You have all heard of the world-famous Everest and Annapurna regions. Sure, you have also heard of historic world heritage sites of the Kathmandu valley and dozens of Nepal’s exotic national parks and hunting reserves. However, there is still so much more the tiny Himalayan country has to offer that will leave you wondering how. Here we have listed 5 other amazing attractions in Nepal, inside and outside Kathmandu Valley to explore.
Sankhu is a historic and ancient Newari town in the north-eastern side of the valley, which was founded between the period of 2nd and 9th centuries. One of the most significant trade routes to Tibet, the town’s entrance is marked with a beautiful blue gate adorned with auspicious symbols. While the city had to bear the repercussions of the 2015 earthquake, it is still home to some of the finest and most exquisite traditional Newari homes. After leisurely roaming through the old city, we can reach the forested hill behind the town which is home to the famous 17th century temple of Bajrayogini temple.
One of the oldest temples in Nepal, it is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, although, possibly the least visited heritage sites in Nepal. Located in north-eastern side of the valley, it is best accessed from Bhaktapur. Built in 300AD, the temple is an epitome of finest Newari architecture style. There is also an in-house museum and couple of other museums on the way to the temple. Although the temple was affected during the 2015 earthquake, exploring the small Newari towns that take us uphill towards the temple is still worthwhile.
At an elevation of 2,400m, Daman is a small hill-top station from where visitors can have panoramic views of some of the world’s tallest peaks stretching from Dhaulagiri in the west to Mount Everest in the east. After travelling about 80kilommeters south-west of Kathmandu on the mountain highway known as Tribhuwan Highway, the entire journey and the destination will seem like a set from a film. The vantage point known as Daman Tower is immensely popular views of the mountains and the quaint villages. Hiking through rural Nepali villages also offer a rare chance to connect with the locals.
Gorkha, located westwards from Kathmandu, is a scenic hill-town of incredible historic significance. At an elevation of about 1,000 meters, the vantage points in Gorkha offer incredible views of the snowcapped western peaks. Other than the hills and mountains, another main attraction of the historic town is the Gorkha Durbar, which was commissioned to be made after successful invasion of Kathmandu valley by expansionist king, Prithvi Narayan Shah. Made in the unique Newar architecture style, the palace attracts thousands of visitors every year.
Khaptad National Park is one of the least known but finest national parks in the country. Located in the far eastern corner of the country, it sees very less numbers of tourists compared to other NPs. Essentially, if you want to rewind in the wild west of Nepal, away from the tourist-packed destinations, Khaptad is the right destination for you. With its rich variation in topography and biodiversity, and quaint Nepalese villages, Khaptad trip will be one of the most enriching experiences in western Nepal.