As we arrived back into our hotel in Pokhara after our 10 day hike the hotel reception handed us two big trash bags to put all our clothes in to be washed. As our main luggage was still in Kathmandu MK and I were room bound until we got our clean clothes back. We both had the best showers of our lives and ordered a lot of room service and just relaxed in the room.
It did feel strange to not be in the mountains, not have Raju there and to not be just walking all day every day. There where a few things we wanted to check out in Pokhara. Our first stop was the local spa!
Jiva Cafe & Spa is in the town center of Pokara just off the shore from the lake. There is a house used for the treatments and then a huge colourful garden filled with tables and chairs for you to relax in. There is also a cafe where you can get a bite to eat and sit back and relax. I had a facial and MK had a massage. After 10 days of not showering and roughing it both treatments went down a storm! We met the owner of the spa who was a lady from Ireland who visited Pokara years ago and then never left. It was pretty cool to hear her speaking Nepalese with her Irish accent.
We did a lot of shopping in Pokhara as it had a more relaxed vibe then Kathmandu. There are a lot of shops filled with clothes, bags and hats. I went into a shop called Woven looking for a few presents to take home. The shop was small but packed with these beautiful bags. I bought a few bags and as I was checking out at the register the lady explained to me all the bags where fair trade products and made by women in Pokhara. She also popped a leaflet into my bag. Back in the hotel room I did decide I would like to pay a visit to one of the organizations behind the bags the Womens Skilled Development Organization.
The next day I had asked for a driver to take us to the Organizations Office. It was a bit hard to find but our driver finally located the street we needed to be on. When we pulled up a lot of women came out to see what was happening. I went into the office and asked if it was possible to have a tour. A young girl who spoke English said she would take me around. We started off at the start of the process where wool is cleaned and dyed. To see how the ladies created these bags from start to finish was mind blowing. I was taken into the classrooms where they taught skills and experimented with new ideas. At the end of the tour I met the founder who created all of what I had just seen. A lot of the women at WSDO were in domestic abuse relationships, trapped in rural communities with no way out. WSDO had provided the ladies with a skill, career and fair wages to make them independent and escape dangerous living situations. We purchased a few more items from the factory shop before we headed back to the hotel.
MK went off one morning to do the paragliding. I believe he booked it through a paragliding shop on the main street I cant remember the name. They were picked up from the shop where you book it in and taken to the top of a huge hill that looks down on Pokhara. I have the biggest fear of heights so I went into town and grabbed a coffee and watched them glide back down. I do think health and safety is different in Nepal. MK did arrive back down safely but did say it seemed a little relaxed. I would do your own research like everything else before booking to ensure you are comfortable with the company you choose.
The last place we visited was called World Peace Pagoda. It is a huge stunning monument at the top of a hill that gives you insane views of the lake and town below. It is a Buddhist monument where you walk around a certain way and remain quiet. The views are worth going up for. The monument itself is also beautiful. The humidity up there on the day we went was crazy but it was well worth the sweat, you can see the Himalayan mountain in the background.
We ate and drank at a few places in Pokhara. The places we enjoyed the most are listed below.
Irish Pub Pokhara – Fun atmosphere and live music. We only had a few drinks here and they even did a pretty good espresso martini. It was a very fun bar with the live music.
OR2K – There is one in Kathmandu as well. We ate in both locations and we preferred the one in Pokhara. They do movie nights and trivia its a fun place to grab dinner always a welcoming busy atmosphere.
Roadhouse Pokhara – If you are craving western food this place has it all. It is located on the side of the lake as well just next to a nice shopping centre.
To be honest you are never far from good food in this country…
Our 5 days in Pokhara flew by and before we knew it we were at the airport flying back to Kathmandu for our final 3 days.