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Shivapuri Hiking

Shivapuri with an altitude 2720 m. lies inside the Shivapuri National park, in the northeast of Kathmandu remains the second highest hill around Kathmandu valley. Bagdwar, the source of the holy river Bagmati, is located near Shivapuri. The national park was established in 2002 and is home to 177 species of birds, 19 species of mammals, and 150 species of butterflies.

The trail will lead you to snow-capped mountains with infatuating snow through luxurious rhododendron forest and the green blanket forest. The major attractions here are the unbeatable views from the Shivapuri Peak at 2,720 m and the culturally significant Nagi Gumba, a monastery dedicated to the nuns. The hike up to the Shivapuri summit offers superb views of the Kathmandu Valley and towering Himalayan peaks.

Shivapuri Hiking provides breathtaking Himalayan vistas of the Budhanilkantha Temple, Ganesh Himal, Dorji Lhakpa, Rolwaling Himalayas, Langtang Himalayas, and Nagi Gompa. This trek is ideal if you enjoy birds, and occasionally we run into leopards, wild boars, and other creatures.

Ranikot Hiking

Ranikot at an elevation of 2782 m. is the southern hill station of Bhaktapur, that up mostly lies above the Pilot Baba Ashram, Gymape Danda. Offering the elegant view of snow-capped mountains in the north, the terraced farms and the pristine natural beauty of Nepalese villages are the major attraction of Ranikot.

Dispersed settlements of hill Tamangs cover open spaces. The remnants of Ranikot fort built by Prithvi Narayan Shah back in Malla period is still there at the place. A gigantic Vairab temple will provide you with his mercy and blessings.

Ranikot also offers the best view of Kathmandu valley as well. The countryside offers great natural scenery and terraced farmlands add beauty to the village as well. The hospitality and culture that the village has to offer are also magnificent. You can even spend a night at Ranikot if you wish to get the sunrise view from Ranikot.

Ranikot's dense forests make it an ideal destination for birdwatching enthusiasts. The area has been designated as a bird conservation zone by the Panauti Municipality due to its rich biodiversity. Rare species such as the spiny babbler have been recently discovered, adding to the allure of Ranikot for nature lovers. Immerse yourself in the symphony of bird calls, explore the vibrant ecosystem, and witness the wonders of Nepal's avian inhabitants.

Phulchowki Hiking

Phulchowki is the highest hill in Kathmandu valley. It is situated at an elevation of 2782m and resides in the southeast part of Kathmandu. This is one of the most beautiful hiking trails in terms of vegetation and offers the chance to sight a variety of birds.

"Phulchowki" means "hill full of flowers," in Nepali. Many varieties from trees to shrubs, wildflowers, and beautiful rhododendron and magnolia are in full bloom. Likewise, during the winter, this hill becomes a snow beauty draped in a soft, simmering white veil. The hill station provides a wonderful view of high Himalayan peaks including Annapurna and Manaslu peaks in the far west, and the enormous Ganesh, Langtang, and Jugal Himal range in the middle north, as well as vistas of Mt. Everest and its range to the east.

The Phulchowki Day Hike begins, with a short drive to Godawari which lies at the base of the hill. The trail winds uphill through lush foliage and tall trees, passing through a few small farms and villages. The journey progresses through the dense vegetation till the summit of Phulchowki Hill, the highest point in the area offering a bird's eye perspective of Kathmandu Valley and nearby villages, as well as astonishing Himalayan views. You can see a variety of birds such as Rufous-gorged, Yellow-browed Tit, Chestnut-headed Tesia, Rufous-bellied Niltava, Red-billed Leiothrix, different species of butterflies, and wild animals, resulting in the hill as an excellent site for botanists and naturalists. The hikers can also observe the religious ceremony happening at the Phulchowki Mai Temple which is seated on this hilltop during March or April.

Namobuddha Hiking

The Namo Buddha Hiking route, at an altitude of 2565m, takes you through the villages of Banepa and Panauti, which is a one hour drive from Kathmandu. The area is renowned for its well-preserved culture and traditions.

