Most who arrive in Kathmandu hit the trekking circuits after a day or two in the city. But Nepal offers much more, such as active Kathmandu road trips. So in this article we explore the best Nepal adventure tours from Kathmandu, so you can do more while you explore the Himalayas.
Yes the best treks in Nepal are some of the best on the planet. But not everyone can hike at altitude many days in a row. So to see as much of this mountain kingdom as possible, but still be immersed in the magnificent Himalayas, take a road trip from Kathmandu.
The distance and duration of the active Kathmandu road trips below are all based on google maps drive times. They are all direct routes with no detours or stops. You could take a few days on some of these tours and of course do them in either direction, or combine more than one.
If you’d rather not drive, Kathmandu is the main transport hub and capital city. So you can get buses from there. Or you could book on a tour with companies such as TransIndus, who offer packages if you’d rather not travel independently.
The best Nepal adventure tours begin or end in Kathmandu. So allow a few days to explore the important sights of the city. You’ll also get a feel for the culture and people of Nepal.
182 km. 5 hours 30 driving time
As a contrast to the hustle and bustle of Kathmandu, Chitwan National Park is perfect. Explore the park by kayak/canoe, on foot or even on an elephant safari for a truly unique experience. You can see rhino and other wildlife on a Chitwan multi activity holiday.
283 km. 9 hours 30 driving time
As the birthplace of Buddha, there are few spots more important to Nepali culture than Lumbini. This is more of a cultural adventure, with many of the ancient religious monuments, monasteries and gardens, of Lumbini having UNESCO world heritage status.
Many people arrive overland from India as it’s only a short drive from the border. However, driving from Kathmandu passes through beautiful scenery and many other important cultural sites.
110 km. 4 hours 10 driving time
If you’re a thrill seeker looking for an unforgettable experience, this is the tour for you. The drive to Kodari takes in yet more of Nepal’s stunning landscape and with plenty of stops for photos takes most of a day.
Not far from Kodari is The Last Resort, with a world famous bungee jump. The jump is 160m high, and gives great views of the nearby scenery. You can also do a canyon swing, go canyoning and white water rafting all at The Last Resort!
201 km. 7 hours driving time
As one of the most beautiful cities in the country, Pokhara is a must see on any trip. It’s a favourite starting point for many popular treks, but there are plenty of short hikes you can do for an easier Nepal adventure.
If you’re feeling adventurous, you can white water raft down the river for part of your journey to Pokhara. And once there is is a great spot for paragliding, plus you can even do an Everest skydive!
31 km. 1 hours 10 driving time
A short but impressive drive from Kathmandu brings you to Dhulikhel, a small town with incredible views of the nearby Himalayas. Take a day or two to soak up the unique culture, strongly influenced by neighbouring Tibet, before heading off on your next adventure.
The best Nepal adventure tours from Kathmandu can often be combined or extended to create the perfectly tailored Himalayan holiday. So now’s the time to crack out a map, book some flights and get planning.
We hope you found these top 5 active Kathmandu road trips inspirational. For more ideas check out our Nepal adventure travel page.