- Itinerary in Short
- Itinerary in Detail
Trip FactTrip name: NEPAL PANORAMA
Duration: 12 nights / 13 days
Trip activity: Comfort lodge trek - safari
Max. Altitude: 1850m
Best time to Travel : Feb, March, April, May, Oct, Nov
This program has been designated for nature lovers who during a 13day program are willing to discover easy trekking, day hike and safari while staying in the best lodges. Upon arrival in Kathmandu we have put special emphasis avoiding the busy and tiring capital city and have selected quality resorts in the Valley, offering peace and best views of Himalaya. During the three first days you will have a mixed of visit and short hikes always ending in a different, peaceful and charming place such as Hatiban, Lakhuri and the Fort. Then it will be time to reach the capital city of Kathmandu for sightseeing of the rich cultural sites with pagoda-style temples and various shrines dedicated to different local divinities. Although in Kathmandu we have made a point to accommodate you in a very calm and refreshing place at Gokarna Forest Resort. Leaving the capital on next day by flight to Pokhara, your short trek will start exploring the Annapurna Region with stunning views of snow-capped peaks towering above the sub-tropical region. On the way to your safari in the Chitwan National Park of southern Nepal, you will enjoy refreshing at Brigand’s Bend special hotel, matching at its best with environment. During the safari, you will track unicorn rhinoceros and bengale tiger on elephant back. Flying back to Kathmandu you continue the Valley visit.
|Day1||Arrive Kathmandu, transfer to hotel||Hatiban Resort on FB|
|Day2||Bungamati – Kokhana Visit, hike to Lakhuri||Summit Village Lodge on FB|
|Day3||Hike to Bhaktapur, transfer to Nagarkot||LE FORT on FB|
|Day4||Kathmandu Valley sightseeing||Gokarna Resort on FB|
|Day5||Fly to Pokhara, trek 1 > Birethanti||Sanctuary Lodge on FB|
|Day6||Trek 2 > Majgaon||Gurung Lodge on FB|
|Day7||Trek 3 > Dhampus||Basanta Lodge on FB|
|Day8||Trek 4 > Phedi, transfer to Pokhara||Temple Tree on MAP|
|Day9||Transfer to Kurintar||BRIGAND’S BEND on FB|
|Day10||Transfer to Chitwan||Kasara ou Varahi on FB|
|Day11||Safari in Chitwan||Kasara ou Varahi on FB|
|Day12||Fly to Kathmandu, visit||Gokarna Resort on FB|
|Day13||Depart Kathmandu, transfer to airport|
Day 01 Arrival Kathmandu. Transfer to HATIBAN RESORT
Arrival Kathmandu. Inside the airport, having completed the immigration and visa formalities, you go downstairs to collect your luggage and you exit. Outside it’s quite amazing to face so many people holding placard and you will be looking for someone holding your agency placard. Our representative will take you to the vehicle and after checking that everything is ok with visa and luggage, you embark to Hatiban, 22 km away from the airport and about 1 hour drive: first on the ring road till the south of the capital, then on a local road overlooking Chobar gorge, the way out of the two main rivers of the capital. Your resort is situated on a ridge at 1850m. The access is driving up through a pine forest. This resort offers superb views of the Himalaya.
After the lunch a 45mn hike is organized on the ridge till a monastery to enjoy views over the valley and Himalaya.
Dinner and overnight Hatiban Resort.
Day 02 Visit Bungamati – Kokhana and hike to Lakhuri
After breakfast, luggage is loaded into the vehicle. Today we leave Pharping for one hour drive till Bungamati, a wonderful newar village on top of a spur overlooking the Bungamati river. This place is famous for its temple dedicated to Machendranath and for its woodcarver. The area around the temple is worth a visit with local people busy in their daily activities. The village was founded in 7th century AD.
Leaving the place, it’s a 25mn-walk to Kokhana, another beautiful and typical newar village. It’s like a medieval living museum. You can see women spinning wool outside. It’s difficult to realize that the busy capital is just a stone-throw away. After having lunch break here, we drive 45 mn to reach Dhungel, the last point before hiking to Lakhuri. Lakhuri being situated at 1820m altitude, it’s obviously requiring walk uphill but it’s a pleasant and gentle walk through the beautiful landscape around, crossing some typical villages. The beautiful and environment well matching lodge is the reward for the hike.
Dinner and overnight at Summit Village Lodge.
