The Kathmandu valley offers some great mountain biking trails. We travel along little-used dirt roads away from the hustle and bustle of the city. Only a short bike ride away lies a delightful world of wooded slopes, small villages, hidden temples and the views which include all of the principal peaks of the Nepal Himalaya - from Makalu to the Annapurnas providing some excellent, easy to semi - technical single track riding along old jeep roads. Throughout the trip, we will experience all of the sights, sounds, tastes and smells that make up life in Nepal’s 'Middle Hills'. We will visit the historic cities of Basantapur, Bhaktapur and Patan; hill resort of Nagarkot with its sunrise view of the entire Nepal Himalaya and the temples; monasteries and picturesque villages tucked away in the forests along the way. We are so close to the chaos of Kathmandu, yet so far off the beaten tourist trail.
This is a fun but challenging trip, suitable for those with some off-road biking experience, since a couple of trails are technical. There are also some long climbs rewarded by even bigger descents. With the mornings spent cycling above a sea of clouds, it would not be an exaggeration to call this a heaven for all levels of mountain bikers!
Day 01: Arrive in Kathmandu, Nepal (1,345m). Overnight at Hotel.
Day 02: Pre-trip meeting and ride from Kathmandu to Kakani (2,100m). Overnight at Guesthouse.
Day 03: Ride from Kakani to Budanilkantha (1,630m). Overnight at Hotel.
Day 04: Ride from Budanilkantha to Nagarkot (2,175m). Overnight at Hotel.
Day 05: Rest day at Nagarkot. Overnight at Hotel.
Day 06: Ride from Nagarkot to Palanchowk (820m). Overnight at Guesthouse.
Day 07: Ride from Palanchowk to Dhulikhel (1,600m). Overnight at Hotel.
Day 08: Ride from Dhulikhel to Balthali (1,445m). Overnight at Hotel.
Day 09: Ride from Balthali to Suryabinayak (1,360m), via Bhaktapur Durbar Square. Overnight at Guesthouse.
Day 10: Ride from Suryavinayak to Godavari (1,545m). Overnight at Hotel.
Day 11: Ride from Godavari to Kathmandu (1,345), via Patan Durbar Square. Overnight at Hotel.
Day 12: Sightseeing in Kathmandu (on a private vehicle). Overnight at Hotel.
Day 13: Final departure from Nepal.
Day 01- Arrival in Kathmandu airport (1345meters)
Our airport representative will be receiving you at Tribhuvan International airport, Kathmandu and s/he will be displaying an Age Holidays signboard outside the airport terminal. You will be then transffered to your respective hotel in our private tourist vehicle. Overnight at Hotel.
(No meals included)
Day 02 - Pre-trip meeting and ride from Kathmandu to Kakani (2,100m)
At around 8am, we host a pre-trip meeting at your hotel in Kathmandu and introduce your leader/guide. Please seek this opportunity to ask questions about the trip. This includes a final briefing and preparations for the trip. For the meeting, please make sure you bring passport, two copies of passport-size photos, and a readable copy of your travel insurance policy. During this meeting, please clear the due balance, if any, and sign the legally binding trip form as well as the non-liability disclaimer. Please inform us in advance if you will be arriving late and therefore are unable to attend the pre-trip meeting.
After the meeting, we prepare our equipment and backpack, and then ride off to Kakani. We head through the bustling back streets of Thamel and on to good wide undulating jeep tracks alongside the Nagarjun forest. Your efforts are rewarded by spectacular mountain views. On the way, taste the delicious trout fish farmed locally – which gives the route the name “Trout Highway”. We bike mostly uphill to Kakani, which is at 2,100m elevation. Once in our destination, we enjoy the stunning views of Ganesh and Langtang mountains and the valley of Likhu Khola 1,000m below. Overnight at a guesthouse.
Day 03 - Ride from Kakani to Budanilkantha (1,630m)
Head off on one of the best single tracks in the valley down towards the Budhanilkantha Temple (Sleeping Vishnu), passing through the Shivapuri National Park. Budhanilkantha is a remarkable 5th century statue of the Lord Vishnu, reclining on the coil of giant king snakes in the middle of small pond. Your efforts are rewarded by spectacular panoramic mountain views of Ganesh and Langtang Himal on the way. Moreover, the hotel you’ll be staying at in Budhanilkantha is true resort established in a rural setting with culturally rich and naturally pristine environment whose garden harbors nearly 75 species of birds and 2,000 flowering trees and shrubs. Overnight at a hotel.
Day 4- Ride from Budanilkantha to Nagarkot (2,175m)
Today we head off towards Boudhanath, the largest Buddhist stupa in Nepal. (We will not do sightseeing here today as we’ll come back for more on the second-to-last day.) Following the tarmac past Boudhanath, we take in clearer views of Kathmandu. We continue on ride to the Sankhu village and we stop here for lunch and explore this ancient town. From here we cycle along a jeep track road to wind our way up with a two-hour climb to Nagarkot – one of the most well known hillstations of the country. The views of the Himalayan mountain range from Nagarkot, especially from the Tower, more than compensate this arduous ascent. On a clear day, even Mt. Everest can be seen! We stay in Nagarkot at a guesthouse from where we can enjoy the sunset. Overnight at a hotel.
