KATHMANDU: Nepal follows its own calendar system known as Bikram Sambat. New Year in Nepal is observed as an official holiday. The day usually falls in the second week of April. During this occasion, people go for picnics, visit some places, have get-togethers, and celebrate the day socializing in various ways.
Various rituals are conducted and yearly annual carnivals like Bisket Jatra, Sindoor Jatra, and Bode Jatra are passionately carried out to welcome the New Year in traditional style. New Year’s Eve events and parties are also organized at clubs, hotels, and restaurants for party lovers.
If you are planning to visit during New Year, we have listed 10 places near and around Kathmandu.
1. Langtang National Park
Langtang National Park (LNP) is the nearest Himalayan Park from the capital city Kathmandu. The park has an area of 1,710 sq. km and extends over parts of Rasuwa (4 Rural Municipalities and covers 57 % of its total area) Nuwakot (3 Rural Municipalities and covers 7 % of its total area), and Sindhupalchowk (3 Rural Municipalities and covers 36 % of its total area). Districts to the southern mountainous terrain of the Nepal-China (Tibet) border.
The park lies in pinnacle being the meeting point between Indo-Malayan and Pale-arctic realms which embellished with the important ecosystems of both realms as the conservation priority.
Phulchowki, a prominent mountain peak in Nepal, surrounds the valley of Kathmandu. The mountain is called ‘Phul,’ to reflect flowers, the literal meaning. This place is a natural garden of flowers and everything bright-beautiful!
The Mountain is a bed of wild roses, along with iris, yellow jasmine, and several native flowers. The area is well known for its resorts as well. If you are looking for something peaceful or if you are searching for a short, easy day hike, then this is the place that should be listed in your itinerary.
If you don’t have time to go very far from Kathmandu, Nagarkot can provide you with breathtaking views of the mountains and it’s famous for its sunrise views over the mountains.
Nagarkot has a reputation as the top spot for enjoying Himalayan views from the comfort of your hotel balcony. The village is packed with hotels lining a ridge, affording one of the broadest possible views of the Himalaya, with eight ranges visible (Annapurna, Manaslu, Ganesh Himal, Langtang, Jugal, Rolwaling, Everest and Numbur). The best viewing seasons are October to December and March to April, when clear skies are likely.
This hill-station offers the perfect little trek which takes in flora and fauna, spectacular panoramas of the mountains and takes you through Shivapuri National Park. You can see the Langtang Himal, JugalHimal, Ganesh Himal and Gaurishankar Himal ranges.
Kakani is an old hill station, home to the Tamang ethnic group, situated 2,073 m above sea level.
The best time to come and enjoy the views of the Ganesh Himal, Annapurna and Dhaulagiri ranges.
Besides the natural beauty of the village, the place also provides insight into the rural life of the people living in the rim of the Kathmandu valley.
Kulekhani is best known for the hydropower damn which provides visitors with a lake like an environment and the opportunity for boating! Its breathtaking scenery, landscape, rivers, waterfalls, and flora are well worth the time it takes to get there from Kathmandu.
Once the ancient trade route with India, you can also see a number of mini Buddhist stupas on the way. Actually, you can combine a trip by visiting the Buddhist town of Pharping with its monastery and sacred cave. There is also the possibility to stop at the Bheda Farm at Chitlang.
Kalinchowk is located at an altitude of 3842m above sea level and 150 kilometers away from Kathmandu. Kalinchowk is a quick city escape that lies in Dolakaha district, Kalinchowk VDC. It is about 132 kilometers from Kathmandu to Charikot, 18 km off road up to Kuri Village and an hour hike from there.
For people who want to experience snowfall, high altitude, sightseeing and light adventures with less effort, this is the perfect option. In addition to that, it is also a famous spiritual or pilgrimage site for Hindus.
Bandipur has retained its age-old cultural attributes – temples, shrines, sacred caves, innumerable festivals, and a Newari architecture that harks back to the Kathmandu Valley of old.
Located on a wide saddle at a height of 1,030 m the surrounding hills of Bandipur are ideal for hiking along trails that take you through tribal villages, verdant forests, and hilltop shrines that once doubled as fortresses.
9. Balthali village
Balthali village is located in the picturesque setting on the outskirt of the Kathmandu valley. During the hike, you can visit the Namo Buddha monastery and where you can enjoy the yoga experience at the natural setting of the calm countryside along with the views of the snow-capped the Himalayas.
10. Khokana and Bungamati Villages
Located far away from the chaos of city life in a remote corner of Nepal, these villages are your best bet if you wish to disconnect from the rest of the world and simply relax in the lap of nature. Watching the villages go by their everyday jobs will surely transport you back in time!
Bungamati is famed for its woodcraft. And once you have witnessed these craftsmen create the most awesome wooden handiwork; you can proc to the next attraction – the shrine of Rato Macchendranath, along with other religious monuments here. Khokana, on the other hand, is famous for producing and extracting mustard oil in a unique way. Here, you must also visit the famous three-story temple of Shikali Mai.
Apart from these places, you can also explore Dhulikhel, Daman, Namo Buddha, Champadevi, Tarebhir, Sundarijal, Bhotechaur Tea Garden, and others.