Travelling within Kathmandu Valley

Posted on Feb 16, 2014 by TravelNews under Tour

Tags: Travelling ,Kathmandu ,Valley, Local

Travelling within Kathmandu Valley
#Routes #Kathmandu #Bhaktapur #Public #Commutes #Tribhuvan #International #Airport
Kathmandu-the capital city of Nepal, is often referred to the valley that makes up with the three districts namely Kathmandu, Bhaktapur and Lalitpur. Being the most developed and most populated area within Nepal, Kathmandu valley is equally rich in culture, tradition and natural heritages. The climate is pleasant all-round the year and the land is highly fertile for all types of tropical vegetation.  There are innumerable places worth visiting within Kathmandu valley. From UNESCO world heritage sites to antique museums, holy temples to view towers, national parks to fun parks, this around 570sq.kms area offers myriads of options for everyone.

Kathmandu has a 27km long ringroad which passes thorough all three districts. Ringroad is a major connection to all the places within the valley. All roads to the outskirts diverge out of this ringroad.

How to reach Kathmandu?

There are many routes to enter Kathmandu valley. Since the valley has surrounding hills, the entry points are limited and are mostly congested as they have been built on the hill slopes. The major ones are listed below.

1. Nagdhunga to Kathmandu

This is the major gateway to Kathmandu. Nagdhunga on the Prithivi Highway lies to the South-West of Kathmandu Valley. There’s a check post for all vehicles moving in and out of Kathmandu. The place is some 7 kms from Kalanki on the ringroad. As Kathmandu Valley is almost at the Center of the country, this is the main route followed by most of the vehicles moving to the East, West or Central areas of Nepal. The long route vehicles to the Eastern Nepal leave Kathmandu from Koteshwor while those moving to the Western Nepal can be found at the New Bus Park at Gongabu. One can embark on all vehicles leaving Kathmandu through Nagdhunga at Kalanki on the ring-road.

2. Chaimale/Farping to Kathmandu

This is the entry point for vehicles through Hetauda. Though most of the vehicles take the Narayanghat-Naubishe-Nagdhunga route, light vehicles like cars, TATA Sumo, Microbuses coming from Hetauda, Chandranigahapur, Birgunj take this route. The road is narrow and often swept away by landslides during the monsoons. Though the up gradation and maintenance is underway, this route is not much used by heavy vehicles. Pharping is around 15kms from Balkhu on the ringroad.

3.Sanga Bhanjyang to Kathmandu

All the vehicles moving to the North of Kathmandu take this route. Almost 20kms from Koteshwor, all vehicles from the Nepal-China border on Khasa, Tatopani take this route on the Arankio Highway. Also, there’s a vehicles enter Kathmandu from the Sindhuli-Bardibas road which diverses out of the Araniko Highway at Dhulikhel.  All long route vehicles passing through Sanga Bhanjyang can be boarded at Koteshwor on the ringroad.

4.Tribhuvan International Airport(TIA):

The only international airport of Nepal is on the ringroad itself. All those travelling through the TIA take on the ringroad to move anywhere within Kathmandu valley. This airport has both domestic as well as international flight connectivity on a regular basis to all parts of the country and major cities of Asia.

5.Balaju Bypass:

Vehicles to Rasuwa/Nuwakot entry Kathmandu via this point. A new trade route between Nepal and China is being established at Keyrung in Rasuwa. This place is almost a kilometer away from Machhapokhari on the ringroad.

Travelling within Kathmandu

Since Kathmandu has plenty of public vehicles, travelling within Kathmandu is quite easier once you find out the proper route of the destination. Public transport system is largely managed by the private sector which operates Buses, Micro Buses, Mini Buses, Tempos and Taxies.  It is very difficult to find a public commute after 8 PM in the evening within Kathmandu though taxies are available at the major areas within the cities. The following are the main stops for public commute within Kathmandu Valley

1.Old Bus Park:

Located at the heart of Kathmandu city, the old bus park is the hub for buses/microbuses moving to the outskirts of Kathmandu. Different route are numbered (like 21 for Kirtipur) and buses for the localities are allocated parking lot within the bus park. Buses to Kirtipur, Thankot, Kavrepalanchowk, Barabishe, Baneshwor, Pharping, Balaju, Maharajgung, Chabahil, Lagankhel areas can be found here.


