Bandipur; an exquisite experience

Market place, old historic town of Bandipur, Nepal

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Bandipur, a peacefully beautiful scenic village based on the Newari style architects, is a must-visit place. Unlike most attractions, here your personal space won’t be invaded by street sellers nor by any tour guide, now that’s already a plus point. The village is full of 18th-century buildings, preserved rather well to this date. Moreover, the eateries and lodges are also not modernised, it’s a rather rewarding experience to spend a day or two at such a place.

Nepali flag hoisted on the house in bandipur
Nepali flag hoisted facing traditional newari house with dark windows and shutters and showing attached armor in Bandipur-Tanahu District-Gandaki Zone-Nepal.

Bandipur lies approximately 76km west of Pokhara and is easily accessible compared to most of the attractions that offer a similar experience. One could reroute his Pokhara-Kathmandu trip and spend some quality time since it falls on the Prithivi Highway. The village is to be accessed via a lengthy hill ride which will likely not feel like a long ride as the beautiful view along the way will have all your attention.

As you reach the main entrance you will notice quite a few modern buildings most of which are lodges and hotels but don’t worry, modernisation has not affected the village too much extent. Those are the only modern architects you will see. Most tourists visit Bandipur to see the beautiful sunrise along with the above-the-cloud experience. The best time to experience this is from October to February when the air is a bit chilly. Since most people visit the village to see the sunrise, almost everyone stays a night there, if not more. In view of the fact that the village is fairly small, they do not hold the capacity to reside a huge number of tourists, so be prepared and book your room beforehand.

Gurungche hill/dada is the highest hill surrounding Bandipur. It is the best location to watch sunrise/sunset views whilst you are in Bandipur. One who climbs the nearby Gurungche hill early in the morning will be greeted with a one-of-a-kind experience as the mist below makes it feel like one is above the clouds and the graceful sunrise hits your face like nothing else.

Gurunche hill, Bandipur Nepal
Gurunche hill, Bandipur Nepal . Source: Google Maps

After a night spent, the first thing you would want to do is experience the aesthetic sunrise from the hilltop. Believe us when we say this, you will surely take a ton of photographs there. As the day ripens, it’s time to appreciate the centuries-old architectures which are intricate yet beautifully built. You will not fail to notice how quiet the streets of the main bazaar is, thanks to their “no vehicle inside the village” policy. On a fine sunny day, one can see the beautiful Himalayas shining in full glory. It feels like walking back in time as you soak in the aesthetic of the surrounding buildings made from red clay. The streets are filled with eye-catching traditional homemade souvenirs in addition to other street attractions. As for the lunch, you can have an authentic Newari lunch at one of the many traditional home eateries across the village. Then after, maybe you would want to rest a bit before climbing the Gurungche once again, this time to see the sunset. Furthermore, the silk factory in the village is also an interesting place to visit. It’s amazing to see how a small worm produces silk and how the silk is later treated to make the final product.

If you’re looking for an adrenaline-filled adventure, Bandipur is probably not the place for it but if you love a quiet and peaceful experience, you should definitely visit Bandipur at least once. The locals respect your private space and don’t urge you to buy their stuff plus there are very few documented cases of theft.

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