१६ फाल्गुन २०८०, बुधबार | Wed Feb 28 2024

-Anupama Tiwari 

Our journey to the charming city of Pokhara unfolded with a road trip, starting at 7 a.m. and concluding at 6 p.m. The shift from our bustling routines to the tranquil beauty of Pokhara was a delightful visual retreat, offering different perspectives of the city. We boarded a bus from Kathmandu at 7 in the morning to Pokhara, and by 6 in the evening, we reached the Landmark Hotel in Pokhara.

Upon our arrival at Prithvi Chowk in Pokhara, a car promptly picked us up from Hotel Landmark. The warm welcome from the Landmark staff, complete with a refreshing drink, set a positive tone. We were then escorted to our room, and the cultural program during dinner added a unique touch to our experience. The evening concluded with songs and music, and we retreated to our room, reflecting on the journey from Kathmandu to Pokhara.

Taking a group photo in front of the Landmark Hotel where we stayed.

Hotel Landmark, our chosen abode, played a significant role in making our trip special. The friendly staff, comfy rooms, and tasty meals enhanced our family bonding, turning our trip into an unforgettable experience. The warm hospitality made us feel like we were staying with family. Each day, as we returned to the hotel, it felt like a comforting haven, adding an extra layer of joy to our family trip.

The next morning, a delightful buffet breakfast awaited us at the hotel from 6 am. Despite our busy schedule, we managed to squeeze in a photo session, capturing moments from the swimming pool to the gym hall. With breakfast behind us, we set out for the day, facilitated by the convenience of Landmark Hotel’s car.

Boaters on Phewa Lake.

Our family time in Pokhara was more than just exploration; it was a time of shared laughter and connection. Whether it was the joyous boat rides on Phewa Lake, the awe-inspiring views of mountain ranges, or the spiritual moments at temples, each experience became a thread weaving our family closer.

Phewa Lake, surrounded by majestic mountains, became our haven for boat adventures. We began with the serenity of wooden boats gliding peacefully across the lake. Later, we hopped on larger metal boats, exploring more corners. We also visited Barahi Temple, a serene spot between the waters. Riding the metal boat first and the traditional wooden one the next day added a charming sequence to our temple visit.

Talbarahi Temple is located between Himashrinkhala and the lake, visible from Phewa Lake.

Devi’s Fall, with its cascading waters, stood as a mesmerizing natural wonder, capturing our attention and leaving us in awe of Pokhara’s breathtaking landscape. The powerful beauty of the falls left us captivated, reminding us of the stunning aspects of Pokhara’s nature. Devi’s Falls also features areas where you can take pictures with idols dressed in various cultural costumes. We, too, captured some photographs at the site.

After visiting Davis Falls, inquiring about its features.

Our exploration of Gupteshwor Cave, a hidden treasure beneath the surface, unraveled with cool rock formations, adding an extra layer of excitement. The mysterious depths of the cave allowed us to appreciate the wonders crafted by nature.

My grandmother and I at Gupteshwar Cave.

Bindabasini Temple, radiating peaceful vibes, provided a serene escape. The rhythmic aarati, akin to Pashupatinath Temple’s, created a serene ambiance, offering a moment of spiritual connection. The shared similarities made the visit to the temple even more special.

Aarti at Bindabasini Temple.

Pumdikot offered a spiritual journey with a towering Shiva statue against the colossal Himalayas, leaving us humbled. My mom, caught in the excitement, clicked numerous photos, capturing every movement and creating a visual chronicle of our time there.

Shiva Temple in Pumdikot.

Hemja City treated us to breathtaking views of Annapurna, Dhaulagiri, and Machapuchare. My mom’s exclamations of excitement echoed her amazement, capturing the sheer beauty of the moment.

The visit to Seti River Dam provided a tranquil retreat. My mom, sharing her thoughts, mentioned how the Trishuli River Dam seemed even more captivating to her, highlighting the diverse opinions Pokhara’s beauty can evoke.

Capturing photos while traveling on a boat.

As we bid farewell to Pokhara at 11:20 am via a micro, reaching our destination at 9:30 am, we carried back not just memories but a sense of rejuvenation. The simplicity and beauty of Pokhara, combined with the comfort of Hotel Landmark, created a collection of experiences that we’ll cherish for a long time.

Traveling around Phewa Lake by riding a large boat.

My brother, my maternal grandmother, and I embarked on our first trip to Pokhara, driven by our curiosity to witness the scenic beauty we had only heard about from others. The actual experience of exploring Pokhara exceeded our expectations, proving to be more enjoyable than the tales we had heard. The two-day trip felt remarkably short.

Enjoying time with my sister in the hotel garden.

However, the dining experiences at the hotels we encountered for lunch and dinner on our way to and from Pokhara presented challenges. Limited healthy food options and high prices for less nutritious choices made it a bit challenging. The lack of food selection options added a rough edge to our trip, but the joy of visiting Pokhara and returning home safely overshadowed these inconveniences.

After boarding the wooden boat, I stood in front of the lake and took pictures.

Due to the ongoing road upgrading from Nagdhunga in Kathmandu to Naubisem in Dhading, and from Abukhairhani in Tanahun to Pokhara Metropolitan City in Kaski, there are issues with traffic jams in some areas, particularly on one-way roads. Additionally, in several locations, vehicles are reportedly endangering pedestrians. As a result, passengers are experiencing fatigue and discomfort. While infrastructure development is commendable, drivers have been contending with these challenges for several years. It appears imperative for the government to address delays in the project promptly, as the primary route to a significant tourist destination reflects negatively on the current situation.

Dust blowing on the Pokhara-Muglin road due to ongoing upgrading work.

(Anupama studies in Class 7 at Kathmandu Lincoln School, Manamaiju Kathmandu.)

प्रकाशित मिति : २ माघ २०८०, मंगलवार ११:१६