustang. It is comfortable for solo travelers, families with kids and seniors, as well as a group of friends.
This trek will take you through the beautiful villages of Lower Mustang. Some are Marpha, Jomsom, Kagbeni, Tin, Jharkot, Muktinath, and Lupra.
You will be awestruck by its unique landscape, which is barren yet full of greenery at the same time. Also, not to forget the old villages’ culture and the lifestyle of the people.
Lower Mustang Trek takes you to the highest of 3,710 meters above sea level. You can go on this trek while enjoying your nights at comfortable tea houses found along the way.
b) Upper Mustang Trek
Upper Mustang is also known as the ‘Mini Tibet of Nepal’ because of the region’s similar topography and culture as of Tibet. You will feel like trekking in Tibet while trekking the Upper Mustang.
Upper Mustang Trek is a moderate level trek that is best when done between March and May. This trek will take you to Chogo La (Marang La), where you will reach an elevation of 4230 meters above sea level. You will get to explore the Annapurna region while learning about the monasteries, caves, and palaces.
On your trek to Upper Mustang, you can visit historical villages like Lo Manthang and Chhoser. These villages have remained untouched by tourism and modernization.
• Tiji Festival
Tiji Festival is a colorful Buddhist festival of Upper Mustang. This festival celebrates the victory of good over evil. If you want to attend this festival, then it is best to plan your trek around the Spring Season (June, July, and August).
People celebrate it with prayer chants, dances, colorful traditional costumes, food, and drinks. The whole of the Mustang comes together to enjoy this festival. Being a part of the Tiji festival is an experience you need to have while on your trek to Upper Mustang.
$1600- $3500, depending on your travel agency and your budget.
ii. Day Hike at Chele
Chele gives you a view of the Nepali version of the Grand Canyon. Located at an elevation of 3050 meters above sea level, Chele is a village that offers you one of Mustang’s best sceneries.
After crossing the Kali Gandaki river bridge, you have to walk uphill for 45 minutes from Chele to see the view. A day hike at this place will be one of the best experiences of your trip to Nepal.
iii. Mountain Biking
To fuel your adrenaline, you can now go mountain biking in this mountainous region of Nepal.
Mustang lets you ride on the wild and challenging trails while offering breathtaking beauty and culture. It is best to cycle down from Muktinath to Tatopani.
• From where to hire bikes?
a) Pokhara Mountain Bike Adventure/ MTB Guided Tours and Rentals
Located at Baidam, Lakeside, Pokhara Mountain Bike Adventure will help you select a suitable mountain bike. They can also help fly your bike to Jomsom from where you can ride your bike.
b) Mustang Outback Adventures
Located at Ranipauwa, Muktinath, Mustang Outback Adventures is a Mustang-based mountain bike rental company. It gives you the necessary items like spare tubes and pumps. They will also provide some helpful tips on the routes to follow on Mustang.
iv. Horse Riding Tour
You should put a Horse Riding Tour on your to-do list at Mustang. You should ask your tour guides to arrange a horse riding excursion/day tour from Lo Manthang to Chhoser.
The horses will be tourist-friendly and guided by their masters throughout the way. You can ask how easy or fast you want your horse ride to be as well.
v. Peak Climbing
Saribung Peak Climbing is a newly explored peak climbing destination in Nepal. It is situated at the Damodar Himalayan range in the western part of Nepal.
The climbing expedition enables you to view the topographical variation of Upper Monastery. As challenging as it may feel for beginners, this trekking trail will be relatively easy for experienced mountaineers.
$2425 – $5750 per person
(depending on the company and the itinerary)
vi. Snow Games
Very few people visit Mustang in winter as it is frigid. But, if you visit, you will get to enjoy the snowfall and play the snow games in Mustang. SNOW FIGHT TIME!
Go on a horseback ride around the snowy villages on your winter getaway at Mustang.
7. Mustang: Accommodation
Every tourist has to buy a tour package to tour Mustang. The travel agency will be booking the hotels and lodges according to your need. Do not expect a luxurious hotel with air conditioning and swimming pool facilities.
You can talk to your travel agency if you want to stay in a hotel and lodge room or experience living in a homestay. Homestays are a great way to learn about the place’s culture and daily lifestyle. They are cheaper too.
Below I have listed some of the best hotels at Mustang. If you like them, then you can ask your travel agency to book them for you.
• Luxury Hotels
Royal Mustang Resort
Red House Lodge
• Budget Hotel
Himalayan Paradise
• Homestays
Himalayan Guest House
8. Mustang: Food
Thakali food is the local cuisine of Mustang.
Thakali food consists of the Thali menu. It includes rice, lentils, vegetable curry, non-vegetable curry, pickle, and poppadoms. This Thali is a meal that is delicious, healthy, and keeps you going through the day.
You may find Thakali food all over Nepal, but eating it where it originated just hits differently. Most of the hotels and tea shops at Mustang will provide you Thakali food. You should also try Tibetan bread, Thukpa, and butter tea on your visit to Mustang.
Mustang is famous for its apples of Marpha. The apples will be an excellent trekking snack for you.
You might as well eat some apple pie or drink wine and beer made from these delicious apples. If you want to go more local, try the Marpha drink—local ale made of apples and peaches of Marpha.
If you don’t have a knack for local food, you will find some cafes and restaurants in Jomsom. Other areas of Mustang do not have high-end restaurants. The reason behind it is the government’s restriction to urbanize the majority of Mustang.
Some of the restaurants at Jomsom are:
i. Himalayan Java Gallery Café
ii. Café Apple Bes
iii. The Kailash Hotel

