Nepal: Women's Expedition Nepal

Nepal: Women's Expedition

Nepal

Hiking
13 days
2021

Mon, Aug 09

Sat, Aug 21

€1,525

Still available

Book

Overview

Through a mix of festival celebrations, cultural experiences and trekking in the Himalayas, this women’s only expedition will give you a unique insight into the diverse lives of Nepalese women. Meet a wide range of female trailblazers, from chefs at a social enterprise, women campaigning to end discrimination against women who are menstruating, to an all-female crew of mountain guides and porters. Hear a range of inspiring personal stories and spend some time reconnecting with nature at a female-run village homestay on the fringes of Chitwan National Park, which is helping to conserve wildlife in the area. You’ll also have the chance to take part in the Hartalika Teej Festival alongside the locals, a three-day women’s only Hindu celebration.

Map

Itinerary

Day 1Kathmandu
Namaste! Welcome to Kathmandu. Your Nepal Women’s Only Expedition will begin with a welcome meeting held at the hotel at 6pm – please check with the hotel reception to find out where it will be. After the welcome meeting, join your local leader and other members of your group for an included dinner – your leader will take you to a local restaurant where you’ll have the opportunity to enjoy local delicacies like momos and dal bhat and see a traditional dance performance.
Day 2Kathmandu
This morning you’ll take a cooking class at Seven Women, an organisation supported by The Intrepid Foundation that socially and economically empowers marginalised women in Nepal through a variety of education programs, skills training and income generation. While the initiative started with just seven participants, to date over 5,000 women have been educated, trained and employed by Seven Women. In the cooking class, you’ll learn how to make some delicious Nepali dishes and have the chance to talk to these amazing local women who have overcome discrimination to turn their lives around. Full after the lunch you prepared, you can enjoy a free afternoon exploring Kathmandu. You may want to check out popular sites like the Royal Palace Hanuman Dhoka or the Garden of Dreams. Your leader will also be able to recommend some lesser-known gems to explore. Tonight, you’ll head to The Village Café for an included group dinner. The Village Café allows women who would otherwise be based at home to earn a living cooking traditional Nepali cuisine, using ingredients they have grown in their own fields.
Day 3Pokhara
After breakfast this morning you’ll visit the Restless Development office in Kathmandu to learn about how this project is trying to eliminate Chhaupadi pratice in Nepal. Chhaupadi is a tradition associated with menstrual taboo in the western part of Nepal, which prohibits Hindu women and girls from participating in normal family activities while menstruating, as they are considered impure. The women are banned from the house and are required to live in a cattle shed or menstruation hut for the duration of their period. During this time, women and girls are restricted from participating in everyday life events, and from interacting with their communities and also risk their lives due to the poor ventilation conditions in the huts and sheds. After lunch you’ll take a 30-minute flight to Pokhara in Central Nepal. Once your feet are back on the ground, your leader will take you for an orientation walk around the the lakeside area to an elaborate Hindu temple and a Buddhist monastery. We'll walk along the lake (Phewa Tal), the second largest in Nepal, and take in spectacular views of the Annapurnas and the famous fishtail peak, Machhapuchhare. Tonight, you’ll stay at 3 Sisters Guesthouse, owned by three sisters who work to promote and empower socially disadvantaged women through adventure tourism. They provide skills-based training programs with gainful employment opportunities to encourage other women to become self-supportive and independent.
Day 4Pokhara/Kalikasthan - Yangjakot trek (1440m)
This morning you’ll embark on a scenic hour and a half long drive to the outlying village of Kalikasthan, a perfect starting point for a hike in the Nepalese mountains. Here, you’ll meet your all-female hiking crew made up of a mountain guide, assistant guides, and porters. They will lead you into a world of friendly villagers, terraced fields, alpine meadows and rhododendron forests set before a back-drop of snow-clad peaks. Begin with a two-hour walk down to the Modi River, where you’ll pass through delightful little villages and enjoy mesmerising vistas of the Lamjung Himal and Annapurna II mountains. From here, it’s another three-hours of walking to the village of Yangjakot where we spend the night in a local homestay to get a real insight into village life.
Day 5Yangjakot - Tanting trek (1580m)
This morning you’ll leave the homestay and make a gradual descent back down to the Modi Valley to the village of Chasu, which takes about three hours. Here there’ll be an opportunity to rest and refuel before undertaking the two-hour ascent to the terraced fields to Tanting. This Gurung village is typical of the raw beauty of traditional Nepalese hillside villages. Tonight, you’ll spend the night in another homestay, with plenty of opportunities for local interaction.
Day 6Tanting - Sikles trek (1980m)
This morning you’ll trek to Sikles, which takes about four hours in total and is your final destination for the day. This village is full of welcoming locals, picturesque terraced fields, alpine meadows and views of the giants of the Annapurnas section of the Himalayas: Annapurna IV which is 7,525 metres high and Annapurna II which towers at 7,937m, as well as the monolithic hulk of Lamjung Himal. There are many optional activities to fill your afternoon. If you haven’t had enough walking over the past few days, you can hike to viewpoints, pop into the small but charming Eco-Museum in Sikles, or just soak up the rhythm of local life. You can also help the host at your homestay with the daily chores, perhaps getting your hands dirty on the farm.
Day 7Sikles to Ghalegaun trek (1620m)
Set out on the longest section of your trek. Leave the village in the morning and enter deep woods trekking westwards with snow-capped peaks to your right. From here, you’ll make the steep climb up to a grassy wooded knoll known as Tara Top, which will take about four hours in total. This is the vantage-point for a spectacular 360-degree view that encompasses most of the Annapurna mountain chain. From here, you’ll descend for three hours through the shady forests of mossy rhododendron with wild flowers on the sunnier banks and wild orchids attached to the branches above, before arriving at Ghalegaun. A homestay in Ghalegaun will be your well-earned resting place for the night.
Day 8Ghalegaun to Bhurjung Khola trek/Pokhara
This morning is your last day of trekking for the trip. After breakfast, head down to Bhurjung Khola, an arm of the Seti River. You’ll follow it south until you reach the road, which will take about two hours. From here, your private vehicle will be here to take you back to Pokhara, an hour and a half long journey. You’ll have a free afternoon and evening to relax and enjoy everything Pokhara has to offer. Treat yourself to a massage as a reward for all your hard work or maybe shop for a red sari as is traditionally worn by local women over upcoming Teej festival.
Day 9Madi Valley
Enjoy a free morning before boarding the 20-minute afternoon flight to Chitwan. From here, you’ll take a two-and-a-half-hour drive to Madi Valley. Tonight, we’ll be staying at Intrepid’s community based tourism project, the Madi Valley Homestay program. This project provides sustainable income and encourages the communities living on the fringes of Chitwan National Park to conserve the wilderness and wildlife around them. On our arrival, the local women, dressed in their traditional Magar attire, will be there to greet you and welcome you into their homes. In the evening the women will teach you to cook local dishes to enjoy for dinner as a group. It’s also a great opportunity to chat to the women about their lives and work. After dinner, you’ll be treated to a cultural performance by the local women, where they demonstrate one of the oldest ethnic dance forms of the Magar community; the Maruni Naach.
Day 10Chitwan National Park
After breakfast, you’ll be driven to Chitwan National Park for a half-day safari. Upon arrival, you’ll be introduced to the camp staff and resident naturalists, who will take you on a safari through the forests and across grasslands to observe the varied and exciting wildlife in the park. In the afternoon, you’ll make the drive to Kasara Jungle Resort, your luxurious home for the evening in the heart of the national park. You’ll have time to relax or the option of a swim or spa treatment. You may want to join some of the group in the bar before an included dinner at the resort restaurant, where you can discuss the day’s sightings or listen to the exotic sounds of the jungle at night.
Day 11Chitwan National Park - Kathmandu
This morning you’ll leave Chitwan and take the hour and a half drive in a private vehicle to Tharu Village. Here you’ll have the opportunity to learn about the lifestyles of the Tharu women and observe a cookery demonstration of the local cuisine, before sharing lunch together. From here, you’ll drive to Chitwan Airport and take an hour and a half flight back to Kathmandu.
Day 12Hartalika Teej Festival
Today you’ll rise early for a three-hour trek to Buddhanikantha, a 30-minute drive from Kathmandu. On the way you’ll see everything from beautiful waterfalls to bustling village bazaars, before ending at the Hidden Monastery for lunch with the Buddhist nuns there. Upon your return to Kathmandu in the afternoon, you’ll prepare to take part in a very special celebration – Hartalika Teej, the fasting festival exclusive to the women of Nepal. During the festival, Nepalese women will dress in beautiful red sarees, fast throughout the day, and pray to Lord Shiva, one of the three main Hindu gods, for a happy marriage. Join the local women as they sing and dance their way to Pashupatinath Temple, located on the bank of the holy Bagmati River. It is the most important Hindu temple in Nepal and is exclusively accessible to women over Hartalika Teej Festival.
Day 13Kathmandu
Today is the final day of your women’s expedition in Nepal. There are no included activities planned, so you’re welcome to check out of the hotel any time before midday. If you are departing later, you can arrange luggage storage at the hotel until your flight. If you decide to stay an extra couple of days in Kathmandu, there are plenty of activities in and around the city to enjoy, as well as many Urban Adventures on offer. https://www.urbanadventures.com/destination/kathmandu-tours

Trip title

Nepal: Women's Expedition

Trip code

HNSW

Validity

Validity: 01 Jan 2019 to 31 Dec 2019
Select date
Please provide a valid email address.
Book now
Please provide a valid phone number. Like: +31636363634
Safe bookingPay later · No card needed
Do you have a question?
Your question should be between 5 and 2000 chars.
Send

Introduction

Through a mix of festival celebrations, cultural experiences and trekking in the Himalayas, this women’s only expedition will give you a unique insight into the diverse lives of Nepalese women. Meet a wide range of female trailblazers, from chefs at a social enterprise, women campaigning to end discrimination against women who are menstruating, to an all-female crew of mountain guides and porters. Hear a range of inspiring personal stories and spend some time reconnecting with nature at a female-run village homestay on the fringes of Chitwan National Park, which is helping to conserve wildlife in the area. You’ll also have the chance to take part in the Hartalika Teej Festival alongside the locals, a three-day women’s only Hindu celebration.