Day 05 - Rest day at Nagarkot
We take time to explore the numerous biking trails around Nagarkot, or just take some rest and enjoy the pleasant atmosphere at Nagarkot. You may also wish to visit Changu Narayan, a culturally rich temple not far from here. The temple complex includes one of the oldest Hindu temples in the Kathmandu valley and has intricate statues and stone tablets depicting ancient Hindu folklore. From here you can also enjoy good views of the valley and surrounding hills. Overnight at a hotel.
Day 06 - Ride from Nagarkot to Palanchowk (820m)
We will head down hill on a mix of single and jeep tracks. We descend through terraced paddy fields and small farming villages. We turn off to Phalanchowk and ascend 9km on a paved road (there is always a support vehicle). You'll visit the Bhagawati Temple, which houses one of the most beautiful and worshipped Bagawati goddess’ images in Nepal. The stunning image is carved of black stone and bedecked in jewelry. From your hilltop vantage point you'll have a spectacular view of the Himalaya and the surrounding valleys. Overnight at a guesthouse.
Day 07 - Ride from Palanchowk to Dhulikhel (1,600m)
After a wonderful night at Palanchowk, we start the day with an off-road descent. This stretch is technical but there is an easier option further west, which merges with the same trail. We cross the main road and continue 20km uphill to Dhulikhel and our hotel for the night. We have lunch here and for those who haven’t had enough rides, there is time in the afternoon to explore the local trails or the well-preserved town. Overnight at a hotel.
Day 08 - Ride from Dhulikhel to Balthali (1,445m)
From Dhulikhel, we ride on the flat mostly-paved route to Balthali. The traditional village with ancient architecture of the houses and innumerable temples welcome us. This definitely allows for a great spot for sightseeing. The greenery and the farms make our ride very pleasant. The village of Balthali is tucked away behind the forest of Panauti and is considered as a naturally and culturally rich destination. The cozy hotel you’ll be at sports a bird’s eye view of green terrace field, massive surrounding hills and faint streaks of the Himalayas to the north. Overnight at a hotel.
Day 09 - Ride from Balthali to Suryabinayak (1,360m), via Bhaktapur Durbar Square
We descend on the mixed jeep tracks and paved road to Panauti, another ancient village, then ride down to Bhaktapur. Listed as a UNESCO world heritage site, Bhaktapur Durbar Square is a collection of pagoda and shikhara-style temples grouped around a fifty-five-window palace of brick and wood. The main attractions include the Lion gate, the Golden gate, the Palace of fifty five windows, art galleries, and the statue of King Bhupatindra Malla. You get to experience the culture of Nepal at its finest in Bhaktapur, and also the legendary “Jujudhau,” locally made yogurt. After sightseeing here, we head to the neighboring Suryabinayak village. Overnight at a guesthouse.
Day 10 - Ride from Suryavinayak to Godavari (1,545m)
Leaving Bhaktapur behind we head toward north-west on jeep tracks and single tracks, passing paddy fields along the gorgeous and serene forest of Phulchowki on our way to Godavari. The Godvari Botanical Garden hosts a wide range of exotic and indigenous plants in its famous gardens. It has been of prime importance for scientific research and observation, and is popular among both the locals and tourists because of its pleasing landscape surrounded by evergreen natural forest. You can feel a sense of tranquility and refreshment in Godvari, which also has innumerable hiking spots, including of course, Phulchowki hill – the highest point in the Kathmandu valley. Overnight at a hotel.
Day 11 - Ride from Godavari to Kathmandu (1,345), via Patan Durbar Square
We spend time exploring some exciting trails near Godavari then onto excellent off-road trails close to Kathmandu, a pleasant conclusion to our thrilling biking session! On the way, we will pay a visit to the Patan Durbar Square, which is an enchanting combination of palace buildings, artistic courtyards and graceful pagoda temples. The former royal palace complex is the center of Patan's religious and social life, and houses a museum containing an array of bronze statues and religious objects. One remarkable monument here is a 17th-century temple dedicated to the Hindu god Krishna, built entirely of stone. We return to the hustle and bustle of Thamel on tarmac roads and celebrate our completion of this rewarding trip. Overnight at a hotel.
Day 12 - Sightseeing in Kathmandu (on a private vehicle)
Your sightseeing trip will start at around 7.00am after a hearty breakfast. You will have a private vehicle and a professional tour guide at your disposal. We visit Boudhanath Stupa, one of the biggest Buddhist shrines in the world, where we observe Buddhist monks praying in the monasteries surrounding the stupa. After Boudhanath Stupa we visit Pashupatinath, the most famous Hindu temple in the country, located on the banks of the holy Bagmati River. Here we see Hindu holy men (sadhus) meditating, pilgrims bathing and occasionally funeral pyres burning on the ghats. We then head towards Swayambhunath – also called the Monkey Temple - a Buddhist stupa perched atop a hillock on the western side. You get a magnificent view of the valley from here.
In the evening, have a relaxing stroll and a last-minute shopping spree in Thamel and Basantapur. We host a farewell dinner in a typical Nepali-style restaurant with cultural performances (dancing and singing with costumes) tonight to celebrate our hard work and achievement in the biking trip.
You have the option to extend your trip to continue onto Chitwan jungle safari, Pokhara sightseeing, trekking, rafting & bungee, Kathmandu valley shopping tour, scenic Everest flight, and other activities. Overnight at a hotel.
(Breakfast and Farewell Dinner Included)
Day 13 - Final departure from Nepal
The trip concludes – our airport representative will drop you at Kathmandu’s Tribhuwan International Airport for your flight departure from Nepal.