9. Mustang: Trekking Gears
Trekking gears are a must when it comes to Mustang. Mustang is a moderate level trekking site. That does not mean you can just carry a bag and your running shoes or your entire luggage to the trek.
You should only carry what you need, the list of trekking gears are (pg no).
Chitwan is a district that welcomes more than a million tourists (both local and foreigners) each year to visit its national park. Most tourists stay at Sauraha of Chitwan and some at Meghauli, but all come here for one purpose, to see the Chitwan National Park.
The national park is the first in Nepal that was established in 1973 A.D. It was enlisted as the UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1984.
The Chitwan National Park is the most diverse and best-preserved of all of Nepal’s national parks. It is home to a wide variety of animals, from forestry to predators.
Chitwan National Park is the best destination for spotting the endangered one-horned rhinoceros, royal Bengal tiger, monkeys, and over 544 bird species.
Best Season
The best time to visit the Chitwan National Park is from October to early March. It is when the temperature is moderate and bearable.
If you think you can stand the heat, April and May are a good time to spot wild animals gathering at riversides.
January is the coldest month in Chitwan. It is best to avoid traveling to Chitwan during this


Elephant Jungle Safari
Elephant jungle safari is a great way to enter the jungle and observe the wild animals and birds up-close. It is a 1 to 1.5 hours of adventure through the quiet forest where you can hear only the sounds of birds chirping and the wild animals creaking in the grassland nearby.
Most lodges and tour agencies offer elephant safari on their package. You can do the tour in the early mornings, mid-mornings, or afternoons. The safari usually costs between NPR 1500 – NPR 2500 ($13 – $22). The elephants are well trained and carry four people at once.

Elephant bath
Elephant bath is an exciting activity that every tourist needs to try in their lifetime. You can play and dive in the river on the back of an elephant while the elephant takes a bath and splashes water on you through its trunk.
If you do not want to soak in the water, then you can sit back at the Rapti river shores and watch the elephant taking a bath.
The elephant bath costs NPR 200 – $500 ($1.72 – $4.32).

Another best way to view the wild animals and reptiles at Chitwan National Park is by canoeing along the Rapti River.
You can see the crocodiles resting beside the shores. It is a perfect place to carry out wildlife photography as you can see many exotic bird species and other wild animals. Make sure you stay quiet, so the animals are not disturbed.
The guide will give you information on the animals, birds, and reptiles, meaning it is a great way to learn about Chitwan National Park’s wildlife.

4 W.D. Jeep Safari
4WD Jeep Safari is a safer yet exciting way to go into Chitwan National Park’s dense forest. It will be easier to take photos of the animals from a jeep. Nowadays, the animals are accustomed to seeing the jeeps carrying tourists and thus, do not run away when the jeep approaches them.
It is best if you go to the Crocodile Breeding Center after you are done exploring the jungles on your drive.

Cycling is very much popular in Chitwan. You can also go to the national park by cycling, however, going with a guide is recommended.
Cycling lets you get out of the touristy places of Sauraha and into the traditional villages of Chitwan. You can cycle around the agriculture fields and watch the locals carrying out their daily chores.
You can hire cycles at cycle shops that charge on an hourly basis or a full-day basis.

Tharu Culture
When touring Chitwan, it is a must to attend a Tharu Cultural Program in Sauraha or Meghauli. The Tharu people will entertain you with various Tharu dance performances like Stick dance, Fire dance, and Peacock dance.
Some cultural dances are also hosted near a bonfire in the evenings at Sauraha’s hotels.
If you want to learn more about the Tharu community and culture, go on a Tharu village tour.

Hotels in and Around Chitwan
Luxury Hotels
Meghauli Serai, A Taj Safari Hotel
Barahi Jungle Lodge
Tiger Tops Tharu Lodge
Kasara Resort
Mid-Range Hotels
Landmark Forest Park
Jungle Resort World
Barauli Community Homes
Tharu Community Lodge


Bardiya is a district in Nepal that is a part of the Lumbini province.
The sole region behind traveling to this district is to visit the Bardiya National Park.
The Bardiya National Park, called initially Royal Bardiya National Park, was established in 1988 A.D. It is a pristine conservation area in the Terai region that covers an area of 968 square kilometers.
It is Nepal’s most undisturbed national park that houses endangered Royal Bengal tigers and one-horned rhinoceros. It is also home to many other mammals and reptile species.

Best Season


Jungle Walk
Bardiya National Park is excellent to go on a jungle walk. The tour agency or your hotel will provide you with a jungle guide and a wildlife tracker who will help you walk safely and quietly while showing you the hidden wildlife. It is an excellent opportunity for explorers to experience nature.

