Before making our minds up and getting on the adventure, let’s know a thing or two about Nepal and the Best Time To Travel to Nepal. The geography of Nepal ranges from 600 feet in the Terai region to 39000 feet at Mount Everest.
What does this mean to you?
Well, this variation in elevation causes huge differences in climatic conditions throughout the country.
Also, being geographically diverse, Nepal has a lot to offer. The majestic mountains in the north, lusty green hills in the middle and plain grasslands in the south offer a perfect gateway to nature. Exploring new cultures, observing rare wildlife, getting up close to the highest mountains,or wandering through the 17th-century architectural wonders, there is something for everyone.
The best time to visit Nepal depends entirely on your idea of adventure. Fall would bring stable weather and clear skies. This would be a suitable time for trekkers and hikers. Monsoon during the summer season welcomes adventure sports enthusiasts for an adrenaline rush. White water rafting would be in full swing at this time of the year. A bird watcher would have time of their life during Spring.
A well-planned trip makes Nepal an all-year-round destination. Depending upon the wishlist on your dream vacation, here’s our guide on choosing the best time to visit Nepal.
Seasons in Nepal
Just like the rest of the world, there are four seasons in Nepal. The change in seasons brings about the changes in temperature, wind chills, precipitation, and snowfall. This plays a major role in tourism as the number of visitors skyrockets during autumn.
However, monsoon during the summer season sees an exponential decline leading to almost empty teahouses and massive discount offers.
Autumn is the holy grail of seasons in Nepal for mountaineers and hikers. Mild temperature, clear skies, and fresh air make way for an orgasmic view of the Himalayas. This season is characterized by a high number of visitors, the onset of Nepali holidays, and pleasant temperatures. Along with that, K-Town hosts KIMFF- A global film festival where you would get to enjoy documentaries from all over the world. This would be the best time to travel to Nepal for any activities.
- The onset of the trekking season
- Beautiful views of mountain ranges
- Paragliding, Bungee jumping, adventure photography and mountaineering
- Cultural insights as Nepal celebrates it’s biggest festivals
Winter season brings the chill in the air. The temperature may even drop to negative on the hilly and mountain areas of Nepal this season. The skies are clear so that you can even watch the beautiful scenery of Mountain if you are planning for trekking. High Altitude trekking is not possible around this season since there is a high probability of Snowfall and flight cancellation.
- Less trekker on trails making it peaceful and quieter
- Hassle-free journey and massive discounts
- Sparkling view of snow-clad mountains and tranquil scenery
- Best time for professional mountain photography
The spring season usually starts from the month of March and ends with the month of May. Hills covered with blooming Rhododendron is a joy to witness. Warm days and cold nights attract a huge number of visitors to trekking. Also, this would be a good time to get close to the forest as wild animals are more likely to be spotted around this time.
- Blooming Rhododendron covers entire hills, offering a picturesque scenario for hikers
- Jungle safaris to witness rare animals like tigers, lemurs, exotic birds, and one-horned rhinoceros
- Celebration of Holi, the festival of colors
Summer season gives rise to sizzling hot temperatures in the south. This season brings frequent showers which makes it difficult for hiking and trekking in most of the country. There are a few exceptions like Mustang, Dolpo, and Annapurna region. Being in a rain-shadow region, they hardly receive any rainfall which makes them a go-to destination for visitors. This is also the season for adventure tourism. Rafting sees the highest number of thrill-seekers in these months.
- The limited number of visitors ensures that trekking trails will not be crowded.
- Hotels and teahouses offer huge discounts. So it’s a good time to travel if you are a backpacker on a budget.
- Adventure sports are main attractions during monsoon
- Mustang, Dolpo, and Annapurna region are major destinations for this season.
Best Time to Travel to Nepal Based on Your Interest
An avid hiker or an enthusiastic traveler would definitely have Nepal in their to-do list. Nepal offers varieties of trekking destinations. There are short hikes ranging from 1-3 days. The medium-range hikes usually last for a week. If you’re in the mood for some extreme adventures, there are some longer hikes that go anywhere from 1-4 weeks and more. The difficulty level of hikes is usually ranked as easy, moderate, and challenging. This is based on the elevation, climate, and roughness of the terrain.
