Shivapuri Day Hike- Best Hiking in Kathmandu
There are a handful of hiking trails in Kathmandu, thanks to many beautiful hilltops around the valley. Some trails are best for short day hikes, whereas most are for whole-day hiking. One such whole-day hiking in Kathmandu is the Shivapuri Day Hike. It starts from Budhanilkantha, ascends to Baghdwar, and takes you to the hilltop, Shivapuri Peak. The total length of the trail is 18 km, and it takes 6-7 hours to complete it, Budhanilkantha-Shivapuri Peak-Budhanilkantha.
Most sections of the hiking trail till Shivapuri Peak are either stone paved or thoroughly maintained with clear trail marks. With the entire section almost all ascending while hiking up, it often challenges you. Once you reach the top, you get awed by the panoramic view of the Langtang Mountain range and the entire Kathmandu valley.
Here, we’re presenting the itinerary, best time, precautions, fitness requirements, hiking gear you’ll need, and more related to Shivapuri Hill Hike.
Shivapuri Peak Hike: Entry points
In this article, we’re explaining everything from the Budhanilkantha side only.
There are two to three entry points to this hiking route. Hikers can start this hike from places like Tokha, Sundarijal, Chisapani, etc. However, Budhanilkantha to Shivapuri Hike is more popular due to the easy access of the entrance.
If you’re in Thamel or other parts of Kathmandu Valley, you have two options to reach the entry point. You can take a taxi directly from your hotel to the Shivapuri National Park entrance. Second, you can take a local bus/microbus from Ratnapark to Budhanilkantha. However, upon taking the bus, you must walk for 30 minutes from the bus stand to the entry point.
If you’re planning a Shivapuri Day Hike with us, we’ll send you a trekking guide to pick you up in a private vehicle from your hotel to the entry point. Also, while returning, our guide will drop you to the hotel in a private car.
There’s no compulsion to exit from the point you entered in Shivapuri. Suppose you enter from the Tokha’s side and wish to withdraw from Budhanilkantha; no one stops you. The only thing you’ll need is the entry permit. The officials at the exit may ask you for the license. So, we recommend keeping the entry permit if you exit from the parking area.
Shivapuri National Park Entry Permit & Fee
A Shivapuri National Park permit is necessary if you’re considering a Shivapuri Day hike. You can get these permits at every entry point. However, upon hiking with us, the hike fee you pay to us includes the cost of the entry permit.
While trekking, the national park entry fees are expensive for foreigners. However, in Shivapuri National Park, the entry fee for foreigners is just Rs. 1000 per person. For SAARC nationals, the entry fee is Rs. 600. Furthermore, the entry fee for Nepali citizens is just Rs. 100.
Shivapuri National Park Entry Fee (Nepalese Currency only)
Shivapuri Day Hike Itinerary- Breakdown of phases
We’ve divided this 6-7-hour all-day hike into four phases. Each phase highlights the major activities you’ll do during the hike.
Phase 1: Drive from your hotel to Shivapuri National Park Entrance at Budhanilkantha (30 minutes)
The hike starts at 8:30 am, with a drive from your hotel. We’ll send a licensed trek guide in a private vehicle to pick you up at your hotel. You’ll then take the drive to Shivapuri National Park entry at Budhanilkantha.
Your guide purchases the entry permit for you at the permit department.
From here, the Shivapuri Peak Hike begins.
Phase 2: Hike to Deurali/Baghdwar and Shivapuri Peak(2,732 meters, 3 hours)
From the national park entry point, you’ll hike for an hour on an off-road that leads to Nagi Gumba/Tarebhir. However, you’ll take the stone-paved trails that leads to the helipad from the section below in the photo.
From here, the route is almost uphill. There are some flat-like sections in between where you’ll stop for rehydration and rest.
Once you reach Baghdwar, you’ll stop for photographs and rehydration. In the meantime, your guide gives you information about the place, its cultural significance, and more.
From Baghdwar, you’ll hike for one hour to Shivapuri Peak. You’ll stop at the top for 30-40 minutes for sightseeing, lunch, and good rest.