Bird Watching
Bardiya National Park also has several migratory and resident birds. It truly is a bird paradise where you will find over 400 species of birds.
Jungle Drive
Like Chitwan National Park, you can go on a jungle drive to observe the wildlife on a jeep. You will have an excellent opportunity to photograph the animals as well.

Wildlife Rafting
One thing that distinguishes Bardiya National Park from others is the Wildlife Rafting. Here, you can raft on the Karnali River and sightsee across the park. You will visit places that were impossible to reach by walking or a jeep ride. While rafting, you can also carry out fishing in the river.

Black Buck Sanctuary
This sanctuary houses Nepal’s most endangered antelopes. Visit the Black Buck Sanctuary to see the last remaining blackbucks.

While you are in Bardiya, also visit:
Tharu Culture Museum
Visit the museum to learn more about the indigenous tribe of Nepal and their cultural heritage. You can see the ornaments, equipment, dresses, husking machine, their gods, and food.
It is best if you see a Tharu Cultural Programme while you are here.

Janakpur, also known as Janakpurdham, is a sub-metropolitan city founded in the 18th century by King Janak. This tiny town was once the capital of a powerful Mithila kingdom in ancient times. Still, today it is best known for its temples, which offer a glimpse into ancient India’s material culture.

Best Season
The best time to visit Janakpur is in the Spring season (March to May). The weather is warm, and there is no precipitation. May-August is also an excellent time to visit the city.

Janaki Mandir
The most unusual of these temples is the triple-roofed Janaki Mandir, also known as Nau Lakha Mandir. It was built in 1898 A.D in the center of Janakpur.
The Janaki Mandir is architecturally pleasing. The temple has a flower-covered statue of Sita and also the sculptures of Rama and his brothers Lakshman, Bharat, and Satrughna.
Rama Sita Bibaha Mandir
Right next to the Janaki Mandir is the Rama Sita Bibaha Mandir, where Rama and Sita got married.
You can also visit Ram Mandir, the oldest temple in Janakpur, built by General Amar Singh Thapa.
You should see the sacred ponds: Dhanush Sagar and Ganga Sagar and watch the pilgrims performing rituals and bathing in it as a part of their belief.

Illam is a small district in Nepal that tourists visit as an escape from city life. It is 600 kilometers away from Kathmandu and has greenery all around. It has developed in recent years but remains a small town at heart, with all the benefits and challenges.
The people of Illam are warm and welcoming to all. Illam is known for its tea. The district is covered with tea bushes and plantation areas. Enjoying this landscape’s views made up of tea gardens, and dense natural forests is a soothing experience.
Besides these, Illam also has many places to offer.

Best Season
The best time to visit Illam is between October-December or from February- April. Even though Illam has good weather all year round, avoid the monsoon season as the heavy rainfall would disturb your touring plans.
Places to Visit
Sandakphu is a mountain peak located at the border between India and Nepal. It is the highest point of the ridge. You can visit its small village atop from where you can see the views of four of the world’s highest mountain peaks.

Shree Antu
Shree Antu is a town in Illam which is renowned for its beautiful sunrise views. Besides, its tea gardens are also an exciting place to stroll around.
While you are here, visit the Shree Antu Pokhari and the view tower situated atop the Shree Antu Hill.

Kanyam, located at the Suryodaya Municipality of Illam district, is the most beautiful eastern Nepal place. Kanyam is renowned for the vast green tea gardens, which also serve as picnic spots.
Due to such natural beauty, Kanyam is also known as the “queen of eastern Nepal.”

Tumling is a small settlement in Illam that lies at an altitude of 2970 meters. It is a beautiful place that is inhabited by the Gurung tribe.
Tumling mesmerizes every tourist with its clean environment and beautiful mountain views. It is an excellent place for a night’s stay if you plan to visit Darjeeling, India.

CHAPTER 18: Dharan
Dharan is a city in the Sunsari district established in 1958 as the fourth municipality of Nepal. It is located 219 kilometers away from Kathmandu and lies in the foothills of the Mahabharat range.
The best thing about Dharan is that it is a charming city that is known for its temples, cleanliness, views, and street food. What makes the city better is that it was helped to develop by the people residing there.
Dharan is inhabited by people of Mongolian tribes like Rai, Limbu, Tamang, Gurung, Newar, and Magar.

Best Season
The weather in Dharan is constant. Travelers can visit it all year round.
However, the best season to travel would be Spring or Fall as the weather is dry and less humid.
Summer (May-August) has high temperatures and rainfall, and there won’t be snowy mountains to sightsee.
However, the Winter season is a delight for trekkers and mountaineers as the views are breathtaking during this time.

Places to Visit
The Temples
Dharan has many pilgrimage sites that the locals and tourists visit. The most famous ones are Budhasubba, Pindeshwori, Dantakali and Bishnu Paduka.

Danda Bazaar
While in Dharan, stay at Dandabazaar’s homestay. Danda Bazar is situated at the height of 6,000 feet above sea level and is a perfect spot for breathtaking sunrise and sunset views.
You can also visit Kailash Danda and Dhwaja Danda from this place and see the clearer views of the Kanchenjunga, Kumbhakarna, and Makalu peaks.

