Катманду

10 reasons to visit Nepal (even if you are not into trekking)

Travelling to Nepal is mostly associated with trekking to Everest base camp or around Annapurna. So people tend to think that it is does not make sense to go to Nepal, if you do not have 20+ days to spend in the mountains or you just do not like trekking. But Nepal has much more to offer besides this and is one of the most pleasant and interesting countries of the region to travel. 

Patan
Durbar square in Patan
1. Durbar Squares (in Kathmandu, Patan and Bhaktapur). Don't be surprised that they carry the same name – a Durbar Square is a generic name for an area outside a royal palace. These three cities were the centers on small kingdoms before the unification of Nepal. All three squares are Unesco Heritage Sites, with numerous temples, stupas and mausoleums. National Museum at Kathmandu Durbar Square demonstrates masterpiece wooden carvings, and the museum in Patan tries to explain the system of Hindu deities.
 
rickshaw
Rickshaws
2. Photography. Kathmandu valley is a photographer's paradise. Terracotta-color walls, countless temples, statues and stupas, people in colorful dresses – you just need to keep your eyes open and your camera ready. 
 
3. Hospitality. Nepalese people are kind and warm-hearted, they genuinely take care of a traveler instead of trying to rip him off like in nearby India. Most of them speak decent English, so the communication is normally smooth. Warning – you still need to bargain almost everywhere to get a reasonable price.
 
Everest
Everest on the left
4. Mountain flight. You have a chance to see Everest without spending weeks and weeks on the trek. Small planes leave Kathmandu each morning and make a round trip to Himalayas for a breathtaking view of mountains over the clouds. They even let each passenger enter the pilot's cockpit to take the best pictures. In the end of the flight you get a glass of champagne and a mountain flight diploma.
 
Nepal
Momos
5. Momos. Kathmandu offers restaurants with cuisine from all over the world – from Chinese to Italian, from Japanese to Israeli. But if you want to try local food, don't miss momos – chicken or vegetable dumplings with dipping sauce. I also tasted dessert momos with apples and cinnamon.
 
Nepal
Singing bowls
6. Singing bowls. They are mainly used for meditation, but also for healing practices. Learn how to extract a sound from them – it is not that easy as it seems.
 
chitwan
A gharial
8. Wildlife. The central part of Nepal is covered with jungles, where you can spot tigers, rhinos, gharials, bears, deers and hundreds types of birds. You may also visit the elephant breeding center and even bath in the river on the back of an elephant. Chitwan National Park is 1 hour flight plus 30 minutes drive from Kathmandu. The bus is cheaper, but it takes 7-8 hours due to bad condition of the roads and traffic jams.
 
9. SPA salons. After a long days of walking I really appreciated Thai massage. You may also opt for Ayurveda procedures, oil massage or even sauna.
 
kathmandu
Earthquake consequences
10. Helping after the earthquake. Nepal was badly hit by 2015 earthquake. Many temples and private houses in Kathmandu valley were destroyed. The local people are working hard to restore the buildings, but you may still see the consequences of the disaster. Do not let this stop you from going to Nepal. On the contrary – the money you spend now in Nepal would help to rebuild this beautiful country.

38 Comments

  • Momos sound like heaven! I am a dumpling fiend so always excited to discover new varieties! I had no idea about the flights, i'm not a hiker so this definately appeals to me. 

    Reply
    • Elena Nemets

      12.02.2017

      Have you been to Poland? If you are a fan of dumplings, this would be your paradise, they have 30+ types in some restaurants! (called “pierogi”)

      Reply
  • Kerri

    12.02.2017

    Great to read this as trekking is often all you hear about Nepal.  So many other things to do and relaxation and retreat seems to be at the heart of much of it.  I would definitely want to try the momos.

    Reply
    • Elena Nemets

      13.02.2017

      It is such a pleasant place, indeed. A part of my heart stayed there.

      Reply
  • Paul

    12.02.2017

    We are planning on a trip to Nepal towards the end of the year, and trekking would be a large part of our trip. But it's great to know that Nepal isn't just all about the mountains, and that there is plenty of other things to keep you entertained! Thanks for sharing

    Reply
    • Elena Nemets

      13.02.2017

      Good luck with your trip. I think you will enjoy food, shopping and spa even more after you come back from the trek.

      Reply
  • Brianna

    12.02.2017

    I totally agree with all of these! Nepal is an incredible place. Their hospitality really is generous, and yes. The Momos. I would return to Nepal just for those!

    Reply
  • Jenn

    13.02.2017

    So cool! I really want to check out Nepal, and you've given me 10 more reasons why! I'm not super into trekking (I love a good hike, but snow camping? Nahhh), but those mountains give me serious heart eyes. Definitely would love to learn how to make momos, too! Thanks for sharing!

    Reply
    • Elena Nemets

      13.02.2017

      When I realized that trekking in Nepal means at least 3 weeks(!) in the mountains, with a backpack and walking 5-6 hours a day, I realized that this is not for me… yet 🙂 Still, it was a great trip.

