If you are travelling to Nepal then you should halt at Pokhara at least for a minimum of three days. Also referred to as the `Jewel of the Himalayas’, it is about 210kms from Kathmandu. If you have landed at Kathmandu then you can either take a flight to Pokhara or take the roadway.
A popular tourist destination, Pokhara has a tranquil atmosphere and a beautiful surrounding countryside. It lies on the shores of the Phewa Lake and the area surrounding it is full of lovely shops and restaurants. On the south-end of town, you can catch a boat to the historic Barahi temple, which is located on an island in the Phewa Lake.
Pokhra is the gateway to the 8000 mts snowcapped giant Annapurna Himalayas region where many a trekker finds his Shangri-La. One has to start early morning to feel the pristine air, the spectacular backdrop of the snowy peaks of the Annapurna Range.
The area along Phewa Tal, the largest lake in the valley, was first a camping ground for trekkers and has gradually developed into the tourist hub. One can see three out of the ten highest mountains in the world Dhaulagiri, Annapurna and Manasalu. The Machhapuchre (Fishtail) has become the icon of the city, thanks to its pointed peak.
There’s also the `World Peace Pagoda,’ situated on the southern fringe of Phewa Lake. It has four images of the Buddha facing in four directions. The dome-shaped pagoda is an impressive sight. It is a Buddhist Stupa, a monument to inspire peace for people of all races and creeds. For those uninitiated, peace pagoda were build after the World war II under the guidance of Nichidatsu Fujii the founder of Nipponzan –Myohoji, a Buddhist order. You can sit inside and meditate for hours and come out feeling completely light. If you are looking for a spiritual holiday then there are many Yoga retreats at the Everest base camp
Gandaki River has created spectacular gorges in and around the city. At places, it is only a few meters wide and runs so far below that it is not visible from the top.
You can also explore the Mahendra Cave, a large limestone cave famous for its stalactites and stalagmite rocks. Then walk across to the Pokhara Bazaar where you see ethnically diverse group of traders. The old bazaar is also home to one of Pokhara’s most important shrines, the Bindhyabasini Mandir, a white dome-like structure atop a hill.
Also, head to the Devil’s Fall, known locally as the Patale Chhango. Gandaki River has created spectacular gorges in and around the city. At places, it is only a few meters wide and runs so far below that it is not visible from the top.
Pokhara also has an amazing nightlife. It is, in fact, one of the most happening places to party in the world. In the evening, do catch your favorite drink and head to the dance floor or soak in the music. Some of the well known places are, All that Jazz, Old Blues Bar and Caffe Concerto.