- Stay in some of the finest hotels and lodges in the Kathmandu area
- Explore well-preserved Newari architecture in the village of Panauti
- Experience the sacred atmosphere of Namobuddha, one of Tibetan Buddhism’s holiest sites
- Relax amid traditional farming villages with spectacular Himalayan views
|Day 1||Welcome to Kathmandu!||Kathmandu|
|Day 2||Drive from Kathmandu to Jarsing Pauwa, Trek to Nagarkot||Nagarkot|
|Day 3||Trek from Nagarkot to Dhulikhel||Dhulikhel|
|Day 4||Trek from Dhulikhel to Namo Buddha||Namobuddha|
|Day 5||Trek from Namo Buddha to Balthali||Balthali|
|Day 6||Trek from Balthali to Panauti, Drive to Kathmandu||Kathmandu|
|Day 7||Depart Kathmandu|
Day 1: Welcome to Kathmandu!
Flying into Kathmandu, you'll have views over the valley, the Himalaya, and the terraced fields below. After completing customs, a representative will be waiting to greet you outside the airport and to guide you through the initial culture shock of Kathmandu’s narrow, winding streets to your hotel.
Once you've settled in, head out and explore the city. Kathmandu Durbar Square is a great place to start your exploration, where you'll walk through narrow alleyways teeming with small shops, ancient temples, and local restaurants. If you want to stretch your legs, Swayambhunath, the white stupa rising above the valley, is the perfect spot to catch the sunset over the valley.
In the evening, the tourist hub of Thamel is a good place to grab your first meal, with a variety of restaurants to chose from offering both Western and local Nepali dishes.
Day 2: Drive from Kathmandu to Jarsing Pauwa, Trek to Nagarkot
After breakfast, meet your trekking guide in Kathmandu and take a Jeep out to the edge of the Kathmandu Valley. From there, head to Jarsing Pauwa where you will begin your trek of the Kathmandu Valley rim. Explore both well-known and lesser-known sites and enjoy their captivating mountain views.
At night, trek up to Nagarkot. Perched on the edge of the Kathmandu Valley, this mountain getaway town offers views to the north of the Himalaya and includes a sprawling landscape of rural scenery: terraced fields and farmhouses.
Trekking time: 2 hours
Day 3: Trek from Nagarkot to Dhulikhel
Enjoy breakfast with a view before packing your bags and heading out along the ridgeline to the southeast of Nagarkot. Today, you'll pass through community forests and open landscapes with small villages that rely not only on farming and livestock but also on the forest for their daily needs. This is a great chance to get close to the daily life of the people of the villages. It is vastly different from Kathmandu, which is so close in terms of distance, but a world apart in terms of lifestyle.
Trekking time: 7 hours
Day 4: Trek from Dhulikhel to Namo Buddha
This morning, you'll hike to Namo Buddha, which is an easy few hours' walk. Namo Buddha is located 25 miles (40 km) outside the hustle and bustle of Kathmandu. The tour takes you to the Buddhist pilgrimage site situated on the hilltop of Panauti in Kavre District. The main attraction of your tour at Namo Buddha is the Thrangu Tashi Yangtse monastery where young monks study.
Trekking time: 3-4 hours (11 km)
Day 5: Trek from Namo Buddha to Balthali
After breakfast with a nice setting overlooking the mountains, take the morning to explore Tamang Buddhist culture and compare it with Tibetan Buddhism. Taking a short stroll down the hillside you can visit the little stupa at Namo Buddha. This stupa commemorates Siddhartha Gautam’s selfless act of offering his body to a hungry tigress, which is said to have contributed to his ability to achieve enlightenment and, ultimately, Buddha-hood. Learn about the significance of the place and its place in local Tamang culture, before climbing a short distance up to the newly built Tibetan Buddhist monastery perched on the hilltop above the Stupa.
From here, you'll continue on through fields and orchards to the quiet village of Balthali, having a picnic lunch along the way. Here, you'll also have amazing views of the mountains and can enjoy the charm of village life. Even though it’s a steep hike back down into the village after you have dropped your pack in the hotel, it’s worth the effort.
Trekking time: 5 hours
Day 6: Trek from Balthali to Panauti, Drive to Kathmandu
Enjoy breakfast with great views over the valley. Most of today’s trail is on a dirt road, passing beautiful small villages, terraced fields and with those amazing views off to the distance in the north. You finish the trek in the lovely Newari village of Panauti. Enjoy a local meal for lunch and take the time to explore your surroundings.
After lunch, you'll be picked up and driven back to Kathmandu.
In the 13th century, Panauti was the capital of the autonomous kingdom of Banepa and today remains an important historic village in the area. The quiet town is built in the signature Newar style, with pink brick and carved wood, and comes alive every year in September with the Carriage Festival. The old town is wedged between two small rivers with a cluster of important temples at the confluence which is regarded as an ancient place of power as there is an invisible third stream that connects here. Cremations are held at the confluence and a festival is held here once a year in January with every 12 years being of major significance as the third stream is said to be seen at this time.
Trekking time: 3-4 hours
Day 7: Depart Kathmandu
It's time to say farewell to Nepal. Enjoy your last moments in Kathmandu with breakfast in a café, a final stroll through the narrow alleys and templtes, and some final souvenir shopping. A driver will be waiting for you at your hotel to take you to the airport for your return flight home. It's best to be at the airport at least 2 hours prior to departure.