Bhedetar is a famous tourist destination, situated on a beautiful hillside about 15 kilometers away from Dharan. This place marks the beginning of the Himalayan foothills and is the best spot to view the scenic beauty of Dharan. It would be best if you stayed at a lodge in Bhedetar as they provide beautiful views.
You can also paraglide from Bhedetaar to Dharan.

Dharan Clock Tower (Ghantaghar)
Dharan Clock Tower is what defines the identity of Dharan. Located at Bhanu Chowk of Dharan, the clock tower was financially aided by the Dharan Hong Kong Manch, a Nepalese immigrant forum.
The tower is 76.5 feet high, and almost 50 people can climb and view the city from the top.

The Parks
If you want to have a laid back day, there are many parks like Hariyali Park, Saptarangi park, and Yalamber Park to have a picnic. You may even see wild animals in some of these parks.

Solukhumbu is a district that borders China and the Tibetan region of China. It is the most visited tourist site as it is the home to some of the world’s highest mountain. Mount Everest, the highest mountain in the world, is located in this region.
Since it is located at a high altitude and comprises of the highest peaks, it is no doubt that Solukhumbu has the best mountain scenery in the world. The district invites many trekkers to explore its vicinity, be it the mountains or the alpine lakes.

Best Season
The best time to visit Solukhumbu is in the Spring season (March to May) or the Autumn season (September to November). Summer begins from May-end to June is also an excellent time to go to Solukhumbu.

These are the months when the weather is dry, and warm. The skies are clear, making it best to view the beautiful Himalayan ranges and rhododendron forests while trekking through the trails to reach the Gokyo Lakes or the Everest Base Camp itself.

Monsoon season (July to August) is when the region faces heavy rainfall making the trails wet and slippery. Also, there are a lot of flight cancellations to and from Lukla. Winter starts in November and hits its peak in January, covering the trails with snow.

Monsoon and Winter are the most challenging times to visit Solukhumbu; however, if you are looking for sheer adventure, these months will be worth it.

Places to visit
Everest Base Camp
Everest Base Camp is the world’s most epic destination, and the trek to it is the most popular one. Trekking to the base camp of the world’s highest peak is a significant achievement, and not everyone can do that.
Trekking the Everest Base Camp lets you explore the Himalayas’ challenging trails, all the while presenting you with jaw-dropping scenery of the mountains, icefalls, and quaint Sherpa villages, which are all so picturesque.
You will be trekking through the traditional Sherpa villages with well-carved buildings and beautiful views like Namche Bazaar, Khumjung, and Dingboche. Not to mention, you will be crossing a lot of suspension bridges.
You will see stunning mountain views of Everest, Lhotse, Ama Dablam, and more along the trekking route.
The trek not only takes you to Kala Patthar — the best spot for sightseeing has a challenging uphill route, but it also rewards you with its stunning 360-degree mountain view.

Sagarmatha National Park
The Sagarmatha National Park is a fascinating site enlisted as the UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1979. It is surrounded by the tallest mountains and glaciers and houses many rare species. The national park is renowned for housing snow leopards, red pandas, and musk deer.
It would be best if you trek your way to the national park.

Tengboche Monastery
Tengboche Monastery, also called Dawa Choling Gompa, is the most famous religious institution in Khumjung village of Solukhumbu. It is situated at 3,687 meters, in front of Mount Ama Dablam. You can partake in the monastery tour that is conducted every afternoon.
Visit this monastery to see the residing Rinpoches and get blessed by them.
You should also attend the Mani Rimdu festival, which takes place every October. There will be prayers, songs, ritual dances, and food!

Namche Bazaar
Namche Bazar, known as the ‘Gateway to Mount Everest’ is the Sherpa capital village with numerous teahouses, restaurants, and bars. Some shops sell groceries and even mountaineering equipment.

Namche Bazar is the last spot where ATMs are available.

The vibrant village’s sky-high cliffs and deep canyons add to the region’s scenic beauty. The town has numerous ancient monasteries too.

At Namche, you will see many animals like yak, mountain goat, blue sheep, and birds like Pheasant and griffin vultures.

Lukla is known for having one of the world’s most dangerous airports, The Tenzing Hillary Airport. But Lukla has more than that to offer.
Lukla is a town that hosts numerous trekkers with lots of accommodation and eatery options, all with a view.
The town also has many shops selling trekking equipment and gear. You can get yak-hair gloves and North Face jackets for cheap.
Lukla sure is a paradise start to the Everest Base Camp trek.
Gokyo Lakes
Located at an altitude of 4,700-5,000 meters above sea level, Gokyo Lakes are beautiful oligotrophic lakes that are also the world’s highest freshwater lake system.
The lakes offer majestic views of its surrounding mountains. Besides trekking to the lakes, going on a helicopter trip would also be an excellent way to sightsee the lakes and the mountains.