Style

Original

Themes

Expedition

Transport

Private vehicle,Plane

Physical Rating

4

Physical preparation

For the trek on this trip the general rule is you will need to be very fit, and the more preparation you have done for it the more you will enjoy it. You will be walking at altitudes of up to approximately 2800 metres above sea level. Whilst this trip isnt as demanding as longer and higher treks into the Annapurna or Everest region, you will be walking with your day pack, with the possibility of variations in temperature. We recommend that you undertake regular aerobic exercise in the months before you travel, particularly if you are not in the habit of regular exercise. Doing mountain walks or climbing long stair cases with a pack is good preparation (try putting a few bricks in your pack for real training). Walking, jogging, swimming or riding a bike are all good ways to increase your aerobic fitness, which will allow you to enjoy the trek to its fullest.

Joining point

Hotel Moonlight

Joining point description

The Hotel Moonlight is situated on the edge of Thamel near the bustling downtown area of Kathmandu. the hotel features a quiet courtyard garden and a rooftop terrace with great views over Kathmandu. 46 rooms with LCD TV, individually controlled A/C, room service, telephone and gym. There is free wifi throughout the hotel. The hotel has a restaurant serving Nepali and international cuisine as well as a bar.

Joining point instructions

Please refer to your itinerary for the joining hotel name and address. If you have not pre-booked an arrival transfer you will find taxis available on arrival at Kathmandu's Tribhuvan International Airport There are two pre-paid taxi booths inside the terminal, one on each side as you exit the baggage claim area. They have fixed rates of NPR600 to anywhere in the Thamel area from 6am-8pm and NPR800 from 8pm-6am. Otherwise you will need to bargain hard from the taxi rank outside of the airport - aim for NPR500. The drive into Thamel takes 30 to 40mins depending on the traffic. Please be aware that there may be porters outside the terminal offering their services for a fee. If you do not wish to use their services, be ready to kindly but firmly let them know. Alternatively Intrepid offer a pre-arranged transfer service option. Inquire with your agent and advise your flight arrival details at least 14 days prior to your trip departure. If you have purchased an arrival transfer you will be met after exiting customs outside. Look for our representative holding a sign with your name on it. If you have any trouble locating your transfer rep, or if your flight is going to be delayed, please call the following numbers: +977 980 112 3617 Normal check in time at the hotel is after 12:00.

Finish point

Hotel Moonlight

Finish point instructions

A taxi to the airport will cost about NPR600 from 6am-8pm and NRP800 from 8pm-6am. Hotel reception or your leader can help you organise a taxi. Alternatively Intrepid offer a pre-booked transfer service - enquire at the time of booking. Normal check out time is 12 noon. If you are departing later, you can arrange luggage storage at the hotel.

Important information

1. A Single Supplement to have your own room is available to purchase and is valid for all nights spent in hotels on your trip. While in homestays single rooms will be subject to availability. 2. Please bring 2 passport size photographs for your trekking permit. 3. Pleas note that only Hindus are allowed to enter the inner sanctuary of Pashupatinath Temple. 4. Between June and August, it is monsoon season in Nepal. If you do choose to travel during this time, please note that you will encounter wet conditions, obscured views, and an extra leech or two. During the monsoon, there is a chance that your itinerary may be adjusted pending water levels in rivers. Don't forget to pack rain proof jackets and trousers. Please see alternative monsoon season itinerary in the weather section of these notes. 5. As the Hartalika Teej festival date is determined by the Hindu lunar calendar, we cannot guarantee the 2020 departure date until approximately mid April when the festival date will officially be released. 6. A minimum of 3 travellers is required for departures of this trip to run.

Group leader

All Intrepid group trips are accompanied by one of our group leaders. The aim of the group leader is to take the hassle out of your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. Intrepid endeavours to provide the services of an experienced leader however, due to the seasonality of travel, rare situations may arise where your leader is new to a particular region or training other group leaders. Your leader will provide information on the places you are travelling through, offer suggestions for things to do and see, recommend great local eating venues and introduce you to our local friends. While not being guides in the traditional sense you can expect them to have a broad general knowledge of the places visited on the trip, including historical, cultural, religious and social aspects. At Intrepid we aim to support local guides who have specialised knowledge of the regions we visit. If you were interested in delving deeper into the local culture at a specific site or location then your leader can recommend a local guide service in most of the main destinations of your trip.

Safety

Many national governments provide a regularly updated advice service on safety issues involved with international travel. We recommend that you check your government's advice for their latest travel information before departure and ensure that your travel insurance covers you for all areas your itinerary covers. Please refer to our website's safety page for links to major travel advisories and updates on safety issues affecting our trip. We strongly recommend the use of a neck wallet or money belt while travelling, for the safe-keeping of your passport, air tickets, cash and other valuable items. Leave your valuable jewellery at home - you won't need it while travelling. Many of our hotels have safety deposit boxes, which is the most secure way of storing your valuables. A lock is recommended for securing your luggage. Your leader will accompany you on all included activities, however during your trip you'll have some free time to pursue your own interests, relax and take it easy or explore at your leisure. While your leader will assist you with the available options in a given location, please note that any optional activities you undertake are not part of your Intrepid itinerary, and Intrepid makes no representations about the safety of the activity or the standard of the operators running them. Please use your own good judgement when selecting an activity in your free time. Please also note that your Leader has the authority to amend or cancel any part of the trip itinerary if it's deemed necessary due to safety concerns. For more details on the type of conditions and safety standards you can expect on your trip, please refer to Intrepid's operational safety policy on our website. We recommend that you take a moment to read through this information before travelling, and would appreciate any feedback on how well it's being implemented in the field:

Communications

WIFI: Hotels in Kathmandu generally have excellent WiFi connections. Most hotels offer free WiFi in public areas, with some also offering in room WIFI, sometimes for an additional fee. While trekking WiFi may be available in tea houses and lodges for a small cost. The higher you go the more the use of WiFi and internet will cost, and likely the slower the speed. Your tour leader will be able to offer some advice on communications in remote areas of the country. Please note that most teahouses do not have electrical outlets in rooms to charge devices but are shared in the main dining area, for an additional fee. Past travellers have found portable solar chargers to be very useful.

Visas

Visas are the responsibility of the individual traveller. Entry requirements can change at any time, so it's important that you check for the latest information. Please visit the relevant consular website of the country or countries you’re visiting for detailed and up-to-date visa information specific to your nationality. Your consultant will also be happy to point you in the right direction with acquiring visas. Visas can take several weeks to process, so familiarise yourself with any requirements as soon as you have booked your trip to allow for processing time. NEPAL: All foreign nationals (except Indian passport holders) require a visa to enter Nepal. Visas are obtainable from embassies abroad, land borders (including borders with India & Tibet) and on arrival at Kathmandu's Tribhuvan Airport. Getting a visa at the airport or land borders can sometimes take time due to long queues. There have been instances when travellers are asked to show proof of exit from the country, ie flight tickets. You may also need to provide two passport photos and the following fees in US dollars (subject to change, cash only). Other currencies are also accepted although rates may differ. The following costs were correct at time of writing: - Multi entry visa valid for 15 days - US$25 - Multi entry visa valid for 30 days - US$40 - Multi entry visa valid for 90 days - US$100 Please note if you are staying in Nepal for less than 24 hours while in transit, a transit visa can be issued on presentation of your international flight ticket, there is a nominal charge of US$5 and one photo is required. Your visa application form may require you to state the dates on which you enter and exit that country. Please note we suggest you list your date of entry a few days before, and date of exit a few days after your intended dates in case you encounter any delays or problems en route. To help calculate the exact dates of these crossings we have found the website www.timeanddate.com to be very useful.

Why we love it

Enjoy a five-day hike in the stunning Annapurnas, while being completely supported by an all-female crew of leaders, guides, assistants, and even porters.

Is this trip right for you

While far less challenging than Everest Base Camp, you will still need a high level of fitness for the trekking portion of this trip, as you will be walking for between five to seven hours per day. For a large portion of the trek you will be ascending and descending uneven ancient stone steps. We recommend the use of hiking poles which you can bring or purchase for very low costs in country. While you’re trekking, you’ll be provided with a duffel bag that a female porter will carry for you. Your porter can carry up to 8 kilograms per traveller and any other luggage can be left in Pokhara to collect at the end of the trek. While on a map we aren't travelling particularly far, the reality of road travel in Nepal is that things always take longer than you expect. Some roads will be bumpy, dusty, or even unexpectedly blocked requiring reroutes and plenty of patience – but that’s all part of the adventure. To make the most of your time in Nepal, we take domestic flights when we have long distances to cross. Accommodation in some destinations may vary in standard and facilities and on occasion hot water may be limited. In more remote parts of Nepal, it may be practical to eat at the hotel restaurant rather than heading out for optional meals. While there will be opportunities to spot many different kinds of wildlife in the national parks, you are not guaranteed to see specific animals – they’re in the wild after all, so they’ll have their own agendas. You may be offered an elephant ride during your time in Chitwan. Intrepid Travel has a strong elephant welfare policy and as such we discourage travellers from riding elephants in Nepal or anywhere around the world. See Intrepid’s Animal Welfare policy for more information. While we would love to open up these unique experiences to all our travellers regardless of gender, it’s simply not yet possible to do so while operating in a socially responsible and culturally sensitive manner. If you're interested in travelling to Nepal on a similar itinerary, check out some of other itineraries or consider booking a private group tour.

