Places to Visit in Nepal
Combining natural beauty, cultural heritage and a rich history, Nepal is one of the most culturally appealing places in the world. Historical cities and temples are surrounded by the broad mountain ranges that hug the country and run through its landscape. Rich fertile soils reward the land with an incredible and diverse ecosystem, and a wonderful array of ethnicities and cultures await to be discovered. Nepal is a place like no other.
Kathmandu Valley - Kathmandu is the capital of Nepal, with the surrounding valley containing an impressive number of cultural heritage sites, and the valley has been named a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The Kathmandu Valley, located in Nepal, lies at the crossroads of ancient civilizations of Asia, and has at least 130 important monuments, including several pilgrimage sites for Hindus and Buddhists. The valley contains a number of sister cities, including Bhaktapur, which was once the country’s capital. Rich with beauty and cultural significance, the city of Bhaktapur is teeming with archaic artworks and carvings made from wood, stone and metal. Also within the valley are the temples of Pashupatinath. Sat alongside the sacred Bagmati river, these are some of the most important temples of Lord Shiva in the world, and the oldest temples in Kathmandu. To see extraordinary views of the valley, travel to the nearby town of Nagarkot.Panauti, Dhulikhel, and Banepa are satellite urban areas of Kathmandu located just outside the Kathmandu valley.
Koshi Tappu Wildlife Reserve (175 sq. kms); - Just 1 hour flight towards east from Kathmandu to Biratnagar and 2 hrs drive, the Kosi Tappu is one of the best places in Nepal to view migratory and native water fowls; waders and shore birds during the winter months. Many species not recorded elsewhere in the region have been found here. Thousands of birds congregate here in January, February and March before they migrate north when the warm weather begins. Well-qualified nature guides take clients out on walks, jeep drives and boat rides to look for birds and the Arna, wild buffalo found only here in Nepal. We recommend to combine this tour with treks in the eastern hills or with a tour to Bhutan & Sikkim or with a Sunkosi rafting trip.
Chitwan National Park (932 sq. kms); - Just a 5 hour drive from Kathmandu or a 4 hour drive from Pokhara or a 20 minutes flight from Kathmandu, Royal Chitwan National Park is proud to be called Asia?s best managed park and is home to over 50 species of mammals, 55 species of amphibians and reptiles and 525 species of birds. Wildlife that thrive here include; the great one-horned Asian Rhinoceros, Gaur, wild Bison, sloth Bear, four different species of Deer, the Rhesus Monkey and the black-faced Langur, the spotted Leopard, Royal Bengal Tiger, the fish-eating Gharial, the flesh-eating marsh Crocodile and the Gangetic Dolphin among many others. The birdlife too is very rich and varied and a delight for Ornithologists. A number of jungle lodges & camps operate inside and on the periphery of the park. They offer activities such as; elephant back safaris through the jungle in search of wildlife, nature walks, jungle drives to spot animals, canoe rides to see crocodiles & water-birds, tribal village visits etc; In the evenings, slide shows on Nepalese flora & fauna and Tharu tribal folk dances are also held.
Bardia National Park (968 sq. kms); - Bardia National Park situated in western Terai of Nepal is one of largest undisturbed parks in the region. The park is the home of many endangered animals, reptiles and birds - including the elusive Royal Bengal Tiger. A few years ago, under a successful wildlife project several young one-horned rhinos where translocated here from Royal Chitwan National Park. Over the years, Bardia has also been a good place for tiger viewing - a rare event anywhere. Recently sightings of a group of wild elephants have further enhanced the wildlife experience possible in this beautiful and unspoiled sanctuary. A stay in this park is recommended with the combination of a short raft trip down the Karnali and Bheri rivers or with a trek to Dolpo and the Rara lake area in far western Nepal.
Lumbini Travel - Although the location remains under discussion by some, Limbini is widely regarded as the birthplace of the Lord Buddha (the Tathagata). Today a Buddhist pilgrimage centre is being erected, and the site is a favourite amongst archaeologists. The site is regarded as one of the holiest and most sacred spots in the world, and holds a calm serenity that is nonpareil. The predominant source of evidence behind this site’s authenticity is the Asoka pillar, which was constructed in 249 B.C. and was discovered in 1896. The pillar testifies this area as the birthplace of Buddha, and its location within the Terai plains make it both naturally and culturally rich.
