Off the Beaten Path: Discovering Hidden Gems in Nepal

Feb 21 . 2023,Omi Karki

People are continuously fixated on the lookout to feel and explore their next big adventure. Their progressing need and desire to experience more are taking a toll on the conventionally established areas of Tourism ventures.

Nepal is world-renowned for its monumental mountains, rigorously beautiful trekking routes, breathtaking vistas and serene cultural atmosphere. The ambient within the periphery of this flowery land cannot be encapsulated with just the obvious. The unique blend of geological and ecological combination has ever-synced the ground with so much more to explore and the feeling that it is never yet enough.

So, to combine an eccentric touch to your travel lookouts, here is a list of less travelled roads and paths leading to uncovering the hidden gems of Nepal. These regions, places and establishments are Nepal's lost treasures, along with nature's top zephyrs, virgin paths, sacred ethical values, unique flora and faunas, supple water bodies and sterile harmony.

Here is a list of the top 7 Hidden Gems you should consider travelling to during your stay in this magnificent domain. 

Best Offbeat Places to Visit in Nepal

Siddha Gufa (Cave) in Bandipur

Bandipur is one of Nepal's most influential tourism hubs, well known for its glamourous hilltop vistas of the Himalayan ranges, situated in the Tanahun district of Gandaki province. Commonly, people visit Bandipur for its eye-catching appeal of nature's aesthetics, but also introspect; the place is also a hermit's zone filled with numerous caves, and along them, the most captivating is the Siddha Gufa.

The Cave is a 437 meters tunnel with 50 meters high ceilings. The space makes the place feel like another ecosystem similar to earth, and the cathedral interior appearance of the structure is admirably rich with minerals like Stalactites and Stalagmites. 

Thriving with the Newari culture, Bandipur lies 147 kilometres from Kathmandu and can be reached via a one-day Bus ride. It is also possible if you want to arrange a private mode of transport for more comfort and convenience. Either way, the road trip will take you away from the busy town to small villages, through thick and thin woods, and gradually out of your comfort zone.

As you look right out the window, you will reminisce about the blissfulness of hills and mountain ranges, some covered in fog, and some mystifying their existence with the showered rays of the sun. Some places will shine as bright as the facets of diamonds, while as the clouds grumble, uncertain rainfalls can also be expected. Nevertheless, you will find the incomprehensible manifestation of natural sanity and fulfilment from your travel to the beautiful town of Bandipur.

Olangchung Gola in Taplejung

Olangchung Gola is a small mountain settlement in Nepal's northeast Kanchenjunga conservation reserve. The trek to Olangchung Gola offers a distinct adventure reward as this settlement lies in the farthest northeast flunk village bordering Tibet in the north. The place is a natural utopia and reserves commercial significance since it was an important strategic point for trade with Tibet during the 80s.

The far-flung village of the northeast is also renowned as the hometown of the famous ophthalmologist Sanduk Ruit and the first female tourism minister of Nepal, Yankila Sherpa.

With the rise in the popularity of remote villages offering unique sanctity in the tourism spectrum, Olangchung Gola is one of the most potential hotspots roaring with numerous waterfalls, forested hills, suspension bridges and mountain vistas.

The path to reach this off-the-grid settlement rigorously feasts the adventurer's guild as the passage goes alongside the magnificent Tamor river, flanked by rocky hills on each side. An experience through the natural gates of lush vegetation is indeed to embowel your altruistic mindsets to a rhythmic flow.

Similarly, as the settlement rests within the periphery of the Kanchenjunga region, you will begin your trek from Rani Pool, the starting point to reach Kanchenjunga North Base Camp.

Namje in Dhankuta

Namje is a small village settlement resting at an altitude of 1585 meters in Sangurigadhi Rural Municipality of Dhankuta in Eastern Nepal. The location is home to the Magar community, and the principal occupation is farming. The place exhibits traditional houses, terraced fields surrounded by lush forested hills, and an adverse weather pattern that changes five times a day.

At the same time, in the north, you can indulge in the picturesque peaks of the fifth-highest mountain Mt. Makalu smiling over the village.

If you consider travelling to Namje, you can fly from Kathmandu to Biratnagar. The other much-preferred way is by Bus via Dakshinkali-Hetauda road, from Kathmandu to Bhedetar, elongated to a distance of 422 kilometres.

Namje is a popular tourism hub of intrinsic tourists, while it offers magnificent sky vistas one can observe from Dhoje Dada, situated at an elevation of 2133 meters. The place provides an eye-catching vision of the fiery skies, sunsets and sunrise while the mountain ranges sit back in the land abyss, including Mt Everest, Kanchenjunga and Makalu.

Moreover, Namje inhabits other internal highlights such as a 400-year-old Bunyan tree spreading at 13 Ropani land and numerous caves. Similarly, people can enjoy the 200-year-old dance called Hurra and Maruni, played in a rhythmic flow of Madal, where Boys and girls come together in their traditional attire to showcase their ancestral rituals and values.

Janakpur Dham in Janakpur

Janakpur Dham, located in the Dhanusha District of the Central Development Region, is an important religious site and tourism destination of Nepal. The region heavily welcomes spiritual and religious tourists from Nepal, India and Bangladesh.

The town is well known for its centuries-old tales of Lord Ram's consort and as the birthplace of goddess Sita. The city is covered with a charismatic display of distinctive artworks, eloquently resting as one of a kind metropolis sporadically built from the current formation of towns.

The town's name is derived from the sage king Janak, comprised of numerous historical holy sites from various eras showing the affluence of its fame over centuries. Some must-visit areas in Janakpur are Janaki Temple, Ram Mandir, Janak Mandir, Vivaha Temple, sacred Sagars (ponds) and Lazman temple. Each site with its tale and significance; the most auspicious time to observe the city at its splendour lies on Ram Nawami, Chhath festival and Vivah Panchami.

