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“Epic Annapurna Trek on Top of the World”
Best quest in Nepal’s Himalayas from Kathmandu
May 3-11, 2024 Small Fit Group
We must close out trips out 90 days before departure. Price listed below the daily itinerary
Namaste y’all. Join us to the “roof of the world” in the Annapurna range under the shadow of Everest. Dramatic scenery unfolds with your every step among the biodiversity of glacial rivers, terraced rice fields, dense forests and valleys of wildflowers, all against the jaw-dropping backdrop of snowcapped peaks. The Kingdom of Nepal offers a bucket list trek for your bragging rights, which our past group loved. You must be fit for the challenges on this AFS trip, but you’ll relish in the triumphs. The trail only opened to foreigners in 1977 and now rated in Top 5 of the world’s greatest hikes! This majestic range looks like a painting by Mother Nature and we have you covered each step along the way among remote villages, ancient Hindu temples and Buddhist monasteries. It’s not simply a sacred path to tread but an immersive experience with astounding contrasts to rouse your spirit.
Need more? We packed this expedition with plenty of thrills. Begin in the delightful crazy capital of Kathmandu to meet the monks and tour the famous sacred sites. The bustling energy of Durbar Square, which will leave you spellbound. Then fly to Pokhara, Nepal’s “gateway to adventure,” for paragliding, endless zip lines and our fave of all – ultralight micro flights. You’ll also have a once-in-a-lifetime option of our mountain flight over stunning Mount Everest for your best photos ever.
Air is so easy round trip to Nepal and our incredible price simply can’t be beat at $1675 plus $197 for domestic air. Enjoy our small group where camaraderie thrives among like-minded adventures. Come for the soul-stirring mountain highs in this land above the clouds with yaks and yetis. Come for the self-discovery and the foraging of memories made together. If you love awesome hikes, this is a total Vacation Nirvana!
Our Glorious AFS Itinerary
Click here for the Trip Tips
May 3 – Depart USA to Kathmandu. Air details to come in trip tips later.
May 4 – Welcome to glorious Nepal (Land portion officially begins)
Arrive at Kathmandu International Airport, and get ready for a wildly wonderful adventure! Our guide will be there to greet you with a warm smile and whisk you away to your cozy hotel (group transfer – just a heads up, check-in time is normally 2:00 PM).
This afternoon, enjoy our city tour of this unique capital city that is packed with stupors, shrines, monuments and temples.
Wander through the bustling Kathmandu Durbar Square, where history comes alive. This royal palace square is one of three in the valley and holds centuries of tradition and charm. The impressive Hanuman Dhoka Palace Complex was home to Nepal’s royalty until the 19th century – imagine kings and queens living it up in the good old days. The enchanting complex is actually made up of two main courtyards (chowks) that boast stunning wooden carvings, panels, and intricately designed windows.
Inside the palace awaits even more wonders: visit the King Tribhuwan Memorial Museum (honoring the king who introduced Nepal to the world) and the Mahendra Museum (dedicated to his son, King Mahendra). We can even explore the State Rooms.
Don’t miss one of Nepal’s most peculiar attractions – Kumari Chowk. Picture this: a gilded cage inhabited by Raj Kumari, a young girl chosen as the human incarnation of Hindu goddess Durga. She’s worshipped oh-so-often during religious festivals, and sometimes you can catch her public appearance. Her guards may kindly ask for a fee.
Imagine this: you’re climbing up the ancient, worn stone steps of the 5th-century Swayambhu Stupa, with its glittering golden spire reaching for the sky. As you ascend, your eyes meet the painted gaze of Buddha, watching over all. With each step, flutters of colorful prayer flags dance around you, adding to the kaleidoscope of sights and sounds.
You’ve reached Swayambhunath, a World Heritage Site that’s not only one of Nepal’s most iconic symbols but also one of its holiest Buddhist places. It’s like stepping back in time as you explore its mythical origins – legend says that an Enlightened Being transformed a lotus flower into a hill and shining light into this awe-inspiring stupa.
Now picture yourself amidst a crowd of pilgrims and red-clad monks as they circle the sacred monument, spinning prayer wheels to send good vibes out into the universe. Mind the mischievous monkeys! They’ve earned this temple its nickname “Monkey Temple,” and watching them playfully prance around adds an extra dash of fun to this spiritual adventure.
