Monkeys & Momos
When I asked the kids what they liked most during our time in Kathmandu they both said momos and monkeys. The monkeys I expected, because nothing else has ever made Scott walk 12 km in 34 heat without complaining and I think it will be some time before it happens again. The kids love of Momos and how they embraced the local food was more unexpected, but it certainly helped keep our energy levels high to fully enjoy our time in Nepal.
Our top 5 things to do with kids in Kathmandu:
Kathmandu in August is 30-35 degrees hot, humid, dusty, busy, noisy full of beeping cars, hustling people, temples and stray dogs. Its interesting and exhausting and at the same time. Thats is why we decided that 1 sight per day and 3 days of sightseeing was enough during our time in Kathmandu. Here is a summary of the things we enjoyed most in here.
The Monkey Temple
The Monkey temple with a huge stupa lots of monkeys and a long staircase to climb.If you get here on foot like we did via the pilgrim walk from the Thamel area in Kathmandu you can avoid paying an entrance fee by simply taking the slightly hidden stairs on the far right. Once at the top you can enjoy the views, spin the prayer wheels, look around the sacred temple and get mesmerised by the monkeys.
Garden of Dreams
One of our favourite places was the Garden of Dreams. Its a bit pricy o get in, 60$, but its a nice space for some quality chilling out. This walled garden is like an oasis of peace and quiet in the otherwise overwhelming city of Kathmandu. Ingrid and Scott enjoyed having the freedom to run around the many ponds here as the streets were to busy and dangerous for them to do so. There is a restaurant/cafe inside but its very pricy so its a good idea to bring snacks and drinks with you.
Astrek climbing wall
We had looked up the local climbing wall up on google and were really looking forward to doing a bit of climbing. It was quite hard to find at first and the otherwise helpful locals and hotel staff had no idea where it was. After a bit of wondering, we finally found a little courtyard with 2 bouldering walls, a 14m top/lead wall and a little cafe. A few hours of sweating here gave us all an energy boost and lifted our spirits the way climbing always does.
You pay 250$ to climb during the week 450$ on a Saturday . If you want a belay you simply pay 100$ for 5 climbs.
Momos and other Nepali food
One of my worries before setting off on this trip was how the kids would get on with all the new types of foods and flavours. We quickly found that the kids were very adaptable and happy to try most of the things Paul and I ate. Momos was by far everyones favourite in Kathmandu. When you order Momos you get a plate of 10 steamed or fried vegetable or chicken dumplings. We all preferred the fried chicken ones that tasted just like most fried dumplings do. Other great food that we all enjoyed were chips/french fries , chicken soup, fried chicken and Nepali set dish called Thali.(see image) A Thali is also really good to share as someone will always come and offer to refill all the little bowls with curry, chicken, soup etc. At breakfast we all enjoyed pancakes and eggs in every shape an form as well as excellent coffee. The golden rule we quickly established is not to order western food as it rarely will live up to your expectations and to eat where and what the locals eat.
Monks by Boudhanath
This famous stupa was a 30 min taxi ride from our hotel. The courtyard surrounding it is rammed with little stalls and restaurants, but dont let these distract you too much. Our favourite part was walking up to the Monastery from the back end of the courtyard and meet to the young Monks that live there. You can also get a blessing & a golden scarf by a Monk at the top of one of the temples in return for a little deposit of 100$!