10 Longest Rivers Of Nepal

Nepal is a rich country in natural and water resources. The beautiful and unbelievable geographical structure of Nepal having high mountains in the north cause the birth of several small and large rivers of Nepal. These rivers are the sources of rich water in Nepal. There are many rivers from the East to the West that flow down from the high Northern Himalayas and mountains.

Out of all those continuously flowing rivers that are continuously giving life to this beautiful land of Nepal, we are presenting you the list of the 10 longest rivers of Nepal that flow down from North to the South.

List Of The 10 Longest Rivers Of Nepal

These are the names of the rivers that are originated from the high Himalayas and mountains in the North and are continuously flowing to the South to meet the vast ocean through India.

The length of the river is measured between the place of its origin and the place where it drains into another river or ocean.

Karnali River

Karnali is the longest river in Nepal. It originates from Mapchachungo Glacier in Tibetan Plateau near Lake Manasarovar. It flows through the high Himalayas of Nepal and meets the Sharda River at the Brahmaghat in India. Once it enters India, Karnali is known as the Ghaghara River in India. The total length of Karnali is 1,080 KM.

Gandaki River

Gandaki is one of the major rivers in Nepal. Originating from the Himalayas, the Gandaki river is very known for its deep canyon in the northern Himalayas. Among the other rivers in Nepal, Gandaki has a big religious significance. According to the Hindu legends, the Gandaki River is a form of Tulasi Devi who is considered to be the descent of Goddess Laxmi. Even the basin of this river contains three mountains having a height of more than 8000 meters-Dhaulagiri, Manalsu, and Annapurna I. It is also the deepest river in Nepal. The Gandaki River is also known as Narayani in Nepal and the Gandak River in India. The total length of Gandaki is 814 KM.

Koshi River

Koshi, also known as the Sapta Koshi River is the largest river in Nepal. It is not only the largest river in Nepal but also the second-longest river in Nepal. The Sapta Koshi is a tributary of seven rivers that include Arun River, Sun Koshi, Dudh Koshi, Bhote Koshi, Tama Koshi, Likhu, and Indravati. Koshi flows through Eastern Nepal, and enters Northern Bihar, India, and joins mightly the Ganga River near Kurshela in Kathihar district. The total length of the Koshi is 729 KM.

Rapti River

Rapti is the major river in Mid- Western Nepal. Located in the Rapti Zone of Nepal, this river is notable for ethnic groups like Kham Magar, and Tharu. Rapti is a great source of irrigation in Western Nepal and has great hydroelectric potential. Due to the recurrent floods every year, this river is also known as Gorakhpur’s Sorrow. Rapti joins Karnali, one of the major tributaries of the Ganges in the Uttar Pradesh of India. The total length of West Rapti is 600 KM.

Bagmati River

Bagmati River is one of the major and holy rivers in Nepal. The river has a great historical and religious significance for the establishment of human civilization in the valley of Kathmandu, the capital of Nepal. Bagmati is holy for both Hindus and Buddhists of Nepal. Flowing through the Kathmandu Valley, it runs to Southern Nepal and then drains into the Bihar of India. It is also known as Kareh once it enters India. The total length of the Bagmati River is around 587 KM.

Mahakali River

It is the river that separates Nepal from India in the West. Mahakali River originates from Kalapani in the Northern Himalayas in Uttarakhand, India. But after originating, it flows through Western Nepal bordering with India and joins the Karnali river after reaching India. It is also known as Kali River and Sharda River. The total length of the Mahakali River is 350 KM.

Kamala River

Kamala River is the major river of Province No: 2 of Nepal after Bagmati in the Sarlahi district. The river has religious significance as well it is a great source of irrigation for people living around this river. It originates from the Churia range in Sindhuligarhi of the Sinduli district. The Kamala flows in the Southern direction by crossing the Kamala Khoj area. After passing through a gorge above Chaupat, it flows into the Terai of Nepal at Chisapani. It also forms a border between Dhanusha and Siraha district of Nepal, enters India in Madhubani district, and joins the Bagmati river at Badlaghat in Khagaria district of India. Its total length is 328 KM.

Bheri River

The Bheri River is a major tributary of the Karnali River draining the western Dhaulagiri range in western Nepal. It has three important upper tributaries. Sani Bheri River drains the southern slopes of this range while the Thuli Bheri River drains the northern slopes. Another tributary Uttar Ganga drains Dhorpatan Valley to the south of the Dhaulagiri. Downstream, the Bheri flows through Surkhet Valley before joining the Karnali River in the Mahabharat Range or Lesser Himalaya. The total length of the Bheri River is 264 KM.

Arun River

Arun River is one of the seven tributaries of the Sapt Koshi River. It is one of the few rivers in Nepal that share a border with China. The river originates in the Tibet Autonomous Region of China. It is also known as Phung Chu or Bum Chu there. Arun is the largest trans-Himalayan river passing through Nepal. It has the greatest snow and ice-covered area of any river basin in Nepal. The total length of the Arun River is 250 KM.

Seti River

Seti is also one of the important tributaries of Nepal’s longest river Karnali. It originates from the snowfields and glaciers around the twin peaks of Api and Nampa in the south-facing slopes of the main Himalayas. It is an area that is a trifunctional border of Nepal, India, and China. It first starts flowing toward the South-East direction, then turns towards the South-West, and then again South-East and joins the Karnali River. The total length of the Seti is 202 KM.

Rivers Of Nepal Total Length
Karnali River 1080 KM
Gandaki River 814 KM
Sapt Koshi River 729 KM
Rapti River 600 KM
Bagmati River 587 KM
Mahakali River 350 KM
Kamala River 328 KM
Bheri River 264 KM
Arun River 250 KM
Seti River 202 KM
Longest Rivers Of Nepal

Some Interesting Facts About Rivers Of Nepal

Besides the fact that rivers always have a great religious significance among the people of Nepal, there are many interesting facts related to these rivers of Nepal. Nepali culture is very related to rivers and waters. That’s why most of the sacred places are situated at the bank of the rivers. Rivers are worshipped as Goddess and called Mother(Mata) in Nepali culture.

Some facts are related to the rivers mentioned above while some are related to other rivers in Nepal. We hope you are going to like these facts about the rivers of Nepal.

  • There are more than 6,000 rivers in Nepal including rivulets and tributaries.
  • There are 1000 rivers more than 10 KM, and 24 rivers that are more than 100 KM. The cumulative length of rivers in Nepal is about 45,000 KM.
  • It is estimated that more than 70% of dry season flow and 40% of annual flow of Ganga River comes from the rivers of Nepal.
  • Karnali is the longest river of Nepal with the total length of 1,080 KM while Gandaki is the deepest river of Nepal. The Sapt Koshi is the largest river of Nepal with a basin size of around 74, 500 sq.km.
  • Despite the fact that the Sapt Koshi is formed by 7 tributaries, the Arun river alone drains more than half of the area to the Sapt Koshi. But it provides only about a quarter of the total discharge.

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