Relaxing in Pokhara with kids

Pokhara is a well known town in the Himalayas renowned as the stepping stone for your first Himalayan Trek and also as a place to chill out and relax in, post trekking!  We visited Pokhara with kids in September 2018, just at the start of the trekking season and it was still very warm!!

Pokhara is no longer a small town by the lake, it has grown massively from the last time that Keith visited and stretches back quite a way.

The town isn’t what you would expect either.

There are a few activities to keep you entertained but for the most part it is somewhere to just rest after trekking.  

But the primary focus of Pokhara appears to be eating and drinking. When you are trekking the primary diet is noodles or Dal Bhat so when returning to Pokhara the restaurants cater to the western taste with Pizza, Pastas, Mexican, Indian, Chinese and so much more.  Foodie Heaven!

Places to stay in Pokhara

We were put in touch, via the Pahar Trust, with Adams Hotel.  The hotel is directly based in central Pokhara directly in central lakeside.  An ideal location to explore Pokhara.

The hotel is run by Mr Adam and his very informative team.  He provided both a warm and welcoming hotel (with huge family room) and a wealth of information to help us on our family adventure.

 

We had lovely view from the roof!

Places to eat in Pokhara

Stayed for 2 days prior and 5 days post trek so had the opportunity to eat out on a few occasions. And much to the delight of the boys the choices were endless and tasty!

We visited the Punjab Indian restaurant on several occasions for lunch. It was quick, cheap and easy and had masala dosas which Keith was pleased with!

Lemon tree – after reading trip advisor reviews we visited this restaurant with its elevated position over the town. Unfortunately it wasn’t as good as we had hoped. It was ok, just lacking in flavour. The boys had pizzas and I had a pasta. But it did have a nice balcony overlooking the street.

Ethan had his birthday while in Sikles, and we promised him he could have his pick of dinner. Obviously it was pizza! We visited godfathers pizzeria (there are 2, we visited the one with views over the lake, which also had a pool table).  It again had good reviews, but this time didn’t disappoint. It may have been the few sundowner beers before hand 😉

On return from our trek we treated our guide Hem and our porter to a lunch out to say thank you. They took us to Byanjan which was a much more upmarket restaurant. It was light and airy with lovely views over to fewa lake.  The food was ok, but pricier than we were used to.

 

Things to do in Pokhara

Trekking – first and foremost Pokhara is all about trekking. It’s the base or starting point of many of the regular routes.  Although you don’t actually start walking from Pokhara, it’s where the jeeps tend to come and collect you.

We organised and set off for our 5 day trek to Sikles village from here. Check out how we got on here.

Then afterwards….

Time to relax!!! and there’s no better place to be. The lake is dotted with bars serving cold beers and snacks as a perfect afternoon chill out or early sundowner.

There are plenty of ‘spa’ and massage places ready to run away your aches and pains if you need it.

But once you have your energy back they’d more energetic activities, such as:

Paragliding. Come lunchtime if you look up you will see the sky littered with tiny bright dots of colour as paragliders work the thermals. We didn’t partake (namely because I like my feet on the ground and Keith is a paraglider and was hrumphing he was out of practice 🙄).  But there are lots of companies offering tandem flights if you want to give it a go.

Boating on fewa lake – lots of areas to hire a rowing boat, paddle boat or even kayaks on Fewa lake.  We chose to hire a rowing boat one day and hear over to the world stupa. It took us about 40 mins, with the boys helping, to get across.

Alternatively you can pay to have someone row you if you don’t fancy doing the hard work!

Walk up world peace stupa – directly opposite Pokhara you can see the little inlet that most people row to.

 

From there you can walk up to the top of the hill.

There are a couple of refreshment stalls lower down so grab water or drinks of you need them. It’s all up hill, but not too challenging.  We passed lots of people on the route.

When you reach the top there are more eateries, but we just wandered around and took on the amazing view. You can see just how spread out Pokhara is.

Biking – there were a few places that were offering mountain bikes for hire. They mostly looked like adult bikes so not suitable for younger children.

Rafting – there were several places advertising rafting nearby. But we just didn’t have the energy to even think about being active after the trek! However, from what we saw that it was only 30 minutes away and was around $45. Not sure what levels it was, but it’s an option for the more amongst you!

 

Helicopter and microlight rides – if you have money to burn there are options to take a microlight or helicopter ride. But our budget was definitely not stretching to this luxury.

Conclusion

I loved pokhara for its chilled out vibe. It is definitely worth stopping for a few days after your trek to relax by the land and explore the town.

We probably stayed longer than we need to, but when you find somewhere that you feel really comfortable in – it’s hard to leave!

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