Pokhara: All in One; Nature, Culture & Adventure!
Peace Pagoda, Pokhara
Pokhara is one of the most beautiful cities of Nepal. The city of lakes, Pokhara is located in Kaski district of Gandaki State, some 204 Km west from Kathmandu, capital city of Nepal. Pokhara is a capital of Gandaki State; there are 7 states in Nepal. Pokhara is rich in natural heritage as well as culturally diverse; it has recently growing the popularity in adventure sport activities. The city can be explored in all terms of travel, it attracts equally to Children to Senior citizen. Pokhara is the destination of everyone from Honeymoon Trips in luxurious resorts to simple guest houses or lodges nearby the Fewa Lake.
Pokhara is also known as the gateway of many trekking routes. The top three highest mountains of the world out of 10, Mt Dhaulagiri (8,167 m), Mt Manaslu (8,663 m), Mt Annapurna –I (8,091 m) are just maximum 50 km from Pokhara valley. The shed of Mount Fishtail or Machhapuchhre (6,993 m) can be seen very clearly in Phewa or Fewa Lake. You can simply watch the Mountains of Annapurna range from your hotel. Here I am writing some info about what you exactly can do in Pokhara in three typical topics of – Nature, Culture & Adventure.
Nature: Pokhara the Natural Heritage in Nepal
Pokhara is a valley located in a central north of Nepal, very close to the Himalayan range; the valley is made by Seti Gandaki, other small rivers and several lakes. Within just 30 km from the valley you can find the elevation between 827 m to 1750 m from the sea level, and three highest peaks (Dhaulagir, Manaslu & Annapurna-1) out of 10 are just about 50 km from Pokhara valley. It means, you can simply imagine how naturally special this Pokhara is?
The Seti Gandaki (White Gandaki in local Nepali language) is a main river in Pokhara which directly flows from the Himalayas. There are many other small rivers/streams in Pokhara valley. Origin of Annapurna Himalayan range, the Seti Gandaki River looks magic white water (clearly opposite of the Kali Gandaki River, which looks dark blue-black) which vaninshes underground in some areas near Pokhara. The Seti River Gorge, there are many gorges which are more than hundreds of meters deep & few meters wide, is very popular among tourists and one of the major destinations of a day sightseeing in Pokhara. The river finally joins to the Trishuli River near Devaghat to make its way to the ocean.
There are 9 lakes in whole Kaski district where Phewa Lake, Beganash Lake and Rupa Lake are in Pokhara. The Phewa Lake is just south of the Pokhara city and popular among the lakes of Nepal and major tourist attraction of Pokhara. The shed of Machhapuchhre (Fishtail) reflects in Phewa Lake like we see our face in a mirror. Tal Barahi Temple is situated in the middle of the Phewa Lake. Lakeside is a second Thamel of Nepal where you can observe nightlife in the bank of the lake and there are many hotels/resorts to choose a right accommodation for you. You can go for shopping to buy a gift for your family and friends after completing your trip or even you can purchase in the last minute if you are short of the equipment which will require for your trekking in Annapurna region of Nepal. Begnas lake is second largest lake in Pokhara and third largest in Nepal after Fewa Lake. Third largest lake in Pokhara valley is Rupa Lake. Beganash and Rupa Lakes are very near and can visit together. Some local temples, view tower, Zoological Park can be next spot to explore the places if you reach at Beganash and Rupa Lake. Boating, Fishing, Bird Watching activities can be done along with cycling in these areas.
Mahendra Cave is located in Batulechaur, near Kali Khola in Pokhara. The cave is 200 m long, dark and dripping water on the head makes the walk interesting and adventure. Another Bat Cave is nearby Mahendra cave, where you can reach in just ten minutes’ walk.
Devi's Falls, Patale Chhango in Nepali language is another natural gifted attraction in Pokhara. It is a waterfall of about 150 m long and it runs below 30 m from the ground. The fall looks very beautiful. You can try your luck at luck pond at Devi’s Falls throwing a coin in a statue of God.
Mahadev Cave is another naturally gifted attraction in Pokhara. The water comes in the cave from Devi’s Falls. Hindus and tourists from all over the world make their way to this shrine to worship the Shiva. Dripping water on your head, you can walk as there are electric lights for your convenience. There are two parts of Cave, in the first part there is a temple of lord Shiv where you cannot take the picture but in second part you can take the pictures/videos. The second part will be closed during Monsoon.
Sarangkot is a popular Hill Station at 1,600 meters height from sea level which is located in western Pokhara. Most of the tourists who visit Pokhara make their way to Sarangkot in the early morning to witness the beautiful sunrise view. The hill is also famous for mesmerizing panoramic view of white capped Mountains including Dhaulagiri, Manaslu & Annapurna. It is also one of the best paragliding stations in the world.
Beautiful Fewa lake with the mesmerizing sunset.
Culture: Cultural Pokhara, beyond the Nature
Mostly people forgot to talk about the cultural heritage in Pokhara as Natural Heritage sites in Pokhara leads its tourism from the top of the mountains so cultural issue always remain in a shed of the mountains. Unlike Kathmandu, which is dominated by Newar tradition and culture Pokhara is the city of various communities like Brahmin, Chhetri, Gurung, Magar, Newar and others, if we discuss about religion, Hindus, Buddhists, Muslims, Christians and others are there in Pokhara. Cultural Heritages have made the Pokhara more beautiful with its natural phenomenon.