If you are looking for a taste of the culture and tradition of the people of the Terai community of Nepal, Janakpur is one of the most promising sites to fulfil your desires.

Upper Mustang

Upper Mustang is well known for its remoteness and solitude, hovering with rigorous challenges and a journey of a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Formerly termed the Kingdom of Lo, Upper Mustang is deemed Nepal's last remaining forbidden kingdom, artistically built and preserved by the local inhabitants who follow Tibetan culture. The most common occupation of the regional people revolves around animal husbandry, tourism and trade.

The region was opened for tours and treks in 1992, making it one of the most isolated paradises of Nepal. Since then, thousands of travel enthusiasts have ventured into the area, and the discovery has left everyone fulfilled. One can discover numerous ancient caves, arid land, cliffs, and holy fossil rocks in the Tibetan Plateau zone.

The region also lies in the famous Annapurna Circuit trek stationing glorious vistas over Mt Annapurna, Manaslu and Dhaulagiri. The most common form of accessibility to uncover this range is via bus ride from Pokhara, or one can sit back and fly straight to Jomsom via plane.

After a night's stay in Kagbeni, the trek continues from Chele towards Syangboche through the Samar village, a well-known shortstop to fill your vigour with the awe-smacking view of Nilgiri Mountain. The regions follow along Syanboche till we reach the village of Ghami shortly after passing through high altitude paths like Yamda La Pass at 3,845 meters.

The journey takes us across the desert landscape through Geling and Tamagaun to a much less resided settlement of Tsarang, inhabiting roughly 1000 local people. From there, your trek will rest at Lo Manthang, ascending through the Lo La Pass that delivers magnificent views of Annapurna I, Brikuti Peak, Tilicho Lake and Nilgiri.

During the expedition, you will visit the famous Ghar Monastery, ancient gompas, and the meditation ground of renowned Tantric Buddhist Master Padmasambhava.

On your way back, Muktinath is one of the most important sites, carrying religious importance to Hindus and Buddhists. The temple hosts 108 water spouts to bathe, and an eternal flame lies ever-burning in the temple.

Vale of Eternity: Barun Valley in Makalu Barun National Park

Situated in the lap of Mt Makalu, in the Sankhuwasabha district of Nepal, Barun Valley is entirely sheltered within the Makalu Barun National Park. The Valley originated from the Barun River, which turns into a glacier during winter.

Away from any human touch and interference, the Valley lives in complete harmony, guided by its pristine Himalayan ecosystem and provides stunning contrasts, deep gorges made by high waterfalls, lush green vegetation, and vibrant flowery grasslands.

With some of the last remaining natural balance on earth, Barun valley is home to numerous rare breeds of animals and plants that flourish in the manifolds of myriad climates. Since the Valley is located within the vicinity of National Park, the abyss is a wonderland for watching over 440 species of birds and endangered species, including Musk Deer, Red Panda, Snow Leopard and 75 other mammal species.

Similarly, in the Sherpa language, the Valley is called 'Nghe', meaning Sacred Place. Its resemblance is occupied by the Buddhist folklore and encapsulated in Buddhist religious books as the Valley being a 'Beyul'. Meaning that it is one of the seven evergreen valleys which also reference the fountain of youth, or in general, the Valley where one cannot grow old. The mythology also instates that during any natural catastrophes, these seven havens will be the last place where life will continue to grow and flourish. 

The Wild West – Sudurpaschim

Sudurpaschim, the seventh provincial state of Nepal, also known as Far West, is blanketed with mysticism and hidden treasures. Formerly during the 13th century, Sudurpaschim was deemed as the Doti Kingdom, one of eight princely kingdoms of Katyuri of Kumoan. The region has distinct history under-bellied by Mughal Empires and inhabits India's historical period. Later, the area was unified by Prithvi Narayan Shah during the unification of Nepal.

Nevertheless, the territory extends to an area of 19,539 sq km comprising a handful of National Parks and Conservation areas. This rare insight area is a bustling rock for all the rollers, including numerous pilgrimage sites, virgin trekking routes, and majestic mountain vistas for the wanderlusts.

The western province is renowned for its set of practices of distinct dialects, culture, traditional ethics, and festivals apart from the rest of Nepal. Deuda, a cultural dance festival practised in this region, will have you bonding with the locals in no time as you dance alongside the rhythms.

The entitlement "The Wild West" is justifiably handed to this land for its richness in biodiversity of flora and fauna from all elevation perspectives. Likewise, the region holds three national parks, the foremost being Shuklaphanta National Park, in the terai belt of the region. The second is Khaptad National Park, which guides over the hills and the mid-Himalayan stretches, and the third is Api Conservation Area, which exhibits the Himalayas. Each one with its distinct features, geography and taste, Sudurpaschim has more than one way of presenting vigour to its visitors.

Besides its natural beauty, Sudurpaschim is a significant hub for religious travellers as it consists of temples such as Ugratara, Tripura, Saileshwar and Badi Malika. Likewise, the region equally offers trekking experiences to its ventures, including the famous Sheyphoksundo Lake Trek, Upper Dolpo trek and Rara Lake Trek, all in its domain.


Above mentioned is the list of some unexplored destinations in Nepal. Suppose you want to explore Nepal in a distinct pattern without running into the risk of being scammed or taken advantage of by some corrupted systematic alignments. In that case, these places are your excellent choices since they are darted away from mainstream tourism destinations. Considering your well-being as our top priority, you will be able to perceive and digest the authenticity of Nepalese culture, hospitality and cordial nature of the locals in the most unadulterated form. At the same time, it will be an anecdote for explorers seeking a change of background scenery and location.