With its hugely diverse topography and climate, for what is essentially such a small area one can take in most aspects of Nepal in a comprehensive, 2 – 3-week itinerary. However, we would suggest discovering fewer areas at a slower pace in order to get under the skin of each area. Our team on the ground are superb and excel at what they do, ensuring everything runs seamlessly and always on hand for any questions, problems or requests – they’ll stop at nothing to make your stay in their country perfect.
The roads in Nepal are going through a period of upgradation which, in many places, makes them worse than they were before so road travel to some parts can be long, bumpy and arduous. However, there is a network of local flight routes which make travelling to the more remote parts instantly easier and more accessible. Some routes operate with very small 12 – 16 seater planes and can be prone to delays and cancellations due to the weather so a good degree of patience, acceptance, humour and flexibility is required. In Nepal it may sometimes not work in the exact routing you were expecting but our superb team on the ground will usually make sure you get to see and do everything you wanted to. Our ground handlers are second to none - flexible, affable, punctual, reliable, knowledgeable and will go out of their way to may your holiday the stuff of dreams.
For Chitwan National Park and Bardia National Park we suggest staying at the fabulous Barahi Lodge and Tiger Tops Karnali Lodge respectively. At least 3 nights at each is recommended so that you have time to explore the villages and culture as well as the wildlife. Chitwan is easily reached by vehicle and Bardia is best reached by short flight to Nepalganj.
For Mustang and Lo Mantang, we suggest at least 3 nights or more at each. This is a particularly remote and stark but stunning part of Nepal – almost otherworldly and similar in culture and terrain to Ladakh and Tibet. Stay at the fabulous new Shinta Mani Resort which makes a perfect base for doing day trips to nearby villages and valleys. Up in Upper Mustang, stay at The Royal Mustang - a long but staggering drive up and down. A flight from Pokhara to Jomsom is the way to go.
For fabulous short treks staying in luxury lodges instead of camping, we suggest staying in the lovely Mountain Lodges of Nepal who have lodges in the Everest region and in the Annapurna region. Spend a few days (each can be tailored to suit you) wandering these two wilderness regions, knowing you’ll have a comfy bed at night and delicious food, along with plenty of porters. No trek in the Annapurna region is complete without a few days before or after – for preparation or recovery – at the warm and welcoming Tiger Mountain Pokhara Lodge – THE place to stay just outside the hustle and bustle of Pokhara.
For the Everest region a short flight brings you to the sleepy village of Phaplu and there’s nowhere better to stay than at the gorgeous Happy House which certainly lives up to its name. Spend at least 5 days here exploring the neighbouring valleys, monasteries and taking fabulous hikes into to local peaks – you can even stay overnight up there.
No visit to Nepal is complete without at least 3 nights in the historic city of Kathmandu and a stay at wonderful Dwarika’s, perfectly situated in the centre of town. Now a huge, sprawling city, its centre retains its character. Together with its sister ‘cities’ of Lalitpur / Patan and Bhaktapur, you will get to know the real history of the Kathmandu Valley, seeing architecture of all styles and ages and religions.
At the end of a scintillating sojourn in Nepal we always suggest a few nights at exquisite Dwarika’s Dhulikhel – time to relax, walk, take stock, pamper yourself in the spa and just enjoy a final few days in the low hills outside Kathmandu. A gem of a place and the perfect end to your Nepali Odyssey.
Nepal lends itself to a multitude of different journeys and the world really is your oyster here in this magical, mountainous land. Below are a few ideas for journeys but they can be shortened, changed or extended to suit you. There will always be local flights and drives involved so don’t rush too fast – take your time to absorb and savour the beauty of the country and its people.
* You could extend and continue north to Lo Mantang in the very far north