Nepal is a country of highly diverse and rich geography, culture, and religions. The mountainous north has eight of the world's ten highest mountains, including the highest, Sagarmatha, known in English as Mount Everest. The fertile and humid south is heavily urbanized. It contains over 240 peaks more than 20,000 ft (6,096 meters) above sea level.
Nepal has several ancient pilgrimage sites. Each temple is attached to a legend or belief that glorifies the miraculous powers of its deity. Kathmandu Valley is home to the famous Pashupatinath Temple, Swayambhu Stupa and several other famous temples. Hundreds of famous temples are located in and around the Kathmandu Valley. Some well-known pilgramage sites are: Barah Chhetra, Halesi Mahadev, Janakpur, Pathibhara, Tengboche in East Nepal; Manakaman, Gorkha, Lumbini, Muktinath, Gosainkunda, Tansen, Kathmandu Valley in Central Nepal; and Swargadwari, Khaptad Ashram in West Nepal.
Nepal is also the Gateway to Kailash Mansarovar, the mythical abode of Lord Shiva. Devotees from various parts of Nepal and India throng the temples during special festivals. Even though weak infrastructure renders some places hard to reach, efforts are being made on national level to develop and promote some popular sites.
Pilgrimage sites of Nepal like Muktinath and Gosainkunda make popular trekking destinations. Tours to these sites are encouraged for the novelty they provide in terms of nature and culture.
For over forty years, Nepal has been an extremely fascinating destination for travelers, scholars, and researchers. For those interested in culture, the Kathmandu valley is endowed with seven World Heritage sites. This valley was divided into three kingdoms less than a century ago. It now contains countless architectural monuments, and vestiges of varied cultural and religious traditions.
In other chapters we explain about the adventure Nepal provides, here we detail some of the more popular gentle sides of a holiday in our Kingdom including the Kathmandu Valley itself and other major settlements of interest in Nepal.
Paragliding is a relatively new adventure sport in Nepal, and little information is available in tourist guidebooks. Paragliding in this Himalayan country can be a truly wonderful and fulfilling experience for the adventure-seekers. You can experience unparalleled scenic grandeur as you share airspace with Himalayan griffin vultures, eagles, kites, while floating over villages, monasteries, temples, lakes and jungles, with a fantastic view of the majestic Himalayas.
The last three years have seen the activity flourish in Pokhara , and it now is an internationally recognized destination for free-flight enthusiasts.
Sikkim / Darjeeling / Kurseong / Kalimpong / Mirik