Langtang is a village located in the Rasuwa district that lies on the northern side of Nepal. It is regarded as one of the most beautiful villages in the world. Trekking Langtang is viewed as the best activity for every nature lover.
You will be staying at the homestays and guesthouses of Langtang village. The views of the stunning landscapes, the culture, and the heartwarming hospitality make every trekker feel welcome here.
By trekking in the Langtang Valley, you will also be financially supporting the local people of Langtang who were affected by the massive earthquake of 2015.
You will start your Langtang Trek from Syabru Besi- a small town in Langtang and walk through dense forests, alpine meadows, and yak pastures.
The major highlights of the trek will be your visit to a Buddhist monastery named Kyangjin Gompa and your hike to the top of the Kyanjin Ri peak. From Kyanjin ri, you will see 360-degree views of the mountains of the region.
If you do not want to trek, then you can go on a helicopter ride from Kyanjin and observe these magnificent views.

Besides trekking just the Langtang Valley, it is a good idea to tour it’s national park too. Established in 1976, the Langtang National Park is the country’s first Himalayan national park.
It is a beautiful park bisected by the Dorje Lakpa range (6,988 m) from west-east to south-east.
The Langtang National Park has a high diversity with 14 types of vegetation, 18 ecosystems (upper tropical forests to alpine scrub and perennial ice). It houses rare wildlife species like red panda and musk deer.
Not to mention, Langtang National Park is also an excellent spot for bird and butterfly watching.
Trekking in the national park will show you the views of magnificent mountains and rhododendron forests.
Gosaikunda Lake
The Langtang National Park houses the Gosaikunda lake. It is an alpine freshwater oligotrophic lake that is also Nepal’s fourth protected area. The lake has 108 ponds around its areas like Bhairavkunda, Saraswati kunda, Chandrakund, Suryakunda, and Sudhkunda, to name some of them.
Situated at an elevation of 4,380 m, the Gosaikunda Lake has spiritual as well as natural importance.
According to the Hindu belief, Gosaikunda was home to Lord Shiva and his wife, Parvati. It is believed that Gosaikunda originated after Lord Shiva thrust his trident to extract water from a mountain to calm his burning throat. Buddhists have equal importance to this lake.
Besides this, Gosaikunda has a magnificent scenic view. The blue lake becomes an ice ring in winter and looks equally beautiful.

Best Season
The best time to visit Langtang’s vicinity is from September to mid-December, then March-May. These are the times when the weather is warm and stable. Your walk becomes pleasant due to the blue skies and clear mountain views.


Shuklaphanta National Park is situated in the Terai region of Nepal that has vast grasslands, forests, tropical wetlands, and riverbeds. Established in 1976 AD at Sudurpaschim as a wildlife reserve, it was recently renamed a national park in 2017.
The national park used to be the Nepalese royal family’s favorite hunting place before it became a protected area. The vicinity has not been explored entirely, and thus, researchers and zoologists still visit the park as much as tourists do.
Shuklaphanta National Park has the most extensive grassland in the Far Western Region of Nepal. It houses the largest population of swamp deer (2,000+). You will see many wildlife species like tigers, rhinos, wild elephants, and crocodiles.
This national park is also the best place for bird watching. There are over 423 recorded bird species in Shuklaphanta National Park.

Best Season
The best months to visit Shuklaphanta National Park is from October to February. The weather will be pleasant as the monsoon rains would have just finished bringing the autumn season in motion. These months are best for sightseeing wildlife.

Rolpa is an underrated destination for travelers who are seeking to explore the hidden paradise. Located west of Kathmandu, at the Lumbini province, Rolpa is a district isolated by Nepal’s mountains and green hills.
Rolpa is a hidden gem that has fantastic landscapes and culture. There are several temples to visit that become vibrant during the festival season.
Rolpa’s neighboring districts are equally beautiful to travel to. It has Dang to its south, Pyuthan to the east, Rukum to the north, and Salyanthe to the west.

Best Season
The best time to visit Rolpa is from October to December or February to April. It is best not to travel to Rolpa during the winter season as it can get freezing.

Places to Visit
Dhorpatan Hunting Reserve
Established in 1987, Dhorpatan is the only hunting reserve in the country. It covers three districts: Rukum, Myagdi, and Baglung. As per the records, the hunting reserve has 18 species of mammals, 58 plant species, 137 bird species, and two reptile species.

The Guerilla Trek
Guerilla trek is a recently introduced activity that takes you to the places where the Maoist cadres trained and lived for a great deal of time. Your trek will begin from Beni and ends at Sulichaur, and pass through the Dhorpatan Hunting Reserve.
The trek presents you with scenic views of the landscapes. You will see the Jaljala pass and mountain peaks like Api, Saipal, Dhaulagiri, Annapurna and more. The Guerilla trek also lets you meet the ethnic groups of Rolpa like Thakalis, Chhetris, Tamangs, and Magars.

Thawang is the most beautiful village in Rolpa, known for its beauty and history. Thawang village was the settlement of Maoist insurgency with over 300 families giving shelter to the Maoist leaders and their armies. Houses were burnt, and 33 locals from this village lost their lives during the civil war.
Currently, the village is a peaceful place with lots of greenery that makes every traveler feel calm.

