December 5, 2014 – December 7, 2014
Our next stop in Nepal after our overnight rafting trip was the traditional old city of Bandipur. Situated along the ridge top of a high hill, the city is centered around a single street which runs the ridge line, with nineteenth century mansions still in use and views of deep valleys along either side.
After rafting, we had the tour company drop us off at the town of Dumre on the way back to Pokhara. From there we caught a taxi for the 20 minute ride up a steep windy hill to the city of Bandipur. Buses also run hourly, for a cheaper option. Bandipur is a sleepy town where traditional life still goes on, only a handful of tourists walk the streets snapping pictures and no touts trying to sell things to tourists were anywhere to be found.
We checked into our hotel which at US$8 per night surprisingly did have hot showers and even working wifi and went out to explore the town. The principal street of the city is a pedestrian only street running the length of the high ridge line. Traditional buildings housing shops, cafes, hotels and restaurants line either side. Small ancient temples and glimpses of views into the valley can be found along the foot path of this former prosperous trading stop on the India – Tibet route.
There are a few hiking trails around town to various different viewpoints around town. There is also a recently discovered cave system nearby which is the largest in Nepal.
Bandipur is a nice place to relax and slow down the pace a bit, since there is not a lot to do here except take in the sleepy town and admire the views. It turned out to be a great place for Krista to recover from a stomach bug which began on the rafting trip, and the town felt refreshingly “untouristy” after Kathmandu and Pokhara. Unless you are looking for a quiet place to relax with your thoughts for an extended period, a couple days is enough to take in Bandipur.