The Himalayan country Nepal is a popular travel destination for many adventurous activities.
From the different corners of the world, visitors come to Nepal for a number of reasons. Trekking, hiking, rafting, sightseeing, paragliding, bungee jumping, Helicopter tour are some major attractions of this beautiful small country.
Most of the adventures in Nepal begin from the capital city Kathmandu. Kathmandu valley is surrounded by hill around. These hills are covered with terraced farms, picturesque villages, and lush green forests.
Around Kathmandu valley, there are many nice and quiet places where you can spend quality time with your loved one.
You can see many ancient temples, monasteries, and stupas along the trails. Also, this small visit to these places around the Kathmandu valley offers a chance to witness the traditional village life.
Here are some beautiful places to visit around the Kathmandu valley which you shouldn't miss.
Nagarkot is one of the famous hill stations in Kathmandu Valley for an amazing Himalayan Panorama.
It is situated 32 km east of Kathmandu city. The best way to reach Nagarkot is in private vehicles (bike/car). Alternatively, you can also take public transportation to Bhaktapur first and then get another bus to Nagarkot.
Nagarkot is also the best place for a couple and enjoying the natural scenery by going for a long ride or drive.
On the way, you'll find several stops where you can get a glimpse of widespread Himalayas vistas.
The Nagarkot hill offers an amazing view of Mt. Dhaulagiri in the west to Kanchenjunga in the east. Even on a clear day, you can see Mt. Everest far in the east. Beside this other majestic peaks including Mt. Manaslu, Ganesh Himal, and Langtang Himal.
Nagarkot is also famous for wonderful sunrise and sunset views. This place has been a famous spot for a day outing for the residence of Kathmandu valley as well.
If you don't want to trek, to the base camp of Mt. Everest but still want to see the Mt. Everest, it is possible to see it on a clear day from Nagarkot.
Nagarkot is one of the best hill stations to visit in both the summer and winter seasons.
Panauti is one of the top 10 places to visit around Kathmandu Nepal. It is far from the center location of Kathmandu city. It is situated 35 km south-east of Kathmandu in Kavre districts.
It is one of the oldest towns of the Kathmandu valley. You need to explore this culturally and naturally rich village. This village is featured with ancient temples and restored Rana-era mansions.
In the 12th century, this town was founded by King Ananda Malla. This town is inhabited by the Newari people. The local people of this village celebrate the indigenous festival known as Panauti Jatra. This Jatra is held typically in June-at the start of the monsoon.
It is considered as the most beautiful small Newari town surrounded by the green hills and holy rivers.
Exploring this place gives you an immense opportunity to experience Nepalese local lifestyle, culture, and traditions.
Godawari a national botanical garden is located at the base of Phulchowki hill at the Godavari. It lies near to the south-east corner of Kathmandu valley. It is easily accessible from Kathmandu city by private or public transportation.
It is one of the popular picnic spots as well as dating spots among teenagers. Especially during Saturdays, many families visit this place in large numbers to spend quality time.
The major highlights of this royal botanical garden are the greenhouses, beautiful Godavari Kunda, and a vast collection of Nepal’s national flower-rhododendrons, ferns, lilies, cacti, and orchids. After walking for 200 meters from the garden’s main gate, you’ll get a view of Godawari spring.
Spring season is the best time to visit this national botanical garden as all the flowers are in the full bloom.
If you wish you can go for a small hike of about 2 hours from the Godavari to the top of Phulchowki hill. This is another beautiful hill from where you can get a complete view of Kathmandu valley.
Kakani is another super up holiday area located 29 km north-west of Kathmandu city.
You'll get the mesmerizing views of Ganesh Himal, Langtang Lirung, Mt. Manaslu, Mt. Annapurna, and many other surrounding peaks.
Besides from great mountain views, this trip also rewards with views of green lush forests on one side and terraced cultivation on the other side.
In recent years, this place is famous for bike riding, rock climbing, hiking, and fishing.
You can use different means of transportation like local buses, cars, and motorcycles to get there. Normally, it takes one and half an hour to reach Kakani by car from Kathmandu valley.
There are several resorts and restaurants which provide fresh Trout fish. Along the way, there is a famous Osho Tapoban International Commune. Here you can take meditation classes. Thus, it is an excellent recreational destination.
Also, you can go for a short hike for about three hours to Bhanjyang. The trail goes via beautiful oak and rhododendron forests. En route, you'll see many picnic spots and small villages.
Dakshinkali is one of the popular pilgrimage sites nearby Kathmandu valley. It is located 22 km outside Kathmandu valley and 1 km outside the village of Pharping.
The temple is highly dedicated to Goddess Kali. Many devotees sacrifice animals to get their wish fulfilled.
The best time to visit this place during the Dakshin festival. During this festival, the temple is decorated beautifully and you would see thousands of worshipers.
Besides the religious site, this place is a popular picnic spot and for short drive.
Also, Dakshinkali is a good place to base yourself for a hike up Champa Devi. It is one of the highest hills of the Kathmandu valley at 2,885 meters (7,996 feet).