Gadhilek is a place located at the hilltop of Southern Rolpa that has historical and religious importance. Ghadilek has a fort made by the Chaubise kingdom. Locals have also constructed a view tower where you can see the beautiful views of the Annapurna range, Sisne Himal, and the valley.
Religiously speaking, stories have it that Gadhilek was the birthplace of Lord Swargadwari of Pyuthan.

Located 347 kilometers east of the Kathmandu Valley, Koshi Tappu Wildlife Reserve is a protected area covering 175 square kilometers of wetlands in Sunsari, Saptari, and Udayapur districts. The wildlife reserve has mudflats, reed beds, and freshwater marshes in the Sapta Koshi river’s floodplains. It also has riparian forests and grasslands.
The Koshi Tappu Wildlife Reserve houses 31 mammal species, 485 bird species, and 200 fish species. The wild water buffalo (Arna), Asian elephant, spotted deer, wild boar, golden jackal are some of the mammals to look out for while visiting this wildlife reserve. Ganges river dolphins have also been sighted in the Koshi river.

Exploring the Koshi Tappu Wildlife Reserve gives an insight into the land and water ecosystem of Nepal. While you are here, you can do a lot of activities like:

Boat ride on the Koshi river
Bird watching
Nature walking
Jeep Safari
Visit the villages
Observation Tower
Go for a picnic

Best Season
October-March is the best time to visit the Koshi Tappu Wildlife Reserve as this is when you can witness the migratory and resident birds on the barrage and main channels of the river. These months also do not have rainfall and the extreme heat of the summer season.


Nepal is a nation full of natural beauty but also one of the poorest in the world. The country always welcomes its travelers and offers the best hospitality because they believe in “Atithi Devo Bhava,” meaning guests are god.
As lovely as it sounds, you should pay attention and be aware of where you are going and who you are associating with. Traveling in Nepal means being vigilant when you may be a victim of scams, dangers, and annoyances.
Some of its types are as follows:
Tour Guides Scams

It is crucial to know your guide before carrying out your trip. You may choose to meet them and inquire about them or ask your travel agency to do so.
Sometimes instead of showing you around and giving you the knowledge of the town/city you are visiting, the guides may direct you to shops and cafes that they have a connection with.
They will persuade you to buy the shop’s items to get a percentage of the profit from the shopkeepers.
Prevention: Enquire the tour guides before the trip. Let them know that you want to go to the sightseeing spots first and do the shopping in the end. While shopping, bargain!

Overpriced goods
The shopkeepers in some non-Nepali-owned businesses target western tourists and charge higher prices for their financial advantage.
Prevention: Do not look for your item in one shop only. Many other shops are selling the same thing. Go to 3-4 shops and compare the prices and haggle.
While paying by credit cards, make sure the actual amount you have agreed to pay for the items is entered. Check that no additional amount besides the credit card fee is charged.
While paying by cash, make sure to count the notes loudly to the shopkeeper and calculate how much change you are owed. After you get the change, count carefully. It would be best if you double-checked as sometimes the shopkeeper may make a mistake.

3) Illegal trek operators
Illegal trek operators are a global problem, and Nepal is no exception. You can not trust these unethical operators as they provide a bad experience while marketing heavenly services for you.
Such travel agencies will not provide you with a complete package of services, especially safety measures, evacuation, and rescue facilities.
Tour operators will sometimes ask for you to pay for their lunch and dinner in addition to paying what you have agreed upon. It is a plan to get more money from you.
There are also many cases where the travel agencies have disappeared after taking the payments from tourists.
Prevention: Make sure the trekking agency you are traveling with is registered. Ensure the agency is legitimate by checking if it is registered with the Trekking Association of Nepal (TAAN)

4) Problem with giving
Nepal being a developing country has many beggars on the streets. As much as pity and feel for them and want to give to the begging man/woman with outstretched hands, DO NOT FALL FOR THE PREY.
Sometimes you can give them some cents; however, some beggars, especially mothers with a child, ask for milk for their baby. They make the tourists buy milk at an inflated rate, and as soon as the tourist is out of sight, she goes back to the grocery and shares the profit with the owner.
Prevention: Open the bottle of milk and give it to the mother. This way, she cannot resell it and has to give it to her child, benefitting the infant.
5) Rescue- Evacuation
Sometimes rescue due to sudden illness or accident is necessary. For this, the registered trekking agency has to implement the actions required to ensure the trekker is helped, using the trekker’s fees.
In some cases, the trekking agency deceives their clients by overcharging for rescues, keeping profits in their pockets.
Prevention: Make sure to know the evacuation prices and rescue with other agencies and make a contract.

6) Marriage for the permanent resident card
As weird as it sounds, some men and women may try to look interested in you and persuade you to marry them. Well, some may be in love, but sometimes they only do it for the visa and the privileges of getting a PR in a foreign country.
Prevention: Do not associate with anyone without knowing their complete background. Or, tell them you want to settle down in Nepal with them to check whether their feelings are genuine or not. If they pass that then, do not let them in your country for at least two years.

7) Fake Illness/Disease
You will be interacting with your tour guides, porters, and drivers throughout your trek or your trip. They might share that their family member suffers from a severe illness, and s/he cannot afford to pay for treatments and tests.
Prevention: As much sympathy as you feel, verify whether the information is accurate or not before giving them the money for the treatment.

