Not every adventure junkie comes to Nepal to tackle the multi-day climbs of Everest Base Camp and the Annapurna Circuit. Throughout the country, though mainly concentrated in the Kathmandu Valley and Pokhara regions, is an array of jungles, crags and wild waters waiting to be explored.

While Nepal’s towns and cities team with sensory overload, its rural landscapes are a playground for all levels of adrenalin-pumping activities that don’t require a trekking permit to get the heart racing.

1. Paragliding

Pokhara is a tranquil valley encased by mountainous peaks and known as the starting point for the famous Annapurna Sanctuary Trek. But it’s also known for the abundance of adrenalin-fuelled activities bundled within its relaxing landscapes. With incredible views of three of the highest mountains in the world – Dhaulagiri, Annapurna, and Manaslu and clear air, Pokhara is often labelled as one of the best places to take to the skies with a parachute. Scramble up the cliff-face in a bumpy jeep, gear up with your instructor and be ready to see Nepal’s stunning lake and Himalaya encased valley from up high, spinning, spiralling and ailing through the air in a 30-60 minute floating, visual-feast.

2.White Water Rafting

One way to up the ante on your journey from Pokhara to Chitwan is to take to the waters, where varying degrees of rapids can be found for beginners and die hard current junkies. You can head out on a white water rafting expedition that includes camping and drench yourself on the torrents on the way. Don’t be fooled by the calm turquoise blue waters which give you time to take in the cliff-hugging surroundings – they soon simmer with approaching white crashing waves that carry you a little further along towards the jungle.

3. Zip lining

Back when it launched in 2012, Nepal’s Zipline in Sarangkot was dubbed the world’s longest, fastest and steepest zip line at 1.8km long, and with a 600 metre vertical drop reaching speeds of up 100 miles per hour. Regardless of its current accolade status on the zipline-mad world stage, this is one not to be missed. A seated harness flies you over a forest bed woven together by the Seti River and in the direction of the Pokhara mountain peaks, where you will immediately wish the zip line to be longer and even faster.

4. Bungee Jumping & Canyon Swinging

Nepal’s bungee adventure not only claims to be the 8th highest in the world, but it’s set within a jungle-clad, tropical canyon gorge where you can indulge the mind and body before taking on the 160m plunge over the wild Bhote Koshi River. The jump, with accompanying 240 meter canyon swing, is set within an adventure haven known as ‘The Last Resort’, hidden away on the highest slopes of the Gaurishankar Conservation Area, three hours from Kathmandu. 

5. Canyoning

You can clamber, climb, slide, glide, jump and abseil your way through a variety of jungle depths and waterfalls all over Nepal, including the Caharaudi and Jalberi canyons. Canyoneering allows you to get below the surface and tackle a rocky assault course via ropes and water trekking, and see the landscape from a new angle – from its most narrow and hidden layers.

6. Ice-climbing

For those who are a little bit more experienced with peak ascents, a technical mountaineering course in the snowy Himalaya mountain range awaits from November to March. It’s time to strap in the crampons, yield an ice axe and climb, belay and rappel down thick sheets of waterfall ice in The Langtang Region and the Ice climbing site of Kyangjing Gompa

Beginners may be required to take on a training course before tackling the smaller waterfall climbs.

7. Rock-climbing

With certified guides guiding you, you can learn to tackle the vertical crags via bouldering, chimney climbs and abseiling, everywhere from the Nagarjun Forest, Hattiban and Nagarkot inside the Kathmandu valley to Namche bazar in the foothills of Mt Everest. The rugged rock faces provide canvas for varying levels of difficulty.

8. Mountain biking

Fast track paths and tough, sloping climbs, there’s certainly one way to get to grips with the Kathmandu Valley – on two wheels. The energy of multi-day mountain biking comes with its scenic rewards, covering ground more quickly than on foot, while still getting to experience teahouse life. Trails along the shivapuri national park and Tika Bhairav trails are some of the famous cycling routes inside the valley. From a single days biking trips to overnight camping trip along the national park you can find yourself in some of the most challenging trails in the closest proximity to Kathmandu valley.

9. Helicopter Flight to EBC

The 12 day Everest Base Camp trek is not for everyone, but a scenic flight will certain get you to the heart-racing view of Nepal’s beloved mountain, passing over some of the treks famous stops such as Namche and landing at EBC. Want to see the Himalayas in a four-hour round-trip? This is your chance. 

Whether you’ve completed your dream trek, or want to experience Nepal adventurous in other ways, there are plenty of options to chose from, starting from the jungle grounds to the valley skies.

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