Exploring Kathmandu on Two Wheels: The 6 Best Mountain Biking Trails

Exploring Kathmandu on Two Wheels: The 6 Best Mountain Biking Trails
Photo by Sunil Chandra Sharma / Unsplash

Mountain biking has seen a surge in popularity in Kathmandu in recent years. What began as a small community of biking enthusiasts has now blossomed into a thriving scene of mountain biking (MTB) aficionados who spend their weekends exploring the valley's diverse trails. From adrenaline-pumping downhill and enduro tracks to serene trails that meander through the city's peaceful outskirts, Kathmandu is a haven for mountain bikers. Here are six of the best mountain biking trails in Kathmandu, suitable for riders of all skill levels.

1. Nagarkot: A Downhill Delight

Nagarkot, home of the Asian Enduro Series, is a favorite spot for downhill and enduro enthusiasts. But it's not just for the pros. Nagarkot boasts a plethora of trails suitable for riders of all levels. You can start your journey from the Nagarkot View Tower and ride downhill, encountering technical drops and leisurely trails. Alternatively, you can begin your journey from Bhaktapur and ride uphill to the Nagarkot View Tower. Be prepared for a muddy track during the monsoon and a dusty one during the dry season.

2. Shivapuri to Helipad: A Beginner's Paradise

This trail is perfect for beginners, featuring wide tracks and easy-to-follow routes. The trail starts from Budhanilkantha and heads southeast along a gravel road that takes you through Shivapuri heights all the way to the Helipad. For experienced riders seeking a challenge, there's the infamous Widow Maker, a steep, technical downhill section of the trail.

3. Godavari: A Diverse Trail Experience

Godavari is renowned for its steep and technical trails, perfect for downhill and enduro. The best downhill trails can be found on Phulchowki Hill. However, beginners can also enjoy a ride up to Godavari from Satdobato, with plenty of interesting places to visit along the way.

4. Hattiban: A Downhill Rider’s Paradise

Hattiban is a dream come true for downhill riders, with trails featuring big jumps, berms, and gaps. The trail starts from Hattiban Hill and descends all the way to Pharping. This popular spot is also the venue for the National Downhill Championship and many other downhill events.

5. Khokana to Bhainsepati: A Leisurely Ride

If you're looking for a slow and leisurely ride while enjoying the scenery, the Khokana to Bhainsepati trail is ideal. This trail mostly consists of a single track and is not suitable to ride during the monsoon. The trail spans from Bhainsepati, all the way to Sikali in Khokana, taking you through peaceful paddy fields and traditional towns.

6. Kakani to Helipad: A Day-Long Adventure

The Kakani to Helipad trail is perfect for a day-long ride. This trail is demanding as it will have you moving up and down throughout the trail. The trail takes you through the scenic route of Kakani and its surrounding forests to Shivapuri National Park to reach the Helipad.

Mountain biking in Kathmandu is not just about the ride; it's about the journey. It's about the thrill of the downhill, the challenge of the uphill, and the joy of exploring new trails. So, gear up, hop on your bike, and set off on an adventure on the trails of Kathmandu.

Keywords: mountain biking, Kathmandu, trails, downhill, enduro, Nagarkot, Shivapuri,Godavari, Hattiban, Khokana, Bhainsepati, Kakani, Helipad, Asian Enduro Series, Widow Maker, National Downhill Championship.

Additional Activities to Do During Your Mountain Biking Adventure

Mountain biking is not just about the ride; it's also about the experiences you have along the way. Here are some additional activities you can do during your mountain biking adventure in Kathmandu:

1. Enjoy the Scenery

Each trail offers unique and breathtaking views. From panoramic vistas of the Himalayas to serene views of paddy fields, there's always something beautiful to see. Don't forget to take a moment to stop and enjoy the scenery.

2. Interact with the Locals

These trails will take you through various villages and towns. Take the opportunity to interact with the locals and learn about their culture and way of life.

3. Try Local Cuisine

Nepal's cuisine is as diverse as its landscape. Don't miss the opportunity to try local dishes like dal bhat (lentil soup with rice), momo (dumplings), and gundruk (fermented leafy greens).

4. Photography

With stunning landscapes and vibrant local life, these trails offer plenty of photography opportunities. Capture the beauty of the trails, the charm of the villages, and the thrill of the ride.

5. Join a Group Ride

Gravity Nepal organizes Weekend Rides every Saturday, free of charge. Joining a group ride is a great way to meet fellow mountain biking enthusiasts and explore new trails.

Remember, mountain biking is about more than just the ride. It's about the journey, the experiences, and the memories you create along the way.