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Authored by Marie Pottiez 

It may be hard to get to Nepal, but you’ll likely find that it’s even harder to leave.

We only stayed 10 days. But in this time we completely fell in love with this wonderful country.

With two days in Kathmandu before hitting the Himalayan trails, ten days is a very short amount of time. But it’s enough to get an idea of the country, discover Kathmandu, see the beauty of the mountains, meet the people, and discover the Nepalese culture.

If you’re working off a similar time-frame, we highly recommend making time for the following.

How to Spend 10 Days in Nepal

How to spent 10 days in Nepal

Make sure you compare different travel insurance quotes for your time in Nepal. 

Katmandhu’s Beautiful Chaos

Barely having arrived from the airport, you’ll dive straight into that chaotic atmosphere specific to Nepal.

Kathmandu is a super intense city. It’s big, polluted, traffic jammed, colorful, authentic, busy, noisy, and all brightened up by stunning old temples, smiling local people and traditional markets.

There is so much to see, you won’t even know where to look. Two eyes and two ears aren’t enough!

Nepalese Treats (Momo Crave!)

We heard a lot of things about Nepalese food before we traveled. “You’ll always eat the same stuff”, “it’s no good”, and so on.

We were glad to see how wrong people were.

There are MANY delicious specialties to taste in Nepal. Starting with a plate of momos accompanied by a local beer. It’s a kind of dumpling filled with cheese, veggies or meat. And it’s delicious – especially after a seven hour hike in the cold!

There are MANY delicious specialties to taste in Nepal.

Luxurious Garden of Dreams

In the middle of busy Kathmandu is a hidden paradise with a well-deserved name: the Garden of Dreams. Leaving the traffic behind you as you push through the tiny door of the garden, you’ll enter into a peaceful little world where time has stopped.

It’s superbly restored, flowery, colorful and quiet. Quiet. Silence is priceless in Kathmandu! It’s the perfect spot for a nap in the shade of a tree.

The restaurant here is far from cheap, but the food is scrumptious. It’s the perfect way to get some strength up before a trek too.

Vertiginous Bodnath Stupa

The Bodnath Stupa is one of the strongest symbols of Nepal. And there is something unreal about being there. You feel as though this place should only exist in books and movies.

But it’s real, and it’s massive. A pure beauty with a strong sense spirituality.

This is one of the holiest Buddhist sites in Kathmandu. Everyday you can see monks and people ritually walking around the stupa, captivated by their prayer while circulating clockwise.

The Bodnath Stupa is one of the strongest symbols of Nepal.

The Vibes in Durbar Square

Durbar Square’s medieval architecture is so spectacular you could easily spend hours there, strolling from temple to temple, taking incredible pictures and meeting the locals.

Red brick walls, art exhibitions on the streets, thousands of pigeons, many tuk tuks, colorful saris – this is Kathmandu exactly as you’ve pictured it.

Take your camera and let yourself get lost, to simply soak up the atmosphere.

The Vibes in Durbar Square

Himalayan Peaks

It’s crazy how simple it became to plan a trek in the Himalayas; there are now countless options, from one day to one month expeditions, with or without guide.

Obviously, the more time you’ve got, the more remotely you’ll go. We chose the Langtang Valley for many reasons’ it’s one of the closest trekking options from Kathmandu, it’s not too popular therefore not too crowded, and it’s neither too hard nor easy.

It was breathtaking. A truly unique experience. Trekking in the Himalayas is something everyone should live at least once in their lifetime.

PRODUCTS YOU MIGHT FIND USEFUL IN NEPAL: CLICK PHOTO↓

 

Powerfly Solar Powered Backpack

LifeStraw Personal Water Filter

CamelBak Chute 1L Water Bottle

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This guest post is contributed by Marie Pottiez, serial expat on the road for the past 5 years and founder of the blog Miles of Happiness.

Originally from France, she lived in Belgium, New Zealand and Indonesia, before settling down in Hong Kong in 2014. She spends as much time as possible traveling throughout the planet, exploring the world one place at a time.

