Nepal: Drive to Memory Lane Part 3

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Holiday-ing Pokhara

#NotSOsolewandering #JustChillCheap

So ten days of silence, what to do? Time to take things slow and practice meditation, at least not ten hours of sitting. Where to? I know, touristy places are not my thing, but who can resist this trekking town? Nah, I mean just trying to trek again to get a closer look of the Himalayas. By this time, my Nepali Visa was about to expire. Hehehe, just another reason to visit Pokhara (this town has immigration office for visa extension, more relax place than the Kathmandu office). It was also a perfect getaway to wait for my Indian visa approval.

 

So Pokhara is just 8 hours away from Kathmandu in a winding and rough journey accompanied by scenic view of the countryside. Upon arrival at the bus station (tourist bus station is located near the airport and Fewa Lake, whereas the local buses only stop at the town center), there are auto rickshaws and a bus that goes farther to the mountainside that pass through Fewa Lake and the backpacker area. Or if you are up for an adventure, go for a walk, like we did.

View from Angel Hotel, 800meters from the tourist bus station.

View from Angel Hotel, 800meters from the tourist bus station.

The plan was to spend a weekend but we ended up staying for a week?! We did not even trek,lol! What happened? We just fell in love with Pokhara and each other, lol! We as in Me, Ville and Yan Ga. Yes we.

FEWA LAKE

Nothing beats the morning walk or sunset stroll in this place. Just bring your drink and sit down, watch people and time go by. No swimming allowed. But we were not contented, we decided to take a day to cross the other side to see the World Peace Pagoda. Which meant paddling our own boat and a little bit of trek.

Sunset at Fewa Lake. Not in the picture...San Mig Beer

Sunset at Fewa Lake. Not in the picture…San Mig Beer

Our Captain ready to take us to the otherside

Our Captain ready to take us to the other side

So we rented a boat around 500 Rupees for half-day use at the south side of the lake, which meant paddling all the way up for almost 20-30 minutes,normal speed. No problem, our captain took control, and we (the girls) just sat back and relaxed. Coming back though was not easy. It was another adventure. We were about to cross back when it started raining. I mean thunderstorm. The calm lake became a ferocious beast, with waves trying to devour us. Yan Ga, being a non swimmer, was agitated. The waves were bigger and stronger and I felt bad. I was starting to worry…about my GoPro, lol! Anyway, I had to step up and help Capt Ville to paddle, to use the waves to our advantage (thank you surfing and diving for this). It was not easy, every paddle came with a prayer. I mean, people can rescue us, but no way, there’s no way we were allowing the waves to beat us. Seated in the front, while Ville was at the back, I found myself pouring all the courage and strength to every paddle and shout “to the right, or now left, paddle hard.” It was exhilarating but, hey, we made it to the shore, just next to the original boat parking. Whew, that was close.Or not.

the Calmness before the storm

the Calmness before the storm

WORLD PEACE PAGODA

After 30 minutes of paddling, we parked at the foot of the hill where the short trek starts. It was a thirty minute steep climb passing through the forests and a cafe. The view was stunning in with its pure simplicity. But the walk was just not for me, hahaha! By this time, I have convinced my teammates that trekking was not for me.

Fewa Lake view half way to the World Peace Pagoda

Fewa Lake view half way to the World Peace Pagoda

We were just so unlucky that we came just before the thunderstorm. It was cloudy but the pagoda itself showed important facts about the life of Siddharta Gautama Buddha. A good place for a short meditation.

World Peace Pagoda View Point

World Peace Pagoda View Point

WORLD PEACE PAGODA

WORLD PEACE PAGODA

the cloudy trek to the pagoda

the cloudy trek to the pagoda

SARANGKOT

Okay fine, being a team player, I have decided to do a one day trek with Ville and Yan Ga. Just one day, no more. As advised by our hotel, this trail was the easiest, easier than the World Peace Pagoda and no chance to get lost. The reward of this trek was a view of the whole town with the Himalayas. So I had to go. I went.

Start of the trail, Fewa Lake

Start of the trail, Fewa Lake

End of Fewa Lake

End of Fewa Lake

The trail started at the Fewa lake going north. Just follow the lake and then ask around. Yeah, we just did what the hotel staff said. Until we met a Nepali who was running an orphanage and offered us ride to see his place and promised to give us the short cut direction to Sarangkot. We gave in, only because of the orphanage. We spent time playing with the kids as well as helping generate ideas for fund raising to support the education of the children.

View from the orphanage

View from the orphanage

A cute student at the orphanage

A cute student at the orphanage

the prabhat orphanage

the prabhat orphanage (if interested to help, please zoom the picture for the contact details. Donations are very much appreciated.

After a few hours, it was time to bid farewell to our friends. And started a “short” trek. But who said it was short? We ended up in local villages with only students spoke English. What a way to get lost in a hot afternoon with no lunch. We just walked towards wherever the locals told us to.

Walk to nowhere

Walk to nowhere (photo by: VK)

The trek included walking through the gates of the local villages, who helped us

The trek included walking through the gates of the local villages, who helped us. Photo by VK

Although it was a fun trail, I would say, it’s not for everyone. It was still a steep climb to 1592 meters high. Nonetheless, worth the pain. It was such a relief to see how simple the life of the villagers. They gave us drinking water and directions with a pure smile. It was almost late afternoon when we had a glimpse of the destination.

Almost there Photo by: VK

Almost there
Photo by: VK

It was yet again another unlucky day as the Himalayas were too shy for our cameras. The clouds were too much but then again the view of Nepal towns were enough to quench our thirsty eyes. No sunset view either. But we were still happy we made it alive and hungry.

Sarangkot View point

Sarangkot View point

Common you Himalayas come out!

Common you Himalayas come out!

Yan Ga with sincere happiness

Yan Ga with sincere happiness

And so after so much picture-taking and late lunch,we had to rush going back. By this time we were exhausted and decided to take a bus. Too late though, the last bus just left. What a luck! So we started walking going down and met another tourist. I was so curious about the trail back, so I asked him. Wow he answered with weird expression, 1.5 hours to reach where we were which was just 200 meters below the view-point (from Fewa Lake). Short cut it was. Because of this, I tried to convince my friends to trek down. Both declined and decided to hire a taxi instead (10USD). No way! It was then an old pick up truck passed by and I immediately flagged it to ask if we can hitch. The driver agreed as long as we pay 100 (1USD) rupees each and we will stay at the back of the truck. Both disagreed but I jumped in already, lol! Not bad for a one dollar bumpy and fast ride 🙂

Hold on tight!

Hold on tight!

So what happened to the other days we spent in Pokhara? Well, we just walked around the lake, relaxed and played. Yes to playing like kiddos. It was a shame that we were not able to see other beautiful places nearby. We just loved waking up to the cold breeze, ate and just chill. We were not bored at all. Sometimes we would walk to the end of the lake and ended up shopping lol. You know, hemp stuff!

at a nearby park

at a nearby park

kiddo

kiddo

okay we're just kids trying to be adults lol

okay we’re just kids trying to be adults lol

oh another playmate

oh another playmate

A week in this lovely place and we did not even do much because we were too busy being happy lol! In its simplest form. Sometimes, wandering is not about the journey nor the destination, it’s the moment. Every breathing moment may it be alone or with company.

Team Pokhara Photo by: VK

Team Pokhara
Photo by: VK

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About helene limguangco

former banker who packed her bag and left the country to chase her adventure around Asia with nothing but Faith and a little savings. Water enthusiast but non swimmer. a certified frugal tripper who can walk 15km with a 15kg backpack and can sleep anywhere with a yoga mat and sarong.

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