Nepal is home to eight of the world's ten highest peaks including Mount Everest on the border with Tibet. With no less than ten natural and cultural UNESCO World Heritage Sites Nepal is as historically interesting as it is scenically breathtaking.
The Nepal cycling holiday offers a complete experience of this wonderful country's varied landscape and culture. Bicycling from the Kathmandu Valley you will travel over mountain passes and into the tropical plains of the Terai to explore the flora and fauna of Chitwan National Park. You will take an exhilarating flight up to Jomsen over snow-capped peaks, and fly right between the Himalayan giants Annapurana and Dhaulagiri with breathtaking views. From Jomsen we cycle up between the Nilgiri Massifs to one of the holiest temples in Nepal, Muktinath at the foot of the mighty Thorung La Pass (5416m). From here we follow single track downhill crossing a dramatic suspension bridge and riding along the beautiful Kaligandaki River, one of the deepest gorges in the world, past ancient monasteries and traditional villages. cobble paths, through ice fed streams as the landscape soars towards the snow-capped peaks of the Himalayas.
Nepal has long exerted a pull on the Western imagination. Join us on this exhilarating and memorable cycling adventure holiday and discover its wonders for yourself.
Day to Day Itinerary:
Day 1: Arrive Kathmandu. On arrival you will be met at Tribhuvan International Airport (located 6 miles from central Kathmandu) and transferred to our hotel. The rest of the day is free to acclimatise and explore the bustling capital city of Nepal. Accommodation: hotel.
Day 2: Kathmandu. This morning we embark on a fascinating city tour by bicycle. Kathmandu is one of the world's oldest cities and is rich in cultural heritage. The old part of the city is criss-crossed with narrow medieval streets and centres on Durbar Square, a World Heritage Site. It boasts distinctive pagoda-roofed temples, old monasteries and numerous historic monuments. Accommodation: hotel.
Day 3: Kathmandu - Nauboise. We set off through the suburbs and witness the modern face of Kathmandu which serves as the political and economic centre of Nepal. Beyond the historic temples and monuments it feels like another developing world city embracing 21st century life. We reach the main Prithvi Highway which connects Kathmandu to Pokhara and head towards Thankot.
From Thankot the route becomes more rural as we approach the highest point of the Kathmandu Valley - the Thankot Pass (1,550 metres). From the summit there are amazing views of the Langtang peaks, Ganesh Himal, Manaslu and on a clear day as far as the Annapurna mountain range. The next section of the route is steep, winding downhill all the way to the small town of Nauboise, our overnight stop.
Day 4: Nauboise - Daman. A tough but very rewarding ride today. The stretch of the Tribhuvan Highway between Nauboise and Daman has been described as the most spectacular bike ride in Nepal, if not the world. Until the bypass through Mugling opened about two decades ago this was the only road to India. Today there is little traffic along the route which is reasonable quality tarmac. The road spirals up and down endless hills and passes through broad valleys and small villages.
We climb in two stages to reach Daman. Our accommodation is located 2.5km beyond the town. Accommodation: hotel. Cycling distance: 54 km.
Day 5: Daman - Hetauda. After breakfast there is a short 5km ascent to the pass above Daman at 2,500 metres. From the summit we'll look down over the plunging slopes of the Mahabharat Lekh which leads to the Terai, the low plains of Nepal. For the rest of the day we enjoy the ultimate downhill ride through pine and rhododendron forests which eventually give way to semi-tropical vegetation as the air becomes more humid.
Accommodation: Guest house. Cycling distance: 53 km.
Day 6: Hetauda - Chitwan National Park. A much flatter ride today after the adrenalin-pumping downhill of yesterday. We are now in central Terai, a region of hot subtropical plains and the surrounding vegetation reflects this. Sal (hard wood) and Kal (silk cotton) trees line the roads to the Royal Chitwan National Park. At Tadi, the route diverts onto a dirt track to the outskirts of the park area at Sauraha. We overnight at a hotel in the Chitwan National Park which was designated as a World Heritage Site in 1984.
Accommodation: hotel. Cycling distance: 72 km.
Day 7: Chitwan National Park. Today is a welcome break after the exertion of the previous days of cycling. You may choose to rest and recuperate at the hotel or venture into the Chitwan National Park. The best place to start is the Visitor Centre at Sauraha which provides fascinating information on wildlife and conservation programmes. Accommodation: hotel. The park is a popular destination for ecotourists and activities (at an extra charge) include: Canoeing, Elephant safari, Guided jungle, Bird watching, Village tour.
Day 8: Chitwan National Park - Lumbini. We leave the park and spend the whole day cycling through the western Terai. Today's ride offers a real glimpse into local life in this part of Nepal. We pass through picturesque thatched villages where farming methods have changed little in centuries. Cycling is the ideal way to discover this beautiful area and to meet friendly villagers living a traditional and simple life.
