Mountain Town, Ancient Flavour Bandipur

An Introduction: Midway on the day-long drive between Kathmandu and Pokhara lies the hilltop settlement of Bandipur - a Newar town with its age-old flavour intact.Catching the historical trail at Dumre Bazaar, one climbs through pristine forests to arrive at a township that has hardly changed.While the other trading posts of the Nepali hills have modernised, Bandipur retains its age-old cultural activities. It still has its temples, shrines, holy caves, innumerable festivals and a Newari architecture that harks back to the Kathmandu Valley of old.

On a wide saddle at a height of 1005 m (3500 ft) overlooking the Marsyangdi river valley, Bandipur provides an unrivalled view of the Himalayan panorama (including the range of Gorkha Himal, above). The surrounding hills are ideal for hiking, along trails that take you through tribal villages, verdant forests, 'power places', and hilltop shrines which once doubled as fortresses.

Well-preserved Bandipur today invites travellers to come and experience its unique offerings: mountain cultures, mountain views, and mountain walking. Bandipur is tantalising - and as yet undiscovered.

Bandipur's Past

The placenames around Bandipur indicate that the surrounding region, known as Tanahun

How To Get There, Where To Stay

The best way to Bandipur is to arrive by mid-day at Dumre Bazaar from Pokhara or Kathmandu, and to hike it up.

Sights of Bandipur

Mountain Views: The hillocks that surround Bandipur provides an unequalled panoramic view of the Himalayan ramparts to the north.

Temples and Festivals

Khadga Devi Temple: This two-storeyed temple can be missed, because it looks like an ordinary dwelling.

The Town Today

In the end, the road's alignment may have been a boon rather than a bane. While many Newar hill towns lost their distinctiveness after joining the highway grid, Bandipur retained its originality.