WHY NEPAL SHOULD BE ON TOP OF YOUR BUCKET LIST (If it isn’t already!)
By Eman Zabi
If you don’t already have plans to jet off to the ‘Roof of the World’ any time soon, here are a few reasons why you should take ten days off that job you hate, and head to Nepal instead.
Even if you aren’t quite Everest ready yet, Nepal is home to some of the most stunning trekking circuits in the world: The Nepalese Himalayas, and The Annapurnas. If you’re not quite ready to climb into oxygen-starved death zones, Nepal has several easier treks, so you can feel like you’re on top of the world, without spending 5 years training for it. One of the most iconic treks, is the one up Kala Patthar. Kala Patthar, or ‘Black Rock’ provides one of the most tingling-butterfly-inducing-awe-inspiring views of Mount Everest.
If cozying up in teahouses and sampling local delicacies is more your jam, then YOU HAVE TO TRY MOMOS. Momos, or Nepalese dumplings are a staple and can be filled with mince, vegetables, or churpi, a type of Nepalese cheese. (My favorite are the mince and cheese ones, nothing like steaming hot momos after a hike.)
And if you’re sick of momos (I don’t see how anyone could ever be, but there are strange people out there), Nepalese cuisine has a lot to offer. The food’s generally pretty vegetable heavy making it a fantastic destination for vegetarians and vegans.
- THE SHOPPING
Like most of Asia, shopping in Nepal can be a masterclass in negotiation. I’ve personally learnt more about negotiation watching South Asian women bargain with shopkeepers than I have through countless college courses…but I digress, back to the shopping in Nepal.
Bring your bargain-face, and you can find some incredible things and for a couple of dollars in Kathmandu. Nepalese culture is colorful, so expect to see intricate jewelry, ornate clothing, and vivid artwork. My recommendation is to head to Nepal with an empty suitcase, and fill up on all the beauty the country has to offer. You get gorgeous handmade stuff that you can show off to your friends/the whole of Instagram + you support the local economy. It’s a win-win.
I’d also say don’t overdo the bargaining. $5 dollars may not put a dent in your holiday budget, but it could feed a Nepalese family for a couple of days. Pay a price that would make the purchase feel worth it.
- THE CULTURE
2018 will mark the 250th anniversary of Nepal’s formation. That’s 250 years of rich and diverse culture. Surrounded by giants like India and China, modern Nepalese culture draws from both Indian and Chinese culture, as well as it’s own past, to create something that is uniquely Nepalese.
Nepal boasts of some the most incredible temples in the world, many in tribute to the Goddess Kumari, the only LIVING goddess in the world.
- THE LAKE CITY OF POKHARA
If you need a break from the mountains, head to the stunning Pokhara. As a landlocked nation, Nepal’s primary source of water comes from the 200 or so glacial lakes that pepper its topography. Many of which are found in Pokhara. Surrounded by sounds of lok geet, the traditional folk music of the region, Pokhara allows you to immerse yourself in the beauty of the Nepalese landscape.
In honor of the nations 250th anniversary, Bold Betties has organized a trip to Nepal in March, 2018. Head here for the deets.
Do it for the momos.