When we think of going on an adventure in Nepal, we often think about summiting Mount Everest or embarking on a 14 day trek to the Everest base camp (EBC). But do you know? Other than the magnificent Himalayan mountains, there is a range of Nepal adventures to embark on.
Nepal Adventures and Outdoor Activities
From white water rafting to bungee jumping to paragliding with the Himalayas in the background. We were pumping with non-stop adrenaline in this part of our trip! With courtesy from Himalayan Travel Mart (HTM2019) and Highground Adventures, we got to try a few of these great activities for ourselves!
World Class White Water Rafting Pokhara
White water rafting in Pokhara is one of the most sought after activity. We saw multiple shops along the main street offering trips to various river rapids. With exceptional views and natural rivers of various difficulty level, I can see the appeal and draw for people with different rafting experience.
During a conversation with the guides, we found out there were 6 classes of difficulty for any river. While Class 1 consists of fast-moving water, with little to no obstacles, class 6 was described as ‘impossible to run’. I guess this is not the category for a beginner like me, or anyone really!
Luckily for us, Trisuli River is a Class 1- basically an easy cruise with 3-4 rapids. We all drew a breath of relief!
White Water Rafting at Trishuli River
We left our belongings in the van and met our instructor, Kumar from Adventure River Trails. After a brief introduction, some basic instructions and commands, and we were off into the river!
The Rafting Experience
The 2 hours ride was cathartic for a city dweller like me. For the most part, the scenery was absolutely breathe taking! On the calmer stretches of the river, the group would fell into a long silence, as a state of tranquillity washed over us.
We got very excited after experiencing our first rapids! It lasted only for 20 seconds but it definitely got our adrenaline pumping. We even passed by a stretch where the Nepali army was practicing shooting. They paused, as we automatically sped up on paddling!
Our white water rafting experience ended in Mugling- a popular place for domestic tourists. It is where they take the cable car up to the Manakamana Temple. It is believed that the Goddess of the temple grant wishes to all the pilgrimage that made the journey to worship her. We did not have enough time on this trip, but it sounded like an interesting place to see!
Rafting in Nepal Price (s)
The damage for international tourists, the price for a 1-day white water rafting in Nepal on Trishuli River (Class 1), is estimated to be between USD 20-40. When you are negotiating with the company, take note that the cost should at least cover the following,
- Transport from accommodation to the rafting start point
- Basic equipment -- life vests, helmets, paddle, dry bag for cameras, first aid kit
- An experienced instructor/ river guide
- River permit
The World’s Tallest, Longest, Steepest Zip Line
At the office of Highground Adventures in Pokhara, I had to choose between the zip flyer and bungy jumping. As soon as I found out that the zipline was the tallest, longest and the steepest in the world, I signed up right away!
At 1.8m long, with a 2000 feet vertical drop, the entire ride was over in 2 minutes; but it took us 1.5hours to get up there on a van. Nonetheless, it was still worth the effort for me!
However, I like to emphasis that the roads in Nepal are undergoing a massive makeover. It was definitely not the most comfortable ride. The people in Nepal also drive very casually. Even on a narrow road that was close to the edge, our drivers did not seem to have slowed down! So be warned!
Ziplining in Pokhara Price
The cost for zip lining is at a standard price of 4500rupees (USD40). Naturally, if you have a big group of interested participants, it is easier to get a group discount.
Paragliding in Pokhara
We had a morning with free time for ourselves, and we have heard good things about paragliding in Nepal. The selling point was definitely a front-row view of Himalayas! My buddy from Germany and I decided to experience it for ourselves. We were recommended to go with Frontiers Paragliding.
Paragliding in Pokhara Price (s)
After some Q&As, and a little bit of haggling (yes this is allowed in Nepal), we agreed at USD100 for the 45min ride. The regular price for paragliding in Pokhara is usually between USD100-150.
The lower price range is for a 30 minutes ride while the higher range is for a 45 minutes ride. The package usually comes with pictures and videos. If you visit during the monsoon season, between mid- June to early September, you can generally expect further discounts to make up for the cloudy skies!
What to Expect -- The Way Up
I was surprised we took the same road up as the zip line, even though the place for take-off was not as high. As we approached the top, we were welcomed with a sky filled with eager paragliders, it was a beautiful sight!
The Gilding Experience
This was my first time at paragliding, it was hard for me to wrap my head around the idea of walking off the cliff! I met my pilot, Anil Gurung who also practices Aerobatic paragliding. How did I find out? Definitely not because I ok-ed without a beat when Anil asked if I wanted to try ‘something crazy’.
I was not sure what to expect, but that thought did not last very long. Our glide started to sway sharply from side to side! It was exactly like the last few seconds on a pirate ship at a funfair. Without notice, we were suddenly upside down! I did not realise immediately, but I was staring at the ground. Anil told me, we were ‘tumbling’- basically making loops in the sky!
Tips and Recommendations
I have thoroughly enjoyed all the activities Pokhara has to offer and I was glad I tried them here. The scenery was beautiful, it was very affordable and the local instructors are friendly and helpful.
My only advice when you are here for adventure activities in Pokhara, ALWAYS make sure to organise the activities in the morning. Pokhara rains a lot in the afternoons and we found out it was a year-round condition, monsoon seasons or not. Example, the zip line suspended operation when it started to drizzle.
Although it is a safety precaution I appreciate, but it is a real bummer if you have to end up waiting like we did!
Which of these outdoor activities would you like to try the most in Nepal?