Kathmandu Valley, the Annapurna Massif and the Teraï

A culturally rich, exotic journey. Your adventure begins in the Kathmandu Valley, first stop, the hilltop Buddhist stupa, Swyambhunath, which overlooks the valley. Then, explore Patan, one of the three stunning ancient imperial cities. Get a glimpse into the Hindu universe at Pashupatinath Temple and the cremation site, dedicated to Lord Shiva, which dates back to the XIIth century. Then, you journey to Bhaktapur, the city of medieval architecture and drive to Pokhara for a short trek through the Nepalese villages nestled at the foot of Annapurna and Machapuchare mountains. En route to Lumbini, you visit Tansen, a stronghold of the Rana dynasty and then make your way to the plains of Terai and visit Lumbini, the birthplace of Gautama Buddha. A complete change of scenery awaits in heart of the Chitwan National Park with a jungle atmosphere straight from the pages of a certain Rudyard Kipling book. Explore and discover the jungle on foot, by canoe or on elephant back and search for rhinos, tigers and exotic birds...

Itinerary

  • Day 1 Kathmandu

    Welcome to Kathmandu. Your transfer to your hotel has been arranged. After settling in, you can visit Swaymbhunath, the hilltop Buddhist stupa which overlooks the valley.

    Accommodation: Hotel

  • Day 2 Patan - Khokana - Kathmandu

    Enjoy a guided tour of the Kathmandu valley and its historical treasures. Visit Patan, one of the three ancient imperial cities of the valley known for its artisans, the founders of the decadent statues seen there. Then, you continue to Bungamati, a village of 15th century Newar artisans and stroll among the terraced crops at the village of Khokhana. Late afternoon return to your hotel.

    Accommodation: Hotel

  • Day 3 Pashupatinath - Bhaktapur

    There is a fabulous array of historical sites and monuments in the Kathmandu valley. Visit Pashupatinath, a Hindu site which dates back to the twelfth century and has a place of cremation dedicated to Shiva, where the pilgrims bathe in the sacred river Bagmati. You then leave for the sumptuous pedestrian city Bhaktapur, 15 km from Kathmandu, this is the most beautiful of the three imperial cities of the valley. Stay overnight in Bhaktapur to soak in all it has to offer. Evenings and early mornings in Durbar Square are incredibly soothing.

    Accommodation: Hotel

  • Day 4 Bhaktapur - Changu Narayan - Bodhnath

    Early in the morning, you stroll through the narrow streets of Bhaktapur. Drive to Telkot and go hiking along the ridge to Changu Narayan, the oldest temple in the valley. It is dedicated to Vishnu and found on a promontory overlooking the Kathmandu valley. Descend on foot to the Newar village of Sankhu and then it is a short transfer to Bodhnath, a great stupa in the heart of the Tibetan district where many exiled monasteries were constructed. We spend the night in Bodhnath to enjoy this sacred place after the departure of the tourists.

    Accommodation: Hotel

  • Day 5 Katmandou - Bandipur

    You leave the valley of Kathmandu at Thankot (1400m). Take a public vehicle to Bandipur, a sumptuous village of Newari traders. This place has superb views of the Himalayan mountains including Mount Manaslu (8163m). This afternoon, we take a short walk in the vicinity of this village which is famous for its orange trees.

    Hiking: 1 hour
    Drive: 4 hours
    Accommodation: Hotel

  • Day 6 Bandipur - Pokhara - Australian Camp (2050 m)

    The first golden rays of the morning sun bathe the arid high mountains in a warm glow, sunrise here is a unique and lovely. Take a local bus to Pokhara (2h30) for your lunch break. Then, continue the drive by private vehicule to Kande (1700 m) which is surrounded by terraced rice fields. Now, you are in Gurung country and have reached the beginning of our trek to Annapurna Camp.

    Hiking. 1 hour
    Elevation: +350m
    Drive: 4 hours
    Accommodation: Lodge

  • Day 7 Australian Camp - Landruk (1640 m)

    This morning, we wake up to sun rise over the towering Annapurnas just nearby. After breakfast, you trek to the village of Landruk in the valley of Modi Khola. Enjoy a pleasant day walking between villages and rice fields, in the heart of the Annapurna Mountains.