8) Transportation fares
Transportation fares are where tourists are highly scammed. It is vital to be cautious while taking a taxi from the airport or any other place. The vehicle riders tend to exploit the tourists as well as locals at times.
Prevention: Make them understand where you want to go and turn on the google map to check the shortcut. Sometimes the drivers choose the longer route to demand high fares.
Ask the driver to use the meter.
9) Marijuana, Hashish
Marijuana is illegal in Nepal. If you are found with it, then you will be sent on a five-year jail sentence.
Prevention: Do not get involved in weed and drugs.
If you are persuaded by someone to take drugs or even to set up partnerships to export goods and services, inform the police in Kathmandu or reach out to the Tourist Police.

10) Other Dangers
Nightlife scams: When you attend a party at some dance bars in Nepal, make sure not to leave your drink unattended as you may be drugged and robbed.
Petty Theft: Petty theft like pickpocketing is not usual but possible. Make sure to keep your belongings close and do not leave valuables at the hotel.
Kidnapping: Do not leave your child out of sight or with people you do not know. There are some cases where the child is kidnapped and sold to a foreign land to work.

Kathmandu and Pokhara have various accommodations ranging from hostels, budget hotels to luxurious five-star and international hotels. You can get a hotel with decent rooms for less than Rs 1500 ($12.90).
You can get the best deals in mid-ranged accommodations that have a wide variety of rooms. These kinds of hotels have deluxe rooms with attached bathrooms, air conditioning, and a TV.
Budget rooms are not bad either. Some have an attached bathroom, while some have a shared bathroom. They have solar-heated showers that will not have hot water in the mornings or on rainy days.
The hotels in the Terai regions also have standard rooms with a fan and a mosquito net. Hotels around major tourist areas like Chitwan and Bardiya have extravagant jungle resorts.
To find accommodation on the trekking trails, you will find lots of tea houses and guest houses. Homestays are also available.
Prices range from Rs 500 ($4.30) – Rs 800 ($6.88) a day. You do not have to carry a tent unless you are trekking in a low-key destination where the population is sparse.
The mid-ranged and five-star hotels charge 13% Value-added Tax and 10% Service Charge. Most of the hotels accept payment in Nepalese rupees in cash or card.

Business Hours
In case you want to get some of your important work done or want to know when the offices will open, here is a list of different offices and their standard opening and closing hours.

9 AM – 1 PM (Sunday – Friday)
9 AM – 1 PM ( Saturday)
9 AM – 3 PM (Sunday – Friday)
10 AM – 12 PM (Saturday) on head offices only
Bars and Restaurants
9 AM – 11 PM
6 PM – 3 AM
9 AM – 5 PM ( Monday – Friday)
Government Offices
10 AM – 4 PM ( Monday – Thursday)
10 AM – 2 PM (Friday)
Closed on tuesday
10 AM – 8 PM

Traveling with Children
Many travelers are touring with children in Nepal. As tricky as it may be, you can successfully enjoy your trip without much hassle if you:
Book a suite with 3-4 beds. Hotels in Kathmandu and Pokhara have rooms that are ideal for families with children.
Inform your travel agency about traveling with children and finding kid-friendly places to hangout.
While walking in Nepal’s streets, carrying your children on a sling is better than pushing a stroller as the road conditions are rough in Nepal.
Eat breakfast at the hotel and lunch at restaurants that have a kid zone.
Buy disposable nappies. It is available in Kathmandu but is costlier.

Customs Rules

Your baggage will be scanned on arrival and departure. There are some of the things you can and cannot bring with you like:
You can bring cash or travelers’ cheques.
You cannot export antiques like statues and artworks. It does not include souvenirs that you buy in local shops. In case there is a doubt, you need to obtain a certificate from the Department of Archaeology, Ramshah Path, Kathmandu. Ph no: 01-4250683


Nepal does not face long power cuts as before. However, carrying a power bank is suggested.
Some sockets in the hotels and cafes are three-round pinned while some have two-pinned as well.

Embassies and Consulates

In case you want to extend your visa to travel to Nepal or need access to travel to other countries, you can find Nepali embassies and consulates of other countries on the website of Nepal’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs ( ) and also in the Department of Immigration ( )
The details of the embassies and consulates in Nepal are as follows:
Australia: Address: Bansbari, Kathmandu | Phone: 01-4371678
Bangladesh: Address: Basundhara 3, Ring Road, Kathmandu | Phone: 01-4390131
Canada: Address: Sorakhutte, Kathmandu | Phone: 01-4387910
China: Address: Hattisar Sadak, Kathmandu | Phone: 01-4440286
France: Address: Lazimpat Rd, Kathmandu | Phone: 01-4412332
Germany: Address: Lazimpat, Kathmandu | Phone: 01-4217200
India: Address: Kapurdhara Marg 336, Kathmandu | Phone: 01-4410900
Israel: Address: Lazimpat, Kathmandu | Phone: 01-4419103
Japan: Address: Lazimpat, Kathmandu | Phone: 01-4426680
Myanmar: Address: Bhaisepati Nakkhu Height, Lalitpur | Phone: 01-5592774
Netherlands: Address: ICCO/DCA office building, Jhamsikhel, Lalitpur | Phone: 01-5553505
Pakistan: Address: Ring Road, Kathmandu | Phone: 01-4374024
Thailand: Address: Bansbari Rd, Kathmandu | Phone: 01-4371411
UK: Address: Lainchaur, Kathmandu | Phone: 01-4237100
USA: Address: Address: Maharajgunj Rd, Kathmandu | Phone: 01-4234000