The hike takes you through beautiful Rhododendron forests and offers views of sacred and ancient temples and monasteries, including the Namo Buddha Stupa, Indreshwar Mahadev Temple, and the Brahmayani Temple. The peaceful environment is punctuated by colorful prayer flags, adding to the spiritual atmosphere of the hike. The trail also offers views of the snow-capped Himalayas, making it a perfect destination for nature and culture enthusiasts alike.

Namobuddha is very important Buddhist Pilgrimage which lies about 38 kilometers east of Kathmandu. The Stupa and shrines built in this lovely little hill mark a very ancient holy site which signifies the place where a legendary prince named Mahasattva offered himself to a starving Tigress with its several underfed cubs. This legendary episode is depicted in a very nice stone slab and depicted right next to a holy Stupa.

Nagarkot Hiking

Situated at an altitude of 2175m, Nagarkot is one of the most scenic spots of the valley that offers a majestic sunrise view over the Himalayas including Everest.

Early in the morning, you drive from Kathmandu to Sankhu which takes approximately one hour. The 5 hours hiking journey starts from the Newari village of Sankhu and covers around 28km till you reach Nagarkot. On the way, you will walk past Pine forest, terraced fields, farmlands, and Newari Kartik village. The journey ahead from Kartik village offers breathtaking sights of the Himalayas and greenery.

The most popular walk leads down from Nagarkot along a ridge to the temple of Changunarayan with views of Sankhu village to the right and Bhaktapur to the left. Changunarayan is situated at the end of a long ridge which runs well into the valley, it is said to have been built in 323 AD by King Hari Datta Varma. The temple, famous for its architecture is richly decorated with sculptures and carvings. It is said to be the oldest temple in the valley. After excursions in and around Changunarayan you board the vehicle to drive back to Kathmandu which takes one and half hours.

Kakani Hiking

Kakani Danda lies in the northwest of Kathmandu Nepal towards Dunche which is the road leading to Langtang Region trekking.

This is an interesting hike through oak, rhododendron and pine forest. Early in the morning, you drive from Kathmandu to Kakani (2073m), 32km north of Kathmandu about one hour. From here the trail leads to the east along graveled derivable road. The entire trail is almost entirely on a level path.

You hike about three hours to Bhanjyang, which does include a 20 minute steep ascent before reaching the final location. After detouring around the area here, you retrace the same path back to Kakani in about two and half hours and then drive back to Kathmandu.

It is about 12 km walking tour around Kakani hill. During the hike you visit a Buddhist Monastery, ethical Tamang Villages, some nature forest walking experience, visit the Kakani Farmers fields, Kakani Memorial Park, Kakani Stuppa, Basanti Durbar Area, Strawberry farms and Natural climbing rocks.

Champadevi Hiking

Champadevi hill is one of the best hiking spots near Kathmandu to observe the whole valley of Kathmandu and Himalayan views including Manaslu range, Ganesh Himala range, Langtang range and Mount Everest.

Champadevi at an elevation of 2285 m. is a spectacular Hill destination situated in the south-west fringe of the Kathmandu Valley. It lies towards south east from Kathmandu valley and near Chovar, Pharping & Dakshinkali Templ. A pilgrimage locus for both Hindu and Buddhist devotees this crusade pledges you with the magnificent landscape, mountain scenes and all-inclusive view of the Kathmandu valley.

The tour starts after early breakfast in your hotel. It is about 27 kilometer driving. As you commence to hike the trail heads north along the pine forested ridge about half an hour, then the trail makes round bound towards south and takes another 3-hour's walk to reach Champadevi. The views of central and western Himalayan ranges are magnificent. After enjoying the splendid views, you come down following the same path to Pharping for about 2 hours and drive back to Kathmandu.

Travel With Rajbala

Since we began in the early 90s we have always strived to keep our environmental footprint as small as possible and to give back to the many villages we pass through on our trekking itineraries. Today we still embrace this responsible travel approach when devising and operating our small group travel holiday experiences in Nepal. We invite you to trek in Nepal with the Himalayan trekking specialists Raj Bala Treks and Expeditions.