    Hiking: 4 hours
    Elevation: +250m/-500m
    Accommodation: Lodge

  • Day 8 Landruk - Ghandruk (2050 m)

    Enjoy breakfast with superb views of South Annapurna (7219 m) and Himchuli (6441 m). Then, trek down to Modi Kola and up to Ghandruk, another Gurung village with typical houses, surrounded by stone walls which protect the rice and wheat fields. You can expect lovely views of South Annapurna and Machapuchare from Ghandruk.

    Hiking: 4 hours
    Elevation: +450m/-300m
    Accommodation: Lodge

  • Day 9 Gandruk - Pokhara

    After breakfast, you descend to Birethanti (1100 m) and join a vehicle transfer to Pokhara. Enjoy an afternoon at leisure to rest and relax in Pokhara: stroll along the lakeside or enjoy a drink on the banks of Lake Phewa.

    Hiking: 5 hours
    Elevation: -850m
    Accommodation: Lodge

  • Day 10 Pokhara – Tansen - Lumbini

    After breakfast you take the road to Tansen. A journey which crosses beautiful Nepalese countryside and displays varied landscapes of mountains, valleys, rice fields and villages. Afternoon arrival in Tansen and time to discover this ancient city and fief of the Rana dynasty as well as the historical center and Tansen Durbar palace. Then, continue your drive to Lumbini, which is very close to the Indo-Nepalese border.

    Drive: 8 hours
    Accommodation: Hotel

  • Day 11 Visit of Lumbini - Chitwan Park, Terai region

    Visit Lumbini, the birthplace of Gautama Buddha. Walk in the Lumbini Gardens for a fascinating experience. Various international Buddhist communities have built temples and monasteries in this holy place. We can visit some of them before driving to Chitwan National Park this afternoon.

    Drive: 5 hours
    Accommodation: Hotel

  • Day 12 Chitwan Park: canoeing, elephant ride and hiking

    A day devoted to the jungle - discover Chitwan national park. Go canoeing down the river to observe birds and crocodiles as the sun rises. Ride elephants and search of rhinoceros and walk through the jungle tracking and spotting deer, bears and tigers! In the evening, we witness a Tharu warrior dance, performed by the Terai ethnic group.

    Accommodation: Hotel

  • Day 13 Stroll and return to Kathmandu

    Enjoy an early morning walk to observe the fabulous birds here in the jungle; indian roller, kingfisher, bee-eater, bar-headed goose... After breakfast, you take the road to Kathmandu. Free time upon arrival in Kathmandu. Option: Short flight to Kathmandu from Bharatpur Airport.

    Drive: 5 hours
    Accommodation: Hotel

  • Day 14 End of stay

    End of our services

The details in this programme are updated regularly but imponderables and unpredictable circumstances may result in inaccuracies. In order to provide the adventure which is best suited to your demands, the weather and the operational conditions, changes to the programme may be made. For safety reasons, we reserve the rights to interrupt your participation in this programme at any time if your technical level or fitness are deemed unsuitable or if you are seen as a danger to yourself or to those around you. This will in no case give rise to refunds or compensation.

Period & budget

When to travel?

The best period for travelling is during the following months:

Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec

Price

From 1185 US$ per person (base 2 travelers)

The budget is an indication of the price per person, subject to availability. Your local agent will send you a customized quote with the exact price. The price can vary according to availability, level of services, period of travel, number of participants, booking time frame and other items.

Included

  • Transport by private/public vehicle according to itinerary
  • Accommodation in 2 * hotel or B&B in Kathmandu (Hotel Norbulinka or similar)
  • Accommodation in a 2 * hotel in Pokhara (Hotel Lake View or similar)
  • Trek includes full-board and lodging 
  • Accompaniment by an English-speaking Altaï Guide
  • Visits as per itinerary: with a cultural guide and a private vehicle
  • Porterage of luggage: up to 10kg maximum per person during the trek
  • Trekking support team: assistants and porters
  • Trekking permits: ACAP and TIMS
  • Staff Insurance

Not included

  • Entrance to historical sites & monuments
  • Meals in Kathmandu & Kathmandu Valley
  • Nepalese visa: US $ 25
  • Supplement flight Chitwan - Kathmandu: US $ 115
  • International flights
  • Insurance: Repatriation, Medical & Helicopter Services
  • Drinks, tips and personal expenses - all that is not in "THE PRICE INCLUDES"

Notes

For many years, we put our know-how and our experience of Himalayan destinations to the service of travelers from different horizons. You may find yourself in an international group with participants from our various partners.

Level 2/5

This trip is perfect for travellers who enjoy gentle hikes and are interested in discovering historic sites and becoming immersed in Nepalese culture. Good hiking shoes and walking equipment are required.

