Nepal is a country of beautiful scenic landscapes with an abundance of both natural and cultural heritage. Tradition and culture have been a part of life among local ethnic communities since ancient times. It has taken root and flourished as the time passed by. Whether scaling the slopes of Mt. Everest or paying homage at the birthplace of the Buddha, a trip to Nepal is a top destination for many travelers. Situated along the Himalayan mountain range between China and India in South Asia, the country boasts some of the most diverse landscapes on the planet, from snow-capped mountains to subtropical forests. Nepal’s culture is just as varied, filled with centuries-old temples and shrines, a profusion of colorful festivals and plenty of exotic wares to peruse and purchase. From adrenaline-filled activities like mountaineering, kayaking and paragliding to serene strolls among medieval temples and hidden palaces, this country offers more memorable travel experiences than can be squeezed into a single visit.
1 Lumbini – the birth place of Lord Buddha
“The Lord Buddha was born in 623 BC in the sacred area of Lumbini located in the Terai plains of southern Nepal, testified by the inscription on the pillar erected by the Mauryan Emperor Asoka in 249 BC. Lumbini is one of the holiest places of one of the world’s great religions, and its remains contain important evidence about the nature of Buddhist pilgrimage centres from as early as the 3rd century BC.” -UNESCO
2 Everest Base Camp
It is certainly acknowledged by everyone that the highest mountain peak in the world Mt. Everest lies in Nepal. As it is not feasible for anyone or everyone to attempt and climb the Everest itself, the trek to Everest Base Camp trek shall suffice for the experience of conquering Everest, at least experience and feel wise. A trek that lasts 16 days offers an exhilarating flight to Lukla, then a trek through lush rhododendron forest and stone walled traditional villages, to the Sherpa Land, Namche and all the way to the village of Phortse Gaon where one can witness magical peaks of Everest and Nuptse and various other mountain ranges. The journey involves plenty of challenges and requires a high level of fitness. The camp lies at an altitude of 5,364 meters. The camp is a more of a rest point for Climbers looking to climb the Everest and they rest there for several days for acclimatization to reduce the risks of severity of altitude sickness; however it makes for an extravagant adventure tourism spot for any adventure enthusiasts.
3 Annapurna Conservation Area:
Annapurna Conservation Area (ACA) in Nepal is one of the famous places to visit in Nepal. Annapurna Conservation Area (ACA) is the most famous trekking destination of Nepal. Annapurna Conservation Area is the largest protected conservation area with sustainable use of natural resources in Nepal. It is located across the Manang, Mustang, Myagdi and Lumjung districts of Nepal. It is bounded by the dry alpine deserts of Mustang and Tibet (China) in the north, the Kali Gandaki River to the west, Marsyandi Valley in the east and valleys and foothills north of Pokhara in the south. This area is very rich in bio-diversity. It also consist Tilicho Lake, one of the world’s highest altitudes.
4 Dhorpatan Hunting Reserve:
Dhorpatan Hunting Reserve is one of the famous places to visit in Nepal. The Dhorpatan Hunting Reserve is the only one hunting reserve area of Nepal where licensed hunting is permitted. This reserve is stretched through Rukum, Myagdi and Baglung district just below the Dhaulagiri Range in the west Nepal. It ranges from 2,850 to 5,500 meter or 9,350 to 18,000 ft. in altitudes. It is established with the view of encouraging the Nepalese and foreign hunters. It seems that such division has made the management of hunting easy and effective. About 50 percent of the total protected area of this reserve is pasturelands at a higher elevation. The best time or season to visit this reserve is from September to May.
5 Tilicho Lake:
It is one of the highest lakes in the world at an altitude of almost 5,000 meters located in the Annapurna range of the Himalayas in Manang district of Nepal. Anyone attempting to do the Annapurna Circuit route usually cross these watersheds between Manang and Kali Gandaki valleys above the 5,000 meters high Thorong La pass. Various lodges have been built between Manang and the Lake, but there aren’t any accommodation sites or even teahouses past the Tilicho Base Camp lodge. Tilicho Lake and the trek as a whole is a very revitalizing experience, yet a very demanding and an extremely adventurous terrain, not meant for everyone, only the adventure junkies so-to-say.
6 Upper Mustang
The Upper Mustang trek can also be called a peek into the hidden world of Buddhist kingdom of Mustang, also called Lo. Lo used to be a part of the Tibetan empire, and is therefore very closely related to Tibet; not only the culture, also the landscape is very much related to Tibet. Surrounded by rocks in all kinds of colors and bizarre formations, Mustang is mostly a barren landscape where the villages with their bright colored fields are like Oasis in the deserts. Mustang lies in the shadow of the Dhaulagiri region and is a complete desolate landscape. The culture of the people living there is one of the major attractions for tourists and visitors alike.
7 Koshi Tappu – Wildlife Reserve
“A primeir location in Nepal for bird watching.The Kosi Tapu and the Kosi Barrage in east Nepal provide one of the best places in Nepal to view migratory water fowl, waders and shore birds during the winter months. Many species not recorded elsewhere in the region have been seen here. Thousands of birds congregate here in January and February before they migrate north when the warm weather begins. Kosi Tapu Tented Camp situated on the fringe of the reserve provides the only accommodation to date. Well qualified nature guides take the guests out on walks, jeep drives and boat rides to look for birds and the wild buffalo found only here in Nepal. It is possible to combine this tour with SunKosi Raft Trip or with treks in the eastern hills.” -timetotime t (Tripadvisor)
8 Rara Lake:
Rara taal is the biggest lake situated within the borders of Nepal, which lies at an altitude of 2,990 m above sea level and covers an area of 10.8 square kilometers. The lake is surrounded by Rara National Park on all sides, the park was established in 1976 to preserve the beauty of the lake and protect the unique floral and faunal importance of the rare and vulnerable species found around the lake. The trek to Rara has been a popular destination for many trekkers, with a very rough route in the western part of Nepal. The trek begins with a flight to Jumla, and a mountainous trek follows after that, where one would pass many villages untouched by all the hassle in the world and finally reaching the banks of the Rara Lake which was aesthetically described by GORP founder Bill Greer as, ‘’a shimmering blue jewel set in a ring of snowy peaks.’’
