Shopping excites all of us! Especially when we are on travel and need to get back home memoirs of the things we loved on our trip.
Nepal is a hub of shopping centres and literally shopper’s towns! Don’t believe that can be something as big as a shopper’s town or village?
Well, the land of mountains will prove you wrong with its attractive markets and glittering handicrafts, artefacts & more.
Today, we are going to take you through Namche Bazaar, which is not just a major tourist and shopping hub but is a starting point for expeditions to the Everest and other trekking destinations.
Originally a village, Namche Bazaar sits atop a crescent-shaped mountain offering a breath-taking glimpse of the Himalayan mountain range.
Namche is familiar as Kumbhu region’s unofficial capital and is a major staging point for trekkers and climbers heading to Everest Base Camp. It’s a challenging trek from the river to Namche Bazaar. For people getting there from Lukla, it is recommended that inexperienced trekkers complete their trek over a span of two days.
Tourist Tip: After reaching an altitude of 3,500 m, most trekkers experience altitude sickness forcing them to go back the next day. It is advisable that trekkers break their journey to find rest and equip themselves with medicines.
Namche Bazaar presents a wide variety of products ranging from trekking equipment to traditional items:
Here are some:
1) Handicrafts: Most of us love handicrafts, after all it depicts a particular place’s culture. Namche’s main street in bordered by Tibetian-run handicraft stall and stores. Most of the items are made in Kathmandu but do look out for locally-made items.
Tourist Tip: Watch out for anything special that has been brought in from Tibet
2) Books: Booklovers, you will find your paradise here. In front of the Namche hotel, you can find a store with a collection of good books. There are several other book outlets with both new and second hand books in the region.
3) Necessities: You can’t miss some things such as medicines, batteries, toiletries, trekking equipment and more on a trip. Namche is packed with stores that are a little expensive but offers a solution to all your emergency requirements.
Tourist Tip: Basic necessities except trekking equipment are available even further up the trail but with lesser variety and a higher price.
1) Namche Market: The village has a market where Sherpa from surrounding valleys display their agricultural products and electronic goods all the way from Kathmandu, on Saturday morning. This market presents a perfect picture of the Khumbu lifestyle. So get your camera reels stocked before you head out for a walk in the market!
2) Namche Bakery: Like every eatery has something special about itself, Namche Bakery is famous for excellent freshly-made pizzas and delicious coffee. The bakery also offers traditional Sherpa dishes including Rigi Kur and Tzen.
How to get there? The bakery is located a little further down from the main intersection.
3) Namche Hotel and Camp De Base: Trekking is definitely exhaustive and everyone needs a place to rest at the end of the day. Namche Hotel and Camp de Base present the perfect places to get a good night’s sleep after a tiring day. Both these places have are available at affordable prices.
How to get there? For Namche Hotel, follow the main shop-bordered street after entering the village. When you reach the cross-roads turn left, to walk-through the hotel entrance, beside the money changer.
For Camp de Base, continue to proceed straight from the intersection on the route that leads to stone stairs. They will take you to a large wooden door located on the right.
Tourist Trip: Camp de Base will always have hot water in the rooms even during power outages
4) Tibetan Medical Clinic: The best place to treat acute ailments with the help of natural formulas. For residents of the Campe de Base, it is just a matter of walking to the side door.
5) Speed Cyber Café & Book Shop: Tourists can visit the Speed Cyber Café and Book shop to avail the internet services including browsing and making international calls. Besides, book lovers and publishers can print and find books and second hand books.
Please Note: There are plenty other eateries, lodges and stores to cater to the needs of diverse tourists
1) Dumji Festival: In the month of June, Namche conducts an annual festival called Dumjee where the highly-respected Sherpas Lama’s achievements are remembered and honored. The first part of the celebration is marked with families visiting each other, while the latter half witnesses boisterous celebrations at the Namche Monastery. The incarnate Lama of Tengboche Monastery presides over the celebrations including lama dances, traditional Sherpa dances and an imitation ceremony.
2) KTM Valley Tour & Ox Cart Village Tour: Take these two tours to get a closer glimpse of Nepali culture and a never-before experience. Besides, this trekkers and tourists can choose from activities such as trekking, mountaineering, visiting & interacting with the local Sherpa families and mountain viewing.
Looking for some more adventure? You can check out some more sites/destinations around the Namche village:
1) Tengeboche: The Tengeboche Monastery is a famous one presenting a matchless view of the Mount Ama Dablam in the background. The monastery houses a spiritual leader known as Rinpoche who blesses tourists visiting the area. People visiting in October will get to see the colorful Mani Rimdu festival.
2) Gokyo Valley: Located towards the west of the Khumbu region, Gokyo is a serene valley with abundant pastures for yaks to graze. Besides, the pristine lakes add to the calming environment of the valley.
3) Khunde & Khumjung: Take a hike to these warm Sherpa villages to experience the hospitality of the Sherpas, taste cultural food and live the lifestyle of the Sherpas.
4) Sagarmatha: Most of the park is located above 3,000 m and is full of rugged terrain including deep gorges, glaciers and huge rocks. Nature lovers will get a chance to be amid more than 118 species of birds and other wildlife including snow leopard, red panda, Nepal’s national bird impeyan and much more.
The traditional village began as a trading point for yak cheese and butter. But with Sir Edmund Hillary and Tensing Norgay’s successful expedition to Everest in 1953, the quiet trading village became more of a tourist hotspot. Thousands of climbers and trekkers were wanting to create a record for themselves. Namche Bazaar received a flood of trekkers between the 60s and 70s and went onto serve their trekking needs by being the centre of all trekking destinations.
So when are you booking your tickets to Nepal? Is Namche Bazaar on your Nepal tour-bucket list?