Nepal is country with innumerable types of terrain and the best way to explore the on a motorcycle Nepal is where the mighty Himalayas meet the lush green tropical region of the Terai plains. For the past few years, Nepal has become a popular destination for motorcyclist around the world as it offers views of the magnificent Himalayas, colorful and vibrant cultures, ancient temples and monasteries and more.
The Kathmandu to Muktinath ride is one of the ultimate rides that passes through the the Himalayas with views of implausible gorges, high passes and enormous vistas passing through authentic Tibetan villages, barren ridges, eroded cliffs and Moraine valleys. Its landscape is unrivaled for it has a stupendous wilderness, pristine scenery, snow capped peaks, spectacular monasteries and caves. This ride provides an insight into the Nepali culture the beautiful landscape of mountain, rivers and jungles. The city of Kathmandu valley show cases the rich cultural heritage of temples, stupas and monasteries and beyond the valley the scenery comes to life. The landscape of mountains, rivers and jungles ranges from 800 meters altitude of the terai belt of the Chitwan National Park to the high altitude desert plateau of Lower Mustang (3800 m) riding through the Kali Gandaki gorge, the deepest gorge in the world. The Marpha, Jomsom and Muktinath areas provides insight into ancient cultures and religion and the Chitwan National Park is one of Asia’s finest wildlife nature reserves providing visitors with an opportunity to ride elephants in search of the Royal Bengal Tiger, the one horned rhinoceros and other mammals, reptiles and birds.
ANNAPURNA REGION: The Annapurna Region in central Nepal is the most geographically and culturally diverse Region for trekking. The Annapurna Conservation Area Project (ACAP) working along with the King Mahendra Trust for Nature Conservation, have declared this region as the area of conservation and sustainable development. Stretched over 26,000 sq. km, the area boasts of a variety of diverse cultures, tribes and castes as the Brahmins, Chettris, Newars, Gurungs, Magars and Tibetans. This area has sub- tropical lowlands, valleys, bamboo, rhododendron and oak forests, alpine meadows, windswept desert plateaus and the towering Annapurna Mountains. This area has the world’s deepest river gorge, Kali Gandaki, lying some 6900 metres / 22,563 ft., below some of the world’s largest and most beautiful mountains as the Annapurna I (world’s 8th highest) and Fishtail (one of the most beautiful). Animals and birds are in abundance in this region, 440 species of birds and animals like the marten, deer, langur and the elusive snow leopard live in this area.
Day 1: Ride from Kathmandu to Pokhara [Distance 210 km]
- Meet and transfer to the workshop for an introduction to the Motorcycles and Road Captain and briefing about the traffic rules and regulation of Nepal and about the ride.
- Set out of the Kathmandu to the Prithivi Highway. Firstly we negotiate the traffic out of Kathmandu and ride out of the Valley to the check post of Thankot located on the crest of a ridge and descend to Naubise, 17 kilometers of winding mountain road. From here, the highway is much more defined and makes a smoother ride. The ride from here is scenic as we follow the banks of the Trishuli river, a river very popular for rafting adventures and we arrive at Kurintar, 97 kilometers from Kathmandu in about another 1 ½ 2hours where there is a nice restaurant “Riverside Springs Resort”. After a short break, ride to Muglin (110 kms from Kathmandu), the junction where the highway bifurcates, South to Chitwan and West to Pokhara. Head west for 90 kms to Pokhara by firstly crossing the suspension bridge and following the Marshyangdi river for a while. Pass through typical Nepali landscape of scattered villages with ochre coloured thatched houses, rice fields, winding roads and groups of small settlements.
Our arrival in Pokhara area is greeted with fantastic views of the western Himalayas, the Annapurna range and the famous Fish Tail Mountain. Pokhara stands at 884 m above sea level, about 700 m lower than Kathmandu Valley. In Kathmandu Valley the high temples are all around you, in Pokhara it is the mountains. Only foothills separate Pokhara form the full height of the Himalayas, and the magnificent 8000 m. peaks of the Annapurna range. Overnight at the Hotel
Day 2: Ride from Pokhara to Tatopani [Distance 105 km]
After early breakfast, set out for Beni Bazaar, 78 Kms on the Baglung Highway this takes about 3 hours and a convenient place to stop for lunch. From here we set out on the newly constructed road to Jomsom. The new road is a rough affair as the terrain has to be maintained regularly due to landslides and land slips due to the monsoon season. However it is more than compensated by the charm of the region and the scenic natural beauty. Crossing small streams and negotiating gravel paths, arrive at Tatopani (26 Kms) which means “Hot Water”, and is one of the most popular overnight stops in this area. The name Tatopani is Nepali translation for Hot Springs, and is located close by. Overnight at the Tatopani
Day 3: Ride from Tatopani to Jomsom (2713 m) [Distance 40 km]
After an early breakfast, set out on the trail by following the Kali Gandaki River passing waterfalls and Thakali and Magar Villages to Dana (4750 ft./ 1446 m.). Steeply ascend to Ghasa (6600 ft./ 2012m) along the Kali Gandaki gorge, the deepest gorge in the world. As we pass between the Dhaulagiri and the Annapurna mountain range, a dramatic change in vegetation is witnessed from green forests, to dry arid desert. It takes gradual acclimatizing with the surrounding. The Thakali’s are the dominant tribe of the valley, related to the Gurung and Magars of the southern slopes. From here we head to Jomsom passing through the villages of Kalopani and Marpha. Upon arrival check into the Guest House.