Health

All travellers need to be in good physical health in order to participate fully on this trip. When selecting your trip please make sure you have read through the itinerary carefully and assess your ability to cope with our style of travel. Please note that if, in the opinion of our group leader or local guide, any traveller is unable to complete the itinerary without undue risk to themselves and/or the rest of the group, Intrepid Travel reserves the right to exclude them from all or part of a trip without refund. You should consult your doctor for up-to-date medical travel information or for any necessary vaccinations before departure. We recommend that you carry a first aid kit as well as any personal medical requirements as they may not easily be obtained at the locations on this trip. Please ensure that you are adequately prepared. AIR POLLUTION: Air quality in Nepal can be poor, especially in winter. Some towns, including Kathmandu, experience very high levels of seasonal smog and heavy particulate pollution. Seek medical advice if you're concerned about the effects of air pollution. ALTITUDE SICKNESS: Travellers to altitudes higher than 2,500m are at risk of altitude sickness, also known as acute mountain sickness (AMS). This can be life threatening and affect anyone, even people who are very physically fit. There is a higher risk for those who have had altitude sickness before, who exercise or drink alcohol before adjusting to the altitude, or who have health problems that affect breathing. If your tour travels to high altitude, see your doctor for advice specific to you and your situation before you depart. It is important to be aware of the normal altitude symptoms that you may encounter BUT NOT worry about: - Periods of sleeplessness - Occasional loss of appetite - Vivid, wild dreams at around 2500-3800m in altitude - Unexpected momentary shortness of breath, day and night - Periodic breathing that wakes you occasionally - Blocked nose - Dry cough - Mild headache If you are feeling nauseous, dizzy or experience other symptoms, please be sure to let your group leader know immediately so that we can monitor your condition. Please be aware that should your group leader deem it unsafe for you to continue trekking at any time, they will arrange for you to descend to a lower attitude. Please read the following document carefully and, during your trip, utilise the table on the back daily to record your own perspective of your general health and any symptoms you may experience: https://www.intrepidtravel.com/altitude-sickness On some days this trip may ascend faster than commonly published recommended ascent rates at altitude. However, based upon an assessment by our external safety and medical advisors, and in conjunction with our own risk assessments we consider that the ascent rate is acceptable due to the additional safety measures that are in place for our customers. If you have concerns about this, please speak to your booking representative. All our leaders in the Himalayas are trained in the use of a PAC bag (Portable Altitude Chamber) and this is carried on all trips which go above 4,200m. The PAC bag is used in an emergency only to treat altitude sickness in the mountains. A First Aid kit is carried with the group and all our leaders are First Aid trained. Please ensure that your travel insurance policy does cover you up to the maximum altitude on this trip, and includes helicopter evacuation. Please take proof of this with you on the trip, as you will need to show it to the leader. MOSQUITO-BORNE ILLNESSES: Malaria is a risk in some areas of Nepal including Chitwan National Park. Dengue fever and Japanese encephalitis also occur, including on occasion in Kathmandu. Protect yourself against insect bites by wearing adequate protection, including repellent. MEDICAL FACILITIES AND TREATMENT: Medical facilities in Nepal are very limited, particularly outside Kathmandu. In Kathmandu, treatment at international-standard clinics is expensive and up-front payment for services is generally required. Make sure you have adequate travel health insurance and accessible funds to cover the cost of any medical treatment, including evacuation by helicopter.

Food and dietary requirements

FOOD IN NEPAL: We do not include meals while trekking, allowing you to choose what you want to eat and when. We know from experience that the altitude and physical exercise can meal trekker's appetites differ quite widely. The menus in the teahouses are varied, ranging from traditional Nepalese dhal bhat to pizza and apple pie. Vegetarians are well catered for in Nepal. How much you need to spend per day will vary, but it could be anything up to US$60 per day for meals, snacks and drinks. Prices tend to get higher the higher you go on trek in response to the difficulty of getting supplies to the teahouses. In Kathmandu and Pokhara there are plenty of restaurants and cafes for all tastes and budgets. For a glimpse at what traditional Nepali cuisine entails, check out our guide here: https://www.intrepidtravel.com/adventures/guide-to-nepali-cuisine/ ALCOHOL & CAFFEINE: Alcohol and trekking don't mix. We highly recommend that you limit your alcohol consumption in Kathmandu prior to your trip. Celebrate your achievements after your trek. Both alcohol and caffeine increase dehydration. Limit your intake of both when hiking at high altitudes.

Money matters

SPENDING MONEY: When it comes to spending money on the trip, every traveller is a little different. You know your spending habits better than we do, so please budget a sensible amount for things like meals not included, drinks, shopping, optional activities and laundry. It's always better to bring a little more than you think you'll need. Also make sure you've read your trip details thoroughly so you know what's included in the trip price and what isn't. This should make budgeting a little easier. You'll find this info in the Inclusions section of your Essential Trip Information (that's this document). NEPAL: The official currency of Nepal is the Nepali rupee (NPR). Its symbol is often displayed as Rs. USD are also widely accepted in Nepal. ATMs can only be found in Kathmandu, Pokhara, and Bhaktapur. Make sure you carry sufficient cash to cover your needs when travelling outside of these cities. Money exchange facilities are available in Kathmandu, Namche, Pokhara, Chitwan (only outside the park) and Bhaktapur. Credit cards are not widely accepted. The Government of Nepal has banned the import, export and use of 500 and 1000 Indian rupee notes in Nepal. You should ensure you are not carrying these notes on arrival in Nepal as they will be confiscated and you may be fined. Please note that most establishments in Asia will not accept foreign currency notes that are old, torn or faded and they can be very difficult to exchange or extra fees added when exchanging at banks. Please ensure that you have new, clean notes. Before departing on a trek, make sure you have enough Nepalese currency to purchase meals and drinks, in the smaller denominations where possible, as there are no ATMs and larger notes (such as 1000R) can be difficult to change. CONTINGENCY FUNDS: We try to plan for every eventuality, but there are still some things beyond our control. Please make sure you have access to an extra US$500 for emergencies (e.g. severe weather, natural disasters, civil unrest) or other events that result in unavoidable changes to the itinerary (e.g. transport strikes or cancellations, airport closures). Sometimes these things necessitate last minute changes to enable our trips to continue to run, and as a result there may be some extra costs involved.

What to take

TREKKING EQUIPMENT Trekking boots (broken in) Waterproof 3/4 season jacket and trousers (can be hired/purchased in Kathmandu) Good quality socks Thermal underwear/layers Down jacket (can be hired/purchased in Kathmandu) Trousers - lightweight, loose fitting, trekking trousers. Shorts or skirt for summer Sleeveless fleece and extra layers for winter departures (Dec-Feb) Warm hat and sun hat Sunglasses with UV protection Head torch (spare batteries) Sunscreen and lip balm Light weight towel Sarong Personal first aid kit Biodegradable wet wipes/toilet paper Hand sanitizer gel Trail mix/nuts/muesli bars Hot water bottle (winter months) Daypack - Must have the capacity for the items you may be carrying on a day's walk: rain jacket, trousers, warm clothing, water bottle, camera equipment, washing items and other personal effects. A hip/waist strap provides additional comfort. You should consider day packs of at least a 30 to 40 litre capacity. OTHER PACKING GUIDES: For other guides to packing for treks: https://www.intrepidtravel.com/adventures/packing-guide-for-trekking-in-nepal/ If you are spending further time in the region, please see some ideas for regular travelling gear to pack. https://www.intrepidtravel.com/packing-list

Climate and seasonal

SEASONAL INFORMATION: Nepal's climate varies greatly depending on the season: JUN - SEP: the monsoon rains (mostly at night) bring landslides in regional areas. Cloud cover often obscures mountain views with rain, mud and leeches deterring most trekkers at this time of year. Treks running in September can be hot and very humid at lower altitudes. See what it's like to trek during monsoon here: https://www.intrepidtravel.com/adventures/nepal-during-monsoon-season/ MAR - APR: Spring brings warm weather and spectacular rhododendron blooms. A popular time to visit and one of the peak times to trek. OCT - NOV: Clear skies and warm days make autumn the peak season. DEC - FEB: Winter brings cold temperatures and snow to the mountains. Good trekking, but remember to rug up. ALTERNATIVE ITINERARY During the monsoon season in the Annapurna region (June-Sep) we may trek an alternative route. This itinerary keeps the group away from areas that are prone to flooding and landslides. Safety is the number one priority when trekking in Nepal and any changes will be discussed by your trek leader. Please see as below for a brief overview of a possible alternative itinerary: DAY 1: Pokhara-Naya Pul (45 kms/1.5 hrs drive), Naya Pul-Ulleri (5 hrs) Drive to Naya Pul. Meet the trailhead and proceed downhill to Birethanti (1025m). Walk gently uphill for a couple of hours to Hille (1475m). Overnight stop at Ulleri (1960m). DAY 2: Ulleri-Ghorepani (5 hrs) Uphill walk to Ghorepani (2750m). continue climbing and descending to Banthanti (2300m),  more stairs before we emerge at Nangathanti (2520m). From here on, another hour of climb will get you to Ghorepani (2750m). DAY 3: Ghorepani-Tadapani (5 hrs) Pre-dawn hike up to Poon Hill at 3190m (45mins). marvel at the view of the Dhaulagiri & Annapurna Range. Return back to your teahouse to collect your baggage and hit the trail to Tadapani (2590m). The trail continues along the ridge line with magnificent views of the Annapurnas stretching out from east to west. Descend before climbing through dense forest to Tadapani (2700m). DAY 4: Tadapani-Ghandruk (3 hrs) It’s a relatively short day’s trek, starting on a trail that contours the forested hillside descending steadily with some steep downhill sections. Reaching a small settlement of Bhaisi Kharka where the two routes to Ghandruk converges; continue to descend until you meet the path following the Kyunri Khola. Crossing the stream, a brief walk leads to Ghandruk through the northern edge of the village. Ghandruk (1940m) is a delightful, ornate 'Gurung' village which has grown large and prosperous on the pensions of re-tired Gurkha soldiers.From Ghandruk, dramatic views of the peaks of Annapurna South, Gangapurna, Hiunchuli and the all-so-famous Machhapuchhre (Fishtail Mountain) opens up. DAY 5: Ghandruk-Nayapul (4 hrs)-Pokhara (1.5 hrs drive) Leaving Ghandruk, a steep descent to the trail junction.  We make a short descent to the village of Chane. Another long stretch of downhill pathways, arrive in Syauli Bazaar before continuing to Birethanti. Not long after we join our vehicles to return to Pokhara. 

A couple of rules

Everyone has the right to feel safe when they travel. We don’t tolerate any form of violence (verbal or physical) or sexual harassment, either between customers or involving our leaders, partners or local people. Sexual relationships between a tour leader and a customer are strictly forbidden. Use or possession of illegal drugs will not be tolerated on our trips. If you choose to consume alcohol while travelling, we encourage responsible drinking, and expect that you’ll abide by the local laws regarding alcohol consumption. The sex tourism industry is known to exploit vulnerable people and have negative consequences on communities, including undermining the development of sustainable tourism. For this reason, patronising sex workers will not be tolerated on our trips. By travelling with us you are agreeing to adhere to these rules. Your group leader has the right to remove any member of the group for breaking any of these rules, with no right of refund. If you feel that someone is behaving inappropriately while travelling with us, please inform your tour leader or local guide immediately. Alternatively, contact us on the emergency contact number detailed in the Problems and Emergency Contact section of this Essential Trip Information.