Tal Barahi Temple, Fewa Lake Pokhara
There are many temples, Stupas, Mosques, Church and many others like Tal Barahi, World Peace Stupa, Gupteshwar Mahadev Temple, Bindabasini Temple, Bhairav Mandir, Dharmashila Bihar, Bhadrakali Temple, Jangchub Monastery, Jame mosque, Ram Ghat Church, which is believed the first church in Nepal established in 1952.
Tal Barahi is a temple of Goddess. The temple is located in the middle of the Fewa Lake, Many animals’ sacrifices during the Chaite Dashain and Bada Dashain festivals.
white as a symbol of peace & prosperity, the World Peace Stupa is situated in a hill-top, just above Fewa Lake. This is not only Buddhists shrine but also a heavenly place for everyone beyond the religion.
Gupteshwar Mahadev Temple is shrine of lord Shiva, situated in the Gupteshwar Cave, very close to the Devi’s Falls. People celebrate the festivals like Shivaratri, all Mondays throughout the year and special occasion on the month of Shrawan, Balachaturdashi, Ganesh Chauthi etc.
is a temple of Goddess Bhagawati, devotees of Devi Bhagawati from all over the world gather and worship Goddess on Durga Puja, Bada Dashain and Chaite Dashain. Some people sacrifice the animals believing on fulfillment of their wishes. Some people go to this temple for wedding with family and friends. Bhadrakali temple is also similar of Bindabasini, worshiping Goddess Bhagawati or Devi.
Bhairav temple is popular cultural site among Hindus and Buddhists together, especially Newar community for their Bhairav Dance, playing traditional musical instrument, wearing different masks on their face. The shrine is devotional for lord Shiva. They perform the dance with typical Newari prayerful songs.
Dharmsheela Buddha Vihar is one of the Buddhist institutions in Pokhara which lets us an opportunity to explore more about the Buddhism. Fine metallic images of Buddha and Buddhist culture, a beautiful statue of Lord Buddha gifted by Thailand make the place really peaceful and devotional.
Karmadubgyu Chokhorling Monastery is located in Jaykot Danda, a hill station in Kahunkot is a Buddhist heritage site. Few hundreds of students study Buddhism in the Monastery. The Monastery welcomes everyone with its local fresh open- air and peaceful environment which will give us some relief from the congested city.
Jangchub Choeling Monastery is a famous Tebetan Monastery, located in Hyanja, about 12 Km from main Pokhara city. monastery was established in Pokhara, Nepal by Tibetan refugees to honor their spiritual leader Dalai Lama. They performed original Tibetan Buddhist ceremonies & mystical rites. monastery is a center of attraction in Pokhara for the locals and tourists from the world. People can learn the Tibetan Buddhism, their culture, tradition and life style. There is another Tibetan refugee monastery, named Tashilling Monastery in Chhorepatan, Pokhara.
Apart from Hindus & Buddhist’s shrines there are several Mosques of Muslim devotees in Pokhara, the oldest one is Jame Mosque at Miya Patan, Pokhara. Muslims arrive here to pray and recite the Namaz.
Ramghat church is believed the first church in Nepal established in 1952. There are many churches in Pokhara as conversion rate into Christianity from Buddhism and Hinduism is increasing everyday due to various reasons.
There are several museums to explore more about culture and lifestyle of Pokhara and western Nepalese people of Gandaki state. Pokhara Regional Museum is the best place to explore about the whole Gandaki state.
The Natural History Museum also known as Annapurna Museum has many collections of stones, various flora and fauna found on this region.
Gorkha Memorial Museum displays the history of world-famous Gurkha soldier.
International Mountain Museum is the best place to get the right information about the Mountains around the world and its dimensions.
Pokhara celebrates all the festivals which whole Nepal does; apart from them Pokhara hosts the street festival in Lakeside road from Hallan Chowk to Barahi Chowk. All tourists arrive in the street to taste few hundreds of cuisines. There are some carnival rides as well to mark this festival and fireworks at midnight roars the venue, Basundhara Park at Pokhara.
Adventure: Pokhara the Adventure Hub in Nepal
Pokhara is the capital of adventure sports activities in Nepal. The beautiful city, Pokhara offers plenty of adventure activities to you to fulfill your dream of adventurous. There is no exact answer of the question on how long you should stay in Pokhara since there are tons of activities Pokhara offers you to make your stay comfortable with fun, relaxed & adventurous. You collect 100% long life memories from Pokhara alone in Nepal.
- Trekking around Pokhara
- Day Hike around Pokhara
- Paragliding in Pokhara
- Zip Flyer in Pokhara
- Boating in Pokhara
- Bungee Jump in Pokhara
- Ultra-Light Flight in Pokhara
- Skydiving in Pokhara
- River Rafting in Pokhara
- Cannoning in Pokhara
- Mountain Bike Riding in Pokhara
- Kayaking in Pokhara
- Paramotor in Pokhara
- Fishing in Pokhara