Top 4 Mountain Biking Trails in Nepal

  • Jan 25, 2023
  • Kabita Gurung
  • 1478

Nepal is a country full of geographical wonders and tremendous diversities full of raw and unraveled adventures along some of the most epic trails one has ever seen. The majestic mountains and tranquilizing landscapes fill you with the adrenaline pump just like an open book to the bikers who want to create their path, explore the raw adventure, and experience their freedom.

The country offers drastic variations within small geography. No wonder the trails showcase the beautiful scenery right from the start while you ride. The majestic views of the snow-clad Himalayas and breathtaking scenes of the landscapes along the way just fuel the adrenaline rush, a biker could ever dream of. The rich cultural variations as we proceed and the legendary hospitality of the local people adds the cherry on top. As they say, ride for the path, look for the warmth of people.

Get to get off your feet with us experiencing some of the rarest ethnic cultures and lifestyles along the most unique and epic trails, Nepal has to offer. It is always hard to decide which one to choose among the best. Here are some of the most popular and fast-growing trails in Nepal.

Table of Contents

Annapurna Circuit via Tilicho Lake Mountain Biking Tour

Annapurna Circuit is one of the most challenging trails that pass through a series of thrills and challenges. It starts at Bhulbhule and ends at Beni. This circuit has one of the epic trails that has been popular among bikers coming to Nepal. The trail passes through beautiful rice terraces, giant waterfalls, breathtaking hanging bridges, monasteries, and an ecstatic lake: Dhumba. Dramatic deep gorges, desolate high mountain passes, relaxing hot springs, Buddhist and Hindu temples, magical terrains, delightful villages, and at every turn a different view of the Annapurna ranges. And not to forget the Tilicho Lake (4919 M), one of the highest altitude lakes in the world.

The mountain scenery, seen at close quarters includes the Annapurna Massif (Annapurna I-IV), Dhaulagiri, Machhapuchhre, Manaslu, Gangapurna, Tilicho Peak, Pisang Peak, and Paungda Danda. You can only imagine passing through these awe-striking sceneries until you decide to experience this magic yourself along your path while you bike. Numerous other peaks of 6000-8000m in elevation rise from the Annapurna range.

The trail also passes through one of the most sacred places, Muktinath, and many more. The best part of this trail is that it covers a wide variety of climate zones from the tropics at 600 m from sea level to the arctic at 5416 m above sea level at the Thorong La pass. The experience of cultural variety from Hindu villages at the low foothills to the Tibetan culture of Manang Valley and lower Mustang has marked this trail as one of the best routes for a destination in Nepal. With the construction of the road, mountain biking is becoming popular, with Mustang, in particular, becoming one of the world's most popular mountain biking destinations also, featured on the world's legendary mountain biking rampages.

Difficulty: Challenging
Duration: 12-18 days
Best Time: Sep-Nov, Mar-May
Highest point: 5416 M

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Upper Mustang Mountain Biking Tour

It is one of the most classic and desired destinations in Nepal. This place was highlighted in the signatory biking movie of Redbull – Where the trail ends and Strength in number. Mustang is one of Nepal's many geographically pristine regions, located in the Northwest part of Nepal at an elevation of 3840 M. The geographical structure of the Mustang is composed of highlands and lowlands with plains, which makes it suitable for mountain cycling. You get to see Annapurna Ranges and Nilgiri Himal extended across the northern part while you bike alongside the unique fortress city of the wall of lo-Manthang.

The strong currents of the Kali Gandaki River that originate from Mustang carved the Dana Gorge, which is the deepest gorge in the world. The river drains the rocky soil and highlands of Mustang and flows towards the south of the country which is another major attraction in Nepal. The ancient fortress city of Lo-Manthang is a major attraction on this trail. The region was formerly the Kingdom of Lo, a remote and isolated region of the Nepalese Himalayas. Well, the Upper Mustang was a restricted demilitarized area until 1992 which makes it one of the most preserved regions in the world, and access to this trail requires a permit that makes it a bit more expensive, but believe me, the cost is worth it.