Micro buses and Safa Tempos to Baneshwor, Balaju, Maharajgunj, Bansbari, Chabahil, Jorpati, Gongabu areas can be found at Sundhara in front of the Kathmandu Mall.


Microbuses and Tempos to Khokana, Baneshwor, Sanothimi, Thamel, Maharajgunj, Lagankhel, Chabahil areas can be found at Ratnapark which is almost 5 kms walk from Durbarmarg(Kingsway).

4.Bhaktapur Bus Park:

All buses to Bhaktapur/Nagarkot can be found at Bhaktapur Buspark in Bagbazar. This small buspark is located just a minute walk from Ratnapark on way to Putalisadak via Bagbazar.

5.New Bus Park:

The newly constructed Bus park at Gongabu is a hub for vehicles travelling around the ringroad of Kathmandu. All of the public  vehicles entering Kathmandu from the Central and Western Nepal have their final stop at the New Bus park, Gongabu. Often called the Gongabu bus park, Micro buses and Mini buses move throughout the ringroad from this hub. As this bus park is located on the ringroad, there’s a good availability of public commute to all the major areas of Kathmandu.

6.Lagankhel Buspark:

All the vehicles to the Godawari area can be found at Lagankhel Buspark. Located some 10kms from the Old Bus park of Kathmandu, the crowded bus park at Lagankhel offers vehicles to Godawari, Chapagaun, Lubhu, Bhaktapur, Kirtipur, Kalanki, Ratnapark areas. 

Micro Buses, Tempos in Kathmandu

There are micro buses moving in and out of the ringroad. Also numerous routes of these public commutes have been allocated within Kathmandu. Places like Koteshwor, Kalanki, Chabahil, Gongabu, Balaju, Satdobato, Ekantakuna on the ringroad are itself the start point for many microbuses/tempos to various places within and out of the ringroad. Though all the vehicles have their routes displayed on their windscreen, it is always better to ask the driver/conductor for information. The fare for all the public commutes is regulated by the Nepal Government. The minimum fare is 15 cent these days.  Senior citizens, students, physically disabled, families of Martyr get concession of 40% on all the public commute showing a valid ID card.
Apart from the Buses/Micro Bus/ Mini bus and Tempos, Taxi service is readily available to travel within the city area of Kathmandu.

Taxi Ride in Kathmandu 

All major bus stops, city centers and ringroad area have Taxi stands. The rate for Taxi is based on the government rates. There’s an android app (Taxi Fares Kathmandu) for finding out the taxi fare for travelling within Kathmandu. The rate as of now is 72cent per km though most of the taxi drivers ask for a fixed amount rather going on the meter.

Taxi Ride from International Airport in Nepal
For those entering Kathmandu through the Tribhuvan International Airport, recently new prepaid taxies have been introduced. These taxies are Euro-IV standard and charge around 5$ for 5 Kms.

Public Vehicle from Airport or Outside the Airport

Also, a public run bus service now can be embarked on just outside the airport arrival/departure hall. Sajha Bus starting from Kalanki-Kalimati-Tripureshwor-Thapathali-Maitighar-Baneshwor-Tinkune-Sinamangal-Airport and back the same way runs at a frequency of 15-30 minutes a bus and halts for 5 minutes at the fountain in front of the Terminal Building of TIA. So anyone going to or coming from the International Airport in Kathmandu can take the Sajha Bus with a nominal fare. These buses are well maintained and have been very popular with the Kathmanduites.

Sajha Bus Option in  Kathmandu

Sajha Bus operates in two routes listed below traversing through Kathmandu and Lalitpur.
Route No 1 : Lagankhel - Jawalakhel - Tripureswar - NAC - Kantipath - Teaching -  Maharajgunj - Basundhara and Gongabu New Bus Park and back same way.
 Route No  2 : Kalanki - Kalimati - Tripureswar - Maitighar - New Baneswar - Tinkune - Sinamangal - TIA Airport and back same way

So travelling within Kathmandu is easy and pretty cheap if you are well aware of the route to your destination. Taking a taxi is easier though not much faster and not as cheaper compared to the public buses, microbuses or tempos. so
Happy Travelling!!!

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