Phase 3: Hike down to Budhanilkantha (3 hours)
From the top of Shivapuri Hill, you’ll hike down to Budhanilkantha. It’ll take 3 hours for medium-paced hikers. You’ll retrace the same route you hiked up to the peak.
Phase 4: Transfer to hotel in a private vehicle (30 minutes)
You’ll get a private vehicle hotel transfer from the Shivapuri National Park exit at Budhanilkantha.
After completing four phases, your whole day Shivapuri Day Hike ends.
Shivapuri Day Hike- Essential Information
You must be well aware of a few essentials before planning the hike to Shivapuri Peak.
You may think that reaching Shivapuri is just a day-long hiking in Kathmandu and is doable throughout the year. But, the weather can make a significant difference in the hike experience. Furthermore, the condition of the hiking route, the presence of bugs, and the cloudy outlook can ruin your 18 km-long hike.
July, August, and mid–September are not good times for Shivapuri Hike. More than half, around 9 km of trail remains slippery with monsoon rain. Additionally, with three long rainy months, the bushes grow thick, and bugs, mosquitoes, and leeches cause problems for hikers. Most importantly, the clouds and fog cover Shivapuri Peak top and even Kathmandu Valley during these months. Hence, you’ll miss the beautiful panoramic view of Kathmandu Valley and the Langtang mountain range.
Spring, Autumn, and Winter are absolute periods for this hike. The rhododendron blossom in Spring at Shivapuri lures hundreds of Nepali youths every weekend. Also, the occasional snowfall at Shivapuri Hilltop in winter attracts hikers. Moreover, the autumn colours and colourful plant litter make this hike wonderful.
The best weather, temperature, and visibility during these months make the hike experience wonderful. You’ll see snow-capped Langtang Lirung, Ganesh Himal, Dorje Lhakpa, and other panoramic mountains. Furthermore, the entire Kathmandu valley and nearby hilltops remain one to watch.
Even solo, Shivapuri Day Hike is a straightforward hike if you do it right. However, taking a licensed trekking guide ensures utmost safety throughout the day. Alongside guiding, your trek guide will be a companion for the hike.
If you’re considering this hike in months like June, July, and August, you must be very careful. It would help if you planned this hike on a clear weather day. Thunderstorms and heavy rain cause issues and can put you at significant risk.
Moreover, it’s better to carry bug-repellent creams while hiking here. There’s a high chance of getting bitten by bugs even while wearing a full-sleeved t-shirt.
Another precaution is to watch out for wild animals. This national park has tigers, leopards, and other dangerous wild animals. There’s a meagre chance of encountering wild animals. But it’s always best to be cautious.
For Shivapuri Day Hike, you’ll need a few proper hiking gear. Cap/Hat, sunglass, full-sleeve t-shirt, Windstopper, hiking pants, and decent hiking boots are necessary. Furthermore, please carry a 1-2 litre drinking water bottle. Make sure that you have a proper hiking bag as well, not more than 20 litres.
If you have these gears, there’s no need to buy any. However, there are only so many good stores for buying hiking gear in Kathmandu. One of them is Dolpo Gears, our official gear partner.
You must be physically fit to reach Shivapuri Peak and return. If you have a hiking experience, reaching the top can be easy. Thus, you must be physically suitable for this hike.
Before planning this hike, We recommend doing exercises like cardio, swimming, and even mini–hiking. It’s not that you can’t reach the top and complete the hike. It’s just that it will be challenging for unfit people.
Looking for a Shivapuri Day Hike?
Hiking in Kathmandu, like Shivapuri Peak Hike and Champadevi Hike, is worth 6-7 hours. The well-maintained and marked routes, stone paved sections, vantage points, and rewarding panorama of mountain and valley make these day hikes the favourite of many.
If you’re in Nepal and looking for the best hiking trail in Kathmandu, there’s no other like Shivapuri Hill. It’s near Kathmandu Valley and is ideal for escaping a day of hectic hustling and bustling. The hike itself is easy, scenic, and rewarding. Also, the serenity of Shivapuri offers calmness.
You can write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org to book your appointment for the guided Shivapuri Day Hike. Also, you can write to us on any topics of interest, whether trekking or tours. You can also write to us on WhatsApp at +9779818553880. We’ll reply to your queries as soon as possible with the best solutions.