Nepal was hit by a series of devastating earthquakes last year, and while much of the country is still in recovery mode, there’s still plenty of stunning scenery just waiting to be explored by daring tourists.
It also recently attracted the attention of Prince Harry, who paid a visit to the Himalayan country in March. We spoke to travel-planning company KimKim, some of whose employees have lived in Nepal for years, to find out the best sights to see and most exciting experiences to have.
While the growing consensus is that it is now safe to return to Nepal, we recommend that you monitor the situation before you travel, due to protests that have recently occurred near the border with India. From paragliding to exploring an ancient city, here are 10 incredible things to do in Nepal:
1. Take a Vespa tour through Kathmandu, where you can explore hundreds of narrow streets filled with old buildings and eclectic shops. You can book a tour through companies like Vespa Valley.
2. Walk around the Boudhanath Stupa, a stunning meditative monument in Kathmandu that is one of the largest of its kind in the world.
3. Take a helicopter flight to the foot of Mount Everest, where you’ll be served breakfast at Yeti Mountain Home, one of the world’s highest lodges. You can book the tour through companies like Nepal Myths and Mountain Trails.
4. Explore the ancient city of Bhaktapur. Though some of the city’s structures were damaged in the 2015 earthquake, the city still has many courtyards, temples, medieval squares, and statues to explore.
5. Escape the crowds and embark on the Manaslu Circuit Trek, often hailed as Nepal’s top trek by travelers and local operators. Along the way, you’ll find stunning mountain scenery to admire.
6. Raft down Nepal’s longest river, the Karnali River, where you can enjoy exhilarating white-water rafting and lush forest scenery.
7. Go bungee jumping or canyon swinging at a height of more than 500 feet at The Last Resort. Travelers can also unwind in the sauna of the incredible resort, which is set at the top of a gorge near the Tibetan border.
8. Go paragliding in Pokhara, where you’ll witness stunning views of mountains and of the Phewa Lake below. The area also has convenient take-off and landing zones, and companies with trained staff members can assist with the activity.
9. Go on one of Pranamaya Yoga’s retreats, where you can practice yoga in the quarters of a breathtaking Tibetan Buddhist monastery nestled in the Himalayan foothills.
10. Head to Pikey Peak, located in the lower Solukhumbu region of Nepal, for unbelievable views of Mount Everest. The vantage point is said to have been the favorite view of Edmund Hilary, one of the first two climbers (along with Tenzing Norgay), to reach the summit of Mount Everest in 1953.