Kathmandu is the country’s capital and largest city. A somewhat chaotic city, but full of life. It is situated in a bowl surrounded by mountains at an altitude of about 1400m. It combines areas stuffed with buildings with others with single-family houses. Some large avenues always full of traffic and a network of streets and alleys that follow an uncertain pattern. Some tidier areas and others rather neglected. Outside the “Ring Road”, which is like a belt around Kathmandu and Patan, the city continues in a mix of low-rise houses mixed with orchards and fields that have yet to surrender to the onslaught of the city.
Pokhara is the second-largest city in Nepal, but whenever we talk about Pokhara we always talk about the Lakeside district, next to the Phewa-Tal (lake), where tourism is concentrated and where you will find many hotels, guest-houses, restaurants of all kinds and conditions, cafes, bars and live music, shops, bookstores and “german bakery” distributed along the main avenue and adjacent streets, making it very difficult to get lost.
Chitwan National Park is in southern Nepal bordering India. Surrounded by a rural area of fields and farms, Chitwan National Park is a large extension of forest, savannah and rivers with a good concentration of wild animals, including Asian rhinos, different types of deer, birds of all kinds, crocodiles and gharials, leopards and a large population of tigers, although these two species are almost impossible to see.
Bhaktapur is a beautiful and quiet Newar town that you can visit at your leisure. It is full of interesting places and not usually overcrowded with tourists, but it is still early in the morning or in the evening that it has a special atmosphere, as groups do not stay overnight, which we recommend. The Newar tradition is very strong here, so it is not uncommon to find small religious events, usually at dawn or late in the day.
Patan, along with Bhaktapur and Kathmandu, is also a former royal city. Although it is attached to the south of Kathmandu as if it were a suburb, it is an independent city and is quieter than the capital, with a different rhythm and atmosphere. Its Sanskrit name is Lalitpur, which means “city of beauty”. The old part is known as Patan Dhoka. The whole neighbourhood is full of shops selling religious art in bronze or other metals.
Bandipur is a beautiful and small village of old trading houses, some of which have been tastefully renovated and converted into small hotels, restaurants and cafes. It has very quiet tourism and there is no traffic in a large part of the village. In a rural setting, it breathes a lot of local life at a leisurely pace and without too many worries.
To the east of Kathmandu there is an interesting triangle formed by Dhulikhel, Namo Buddha and Panauti. Old villages, Holy temples, countryside life, farms and crops, one important Buddhist Monastery and good views over the Himalayas.
Southern Patan, following the Bagmati River valley, there is a cluster of small villages that are a good sample of the “real” Nepal of the small villages scattered all over Nepal. Amidst fields of crops, red brick houses and carved wood, people busy at their daily work and a pace of life far more relaxed than that of the capital.
Tansen is a village perched in the mountains between Pokhara and the Indian border, so it enjoys good temperatures all year round. Being perched in the mountains, in the morning there is often a spectacular view of the sea of clouds at the bottom of the valley, in what the locals call “the white lake”.
Lumbini is one of the holiest places in the country, as it is the most likely birthplace (there is doubt and uncertainty about this) of Prince Sydharta Gautama or Sakyamuni, known to us as the Buddha and from whose teachings Buddhism grew.
Perece que antes del siglo quinto o cuarto AC ya era un lugar de peregrinación para los fieles ya que se han encontrado restos de templos budistas de estas fechas. Hoy en día atrae a multitud de peregrinos de todas partes del mundo al mismo tiempo que turistas interesados en el lugar.