If it were cheap to fly to Kathmandu, I would have gone back there already after my (too short) weeklong trip last February.
True, the city is busy, noisy, and very dusty, but there are so many things there that I like.
I loved the sights, the food, the people, and the possibility of jumping onto a bus and finding yourself within sight of the Himalayas after just a few hours.
Best of all, I loved it that everything in Kathmandu–except for the flight going there–is inexpensive.
If the city didn’t have a problem with load shedding, I would have cancelled my return flight last February and extended my stay. As a response to friends who have been asking me where to stay in Kathmandu, I have written this brief review of the two hotels I used when I went there.
Kathmandu Home Hotel
I booked Kathmandu Home for one night because I wanted to be picked up at the airport. I have heard of taxi drivers overcharging tourists and I wanted to avoid it. Our flight was late but I easily found the hotel driver waiting for me and three other passengers just outside the airport.
I paid for their cheapest room ($20 per night) so I was quite surprised to see how big my room was. According to the receptionist, they upgraded me for free because they had run out of the regular rooms that I booked.
I loved it; the mattress was firm, there was an internet connection, and the cable TV had foreign channels as well. There was a fridge, a water heater, and the free breakfast was delicious, too (they even asked me if I wanted seconds!).
Unfortunately, they were as affected with Kathmandu’s electricity problems and the lights went out at 4am, returning only in the evening the next day. I decided that paying $20 a day wasn’t worth it if I couldn’t work anyway. The hot water also didn’t work well, so I had to grit my teeth when I took a shower the next morning.
After I checked out, I shouldered my backpack and went walking around Thamel. There were a lot of hostels there, but I chose to inquire inside Hotel Taishan because it looked big to me. If figured they’d maybe have something within my budget of $10-12 per day.
Address: Jyatha, Kathmandu, Nepal. Book via Agoda here: Kathmandu Home Hotel
I would have been fine paying $10 for a bed, so I couldn’t believe it when the receptionist at Hotel Taishan told me that their dorm rooms cost only 300 rupees per day, equivalent to US$3!
There were two bunk beds per room (loved the mattresses and the duvet was thick and clean!) and men and women were separate. I also loved it that they provided a desk and chair, so when electricity came back that night–as with the rest of Kathmandu, there was no electricity during the day–I worked until around 4am when lights finally went out (yep, fast Wifi was free!).
Best of all, there was hot water 24 hours a day. After the quick and cold shower I had at Kathmandu Home, I took a really long one in Hotel Taishan. I ended up staying there a total of four nights out of seven that I stayed in both Kathmandu and Pokhara.
There’s no free breakfast, but for only $3 a day, I would choose this place again and again if I were to go back in Kathmandu.
Address: Amrit Marg, Jyatha, Thamel. Book via Agoda here: Hotel Taishan
What discount hotel sites do you check when you’re traveling?
If you’re going to Nepal soon, you can look for hotels in Kathmandu via Agoda.