The Top 11 Popular Landmarks of Pokhara are ever enthralling to the domestic as well as international visitors. Pokhara, “the Lake city” in Nepal is surrounded by the beautiful high mountains and the panoramic range of high Himalayas. The village settlements and hill stations in the periphery of Pokhara are pristine. The various sites within the valley are tremendously beautiful at the one hand and on the other hand it is a trek junction for Annapurna Base Camp Trek including various other short hikes. Beyond natural beauty, Pokhara is also full of various popular landmarks. The top 11 of them are listed below.
1. Fewa Lake is a prominent landmark of Pokhara. It lies on the west corner of Pokhara valley. The lake covers an area of 4.4 sq km. The west bank of lake is surrounded by green rolling hill and thick forest and on the east of the lake there are hundredth of hotels, lodges, restaurants, travel and trekking offices, shops and other tourist related service centers. Besides, boating on Fewa Lake will be a thrilling moment once you gaze the rarely beautiful shadow of Machhpuchhre underneath of your boat. You can even cover this popular landmark of Pokhara if you happen to walk for Annapuran Circle Trek.
2. Devi’s Fall, the mystical sight of nature at the lower end of Fewa dam is also popular for its legend. The fall is named after the name of an ill fated tourist who was swept away by a sudden flow of Fewa Lake. The relaxing tourist did not know the sudden out flow of the water and swept way into the tunnel or craves and disappeared. Since then the fall has named as Devi’s fall and has become a popular site for the visitors.
3. Mahendra Cave, discovered in 1950, is one of the most popular visiting spot in Pokhara Nepal. 95% tourists go to visit the cave. It is in about 10 minutes drive from the heart of Pokhara city in the place named Batulechaur. The cave is rich in variety of rocks especially limestone and the rocks sparkle when light strikes on it. The stone that is dripping from the roof and covering the cave floor comes alive under the beams of the flashlights and increases the excitement of this dark adventure. As one of the darker sites in Nepal, the cave gives visitors the opportunity to embark on an adventure. There is still much of the cave that has not been explored and gives the cave an atmosphere of awe, when thinking of the mysterious, unknown territory that no man has yet been privileged to see. The cave is a wonderful creation of natural limestone. Nearby the Mahendra cave there is another cave named as bat cave where thousands of bat have made their home. Both caves are worth visiting.
4. Baharahi temple, the amazing site in Pokhara, is in the middle of Fewa Lake on a small island. It is not only a holly shrine of Hindu devotees but also a best spot to observe surrounding hill and settlements including towering and pointed peak of beautiful fishtail mountain. A five minute boat ride reaches the island. Religious functions like marriage, birth day celebration, wish fulfilling pooja are performed in the temple.
5. Seti George is geological wonder of Pokhara valley. Seti River has made awesome gorges in many parts of Pokhara. In some section the gorges goes more than 200 meter deep whereas the width is just about 20 meters. The best places to observe the wild feature of Seti River are K. I Sing Bridge, Mahendra Pool Bridge, Prithivi Chowk Bridge and some other small crossings of the valley.
6. World peace Pagoda, on the south west bank of Fewa Lake and on the top of Raniban, is a best site for day hike and birds eye view of entire Pokhara valley. One hour gentle trek to the top is also a best opportunity to experience local culture and tradition. Stupa site is a most favored site for internal and external tourists in Pokhara. Fewa Lake looks just underneath of the stupa and the towering fishtail mountain is one of the eye catching views from the site.
7. Buddhist Monastery in Pokhara is worth visiting site to experience Tibetan culture and tradition. While heading for Annapurna Sanctuary Trek, this site will be suitable place to visit in Pokhara. In Pokhara valley there are three Tibetan Buddhist monasteries in three corners east, south and north –west. They are established during the period of Tibetan refugee influx into the country in the time of Cultural Revolution in China.
8. Gupteshore cave is just the other end of Devi’s fall. Inside the cave a natural statue of lime stone has stood. People believe that the lime stone statue is a symbol of Lord Shiva. Today the cave is popular as a religious site of Hindu pilgrimages and in many religious occasion, devotees from all part of the country and even from India too visit the site. There is a small tunnel connecting Gupteshor cave to Devi’s fall.
9. Bindabasani Temple, located close to the Baglund Highway, is an oldest temple in Pokhara. The sacred temple of Goddess Bindabasini is a symbol of wish fulfilling Devi. Everyday hundreds of devotees visit the temple. The temple area is also a perfect centre for sightseeing. If you are planning for Jomsom Muktinath Trek-a pilgrimage trek in the Annapurna region, a short visit to the temple in Pokhara will be blissful. Furthermore, from the hilltop of the temple, visitors can capture the spectacular vistas of high Himalayas around Annapurna range.
10. Old Bazaar at the centre of Pokhara represents an ancient human settlement. Pokhara itself is a city of traditional home of Newari settlements. The bazaar has yet preserved its ancient buildings with their traditional design and architecture. Walking along the old Bazaar gives a glimpse of the ancient culture, tradition and architecture of Nepal that resemble ancient Kathmandu.
11. Museums in Pokhara are unavoidable landmarks that need to be visited if you are advancing for Annapurna Circuit Trek in Nepal. Annapurna Museum, located inside the P. N .Campus, is a Nepal’s only one butter fly museum. The museum has preserved more than 500 species of butterfly and many species of birds. It is popular among the scholars and researchers. Likewise, Pokhara Regional Cultural Museum, at the city centre, is the best site to observe and experience the culture and tradition of different ethnic communities of Nepal. Similarly, International Mountain museum is only one museum in the world to preserve mountaineering history and equipment used by different climbers since the mountaineering history began. Inside the museum compound there is a climbing wall and a replica of Mt. Manaslu Himal as well. Furthermore, Gorkha Memorial Museum keeps a collection of Gurkhas’ brave history as well as the equipment, dresses and medals associated with them. While roaming around the landmarks of Pokhara, just make a short visit at this site and know how Gurkhas were known to the world as the brave fighters. Besides, there is also a wide range collection of Nepalese army history and their dress and equipments.