Want a great trekking experience but have limited time

Traveler looking to visit Nepal in February 2017

As we only have 5 days in Kathmandu, we would prefer to stay in the city, and trek nearby (possibly shivapuri / nagarkot). We want to experience sunrise / sunset, be acquainted with nature, and ideally trek for 3-4 days (if time allows), rather than taking short sight seeing trips to different places.


Mads Mathiasen, a local specialist from Nepal, helped this traveler put together a customized itinerary based on Balthali Village Trek via Namo Buddha and Panauti.

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5-day trip to Nepal

Day-by-day itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Kathmandu, Drive to Nagarkot
Day 2: Trek to Dhulikhel
Day 3: Trek to Namobuddha
Day 4: Trek to Balthali
Day 5: Trek to Panauti – Drive to Kathmandu, Depart for home

Summary of the trip planning conversation

Below are some useful excerpts from the trip planning conversation
Great to read that you are coming to Nepal this month for a short trip! I see that you are interested in some trekking near Kathmandu, see nice sun sets and would like to experience nature.

Have you heard about the Balthali Village Trek? (https://www.kimkim.com/c/balthali-village-trek-via-namo-buddha-and-panauti) That might be just the right trek for you.
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i went to check up on the Balthali Village Trek, but i'm not sure if the nature views would compare to Nagarkot + Shivapuri. Let me know your thoughts? of course i'm only looking at pictures so i cant be too sure.
Also, how much are you guys charging for something like Balthali? It sounds a lot more touristy than local.
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I used to love up in Shivapuri, so know that part very well, it is a great jungle, so if you wanted lots of forest to walk in but not some many views, this is a great place to go!

As for Nagarkot, it is pretty good but other places on the Balthali trek, I actually think has nicer views. I would really recommend this little trek, even if you only did 3 days of it over, driving in and out of Kathmandu every day.

Driving in and out would take hours out of your day each day, as the Kathmandu traffic is not so nice at the moment with road works and lots of digging to put down new water pipes.

If you are trying to avoid most of the tourists, then many of the places on the Balthali trek are far better than Nagarkot. However I would suggest starting you trek in Nagarkot. Maybe drive up there on your arrival day and see some of Bhaktapur on the way and get there in time for Sunset. Then start hiking the next day towards Dhulikhel.

I have been hiking in the Dhulikhel, Namobuddha, Balthali and Panauti area for over 20 years and it has retained great local feel, it is certainly my favorite area close to Kathmandu.

Traveler Review

The trip was well planned! Only thing is i wished that the porter and guide where treated more as guests than employees of the hotel. In our night at dhulikhel, the employees said that our guide & porter could only eat when they ate. While we had hot shower and luxuriously a heater, our guide and porter only had cold water. The disparity was not nice to witness

Mads was patient in answering my questions, proactive, had suggestions to my problems.