Situated at the top of Charikot, Dolakha, Kalinchowk proves a must go destination for religious pilgrims and travel enthusiasts. The trip offers scenic views all along the ride and the best part begins when one starts the uphill journey from Khadichaur. The road upto Charikot is blacktopped and a comfortable ride except the U-turns typical of hilly highways.
Dolalghat, Mudhe, Kharidhunga and Mudhe are some of the few spectacular stops on the journey. Once reaching Charikot, the road is a steep offroad uphill ride. The drive is almost like a X-bike racing event due to the tough terrain. Some turns of the road rarely see sunlight and are full of slippery ice all-year round. Dusty roads are another hassles.
Despite all these, once you reach Kuri, also the basecamp for Kalinchowk, all is forgotten. The place itself offers majestic views and a serene landscape. The hotels around this remote area offer surprisingly amazing service and hospitality. Many prefer to stay the night in Kuri, and begin the ascend to Kalinchowk the next day, early morning which is a 30-45 minutes uphill trek. Staying in Kuri also helps in acclimatization as the altitude is over 3000 meters above sea level. Plus, it’s fun, the hotels offer cozy halls with campfire, dinner, drinks and music. Some can be seen enjoying Barbecue besides the fire.
People start the ascent of Kalinchowk early in the morning without eating anything as it is considered pure in Hindu Religion to offer prayers. The time to reach the top depends upon individuals. For some, it’s a 15 minute walk , and for some it’s a tough 1 hour uphill climbing. No matter what, upon reaching the summit, everything seems worthwhile. At 3,800 meters, the Kalinchowk summit offers almost a 360 degree panoramic view of the Himalayan ranges and on a clear day, people believe, even Kathmandu valley is visible from there. Plus, it’s a pilgrimage, Kalinchowk Bhagwati, is considered very powerful Hindu Goddess and people believes offering prayers to the Goddess, their wishes are granted.
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