Feedback

After your travels, we want to hear from you! We rely on your feedback. We read it carefully. Feedback helps us understand what we are doing well and what we could be doing better. It allows us to make improvements for future travellers. http://www.intrepidtravel.com/feedback/

Emergency contact

In the case of a genuine crisis or emergency please contact our local office in Kathmandu: For general contact details please use the following page: http://www.intrepidtravel.com/ourtrips/contact/ While we always endeavour to provide the best possible holiday experience, due to the nature of travel and the areas we visit sometimes things can and do go wrong. Should any issue occur while you are on your trip, it is imperative that you discuss this with your group leader or our local representative straight away so that they can do their best to rectify the problem and save any potential negative impact on the rest of your trip. We recognise that there may be times when your group leader/local partner may not be able to resolve a situation to your satisfaction - if this is the case, please ask the leader to speak to their direct manager. You may also choose to provide details in your online feedback, which we ask you to complete within 30 days of the end of your trip. But we do ask you to be aware that it is very difficult for us to provide any practical help after the trip is complete. Nepal Emergency contact: +977 980 112 3617

Responsible travel

We believe strongly in low impact or rather positive impact tourism. Broadly speaking this means that we try to minimise the negative aspects of tourism on the local cultures and environments that we visit and highlight the positive aspects. Please visit our website for further details and suggestions on how you can be a responsible traveller. http://www.intrepidtravel.com/ourtrips/rt/responsibletraveller NEPAL Dress codes are quite relaxed in tourist areas of Kathmandu and Pokhara, but much more conservative in other parts of the country. Remove shoes before entering certain temples and holy places and be aware that non-Hindus may not be permitted at some religious sites. Dress modestly, take care not to offend and ask your leader if you are unsure if something is appropriate. PORTERS: Our porters are valued members of our trekking teams. We operate our treks according to standards that provide respectful, safe and fair working conditions not only in Nepal, but on all our trips globally. For more information on porter welfare, see https://www.intrepidtravel.com/au/porter-policy

The Intrepid Foundation

Help us change thousands of lives by creating meaningful work and supporting skills training in communities around the world. The Intrepid Foundation is the not-for-profit for Intrepid Group. We work with local organisations around the world to improve the livelihoods of vulnerable individuals and communities through sustainable travel experiences. With our travellers’ help, we’ve contributed more than AU $6 million to over 100 community organisations since 2002. Did you know that tourism is one of the biggest contributors to the global economy, making up 1 out of every 10 jobs? That’s why we support local projects that create meaningful jobs and give people the skills they need to work in the destinations we take you to. And it’s why we exist – to make it easy for travellers to give back to the communities and places they’ve been in an effective and meaningful way. All donations to The Intrepid Foundation are matched by Intrepid Group dollar for dollar (up to AU$10,000 per donor and AU$500,000 in total each financial year, excluding emergency appeals). And because Intrepid Group covers all administration costs, every cent goes directly to the projects. Donating is simple and secure. Please ask your leader for information about the projects we support through The Intrepid Foundation or visit our website: http://www.theintrepidfoundation.org/ Organisations and projects currently supported by The Intrepid Foundation in Nepal include: *Forget Me Not Forget Me Not rescue and reintegrate ‘paper orphans’ to be thriving, vibrant and connected to family, community and opportunity. In Nepal, there are currently 16,886 children in orphanages and up to 80% could be raised by at least one of their parents if given support. Many of the children have been taken from their families, trafficked into orphanages and used to generate funds. Last year Forget Me Not received 27% of all children rescued from orphanages in Nepal. Rescued children are given complete medical care including psychological, physical and overall wellbeing assessments. Individual case plans are developed and missions determined to trace each child’s family and work towards reunification and reintegration. https://www.theintrepidfoundation.org/projects/forget-me-not/ *Seven Women works to economically and socially empower marginalised women in Nepal through literacy programs, skills training and income generation. www.theintrepidfoundation.org/projects/seven-women/ https://www.intrepidtravel.com/adventures/meet-kathmandus-hidden-artisans-the-extraordinary-seven-women/ For more information on our projects in Nepal, or to make a donation, visit: http://www.theintrepidfoundation.org/projects/?projectcountry=nepal

Accommodation notes

TEAHOUSES: Accommodation at local lodges - better known as teahouses - are simple but comfortable. Toilets and washing facilities are shared and rudimentary, and the food is plain and filling. In a teahouse, travellers are provided with small twin share rooms with twin beds, mattresses and pillows. At times, in high seasons, and in places where there are limited number of teahouses, travellers may have to make do with dormitories. In some places, teahouses don't have access to electricity, depending on solar powered lighting instead. In more remote regions, teahouses don't have running water and toilets can mean just a hole in the ground. Hot shower facilities are available in some teahouses for a price but occasionally a hot shower means a bucket of hot water, enough to wash your body. Electricity to charge devices as well as WiFi is usually for an additional fee when available.

Transport notes

KATHMANDU AIRPORT CLOSURES: Kathmandu's Tribhuvan International Airport (KTM), Nepal's only international airport, will partially close beginning in April 2019 for repairs to its sole runway. The 3050 m (10,007 ft) runway will be repaved beginning the first week of April and construction is expected to be completed before June 2019. KTM will close daily from 22:00 (local time) to 08:00. Following the runway re-construction, work will begin on the taxiway. Flight disruptions are possible during the construction period. Trips that included flights to/from Lukla will be affected, as flights can't operate in the morning hours. From 1st April - 1st June 2019 we will arrive/depart from Ramechhap (also known as Manthali) Airport instead of Kathmandu. The airport is located 130km (approx. 4-5 hours drive) from Kathmandu. For customers traveling to or from Nepal during the anticipated construction time we advise to confirm the status of their flight and anticipate possible flight delays and disruptions. AIR TRAVEL: Flights between Kathmandu and Lukla are often delayed due to poor weather and there have been occasions when groups have had to have their treks rescheduled. Your local leader will give you the most up to date information regarding delays to flights. Nepal's only international airport, Tribhuvan International Airport, has a single runway that services both domestic and international flights. Cancellations and delays are frequent, especially during peak tourist seasons or in poor weather. Travellers have on occasion missed international connections as a result of this, particularly if flights from Lukla to Kathmandu are delayed. Ensure you have adequate travel insurance and contact numbers for your airlines before departure. LUGGAGE LIMITS: Domestic flights in Nepal have strict weight limits - 10kg of check-in luggage and 5kg of carry-on hand luggage per person is included with your flight ticket. Excess baggage (up to 5kg per person only) will be charged at your own expense. TRAVEL BETWEEN KATHMANDU & POKHARA: On itineraries that include road travel between these destinations, past travellers have often decided to fly this route independently to avoid the long overland journey (200km, approx 6+ hours). The flight takes around 35mins. Should you decide to fly, this will be at your own expense with no refunds for road travel available. ROAD TRAVEL: Roadworks and infrastructure projects can cause significant delays on major roads within cities and highways between destinations. Road travel can also be disrupted due to demonstrations and bandhs (strikes) without warning. Major roadworks are currently ongoing in and around Kathmandu and the roads to Chitwan National Park. Delays, heavy traffic, poor road conditions and dust are a reality of road travel in Nepal. MONSOON: The monsoon season is from June to September and weather conditions can disrupt travel during this time due to flooding and landslides. Disruption of air travel and airport closures are also possible. Be prepared that the itinerary may need to change at short notice.

Travel insurance

Travel insurance is compulsory for all our trips. We require that, at a minimum, you are covered for medical expenses including emergency repatriation. We strongly recommend that the policy also covers personal liability, cancellation, curtailment and loss of luggage and personal effects. When travelling on a trip, you won't be permitted to join the group until evidence of travel insurance and the insurance company's 24 hour emergency contact number has been seen by your leader. If you have credit card insurance your group leader will require details of the participating insurer/underwriter, the level of coverage, policy number and emergency contact number rather than the bank's name and credit card details. Please contact your bank for these details prior to arriving in-country. http://www.intrepidtravel.com/insurance.php

Your fellow travellers

As you travel on a group trip you will be exposed to all the pleasures and maybe some of the frustrations of travelling in a group. Your fellow travellers will probably come from all corners of the world and likely a range of age groups too. We ask you to be understanding of the various needs and preferences of your group - patience with your fellow travellers is sometimes required for the benefit of everyone's travel experience. Remember too that you have responsibilities to the group. If you are requested to be at a place at a certain time, ensure that you don't keep the rest of the group waiting. We have found time and time again that the very best trips we operate are those where the dynamics within the group work well - this takes just a little effort on your part. Due to privacy reasons we are unable to provide you with contact details and any personal information about your fellow travellers booked on your trip prior to departure.

Itinerary disclaimer

ITINERARY CHANGES: Our itineraries are updated regularly throughout the year based on customer feedback and to reflect the current situation in each destination. The information included in this Essential Trip Information may therefore differ from when you first booked your trip. It is important that you print and review a final copy prior to travel so that you have the latest updates. Due to weather, local conditions, transport schedules, public holidays or other factors, further changes may be necessary to your itinerary once in country. The order and timing of included activities in each location may also vary seasonally to ensure our travellers have the best experience. Your tour leader will keep you up to date with any changes once on tour. OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES: A selection of optional activities that have been popular with past travellers are listed in the day-to-day itinerary. This isn't an exhaustive list and should be used as a guide only for some of what might be available. Prices are approximate, are for entrance only, and don’t include transport to and from the sites or local guides unless indicated. All activities are subject to availability. It may not be possible to do all the activities listed in the time available at each destination, so some pre-planning for what you are most interested in is advised. When it's recommended that travellers pre-book these activities, look for a note in the Special Information section of the day-to-day itinerary. For most, they can either be organised independently on the day, or let your leader know you are interested and they can assist. Where activities are considered medium or high risk, we work with operators whose safety and credentials we have sighted and assessed. Although it is possible that you may find the same activity cheaper with another operator on the ground, we cannot vouch for the safety or quality of that operator. Medium and high risk activities not listed above have not been assessed by us and as such our staff and leaders are unable to assist you with organising these activities. Activities that contravene our Responsible Travel policies are also not listed. Please remember that the decision to partake in any activity not listed is at your own discretion and risk.

