- Sushant Lama
Four and a half-hour drive away from the Kathmandu valley on the way to Pokhara, lies a beautiful hilltop settlement of Newari people called Bandipur.
As beautiful as its name sounds, its characteristics are also amazingly good. It is one of central Nepal’s hidden gem filled with pure Newari culture, age-old architecture, spectacular views of mountains, green hills, excellent accommodation and much more.
If you wanna get out of busy city life and have some quality time then Bandipur is the best place to get a wholesome flavor of rural Nepal.
Saddam Sayyaleh from Jordan who visited Bandipur says, “It is an amazing place and the community here in Bandipur are friendly and welcoming”.
Bandipur is a traditional village of Tanahun district which has been enticing lots of tourists to offers one of the best hiking and sightseeing experiences in Nepal due to its colossal beauty of pristine forests, historical trails, Newari village, and beautiful culture. Modernization has not affected Bandipur and it has been able to maintain its old culture, tradition, and architecture.
Bandipur is composed of buildings with 18th-century architectural buildings which have stood firm and are used today as hotel, shops, cafes, and lodgings. The main street lined with a traditional row of buildings will welcome you with different colors and flowers and the scenic beauty it offers is remarkable.
Pedestrian zone and outdoor dining around the main street will certainly give you a distinctly European feel. You can also enjoy the magical beauty of mountains from rooftop cafes. Due to the presence of lots of beautiful places, it offers exotic hiking and cycling experience.
Places to visit around Bandipur
Though small in area, Bandipur offers lots of tourist destinations in and out of the town.
Previously parade ground but now the football field, Tudhikhel provides spectacular views of Gorkha Palace, Manakamana peak, green hills, and surrounding areas like Marsyangdi valley, Bimalnagar, and Dumre. Mountains like Dhaulagiri, Machhapuchhre, Langtang, Manaslu and Ganesh Himal can be easily seen from here. It is also the main place where various festivities take place.
John says, “Bandipur surprised me with a spectacular view of Himalayas”
Khadga Devi Temple
It is one of the most important temples of Bandipur. It looks like a common house but inside resides goddess Khadga Devi. There are no statues of a goddess but only a Khadga( Sword wrapped in the layer of fabric) representing female power, Khadga Devi. Legends have it that the sword was present from lord Shiva to Mukunda Sen, the rural of Palpa.
Thani Mai Temple
It is the natural viewpoint of Bandipur. Spectacular views of sunrise, sunset, and surrounding areas seen from here are the main reason to hike up to Thani Mai Temple. The picturesque view of the Himalayan ranges stretching out along the horizon from here is awesome.
It is another historic building with 18th-century architecture located in the heart of Bandipur with collections of very old books, and few English ones from the time of the Rana regime.
Another important shrine located in Bandipur is the Bindhabasini temple. Built-in Pagoda style, this temple is dedicated to goddess Durga. Its walls are covered in carvings and pictures of goddess Bindhabasini. During the New Year, the picture of Bindhebasini is put on a chariot and pulled through the town.
There is the presence of a beautiful Buddhist monastery on the top of the hill. It offers a peaceful environment for travelers.
Vinod describes Bandipur as “A home of Natural Paradise”.
It is the main wellspring for the villagers. It is rich in architectural carvings and is built in an old style. Like its name, there used to be three-tap but now there are five taps.
Siddha Gufa cave
It is the largest cave in Nepal and the second largest in Asia extending 437m deep and 50 m in height. Its interior is filled with stalactites and stalagmites along with hundreds of bats. It has its historical importance as legend has it that Siddha Baba meditated in this cave. Anybody can abseil down the cave and explore its beauty.
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