• Apr 27, 2020
  • Rupak Parajuli

Nepal is an adventure lover's paradise. There are so many adventurous things you can do in Nepal that you will be spoilt for choice. Some of the most popular activities in Nepal are trekking, mountain biking, rock climbing, paragliding, white water rafting, and others.

Nepal is traditionally known for mountaineering and trekking. However, the advent of new trails has provided adventure seekers with an opportunity to bike the rugged trails at their own pace. If you are looking for something different and off the beat, then adventure cycling in the Himalayas might be the best choice for you. 

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The mountain biking trails in Nepal offers the riders with ultimate adventure and satisfaction. Burn your adrenaline by riding on the dirt tracks in the foothills of the Himalayas. The beautiful rugged roads provide the ultimate adrenaline rush desired by every mountain biker. Riding down dirt roads overlooking the beautiful snow-capped mountains is a thrilling experience. 

You could head out for the mountains where challenges are extreme, and the terrain is rough. The fitness level and stamina of the riders have to be at its peak to complete these trails. The rocky trails of the Upper Mustang and the Jomsom - Muktinath is perfect for multi-day trips in the region. 

If you want to go hardcore, you can bike along the majestic Annapurna Circuit Trek. The most extreme of them all is the Everest mountain bike trail. The trails take you to Tibet-Nepal border. You can then ride downhill, making your way through the panoramic passes. The trail also links to the trekking trails of the spectacular Everest base camp

Are you a beginner at mountain biking and do not wish to ride the tough terrains? Don't worry as there are many easy trails in and around the capital city of Kathmandu as well. The trails offer a short and casual mountain biking experience. You could also enjoy a sightseeing tour of the Kathmandu valley

Explore the old world charm of the city and learn about the culture and lifestyle of the local Newar people. The Newars are the original inhabitants of Kathmandu valley. They are quite famous for their unique and exotic food culture. Challenge yourself in the spectacular switchbacks, stunning downhills or the steep uphills. There are so many challenges along these trails that will test you to the core.

You will be staying in homely tea houses along the trail and camp in the open sky. There are numerous bike shops in Kathmandu that provide bike hire and rental facilities. If you are someone who loves challenges, there is nothing more adventurous than a thrilling mountain bike ride in the Himalayas.

Read further for the detailed description of some of the most popular trails for mountain biking in Nepal.

Upper Mustang Mountain Biking

The Upper Mustang mountain bike tour is the crown jewel of mountain biking tours in Nepal. This extreme biking tour passing through remote landscapes is one of the best biking routes in the world. The region provides you with a rewarding biking experience. 

The dusty trail starts from Pokhara and passes through the charming little villages of Kagbeni, Chele, and Syanboche. We arrive at the town of Lo Manthang, which is the entry point of the upper mustang region. The ancient kingdom of Lo Manthang was a no-entry zone until a few years ago. 

The region is now open for trekkers and mountain bikers. But the entry fee is on the higher range. The arid area has few solitary settlements along with some ancient Buddhist monuments and Gombas. Upper Mustang region has a desert-like landscape and barely receives any rainfall over the year. 

You can also explore the mysterious cave dwellings and the out of the world artistry of the famous Jhong cave. The downhill ride from Kagbeni to Tatopani is the highlight of the bike tour. We can explore the virgin lands of the region and the lifestyle of the locals. Hundreds of Chhortens and Monasteries provide cultural insight and influence of Tibetan culture. 

Known as "The Forbidden Kingdom", the upper mustang region is truly a heaven on earth. The beautiful landscapes are perfect for mountain biking conditions. Veteran riders have described the biking tour as heavenly. One needs to explore the area on their own to fully appreciate the region.

If you are an avid mountain biker and the upper mustang region is not on your 'bucket lists' then you are missing out a lot. This tour is a once in a lifetime experience will enthrall you and liven up your spirits. 

Annapurna Circuit Mountain Biking

Mountain biking along the foothills of the pristine Himalayas is every mountain biker's dream. The Annapurna circuit trail passes through the alpine rhododendron forests. You can also explore the charming villages and the terrace farmed hills of the region. 

You will also pass through the serene Thorong La Pass (5416m) and the emerald lake Tilicho. Tilicho lake is the highest placed lake in the world. You start your trek from Besi Sahar riding past the spectacular Marshyangdi valley. We descend through the spiritual center of Muktinath temple after crossing the Thorong La pass (5416m).

The bike trail moves along high elevations above 5000m under extreme weather conditions and dangerous paths. This mountain biking tour is not for the faint-hearted and amateurs. The development of the jeep track along the trails of the Annapurna Circuit has brought increased access to the region. 

The ride moves along some of nature's wonders in the world. The circuit circles the famous Annapurna massif of peaks above 6000m. This mountain biking trail passes through two distinct valleys separated by Annapurna range. The diverse geographical region has subtropical jungles, majestic cliffs, and pristine waterfalls, among others.

We also pass through charming little villages alongside Buddhist monasteries, temples, and gompas. Hundreds of Mani walls and prayer wheels welcome you along the trail. Natural hot water springs amidst the variety of flora and fauna will refresh you. The Annapurna region is an ideal trail for both trekking and mountain biking. But don't just believe in hearsay, Come and experience the tranquillity of the region on your own. 

