Kathmandu - things to do
Posted: Nov 07, 2019
Kathmandu in the crossroad of trans-Himalayan trade route had its fame as the city of fine art and rich culture. The valley in the hidden citadel of the Himalayan foothills nourished several culture and religious practices from the subcontinent, untouched until the date. In the valley, Tantrism, Buddhism and Hinduism coexisted culminating into its own unique spiritual characteristics. While the heritage sites of Kathmandu exhibits the true essence of Vedic civilization, culture and art, the surrounding mountains offer rejuvenating escape into the nature with splendid view the Himalayas.
One can easily spend a week exploring the natural and cultural sites of Kathmandu. Here are the most popular Kathmandu day tour activities.
It is said that ‘In Kathmandu, there are more temples than the houses and more festivals than the days in the calendar’. Temples displays rich architecture, art and philosophies. The hidden courtyards of the old quarters exhibit timeless culture and rich artistic heritage. Seven groups of Newari pagodas, palace wings, pavilion, sunken water spouts and monasteries make Kathmandu an UNESCO Heritage site.
Walking through the backstreets of modern Kathmandu is a pupil-dilating experience. Visit of all of the seven groups of monuments take two full days.
Day hike from Kathmandu
Kathmandu is a valley in the foothills of the Himalayas. The verdant surrounding hills offer several day hikes through the protected forest to the scenic view points. The ridge top of the surrounding hills of Kathmandu offer panoramic view of the central Himalayas. Tamang people lives around Kathmandu valley. Tamangs came from Tibet Before Buddhism went there, some 1,000 years back. They still practices shamanism and animism mixed with Buddhism. A day hike from Kathmandu passes through some of the charming Tamang villages. With the 144 sq km Shivapuri national park, most of the forests around Kathmandu are well protected. About 500 species of birds have been recorded in Kathmandu valley.
The most popular day hikes goes to Shivapuri hill at 2,750 m, Nagarkot at 2,100 m and Nagarjuna hill.
Special interest tour
Kathmandu is also a great place to do a day Yoga and meditation retreat, Buddhist tour, traditional art and craft and cooking class. The medieval towns still have workshops where one can see artists sculpting out of metal, stone and wood. Making clay pots has been profession of families in a neighborhood of Bhaktapur. There are also schools to learn traditional Buddhist Thanka art.
Adventure trips from Kathmandu
In a day trip from Kathmandu, one can do a White water rafting in Trishuli and Bhotekoshi Rivers. There are also Paragliding and Bunjee jumping day trips from Kathmandu. The one hour Everest sightseeing flight from Kathmandu is the best way to see Mt Everest and other Himalayan peaks east of Kathmandu.
Short trek around Kathmandu
The best short trek from Kathmandu goes from Sundarijal to Chisapani in the northern rim of Kathmandu valley. The trail then follows the ridge to the most popular Nagarkot hill station. Kathmandu is also a base for many multiday trekking in Langtang national park. Langtang national park is just about 18 km crow flying distance away from Kathmandu. The 1,710 sq Langtang national park is the third popular trekking region in the Himalayas.
I am an adventurer from the Himalayas of Nepal. I love exploring new places, reading no fiction books and writing travel journal. Here is my Nepal Tibet Bhtutan tour blog.