Nestled high on a ridge between the lowlands on the Ganges plains and the highest mountains on earth is the prosperous and car free village on Bandipur.
If you like to see the village life of Nepal without trekking for days into the mountains, this is the place to do so. Bandipur is ideally located just a few Kilometers off the highway between Kathmandu and Pokhara. It offers fantastic views of the mountains, rice terraced fields and a splendid view of the rolling hills towards the plains in the South. The village is car free and the paved road is lined by cute Cafes and traditional houses. Its a treat to observe the kids on their way to school while sipping a fine coffee in the morning, their laughter and joy filling the air. You can also opt for the quite version and sit on the roof terrace of your lodge and marvel at the mighty Himalayas rising mighty and tall in the North. Marvel at the morning light painting their peaks in a thousand shades of blues, oranges and reds, a sight you are most likely never to forget. A little stroll down from the village takes you to the sports ground from where you have the most an unobstructed view of the Himalaya range from Dhalagiri, Annapurna up to Manaslu. Each of these giant, massive peaks reaching heights above 8000 Meters, while you stand at the humble altitude of 1400 Meters. At your feet there is a drop of 400 Meters that eventually opens up into the Marsyangdi Valley, one of the most fertile areas of Nepal. This is where Nepal truly unfolds its picture postcard beauty.
If you decide to see this place I suggest you spend at least 2 nights to imbibe yourself with its local traditions and natural beauty.
There is a fantastic day program to the quaint and traditional village of Ramkot. The path takes you for about two and a half hour along the ridge with not much elevation to conquer. The village is a happy bunch of farmhouses that offer great insights into the daily life of the local community. A small cafe at the end of the village offers a nice hot meal, a beer and spectacular views of the mountains. The beauty of this excursion is that you have two different paths with different views. Both are in their way breath taking beautiful, on the Northern side you see the Himalaya view and on the southern side there is are splendid views of the plains.
We stayed at the Ghaughar Lodge, located on the main road in the center of the Village. Our room offered the most amazing view of the mountains. The lodge has been built into a traditional house without disturbing the original structure. It is a prime example of an eco friendly and sustainable approach to offer traditions with modern comforts. The food is yummy and the staff very friendly and helpful. The lodge in itself offers an insight into the local culture and traditions.
Note: the area of Bandipur has not been affected by the Earthquake in April 2015
A nice small restaurant has come up in Ramkot