Day 03 Hike Lakhuri – Bhaktapur, Durbar Square visit and transfer to Nagarkot
After a good night in that peaceful place, it’s time to wake up to enjoy the sun rise before having a delicious breakfast. The 3hour-hike will take you to Surya Vinayak near Bhaktapur through the beautiful countryside around. Getting closer to the highway, it becomes much busy. Bhaktapur is one of the three ancient kingdoms of the valley during the Malla era. Her Durbar Square is the best one as well as the city herself: the city has kept her medieval ambiance made of local brick-made houses along stone-paved streets. The Durbar Square is forbidden to cars and trucks and it’s a real pleasure to stroll around looking at the numerous temples and ponds in every corner. The visit starts from the Dattatreya square that was the ancient city center and famous for its wood carved windows. The visit continues through the small and busy alleys reaching the Taumadhi square with its 5-storey pagoda, the highest one in Nepal called Nyatapola Temple. A detour through the potter area takes you to the Durbar Square with its array of temples overlooked by the palace of 55 window built by King Bupatindra Malla. Some free time is given to take pictures around before driving to Nagarkot, a village located about 32 kilometer east of Kathmandu. It is situated on the northern rim of the Kathmandu Valley at an elevation of 2200m. It is one of the most scenic spots in the region, renowned for its sunrise and sunset views of the Himalaya. You can pick Mount Everest out with its snow-topped peak on a clear day as there is an observation tower at the very top of the village’s hills.
Overnight at FORT.
Day 04 Kathmandu Valley visit
Early morning sun rise view. You can see from the Annapurna Range in the west till Mt Everest to the east. After that unforgettable panorama you have breakfast followed by an optional one hour hike to reach the road. The vehicle goes down the meandering and narrow road till Bhaktapur and continues on the highway till the main city of Kathmandu where lunch is organized before visiting Pashupatinath temple. It’s one of the holiest Hindu temples dedicated to Shiva and is situated amidst a lush green natural setting on the bank of the sacred Bagnati River. The temple built in pagoda style has gilded roof and richly carved silver doors. Entrance is forbidden to non Hindu. Stepping in the vehicle the visit continues in Bodhnath renowned for its stupa: one of the oldest and the biggest Buddhist monuments ever built in Nepal. It is an imposing structure standing some 36 meters standing on a massive three level mandala style platform surrounded by colorful private houses. Listed in the UNESCO World Heritage list this site is considered very much like Mecca for the Buddhists and every year then of thousands of pilgrims from all over the Himalayan region visit the stupa. After the visit you will be taken to the GOKARNA Forest Resort for dinner and night.
Day 05 Fly to Pokhara, trek 1 > Birethanti
After breakfast, we transfer to the airport before 1.5 hours of your flight time for the flight about 25 minutes to Pokhara by Yeti Airlines. This flight follows the Ganesh Himal, Manaslu Massif before entering the Central region where Annapurna massif is towering the city of Pokhara. After your arrival at Pokhara Airport you will be welcome at the airport exit by Ker & Downey Lodge representative.
Ker & Downey staff will drive you to Lumle, about 30 km away from Pokhara and starting point of the trek. Leaving the road, you can start walking on a level trail crossing Gurung village of Lumle at 1585m. The trail follows the flagstone-paved main street. Beyond Lumle, the trail rounds a bend and descends to Chandrakot, which is perched on the end of a ridge at 1550m. The views of Annapurna South and
Day 06 Trek 2 > Majgaon
The trail crosses the Modi Khola on a suspension bridge then makes some ups and downs through terraced fields to reach Majgaun. There will be a talk at a local house half an hour from the lodge to Tanchok, now made into a museum. The contents of the house illustrate how the local people live, together with the tools and implements of day to day traditional village life.
Overnight in Gurung Lodge(B L D). 4h walk +550m -100m.
Day 07 Trek 3 > Basanta Dhampus (1650m)
After a spectacular sunrise over the Annapurna South and Fishtail you enjoy a delicious breakfast. Then the trail climbs up to a short pass at about 2000m, going through forests of oaks and rhododendrons. Beyond the pass the trail descends to Dhampus, a large Gurung village strung out along a ridge. From the ridge you are rewarded with great views of the Annapurna Range.
Overnight in Basanta Lodge (B L D).4h walk +550m -350m.
Day 08 Trek 4 > Gathey Khola 1200m and transfer to Pokhara. 2h walk -450m Transfer 1h 15mn
Leaving Dhampus the trail drops on a staircase through forested area and reaches a small plateau with nice terraced fields. From that point, the path drops again till the road down. After half an hour drive you will reach Pokhara Lakeside for a lunch on the lake side. Pokhara is a place of remarkable natural beauty. The serenity of Phewa Lake and the magnificence of the fish tail summit rising behind it create an ambiance of peace and magic. At an elevation lower than Kathmandu, it has much more tropical feel to it, a fact well appreciated by the beautiful diversity of flowers which prosper in its environ.
Overnight in VARAHI Hotel.
Day 09 Drive to Kurintar. (95km, 3h30 drive)
After breakfast we drive to the east to Kurintar through a flat cultivated area right off Pokhara. Further on the road follows the Marshyangdi River till the bridge at Mugling, a busy village with numerous local restaurants for the bus and truck drivers plying on the highway from the Indian border till Kathmandu. After crossing the bridge over the confluence of the Marshyangdi River and the Trisuli River, we follow the latter upstream till Kurintar situated at 258m elevation and starting point for the cable car linking the Mankamana temple on top of the opposite ridge. It’s a 10 minute cable car to reach the temple at 1300 m elevation and a sacred place where every Hindu is visiting once in life in order to get his vows granted. The place has stunning views of the Manaslu Range close-by. By cable car you go down to Kurintar and after crossing the bridge over the Trisuli, it’s about 45 minute walk to reach the BRIGAND’S BEND, a quiet lodge well integrated with the local environment. After settling here it’s time to explore the village around. Although the busy highway is just opposite to the river, the place is wonderfully quiet and far away from the busy highway.