Everest Mountain Biking 

The Everest mountain biking trails travel along the foothills of the highest mountain in the world, Mt. Everest (8848m). The biking tour passes through the rough terrain of the region. This life-changing journey demands extreme physical stamina and will power. 

The mountain bike tour in the Everest region starts from the Tibet-Nepal border. The trail then travels to the Kathmandu valley passing through the Sherpa settlements. The ride is technical and travels across tarmac roads more than 80 percent of the time. We ride through the dirt tracks of the green mountain villages.

The trail provides us with an opportunity to ride to the top of the Pikey Peak (3640m). The view along the trail is spectacular, with magnificent views of Mt. Everest and other snow-capped mountains. The Everest mountain bike trail features one of the longest downhill tracks in the entire country. 

You will pass through the stunning mountain villages and culturally explore the region. The rustic homestays and the incredible hospitality of the Sherpa people will enthrall you. The epic mountain biking journey in the Everest region is rewarding and adventurous at the same time. Experience the natural wonders of the world from the comfort of your two-wheelers.

Muktinath Mountain Biking 

The biking journey starts in the famous town of Jomsom(2700m). The windy town of Jomsom is the gateway to the Mustang region. The arid landscapes are ideal for mountain biking. The dirt track moves along the Kali Gandaki river banks. The track has both motorable roads and single tracks. 

We take a sharp uphill until we arrive at the temple of Muktinath. We will visit the spiritual hub of the region, the Muktinath temple. Muktinath temple is the religious center of both Buddhists and Hindu devotees. Muktinath temple is a popular pilgrimage site. According to sacred texts, the visit to Muktinath means you will attain moksha or salvation.

Muktinath is also an excellent viewpoint for the snow-capped mountains of Annapurna I, Nilgiri, Tukuche, and other high peaks above 8000m. The downhill ride from Muktinath to Marpha and then to Tatopani is the highlight of the trek. The ancient civilization of the Muktinath offers stunning insight into the culture and lifestyle of the local people.

The Marpha village is famous for its vast orchards of apple trees and yak herders. The juiciest apples get exported all over the country and abroad as well. The wine made from apples is also famous and open for tasting. In the village of Marpha, the human corpse get fed to the birds for prey.

You can relax at the hot springs of the Tatopani village and loosen up your muscles. Ride the pitch roads on your ride back to Pokhara or take a bus. The relaxing environment of the lakeside area in Pokhara welcomes you as the beautiful tour comes to an end. 

Kathmandu Valley Mountain Biking 

Kathmandu valley is the hub of rich cultural heritage and traditions. However, it does not mean that there are not any natural trails suited for mountain biking in the valley. Kathmandu is a valley surrounded by green hills. The Shivapuri danda, Jamacho, Champa Devi, Nagarjuna, Chandragiri, Phulchowki, and other hills surround the area.

There are vast paddy fields and traditional villages beyond the old world charm of the city. We start our ride from the pitched roads and move toward the dirt tracks of the hills. Various alternatives trails like the Kakani - Budhanilkantha, Jamacho, Mudkhu - Tokha, Nagarkot - Bhaktapur, Patan - Lakuri Bhanjyang, Phulchowki- Panauti, are also available within Kathmandu valley.

You can experience the rural lifestyle of the picturesque Newari villagers not far away from the capital city. The highest elevation point is just 2,200m and perfect for casual biking.

1. Mudkhu-Tokha Trail 

This Mudkhu - Tokha trail is Perfect for beginners as it is only half a day around 3 to 4 hours. The path is nearby the tourist hub of Thamel area in Kathmandu.

2. The Scar Road

 The scar road is a challenging trail near Kathmandu. We take a ride to Kakani (2,030 m) passing through the green hilly zigzag roads and arrive at Budhanilkantha. 

The tracks move along the curved serpentine roads. We return to the hotel after the ride of around 5 to 6 hours to complete.

3. Budhanilkantha-Kapan Trail 

This technical ride from Budhanilkantha to Kapan takes about 5 to 6 hours. The trail starts from Kathmandu and heads towards the pilgrimage of Budhanilkantha temple.

The riders then move towards Kapan and return to your hotel in Kathmandu. The route passes through the Kopan monastery. You will experience Spiritual awakening in the monastery. The religious chants, prayers, and meditation will liven up your spirits.

4. Jamacho Route 

The Jamacho route is a 21-km winding road that leads the cyclists to the top of Nagarjun Hill (2,128 m). The course lies within the protected area of Shivapuri National Park. Experience the lush wildlife and forests along the ride. The fantastic views of the snow-capped mountains is a bonus. The journey takes about 5 to 6 hours to complete. 

Mountain biking is a relatively new adventure sport in Nepal. The diverse Himalayan nation has numerous trails. The trails range from subtropical forests to the barren desert-like landscapes in the mountains. You will also pass through mystical ancient valleys in the hills. 

Are you an avid biker and want to ride the foothills of the pristine Himalayas? If your answer is yes, you don't have to look any further. Nepal is the perfect destination for you. There are numerous exciting trails all over the country. These tours are available at various price ranges. You can choose the best one based on your desire and skill level. 

Rupak Parajuli

Rupak Parajuli

He is a Travel Enthusiast and Writer, who mostly covers the guide to outdoor adventure in the Himalayas of Nepal. He can be your friendly trip planner. Feel free to reach out to him.

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