Thursday, October 17, 2013

Hiking around Pokhara

Our first full day in Pokhara, we set our alarm clocks to get up and watch the sunrise because the hotel owner said on a clear day it was amazing and you could see five of the tallest peaks and it would be worth it. We were excited. It started out as a possibly good experience....

And then the fog wouldn't lift :( And it never really did the entire time we were in Pokhara. We were able to see some of the tallest peaks but some of them were hidden by clouds the entire time. October is supposed to be the best time to visit, no clouds and no rain but unfortunately it was an off week when we were there and we had both.

We had arranged with our hotel to have a guide for the day to do an easy hike around a village. We said we wanted to be gone for about five hours and nothing too strenuous. turned out to be a little more challenging especially going up in the beginning than we thought but it was great and so worth it to get out and explore the villages around where we were.

We started out at the World Peace Pagoda which was near our hotel.

And hiked up to a viewing can see the World Peace Pagoda very faintly in the left side of the picture below to give you an idea of height and distance.

We then walked up to another platform area from the second mound that is in the picture below to give you some perspective of our route and how far we had gone.

Then we stopped at another village the second picture you can no longer see our starting point.

We walked through some villages and encountered some kids along the way but mostly were able to see people doing their day to day living and just experience a different side of Nepal.

We hiked to this viewing platform/museum but it was closed :( we were going to stop for lunch there but since it wasn't open we had to hike back. Thankfully the hike back was easier! But we didn't factor in that we both forgot sunscreen and our necks were super burnt!

It was a long but great day hike! We went back to the hotel for lunch, showers and a nice long nap. We woke up that night with the idea to go into the main town/shopping area and explore. We didn't want to deal with taxis again so we found out we could walk down from the Peace Pagoda to the lake and hire a boat to take us across BUT we needed to get down before dark and before the rain storm came. So we started hiking down and down and down and realized it was taking us much longer than we expected. Thankfully we made it down in time and got a boat to take us across . It started sprinkling on the ride over but it wasn't too bad. 

We explored the shopping areas and then a DOWNPOUR hit and we were soaked. We for some reason didn't bring any of our rain gear with us shopping so we had to buy some ponchos and then started shopping again. The streets became pretty flooded and hard to cross so we decided to eat and wait out the rain. We enjoyed a delicious dinner and a restaurant we found and then finished up our shopping and then we realized we had to find a taxi to get us back to the hotel. Problem was dark and it had just flooded the streets and we had to go up dirt roads up a mountain to our hotel. We were scared that we wouldn't find someone willing and would have to get a hotel in town for the night. We asked a shop keeper if he had any ideas and he was so helpful and found us a guy, talked him down to a reasonable price and helped arrange this for us....and all we bought from him was two bracelets for $3 total. The people of Nepal were so generous, welcoming and warm and this was just another example of it. 

A long, fun and adventurous day and we slept very well that night!

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