– Khim Ghale
Lamjung’s Barahpokhari situated at a height of 3100 meters, is a virgin area for tourists. You must visit it once in your lifetime.
Just imagine, reclining on a grassy spot, close to the pond and reading a fiction; suddenly the cool air whispers into your ears and strikes your nose and makes the spot perfumed with the fragrance of rhododendron flower blooming all around in the surroundings, can virtually give you an impression of heavenly atmosphere here.
The area is a virgin for the simple reason that no tourists have ever visited this tantalizing area. The description of this virgin area and its surroundings cannot be possible with limited words.
We could only get the notice of vivid panoramic glimpses of the natural beauty of this virgin spot after Marshyangdi rural municipality included us in the study group of this area.
How to go there?
There are several trails to reach the Barahpokhari area. This area is the traditional habitat for Gurung cowherds to the other side of the Marshyangdi. So, following Gurung cowherds can also enable you to reach this virgin area for tourism.
Anyway, one of the routes can be getting down at Bhulbhule from the Marshyangdi rural municipality and take the road through Bhusme and Kalme to reach this area.
Similarly, taking roads via Nayagaun, Usta and Chhinkhola can also be possible to reach Barahapokhari.
Routes going through Khasur and Kalme of Besisahar municipality -10 can also be other routes to follow.
Routes going through Chiti-Tilar and Taxar of Besisahar municipality can also lead to this new area. Additionally, taking the route through Khinchowk and other villages can be possible to reach this spot.
We actually chose the route going uphill through Usta and Chhinkhola in the Marshyangdi rural municipality. While returning, we descended to Besisahar via Kalme danda-Kasur.
We stayed at Besisahar on the first day when we moved from Kathmandu, although you may choose to stay at Busme, Usta, Khasar, and Taxar depending upon your choice. This will shorten the next day’s long journey.
The second-day journey starts from Besisahar after having morning tea and snack to reach Bhulbhule and Dandi. We met with Arjun Gurung, who is the chairperson of the Barahapokhari tourism area who has been sponsoring all visits for us.
The local dish prepared by the mothers’ group was really delicious enough for us to move ahead on our journey.
We could travel in a jeep up to Chhinkhola are after which resorted to uphill road march upwards. It is nearly four hours’ walk through the jungle. Cool air blows to comfort your tiresome road march.
As soon as we reach atop the hill area, we are welcomed by cool air and glimpses of a variety of rhododendron flowers. We had seen only red-colored rhododendron flower so far. But here we could also see white and pink colored rhododendron as well which of course enticed us very much and we relished the best moments of life.
Nearly one and a half hours’ walk across the hilly route helped us to reach our main destination of the Barahpokhari- virgin tourist area. A small pond known as Barahpokhari is completely surrounded by the flowers of rhododendron from all sides that creates the fantastic and magical effect of the pond to look at.
Mr. Jamindra Man Ghale, a former parliamentarian says that tourists can make this pond as the base camp and go beyond to visit other tourist landscapes and religious sites.
We take a different route while returning. The route is traveling to Kalme via Chitre and Deurali from Barahpokhari. We halted here for that night. On the third day, we decided to stay at Khasur homestay.
On the fourth day, we returned to Kathmandu.
What to do at Barahpokhari?
Enjoying the fascinating natural beauty at a height of 3100 meters, by starring at series of icy ranges of Annapurna and Manaslu mountains with sunset and sunrise glimpses are the main watchable hallmarks of this virgin area never explored before.
This area is significant not only from the tourism point of view, but also from the religious point of view because an annual fete is held here in the month of August every year, where even dumb children are believed to have started speaking after getting the blessing here.
Those tourists willing to travel to Dudpokhari may travel so via Thodi, Tarwal Pokhari, and Karuwa Pokhari.
According to one of the folk tales, people could reach Nar Fu of Manang from Chamurche. But the folk tale says that once when Manang’s yak used to come to Chamurche to eat the grass, the people from this site killed and ate the cows after which the Lama of Manang cast some spell and erected a wall between Nar-Fu and Chamurche.
The local government has given assurance that this virgin tourist area will soon be promoted.
There is no homestay here or arrangement of any hotels, yet around 40 tourists can adjust to stay for the night in one of the inns here.
Tents can be carried over to this place for use. Tourism entrepreneur Mr. Balaram Thapa says,” We have not been able to attract both internal as well as external tourists, although this virgin area has a lot of tourism potentialities”
He further said that if proper dissemination of information about the virgin place is done, then the hopes can be fulfilled. Hotels, homestay, and resorts are being planned.
Generally, in the months of April, August, October, February, and May can be the best seasons for the foreigners to visit this virgin tourist area. Even the rainy season is suitable because a lot of Himalayan ranges can be clearly watched during this time.
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