The mystique of the Himalayas in Nepal has always captivated travellers and adventurers but up until the 1950’s, the borders of Nepal were virtually closed to all outsiders. And when Nepal did open her borders to travellers the first major wave of travellers actually came in the form of hippies, a far cry from the countless who now visit Nepal every year with the hopes of either scaling a mountain or to just trek through the scenic trails of the Annapurana circuit. In addition to thrill seekers, Nepal is also home to some of the most sacred religious sites for devotees of Hinduism and Buddhism, and thus draws a large number of visitors who come specifically to pay homage to and visit religious sites like Lumbini and Pashupatinath.
The reasons for visiting Nepal may differ, but one thing’s for certain and it’s that Nepal leaves an indelible mark on all those who pass through her lands. Here are some of the things to do in Nepal that will surely leave you with an impression too. 🙂
1. Mountaineering and Trekking
With eight of the fourteen eight-thousanders peaks located in the Himalayas of Nepal anyone who’s anyone in the field of mountaineering will always have one eye set on Nepal. So whether you’re looking for the ultimate glory by scaling Everest or a relatively easier trek through the Himalayas, Nepal has it all. In fact, there are many in Nepal who would probably be offended if you visited Nepal without so much as stepping foot on a mountain. 😉 The Annapurna Circuit and Everest Base Camp trek are the more popular routes among trekkers and we highly recommend going for either one.
2. Adventure Sport
In recent years, Nepal has been gaining quite the reputation as a destination for thrill seekers and adrenalin junkies. We’re going out on limb by saying this, but Nepal probably has just about any adventure sport you could think of, all of it with the mighty Himalayas as the backdrop.The setting couldn’t be any better. Some of our favourites are parahawking (yes, you read that right, paragliding with a hawk by your side), bungy jumping, white water rafting, canyoning, mountain biking, canyon swinging, rock climbing and there’s even a zipline that claims to be world’s longest and fastest. Need we say more?
3. A Religious Destination
Nepali tradition and culture are steeped in religion, and with sacred religious sites such as Pashupati for Hindus and the birthplace of Buddha in Lumbini, it’s no wonder that pilgrims from the world over flock to Nepal in throngs. In addition to Pashupati and Lumbini, some of the other popular religious sites include Muktinath, Swoyambhu (aka Monkey Temple) and Budalinkantha. If you’re short on time and only stopping by Kathmandu then Swoyambhu and Pashupati are must visits or you could also opt for Backstreet Academy’s day journey through Buddhism in Nepal.
4. Meeting Locals
Sure, there are a lot of things to do in Nepal and you would probably have a tough time deciding between which himalayan trail to hit or which river to raft down, but we urge you to not leave Nepal without having met the people who inhabit this wonderful country. And at Backstreet Academy, we do just that. So whether you would want to bond with a local over learning to cook Nepal’s favourite dish, getting your hands dirty in a pottery class in Kathmandu or attend a workshop by a master wood carver, it can all be done through the backstreets. 🙂