3.5 star rating: Worth doing 5 Reviews

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  • Location:Kathmandu, Nepal
  • Duration:6-7 hours

Kathmandu Day Trip: Budhanilkantha and Hike Through Shivapuri National Park

Gain insight into Nepal’s religions in a fun and active way on this small-group day trip from Kathmandu. Take local transport to Budhanilkantha, the holy site of the sleeping Hindu god Vishnu, and then enjoy a moderate hike with your guide through the woodlands of Shivapuri National Park to Nagi Gompa, a hilltop Buddhist monastery where panoramic views of the Kathmandu valley abound. Finish with a stop at a local bazaar in Sundarijal before heading back to Kathmandu.


  • Day trip from Kathmandu to two interesting religious sites
  • Travel aboard a local bus to Budhanilkantha, the site of the sleeping Hindu god Vishnu
  • Enjoy a moderate hike through Shivapuri National Park with your guide
  • Follow a hidden path to Nagi Gompa, a hilltop Buddhist monastery offering gorgeous views of the Kathmandu valley
  • Visit a local bazaar in Sundarijal
  • Small-group tour limited to 12 people ensures a more personalized experience

What You Can Expect

Kathmandu Day Trip: Budhanilkantha and Hike Through Shivapuri National Park

View of Kathmandu Valley

Rendezvous in Thamel in the morning and walk 15 minutes with your guide and small group to the nearest bus stand, where you’ll jump on board and travel like a local 30 minutes to Budhanilkantha.

This holy site is home to sleeping Vishnu, the Hindu god of preservation. Observe the magnificently carved stone idol of sleeping Vishnu from the outer periphery of the pond (non-Hindus are not allowed inside), on which Vishnu seems to float. Be sure to have your camera ready as your guide tells the interesting story of this venerated religious figure.

You’ll then embark on a moderate 9-mile (15-km) hike into the surrounding farmlands and through Kathmandu’s nearest forest reserve, Shivapuri National Park. After registering at the park entry gate, take a pleasant 2.5-hour walk through the woods to a hidden Buddhist monastery, Nagi Gompa.

Hike uphill 2.5 miles (4 km) to reach this site and pause to enjoy sweeping views of the Kathmandu valley below. This spot is great for bird watching, and on a clear day, you may be able to see the snow-capped Himalayas! You may also purchase snacks here, or feel free to enjoy your own pre-packed lunch.

Once you’ve snapped some unforgettable photos, descend down the hill and continue hiking 1 hour through the woodlands, past waterfalls and out of the forest until you reach Sundarijal, where you’ll visit a local bazaar.

After your hike, hop back on the bus and begin your 1-hour journey back to Kathmandu.

Customer Reviews

5 star rating: Highly Recommended September 2013

Nice and close to the city. Monastery is cool!

4 star rating: Recommended December 2014

Lovely hike, quite steep in parts, started at a Hindu temple with large reclining goddess in a pond, ascended through beautiful mostly unspoilt rainforest to Buddhist monastery at the peak, with monks praying and chanting, and later served us an authentic lunch, then down through more open forest with goats, monkeys etc to a couple more buddhist monasteries; our guide was a genuine Sherpa; an enjoyable day out

3 star rating: Worth doing December 2014

Pleasant hike to somewhat interesting places.

3 star rating: Worth doing October 2013

A nice hike through the Shivapuri national park, to reach the beautiful monastery Nagi Gumba near the peak of Shivapuri hill. A hike down from the other side of the mountain. I went mid-October it was very sunny, remember to get some sunscreen. Guide was definitely an expert knowing the path very well. Prepare for the local transport to and fro it is a bit crammy. All in all worth doing if you haven't got too many days to do a proper trek.

1 star rating: I do not recommend this February 2015

We wouldn't recomme this trip. The hiking was boring due to the pollution and fog with no scenery to see. Please be aware that there is no local transportation provided and we were not interested in getting on buses crowded with locals. We ended up to pay ourselves for the taxi ride.

The tour guide however is very nice and helpful.

From USD $ 83.00

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Tour code: 5076NPUD


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