Nepal is open throughout the year for visitors from all over the world. Each of the four seasons of Nepal offer something unique and wonderful for you to experience.
So, the best time to visit Nepal is not confined to any month or season. Depending on what you want to see or where you want to go, you can choose the best time.
Visited for a wide range of activities, Nepal has something for everyone. This includes treks, exploration of flora, fauna, and culture among many others.
The best time to visit Nepal can depend on a variety of factors. To find the answer for you, keep on reading.
Best Seasons to Visit Nepal
The four seasons of Nepal are Spring, Summer, Autumn, and Winter. Each season lasts around 3 months. Depending on what weather conditions and temperatures you like for your visit, you can choose the best time to visit Nepal.
Nepal has a diverse landscape and altitude. Hence, there are variations in weather conditions and temperatures within the same season.
Spring (March, April, May)
The spring months of Nepal offer warm, long days with plenty of sunlight. These months also offer clear blue skies promising great visibility of the surrounding landscapes.
In the lower regions of Nepal, you can enjoy the blooms of local flora. In some regions, you can enjoy entire forests of colorful blossoms of flowers which fill the air with flowery scents.
The average daytime temperatures in Kathmandu and the hilly regions of Nepal are 8-29° C.
Early spring also sees some rainfall. The average rainfall during spring is 10 – 70 mm.
During early spring or March, the nights and early mornings are colder than the days. Make sure to pack some warm clothes if you choose to visit during this month.
Summer (June, July, August)
Summer is the hottest season of Nepal. These months see average daily temperatures of 17 – 29°C in Kathmandu. The lower regions of Nepal are hotter. Even in the high altitudes, the temperatures rarely drop below zero.
The summer months of Nepal are also the monsoon months. These months get the most rainfall. The average rainfall in Kathmandu is 129-239 mm within these 3 months.
Yet, you can enjoy the bountiful nature during this season. The landscape views are quite enticing after the rainfall.
Autumn (September, October, November)
Autumn is considered the best time to visit Nepal as this season offers clear skies, little to no rain and amazing visibility.
The weather conditions even in the high altitudes are more stable. You can enjoy moderate daily temperatures of 7 – 19° C in Kathmandu. The days are long and warm. During this time, you will have lesser risks of snowfall and avalanches.
But, as autumn is the peak season, you may find most travel destinations packed with travelers.
Winter (December, January, February)
Winter in Nepal can be cloudy, foggy and cold. In Kathmandu, the daily temperatures range between a cool 2 – 11° C. In the higher altitudes, it is rare to see temperatures above 0 ° C.
This season sees very little to no rainfall with an average rainfall of only 0 – 8 mm. Yet the higher altitudes do enjoy heavy bouts of snowfall. In January of 2019, the surrounding regions of Kathmandu also saw light snowfall after 12 years.
The weather is quite unpredictable during this season. But the lowlands of Nepal enjoy moderate temperatures during winter. These include popular destinations like Chitwan and Bardia National Parks. These are gorgeous in winter.
Purpose of Your Visit to Nepal
Nepal is one of the most visited nations of Asia. Every visitor here has their own reasons and expectations from their visits. Depending on your own, you can choose the best time to visit Nepal as well.
Trekking in Nepal is one of the most popular reasons to visit Nepal. With some of the widest range of trek duration, destinations, and trails, trekking is widely popular in Nepal.
For most treks in Nepal, the local spring and autumn seasons are the best seasons. These seasons offer more stable weather conditions along with moderate temperatures. With reduced risks in safety, these seasons also offer amazing visibility of the Himalayas. These seasons are the best time for climbing mountains and trekking peaks as well as crossing high passes.
Spring offer better chances to witness the colorful and bountiful blossoms of local flora. It is also a great time to spot wildlife in the trekking regions.
May of Spring is also ideal for climbs to some of the highest peaks in the world including Mt. Everest. Hence, it is a great month to see expeditions.
Autumn is better for enjoying festivals. Some of the biggest festivals of the trek regions occur during this season.
Yet, these seasons also see a large number of crowds on the trails. So, if you are looking to avoid the crowds in these seasons, try some of the lesser trekked regions of Nepal. These can be the restricted region treks of Nepal as well as the new trekking trails.
For a more wild and adventurous trek, you can try trekking during other two seasons of Nepal. If you want to trek in winter, you can choose treks in the lower altitudes which do not usually get affected by snow or cold.
While if you are planning to trek in Nepal in monsoon months, you can choose to trek in rain-shadow areas that do not get affected by the monsoon rain.
