15 Things to do in Pokhara
1. Visit Phewa Lake
Located centrally in Lakeside, Phewa Lake is the heart of Pokhara. It is a freshwater lake in Pokhara valley. The lake is famous for its reflection of Machapuchhre (Fishtail) Mountain and other mountain ranges surrounding the valley in its crystal clear water. Phewa Lake is the largest lake in Pokhara valley and the second largest lake in Nepal. It is surrounded by Sarangkot and Kaskikot hill.
One of the major attractions is the boat ride, where you can take a canoe-shaped boat or paddle boat in the lake and enjoy the peace. For adventure seekers, you can even try Standup Paddle on the lake. Another attraction around Phewa Lake is the Barahi temple, which is located in the middle of the lake and can be accessed by boat only. The lake is also famous for its varieties of fishes which are served in the surrounding hotels and restaurants.
2. Explore eateries and the different option of hotels for your accommodation
Pokhara is popular among tourist, where people from different corners of the globe visit here to relax and enjoy the scenic beauty of the luscious mountains. One of the major attractions in the Lakeside Pokhara is the variety of food that it offers. Pokhara is a hub for the multi-cuisine culture where you can find anything from world class pizza to authentic Nepali Thali (Food). Pokhara is a center for multi-culture where the foods are what make the visit to Pokhara worthwhile. There are cozy coffee shops where you can read a book or do your work while sipping coffee or cocktail (it’s a vacation!). There are authentic restaurants that serve Chinese, Indian or Nepali food as per your palate preference. There are many world-class bars along the lakeside where you can enjoy the view of the lake and the mountains (for day drinking). On top, the street of Lakeside has a smorgasbord of cafes and restaurants offering delicacies.
Hotels in Pokhara can be a budget lodge or 5-star hotels with 24 hours service. If you are a budget traveler, you can stay at lodges or hotels. Plus There are also some hostels to accommodate you as per your budget. For the luxury travelers, there are hotels and resorts to suit your need with swimming pools, bars, room service with perfect ambiance.
3. Mesmerizing Sunrise from Sarankot
Sarangkot (1500m) is one of the high hills of the Pokhara valley. It is well known for activities like zip-lining and paragliding. But it is also a viewpoint for sunrise and sunset being the tallest hill. You can get up early in the morning and hike to Sarangkot for lovely sunrise or hike in the afternoon to view the luscious sunset. There are many trails along Sarangkot with charming villages, terraced farming, and viewpoints. A short day hike can be done till Naudanda which is about 3 hours from Sarangkot. For a whole day hike, you can walk to Australian camp at 2,060 m. Another trail for hiking from Sarangkot is Dhampus which lies in the lap of Annapurna base camp.
4. Enlighten yourself at World peace pagoda
Located at height of 1100 meters of Ananda hill in Pokhara, Shanti (peace) provides the panoramic view of Pokhara. The hilltop is a famous tourist destination and is ranked 2nd famous place in Pokhara by TripAdvisor. The stupa was built as a symbol of peace.
The peace pagoda can be reached through various ways. There are hiking trails, cycling routes and even motorway. You can take a boat along Phewa Lake and cross the water body. After that, you take one hour hike through small villages. It takes about 25 minutes to reach the top via private vehicle. The hilltop offers a breathtaking view of mountains, Phewa Lake and Lakeside Pokhara.
5. Visit Tibetan settlement
Many Tibetans came to Nepal after the invasion of Tibet by China. There are 4 Tibetan settlements around Pokhara. The Tibetan settlement is the epitome of Tibetan culture and visit to these settlements help to understand their culture and beliefs.
There are two major Tibetan refugee settlements in Pokhara. One is on the Southern side called Tashiling Refugee camp. Another one is the northern & the western side of Pokhara called Tashi Palkhiel refugee camp. These camps provide an understanding of their stories. You can buy handmade trinkets and souvenirs around these places.
