Having hiked for a day, swarmed by numerous freelance guides and perhaps almost scammed by a boy, trotted the dusty streets, shopped on-stop at tourists’ markets, as well as braved the bumpy roads and crazy traffic of Kathmandu, Chandra Ban Retreat (formerly known as Chandra Ban Eco Resort) was such a welcome change to my Nepal trip.
This oasis of calm had me at Namaste as soon as I stepped into the extensive garden at the entrance.
I don’t think anyone could resist this beautiful setting.
I went into my room and another pleasant surprise ensued. The balcony faced the mountains and was in direct embrace with the sunset. I stayed during Full Moon and so the Super Moon became part of the welcome party as well. Incidentally, “Chandra Ban” means “Moon Forest” in Nepali, deriving its name from its location under the Shivapuri Forest and the shape of the property.
I was thankful to be able to take refuge in this quiet sanctuary, to be surrounded by the lush greenery and picturesque environment.
I practised yoga with the group at the resort’s yoga shala in the morning and evening. When you relax your mind and soul to immerse in the environment, you would be amazed by the tremendous energy that the elements of Mother Nature could bring forth. It was memorable to be practising yoga as the sun was setting right in front of me. Tadasana (or mountain pose) took to a different dimension when standing face to face with the mountains.
Chandra Ban Retreat boasts an impressive collection of books, allowing you to unplug and read in the peaceful and quiet location. If you prefer to explore the forested landscape, you could go on a half day hike at Shivapuri Nagarjun National Park. Our food was prepared by the resort’s kitchen and every meal was delicious.
Located about 30 minutes away from the centre of Kathmandu, Chandra Ban Retreat is not far away from civilisation in terms of distance. Nonetheless, the short bumpy drive up and down the mountain could be uncomfortable for some visitors. I recommend at least 2 nights’ stay in the area for a short retreat in the mountains, and if you are fine with short bumpy mountainous drives, you could use Chandra Ban as a base for your travels in Kathmandu.
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