Janakpur City - The city of Janakpur is located Southeast of Kathmandu, and is home to many temples and religious ponds. Benefitting from its position at the foot of the Himalayas, the city contains some of the most beautiful architecture to be found in Nepal and is surrounded by vast natural beauty. Located here is the Janaki Mandir, which is a dedication to the goddess of Sita and stands as Janakpur’s oldest temple, and Nepal’s biggest. The intricate building features incredible details, and is an important example of Rajput architecture. In addition to this, the city is home to over 100 sacred ponds, such as Ganga Sagar, and traditional artworks from the Maithili women, the origins of which are mysterious and as ancient as the place itself.
Pokhara Travel - Arguably one of the most beautiful locations in the country, Pokhara is the second largest city in Nepal. The landscape here abruptly changes from green hills to vast sheer mountains, and this creates an environment with views that are truly sensational. Named ‘the jewel in the Himalaya’, this area is a common visiting spot for those wanting to unwind, aided by clean air, enjoy the serenity diffused from the Phewa Lake, and stay at accommodations such as the Fishtail Lodge. Enjoy boating along the lake, visit the Barahi Temple and see the famous World Peace Pagoda – a dome shaped stupa perched on the hilltop, providing stunning views of the surrounding area..
Bandipur Village - Bandipur is one of the new emerging destinations of Nepal in the form of community-based tourism which reserves a splendid variety of natural and socio cultural diversity crammed in its small area. Bandipur hill town is located in Bandipur VDC, Tanahun district, southern corner of Gandaki zone, which is surrounded in Mahabharat range. It is situated south of the Prithivi highway midway between Pokhara and Kathmandu. It is strategically located about 143 km west of Kathmandu and 74 km south east of Pokhara and 7 km of south above form Dumre Bazar of Prithivi highway. A new concept, called eco-tourism, has emerged as a responsible travel to natural areas that conserves the environment and sustains the well being of local people. The global tourism patterns have prompted adventure tourists and eco-tourists to visit new area and spend liberally to new destinations.
Tansen Bazaar - The beautiful town of Tansen sits within the mid-West Nepalese hills and contains quaint houses with traditional Newari architectural influences. Here the temperatures are mild all year round, making it suitable for visiting at any time. Due to the town’s history as an old trade route between India and Tibet, a large bazaar (Makhan Tole) is the town’s commercial hub. The capital of the Palpa district, the town’s history dates back to 11th century AD and is home to a handful of ruins that date between the 15th and 19th centuries. Prominent temples such as the Bhairab Temple, in addition to other sculptures and monasteries are specific to this part of Nepal, making it an important cultural visiting spot..
Lo Manthang - Upper Mustang - Lo Manthang is located in the district of Mustang, which offers a range of exotic cultural experiences. Lo Manthang has only relatively recently been visited by foreigners, and the numbers of visitors to Upper Mustang are still restricted. Due to this, the culture here is almost untouched, making it an incredible site to visit. When visiting, you will most likely walk the direct trade routes from the 15th Century, and explore some of the richest Buddhist culture to be found in the country. The annual Tiji Festival usually takes place in May, and is one of the most important events on the cultural calendar. This three day ritual is centred around the Tiji myth, and is well worth attending if you arrive at the right time. .
Sagarmatha National Park - Labelled a UNESCO site in 1979 and covering an area of 124,400 hectares, the protected area of Sagarmatha National Park (SNP) sits in the Himalayas in eastern Nepal alongside Mount Everest. The awe-inspiring area contains vast mountains aside deep valleys that have been carved into the mountainsides by staggeringly large glaciers. Within the Himalayas you will be introduced to the Sherpa people, who have a rich cultural history and a unique culture. There are approximately 6000 Sherpas within the SNP, and their presence creates a coupling of nature and culture within the park that makes it truly unique. For a memorable stay in comfort, take a look at Yeti Mountain Home in Namache.
Ilam Bazar - Located in the tranquil hills of eastern Nepal, Ilam is famous for its production of Nepal tea, rolling landscapes and unique culture. The gentle slopes of the hills make for an easier exploration than some of the other areas within the country. The municipality of Ilam is also known for its fine cheeses, and has various agricultural exports. Antu Danda is a popular spot for its beautiful views of the surrounding areas, in particular at dusk and dawn for the sunsets and sunrises. An important religious site here is the Gajur Mukhi, which is a carved tunnel containing images of Hindu deities, and sits alongside the Deumai Khola river.