5 things to do in Nepal for the more relaxed traveler
December 1, 2015
Nepal has always been famous as an adventure destination for thrill-seeking adrenaline-junkies looking to run, climb, kayak and ride across the high and lows of the Great Himalaya Trails. But there is another side to the country that appeals to those who prefer to relax and appreciate rather than compete and conquer. Here are five of our favorite activities for the saner traveler:
1. Hop on a mountain flight
You don’t have to hit the trails to appreciate Nepal, but it would be a shame to visit this Himalayan country without getting a closer look at the mountains. Fortunately for the non-trekker, daily mountain flights from Kathmandu make it possible for visitors to enjoy the tallest peaks in the world from the comfort of an airplane seat. Yeti Airlines will even break out the bubbly when you catch your first glimpse of Mt. Everest. (Make sure you get the window seat).
2. Go into the wild
Dramatic changes in geography and climate in Nepal, from the arctic mountain ranges in the north, to the dense tropical jungles in the southern lowlands, has led to a rich wildlife population. With the establishment of National Parks like Chitwan and Bardiya to protect the diverse fauna, wildlife tourism has become a big source of tourism in the country.
Get a close look at a one-horned rhino from the back of an elephant, tempt fate on a walking safari or simply spend the day relaxing in a hammock at one of the jungle lodges. In these parts you’ll find activities ranging from thrilling to chilling.
3. Practice your “Om”
Take a spiritual journey to some of the most significant Buddhist pilgrimage sites in the country. At 6pm on any given evening, join the throngs of worshippers circumambulating the Boudhanath stupa in the Tibetan quarters of Kathmandu, spend a weekend 40 km southeast of the capital exploring the holy temples and shrines in Namo Buddha or traveler farther afield to Lumbini, the birthplace of Buddha.
4. Journey within
Since before the dawn of time the Himalayas have been known to be a source of mystical energy helping to lead devotees to enlightenment. With natural beauty and spiritual environment in abundance, it’s no wonder that the yoga and wellness industry has taken off in Nepal.
Disconnect from worldly demands at one of the many yoga and meditation retreats scattered around the country, and go off in search of your inner zen.
5. Make a Mo:mo
One of Nepal’s best hidden secrets is its delicious cuisine. Kathmandu and quite a few eco-resorts around the valley offer Nepali cooking classes for those who want to bring a taste of Nepal back to their home countries. (Or for those who need a quick fix for that Mo:mo addiction. We’ve all been there). With classes ranging in duration from one day to a week you’ll soon graduate from Mo:mos and traditional dal bhat to making your own masala tea blend and mastering the very tricky (and sticky) business of sel rotis.
(Image credits from left to right: Mountain flight by Eric Larsen; Elephant Safari in Chitwan National Park by Neha Shrestha; A monk lighting butter lamps at Boudhanath stupa by Hiroaki Fukuda; Yoga pose and Mo:mos in the making from GHT image library)Back to MyGHT
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