You can follow her adventures on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Vimeo, or get inspired by her Pinterest.

Image credits: Photos from Nepal by Marie Pottiez. Bio photo of Marie Pottiez © Ju Redondo Photography.

    32 Comments

  1. I visited the buddha’s stoop, its such a peaceful place.

    • Glad you enjoyed your time in Nepal 🙂

  2. Marie, I loved your drawings. This is so beautiful and so unique! I think going to Nepal must be such a unique experience. Glad you had the possibility to go there.

    • Aren’t her illustrations wonderful! Hope you have the chance to visit Nepal in the future 🙂

  3. All of my favourite things about Kathmandu are summarised in this post! When we lived there, our apartment was just down the lane from the Garden of Dreams – hidden paradise describes it perfectly 🙂
    But what I really love about this post is the illustrations – Marie, you are very talented! I love them…

    • Oh wow Kirsty, what an opportunity to immerse yourself in Kathmandu – how long did you live there for? Cool that Garden of Dreams was one of your favorite spots too!

      And yes, aren’t Marie’s illustrations incredible! She has a gift!

  4. What a lovely post…I loved the inviting sketches and the short and to the point description. Guess what I am heading to Nepal in a week so this post has come just in time 🙂

    I am really forward to exploring the Durbar square…

    • Glad you enjoyed it Siddhartha! Aren’t Marie’s sketches wonderful! She’s exceptionally talented 🙂

      Have an amazing time in Nepal – let us know what you think!

  5. Would love to visit Nepal and learn more about the culture and, as always, the cuisine. I’ve tried a few Nepalese dishes here, including those delicious momos and some curries that are not entirely disimilar to those of India, but not exactly the same either. Really enjoyed.
    I would particularly like to see Kathmandu, but hesitate to book as I would not go trekking so need to think of best way to visit.
    The Garden of Dreams sounds beautiful, I had not come across that, though I’d seen photos of the Bodnath Stupa of course. I love visitnig temples of different cultures and religions so Durbar Square looks a must.

    • There’s definitely a lot of culture if you’re interested in Nepal – I haven’t personally been yet, but I can see how the cuisine scene would be similar to India. Especially as located in similar geography / regions.

      I’ve been told that Kathmandu has a pretty good museum scene, so there would definitely be enough to keep you busy if you weren’t keen on trekking. Or perhaps you could do short half day hikes which aren’t too strenuous but still see some of the beautiful countryside 🙂

  6. Love the graphics in this post! I loved my time in Nepal and would go back in a heartbeat. It’s such a culturally rich country with heaps of things to do!! Marie is super talented and love all her illustrations.

    • She’s an incredibly talented artist isn’t she! Gives an article a fun perspective as opposed to your everyday photos – nice to really see Nepal through Marie’s eyes!

  7. For some reason, I always imagined Kathmandu to be a quiet city. I am obviously very wrong but the Garden of Dreams does sound like a peaceful spot to escape to.
    The architecture and atmosphere of Durbar Square sound amazing.

    • Ah haha you would have been a little surprised – Kathmandu is intense and incredibly action packed!! The Garden of Dreams though would be a nice place to escape for a quiet retreat if the city got a bit too hectic for you.

      Hope you enjoy your time!

  8. The Buddhist culture is quite compelling isn’t it? I haven’t been to Nepal but I know that ‘I want to stay feeling’ from other Buddhist countries. Now, I want to make my way to Kathmandu right now. I already love Momos – so there’s a good start!

    • Absolutely – if you’ve enjoyed other Buddhist countries I think you would really enjoy Nepal. There’s a very rich Buddhist culture, and it definitely draws you in.

      Hope you have the chance to visit soon!

  9. I have been wanting to visit nepal to hike the base camp, but upon reading this id love to explore the other areas to and experience first hand their culture. I love sketches too its lovely personal touch to the article.

