Nepal

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Experience

Nepal combines cultural interest through hundreds of century old temples and religious traditions with the natural beauty that Nepal is so blessed with. With eight of the ten tallest mountains in the world within its borders, you know to expect something extraordinary.Its jungles, often forgotten amidst the grandeur of Mount Everest and its fellow Himalayan brothers, are equally impressive, though in a different way.



Kathmandu Valley indicate that people have been living in the Himalayan region for at least 9,000 years. It appears that people who were probably of Kirant ethnicity lived in Nepal more than 2,500 years ago. The Kirant are a tribe of jungle and mountain people who migrated from various parts of India and the Himalayas. One of the earliest confederations of South Asia was that of the Shakya clan, whose capital was Kapilvastu, Nepal.



Nepal shares international borders with China ,Tibet and India. The country is almost big.The northern half contains part of the Himalayan Mountain Range, including the 8,850-metre-high Mount Everest on the border with China. This mountain region is one of the main geographical belts, called the Parbat. In the central parts, the Pahad (Hill region) is the second belt, and to the south along the border with India is the Terai lowland area, where Royal Chitwan and Bardia National Parks are located.

Himalayas

The roof of the world, including Mount Everest, Annapurna, Langtang National Park and The Great Himalaya Trail with numerous sightseeing, trekking, and other adventure sport opportunities.

Kathmandu Valley  
Home to Kathmandu, Boudhanath, Patan and Bhaktapur, this is in the heart of Nepal and a crossroads of cultures with numerous sacred temples and monuments.
 

Middle Hills  
The Hill Region (Pahar in Nepali) is mostly between 700 and 4,000 metres altitude. This region is split from the Terai Range by the Mahabharat Lekh (Lesser Himalaya) and forms a geographic midlands between the Terai and the Himalayas. It includes the scenic Pokhara valley, a popular base for activities in the area.
 

Western Tarai
The western side of the Terai mountain range with the Chitwan National Park and Bardia National Park.
 

Eastern Tarai 
Quite a populated area with Biratnagar, Nepal's second largest municipality.
 


Cities In Nepal

Bhaktapur 
In the Kathmandu Valley; a well-preserved historical city, centre of pilgrimage and Nepali pottery-making; no motorized vehicles allowed
Biratnagar 
An important agricultural centre and a centre for political activism, in eastern Nepal near Dharan
Birganj 
A business gateway between India and Nepal in mid-southern Nepal
Janakpur
A historical religious centre and home to the 500-year old Janaki Temple

Kathmandu 
The capital and largest city in Nepal
 

Lumbini 
Birthplace of Buddha
 

Namche Bazaar
A Sherpa settlement located in the Solu Khumbu region and popular with trekkers

Nepalgunj 
The main hub for the Mid- and Far-Western Development Region; Bardiya National Park is close by

Patan
Beautiful, historic Patan Durbar Square was designated as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1979, also known as Lalitpur
 

Pokhara
Major gateway for trekking in the Himalayas
 


Activities To Do In Nepal

Hiking
There are two hiking season in Nepal one starts in mid September and ends in November and the other starts in March and ends in May. When you are going for treks on a higher altitude, like the Annapurna Circuit or Everest base camp trek you want to exclude, January and February as these are the coldest months, with the risk that snowfall blocking further progress at one point during the trek. October has the best conditions, but is also the most popular month.So bring waterproof clothing, a sleeping bag suitable for low temperatures, a medical kit, which also includes purification tablets to filter water.

The biggest enemy of high altitude treks is altitude sickness also known as Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS). There is no way of telling who will suffer from it, but almost everyone climbing above 3,000 metres will suffer some mild symptoms. In order to adapt to the high altitude it is advised not to gain more than 600 metres elevation a day while trekking above 3,000 metres.

Annapurna Circuit
Hiking the Annapurna Circuit is one of the most impressive ones anywhere in the world but come prepared with a very good physical conditions as this hike is not for the faint of heart, taking 17 to 21 days (Please read my blogs on Phokhra and Himalayas for more details on Annapurna Circuit)

Everest Base Camp Trek
Maybe the most hiked paths in Nepal are those between the town of Lukla and Everest Base Camp. As is the case with the Annapurna Circuit this is a hike that should only be done when you are already in a good physical condition.(Please read my blog on Himalayas for more info)
 


Royal Chitwan National Park
The Royal Chitwan National Park was established in 1973 and contains 932 square kilometres with a diversity of ecosystems-including the Churia hills, Ox-bow lakes, and the flood plains of the Rapti, Reu and Narayani Rivers. It is located west of Kathmandu at the foot of the Himalayas and is one of the few remaining undisturbed vestiges of the 'Terai' region, which formerly extended over the foothills of India and Nepal.It is placed on the Unesco World Heritage List.(For more info please read my blog Royal Chitwan National Park)

Kathmandu Valley
Another Unesco World Heritage Site, the Kathmandu Valley contains seven groups of monuments and buildings which display the full range of historic and artistic achievements for which the Kathmandu Valley is world famous.The seven groups of monuments and buildings include the Durbar Squares of Hanuman Dhoka (Kathmandu), Patan and Bhaktapur, the Buddhist stupas of Swayambhu and Bauddhanath and the Hindu temples of Pashupati and Changu Narayan.

Pokhara
Offering a beautiful lake, fresh trails, good eateries and a peaceful life style Pokhara will have it all for you. Nepal's second city is the opposite to Katmandu's hectic overcrowded streets. Enchanting music streams out of store fronts onto the peaceful one road that is Pokhara's lakeside.Take a trip up to the World Peace Pagoda or go Para gliding from the top of a nearby mountain. Visit caves and go rafting, or arrange everything to do with your trek in this paradise of Nepal.

Mt. Everest
Mount Everest is one of the most Famous Mountains in the world.

Sagarmatha National Park is high mountain park, including Mount Everest. It's a Unesco World Heritage site.

Lumbini is Birthplace of Lord Budha a Unesco site.

Bisket Jatra is the annual celebration of two of the most important deities of the town of Bhaktapur, the wrathful god Bhairab and the goddess Bhadrakali. The New Year of the Bikram Sambat calendar takes place at the same time as this ancient festival. A few days before the New Year, the goddess and the god are enshrined in their raths, or immense chariots,& pulled through the narrow streets of Bhaktapur by crowds of young men.

Nepal generally has a rather warm and humid climate, but conditions vary a lot and of course this has to do with altitude.Winters last from November to March and still are relatively warm and for most parts dry as well, but temperatures in Kathmandu for example can drop slightly below zero from January onwards. The higher you get the colder it gets and of course there is no place in the world where you can theoretically go higher, so be prepared and take warm clothes when you go hiking.

The Nepali national meal is daal bhaat tarkaari. It is spiced lentils poured over boiled rice, and served with vegetables cooked with spices. This is served in most Nepalese homes.

The cuisine of the Terai low lands is almost the same as in adjacent parts of India. Locally grown  fruits are sold and temperate crops from the hills. In addition to bananas and papayas , jackfruit  is a local delicacy.

Some dishes, particularly in the Himalayan region, are Tibetan in origin and not at all spicy. Some dishes to look for include momos, a meat or vegetable filled dumpling, which is similar to Chinese pot stickers. Momos has become very popular in past few decades. Momos can be found almost everywhere in Kathmandu and other towns i
n Nepal.
 
Picture Credit commons.wikimedia

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