Jomsom (2713 m) is the Administrative center of the Mustang region and the gateway to the Annapurna region. A land of mystique, the rugged peaks of the Annapurna, Nilgiri and Dhaulagari gaze down in their awesome splendor at weathered landscapes that contrast with the deep river ravines over noisy riverbeds. Jomsom is a mixture of hard work, social frivolity tempered by culture founded on deep religious traditions. It has the only airport that operates daily scheduled flights to Pokhara in the early mornings before the winds build up. Overnight at the Guest House
Day 4: Ride to Muktinath and then descend to Kalopani via Kagbeni.
After breakfast we set out for Muktinath, one of the many pilgrimage places in the Kali Gandaki basin. Set out of Jomsom Bazaar, cross the wooden bridge and then ride to the river bed. The going is slow here because of the uneven graveled road but after a while we ascend on a dirt track ascending all the way to the settlement of Muktinath by way of Jharkot. If lucky, one can find ammonite fossils millions of years old but one can also buy them directly from the traders. The arid desert landscape, rolling hills and the mountain views offers abstract beauty gives a feeling of being on top of the world. Muktinath at 3800 m, its eternal flame draws the Hindus and Buddhist alike and is therefore interesting to note the mixture of Buddhist and Hindu culture in this area. There are many interests to occupy the day in this ancient town, which also used to be the capital of one of the province of Mustang. It draws thousands of pilgrims annually. After the visit, ride down to Kagbeni (2800 m) which is the gateway to Upper Mustang. (Note: The Kaligandaki Valley becomes increasingly windy during the day as the winds blows south to north and makes it difficult for travelers. So it is a good idea to start early and reach Kagbeni for lunch.
Kagbeni means “Bolt at the two rivers”. At an altitude of 2840 meters it is a famous village of Baarah Gaun ( twelve villages) region in Mustang district. It is a fascinating medieval village with closely packed mud brick houses, dark alleys. The village stands in a little green oasis dominated by its red monastery. This village also boasts of a Monastery and the monks are of the yellow hat or the Gelup Sect. The Kali Gandaki was one of the major trading routes between Tibet and India. The traders brought the famous salt from Tibet and barley, spices and clothes from India. After the Chinese invasion in Tibet, the trade came to an halt but is slowly improving. After lunch it is an 45 minute ride to Jomsom but we continue further 25 kilometers, about 1 ½ hour slow ride to Kalopani and check into the Lodge. Overnight at local lodge.
Day 5: Ride from Kalopani to Pokhara [Distance 124 km]
It is a pleasant relief to be able to tackle the roughest section of the journey in the early morning. Descend to Tatopani (21 kilometers) and then continue riding back to the settlement of Jaleswor located close to the river and then continue on to Beni. After a quick stop for a quick, set out following the trail along the river and the after about an hour meet the main highway at Maldhunga and then continue to Pokhara which is reached in about 2 ½ hours. Overnight stay at the Hotel
Day 6: Ride Pokhara to Kathmandu & Departure
After breakfast, ride 200 kms to Kathmandu with enroute stop for lunch at a local restaurant. Upon arriving at the ring road of the Kathmandu city, ride straight to the Workshop.
- Hire of 350 CC Royal Enefield Electra Motorcycles.
- Services of an experienced Road Captain on Motorcycle and back up support of a trained Mechanic, including the cost for their meals, accommodations and daily allowance.
- Annapurna Conservation Area Permit (ACAP) Fee
- Trekker’s Information Management System (TIMS) Card Fee
- Comprehensive medical kit.
Cost does not include:
- All Meals
- Personal insurance and evacuation charges
- All expenses of personal nature such as drinks, laundry etc.
- Insurance against or for accidents / loss of life, loss of goods etc.
- Third party insurance
- Tips to guides, drivers
- Any item not included in the above “cost Includes”
- Costs incurred due to natural calamities, strikes, and break downs & anything beyond nature