Accommodation

Hotel (4 nights),Guesthouse (2 nights),Homestay (5 nights),Jungle Resort (1 night)

Map

Itinerary

Day 1Kathmandu
Namaste! Welcome to Kathmandu. Your Nepal Women’s Only Expedition will begin with a welcome meeting held at the hotel at 6pm – please check with the hotel reception to find out where it will be. After the welcome meeting, join your local leader and other members of your group for an included dinner – your leader will take you to a local restaurant where you’ll have the opportunity to enjoy local delicacies like momos and dal bhat and see a traditional dance performance.
Day 2Kathmandu
This morning you’ll take a cooking class at Seven Women, an organisation supported by The Intrepid Foundation that socially and economically empowers marginalised women in Nepal through a variety of education programs, skills training and income generation. While the initiative started with just seven participants, to date over 5,000 women have been educated, trained and employed by Seven Women. In the cooking class, you’ll learn how to make some delicious Nepali dishes and have the chance to talk to these amazing local women who have overcome discrimination to turn their lives around. Full after the lunch you prepared, you can enjoy a free afternoon exploring Kathmandu. You may want to check out popular sites like the Royal Palace Hanuman Dhoka or the Garden of Dreams. Your leader will also be able to recommend some lesser-known gems to explore. Tonight, you’ll head to The Village Café for an included group dinner. The Village Café allows women who would otherwise be based at home to earn a living cooking traditional Nepali cuisine, using ingredients they have grown in their own fields.
Day 3Pokhara
After breakfast this morning you’ll visit the Restless Development office in Kathmandu to learn about how this project is trying to eliminate Chhaupadi pratice in Nepal. Chhaupadi is a tradition associated with menstrual taboo in the western part of Nepal, which prohibits Hindu women and girls from participating in normal family activities while menstruating, as they are considered impure. The women are banned from the house and are required to live in a cattle shed or menstruation hut for the duration of their period. During this time, women and girls are restricted from participating in everyday life events, and from interacting with their communities and also risk their lives due to the poor ventilation conditions in the huts and sheds. After lunch you’ll take a 30-minute flight to Pokhara in Central Nepal. Once your feet are back on the ground, your leader will take you for an orientation walk around the the lakeside area to an elaborate Hindu temple and a Buddhist monastery. We'll walk along the lake (Phewa Tal), the second largest in Nepal, and take in spectacular views of the Annapurnas and the famous fishtail peak, Machhapuchhare. Tonight, you’ll stay at 3 Sisters Guesthouse, owned by three sisters who work to promote and empower socially disadvantaged women through adventure tourism. They provide skills-based training programs with gainful employment opportunities to encourage other women to become self-supportive and independent.
Day 4Pokhara/Kalikasthan - Yangjakot trek (1440m)
This morning you’ll embark on a scenic hour and a half long drive to the outlying village of Kalikasthan, a perfect starting point for a hike in the Nepalese mountains. Here, you’ll meet your all-female hiking crew made up of a mountain guide, assistant guides, and porters. They will lead you into a world of friendly villagers, terraced fields, alpine meadows and rhododendron forests set before a back-drop of snow-clad peaks. Begin with a two-hour walk down to the Modi River, where you’ll pass through delightful little villages and enjoy mesmerising vistas of the Lamjung Himal and Annapurna II mountains. From here, it’s another three-hours of walking to the village of Yangjakot where we spend the night in a local homestay to get a real insight into village life.
Day 5Yangjakot - Tanting trek (1580m)
This morning you’ll leave the homestay and make a gradual descent back down to the Modi Valley to the village of Chasu, which takes about three hours. Here there’ll be an opportunity to rest and refuel before undertaking the two-hour ascent to the terraced fields to Tanting. This Gurung village is typical of the raw beauty of traditional Nepalese hillside villages. Tonight, you’ll spend the night in another homestay, with plenty of opportunities for local interaction.
Day 6Tanting - Sikles trek (1980m)
This morning you’ll trek to Sikles, which takes about four hours in total and is your final destination for the day. This village is full of welcoming locals, picturesque terraced fields, alpine meadows and views of the giants of the Annapurnas section of the Himalayas: Annapurna IV which is 7,525 metres high and Annapurna II which towers at 7,937m, as well as the monolithic hulk of Lamjung Himal. There are many optional activities to fill your afternoon. If you haven’t had enough walking over the past few days, you can hike to viewpoints, pop into the small but charming Eco-Museum in Sikles, or just soak up the rhythm of local life. You can also help the host at your homestay with the daily chores, perhaps getting your hands dirty on the farm.
Day 7Sikles to Ghalegaun trek (1620m)
Set out on the longest section of your trek. Leave the village in the morning and enter deep woods trekking westwards with snow-capped peaks to your right. From here, you’ll make the steep climb up to a grassy wooded knoll known as Tara Top, which will take about four hours in total. This is the vantage-point for a spectacular 360-degree view that encompasses most of the Annapurna mountain chain. From here, you’ll descend for three hours through the shady forests of mossy rhododendron with wild flowers on the sunnier banks and wild orchids attached to the branches above, before arriving at Ghalegaun. A homestay in Ghalegaun will be your well-earned resting place for the night.
Day 8Ghalegaun to Bhurjung Khola trek/Pokhara
This morning is your last day of trekking for the trip. After breakfast, head down to Bhurjung Khola, an arm of the Seti River. You’ll follow it south until you reach the road, which will take about two hours. From here, your private vehicle will be here to take you back to Pokhara, an hour and a half long journey. You’ll have a free afternoon and evening to relax and enjoy everything Pokhara has to offer. Treat yourself to a massage as a reward for all your hard work or maybe shop for a red sari as is traditionally worn by local women over upcoming Teej festival.
Day 9Madi Valley
Enjoy a free morning before boarding the 20-minute afternoon flight to Chitwan. From here, you’ll take a two-and-a-half-hour drive to Madi Valley. Tonight, we’ll be staying at Intrepid’s community based tourism project, the Madi Valley Homestay program. This project provides sustainable income and encourages the communities living on the fringes of Chitwan National Park to conserve the wilderness and wildlife around them. On our arrival, the local women, dressed in their traditional Magar attire, will be there to greet you and welcome you into their homes. In the evening the women will teach you to cook local dishes to enjoy for dinner as a group. It’s also a great opportunity to chat to the women about their lives and work. After dinner, you’ll be treated to a cultural performance by the local women, where they demonstrate one of the oldest ethnic dance forms of the Magar community; the Maruni Naach.
Day 10Chitwan National Park
After breakfast, you’ll be driven to Chitwan National Park for a half-day safari. Upon arrival, you’ll be introduced to the camp staff and resident naturalists, who will take you on a safari through the forests and across grasslands to observe the varied and exciting wildlife in the park. In the afternoon, you’ll make the drive to Kasara Jungle Resort, your luxurious home for the evening in the heart of the national park. You’ll have time to relax or the option of a swim or spa treatment. You may want to join some of the group in the bar before an included dinner at the resort restaurant, where you can discuss the day’s sightings or listen to the exotic sounds of the jungle at night.
Day 11Chitwan National Park - Kathmandu
This morning you’ll leave Chitwan and take the hour and a half drive in a private vehicle to Tharu Village. Here you’ll have the opportunity to learn about the lifestyles of the Tharu women and observe a cookery demonstration of the local cuisine, before sharing lunch together. From here, you’ll drive to Chitwan Airport and take an hour and a half flight back to Kathmandu.
Day 12Hartalika Teej Festival
Today you’ll rise early for a three-hour trek to Buddhanikantha, a 30-minute drive from Kathmandu. On the way you’ll see everything from beautiful waterfalls to bustling village bazaars, before ending at the Hidden Monastery for lunch with the Buddhist nuns there. Upon your return to Kathmandu in the afternoon, you’ll prepare to take part in a very special celebration – Hartalika Teej, the fasting festival exclusive to the women of Nepal. During the festival, Nepalese women will dress in beautiful red sarees, fast throughout the day, and pray to Lord Shiva, one of the three main Hindu gods, for a happy marriage. Join the local women as they sing and dance their way to Pashupatinath Temple, located on the bank of the holy Bagmati River. It is the most important Hindu temple in Nepal and is exclusively accessible to women over Hartalika Teej Festival.
Day 13Kathmandu
Today is the final day of your women’s expedition in Nepal. There are no included activities planned, so you’re welcome to check out of the hotel any time before midday. If you are departing later, you can arrange luggage storage at the hotel until your flight. If you decide to stay an extra couple of days in Kathmandu, there are plenty of activities in and around the city to enjoy, as well as many Urban Adventures on offer. https://www.urbanadventures.com/destination/kathmandu-tours

Trip title

Nepal: Women's Expedition

Trip code

HNSW

Validity

Validity: 01 Jan 2019 to 31 Dec 2019

Introduction

Through a mix of festival celebrations, cultural experiences and trekking in the Himalayas, this women’s only expedition will give you a unique insight into the diverse lives of Nepalese women. Meet a wide range of female trailblazers, from chefs at a social enterprise, women campaigning to end discrimination against women who are menstruating, to an all-female crew of mountain guides and porters. Hear a range of inspiring personal stories and spend some time reconnecting with nature at a female-run village homestay on the fringes of Chitwan National Park, which is helping to conserve wildlife in the area. You’ll also have the chance to take part in the Hartalika Teej Festival alongside the locals, a three-day women’s only Hindu celebration.

Style

Original

Themes

Expedition

Transport

Private vehicle,Plane

Physical Rating

4

Physical preparation

For the trek on this trip the general rule is you will need to be very fit, and the more preparation you have done for it the more you will enjoy it. You will be walking at altitudes of up to approximately 2800 metres above sea level. Whilst this trip isnt as demanding as longer and higher treks into the Annapurna or Everest region, you will be walking with your day pack, with the possibility of variations in temperature. We recommend that you undertake regular aerobic exercise in the months before you travel, particularly if you are not in the habit of regular exercise. Doing mountain walks or climbing long stair cases with a pack is good preparation (try putting a few bricks in your pack for real training). Walking, jogging, swimming or riding a bike are all good ways to increase your aerobic fitness, which will allow you to enjoy the trek to its fullest.

