Chandragiri Chitlang trek is more of a village trek in Nepal and a different trek that focuses more on village life and not mountain and the sawtoothed peaks. Chandragiri is a very popular hill located on the southern flank of Kathmandu valley. It is a melting pot of hiking and cycling enthusiasts. The top of the hill no doubt offers a grand view of the mountains in the north but it is more popular as the trail that leads to the ancient village of Chitlang.
Chitlang is an ancient village that dates back to the Lichhavi dynasty that ruled Kathmandu from 1150 BCE to 750 BCE. The ancient scripture found in the village shows that the land was gifted by a lichhavi king to sheep herders and local farmers who were known as Gopali. Gopali’s are branch of Newari community which is present till the day. The village now is a melting pot of caste, creed and community but still dominated by the ancient Newars. Despite being close to the capital of the country, Chitlang preserves the age old lifestyle and even the houses. Trekking to Chitlang is all about exploring culture and helping the community to help the community.
The trek is easy and is enjoyed if done overnight. Except the exhaustion of uphill and downhill the trail is neither technical nor easy. This is as well one of the best short treks in Nepal that is not overwhelmed by a lot of travellers. If you want a sweet escape to the wild in a short time and less budget, you may want to consider Chandragiri and Chitlang as your next destination.
|Day 1||Drive from Kathmandu to Matatirtha and hike to Chitlang|
|Day 2||Village excursion followed by hiking to Kulekhani and driving back to kathmandu|
Drive from Kathmandu to Matatirtha and hike to Chitlang
Chandragiri Chitlang is a beautiful village trek that can be done over a short period of time. The trek starts by driving to Matatirtha, a small settlement towards the southwest corner of Kathmandu valley. This 13 kilometer ride from the city center would take around an hour. Once you get off in Matatirtha your hiking on foot begins. You will hike through the foot of the hills initially and further you would start climbing on one namely Chandragiri. The surrounding around you would be beautiful and on a clear day you will see the mountains as well. The trail encompasses beautiful forest and off road track where motor vehicles rarely travel. From the top of the hill you will be seeing the beautiful village nested below. The trek would take anywhere in between 4-6 hours. Snapping pictures, resting frequently to enjoy the nature would take around 6 hours to reach our final destination. Overnight in Chitlang.
Village excursion followed by hiking to Kulekhani and driving back to kathmandu
We wake up early in the morning and have homemade and fresh breakfast. Pronto after breakfast we spend around an hour to see around the village. After spending brief moment in the village knowing the culture and snapping the picture we embark on our trail to Kulekhani. With the distance view of Kathmandu city we keep climbing the hill. You will notice that the forest and the tranquility is amazing. Meanwhile, on our way we come across beautiful waterfalls. One of the waterfalls make beautiful natural swimming pool, not too deep, not too shallow. Our final destination Kulekhani is a water reservoir and an artificial lake, which takes around 6 hours from the village of Chitlang. In Kulekhani waits our vehicle which takes us back to Kathmandu.