Terms and conditions

Booking conditions

Booking a trip with us implies acceptance of the terms and conditions of sale. Each customer is required to complete a registration form and, subject to availability at the time of registration, travellers are expected to pay a deposit of 30% of the total price to complete their booking. Payments can be made online or by bank transfer. You will receive an e-mail with your booking confirmation.

Invoice procedure

Once your booking is confirmed you will receive an invoice by e-mail. The full balance of the trip must be received at least 30 days before your departure date. We reserve the right to cancel your booking, free of charge, if this deadline is not respected.

Cancellation policy

If for any reason you have to cancel your trip, we require written confirmation of your decision so please contact us by e-mail, fax or letter. The money you have paid will then be refunded according to the following deductions:
  • Cancellation received more than 30 days prior to the departure date: No cancellation fees.
  • Cancellation received 30 to 21 days before the departure date: 30% of trip price will be retained.
  • Cancellation received within 20 days of the departure date: 70% of trip price will be retained.
Please note if you decide to cancel your trip having agreed, in writing, to pay for additional tailor-made services (hotel, additional flights or activities...), these services are usually non-refundable.

If we have to cancel a departure due to an insufficient number of participants, you will be informed no later than 21 days before departure and a full refund will be issued, you will not be entitled to further compensation. We reserve the rights to cancel departures due to exceptional circumstances which may impact the safety of participants. Such circumstances may include those amounting to 'force majeure' in which case participants will receive a full refund but they will not be entitled to any compensation.

Changes to travel contract

If you wish to make a change to your booking please contact us in writing; you will be expected to pay any fee which might arise from this change. In the event of unforeseen external events, Altaï Nepal may change some aspects of the travel contract. If any changes are necessary you will be informed as quickly as possible.

Pricing

The prices on our website are updated regularly and all of the prices we advertise are accurate when published. We reserve the rights to make changes to any of these prices. Before you make a booking we will give you the up-to-date price of your chosen holiday including any supplements, upgrades or additional activities you may have requested. If the number of travellers is fewer than the indicated number of participants on the website, a small group surcharge may be applied. For all of our trips we include details of services, prices and what is/is not included but please be aware that changes to the prices may be necessary in accordance with exchange rates or price changes of various components of the journey.

Contract transfer

If you are unable to travel for any reason, you can transfer your booking to another person in which case our modification conditions apply. Both the transferor and transferee will be jointly and severally liable for payment of the total holiday price and other associated expenses. Some airline carriers treat name changes as cancellations and you may be required to pay for the cost of a new ticket.

Insurance

We strongly recommend that you take out personal travel insurance for your trip with Altaï Nepal as soon as your booking is confirmed. We advice you to purchase a travel insurance policy which covers flight cancellations, luggage loss and emergency health care. Please look carefully at which activities are covered by your insurer and do not forget to bring all necessary documents and information with you (name of the company, name of the contract, insurance policy number, telephone number...)

Practical info

Staff

This trip is led by a professional Nepali English-speaking Tour Leader, who is part of the Altai Nepal Team. Armed with an abundance of experience and a wealth of knowledge, our professional guides are all real experts.

Food

Lodge meals
The international success of treks in the Annapurna and Everest regions influences the economy; tarifs for food and lodging are now set by the National Park and have increased sharply in recent years, but quantities and quality of food have paradoxically decreased. To offset this decline in quality and quantity of food and in order to focus on the local economy, we plan Dal Bhat daily for our menus.It is a balanced dish, full of energy and nutritive intake, not fatty and above all, very digestible (digestion is more difficult at altitude). For all challlenging treks, we provide energy snacks (like dried fruits). Meals in Kathmandu and in the valley are not included in the trip price. You will have plenty of time to discover Indian, Bhutanese, Chinese, Thai and other cuisines.
Please be aware that tap water is not normally drinkable. All drinks are at your own expense.

Accommodation

In Kathmandu and other cities, you will normally be accommodated in 3 * hotels. In more rural areas, we use homestay accommodation with varying comforts (they all have functioning beds, mattresses, tables, chairs, toilets, etc.) We love using homestay accommodation options which offer insights into Nepalese life and support local families.

Transportation

Transport/transfers by private minibus & plane.