Day 10 Drive to Chitwan. (60 km, 2hrs drive)
After the breakfast, it’s time to leave that very quiet place to take the bridge in reverse way before stepping in our vehicle. The road goes downstream till Mugling taking on the left after that place on a meandering road downstream the Narayani River till the southern Nepal, a completely flat area with no more hills and mountains here. Since the end of the 19th century Chitwan - Heart of the Jungle – used to be a favorite hunting ground for Nepal’s ruling class during the winter seasons. Until the 1950s, the journey from Kathmandu to Nepal’s South was arduous as the area could only be reached by foot. Thus, in an area known as Four Mile Forest comfortable camps were set up for the feudal big game hunters and their entourage, where they stayed for a couple of months shooting hundreds of tigers, rhinoceros, leopards and sloth bears. During the late 19th century, Chitwan was the private hunting reserve of the Rana Prime Ministers. In 1911, King George V led a hunting party to Chitwan and is said to have shot thirty-seven tigers and eight rhinos. Between 1933 and 1940, the King and his guests, is said to have killed four hundred and thirty-three tigers and fifty-three rhinos. In 1950, Chitwan’s forest and grasslands extended over more than 2,600 km2 (1,000 sq mi) and was home to about 800 rhinos. When poor farmers from the mid-hills moved to the Chitwan Valley in search of arable land, the area was subsequently opened for settlement, and poaching of wildlife became rampant. In 1957, the country's first conservation law inured to the protection of rhinos and their habitat. In 1959, Edwar Pritchard Gee undertook a survey of the area, recommended creation of a protected area north of the Rapti River and of a wildlife sanctuary south of the river for a trial period of ten years. After his subsequent survey of Chitwan in 1963, this time for both the Fauna Preservation Society and the International Union for Conservation of Nature, he recommended extension of the sanctuary to the south.
By the end of the 1960s, 70% of Chitwan’s jungles were cleared using DDT, thousands of people had settled there, and only 95 rhinos remained. The dramatic decline of the rhino population and the extent of poaching prompted the government to institute the Gaida Gasti – a rhino reconnaissance patrol of 130 armed men and a network of guard posts all over Chitwan. To prevent the extinction of rhinos the Chitwan National Park was gazetted in December 1970, with borders delineated the following year and established in 1973, initially encompassing an area of 544 km2 (210 sq mi).
In 1977, the park was enlarged to its present area of 932 km2 (360 sq mi). In 1997, a buffer zone of 766.1 km2 (295.8 sq mi) was added to the north and west of the Narayani-Rapti river system, and between the south-eastern boundary of the park and the international border to India.
The park’s headquarter is located in Kasara. Close-by the Gharial and Turtle Conservation Breeding Centres have been established. In 2008, a Vulture breeding centre was inaugurated aiming at holding up to 25 pairs of each of the two Gyps vultures’ species now critically endangered in Nepal - the Oriental white-backed vulture and the slender-billed vulture.
Overnight KASARA ou VARAHI RESORT.
Day 11 Jungle activities in Chitwan
Early in the morning your nature guide will take you for a jungle walk with bird watching, meeting some wild animals on the tour, because you are in their environment. In daytime you will have canoe ride looking for the gharial crocodile specie and after that enjoy elephant bathing. In the afternoon, on elephant back you will track the one-horned rhinoceros and the royal Bengal tiger.
Overnight Kasara or Varahi Lodge (B, L, D)
Day 12 Flight Bharatpur – Kathmandu (20 mn) Kathmandu Valley sightseeing or free day.
Early in the morning your nature guide will take you for a jungle walk with bird watching or for a last elephant back ride. Getting back to hotel you have breakfast and prepare luggage for a 35 minute road drive to the local airport of Bharatpur. According to the flight time lunch might be taken in Chitwan or upon arrival in Kathmandu before continuing the Valley sightseeing. Swayambhunath stupa watches over the valley from the top of a hillock on its western side. The stupa is one of the holiest Buddhist sites in Nepal and is also known as monkey temple, due to the big monkey colony living in the forest and feeding on the pilgrims’ offerings. After the visit you are taken to the Kathmandu Durbar Square, a complex of palaces, courtyards and temples built between the 12th and 18th centuries, used to be the seat of the ancient Malla kings of Kathmandu. An intriguing piece here is the 17th century stone inscription set into the wall of the palace with writings in 15 languages. After the visit drive to the Gokarna Forest Resort for a farewell dinner.
Day 13 Depart Kathmandu, transfer to airport
Upon your international flight time, we’ll transfer you to the international airport about 3 hrs before your flight departure.