They say that the best things never come easy, and the same can definitely be said about traveling around Nepal!
But, with some of the world’s most incredible scenery and breathtaking mountain vistas on offer, your efforts will always be well rewarded!
The biggest rule about getting around in Nepal is to play it safe, whether you choose to fly, travel by bus, taxi, motorbike, or even hitch-hike.
It’s always worth planning your route before you travel and allowing yourself extra days on either side of flights, treks, or tours.
Roadblocks, breakdowns, and landslides are not uncommon, and these can all result in unexpectedly long journeys.
Flying is the transport of choice for a lot of visitors. It’s certainly the fastest way to travel across Nepal.
When faced with the prospect of a cramped 24-hour bus ride, shelling out USD $100 for an internal flight certainly seems like a small price to pay!
Although, as flights are especially weather-dependent, they can often be cancelled, rearranged, or redirected at the last minute, so it’s always worth bearing this in mind if you are planning a tour or a trek.
The most popular form of transport in Nepal, the humble bus ride can quickly turn into a rollercoaster of epic proportions.
Take your pick of minibus, local bus, or tourist bus, squeeze into a seat or climb up top and settle in for an often sweaty and uncomfortable but incredibly scenic ride.
Prices vary hugely, but for the 210km long journey from Kathmandu to Pokhara (6- 11 hours), you can expect to pay anywhere from USD $5 for a local bus to USD $30 for a luxury tourist bus with AC and WiFi.
A private car is considerably faster than a bus and a lot more comfortable and convenient. If you’re traveling with family or a group of friends, this might be the better option. The drivers are often very friendly too and willing to share a part of their culture with travelers.
It’s also possible to hire cars for multi-day trips around Nepal from USD $60/day including fuel and a driver.
Top tip: If you are trying to get from a smaller village to a main city, you can always try and flag down a private car.
Passengers usually have to pay the return fare even if they are only going one-way so the drivers are often more than willing to pick you up for a heavily-discounted rate!
Nepal’s stunning mountain roads are ideal for experienced motor biking enthusiasts, with rates normally starting at around 500 Rupees a day for a scooter.
Just be sure to check that your insurance covers you for riding motorcycles before you head off into the hills!
Mostly found in bigger cities such as Kathmandu and Pokhara, Nepali taxis can be hired for local or long-distance journeys and are ideal for exploring the Kathmandu Valley.
Although most taxis have meters, drivers are generally reluctant to use them and you will have to negotiate for the lowest rates.
These days, rickshaws are only really found in Kathmandu and the Terai. A pleasant and scenic way to travel through the winding streets, a ride in a rickshaw is often a tourist attraction in itself!
With so much natural beauty and biodiversity, Nepal is an undiscovered eco-tourism hotspot. Our local insider takes you off the beaten track to uncover why Nepal’s so much more than just a trekking paradise.
With a rich tapestry of Buddhist and Hindu heritage, Nepal seems to always be preparing for, or celebrating, a festival. So, make the most of your visit by including one of these major Nepali holidays!