Nepal is a small country, tucked between India and Tibet, high up in the Himalayas. It is known primarily as the gateway to Everest but there is so much more to Nepal than the range of mountains that has made it so famous. From stunning treks and swimming in mountains lakes to spotting wild tigers and discovering the Buddhist temples; visit Nepal and you'll find everything you could ever want squeezed into a tiny area, deep in the landmass of Asia.
The capital is likely to be your entrance to Nepal, whether you've arrived by plane or overland. The crazy traffic, tempting street food stands and stone squares lain with drying rice and peppers is a wonderful introduction and yet this city only just scratches the surface of Nepal.
Buddhist temples are dotted throughout the streets as well as many impressive religious sites on the outskirts of the city, including the Pashupatinath Temple, Kathmandu's most significant Hindu temple. This amazing complex is regarded as the most sacred of the temples of Shiva and is the destination of pilgrims from all over the world.
Traffic free Bhaktapur is the jewel in Nepal’s already shining crown. The timeless stone streets wind around the city with temples, shrines and people peering round every corner. The Golden Gate is one of the most important artworks in Nepal and the carvings and pediments showing the ten armed goddess Taleju Bhawani is an intricate masterpiece of Asian art.
The relaxed pace of Bhaktapur is a refreshing change from bustling Kathmandu and sets the tone for the rest of the country – outside of Kathmandu, Nepal is known for its tranquil way of life.
This enormous park is a stunning area of natural beauty with a plethora of wildlife just waiting to be discovered deep in the park. Rhinos, sloth bears, honey badgers and the clouded leopard are just some of the magnificent animals that roam this huge expanse of jungle. If you’re lucky you might even spot the enigmatic Bengal tiger – I did when I was in Chitwan and it remains one of the most humbling and awesome sights of my travels.
The jungle lodges in the area range from 5* luxury to budget basics but you’ll soon forget about your lodgings when you plunge into the wonderful flora and fauna of this beautiful national park.
The small town of Pokhara is nestled in the valley beneath Mt. Machhapuchhare (Fishtail Mountain), right by the glossy Lake Phewa and full to the brim of restaurants, shops, stalls and activities, just waiting to be explored.
Adventure activities are huge here! Paragliding is the big one with flights soaring right off the hills above the town and over the lake, with gorgeous views of the Himalayas and there's plenty to do whether you enjoy hiking or not. The snow-capped peaks of the sacred Fishtail Mountain tower over the town, full of travellers waiting to begin or returning from their long treks. Right in the centre of this lovely nation, Pokhara is a great town to use as a base during your Nepali adventure.
Nepal is one of the best places in the northern hemisphere to go trekking – it’s location up in the Himalayas means there are hundreds of routes from easy day walks to the ultimate challenge of climbing Mount Everest.
Many treks can be booked from Pokhara or Kathmandu when you arrive in Nepal or you can travel with a small tour group and make some friends while you’re at it! We offer a variety of treks in Nepal with a range of difficulty levels.
If I haven't convinced you already, here are a couple more reasons why Nepal is a great country to include on a round the world itinerary... it is completely landlocked which opens up Nepal as a surface sector option on a round the world ticket and you can enter from either China (Tibet) or India. It's also very easy for us to tailor-make a holiday that combines Nepal with either Tibet, India or Bhutan - just ask us for ideas.
It's not possible to do the crossing into Tibet independently; you have to join an organised tour. Although the crossing into India is perfectly feasible, a tour from India that finishes in Kathmandu is usually your best bet as it will take away all the hassle of physically getting to the border via public transport. Once you arrive in Kathmandu you can have as much time as you want to explore the region and head north to the mountains. The Buddhist traditions of Tibet and Nepal are very similar and an overland trip combining the two regions would be a fantastic surface sector to build into your round the world trip.
If you'd like to visit Nepal and need some advice, we can help you plan. Just call us on +44 1273320580 or make an enquiry by email to get going.