Budget & exchange

The local currency is the Nepalese Rupee NPR.
Visit http://www.xe.com for the latest currency converter and exchange rates.
You can withdraw Nepalese Rupees from in-country ATMs in Kathmandu and credit cards are accepted except in shops and hotels. Please budget for meals in Kathmandu, drinks, tips and other personal expenses.

Tips

Tipping is very present in Nepal. It is an integral part of the 'tourism' culture of the country: independent of salary levels, your tip is seen as a sign of appreciation. The amount depends on your satisfaction with the services rendered and your generosity. Your guide will help you on this subject. Like money, if you have clothes to give, do not hesitate to seek advice from your guide who will make a fair distribution. We ask that you do not to give sweets and / or energy bars  / chocolate to local children as there are virtually no dentists here in the mountains. The same rules apply to medicine, western medication is not necessarily adapted for the Nepalese and, moreover, following the correct dosage is extremely important.

Vital equipment

  • Warm Sleeping Bag
  • Water purifiers (micropur, aguatabs ...)

From head to toe:
  • A cap or sunhat
  • 1 or 2 sets of thermals: long-sleeved thermal tops and full-length long johns
  • Long sleeved and short sleeved t-shirts, preferably in quick-drying technical material
  • A light fleece or equivilent (plus extra warm layers if necessary)
  • A breathable wind proof, waterproof jacket (Gore-Tex...)
  • Lightweight waterproof over trousers
  • Suitable shorts
  • Walking trousers
  • A pair of high-rise walking boots - strength, good grip of the foot and ankle (high stems) and impermeability are essential. Choose shoes with non-slip soles (vibram).
  • A pair of trainers/sandels or equivilent casual shoes for cities, villages and evenings
  • Thick walking socks
  • Warm gloves, hat and scarf (it can be chilly in the mountains)

Do not forget
  • Your personal toiletries and a fast drying towel
  • Water bottle(s). Min. 2 litres, light and isothermal
  • A good pair of sunglasses (think min. category 3)
  • Sun-cream, face and lips
  • Head torch and spare batteries
  • A pocket knife
  • A pair of hiking poles
  • A waterproof bag cover (or plastic bags) to protect your belongings
  • Toilet paper
  • Anti-bacterial hand gel
  • Your camera
  • Notebook or travel diary

Material

We prefer that you do not wear cotton clothing, including underwear, when participating in activities. When cotton gets wet from water or sweat it ceases to insulate and it does not dry fast. The best materials for outdoor activities are fast drying materials like polyester or materials which are warm when wet like wool.

The most powerful materials against the wind and rain are 'breathable' materials like Gore-Tex or Nikwax. Soft shell layers are effective against the wind.

Our advice for keeping warm
Weather conditions in the high mountains can be variable, please think carefully about what clothes you pack especially for our winter trips and remember that the layers you wear next to your skin can make the biggest difference.
We recommend:
  • No cotton
  • Always carry dry spares of everything, including underwear and gloves

Wear multiple layers including:
  1. A warm breathable base layer
  2. A second thermal layer
  3. Wind and water proof protective outer layers

Luggage

Your luggage must be divided into two bags:
  • A rucksack (35-40L or 45-50L) for use as a day bag. This will contain your (vital) personal belongings for the day (sweater, spare t-shirt, water bottle, picnic-lunch, sunglasses, small things ... )
  • A larger bag (60-80L) containing the rest of your belongings, which can be safely stored in Kathmandu.

Medicine

Your guide is a trained first-aider and will carry a full first aid kit at all times during the trip. We recommend that you bring a small personal first aid kit containing any medication you may need such as inhalers, plasters, antiseptic and painkillers.

Passport

Your passport should be vaild for at least six months after the last day of your stay. It is your responsibility to confirm your specific passport requirements and please be aware that proof of onwards travel may be required.

Visa

It is your responsibility to confirm your specific visa requirements. Please bring valid passport photos with you to obtain a visa upon arrival.
To obtain trekking permits, your passport and photo ID is also required. Please provide us with good quality scans of your passport and 2 photos of identity.
For an individual visa, obtained on the spot as you arrive in Kathmandu, rates are as follows:
- 15 days : 25 US$ + 1 picture
- 30 days : 40 US$  + 1 picture
- 90 days : 100 US$ + 1 picture

Mandatory vaccines

No mandatory vaccinations are required. Recommended vaccines include Typhoid, Hepatitis A, Hepatitis B, Rabies, Japanese Encephalitis, and Influenza.