The short hikes are available all year round. Pack some raincoats, a windbreaker or waterproof jackets for monsoon. However, the moderate trails can be quite challenging during showers. The grasses are full of leeches and the slippery tracks pose as the biggest challenges. Usually, longer treks are often empty with no visitors. Many of the off the beaten trails are completely shut down.
If you enjoy solitude and want to skip the crowd of fellow travelers, this would be the perfect time for you. Just make sure that you do the required bookings early and voila!
Generally speaking, any season other than summer is ideal for all the other trekkers.
Just like the trekking trails, Nepal provides a gateway to mountain peaks. There are many peaks ranging from 5000-7000 meters. These peaks welcome a high number of climbers every year. The climb is either non-technical or technical depending on the route difficulty and elevation. A healthy trekker can access the summit of non-technical peaks. However, the technical peaks require experience and paramount health conditions.
If you’re into climbing, then there are two seasons you can choose from.-August to November and March to May.
If you are planning to conquer Everest, April to May is the best time to go.
Nepal is the holy land for Hindus. And Hinduism is the religion of festivals. Also, Nepal blends Hinduism and Buddhism together to form a culturally rich society. The ‘city of gods’ celebrates numerous festivals all throughout the year. Some of the biggest festivals are:
- Holi, the festival of colors- February/March
- Dashain, the longest holiday- October
- Tihar, the festival of lights- November
- Ghode Jatra – April
- Gai Jatra-August
Don’t let this make you think that Christmas is unheard of here. The Christmas and New Year vibe in the biggest cities will make you feel like home. There are concerts, parties, and celebrations in many cities including the capital. No matter when you plan to visit, you will get to celebrate at least a festival. Therefore the best time to travel to Nepal for festivals is- Anytime!
The national parks and conservation areas in Nepal boasts some of the rarest animals in the world. The red panda, one-horned rhinoceros, Royal Bengal tiger, and alligators are some of the major attractions. The visitors hop in either in a jeep or on elephants to the dense parts of the forest. They are often blessed with the views of this exotic wildlife.
Chitwan National Park, the oldest one of Nepal is enlisted in the world heritage site for its biodiversity. This prominent tourist destination houses 600 species of birds, 68 species of mammals, and 55 species of amphibians and reptiles.
The best time to travel to Nepal for jungle safari is from September to March.
Pokhara, a city on the western side of Kathmandu is the home for many adventure sports. Boating, hiking, pony rides, paragliding, bungee, zipline or simply relaxing at one of the several lakes in the valley. You name it. These adrenaline-pumping activities are open all year round. Bear in mind that monsoon and severe wind conditions can affect the schedules.
Apart from them, white water rafting is also famous in Nepal. Although the adventure trips occur the whole year-round, October to June is the best time to go.
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Tips For Travelling in Nepal
Here are some of the major heads up for traveling in Nepal:
- Don’t trek alone. If you don’t have a partner, hire a local guide.
- Be aware of snakes and bugs during the summer season. Bushes around the houses are often the hiding places for this creepy crawlies.
- Make sure you get the required permits for mountain climbing. Note that the children below 18 are not allowed.
- Flight cancellation is common during the winter season, especially in the mountain region. So allocate some spare days, just in case.
- Always carry cash, debit, and credit cards are not a norm here.
- Roads in Kathmandu are often flooded and full of pit holes. So be careful while walking around during rain
- Do not drink tap water. Opt for bottled water or use purification tablets instead.
- Make sure that you have travel insurance before heading out for treks.
So there you have it!
List the things you want to do, check the seasons they open in, and book them if required. And that’s it. Any time is the best time to visit Nepal if you’re unsure of what to do. Fly to this beautiful nation and we promise you will find something that interests you right from the get-go.