Joining point

Hotel Moonlight

Joining point description

The Hotel Moonlight is situated on the edge of Thamel near the bustling downtown area of Kathmandu. the hotel features a quiet courtyard garden and a rooftop terrace with great views over Kathmandu. 46 rooms with LCD TV, individually controlled A/C, room service, telephone and gym. There is free wifi throughout the hotel. The hotel has a restaurant serving Nepali and international cuisine as well as a bar.

Joining point instructions

Please refer to your itinerary for the joining hotel name and address. If you have not pre-booked an arrival transfer you will find taxis available on arrival at Kathmandu's Tribhuvan International Airport There are two pre-paid taxi booths inside the terminal, one on each side as you exit the baggage claim area. They have fixed rates of NPR600 to anywhere in the Thamel area from 6am-8pm and NPR800 from 8pm-6am. Otherwise you will need to bargain hard from the taxi rank outside of the airport - aim for NPR500. The drive into Thamel takes 30 to 40mins depending on the traffic. Please be aware that there may be porters outside the terminal offering their services for a fee. If you do not wish to use their services, be ready to kindly but firmly let them know. Alternatively Intrepid offer a pre-arranged transfer service option. Inquire with your agent and advise your flight arrival details at least 14 days prior to your trip departure. If you have purchased an arrival transfer you will be met after exiting customs outside. Look for our representative holding a sign with your name on it. If you have any trouble locating your transfer rep, or if your flight is going to be delayed, please call the following numbers: +977 980 112 3617 Normal check in time at the hotel is after 12:00.

Finish point

Hotel Moonlight

Finish point instructions

A taxi to the airport will cost about NPR600 from 6am-8pm and NRP800 from 8pm-6am. Hotel reception or your leader can help you organise a taxi. Alternatively Intrepid offer a pre-booked transfer service - enquire at the time of booking. Normal check out time is 12 noon. If you are departing later, you can arrange luggage storage at the hotel.

Important information

1. A Single Supplement to have your own room is available to purchase and is valid for all nights spent in hotels on your trip. While in homestays single rooms will be subject to availability. 2. Please bring 2 passport size photographs for your trekking permit. 3. Pleas note that only Hindus are allowed to enter the inner sanctuary of Pashupatinath Temple. 4. Between June and August, it is monsoon season in Nepal. If you do choose to travel during this time, please note that you will encounter wet conditions, obscured views, and an extra leech or two. During the monsoon, there is a chance that your itinerary may be adjusted pending water levels in rivers. Don't forget to pack rain proof jackets and trousers. Please see alternative monsoon season itinerary in the weather section of these notes. 5. As the Hartalika Teej festival date is determined by the Hindu lunar calendar, we cannot guarantee the 2020 departure date until approximately mid April when the festival date will officially be released. 6. A minimum of 3 travellers is required for departures of this trip to run.

Group leader

All Intrepid group trips are accompanied by one of our group leaders. The aim of the group leader is to take the hassle out of your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. Intrepid endeavours to provide the services of an experienced leader however, due to the seasonality of travel, rare situations may arise where your leader is new to a particular region or training other group leaders. Your leader will provide information on the places you are travelling through, offer suggestions for things to do and see, recommend great local eating venues and introduce you to our local friends. While not being guides in the traditional sense you can expect them to have a broad general knowledge of the places visited on the trip, including historical, cultural, religious and social aspects. At Intrepid we aim to support local guides who have specialised knowledge of the regions we visit. If you were interested in delving deeper into the local culture at a specific site or location then your leader can recommend a local guide service in most of the main destinations of your trip.

Safety

Many national governments provide a regularly updated advice service on safety issues involved with international travel. We recommend that you check your government's advice for their latest travel information before departure and ensure that your travel insurance covers you for all areas your itinerary covers. Please refer to our website's safety page for links to major travel advisories and updates on safety issues affecting our trip. We strongly recommend the use of a neck wallet or money belt while travelling, for the safe-keeping of your passport, air tickets, cash and other valuable items. Leave your valuable jewellery at home - you won't need it while travelling. Many of our hotels have safety deposit boxes, which is the most secure way of storing your valuables. A lock is recommended for securing your luggage. Your leader will accompany you on all included activities, however during your trip you'll have some free time to pursue your own interests, relax and take it easy or explore at your leisure. While your leader will assist you with the available options in a given location, please note that any optional activities you undertake are not part of your Intrepid itinerary, and Intrepid makes no representations about the safety of the activity or the standard of the operators running them. Please use your own good judgement when selecting an activity in your free time. Please also note that your Leader has the authority to amend or cancel any part of the trip itinerary if it's deemed necessary due to safety concerns. For more details on the type of conditions and safety standards you can expect on your trip, please refer to Intrepid's operational safety policy on our website. We recommend that you take a moment to read through this information before travelling, and would appreciate any feedback on how well it's being implemented in the field:

Communications

WIFI: Hotels in Kathmandu generally have excellent WiFi connections. Most hotels offer free WiFi in public areas, with some also offering in room WIFI, sometimes for an additional fee. While trekking WiFi may be available in tea houses and lodges for a small cost. The higher you go the more the use of WiFi and internet will cost, and likely the slower the speed. Your tour leader will be able to offer some advice on communications in remote areas of the country. Please note that most teahouses do not have electrical outlets in rooms to charge devices but are shared in the main dining area, for an additional fee. Past travellers have found portable solar chargers to be very useful.

Visas

Visas are the responsibility of the individual traveller. Entry requirements can change at any time, so it's important that you check for the latest information. Please visit the relevant consular website of the country or countries you’re visiting for detailed and up-to-date visa information specific to your nationality. Your consultant will also be happy to point you in the right direction with acquiring visas. Visas can take several weeks to process, so familiarise yourself with any requirements as soon as you have booked your trip to allow for processing time. NEPAL: All foreign nationals (except Indian passport holders) require a visa to enter Nepal. Visas are obtainable from embassies abroad, land borders (including borders with India & Tibet) and on arrival at Kathmandu's Tribhuvan Airport. Getting a visa at the airport or land borders can sometimes take time due to long queues. There have been instances when travellers are asked to show proof of exit from the country, ie flight tickets. You may also need to provide two passport photos and the following fees in US dollars (subject to change, cash only). Other currencies are also accepted although rates may differ. The following costs were correct at time of writing: - Multi entry visa valid for 15 days - US$25 - Multi entry visa valid for 30 days - US$40 - Multi entry visa valid for 90 days - US$100 Please note if you are staying in Nepal for less than 24 hours while in transit, a transit visa can be issued on presentation of your international flight ticket, there is a nominal charge of US$5 and one photo is required. Your visa application form may require you to state the dates on which you enter and exit that country. Please note we suggest you list your date of entry a few days before, and date of exit a few days after your intended dates in case you encounter any delays or problems en route. To help calculate the exact dates of these crossings we have found the website www.timeanddate.com to be very useful.

Why we love it

Enjoy a five-day hike in the stunning Annapurnas, while being completely supported by an all-female crew of leaders, guides, assistants, and even porters.

Is this trip right for you

While far less challenging than Everest Base Camp, you will still need a high level of fitness for the trekking portion of this trip, as you will be walking for between five to seven hours per day. For a large portion of the trek you will be ascending and descending uneven ancient stone steps. We recommend the use of hiking poles which you can bring or purchase for very low costs in country. While you’re trekking, you’ll be provided with a duffel bag that a female porter will carry for you. Your porter can carry up to 8 kilograms per traveller and any other luggage can be left in Pokhara to collect at the end of the trek. While on a map we aren't travelling particularly far, the reality of road travel in Nepal is that things always take longer than you expect. Some roads will be bumpy, dusty, or even unexpectedly blocked requiring reroutes and plenty of patience – but that’s all part of the adventure. To make the most of your time in Nepal, we take domestic flights when we have long distances to cross. Accommodation in some destinations may vary in standard and facilities and on occasion hot water may be limited. In more remote parts of Nepal, it may be practical to eat at the hotel restaurant rather than heading out for optional meals. While there will be opportunities to spot many different kinds of wildlife in the national parks, you are not guaranteed to see specific animals – they’re in the wild after all, so they’ll have their own agendas. You may be offered an elephant ride during your time in Chitwan. Intrepid Travel has a strong elephant welfare policy and as such we discourage travellers from riding elephants in Nepal or anywhere around the world. See Intrepid’s Animal Welfare policy for more information. While we would love to open up these unique experiences to all our travellers regardless of gender, it’s simply not yet possible to do so while operating in a socially responsible and culturally sensitive manner. If you're interested in travelling to Nepal on a similar itinerary, check out some of other itineraries or consider booking a private group tour.

Health

All travellers need to be in good physical health in order to participate fully on this trip. When selecting your trip please make sure you have read through the itinerary carefully and assess your ability to cope with our style of travel. Please note that if, in the opinion of our group leader or local guide, any traveller is unable to complete the itinerary without undue risk to themselves and/or the rest of the group, Intrepid Travel reserves the right to exclude them from all or part of a trip without refund. You should consult your doctor for up-to-date medical travel information or for any necessary vaccinations before departure. We recommend that you carry a first aid kit as well as any personal medical requirements as they may not easily be obtained at the locations on this trip. Please ensure that you are adequately prepared. AIR POLLUTION: Air quality in Nepal can be poor, especially in winter. Some towns, including Kathmandu, experience very high levels of seasonal smog and heavy particulate pollution. Seek medical advice if you're concerned about the effects of air pollution. ALTITUDE SICKNESS: Travellers to altitudes higher than 2,500m are at risk of altitude sickness, also known as acute mountain sickness (AMS). This can be life threatening and affect anyone, even people who are very physically fit. There is a higher risk for those who have had altitude sickness before, who exercise or drink alcohol before adjusting to the altitude, or who have health problems that affect breathing. If your tour travels to high altitude, see your doctor for advice specific to you and your situation before you depart. It is important to be aware of the normal altitude symptoms that you may encounter BUT NOT worry about: - Periods of sleeplessness - Occasional loss of appetite - Vivid, wild dreams at around 2500-3800m in altitude - Unexpected momentary shortness of breath, day and night - Periodic breathing that wakes you occasionally - Blocked nose - Dry cough - Mild headache If you are feeling nauseous, dizzy or experience other symptoms, please be sure to let your group leader know immediately so that we can monitor your condition. Please be aware that should your group leader deem it unsafe for you to continue trekking at any time, they will arrange for you to descend to a lower attitude. Please read the following document carefully and, during your trip, utilise the table on the back daily to record your own perspective of your general health and any symptoms you may experience: https://www.intrepidtravel.com/altitude-sickness On some days this trip may ascend faster than commonly published recommended ascent rates at altitude. However, based upon an assessment by our external safety and medical advisors, and in conjunction with our own risk assessments we consider that the ascent rate is acceptable due to the additional safety measures that are in place for our customers. If you have concerns about this, please speak to your booking representative. All our leaders in the Himalayas are trained in the use of a PAC bag (Portable Altitude Chamber) and this is carried on all trips which go above 4,200m. The PAC bag is used in an emergency only to treat altitude sickness in the mountains. A First Aid kit is carried with the group and all our leaders are First Aid trained. Please ensure that your travel insurance policy does cover you up to the maximum altitude on this trip, and includes helicopter evacuation. Please take proof of this with you on the trip, as you will need to show it to the leader. MOSQUITO-BORNE ILLNESSES: Malaria is a risk in some areas of Nepal including Chitwan National Park. Dengue fever and Japanese encephalitis also occur, including on occasion in Kathmandu. Protect yourself against insect bites by wearing adequate protection, including repellent. MEDICAL FACILITIES AND TREATMENT: Medical facilities in Nepal are very limited, particularly outside Kathmandu. In Kathmandu, treatment at international-standard clinics is expensive and up-front payment for services is generally required. Make sure you have adequate travel health insurance and accessible funds to cover the cost of any medical treatment, including evacuation by helicopter.

