Kathmandu, also known as City of Temples stands at an elevation of approximately 1,400 metres (4,600 feet) above sea level in the bowl-shaped Kathmandu Valley of central Nepal. The valley is historically termed as "Nepal Mandala" and has been the home of Newar culture a cosmopolitan urban civilisation in the Himalayas foothills. The city was the royal capital of the Kingdom of Nepal and hosts palaces, mansions and gardens of the Nepalese aristocracy. Kathmandu is and has been for many years the centre of Nepal's history, art, culture and economy. It has a multiethnic population within a Hindu and Buddhist majority. It is also the home of the Newars. Religious and cultural festivities form a major part of the lives of people residing in Kathmandu.
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Walk the ‘Roof of the World’
Even if you aren’t a professional aiming for the 20-day Annapurna Circuit Trek or the original Everest Base Camp Trek, it is unthinkable to visit Nepal and not experience even a microcosm of its splendid natural terrain. The hotel arranges easy guided day hikes – with packed lunches - for guests to explore the beauty of Shivapuri Nagarjun National Park. Just a 20-minute drive from the hotel, the park – a fairy land of forests, ponds, streams and rare orchids - hosts 177 species of birds, monkeys, leopards and bears. An easy three-hour hike takes you to Jamacho peak for soul-stirring views of Langtang, Annapurna, Manaslu, Ganesh Himal and Kathmandu Valley.
Sundowners at Koko
Post 5 pm, the 10 th floor of Vivanta Kathmandu turns into one of the hippest venues in town. With next-gen, pop-art inspired Asian decor and a sensational menu of international vodkas, whiskeys, single malts, wines, inventive cocktails and small sharing plates of bistro-style food, you’re promised a decadent night of laughter and conversations. Lounge by the heated swimming pool and take in panoramic views of the city spread out below with the mighty Himalayas in the distance, and you’ll be partying with the stars in no time.
Champagne Saturday Brunch at Akari
Kathmandu’s fashionable locals and expats turn up in weekend mode for the legendary Saturday brunch at Akari, our rooftop modern Pan-Asian restaurant. The relaxed ambience with indoor and outdoor seating by the pool and breezy Himalayan views forms the perfect backdrop for our chefs to roll out a magnificent Asian spread redolent with Japanese, Cantonese, Burmese, Thai and Korean flavours. A show kitchen and live music add to the energy even as the bubbly in your glasses matches the mood of the hour.
Call of the Wild
Experience the tropical jungle life on a day trip to Chitwan National Park, located in the Terai Lowland, 150 kms from Kathmandu. The park is home to the One Horned Rhinoceros, Royal Bengal Tiger and Gharial Crocodile. Birding enthusiasts are thrilled with the astounding variety of feathered residents, soaring through the slender sal trees. The park allows guided walking safaris which gets you closer to the wildlife. An overnight stay at the swish Taj Meghauli Serai lodge ensures a breakfast overlooking bathing elephants in the Rapti River.
A Taste of Newar
The Newar people are the oldest inhabitants of the scenic Kathmandu Valley and custodians of a rich, indigenous culture with a unique cuisine that is little known outside Nepal. With an aim to introduce guests to this cuisine in an authentic ambience, Vivanta Kathmandu arranges for food tours to a Newar home in the city. Guests can observe and assist the host family with cooking the meal and later sit down together to enjoy a Newari feast featuring delicacies like gainda gudi (lentil curry), alu tama (potato and bamboo shoots curry), hakuchoila (spiced ground and char grilled buffalo meat) swanpuka (stuffed and fried buffalo lungs) served with baji (flattened rice) and juju dhau (sweetened creamy yogurt), all washed down with aila, home-brewed rice and millet liquor. This home-grown culinary experience is the real deal when it comes to understanding the local culture.
Yoga by the Pool
Stretched out in a warrior pose (virbhadrasana) on the pool deck just as the sun rises over the Kathmandu valley is one of the most sublime experiences in the city. An experienced Yoga instructor conducts daily sessions that takes guests through gentle stretching, postures for balance and muscle strength (asanas), sun salutations (suryanamaskar) and meditative, controlled breathing techniques (pranayama). Follow up with a couple of laps in the pool or strength training in the gym. As Kathmandu slowly comes to life, you’ll be physically and mentally refreshed, ready to take on a day in the majestic Himalayas.