    • Base camp is a definite draw! But yes, spending time throughout the rest of Nepal is a great way to immerse yourself for more cultural insight. So many great places to choose from too – it’s such an incredible country with so much to do!

      Glad you enjoyed Marie’s sketches – she’s an incredible artist 🙂

  10. The sketches instead of photos have made this post so unique. Nepal is a peace-loving and beautiful country. I would love to visit this country and explore the Durbar square, the Stupa, and the base camp.

    • Glad you enjoyed it Panchami! Marie is an incredible artist, I love her illustrations (you can find more on her blog).

      Hope you have the chance to visit Nepal soon!

  11. There are so many places to sightsee in Nepal that 10 days are going to be insufficient. The calmness of the place and how people talk and behave with you is out of this world. Over my 5 years of travelling career, I have been to Nepal twice – one by bike and one by hitchhiking and both trips were so memorable I still remember my itinerary like the back of my hand. Nepal gave me peace from all the issues that I was having. It’s truly great.

    • Yes absolutely, 10 days for such an incredible country is a very short amount of time. So glad you’ve enjoyed both your trips to Nepal – biking and hitchhiking sound like they would have made for quite the adventures!

      Hope you have the chance to travel again for a third visit. Definitely a great spot to travel for those seeking peace 🙂

  12. I have always wanted to visit Nepal- and hike in the Himalayas. I agree that it is crazy that it is now something anyone can do easily… that almost disappoints me but then again I’m sure I’ll appreciate it when I finally make it there. Looks like a very cool trip!

    • I understand what you mean about being disappointed by it’s accessibility – we want to feel as though our adventures are unique right! Though in that sense, it’s still a relatively undiscovered spot in terms of the rest of the world for tourism – and for those who do travel to Nepal, many people hit base camp / Everest and don’t dig deeper into the rest of the country.

      So I think there are definitely unique adventures still waiting for you in Nepal!

  13. First of all, I love Maria’s illustrations! They’re incredible! I’m heading to Nepal myself in April – loving this ’round the world trip we’re on – and there are some great tips here for that! I definitely want to visit the Garden of Dreams. I’ve heard there’s quite a bit of hustle and bustle in Kathmandu, so this would be a great escape. I’m also glad to hear that planning a trek in the Himalayas is relatively easy. It’s the main reason that we’re going!

    • Aren’t they incredible! You’ll have such a wonderful trip in April, Paige – definitely keep the Garden of Dreams in mind if the pace of Kathmandu gets too hectic at any stage. It’s a nice little escape!

      Enjoy the Himalayas!

  14. Nice list! Nepal has been in our must-visit-before-we-die list. Our dream is to at least trek the Lower Himalayas which is said to have stunning landscapes. The destinations you mentioned above will be included as our side trips. 🙂

    • Glad you enjoyed the article – feel free to touch base with Marie if you have any questions in the lead up to planning your trip! You’ll love the Himalayas, some of the most stunning landscapes on earth 🙂

  15. Namaste from Nepal, Megan and Mike!
    I really enjoyed your speculations about your trip and just in 10 days, you guys did a lot! Really appreciated your artwork as well, you guys really put the Nepalese essence there. Please visit again because once is never again! All the love! xoxo

    • Namaste Ushmana! Glad you enjoyed Marie’s article and her illustrations – we haven’t personally been yet, but it was a fabulous opportunity to travel through her eyes!

      Hopefully we will visit soon 🙂

  16. Breathtaking scenery, diverse traditions and the friendliest people comprise the rich tapestry of Nepal. Tiny mountain kingdom is a land of contrasts: eight of the world’s ten highest peaks, tropical jungles at sea level and the world’s deepest river valley, rushing rivers and peaceful valleys, Gurkha soldiers and Buddhist lamas, golden pagodas and simple shrines. Nepal is a fascinating place to explore.

    • Absolutely! Such a beautifully written description, it sounds like Nepal left quite the impression on you too!

      So glad you enjoyed the country, maybe we’ll bump into you when Mike and I make it there one of these years 🙂

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