It is a rare privilege to go to the mystical lands of the upper mustang beyond the Himalayas. You get to experience the way of life of true mountain people, who for hundreds of years, had very little contact with the rest of Nepal and retained their rich cultural heritage. Here, the typical Tibetan culture has been preserved by the relative isolation of the region from the outside world, with a majority of the population still speaking traditional Tibetan languages. Biking in this mystical land is still a dream of many youngsters, both domestic and international, soaking in the magical land of unique walls and terrains.

Difficulty: Moderate to Challenging
Duration: 12-17 Days
Best Time: April-May-June, Sep-Oct, 
Highest point: 4230 M

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Jomsom Muktinath Mountain Biking Tour

Jomsom and Muktinath is the exact place where you would wanna be if you are looking for some specks of dirt and dust riding through the explicit trails while endeavoring the magical aura of the place. Jomsom is situated at an altitude of about 2700 M (8900 ft) and Muktinath at 3760 M in Gandaki Pradesh of western Nepal. The soaring peaks of Dhaulagiri and Nilgiri form a backdrop to the town straddling the Kali Gandaki River, which flows right through the center of Jomsom. Jomsom lies to the north of Pokhara in the Mustang district and is the main gateway to Upper Mustang.

Most of the trail forms a part of the Annapurna circuit and Annapurna foothill treks. The usual starting point is Jomsom. The trail passing through Jomsom follows the Kali Gandaki River which forms the deepest ravine in the world; on one side lies the Annapurna mountain range and on the other side is Dhaulagiri. The trail then goes all the way up to the Muktinath Temple, a holy site for Buddhists and Hindus. From there, the trail follows the Kali Gandaki River down to Beni, the ending point of the Jomsom Muktinath Mountain Biking Tour. 

Between Tatopani and Lete Khola, there is a dramatic change of scenery. Pine forests crowd in on the trail and the villages take on a quite different appearance. The layout of the villages and the design of the houses are unique to this area. The houses are designed to protect the inhabitants from the strong winds that blow up the valley every day from late morning onwards. Yes, the dunes, and valleys of Jomson, and the landscape equally amaze you like the popular gust of wind blowing through your face while you ride. Trust me, it’s a worship of nature with your biking skills. These winds are caused by differences in atmospheric pressure between the Tibetan plateau and the lower reaches of the valley.

With its diverse landscape, the area around Jomsom has the scenery of rocky cliffs and high peaks of the Himalayas without much presence of greenery, with the exception being forests of bright rhododendrons. The diverse landscape and culture found along this trekking route give great insight into the way of life of Nepali people of various ethnic groups.

Difficulty: Moderate
Duration: 8-12 Days 
Best Time: Sep-Nov, Mar-May
Highest point: 4190 M

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Kathmandu Valley Mountain Biking Tour

Whether you want to ride your bike through the forested trail of the hills surrounding the valley or through the temples and stupas of the city area or the village of different ethnic groups located on the outskirts of the valley, the Kathmandu Valley has everything to offer. If you are looking for diverse cultural, traditional, and lifestyle experiences within a limited geographical area, then biking through the Kathmandu valley is what you would want to go for.

In 2013, Kathmandu was ranked third among the top ten upcoming travel destinations in the world by TripAdvisor and ranked first in Asia. The city is considered the gateway to the Nepalese Himalayas and home to several world heritage sites: Durbar Square, Swayambhunath, Boudhanath, Pashupatinath, and many more. The rich culture of the valley and the hospitality of local people are capable of melting everybody's hearts with the mesmerizing aura of the valley.

If you would like to make it more adventurous, there are plenty of trails located in the hills that surround the valley. These trails take you away from the hustle and bustle of the busy city. You will ride through the alluring mixed forests and beautiful villages of different ethnic groups with amazing mountain sceneries from most of the parts.

Difficulty: Easy to Moderate
Duration: 1 day-12 Days
Best Time: All year except monsoon
Highest point: 2215 M

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