Day 9: Lumbini - North of Bartung. We set off from Lumbini towards Butwal (pop.75,600), the largest town before Pokhara. The terrain is predominantly flat and it is an easy ride. Once through the hustle and bustle of Butwal we leave the plains behind. The scenery becomes more rugged as we ascent into the mountains. It is an agricultural area where little seems to have changed in centuries. It is a slow uphill push as the road climbs high above a river raging below.
Accommodation: guest house. Cycling distance: 81 km.
Day 10: North of Bartung - Waling. Another thrilling ride as we continue on roads cut through high mountains and deep valleys. The terrain is more undulating than yesterday as we journey up and down through beautiful surroundings. It is an area of golden sunlit terraces, green patchwork fields, gurgling streams and deep ravines. Our route passes through tiny villages where local people live in mud houses with thatched roofs. We witness scenes from a bygone era - children playing with home-made toys in the streets, elderly villagers sitting on grass mats in the sunshine, farmers ploughing the land by hand. Cycling distance: 46 km.
Day 11: Waling - Pokhara. We set off along the winding Siddhartha Highway which links Waling to Pokhara. It is a rugged, dramatic landscape offering breathtaking panoramic vistas and there are several viewpoints en-route. During the first 47 km the road undulates from around 850 - 1100 metres until we reach the pass (1,284 metres) which is the highest point along the highway. The road then nose dives for 3km only to rise again slightly before tumbling down to Pokhara (827 metres). Cycling distance: 64 km.
Day 12: Pokhara. We have a break from our bikes today in order to spend more time discovering Pokhara and its environs. If Kathmandu is the cultural hub of Nepal, Pokhara is its adventure centre. There is the opportunity to sample some of the activities on offer in this spectacular setting (for an extra charge). They include: trekking, rafting, kayaking, canyoning, paragliding, horse riding and jungle safaris. Pokhara is also a place of remarkable natural beauty.
Day 13: Pokhara - Jomsom - Muktinath - Jomsom. This morning we take a short flight from Pokhara to Jomsom (2,713 metres). Jomsom is the headquarters of the Mustang District and a key location along the popular Annapurna Circuit trekking route. We cycle off-road from here through a dramatic, arid landscape towards Muktinath (3,825 metres). It is a tough ride over rocky terrain which resembles the Tibetan plateau with some fascinating rock formations en route. Muktinath is as pilgrimage centre for Buddhists and Hindus.
Cycling distance: 45 km.
Day 14: Jomsom - Beni. We set off from Jomsom alongside the Kali Gandaki river over sandy and rocky tracks. Today's ride is 100% off road over rolling hills. We pass through various villages including Marpha, a picturesque place with white-washed houses and cobbled streets which is well known for its apple production. The next section is easy riding, following a jeep track to Kalopani, a beautiful village set below the Dhaulagiri Himal. From the village there are panoramic views of Dhaulagiri, the Nilgiri peaks and Annapurna I.
Cycling distance: 75 km.
Day 15: Beni - Pokhara - Kathmandu. Today's ride is 100% on-road which will be a relief after the last couple of days of dirt tracks. We leave Beni, headquarters of the Parbat District, and head back into the tranquil countryside. We continue following the Kali Gandaki river in order to reach the Baglung Highway.
We cycle along it to Naudanda, an attractive village perched on a hilltop surrounded by steep rice terraces. From there we ride to the Sarangkot viewpoint (1,592 metres) which offers the most spectacular panoramas in the Pokhara area. From there we can marvel at Annapurna (8,019 metres), Manasalu (8,165 metres), Ganesh Himal (7,446 metres), Dhaulagiri (8,167 metres) and Machhapuchhre (6,993 metres).
It is then a steep downhill ride back to Pokhara with lakeside views en-route. We celebrate the end of this epic cycle ride and bid farewell to our bicycles. We then transfer by road back to Kathmandu along the Prithvi Highway (6 hours approx). Overnight in Kathmandu. Accommodation: Hotel. Cycling distance: 75 km.
Day 16: Tour ends. Transfer to the airport for our flight home!
Airfare is not included in the tour price.
- All accommodation will be in hotels
- Guest houses or tea houses (We choose accommodation on the basis of comfort rather than luxury. Our prices are based on sharing a twin room; single rooms are sometimes available at extra cost).
- All food is provided on the tour, except in Kathmandu, Chitwan and Pokhara where we only supply breakfast
- All transportation and local guides within Nepal
- Entrance fees to Chitwan National Park are included however other optional sights are not covered on the tour cost.
- International flights are not included in the tour costs
Note: Spending money depends on your taste for souvenirs, drinks etc. We estimate that £200 will be more than enough to cover the 16 day tour. There is a domestic airport departure tax of 170 Nep RP and international airport departure tax of 1695 Nep RP. Visas are £35 (30 days / multiple entry).
About This Supplier
Joined InfoHub: Mar 2011
M20818 is a specialist company taking small groups of cyclists to spectacular, remote areas of the world. We offer a unique blend of physical challenges, cultural experiences and cycling camaraderie, at highly competitive prices. M20818 guides are experienced cyclists and tour leaders. Destinations include Laos,...
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