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Nepal Travel Destination

Manakamana is a small mountain-top town that is popular for those who travel through Nepal and have a wish that they truly want granted. Many Nepali travelers and foreigners alike make a trip to the temple of Manakamana and more specifically to tell their burning wishes to the Goddess Shakti who is said to protect the area. (Shakti has 9 names that she is known for, so if Shakti sounds incorrect, this might be why. Some of her other names are Durga, Laxmi, Kali, and Manakamana.)

What is special about getting to this town is that you get to take a cable car to the top of the mountain. Of course you can walk – if you could not travel by foot this would not be Nepal – but the cable car is a fun and different way to get some views of Nepal and to shorten a trip to this mountain top town.

The town of Manakamana is a unique travel destination, it not only has a lovely temple decorated with bells and is usually surrounded with wishers but travel through this town is a stimulating experience in itself. The town has a noticeable energetic and uplifting atmosphere, maybe it is because everyone who travels here believes that their wish will become their reality, but nonetheless the town seems to uplift the spirit.

The path through the town from the cable car to the temple is lined with shops selling unique souvenirs that are not so common in other parts of Nepal. Restaurants in the area mostly sell traditional Nepali food such as dal bhat and Mo-mo. There are also stalls selling Nepali street food such as panipuri and samosa. This town gives visitors a great opportunity to get away from places catering to tourism. For those who travel here, they are in for a treat because they can get a taste of unspoiled traditional Nepali food.

The temple of Manakamana is decorated with brass bells and candles. When the weather is nice and there are no clouds out, you can see some nice Himalayan views from the backside. Throughout the town you will find sacrificial goats and chickens for sale, do not be surprised to find many animals being sacrificed to the Goddess next to the temple. The sacrifice corner is hidden so if you do not wish to see any of the actual offerings, you do not have to watch. On the other side of the sacrificing grounds there is a place to purchase pigeons to set free. These birds are quite fat and to buy them and set their souls free, they will not get far but the setting free of the soul is said to be also very good luck (another method for good luck is to sacrifice).

The town sits over 1300 meters high from Nepal’s East-West Highway. Should you choose to travel here by foot, it is more popular to do so from the the town of Gorkha on the northern side of Manakamana. This hike takes about 7 hours. Nowadays, many people prefer the 15 minute and convenient ride of the cable car method of transportation. The cable car station of Cheres sits just 5 kilometers East of Mugling which sits approximately 3-4 hours by bus from either Kathmandu or Pokhara. The ride from these two major cities is shorter in time to reach Cheres if traveling by private vehicle or by tour bus.

For those who travel here and want to stay in the town with the wish granting Goddess, there are many sleeping accommodations for whatever your preference of hotel might be in Manakamana. The cable car operates Sunday-Friday from 9:00am – 17:00pm and closes for lunch from 12:00pm – 13:00pm, on Saturdays and Holidays it opens at 8:00am, so make sure to plan your ride accordingly.

To read more about travel to Manakamana see the Manakamana ‘A Wish From The Heart’ article on our Nepal Travel Articles page.

To view pre-designed Nepal travel packages, see our programs page or the encyclopedia for more Nepal Travel items.