Jungle Wildlife Tours
Wildlife tours, jungle safaris along with bird watching are all possible in Nepal. These activities take you to the lowlands (terai) of Nepal.
For this tour, you can visit different national parks of Nepal. These include Chitwan National Park, Bardia National Park, Khaptad National Park. You can also go hunting in Dhorpatan Hunting Reserve.
In these tours, you can travel to lush forests, lakes, wetlands. On the way, bird watching, sightseeing are a great bonus for your tour. You can also see different species of flora and fauna.
October to May is great months for jungle safaris. These months offer the best chances to spot some of the rare and exotic wildlife in Nepal. During these months, you have a high chance to spot rhinos and tigers in Chitwan National park.
Nepal is gaining popularity for its wide range of adventure activities. Given below are some of the popular ones including the best time to do them in Nepal.
September–February is the best time to take part in Paragliding. You get aerial views of the entire Pokhara valley and more.
White Water Rafting and Kayaking
Nepal is a country of rivers and rivulets. Some of the fast flowing rivers offer exotic, adventurous water experiences. These include activities like white water rafting, kayaking among others. For rafting, Bhotekoshi, Sunkoshi, Trishuli, Kali Gandaki, and Seti are the major options.
September–May are the ideal months to indulge in these activities. Although monsoon season can be exciting for these adventures, only a few rivers are accessible.
For beginners, November and December are the ideal options when water levels are lower.
Spring and autumn season is great for these activities. Both these activities run throughout the two seasons. The other seasons can be a bit risky for these activities. You may have to wait for more stable weather conditions- less windy, dry days and so on.
Mid-September–December is great months to take part in this exciting activity.
High Altitude Marathon
There are 2 big marathons that take place in some of the most adventurous trails on the planet. Tenzing Hillary Everest Marathon which takes place every year on May 29. And, Mustang Mountain Trail Race- An 8 stage, 12 days event that takes place in Mustang during April. For 2019, this race is scheduled from 13th to 25th of April.
One of the best ways to explore the regions of Nepal, Mountain biking is an exciting and adventurous trip. It offers visitors to enjoy the great natural view of the high hills along with the local hospitality of Nepal.
This takes you to different altitudes of Nepal from the lowlands to the high altitudes. You are bound to get glorious views of sunrise, sunsets, and mountains among others. Some of the most famous mountain biking routes are:
- Parts of Annapurna circuit
- Pokhara valley
- Jomsom Pokhara
To take part in this, the ideal seasons are spring, autumn, and winter. You can enjoy your rides in warm, stable weather conditions. The paths are also in their best condition along with amazing visibility.
Best Time to Witness Festivals in Nepal
Nepal is home to a diverse group of people of different ethnic background, culture, and traditions. Hence, it is home to a wide variety of festivals. There is more than one festival that occurs every season.
Festivals are a great opportunity to get to know the rituals, history, and lifestyle of the people. Hence, depending on which of these you want to enjoy, you can decide the best time to visit Nepal.
Some of the most popular ones are:
Festivals in Autumn
For some of the biggest Hindu festivals of Nepal, autumn ins the perfect time to visit Nepal.
- Dashain and Tihar: These are the 2 biggest festivals of Nepal. Celebrated throughout the country with holidays for both private and public services. These two festivals are about community building, worshipping, and tradition.
- Teej: Celebrated by the Nepali Hindu women all over Nepal, it is a female-centric festival. Women from all walks of life fill the streets of Nepal in their best red Saris and jewelry. They sing, dance and fast for a happy marriage while having a blast.
- Chhath Festival: Honoring the God of the sun, the people in the lowlands of Nepal, celebrate this festival. You can see the locals taking baths in the local water sources early in the morning and offering prayers to the Sun.
- Gai Jatra Festival: This is a festival unique to the Newar and Tharu communities of Kathmandu. On this day, the locals of these communities commemorate the deaths of people who have died during the year. Young boys dress as cows and pay respects to their loved ones who have passed away.
Another way to celebrate this festival is by satires. Anyone can make satires, jokes on anything and of anyone. You can enjoy these in newspapers, live performances, and social media.
Festivals in Spring
- Holi: a colorful festival celebrated throughout the country with colors and water balloons. This festival welcomes spring.
- Rato Machhendranath Jatra: Celebrated mainly in Patan, you will see a huge decorated chariot with idols of gods. During this festival, the locals pull the chariot throughout the city of Patan.
- Losar: This marks the Tibetan New year. Different ethnicities of Nepal celebrate it on different dates. Celebrated in multiple ways, Losar is a colorful event. Celebrations can last anywhere between 3-15 days. This is one of the biggest festivals of Sherpa, Tamang, and many other Tibetan-speaking populations of Nepal.
