If you’re looking for an adventure this year, then Nepal should be at the top of your list. With the breath-taking Himalayas and Mount Everest, beautiful lakes, diverse wildlife and its unique culture, Nepal has a lot to offer. In fact, Nepal’s government has declared this year as Visit Nepal 2020, with festivals and events planned throughout the year. As you make your plans, be sure to indulge in some of these festivities during your journey.
Here are our top must-see stops along your trip to Nepal:
Kathmandu. As one of the main stops along the ancient Silk Road between Europe and China and Nepal’s capital, Kathmandu is most likely your first stop on your journey to Nepal. Kathmandu is known for its medieval temples, public squares, monasteries and monuments. While here, visit Swayambhu, the ancient “Monkey Temple”, where you can climb the steps and see the panoramic views of Kathmandu Valley. an ancient temple that is often called the “Monkey Temple”. You’ll also want to take a stroll around the markets at Thamel to do some shopping. And no trip to Kathmandu is complete without visiting Durbar Square, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and is one of three royal palaces in the area. Here, you can see home to palaces, temples and courtyards that tell the story of Kathmandu and the surrounding area.
Bhaktapur. A sister city to Kathmandu, Bhaktapur closely resembles what it must have looked like during medieval times. In fact, if you want to see Nepali culture and heritage up close, Bhaktapur is the place to do it. Another UNESCO World Heritage Site, you’ll see hundreds of examples of Newari architecture throughout the city. Make sure to stop by the Nyatapola Temple with its 5-tier roof. Climb to the top and look out over Taumadhi Square and the surrounding hillside.
Boudhanath Stupa. The Boudhanath Stupa is one of the oldest and largest stupas – or dome-shaped Buddhist shrines – in the world. Built in the 14th century, it has become a beacon for Buddhist belief and the center for Tibetan Buddhism, drawing visitors and pilgrims from all over the world.
Mount Everest Base Camp. For the adventurer, no trip to Nepal would be complete without glimpsing Mount Everest. While trekking to the summit may be a stretch, many can hike to its base camp to get a glimpse of the peak. If you want to see Mount Everest but don’t want to hike, consider taking a helicopter tour or even a driving tour up to Nagarkot View Tower or Chandragiri Hill. Both options aren’t quite as close as the base camp, but the early morning tours should give you a clear view of the mountain.
Lumbini. A little off the beaten path, but well worth the trip is Lumbini, the birthplace of Siddhartha Gautama, the historic Buddha, known as Buddha Shakyamuni. Visit the Maya Devi Temple (believed to be where Buddha was born), the Lumbini Monastic Site, the Myanmar Golden Temple, and the World Peace Pagoda. And don’t miss the Ashokan Pillar, built in 249 BC by Emperor Ashoka of India to commemorate not only his visit but also the birthplace of Buddha.
Chitwan National Park. Another UNESCO World Heritage Site, Chitwan National Park is situated at the base of the Himalayas and is home to the single-horned Asiatic rhinoceros as well as the Bengal tiger. You can go on a walking safari through the park, or if you are less adventurous, take a jeep safari to see the unique flora and fauna that the park has to offer.
Nepal is the place to visit whether you want an adventure or to indulge in the culture and history of the region, and Luxury Destinations Concierge is ready to help you plan your trip. Give us a call at (805) 236-4437 to get started.
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