Food in Nepal is affordable. There are many restaurants and cafes offering cuisines from all around the world.
If you want to go easy on the wallet, try going local and eat at local restaurants, cafes, or street stalls. The best way to get a full stomach on a budget is by eating dal-bhat tarkari (rice with lentil soup and curried vegetables and pickles).

Water and Alcohol

Drink only bottled water which is available in every shop throughout the country. It is better to carry a hydration bladder and purify your water with a SteriPen or purification tablet.
You will be helping reduce mountain waste.
Please do not drink alcohol as it is expensive. Rewarding yourself after a long trek or a trip is fine, but doing it daily will make you go broke.


Nepal is a South-Asian country that supports same-sex relationships. However, it will take some more time to normalize Trans and Queer people in Nepal. Sometimes they do face harassment too.
If you want to educate, support, or want some advice about Nepal’s LGBTQ community, you can visit the Blue Diamond Society,, Ph: 01-4443350


If you plan to stay in Nepal for a longer time, learning to speak Nepali would be helpful. You will get schools offering Nepalese language courses all around Kathmandu.
Courses charge $50 for two weeks. On an hourly basis, they charge $3-$5.
Language centers in Kathmandu and Pokhara are:
Intercultural Training and Research Centre, Keshar Mahal Marg, Kathmandu | 01-4412793
Kathmandu Institute of Nepali Language, Bhagwan Bahal, Kathmandu | 01-4437454
Cosmic Brontosaurus Language School, Pokhara | 01-9846069834


Nepal has no strict rules for photographers and videographers.
The Upper Mustang and Langtang areas will charge a $1000 fee for you to take your camera equipment.
If you want to buy camera equipment, you can get every type of memory card, flash card, and battery in Kathmandu.

How to not get in trouble?

Ask before taking photographs of people and holy men (sadhus).
Taking photos inside the temple is not allowed.
Do not photograph pictures of army camps, checkpoints, or bridges.

Postal Services

The Internet has decreased the use of postal services.
If you want to send a souvenir or parcel to your loved ones, anywhere around the world from Nepal, then:
A 500g package of documents can be sent through FedEx ( or DHL ( They charge $40-$50 to the US and the UK and less in Australia. If you drop your documents directly at their office, you will get a 25% discount.
Sending parcels via airmail takes time and is costly. However, it is faster than seamail.
A 2kgs parcel to the UK/US may cost Rs 1785 – Rs 2185 via airmail. The contents inside the package will be inspected before wrapping.
The maximum weight for sea mail is 20 kgs and by airmail is 10 kgs. The maximum weight for a book post is 5 kgs.

Telephone Service

Telephone services in Nepal work very well to make STD and International Calls. You can make Reverse-charge calls in the UK, USA, Japan, and Canada only.
If you want to make a call and do not have a mobile phone, you can look for hoarding boards/signs mentioning ‘STD/ISD Services.’
Call centers charge around Rs. 10 – Rs 40 per minute for most countries. Internet phone calls charge Rs 10 per minute and are available in Kathmandu and Pokhara only.
Local phone calls cost only Rs 5 per minute.

SIM Cards
You have three options to choose from: Nepal Telecom (NTC), Ncell, and SmartCell. You can get NTC and Ncell sim cards at the international airport.
These SIM cards have a phone call and 3G/4G internet services.
Tourism Information
For tourism information assistance, the Nepal Tourism Board’s tourism hotline will be available. You can either reach them at or their office at Tribhuvan International Airport.
Tourist offices in other valleys are in Pokhara, Bhairahawa, Birgunj, Janakpur and Kakarbhitta.
Some of the essential numbers for tourist’s assistance are:
Tourist Police, Thamel (01-4700750)
Tourist Police, Bhrikutimandap (01-4247041)
Tourist Police, Basantapur (01-4268969)
Tourist Police, Pokhara (61-521087)
Tourist Police, Belhiya (71-520197)
Police Headquarter Operation, Naxal (01-4412780)
Department of Immigration, Kalikasthan (01-4433934, 4429660)
Tourism Crisis Unit (9751044088)
Nepal Tourism Board. Bhrikutimandap (01-4256909)
Nepal Tourism Board, Pokhara (61-465292, 463029)
Himalayan Rescue Association (01-4440292, 4440293)

Airlines in Nepal

Domestic/ International
Nepal Airlines
Domestic/ International

Charter Airlines in Nepal
Air Dynasty
Altitude Air
Fishtail Air
Heli Everest
Kailash Helicopter Services
Makalu Air
Manang Air
Mountain Helicopters
Prabhu Helicopters
Simrik Air

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