- Dumji Festival: Celebrated with grandeur and organized by 1 family from the Sherpa community in Namche Bazar, this is a spectacular event. This festival celebrates the birth of Guru Rinpoche on a lotus flower.
- Bisket Jatra (Nepali New Year): This festival celebrates the Nepali New year. Accompanied by different interesting rituals, it is a major holiday in Nepal.
- Buddha Jayanti: Hindus and Buddhists celebrate the birth of Buddha on this day. Marked with the burning of oil lamps and visits to temples and stupas, this is an important Buddhist festival.
- Tiji festival: This is the biggest festival in Mustang. Celebrated throughout the Mustang region, family members come back to the village from all over the world. This festival takes place in the palace courtyard of the last king of Mustang.
Festivals in Winter
- Saraswati Puja: Also known as Shree Panchami. Saraswati Puja celebrates the birthday of Goddess Saraswati. She is the Hindu Goddess of knowledge and wisdom. Hence, students and scholars all over Nepal worship her. Hindu devotees believe gaining her favor will make them wiser and more knowledgeable.
- Maghe Sankranti: Maghe Sankranti is the start of the holy month. This festival hopes to mark the end of the winter season. It also hopes for warmer weather and better health and fortune.
- Paddy Day: Marked by the planting of rice, the paddy day is much awaited by people involved in agriculture. During this festival, you can see local farmers sing, play and work together as they plant paddy seedlings.
- Naag Panchami: According to the legends, Kathmandu valley used to be a big lake- home of snakes. After Humans drained the lake, these snakes became very angry.
Hence, the locals of Kathmandu valley promised to dedicate a day to these snakes or Naags. They also created different ponds and small lakes for the snakes to live in.
So, to this day, the local keep the promise and worship snakes to continue living in harmony with nature.
Best Time to Visit Nepal for Sightseeing Tours
Kathmandu Sightseeing Tours
You can do sightseeing tours in Kathmandu throughout the year. Unlike the lowlands and high altitudes of Nepal, Kathmandu rarely sees extreme weather conditions. Hence, you can choose to do this tour on your ideal season.
Kathmandu tours offer visits to 7 of the 8 UNESCO World Heritage Sites of Nepal.
October to May are great months for this tour. You can enjoy all the perks of visiting these places during these months.
- Muktinath Tour: Spring and autumn seasons are ideal for pilgrimages or cultural tours to Muktinath. The extreme weather conditions during the other seasons make tours difficult and unreliable.
- Gosaikunda: The holy lake of GosaiKunda is best visited after mid-February to June or September-December. You can also visit during the winter months for a more adventurous journey and see the lake in its frozen state in May.
Nepal Tea Harvest Tour
The unique taste of Nepal’s tea is popular among its visitors. If you wish to visit Nepal to see the harvest of its local tea plantations, late March-early November are the perfect months.
For people who love golf, January and February are the months to visit Nepal. Nepal offers the chance to play golf in some of the most exotic fields in the world.
Some of the local Gurung and Magar communities in some parts of Nepal still gather honey from the wild bees nests. They do this using traditional methods.
To see this unique activity in action, you should visit Nepal during October–November and May–June. The local men climb high cliffs and hang themselves in air using ropes and bamboo ladders. They harvest honey from the wild bees nest on the cliffs.
You can also taste the nectar. The popular honey hunting places in Nepal are Bhujung, Pasgaon, Dhading, Jharlang.
Which is the Best Time to Visit Nepal?
If you are on a tight or short schedule then spring and autumn season are perfect for you. These seasons see fewer flight delays and cancellations as well as roadblocks. You can enjoy the perks of your visits within your schedule.
For longer duration visits, you have more chance of spontaneity. You can risk losing a day or two for a better and wilder experience in Nepal.
Which is the Best Budget-friendly Time to Visit Nepal?
If budget is not a constraint, you can choose any season to visit. You can also opt for luxury treks and tours in Nepal.
But, if budget is a concern then you may want to look over the summer and winter season of Nepal. These seasons are less visited and are the off-peak season for Nepal. Hence, many tours and trek operators offer good prices on their packages.
Many of the hotels, lodges also offer discounts on their per night rates. Else, they offer seasonal or complimentary packages.
The time of your visit, budget, what you plan to do, and your convenience help determine the best time to visit Nepal.
Having said that, Nepal has everything for different travelers. So, you can visit Nepal throughout the year.
For any further questions or queries for your journey to Nepal, feel free to contact us.