When it comes to trekking, most people quickly leave the Kathmandu Valley to head for various mountain locations. Yet the Valley rim contains some of the finest trekking possibilities in all of Nepal! There are great views of the Kathmandu Valley as well as some of the highest peaks in the world. There is an incredible national park within a 30 minute drive of the city, yet feels like a world away. This trek will take you to Shivapuri National Park, where you will trek to the fantastic mountain overlooks of Nagarkot with its wonderful sunrises and sunsets over the mighty Himalayas.
There are wonderful dense forests to explore that feature monkeys and leopards. These forests are of oak and rhododendron. There are great opportunities for bird watching as the Kathmandu Valley is a major flyover for birds migrating between Siberia and points farther south. The valley rim lies between 2000 and 2800 meters. Shivapuri Hill is 2729 meters, the highest point of this trek, offering a stunning view of a number of Himalayan snowcapped mountain ranges. From these viewpoints, you can see as far west as the Annapurna Range and on clear days, Mt. Everest in the east. In between are Mt. Manaslu (8th highest peak), the Ganesh Himal Range, The Langtang Range, Mt. Dorjeelakpa, Mt. Shisapangma and many more.
This is a relatively easy trek, yet anyone will find it most enjoyable. It doesn't matter if you are a seasoned trekker, or a novice, the views from this trek are just outstanding. And along the way, you will enjoy the culture and the hospitality of the Nepali.
The trek also begins with a flight over the mountains to Mt. Everest and back, giving you a wonderful close-up view of the world's highest mountain. Swiss Nepal Family Trekking & Expedition is proud to be able to offer this exciting and enjoyable trek right in our own backyard: the rim of the Kathmandu Valley.
DAY 1 – Arrival in Kathmandu, transfer to hotel by private car.
DAY 2 – Mountain Flight & Valley Sightseeing Tour
DAY 3 – Drive to Sundharijal and hike to Chisapani (elev. 2215 m) 4 – 5 hours. Stay in hotel.
DAY 4 – Trek to Nagarkot (elev. 1932 m) 6 – 7 hours. Stay in Three Star hotel.
DAY 5 – Trek to Changu Narayan and Drive to Kathmandu. Stay in 3 Star Hotel.
DAY 6 – Departure
DAY 1 – Arrival: Arrive in Kathmandu where you will be met by your representative of Swiss Nepal Family Trekking & Expedition. You will be taken to your hotel where you can relax before your evening meal. There will be an orientation session in the evening. If time allows, we will take a trip to Swayambhu, one of the seven UNESCO World Heritage Sites in the Kathmandu Valley which offers an incredible view of the Valley as well as the oldest religious site in the city.
DAY 2 – Sightseeing in Kathmandu Valley: We will start off the day with a mountain flight to Mt. Everest and back, seeing the world's highest peak from the comfort of your airplane seat. Then we are off to see three to four of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites today. We begin with Kathmandu's Durbar Square, the place of where the medieval kings ruled for centuries. There are almost 60 different temples here, some even with erotic carvings from the Kama Sutra. Then it is off to Boudhanath to see Nepal's largest stupa (3rd largest in the world.) This is the center of Tibetan Buddhism and Tibetan refugees in Nepal. Besides this impressively large stupa, there are around 50 monasteries in the area. Nearby is Pashupatinath, the most holy Hindu shrine in Nepal, and a pilgrimage site for Hindus from around the world. If we were unable to visit Swayambhu (a/k/a Monkey Temple), we will journey to this holy place as well. This is one of the oldest holy sites in the Kathmandu Valley, dating back over 2000 years. We will spend the night at our Three Star Hotel in Kathmandu.
DAY 3 – Sundharijal, Trek to Chisapani (elev. 2215 m): We start trekking today, and what a trek it is! We take a private vehicle to our starting point at Sundharijal which takes about one to 1 ½ hours. From here, we will hike to Chisapani to spend the night. There will be some excellent mountain views along the way. We will spend the night in a good hotel in Chisapani. Trekking time is 4 – 5 hours.
DAY 4 – Trek to Nagarkot (elev. 2195 m): We continue our trek past fascinating mountain villages, streams and waterfalls. On this day, there are plenty of great views of the mountains as we pass through Shivapuri National Park. The park is remote in feeling with great views and wonderful forest trails. Our destination is the village of Nagarkot where we will see a great sunset over the Himalayas. We will spend the night in a Three Star Hotel on the mountain.
DAY 5 – Trek to Changu Narayan: Today's journey will begin with a wonderful sunrise views of the mighty Himalayas. From there, we will complete the last day of our trek as we make our way to the village of Changu Narayan. The entire village is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and has the oldest temple in the Kathmandu Valley. It sits on a hillock overlooking the valley. The streets have no vehicles, but are only for walking. Here you will see craftsmen doing wood carvings as they have done for centuries. It is a really quaint little place, well worth your visit. From here, we will take private vehicle to our Three Star hotel in Kathmandu. In the evening, enjoy a farewell dinner and a cultural show. Trekking time is around 5 – 6 hours.
Day 6 – Departure: All good things must come to an end, and this short trip is no exception. Your representative at Swiss Nepal Family Trekking & Expedition will escort you by private vehicle to the airport to see you off to your next destination. Before leaving, why not discuss a return trip to Nepal to explore other parts of this great nation. Your representative at Swiss Nepal Family Trekking & Expedition can put together all kinds of vacation packages for your next holiday.
While traveling with Swiss Nepal Family Trekking & Expedition, your all around safety and satisfaction is of our paramount concern. Please note that the Trip Leader has the authority to cancel or amend any part of this itinerary if it is necessary due to any safety concerns. We leave no stone unturned to keep the itinerary mentioned above, but as this adventure does include traveling in the Himalayas, we can’t guarantee that it will not be necessary to make changes if conditions so warrant. Some of these factors include extreme weather conditions, unexpected natural disaster, health conditions of any of our group members, etc, can all be contributing factors necessitating changes. Swiss Nepal Family Trekking & Expedition’s Trip Leader will try to ensure that the trip runs as per plan, but we kindly request that you be flexible if need be.
All accommodations for the Nagarkot/Shivapuri Hiking with Mountain Flight Tour are on a twin sharing basis with inclusive trip costs. The Three Star Hotels have been checked out personally by our staff and they offer a high degree of hygiene as well as high standard of service. When trekking, we will use local tea houses which usually offer unheated rooms and wooden beds with foam mattresses. Many of the tea houses have shared bathrooms and washing areas. If you are a solo traveler, we will share a room. If you would prefer a single room that is a possibility by paying an additional fee. However, please understand that with some of the remote places; a single room might not be possible, depending upon location and trek. Be sure to talk to your representative at Swiss Nepal Family Trekking & Expedition about the single room option.
During the trek, we can enjoy typical Nepali food as well as some different ethnic cuisine. Some places may even offer some international foods (Tibetan, Continental, Italian, Indian, etc.) ranging from pizza to finger chips (French Fries). Many places will offer a variety of soft and hard drinks and snacks. We will have lunch on the trail, ranging from a picnic lunch to local accommodations, depending upon the trekking area. A farewell dinner with cultural show and breakfast will be served when in Kathmandu.