Royal Nepal Airlines and several private companies offer domestic air services, but flights are relatively expensive and often delayed or cancelled due to inopportune weather. It's advisable to book domestic flights a week in advance and keep re-confirming your ticket just to make sure you don't slip off the passenger list if the flight is full. Airlines only accept payment in hard currency from visitors. Kathmandu's domestic airport is a shabby, chaotic place usually full of stressed tourists whose flights have been delayed.
Public buses are the main form of transportation and are incredibly cheap, incredibly uncomfortable and tediously slow. Buses ply almost every paved road (not that there are many), as well as some of the unpaved ones, and nearly every visitor comes back with horror stories about 'almost' plunging into a ravine. There are several services between Kathmandu and Pokhara aimed specifically at tourists. Those who dislike having chickens and goats supplementing their human travelling companions will prefer them. There are no trains and no drive-yourself rental cars in Nepal. Cars with drivers can be hired.
Bike-riding is quickly gaining popularity with visitors for short jaunts; a bike is often quicker than using local buses, especially in the Kathmandu Valley. Walking is still the most important and most reliable method of getting from A to B and for moving cargo. In most of Nepal walking is the only option. More goods are carried by human porters than by every other form of transport combined.
Local transport in the Kathmandu Valley and around Pokhara includes metered and unmetered taxis, buses, tempos (three-wheeled buses), auto-rickshaws, bicycle rickshaws and bicycles.
Copyright 2010 Lonely Planet Publications , all rights reserved, used with permission