It has Hindu and Buddhists shrines at the peak and an important pilgrimage site on full moon days.
Since the road condition is good, you can go on the Mountain Bike. It is an interesting place to go via the jungles and explore the other sites too. On the way, you can spot Taud Daha a hot dating spot for young couples.
If you wish you can also hire a taxi, it takes about just a 45-min to reach Dakshinkali.
Chovar is situated 9 km south-west of Kathmandu valley. This place is famous for Chovar gorge the only outlet for all the waters of the valley. Just beyond the gorge, there is the Jal Binayak temple of Lord Ganesha.
At the top of the hill, there is a small but picturesque temple of Adinath. From here you'll get a magnificent view of snow-capped peaks.
This place is mostly occupied by couples but still, you'll have plenty of places to relax or just walk around.
From Chovar, you can get a sweeping view of the whole Kathmandu down below. Even on a clear day, you'll get an amazing view of Himalayan peaks.
This place is utterly enriched with natural beauty and greeneries of trees and is just unexplainable through words.
After Nagarkot, Dhulikhel is the second famous hill stations around the Kathmandu valley. It is famous destinations for hiking and biking among the foreign as well as national tourists. Yearly a large number of tourists visit here.
It is located 30 km east of Kathmandu valley around Arniko highway on the way towards Tibet. Once it used to be an important trading route between Nepal and Tibet.
The main charm of this historic town is the view of snow-capped peaks and sunrise and sunset views. Besides this, the historic Newari settlements and the artistic temples of the town are also other major attractions of Dhulikhel.
From here you can observe a great mountain view, many temples, and diverse landscapes.
Nowadays, Dhulikhel is getting popular for picnics, gatherings, and other programs. Due to easy access and good road connections, many people visit this place for weekends.
You can also go for a day trip to the Tibet border or Tatopani, a place famous for hot spring.
Nama Buddha is another best top 10 places to visit around Kathmandu valley. It is a holy site for the Buddhists. It is situated 40 km southeast of Kathmandu valley in the Kavre district at an altitude of 1,800 m.
At the top of the hill, you'll see the stupa the world heritage monuments of UNESCO. You can also witness the great mountain views and beautiful meadows.
You can also visit the famous Thrangu Tashi Yangtse Monastery. There are more than 250 monks inside this monastery.
It is the most beautiful, quiet, and pure place to visit near Kathmandu valley. The environment is such a pure, it makes a perfect place for meditation.
From the top of the hill, you can get a beautiful sunrise and sunset view over the Himalayan range.
Around Nama Buddha, you can take short hikes to neighbor Tamang villages, to the Buddhists monastery. If you want to go for a longer hike you can go to neighboring towns like Dhulikhel and Panauti.
You can opt for a different mode of transportation to reach Nama Buddha. If you take a local bus, it will take around 3-4 hours. To take a local bus you need to first go to the Ratna Park bus station. You can take a bus from there to Banepa and then pass via Dhunche it goes to Namo Buddha. But if you opt for a taxi from Kathmandu valley, it will take around 2 hours.
The famous historic temple Palanchowk Bhagawati has located 56 km from Kathmandu and 10 km away from Kavre Lamidada. To reach there, it just takes only 2 hours mountainous drive via the Araniko highway.
The temple is considered as the great sacred place among the Hindus pilgrims. Large numbers of devotees visit this place to offer worship to the Bhagwati goddess. This holy place is also considered as the important tourist destination for local as well as foreign tourists.
The best time to visit this place is during the great Dashain festival. People from all over visit and offer an animal sacrifice to the Goddess.
In addition to the religious significance, the panoramic views of Himalayas and the landscape from the hilltop are magnificent.
Chandragiri Hills is a great place located in the south-west of Kathmandu valley. It is situated at 2,551 meters above the sea level. From the top of the hill, you’ll get the breathtaking views of the whole Kathmandu Valley.
Besides the great view of Kathmandu valley, you’ll also get to see panoramic views of the Himalayan range from Annapurna to Everest.
Cable car, children playground, botanical garden, view tower, and Bhaleshwor Mahadev temple are some major attractions of Chandragiri hills.
There are major four options to reach over the hill; Cable car ride, hiking, bike, and jeep ride. It lies near Kathmandu city only 16 km away with approximately half an hour drive you can reach there. From the base of the station at Godam, it takes 9 min via ropeway to reach the top of Chandragiri.
Besides this, you can also opt hiking route. It is one of the best hiking routes around the Kathmandu Valley. The hiking route starts from the Hindu temple at Matatirtha or Hotel Outlook INN.
The trail leads you to Chhap Bhanjyang at 2,275 m via green lush forests and a small village. To reach Chhap Bhanjyang, you need to walk about 3 hours steep up the stone staircase. Then after walking for one hour via forest trail, you’ll reach Chandragiri Hill at 2,729 m.
From the Chandragiri hills, you can witness the spectacular views of the Himalayan range including Ganesh Himal, Langtang Himal, Gaurishankar range, Kanchenjunga, Makalu, and Everest.