Nagarkot is in Nepal.
Nagarkot is 32 km NE of Kathmandu on the northern fringe of the Kathmandu valley. Nagarkot is famous for its Himalayan views- the Himalayan peaks at sunrise are a magnificent sight to behold. Many wish upon arrival they would have planned for more than one day to stay.
Nagarkot is an international tourist destination with spectacular views of the whole Langtang range, sunrise on the mountains and sunset views. Located approx. 7000 ft (2000 m) above Sea level and 28 kms from Kathmandu international airport, Nagarkot is a world famous hills station commanding breathtaking views of the majestic Himalayas, rolling hills, deep valleys, lush pine forests in a quaint rural atmosphere.
Considered as the best viewpoint spot to enjoy the magnificent sunrise and sunset with spectacular Himalayan vistas, Nagarkot commands one of the broadest views of the snow capped Himalayas in the Kathmandu valley ( 8 Himalayan ranges of Nepal out of 13 from here). The ranges include Annapurna range, Manaslu range, Ganesh himal range, Langtang range, Jugal range, Rolwaling range, Mahalangur range( Everest range) and Numbur range with splendid views of the Kathmandu valley and shivapuri national park.
Situated in a strategic location, Nagarkot was an ancient fort of the Kathmandu valley to monitor external activities of another kingdoms. Later, it became a summer retreat places for the royals before becoming popular as an international hill station.
So near yet so far from heat, dust, smoke and city's hustle-bustle, Nagarkot is a small village where tourists love to come here for acclimatization before heading to trekking or for a good rest after trekking. Locals love to come here to enjoy the beauty of nature with fresh mountain air and to rejuvenate their body, mind and spirit in a tranquil atmosphere.
It is best to travel by private-hire cars and taxis to Nagarkot. Tourist shuttle buses also operate. From the international airport, it should take about 40 mins and from the city center, about an hour. A scenic drive via the ancient city of Bhaktapur and tiny villages along meandering mountain roads is a journey by itself, before arriving at Nagarkot.
Activities to do in Nagarkot
There are many nice walk for those wishing to stretch their legs and enjoy the beauty of Nature. There are several pleasant strolls to explore the local village and surroundings. Some nearby suggested walking destinations are:
1. Walk to the 360 view tower
Level: Easy Time duration: 3 hours Altitude: 2200 metres
It is a very scenic walk where we can enjoy the unobstructed landscapes, deep valleys, rolling hills, forests, etc. This is the highest point of Nagarkot ( 2200 meters) above sea level commanding 360 degree panoramic views of the kathmandu valley in the west, himalayas in the north and deep lush jungles in the south and east. You will pass the military camp on the way and it is a very peaceful and easy walk to do with the kids as well.
2. Nature walk Level: Easy Time duration: 1.5 hours in total Altitude: 1900 metres It is a very beautiful walk inside lush pine trees with only birds inside. We can gently stroll across the pine trees while inhaling fresh mountain air and enjoying the beauty of Nature with nothing to disturb you. It is a very peaceful walk that any guest of any age can do it in a slow pace. It is one of the recreational outdoor activity that you can engage in during your stay in Nagarkot.
3. Tamang Heritage Walk
Level: Medium Time duration: 3-4 hours Altitude: 1800 metres
People living in the local village are mostly Tamang. Tamangs are one of the ethnic groups of Nepal originially from Tibet. They have their own unique dialect, culture, tradition, way of living, etc. A visit to tamang village will give you a glimpse of mountain people and their living settlement.
4. Walk to Changu Narayan Temple
Level: Medium Time duration: 4 hours Altitude: 1500 metres
This hiking route is one of the most popular hiking route around the kathmandu valley. It is a very beautiful walk where we explore local tamang culture with their local settlements for the half way whereas the half way is through the lush pine forests. It is a 15 kms walk with an altitude drop of around 450 metres and we arrive in a Changu Narayan temple premises, one of the seven World Heritage sites in the kathmandu valley.
5. Walk to Sankhu
Level: Medium Time duration: 3 hours Altitude: 1400 metres Distance : 11 kms
The hike to sankhu works best as a way of returning to kathmandu.Sankhu is an ancient Newari town located at the fringe of Kathmandu valley, 20 km northeast of Ratnapark. In the ancient times, this town was a trade route to Tibet from Kathmandu. The town is ideal for studying the traditional architecture and culture of Newari community. Sankhu is also home to the temples of Bajrayogini and Shalinadi. Every year, the fair of Shalinadi takes place in this town when thousands of devotees from different parts of the country come to celebrate. From Sankhu, one could also embark on a short trek to Nagarkot and Melamchi.
In Sankhu, you can visit to the Vajra Jogini Temple. The small and pleasant town of sankhu is a major pilgrimage site with the temple of vajrajogini. This legendary village is worth a visit because of its old houses, woodcarven windows and stone water taps.
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The way from Bhaktapur to Nagarkot is steep and adventurous yet many tourists enjoy mountrain biking and it may be one of the way you can get to Nagarkot.
By foot. Everything is within walking distance in Nagarkot and there are some lovely hikes around.
Nagarkot is surrounded by thickly forested hills of pine trees which give you an idyllic scene.
It is a rustic resort high on the northern fringe of the Kathmandu valley. It is an outstanding hilltop that offers great views of Himalayas, breathtaking mountain scenery and the most impressive views of sunrise and sunset.
From Nagarkot, one see the breathtaking views of the major Himalayan peaks of Nepal like Manaslu, Ganesh, Langtang, dorje Lakpa, sisa pagma, Choyu, Gauri Shankar, etc. On a clear crystal day, one can even see the tip of Mt. Everest (8848 m) from here. Many tourists go to Nagarkot at afternoon, stay at one of the resorts to view early morning sunrise over the mountains.
For those who wish to spend more than one night in Nagarkot, there are plenty more activities to keep you occupied. For those wishing to stretch their legs and enjoy the fresh mountain breeze, there are several pleasant strolls around the rural countryside of Nagarkot. Here, you can savour the beauty of majestic mountains under comfort and quiet. Or if you wish you can do pony-riding, a visit to Tamang Village, bird-watching, meditation and yoga, hiking or simply stretch out in a terrace with a vodka cocktail and listen to the noise of rattling winds, you will definitely caught up the holiday mood. Nagarkot is surrounded by thickly forested hills of pine trees which gives you an idyllic escape- with only the wind and the sound of rustling leaves to disturb you.