Nepal is one of the most happening destinations in the world! With a heady mixture of unique culture proudly preserved, mind boggling adventure and remarkable natural beauty, Nepal offers an astonishing diversity of sightseeing attractions and adventure opportunities found nowhere else on earth. Imagine a trekking with a breathtaking view on eight of the ten highest mountains in the world or an elephant ride in the jungle, all within a distance of only 150 kilometers. If you are visiting Nepal for the first time you may be wondering what to see and expect in your trip. So many things of interest for a visitor, such a spectacular topography, such a richness of culture and wealth of flora and fauna all packed in this small country, a very rare combination anywhere.
The capital Kathmandu together with towns of Bhaktapur and Patan are medieval cities packed with hundreds of masterpiece temples and stupas, some dating back even second and fifth centuries. It is only in Kathmandu that seven UNESCO declared world heritage sites lie in a periphery of just thirty kilometers. The medieval sights and sounds so different but so friendly will take you in its spell. This country has such a topographical contrast that elevation ranges from 70 meters above sea level in Jhapa to world's highest mountain, Everest 8848m above the sea level. This unique variation has given Nepal a varied eco system, both thick tropical and alpine forest swarmed with diverse wildlife, great peaks of the world, frozen valleys, deep gorges, mysterious caves, furious himalayan rivers running down the hills and cool and calm lakes. In such a smalll country you can see tropical animals like wild elephants, tigers, rhinocerous and also alpine animals like snow leopards.
Nepal is the home to 2% of all flowering plants in the world, 8% (848 species) of the total birds of the world (more birds than in USA and Canada combined), 11 of 15 butterfly families found in the world (500 species), 600 indigenous plant families and more than 300 species of orchid species. And a population of 26 million people with about 60 ethnic groups speaking 70 different languages is a place with vibrant cultures, exotic traditions and festivals, unique art and architectures and above all very friendly people, all very alluring to the visitors.
Being birthplace of lord Buddha, founder of Buddhism, Lumbini in southern Nepal is visited by Buddhists from all over the world. The great number of Tibetan refugees with their lamas, rinpochhe and stupas make Nepal a place ideal for those interested in Tibetan Buddhism. Few people know that original Tibetan culture survives in remote and exotic Nepali villages bordering with Tibet, rather than in Tibet itself. Most of these villages can be visited in one or the other treks to the Himalayas.
And not the least, Nepal is the home to the world's highest mountain, Mt. Everest, eight out of 10 highest mountains of the world lie in Nepal There are hundreds of other peaks that offer great treks and challenging climbing opportunities, making Nepal a great place for mountaineering adventure. The Himalayan glaciers are the source of many thundering rivers which offer excellent white water rafting opportunities in Nepal. You might come to see the Himalayas and trek among the world's highest mountains but once you are here you will discover so much more.
Just because Nepal is poor and not adequately publicized in world forums, otherwise Nepal has the potential to be one of the most popular holiday destination among the seekers of culture and mountain adventure.