Nepal is also a popular paradise destination for hiking as well as bird watching while hiking. Monastery to Monastery hike is popular as well as an affordable hiking package in the outskirts of Kathmandu valley to experience the real wildlife and hypnotic beauty of the dense forests.
This Monastery to Monastery Hike (from Nagi Gumba to Kopan Gumba) is favorable to those visitors who wish to hike within their short stay in Kathmandu and are interested in exploring the Buddhists Monasteries. The walking distance from Shivapuri to Kopan Monastery will be around 12 kilometers and the duration will be around 5 hours. It will take 2 hours up and down in vehicle to drop and pick from the hotel to Shivapuri and from Kopan.
We first drive from the hotel to Shivapuri and the duration is about 2 hours. Then, the hiking starts from the place, named Panimuhan, the checkpoint of Shivapuri Nagarjuna National Park.
During the walk, you pass through the beautiful forests with wide varieties of trees such as pine, alder, hazelnuts, bayberry, yellow raspberries, Nepali plumps, and even medicinal plants. You will also see flower varieties like rhododendrons, blue mimosa, Gulmohar, jacaranda, orchids and may see the bird varieties like common mina, Robin, Magpie, tree pie, bulbul, cuckoo, babbler, owl, and an equal number of butterflies. It is also the research hub for students.
Now, continuing the trail, we then ascend to Nagi Gumba (2215 m). This monastery is the only monastery where you can find female monks and also known as the hidden monastery, where we can see the statue of Tara’s and Bodhisattvas and the movement of nuns praying and reciting the mantras. Then the hikers follow through Tarebhir (the famous viewpoint from where we can enjoy the wider view of Kathmandu valley).
It is the vertical cliff where we walk through the Tamang village and can observe their way of living, what they cultivate as cash crops on their terrace and how they run domestic animal farms. It might take about 1 hour 30 minutes to hike from Nagi Gumba to Tarebhir, which covers a distance of about 4 kilometers.
Now you walk through the pine forest with the melodious and whistling sound of wind and also the colorful prayer flags which are hung from trees to trees. The flags circulate the positive vibes for the recreation that helps to reduce the stress and help to rejuvenate the soul. After enjoying the mesmerizing view from Tarebhir, the hikers gradually descend to Kopan Monastery (the famous Tibetan Buddhist Monastery). The distance from Tare Bhir to Kopan Monastery is about 2 kilometers and the duration would be around 1 hour.
Kopan Gumba, the pioneer monastery in Kathmandu Valley. Under Mahayana tradition and Gelugpa sect, it is also the center for yoga, meditation, and retreat. Our hiking ends here.
You will drive back to Kathmandu which will take about another 1 hour (In case there is no traffic jam)