|LIFE IN THE MOUNTAIN VILLAGES OF NEPAL|
DAY 3 - We woke up early to catch the sunrise again. The skies were clearer so we could see the Himalayan ranges more clearly. Then after breakfast, we headed out for a village hike through the Himalayan valley. We walked through terraced fields of potato and corn, stopped for tea at our guide's home and shared Japanese mandarins with his family (complete with cow, goats and chicken).
We walked all over the valley for a total of 4 hours before heading back and stopping for tea and a quick lunch on the way to the hotel. After getting back to the hotel and figuring out our way back to Kathmandu, we decided to take advantage of the nice sunny weather to venture out for another walk. We stopped at the Unkai resort and enjoyed the view and some coffee on their terrace before heading back to the hotel to check out.
On the way back to Kathmandu, we decided to stop by the viewpoint tower to see if we could spot Mt. Everest. Apparently, it's an easy 1h30 trek on foot on a paved road. However, as we went by car (10minutes max), I was glad we went by car: you're walking along the road, not on a path and the views didn't seem to be that breathtaking... Unfortunately, once we got there (and there's a 2-minute flight of stairs to the actual tower), the mountains were once again hiding among the clouds. Funnily enough, the tower itself was off limits too and people just stood around the foot of it trying to see the mountains and ending up taking pictures of the tower instead.
The drive back to Kathmandu was substantially more painful than the one to Nagarkot. We went from narrow, winding mountain roads like never seen before (and I grew up in the Alps) to bumpy, unpaved paths through fields and villages to the full onslaught of traffic on the paved highway to Kathmandu.
When we finally got back to the Shanker, we were upgraded to a suite room. When we saw it, we decided then and there that we would eat in the room, shower and just relax in the warmth of the suite. Before that, we quickly ran to the nearby supermarket to see if we could find some food for dinner, but decided to get room service. The hot shower was beyond heavenly.
Village hike: 4h $20
Nagarkot-Kathmandu : 2h30 $22
Viewpoint tower: abt 20 minutes (drive + visit) $10