Thursday, June 7, 2012

One Day in Himalaya, When I Did Nothing

15 – 16 May 2011

Travel Mate/s

15/May/2011 New Delhi (India) - Kathmandu (Nepal) - Nagarkot (Nepal)
16/May/2011 Nagarkot - Kathmandu

Travel Notes
I entered Nepal from Kathmandu, departed from New Delhi by using budget Airline. It was started with..we almost miss our flight. Our flight schedule was 7.50 AM from Indira Gandhi International Airport; I arrived in airport around 7.30 AM. Fortunately we still allowed to check in somehow, then queuing for the security check for more than 15 minutes. Right, I did not get any exception. The walk itself from the security gate to boarding gate was almost 10 minutes by running!  Arrived in the aircraft, found that we still wait for another people. Pffiuuuuh! (Later on found out that in the aircraft, they announced name of passenger who were late. I guess we were a little bit famous back then ^_^)

Visa On Arrival

Tribhuvan International Airport (Kathmandu), remind me a lot of Jakarta airpot :)
Our flight arrived in Tribhuvan International Airport (Kathmandu) as scheduled. I directly went to Nagarkot - one of a city in Nepal which famous for its panoramic view of Himalaya, of course with hoping that I could see the mountain. It took about 40 to 45 minutes from the Airport to Nagarkot by taxi.
Our taxi from Kathmandu Airport (Tribhuvan) to Nagarkot

Our way up!
Reaching Nagarkot, turned out that the day was foggy. So the mountain, including Himalaya was hiding behind the fog. Moral of the story was: Other than good planning, travel for sure need good luck! :)

Lacking clear view of the mountain, we still able to see its siloutte. And the place still worth it if you seek for moment of peacefulness with yourself. And that was what Nian and I did. As a part time traveller whom depends on our vacation leave balance, usually we travel with tight itinerary and quite fast pace. And in that day in Nagarkot, when the hostel host offer us range activities, we just said no. We did not want to do anything. We just want to enjoy our moment there. Reading the book, sipping the cai (milk tea) while seeing the sunset..having lot of conversation and close the day with curled under the blanket.

For me it was so serene. Feeling secluded, supported by environment where there was no television even our mobile phone signal was bad. Only accompanied by sound of the wind howling in the afternoon and night. And in the morning waken up by the bird singing.
Our room

Our balcony - have 2 windows since we got corner room

Surroundings, The Himalayan was covered by fog

There were only the sound of wind, leaves and bird singing


Us and Cai (milk tea) waiting for the sunset
Sunset in Nagarkot

Our dinner

Our breakfast - Tibetan Bread (in Indonesia similar with Roti Bantal but it is bigger)

It is bad (and a little bit dissapointed) when you can not see the main attraction. But I think the most important thing that we should be able to cherish every moment of our travel. Other than those relaxing moments in Nagarkot, we also met with several stranger and had a really nice conversation with them. Discussing about country and from those conversation, realize that we don't know much about our country. Not a good ambassador, need more preparation on information about it :)

Last but not least we met famous actor (according to his own statement) as our hostel host, whom really friendly to us, sharing some stories about life of Nepal people.

Anyway, I took a picture of a photo which show the real actual scenery of Himalaya if the sky is clear. Hope it can intrigue you to go there, since I would someday :)
Our view on the scenery that day
The real scenery without fog

The Budget
Flight (New Delhi - Kathmandu - New Delhi)
We use SpiceJet - one of Indian's budget airline. The aircraft was ok; the service was not bad since they put personnel after the security checking. It was very useful for us who almost late.
How much: 8,475 Indian Rupee (include seat reservation); more or less 180 USD.

Accommodation & Meal
We stayed in Peaceful Cottage. I personally thought it was a perfect spot; located at the centre of Nagarkot Hill station. They also have 360 degree panoramic room, located in tower. We got corner room which has two sided window which offer 2 different views. It was clean enough. The meal was great! The most important thing that instead of having common room, they have common gigantic balcony to enjoy the surrounding.
How much: 31.5 USD per person for 1 night (total for 2 person 63 USD). The room rate itself 25 USD for 2 person back then.

Other transportation
We only used taxi both for Kathmandu to Nagarkot and Nagarkot to Kathmandu.
How much: 45 USD total

The Tips
Flight -> book the flight as soon as possible, you will get better rate if you book 3 months before compare to 2 months before etc. The first time I saw the ticket - which was 5 months before departing date, it was 5, 280 Indian Rupee (112 USD) per person. It is cheaper compare to actual rate I got 8,475 Indian Rupee (180 USD), which was booked 4 months before departing date.

Weather (very important!) -> do the research for best time to visit Nagarkot :) It said that October to March will be the best time to see Himalaya in a clear sky.

Peaceful Cottage:

“We wander for distraction, but we travel for fulfillment.” – Hilaire Belloc

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