Food and dietary requirements

FOOD IN NEPAL: We do not include meals while trekking, allowing you to choose what you want to eat and when. We know from experience that the altitude and physical exercise can meal trekker's appetites differ quite widely. The menus in the teahouses are varied, ranging from traditional Nepalese dhal bhat to pizza and apple pie. Vegetarians are well catered for in Nepal. How much you need to spend per day will vary, but it could be anything up to US$60 per day for meals, snacks and drinks. Prices tend to get higher the higher you go on trek in response to the difficulty of getting supplies to the teahouses. In Kathmandu and Pokhara there are plenty of restaurants and cafes for all tastes and budgets. For a glimpse at what traditional Nepali cuisine entails, check out our guide here: https://www.intrepidtravel.com/adventures/guide-to-nepali-cuisine/ ALCOHOL & CAFFEINE: Alcohol and trekking don't mix. We highly recommend that you limit your alcohol consumption in Kathmandu prior to your trip. Celebrate your achievements after your trek. Both alcohol and caffeine increase dehydration. Limit your intake of both when hiking at high altitudes.

Money matters

SPENDING MONEY: When it comes to spending money on the trip, every traveller is a little different. You know your spending habits better than we do, so please budget a sensible amount for things like meals not included, drinks, shopping, optional activities and laundry. It's always better to bring a little more than you think you'll need. Also make sure you've read your trip details thoroughly so you know what's included in the trip price and what isn't. This should make budgeting a little easier. You'll find this info in the Inclusions section of your Essential Trip Information (that's this document). NEPAL: The official currency of Nepal is the Nepali rupee (NPR). Its symbol is often displayed as Rs. USD are also widely accepted in Nepal. ATMs can only be found in Kathmandu, Pokhara, and Bhaktapur. Make sure you carry sufficient cash to cover your needs when travelling outside of these cities. Money exchange facilities are available in Kathmandu, Namche, Pokhara, Chitwan (only outside the park) and Bhaktapur. Credit cards are not widely accepted. The Government of Nepal has banned the import, export and use of 500 and 1000 Indian rupee notes in Nepal. You should ensure you are not carrying these notes on arrival in Nepal as they will be confiscated and you may be fined. Please note that most establishments in Asia will not accept foreign currency notes that are old, torn or faded and they can be very difficult to exchange or extra fees added when exchanging at banks. Please ensure that you have new, clean notes. Before departing on a trek, make sure you have enough Nepalese currency to purchase meals and drinks, in the smaller denominations where possible, as there are no ATMs and larger notes (such as 1000R) can be difficult to change. CONTINGENCY FUNDS: We try to plan for every eventuality, but there are still some things beyond our control. Please make sure you have access to an extra US$500 for emergencies (e.g. severe weather, natural disasters, civil unrest) or other events that result in unavoidable changes to the itinerary (e.g. transport strikes or cancellations, airport closures). Sometimes these things necessitate last minute changes to enable our trips to continue to run, and as a result there may be some extra costs involved.

What to take

TREKKING EQUIPMENT Trekking boots (broken in) Waterproof 3/4 season jacket and trousers (can be hired/purchased in Kathmandu) Good quality socks Thermal underwear/layers Down jacket (can be hired/purchased in Kathmandu) Trousers - lightweight, loose fitting, trekking trousers. Shorts or skirt for summer Sleeveless fleece and extra layers for winter departures (Dec-Feb) Warm hat and sun hat Sunglasses with UV protection Head torch (spare batteries) Sunscreen and lip balm Light weight towel Sarong Personal first aid kit Biodegradable wet wipes/toilet paper Hand sanitizer gel Trail mix/nuts/muesli bars Hot water bottle (winter months) Daypack - Must have the capacity for the items you may be carrying on a day's walk: rain jacket, trousers, warm clothing, water bottle, camera equipment, washing items and other personal effects. A hip/waist strap provides additional comfort. You should consider day packs of at least a 30 to 40 litre capacity. OTHER PACKING GUIDES: For other guides to packing for treks: https://www.intrepidtravel.com/adventures/packing-guide-for-trekking-in-nepal/ If you are spending further time in the region, please see some ideas for regular travelling gear to pack. https://www.intrepidtravel.com/packing-list

Climate and seasonal

SEASONAL INFORMATION: Nepal's climate varies greatly depending on the season: JUN - SEP: the monsoon rains (mostly at night) bring landslides in regional areas. Cloud cover often obscures mountain views with rain, mud and leeches deterring most trekkers at this time of year. Treks running in September can be hot and very humid at lower altitudes. See what it's like to trek during monsoon here: https://www.intrepidtravel.com/adventures/nepal-during-monsoon-season/ MAR - APR: Spring brings warm weather and spectacular rhododendron blooms. A popular time to visit and one of the peak times to trek. OCT - NOV: Clear skies and warm days make autumn the peak season. DEC - FEB: Winter brings cold temperatures and snow to the mountains. Good trekking, but remember to rug up. ALTERNATIVE ITINERARY During the monsoon season in the Annapurna region (June-Sep) we may trek an alternative route. This itinerary keeps the group away from areas that are prone to flooding and landslides. Safety is the number one priority when trekking in Nepal and any changes will be discussed by your trek leader. Please see as below for a brief overview of a possible alternative itinerary: DAY 1: Pokhara-Naya Pul (45 kms/1.5 hrs drive), Naya Pul-Ulleri (5 hrs) Drive to Naya Pul. Meet the trailhead and proceed downhill to Birethanti (1025m). Walk gently uphill for a couple of hours to Hille (1475m). Overnight stop at Ulleri (1960m). DAY 2: Ulleri-Ghorepani (5 hrs) Uphill walk to Ghorepani (2750m). continue climbing and descending to Banthanti (2300m),  more stairs before we emerge at Nangathanti (2520m). From here on, another hour of climb will get you to Ghorepani (2750m). DAY 3: Ghorepani-Tadapani (5 hrs) Pre-dawn hike up to Poon Hill at 3190m (45mins). marvel at the view of the Dhaulagiri & Annapurna Range. Return back to your teahouse to collect your baggage and hit the trail to Tadapani (2590m). The trail continues along the ridge line with magnificent views of the Annapurnas stretching out from east to west. Descend before climbing through dense forest to Tadapani (2700m). DAY 4: Tadapani-Ghandruk (3 hrs) It’s a relatively short day’s trek, starting on a trail that contours the forested hillside descending steadily with some steep downhill sections. Reaching a small settlement of Bhaisi Kharka where the two routes to Ghandruk converges; continue to descend until you meet the path following the Kyunri Khola. Crossing the stream, a brief walk leads to Ghandruk through the northern edge of the village. Ghandruk (1940m) is a delightful, ornate 'Gurung' village which has grown large and prosperous on the pensions of re-tired Gurkha soldiers.From Ghandruk, dramatic views of the peaks of Annapurna South, Gangapurna, Hiunchuli and the all-so-famous Machhapuchhre (Fishtail Mountain) opens up. DAY 5: Ghandruk-Nayapul (4 hrs)-Pokhara (1.5 hrs drive) Leaving Ghandruk, a steep descent to the trail junction.  We make a short descent to the village of Chane. Another long stretch of downhill pathways, arrive in Syauli Bazaar before continuing to Birethanti. Not long after we join our vehicles to return to Pokhara. 

A couple of rules

Everyone has the right to feel safe when they travel. We don’t tolerate any form of violence (verbal or physical) or sexual harassment, either between customers or involving our leaders, partners or local people. Sexual relationships between a tour leader and a customer are strictly forbidden. Use or possession of illegal drugs will not be tolerated on our trips. If you choose to consume alcohol while travelling, we encourage responsible drinking, and expect that you’ll abide by the local laws regarding alcohol consumption. The sex tourism industry is known to exploit vulnerable people and have negative consequences on communities, including undermining the development of sustainable tourism. For this reason, patronising sex workers will not be tolerated on our trips. By travelling with us you are agreeing to adhere to these rules. Your group leader has the right to remove any member of the group for breaking any of these rules, with no right of refund. If you feel that someone is behaving inappropriately while travelling with us, please inform your tour leader or local guide immediately. Alternatively, contact us on the emergency contact number detailed in the Problems and Emergency Contact section of this Essential Trip Information.