      Reply
  • Lara Dunning

    13.02.2017

    Nepal has been on my list for awhile, but not for trekking, so I appreciate a travel post like this. Those momos look really good, and the apple cinnamon sounds even better. Saving!

    Reply
    • Elena Nemets

      13.02.2017

      Thanks! Hope you will enjoy Nepal as much as I did!

      Reply
  • Travellingdany

    13.02.2017

    Nepal and Tibet are two of the places on Earth that fascinate me the most. I love all the photographies you added here, they make me want to pack and fly there!

    Also, as someone else mentioned, Polish pierogi are just about delicious, we sampled a lot of variations when we were there last month!

    Reply
    • Elena Nemets

      13.02.2017

      Thanks for your kind words! It is a fascinating part of the world, definitely worth visiting.

      Reply
  • Bethanny Sudibyo

    14.02.2017

    Nepal looks like a really nice place! I would really love visit Nepal because I have heard so much about it. I really love those singing bowls and I would love to experience the culture there since my fellow travelers told me a lot about the meditation there as well.

    Reply
  • Skye Gilkeson

    14.02.2017

    So glad you showed more of Nepal as a destination, other than just trekking. I would love to trek one day, but this really gives a better feel for other things to see in the beautiful country when we finally get there!

    Reply
  • Eemma

    14.02.2017

    Nepal is my dream destination! How long were you guys there for? The photos are so beautiful! 

    Reply
    • Elena Nemets

      17.02.2017

      Thanks! We were there for a week and a half, and this was tight…

      Reply
  • I'm sure it's hard to take a bad photo in Nepal!  All great reasons… I'm convinced. Thanks for sharing and happy travels 🙂

    Reply
    • Elena Nemets

      17.02.2017

      Thanks! Yes, it is a photographer paradise 🙂

      Reply
  • Kaleigh

    21.04.2017

    Hello! Someone in my Facebook group shared this website with us soI came to take a look. I’m definitely enjoying the information. I’m bongimark-okand will be tweeting this to my followers! Fantastic blog and fantastic design.

    Reply
    • Elena Nemets

      21.04.2017

      Thank you!

      Reply
  • Elena

    29.04.2017

    I am convinced 🙂

    Reply
  • Elena

    30.04.2017

    I believe that you had great time in Nepal. After reading your review I am convinced to put it on my bucket list as well. 

    Reply
    • Elena Nemets

      30.04.2017

      Thanks! It totally worth it!

      Reply
  • These dumplings look to die for! Give me some good veggie dumplings and I can go wherever! nepal sure does sound like an amazing place and I wouldn't mind comming one day! Especially with those nepalese curries!

     

    Reply
    • Elena Nemets

      30.04.2017

      Nepal (and overall South-Eastern Asia) is a paradise for veggies!

      Reply
  • Noblandmakeup

    30.04.2017

    Nepal is so beautiful! It's good to know that there's so much more to Nepal than hiking, especially if it's not your thing. 

    Reply
    • Elena Nemets

      30.04.2017

      We are definitely not hikers, and we enjoyed the country so much, so I wanted to share.

      Reply
  • Ivan

    30.04.2017

    Nepal is such an interesting country and, with this list, I am more intrigued. It's nice that it's not too touristy, which makes it even more perfect for adventures.

    Reply
    • Elena Nemets

      30.04.2017

      It is touristy, but they have all infrastructure for handling tourists, so it’s not bothering.

      Reply
  • Jessica

    01.05.2017

    How I wish I could travel! We live in the US so we don't travel overseas ever. I love the photography and hospitality reasons to travel to Nepal. I love taking pictures so a new scenery would be great. I love meeting people and especially those that would welcome me. Beautiful photos that you have included! We helped with donations after the earthquake. I love helping so that would also be another reason I would want to go. 

    Reply
    • Elena Nemets

      03.05.2017

      This is so kind of you to give donations, they really needed it, the country was badly hit. Hope you’ll be traveling the world sometimes in future!

      Reply
  • Ali Rost

    01.05.2017

    I've never been to Nepal and it seems like such a wonderful place.  I'd so love to take a mountain flight to see Mt Everest.  It's beauty is truly stunning!  

    Schedule

    Reply
    • Elena Nemets

      03.05.2017

      And you don’t need to hike for 20 days just to see the mountain – very efficient :)))))

      Reply
  • OMGGGG! Momos are THE BEST! I think that's probably my top reason to visit!

    Reply
    • Elena Nemets

      03.05.2017

      I ate them every day!!! 

      Reply
  • kathryn Maher

    02.05.2017

    I have always thought of Nepal as a fascinating and mysterious place. Its colour and vibrancy hold a great appeal for me. The earth quake there in 2015 had a terrible effect on the people. Great photographs you really captured the essence of the place

    Reply
    • Elena Nemets

      03.05.2017

      Thanks a lot! The Nepalese are doing a great job rebuilding the country after the earthquake, I really admire these people!

      Reply

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