Nepalese Culture, Beauty & Village Walks
Route : Kathmandu Newari Village of Bandipur Pokhara Kathmandu
Arrive Kathmandu / City Tour
This morning, arrive Kathmandu, the beautiful capital city of Kingdom of Nepal. Upon clearing airport formalities, transfer to your hotel, take some rest and freshen up.
This afternoon, visit Boudhanath Stupa, meaning the ‘Lord of Wisdom’. This Tibetan Buddhist monument is the largest stupa in Nepal and one of the largest in the world.
Also visit Pashupatinath Temple, a temple dedicated to Lord Shiva and one of the most sacred Hindu shrines in the world, on the banks of Bagmati River. Although only Hindus are allowed inside the temple, visitors can clearly see the temple and the activities performed inside, from the eastern bank of Bagmati River.
Discover Kathmandu (with excursion to Bhaktapur (18 Kms / 30 Mins – one way)
After breakfast, visit Swayambhunath Stupa, one of the world’s oldest Buddhist chaityas, acclaimed to be more than 2500 years old. Situated on a hillock, 3 kms west of Kathmandu this is one of the holiest Buddhist sites in Nepal.
Later this morning, drive to Bhaktapur, which was the former capital of the valley, and was once a flourishing city on the trade route to Tibet. Today, Bhaktapur is like an open air museum with large areas open to pedestrian access - it is a store house of mediaeval art and architecture. Interesting places to explore include the renowned Durbar square, Golden Gate at the Palace of 55 Windows, Potters square which houses the elephant headed Lord Ganesha temple who is believed to be the patron of potters in Nepal. Bhaktapur houses a variety of Hindu and Buddhist temples including Nepal’s largest Shiva Linga. You may also see artisans engaged in Bhaktapur’s traditional crafts of pottery and weaving.
On your way back to Kathmandu, visit the Patan Durbar Square. Patan is known for its museum, temples and superb craftsmanship of its artisans. Patan Durbar Square has been acclaimed as one of the finest urban streetscapes in the world.
Drive Kathmandu to Bandipur (150 Kms / 5 Hrs)
Early in the morning embark on your drive to Bandipur to experience mountain village life set amidst majestic Nepalese peaks. As you approach Bandipur, you feel like travelling back in time - the streets are narrow and cobbled and lined on both sides with the traditional wooden Newari houses. The village offers spectacular panoramic views of the entire Annapurna Range plus the peaks of Dhaulagiri, Manaslu and Langtang.
Upon arrival, check in at your hotel and freshen up.
This afternoon, visit the famous Sidhha Cave, discovered only in 1987. Filled with natural artworks created by the stalactites and stalagmites, this is believed to the largest cave in Nepal. Siddha Cave is situated just above the cliff of Bimalnagar, from where it is a 30 minute climb. If you are up for walking, the cave can be reached from Bandipur after 90 minutes of easy walking.
Day in Bandipur
This morning, enjoy views of snowy peaks of the Annapurna range. After breakfast, embark on a short hike (2 hours) west of Bandipur, to the village of Ramkot. As we proceed towards the village, the hills become greener and more rugged with some steep cliffs, rocks and beautiful terraces. Excited villagers will follow you shouting 'Namaste'! You get an opportunity to observe local village life and interact with the locals.
Later this afternoon, visit Thani Mai Temple, perched on a hilltop with fantastic views over the mountains and the town. Stroll around the main bazaar road and also visit the Bindabasini temple, which is home of Bandipur's patron Goddess Durga and decorated with intricate woodwork carvings.
Drive Bandipur to Pokhara (80 Kms / 2.5 Hrs)
Enjoy the morning at leisure in Bandipur.
Later, embark on a scenic drive to Pokhara. Surrounded by beautiful snow-capped mountains, with a magnificent lake of crystal-clear Himalayan water, Pokhara is a serene hill town in the foothills of Himalayas. Pokhara offers fascinating view of Annapurna range including the fish tail peak of Machapuchare. The locals, called Pokhralis, will greet you with warm smiles and unforgettable hospitality. Upon arrival, check in at your hotel for 2 nights stay.
Day in Pokhara
Rise early this morning, for a short drive to Sarangkot, to view a spectacular sunrise over the Annapurna ranges. Later, drive back to Pokhara.
Spend the afternoon exploring the beautiful town of Pokhara, visiting the Devis Fall and the nearby Gupteshwor Cave popular for the natural artwork forms made of limestone deposits. Later in the afternoon, enjoy a boat ride in Phewa Lake, the second largest lake of Nepal, offering splendid views of the surrounding Himalayan ranges.
Drive Pokhara to Kathmandu (210 Kms / 6 Hrs)
After breakfast, drive back to Kathmandu. Check in at your hotel and freshen up.
This afternoon visit Kathmandu Durbar Square, the historic seat of Nepalese royalty built between the 12 - 18 centuries. The Durbar square is famous for its exquisite architecture, museums, temples and artistic embellishments. You also get an opportunity to buy some interesting souvenirs here.
This morning you will be transferred to the airport to catch your flight back home