Feedback

After your travels, we want to hear from you! We rely on your feedback. We read it carefully. Feedback helps us understand what we are doing well and what we could be doing better. It allows us to make improvements for future travellers. http://www.intrepidtravel.com/feedback/

Emergency contact

In the case of a genuine crisis or emergency please contact our local office in Kathmandu: For general contact details please use the following page: http://www.intrepidtravel.com/ourtrips/contact/ While we always endeavour to provide the best possible holiday experience, due to the nature of travel and the areas we visit sometimes things can and do go wrong. Should any issue occur while you are on your trip, it is imperative that you discuss this with your group leader or our local representative straight away so that they can do their best to rectify the problem and save any potential negative impact on the rest of your trip. We recognise that there may be times when your group leader/local partner may not be able to resolve a situation to your satisfaction - if this is the case, please ask the leader to speak to their direct manager. You may also choose to provide details in your online feedback, which we ask you to complete within 30 days of the end of your trip. But we do ask you to be aware that it is very difficult for us to provide any practical help after the trip is complete. Nepal Emergency contact: +977 980 112 3617

Responsible travel

We believe strongly in low impact or rather positive impact tourism. Broadly speaking this means that we try to minimise the negative aspects of tourism on the local cultures and environments that we visit and highlight the positive aspects. Please visit our website for further details and suggestions on how you can be a responsible traveller. http://www.intrepidtravel.com/ourtrips/rt/responsibletraveller NEPAL Dress codes are quite relaxed in tourist areas of Kathmandu and Pokhara, but much more conservative in other parts of the country. Remove shoes before entering certain temples and holy places and be aware that non-Hindus may not be permitted at some religious sites. Dress modestly, take care not to offend and ask your leader if you are unsure if something is appropriate. PORTERS: Our porters are valued members of our trekking teams. We operate our treks according to standards that provide respectful, safe and fair working conditions not only in Nepal, but on all our trips globally. For more information on porter welfare, see https://www.intrepidtravel.com/au/porter-policy

The Intrepid Foundation

Help us change thousands of lives by creating meaningful work and supporting skills training in communities around the world. The Intrepid Foundation is the not-for-profit for Intrepid Group. We work with local organisations around the world to improve the livelihoods of vulnerable individuals and communities through sustainable travel experiences. With our travellers’ help, we’ve contributed more than AU $6 million to over 100 community organisations since 2002. Did you know that tourism is one of the biggest contributors to the global economy, making up 1 out of every 10 jobs? That’s why we support local projects that create meaningful jobs and give people the skills they need to work in the destinations we take you to. And it’s why we exist – to make it easy for travellers to give back to the communities and places they’ve been in an effective and meaningful way. All donations to The Intrepid Foundation are matched by Intrepid Group dollar for dollar (up to AU$10,000 per donor and AU$500,000 in total each financial year, excluding emergency appeals). And because Intrepid Group covers all administration costs, every cent goes directly to the projects. Donating is simple and secure. Please ask your leader for information about the projects we support through The Intrepid Foundation or visit our website: http://www.theintrepidfoundation.org/ Organisations and projects currently supported by The Intrepid Foundation in Nepal include: *Forget Me Not Forget Me Not rescue and reintegrate ‘paper orphans’ to be thriving, vibrant and connected to family, community and opportunity. In Nepal, there are currently 16,886 children in orphanages and up to 80% could be raised by at least one of their parents if given support. Many of the children have been taken from their families, trafficked into orphanages and used to generate funds. Last year Forget Me Not received 27% of all children rescued from orphanages in Nepal. Rescued children are given complete medical care including psychological, physical and overall wellbeing assessments. Individual case plans are developed and missions determined to trace each child’s family and work towards reunification and reintegration. https://www.theintrepidfoundation.org/projects/forget-me-not/ *Seven Women works to economically and socially empower marginalised women in Nepal through literacy programs, skills training and income generation. www.theintrepidfoundation.org/projects/seven-women/ https://www.intrepidtravel.com/adventures/meet-kathmandus-hidden-artisans-the-extraordinary-seven-women/ For more information on our projects in Nepal, or to make a donation, visit: http://www.theintrepidfoundation.org/projects/?projectcountry=nepal

Accommodation notes

TEAHOUSES: Accommodation at local lodges - better known as teahouses - are simple but comfortable. Toilets and washing facilities are shared and rudimentary, and the food is plain and filling. In a teahouse, travellers are provided with small twin share rooms with twin beds, mattresses and pillows. At times, in high seasons, and in places where there are limited number of teahouses, travellers may have to make do with dormitories. In some places, teahouses don't have access to electricity, depending on solar powered lighting instead. In more remote regions, teahouses don't have running water and toilets can mean just a hole in the ground. Hot shower facilities are available in some teahouses for a price but occasionally a hot shower means a bucket of hot water, enough to wash your body. Electricity to charge devices as well as WiFi is usually for an additional fee when available.

Transport notes

KATHMANDU AIRPORT CLOSURES: Kathmandu's Tribhuvan International Airport (KTM), Nepal's only international airport, will partially close beginning in April 2019 for repairs to its sole runway. The 3050 m (10,007 ft) runway will be repaved beginning the first week of April and construction is expected to be completed before June 2019. KTM will close daily from 22:00 (local time) to 08:00. Following the runway re-construction, work will begin on the taxiway. Flight disruptions are possible during the construction period. Trips that included flights to/from Lukla will be affected, as flights can't operate in the morning hours. From 1st April - 1st June 2019 we will arrive/depart from Ramechhap (also known as Manthali) Airport instead of Kathmandu. The airport is located 130km (approx. 4-5 hours drive) from Kathmandu. For customers traveling to or from Nepal during the anticipated construction time we advise to confirm the status of their flight and anticipate possible flight delays and disruptions. AIR TRAVEL: Flights between Kathmandu and Lukla are often delayed due to poor weather and there have been occasions when groups have had to have their treks rescheduled. Your local leader will give you the most up to date information regarding delays to flights. Nepal's only international airport, Tribhuvan International Airport, has a single runway that services both domestic and international flights. Cancellations and delays are frequent, especially during peak tourist seasons or in poor weather. Travellers have on occasion missed international connections as a result of this, particularly if flights from Lukla to Kathmandu are delayed. Ensure you have adequate travel insurance and contact numbers for your airlines before departure. LUGGAGE LIMITS: Domestic flights in Nepal have strict weight limits - 10kg of check-in luggage and 5kg of carry-on hand luggage per person is included with your flight ticket. Excess baggage (up to 5kg per person only) will be charged at your own expense. TRAVEL BETWEEN KATHMANDU & POKHARA: On itineraries that include road travel between these destinations, past travellers have often decided to fly this route independently to avoid the long overland journey (200km, approx 6+ hours). The flight takes around 35mins. Should you decide to fly, this will be at your own expense with no refunds for road travel available. ROAD TRAVEL: Roadworks and infrastructure projects can cause significant delays on major roads within cities and highways between destinations. Road travel can also be disrupted due to demonstrations and bandhs (strikes) without warning. Major roadworks are currently ongoing in and around Kathmandu and the roads to Chitwan National Park. Delays, heavy traffic, poor road conditions and dust are a reality of road travel in Nepal. MONSOON: The monsoon season is from June to September and weather conditions can disrupt travel during this time due to flooding and landslides. Disruption of air travel and airport closures are also possible. Be prepared that the itinerary may need to change at short notice.

Travel insurance

Travel insurance is compulsory for all our trips. We require that, at a minimum, you are covered for medical expenses including emergency repatriation. We strongly recommend that the policy also covers personal liability, cancellation, curtailment and loss of luggage and personal effects. When travelling on a trip, you won't be permitted to join the group until evidence of travel insurance and the insurance company's 24 hour emergency contact number has been seen by your leader. If you have credit card insurance your group leader will require details of the participating insurer/underwriter, the level of coverage, policy number and emergency contact number rather than the bank's name and credit card details. Please contact your bank for these details prior to arriving in-country. http://www.intrepidtravel.com/insurance.php

Your fellow travellers

As you travel on a group trip you will be exposed to all the pleasures and maybe some of the frustrations of travelling in a group. Your fellow travellers will probably come from all corners of the world and likely a range of age groups too. We ask you to be understanding of the various needs and preferences of your group - patience with your fellow travellers is sometimes required for the benefit of everyone's travel experience. Remember too that you have responsibilities to the group. If you are requested to be at a place at a certain time, ensure that you don't keep the rest of the group waiting. We have found time and time again that the very best trips we operate are those where the dynamics within the group work well - this takes just a little effort on your part. Due to privacy reasons we are unable to provide you with contact details and any personal information about your fellow travellers booked on your trip prior to departure.

Itinerary disclaimer

ITINERARY CHANGES: Our itineraries are updated regularly throughout the year based on customer feedback and to reflect the current situation in each destination. The information included in this Essential Trip Information may therefore differ from when you first booked your trip. It is important that you print and review a final copy prior to travel so that you have the latest updates. Due to weather, local conditions, transport schedules, public holidays or other factors, further changes may be necessary to your itinerary once in country. The order and timing of included activities in each location may also vary seasonally to ensure our travellers have the best experience. Your tour leader will keep you up to date with any changes once on tour. OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES: A selection of optional activities that have been popular with past travellers are listed in the day-to-day itinerary. This isn't an exhaustive list and should be used as a guide only for some of what might be available. Prices are approximate, are for entrance only, and don’t include transport to and from the sites or local guides unless indicated. All activities are subject to availability. It may not be possible to do all the activities listed in the time available at each destination, so some pre-planning for what you are most interested in is advised. When it's recommended that travellers pre-book these activities, look for a note in the Special Information section of the day-to-day itinerary. For most, they can either be organised independently on the day, or let your leader know you are interested and they can assist. Where activities are considered medium or high risk, we work with operators whose safety and credentials we have sighted and assessed. Although it is possible that you may find the same activity cheaper with another operator on the ground, we cannot vouch for the safety or quality of that operator. Medium and high risk activities not listed above have not been assessed by us and as such our staff and leaders are unable to assist you with organising these activities. Activities that contravene our Responsible Travel policies are also not listed. Please remember that the decision to partake in any activity not listed is at your own discretion and risk.

Accommodation

Hotel (4 nights),Guesthouse (2 nights),Homestay (5 nights),Jungle Resort (1 night)

All prices are indicative only and subject to availability and changes without obligation.

Time until next start
603
days
08
hours
:
44
min
:
03
sec

Price

€1,525

Duration

13 days
2021

Mon, Aug 09

Sat, Aug 21

€1,525

Still available

Book
Select date
Please provide a valid email address.
Book now
Please provide a valid phone number. Like: +31636363634
Safe bookingPay later · No card needed
Do you have a question?
Your question should be between 5 and 2000 chars.
Send
Book on Trekhunt
"Find our tours on Trekhunt! Don’t hesitate to send your inquiry, we are happy to take you to your next adventure!" - Intrepid Travel
Book this for
Monday, Aug 9
Book now
Share this trek on