Health information & recommendations

It is your responsibility to check that your personal health insurance covers everything in this trip. A consultation with your doctor is a prerequisite for any trip and we advise you to visit your dentist too as untreated cavaties have an annoying habit of waking up with altitude.

Hygiene Recommendations
Water is not drinkable in Nepal. It is always possible to buy bottled water but in order to limit pollution and preserve natural areas, we strongly recommend that you drink purified water. For that, think to bring a water bottle of minimum 1.5 liters and purifying tablets (micropur, agua tabs ...). Consume only treated water or water which has been boiled for 30 minutes and then filtered.
Be sure to wash your hands frequently, and definitely before each meal (anti-bacterial hand gel is recommended) and take care to disinfect any skin wounds. Avoid drinking natural drinks like pressed fruit juice and do not consume ice cream or "lassi" (a milk-based beverage) bought in the street. Meat and fish / shellfish should be well cooked before consumption.

Weather

From the eternal snows of high peaks to the tropical lowlands, Nepal has a wide variety of climates.
- In autumn (October to mid-December) the days are very beautiful but can be fresh at altitude. At 3000 m altitude, temperatures can drop to -10 ° C (14°F) at night.
- In winter (mid-december to mid-february): The nights are generally cold and the climate is dry. If night time temperatures drop easily below 0 ° C (31°F) to 3000 m, the days are often sunny. Treks below 4000 m are very pleasant. There are very few tourists at this time.
- In spring (March to end of May): in this season, Kathmandu is in full bloom and the rhododendrons are magnificent. The weather is pleasant, it is getting hotter with some night storms. Temperatures vary between 10 and 28 ° C (50 - 83°F), but can rise to over +30 ° C (+86°F). Between 2000 and 3000 m, temperatures rarely drop below 0 ° C (32°F). A few rare frosts or snowfalls are possible in March from +4000 m.
- In summer: it is the monsoon season. This interrupts the majority of trekking from June until the end of September. However, certain regions of the "Trans-Himalayan" zone, Mustang and Dolpo remain sheltered from the monsoons - these are the only circuits available in Nepal in the summer.

Electricity

In recent years, due to a lack of hydropower facilities, electricity and water outages are becoming more frequent in Nepal, especially in Kathmandu (mainly in winter and spring). The hotels have generator but the electricity is limited. It is the same for the consumption of water.

Local time

Coordinated Universal Time (UTC)/ Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) +5.45. Daylight Saving Time (DST) is not observed here.

Sustainable tourism

As adventure and wilderness travel experts who run trips to some of the most remote parts of the world, we take responsible tourism very seriously. We respect the ‘Leave No Trace’ outdoor ethical code and try to explore this beautiful location whilst causing minimal environmental damage.

Since the beginning, we have advocated for responsible tourism and the importance of equitable and sustainable principles. Harmonising these fundamentals ensures a fair distribution of economic benefits, improved working conditions for local teams and an increased awareness of the importance and practice of environmental protection. We hope that all of our clients will respect our philosophies and embrace these attitudes.

The Leave No Trace policy can be summarized in 7 simple steps which we hope you will follow during ourtrip...
1.    Be prepared
2.    Stick to trails and camp overnight right
3.    Stash your trash and pick up waste
4.    Leave it as you find it
5.    Be careful with fire
6.    Respect wildlife
7.    Be considerate of other visitors

Over the years we have built up good relations with our local suppliers and we are keen to support local businesses as much as possible. We are a small company and we pay our local partners and suppliers directly insuring fair rates.

Our small group sizes not only provide a more intimate adventure but also cause less impact on the environment and local communities.We expect all who travel with us to support and uphold our Sustainable Tourism philosophies.
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Buddhi

My local agent
Buddhi

  • Native to Eastern Nepal
  • A trekking guide for over 20 years
  • Specialist of Annapurnas, Everest, Ladakh and Rajasthan
  • Languages: English and French, plus some German and Chinese
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Region
Kathmandu Valley and the Terai
Activity
Hiking & culture
Duration
14 days
Code
NEPDECFIT
Price
From €1,045
Level
2/5
Comfort
4/5

Strengths

  • A beautiful trek in the heart of the Annapurna massif
  • Ancient Hindu/Buddhist monuments &  Newar architecture
  • Chitwan Wildlife Park in the tropical Terai region
  • Pokhara and Kathmandu

Required level

This trip is perfect for travellers who enjoy gentle hikes and are interested in discovering historic sites and becoming immersed in Nepalese culture. Good hiking shoes and walking equipment are required.
Request a quote