6. Spend your day in the street of Lakeside Pokhara
Lakeside in Pokhara is the heart of the city. Located centrally in the Pokhara valley, it is the most famous tourist destination in Pokhara with nightlife to 5-star services. Lakeside is strategically located adjacent to Phewa lake and offers numerous activities and relaxation services. There are lines of cheap accommodations to luxury hotel services. Also, you can find varieties of cuisines from Chinese to Italian to Nepali food at an affordable price. If you want to do any outdoor activities, you can find different services as per your need. For relaxation, there are numbers of spas and massage parlors. Likewise, there are many souvenir shops to collect memories of Nepal and to take gifts to your loved ones at homes.
Around Lakeside, you can also take scooter or bike on hire for hours or day and ride around Pokhara and visit different heritages. The vehicles are available easily in the Lakeside area.
7. Fly high with the Ultralight flight
The shortest ultra flight takes you over the city of Pokhara, Fewa Lake, near Sarangkot hill, over the Buddha monastery and the south side of the city. This flight gives you just a taste of freedom, leaving you wanting more! The speed of this flight ranges from 50 km/hr to 90 km/hr and gives you a panoramic view of the whole Annapurna Range with views of another 8,000-meter peak – Dhaulagiri, in the distance. The maximum altitude attained is 5,000 feet.
8. Go for Bungee jumping
Nepal’s first and only Tower Bungee, HighGround Bungee & Swing has something for everyone. Located at a convenient 20 minutes from Pokhara Lakeside, the jump site offers a spellbinding view of the Himalayas, the hills and the rivers that will take your breath away with 70-meter vertical fall.
9. Try Ziplining
Considered to be one of the extreme zip flyers, it is the only zip lining in Nepal. It covers a total distance of 1.80 km (1.12mi) with the vertical height of 610 m (2000ft) and speed of 120 km/hr (75mph). It is one of the steepest and fastest zip lines. The zip lining is done from Sarangkot which is located at 45 minutes’ drive from Pokhara. The zip lining is done with the backdrop of the mountains.
10. Why not Paragliding
One of the most famous tourist attraction in Pokhara is paragliding. It is one of the must-do experience in Pokhara. Paragliding has become a sort of mandatory adrenaline activity in Pokhara. There are numbers of operators offering paragliding in Pokhara. There are many offers like training, tandem flight, yearly membership, solo flights etc.
11. Don’t miss to visit Devi’s fall
The water of Devi’s fall forms an underground tunnel after reaching the bottom. This tunnel is approximately 500 feet (150 m) long and runs 100 feet below ground level. After that, the water passes through a cave called Gupteshwor Mahadev.
It is a very popular tourist site. The Phewa Lake is the water source.
The legend has it that a trekker named Devi was swept by high tide and fell down the waterfall after whom it was named.
The best time to visit is during the monsoon season when there is a high rainfall. During this period, the water runs and plunges over rocks and through gorges, giving visitors a breathtaking view. People try their luck by throwing coins into the water as well.
12. Visit Batcave
As the name suggests, it is the cave with bats as a major attraction. It is a habitat for bats over the walls and ceilings. It is nearby Mahendra cave. In Nepali, it is called Chamero Gufa. The cave is made up of the limestone. Since the cave is dark, as you enter, you are provided with emergency light and a guide for assistance and information.
13. Yoga and Pilates
Pokhara has become a hub for yoga enthusiasts and nature lovers. Pokhara has become a perfect blend of nature with fitness and healthy lifestyle. There are many yoga centers in Pokhara located in secluded areas and offer varieties of yoga programs in different seasons. The programs can be customized as per your need. The yoga sessions are mindful and invigorating. There are residential yoga retreats as well offering week-long yoga sessions and healthy eating.
14. Hiking/ outdoor adventure
In Pokhara, one of the most touristic activities is an outdoor adventure. There are some extreme hardcore adventures like bungee, parasailing but there are some other relaxing outdoor activities like hiking, cycling which are the perfect way to get in touch with nature.
15. Take a ride to Pame (Popular for local fish)
You can hire a cycle for half day and take a ride to Pame, which is on the other side of the Lakeside and provides an uninterrupted view of the lake. The road is bit rugged but offers nature view at its best. There are many restaurants around this area as well. Pame is famous for its fish. The restaurants in Pame will serve you variety of fishes as per your preference. Perfect place to spend your day relaxing with a local beer.