Major Tourism Activities
The 800 km stretch of the Nepal Himalayan is the greatest in the world with eight peaks that rise above 8,000m including the highest in the world, Mt. Everest. Ever since the country opened its peaks to climbers in 1994, the Nepal Himalayan has become a great theatre of mountaineering activity and the drama of success and failure have provided impetus to thousands of men and women to meet the ultimate challenge. The Nepal Himalayan has been an attraction to many people, be they saints, philosophers, researchers or adventures.
The best way to experience Nepal’s unbeatable combination of natural beauty and culture riches is to walk through them. One can walk along the beaten trails or virgin tracks. Either way you are in for an experience for a lifetime. Along with forests of rhododendron, isolated hamlets, and small mountain villages, birds, animals, temple, monasteries and breathtaking landscapes, you will also encounter friendly people of different cultures offering a fascinating glimpse of traditional rural life.
Nepal is a paradise for bird lovers with over 646 species (almost 8% of the world total) of birds, and among them almost 500 hundred species are found in Kathmandu Valley alone. The most popular bird watching spots in Kathmandu are Phulchoki, Godavari, Nagarjun, Bagmati river, Taudaha and so on. Get your binoculars and look forward to a rewarding experience.
Only awe-stricken silence can come close to matching the experience of going on a mountain flight to encounter the tallest mountains on earth. Mountain flights offer the closest possible aerial views of Mt. Everest, Kanchenjunga and the Tibetan Plateau. Mountain flights appeal to all category of travelers and have become a popular tourist attraction of Nepal. For those who are restricted by time or other considerations from going for a trek, these flights offer a panoramic view of the Himalayan in just one hour.
For all those cliffhangers out there, Kathmandu offers a roster of stone walls that make for an experience of a lifetime. Now of late, Rock climbing has become a popular sport in Kathmandu, which offers some really terrific places for rock climbing. Nagarjun, Balaju, Shivapuri and Budhanil Kantha are some of the places where you can try this sport.
Rafting is one of the best ways to explore the typical cross section of natural as well as ethno-cultural heritage of the country. There are numerous rivers in Nepal which offer excellent rafting or canoeing experience. You can glide on calm jade waters with munificent scenery all about or rush through roaring white rapids, in the care of expert river-men employed by government authorized agencies. One can opt for day of river running or more. So far, the government has opened sections of 10 rivers for commercial rafting. The Trisuli river (Grade 3+) is one of the most popular of Nepal’s raftable rivers. The Kali Gandaki (5-5+) winds through remote canyons and deep gorges for five days of intense rapids. The Bhote Koshi (4-5) is 26km of continuous white water and the raging Marshyanghi is four days of uninterrupted white water. The Karnali river (4-5) provides some of the most challenging rapids in the world. The Sun Koshi (4-5), 27km, requiring 8-10 days to complete, is a big and challenging river. Adventurers are provided with world-class services by rafting agents. Agencies here provide life jackets, camping and the standard rafting paraphernalia needed by world-class rafting. An extremely popular sport in Europe, cannoning is now available in Nepal. Cannoning gives you the freedom to explore some of the most ruggedly beautiful, yet forbidden places in the world.
Hot Air Ballooning
Hot air ballooning is very popular with tourists for it affords the most spectacular bird’s-eye view of the Kathmandu valley and the Himalayan ranges towering in the background. On a clear day it’s a superb way to view the Himalayan (from over 6000m up), and the view of the valley is equally breathtaking.
The ultimate thrill of a bungy jump can now be experienced in Nepal at one of the best sites that this sport can boast of anywhere in the world. Nepal’s first bungy jumping site is situated 160m. Over the Bhote Koshi river, inviting you to experience the ultimate adrenaline rush in the surroundings of this amazing place. The jump, at 160m., is staffed and operated by some of the most experienced jumpmasters in the business.
Paragliding in Nepal can be a truly wonderful and fulfilling experience for the adventure seeking. A trip will take you over some of the best scenery on earth, as you share airspace with Himalayan griffins vultures, eagles, kites and float over villages, monasteries, temples, lakes and jungle, with a fantastic view of the majestic Himalayas.
Ultralight aircraft take off from Pokhara and offer spectacular views of the lakes, mountains and villages. This is an ideal way to see life from a new perspective. The choice of Pokhara Valley for ultra-light aircraft is appropriate chiefly because of the proximity of the mountains, and the scenic lakes. For those who wished they could fly birds when growing up, this flight is a must. It might be lonely at the top, but this flight is a must. It might be lonely at the top, but the spectacular view from up high certainly makes it all worth it. Flights are from the Pokhara airport beginning September through June. The flights take place from sunrise to 11 a.m. and from 3 p.m. to sunset every day during these months.
The best way to explore the Kathmandu Valley is on a mountain bike. Nepal’s diverse terrain is a mountain biker’s dream adventure comes true. Mountain biking offers an environmentally sound way of exploring this magnificent country, its landscape and living heritage. There are plenty of dirty roads and trails in Nepal to meet every mountain biker’s wildest fantasy. Mountain biking is specially recommended if you wish to explore urban centers of Nepal such as Pokhara and Kathmandu as well as the countryside. Adventurous souls may plan extended trips to such exotic locals as Namche Bazaar, and western Nepal. You could even do the entire length of Nepal across the plains. Mountain bikes are available for rent by the day or longer in many of the bicycle rental outlets in Nepal and around the city.
National Parks located specially in the Terai region in Nepal attract visitors from all over the world. A visit to these parks involves game- stalking by a variety of means-foot, dugout canoe, jeep, and elephant back. One is bound to sight a one – horned rhino or two at every elephant safari. Besides the rhinos, wild boars, samburs, spotted deer, sloth bear, four-horned antelope are also usually seen. A Royal Bengal tiger may surprise you by his majestic appearance.
Source: Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation, Nepal