9 Khaptad National Park:
Khaptad National Park is a protected area in the Far-Western Region of Nepal which was established in 1984 on the advice of the region’s holy man Khaptad Baba. The Park stretches over four districts of Bajhang,Bajura, Accham and Doti and covers an area of 225 square km. The landscape consists of steep slopes, streams and moorland. It is considered to be one of the best scenic landscapes Nepal has to offer, with various landscapes and species of birds and animals along with different kinds of vegetation it surely is a place where almost none of the beauty has been rearranged by human hands. Certainly a place where one can experience the true essence of tranquility and peace.
10 Gosaikunda Lake:
Situated inside the Nepal’s Langtang National Park and located at an altitude of 4,380 in the Rasuwa district covering an area of 1,030 ha, Gosaikunda is an adventure travel destination that has been delineated as a religious site according to Hindu mythology. It ais basically an alpine freshwater oligotrophic lake surrounded by spectacular mountainous view and is a significant place of interest in the Dhunche-Helambu trekking route. This trek adjoins the Langtang valley trek in the same district and the two treks can be combined, this trek can easily be done teahouse style due to the availability of hotels and lodges all along the trekking route.
11 Chitwan National Park:
This was the very first National Park established in Nepal in the year 1973 and 1was granted the status of a World Heritage Site in 1984. Formerly called the Royal Chitwan National Park, it was renamed to only Chitwan National Park after the dismissal of the royal family. The park covers an area of 932 square kilometers and is located in the subtropical Inner Terai lowlands of south-central Nepal in the district of Chitwan. It is certainly one of the most popular tourist destinations in Nepal, with several lodges and hotels providing full accommodations inside the park along with elephant-jeep-safaris, rafting tours and guided jungle walks. The park is a sheer example of wildlife exploration and all the different kinds of birds and vegetation that provide importance to its existence.
12 Barun Valley
“Barun Valley provides stunning contrasts, where high waterfalls cascade into deep gorges, craggy rocks rise from lush green forests, and colorful flowers bloom beneath white snow peaks. This unique landscape shelters some of the last pristine mountain ecosystems on earth. Rare species of animals and plants flourish in diverse climates and habitats, relatively undisturbed by human kind.” -Wiki
13. Rolwaling Valley
“Rolwaling is an inner Himalayan valley, considered to be a Beyal or holy sanctuary by the local Buddhist Sherpa inhabitants. The name Rolwaling means, ‘valley carved by a plough’ and its steep cliffs do indeed give the impression of a plough-carved furrow. It is a little trekked area lying just west of Everest, and its forests and views are some of the best in Nepal. It was here in 1951 that the first yeti footprints were discovered and photographed by Eric Shipton.” – nepalwatcher
14 Namche Bazar
Better known as the Gateway to Mt. Everest, Namche Bazaar is the main trading center of khumbu region.Today its a major tourist hub, especially the starting point for Mount Everest climbers.
“Badimalika Temple lies in Bajura districts situated around fifteen thousand feet from sea land. Its culture, landscape, biodiversity, climate and people at large have valorized its pristine beauty. Moreover Badimalika is a paradise in real sense not only for those wanting to explore natural and cultural treasures but also for those who seek pacified life with meditating enlightenment.” – Hamro Malika.
“The Manang Valley, which lies close to the Nepal-Tibet border, offers tremendous opportunities due to its rich natural flora and fauna. Three tracks start from here. The first, via Thorangla, Muktinath, and Mustang to Lhasa—a journey that takes four days; the second via Naur Khola and Naurgaon, which takes five days to Lhasa; and finally the third via Larkiya bazar, which is the one most commonly used by the people of Central Nepal.” -Wiki.
17 Panch Pokhari
“Panch Pokhari means the group of five holy ponds / lakes. This is just northeast of Kathmandu toward snow wall. Pach pokhari is situated to the north east of Kathmandu. valley and west of Rolwaling Himal. It is pilgrimage place for Hindus and it has five holy ponds at the height of 4462mtr. The area offers cultural heritage, unsurpassed beauty and biological diversity. The beautiful Himalayan range and pristine nature with different culture are major highlight of this trek.” – Adventure High Mountain.
18 Langtang Valley
Langtang valley, recently declared as a protected area, lies to the north of Kathmandu Valley. The famous high mountain lake Gosaikunda, sacred to Hindus, also rest in the region..
19 Gokyo Valley
This tranquil valley is more famous for glacier-fed Gokyo Lakes that are considered to be sacred by both Hindus and Buddhists.
20 Khumbu Region
The nothern part of Solukhumbu district is better known as Khumbu, which is home to the inhabitants of mountanous region including Sherpa community.
21 Shey Phoksundo National Park
The only trans-Himalayan national park of Nepal provides a diversity of spectacular landscapes and ranks among the most scenic mountain parks in the world.