Pokhara; a city is best known for tourist attraction in Nepal certainly dwells in a majestic view of the Annapurna Massif along with the lakes, caves and the natural beauty that surrounds by. But since it is a major place for the tourists, the city is somewhat crowded. So, if you would like to have a tranquil and calm environment to refresh and re-energize yourself then you should visit some of the places which are nearby Pokhara as the other places also have their attractions. Seeing beyond Pokhara, especially to its outskirts along with some nearby villages will be a new experience for you. So, to this note, here are the top 10 places which you need to visit beyond Pokhara.
With an elevation of 1030 meters, Bandipur is a village that lies 60 km east of Pokhara. The village, now a commercial center; is widely known for providing great natural scenery and Newari culture and tradition. Due to the very reason, the Bandipur is also regarded as “an open museum of Newari culture”. Besides this, the village is also popular for having one of the biggest caves of Nepal- Bandipur Cave. The village is thus best for eco-tourism, cultural tourism, for research and anthropological studies. Nevertheless, it is an amazing place to visit as you can see the mountains, trees which add beauty to the old houses.
Ghorepani Poon Hill
With an altitude of 3200 m, Ghorepani Poon Hill is one of the best trekking destinations in Nepal. With ample of natural vegetation and scenic views, this area is simply fascinating. Magar people; being indigenous of this place, the place just below Poon Hill is also known as Magar village which is in Ghorepani. Providing a panoramic view of the Himalayas, especially the Annapurna Massif along with some other peaks like Dhaulagiri, Nilgiri, Tukuche, etc. Furthermore, it is also a great place to view the sunrise. Therefore, it is a must-visit place for tourists as this is considered as one of the easiest paths for trekking, and of course, it’s a highly recommended place for trekkers.
Natural Hot Spring Jhinu danda
If you are trekking to Annapurna Base Camp, then you can find Natural Hot Spring at Jhinudanda on the way. Here you can just relax and enjoy looking at nature. By getting into this natural hot spring, you can look at the natural scenery along with fascinating houses and lodges, and also will be able to explore the people living there, their culture and tradition, the food that they eat, etc. So, this place is there for rendering you a tranquil feeling. This pool is built into the riverbank of Modi Khola. During this time, if it is summer or hot and humid weather then you could also take a dip in the icy river next to the pool. But for this, you will require permission.
Lying at the altitude of 2012 meters above the sea level, Ghandruk is a small village in the foothill of Annapurna Massif. It is a common destination for tourists, especially for short-distance trekkers which encompass many trails along the way. Since the Gurung community has a bigger settlement here, this place is also known as Gurung Village. With a mixture of traditional customs and modern practices, this area becomes a place to explore for sure. Moreover, the views from the place- the mountains, the village houses, and the clean and green fields add color to the place. To reach Ghandruk, it will take you around 5-6 hours of walk from Pokhara. If you are planning to drive then it is 42 km far from Pokhara.
With an elevation of 1350 meters, Tansen is a Municipality and administrative center of Palpa District. Reaching Tansen, it will take you around 5-6 hours’ drive from Pokhara. Regarding which, the bus service leaves at 6 am every day from Pokhara if you want to go via a public bus. It is a hill station that is mostly known for metal crafts, heritage sites, and handlooms. It is a great place to explore the old artistic houses and architecture there. Being a settlement for the Magar community, Tansen got its name where Tansen means “northern settlement” in Magar language. One of the most popular tourist destinations in Tansen is the Rani Mahal.
Kumari House is also known as Kumari Ghar is located at Kathmandu Durbar Square. The place where the Kumari House is located is also known as KumariChowk. Built-in 1757 by King Jaya Prakash Malla, and further renovated in 1966, the Kumari Ghar is the house where the Living Goddess lives. This three-storeyed building is fascinating due to the decoration done here. The decorations here include wood-carved reliefs of gods and symbols. For tourists, you can enter the courtyard and look and take photographs at the decoration of the doors, pillars, etc. but you are not permitted to take the photograph of the Kumari. The Kumari; living Goddess sometimes appears in the first-floor window during the morning or late afternoon or Indra Jatra (a Nepali festival).
With an elevation of 2175 meters from the sea level, Nagarkot is mostly known for great panoramic views of the Himalayas, especially during sunrise or sunset. Located at the North-Eastern side of Kathmandu, Nagarkot takes around 6 and a half hours’ drive from Pokhara. Surrounded by thickly forested hills full of pine trees, it renders you speechless with an amazing view of the Kathmandu valley and the Himalayan ranges all at once. Moreover, hiking and mountain biking is also a common thing here. The major attraction here is the Nagarkot View Tower from where you can see the 360-degree view from the top. Getting here, you also need to pay for entrance fees.
With the highest elevation of 2100 meters, Ghalegaun is located at around 115 kilometers east of Pokhara. This village is widely known for providing you with an amazing view of the Himalayas like MacchapuchhreHimal, Mt. Annapurna I, II and IV, Mt.Lamjung, Mt.Buddha, Himalchuli, etc. It is mostly known for homestay and trekking. Here, you can find the traditionally built houses with rich cultural significance. The natives of this village are from the Gurung community and due to this reason, it is also known as Gurung village. Besides this, the local food is one of the famous things over here.
Chitwan Tharu Village
Chitwan Tharu village is located at Chitwan which is around 4 hours’ drive from Pokhara. In this village, you will be able to explore and experience Tharu culture and traditions from a wide spectrum. Here, the Tharu people have a unique custom of electing a chief of the village once a year which is known as the Badghar system of electing. Moreover, cultural performances like the local Tharu dance is one of the most popular things about this village. The two-storied houses across the village along with the daily lifestyle of the Tharu community in this community is something that will widen your eyes. Going there, you can take a regular tour, take an ox cart tour, walk or take a bicycle. However, you cannot visit this community alone.
With an altitude of 1700 meters, Sirubari is a small village situated around 56 kilometers south of Pokhara. The indigenous people of the village are the Gurung community thus, rich in Gurung culture. Having won a PATA- Gold Award in the year 2001 for outstanding presentation in hospitality and cultural heritage, most of the houses here offer home-stay. Henceforth, Sirubari is best known for home-stay facilities, rich cultural significance and a great view of the Himalayan ranges. Moreover, bird watching, observing the wildlife staying in a lush green forest; it’s the best way to explore the local life of the Nepalese people.