– Janak Shrestha
The Khanigaon Rock Garden at Ghermu, Marsyangdi rural municipality in the northern belt of Lamjung district is a hit with visitors. The number of visitors coming to observe the Rock Garden has been steadily going up. The locals of Ghermu had promoted the concept of Rock Garden for the first time in the country and developed the physical infrastructures for the same in view of the Visit Nepal Year 2020 campaign announced by the government.
Visit Year campaign aims to bring in 2 million tourists in 2020 and it was formally inaugurated on January 1. The Rock Garden is a unique experience for the tourists interested in observing the natural beauty amidst rustic experience. Rock Garden is located inside a rocky landscape. It is dotted with caves and lairs and tunnels. The visitors can even spend a night out inside the cave. It takes more than half an hour to see around the place. Four bridges have also been constructed to go from one rock to another.
President of Rock Garden Conservation and Tourism Management Committee, Kamsarki Gurung, said that the number of tourists, foreigners and domestic tourists alike, coming to observe the Rock Garden has increased of late. He added that the visitors are spellbound by the place. There is also a cavern at the place and one can observe many things. It takes about one and half hours to see around the tunnel.
“I have not seen a rock landscape like this before. It is a beautiful place. I feel I am in heaven,” said backpacker Yunita Shrestha. Another visitor from Besisahar, Sukaram Dulal, said, “It is a must see place. It would be interesting especially for the people from the Tarai plains to visit this place and trek around. Marsyangdi rural municipality vice-chair Hom Bahadur BK said some foreign tourists even spend night inside the cave.
“More foreign tourists than domestic ones have been coming to the Rock Garden these days. In this way, it is also contributing to some extent to the Visit Nepal Year 2020 campaign,” Committee secretary Sita Gurung said. The Committee has devised plan to make the Rock Garden more systematic and beautiful. It plans to upgrade the facilities available to the visitors. So far Rs 2.1 million has been spent for developing the Rock Garden. Food accommodation facilities have been made available to the visitors at the place.
There is also plan to construct a bike track in some days. Home stay facility is also available at 10 houses in the place. The Rock Garden is located near the Round-Annapurna Trekking Route and it can be reached if one takes the Besisahar-Chame-Manang road via Rambazaar.