Kathmandu, the capital city of Nepal, is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Asia. Situated about 4400 feet above sea-level, amidst the Himalayas it is one of the most picturesque capitals of the world. Kathmandu Valley, where the capital city is located has been declared as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1979. The city is a unique combination of both cosmopolitan as well as historic ambiance, as its history dates back to over 2000 years. If that doesn’t attract you, then the extraordinary scenic beauty and some of the best hiking trails in Asia should tempt you. Kathmandu is one of the best place for holidays because not only does it offer you the serenity to rest and recuperate, it provides for all kinds of adventurous sporting activities one can look forward to during holidays-trekking, river rafting, adventure biking to name a few.
Travel Information: There are no train services between India and Nepal and the roads too are through mountain passes, so unless you have a very good driver at hand, it is advisable to travel by air. Kathmandu, being the capital boasts of the biggest and only International Airport in the country.
When SAARC nationals decide to travel to Nepal, they enjoy the added benefit of being exempted from Visa fees. Visas for travelers from most other countries can be obtained on arrival at the airport itself.
The national language of Nepal is Nepali but the tourist language is English, so it should not be a problem. If one feels the requirement one can easily avail the services of a travel guide. Nepal is a Hindu country, and the currency of Nepal is the Nepalese Rupee (NPR) (Symbol Rs).
Nepal’s beauty can be enjoyed throughout the year with varying seasons, but the best times to visit Nepal would be the months of April/May and October/November as these months offer the clearest mountain views and also excellent weather for trekking.
There are many different places to visit in Nepal; one of the most famous places is the Pashupatinath Temple. The temple with gold-plated roof, silver doors and exquisite wood carvings is dedicated to Lord Shiva. In this temple Lord Shiva is worshipped as the Lord of the Animals, hence the name (Pashu, meaning animals and Nath, meaning Lord). The temple is located next to river Bagmati offering a very serene and beautiful atmosphere.
The other place of interest would be Pokhara, situated about 827 meters above sea-level. It is located about 200kms (124 miles) west of Kathmandu. Pokhara is nestled amidst the snow-clad Himalayas which at all times of the year offer a breath-taking view.
Annapurna range, another must visit place for tourists offers a breathtaking view of snow-clad mountains reflecting the early morning sun rays, casting them in hues of silver and gold. The Annapurna range includes eight important mountains.
Kirtipur located 8 Kms south-west of Kathmandu, is a historic town. The town has a umber of old temples and shrines and it is not an uncommon sight to see locals dressed in traditional costumes and working on the traditional looms. The Tribhuvan University of Nepal is right at the foot of the hill where Kirtipur is located.