The nearby temple complex is like a melting pot of faiths with shrines and statues dedicated to both Buddhist and Hindu deities. The mingling of pilgrims from both traditions is a testament to Nepal’s unique religious harmony. With time permitting, our guide will escort us to the iconic Crematorium to witness Hindu funerals, always fascinating. $10 entrance fee.
Head back to the hotel. Tonight, we’ll have a Welcome Dinner where you’ll be introduced to your tour team who’ll guide you through this once-in-a-lifetime journey. FYI – our past nine AFS groups here love our four-star hotel with the friendliest staff who make you feel like home.
Meals Included: Dinner
Overnight at Hotel Shambala Kathmandu.
May 5 – Fly to Pokhara Trek Begins!
Kathamdu Dep. 0855 HRS / Arr. 0920 HRS Drive Pokhara – Nayapul / Trek To Ulleri ( 2,070 M/Approx. 6 Hours)
Ready, set, soar! Transfer to the Kathmandu airport, where a wondrous flight to the magical land of Pokhara. Wave goodbye to city life and meet our guide team of Sherpas!
Touchdown! Welcome to Pokhara, an enchanting paradise cradled in nature’s warm embrace. Our adventure begins with a scenic jaunt to the quaint village of Nayapul (1100m), nestled snugly along the babbling Modi River. As we journey onward, you’ll be spellbound by the mesmerizing waterfalls that dance along our path. Wherever we tread, lively locals greet us with boundless good cheer.
Together, we shall forge ahead with hearts light and spirits high towards Tirkhedhunga. Prepare your senses for a feast. Our trail ascends ever upward as we near Ulleri, a mere hour away from our final destination.
(Worry not about hunger’s gnawing grip—sustenance awaits: breakfast tempts our taste buds, then lunch keeps us fueled for action, and finally dinner nourishes our weary souls after a day of exhilarating exploration. Healthy meals will include Nepalese, Tibetan and western dishes.)
As dusk’s falls softly upon this enchanting land, we take our well-earned repose at a local mountain hut with warmth and hospitality. Sweet dreams of adventures yet to come as we lay down our heads for a well-deserved slumber.
Meals Included: Breakfast , Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at local Lodge. (Lodging in Annapurna is in mountain huts called “tea houses”. Rooms are rustic with clean bedding and attached bathrooms.)
May 6 – Trek Ulleri to Ghorepani (2860 m / Approx. 6 Hrs)
After breakfast, we kick off an exhilarating trek! The path ahead leads us on a twisting dance, up a beautifully crafted stone staircase that meanders through lush, temperate forests filled with majestic oak trees and vibrant rhododendrons. Our destination? The renowned Ghorepani village, a dazzling jewel along the Annapurna circuit.
Ghorepani’s charm extends far and wide, drawing in spirited trekkers who simply cannot resist soaking in the spectacular panorama of the awe-inspiring Himalayan peaks. This enchanting village is home to the warm-hearted Magar folks, who graciously welcome visitors into their abode.
As nightfall swathes the village in a blanket of stars, we rest our weary-yet-grateful heads in cozy comfort.
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner. Overnight at local Lodge.
May 7 – Poon Hill to Tadapani Excursion (2595 m. /Approx.) 6 Hours
As the sun stretches over the horizon, we embark on an adventure to Poon Hill, a magical peak sitting at a lofty 3100 meters. With just an hour of frolicking through the enchanting trails, our eyes will be greeted by a panorama of magnificent Machapuchre, the awe-inspiring Annapurnas, and the regal Dhaulagiri and Nilgiri Himal. We’ll find ourselves in a sea of vibrant Rhododendron flowers that paint the trails between Ghorepani and Ghandruk. Like nature masterpiece, it’s a dreamy landscape.
The red Lali Guras, Nepal’s beloved national flower, will dance in the breeze as we weave our way toward Tadapani, leaving behind the well-trodden path to Jomsom and Muktinath. Our gentle ascents coax us through fragrant forests in the crisp mountain air with amazing vistas of Annapurna South.
We’ll nestle down in lively little Banthanti for a scrumptious lunch. After sating our appetites with local delicacies, we have just one hour left of hiking through fairytale scenery before reaching the welcoming abode of Tadapani.
Rest well in our cozy local tea house where dreams of conquering mountains are born.
Meals Included: Breakfast , Lunch & Dinner. Overnight at local Lodge
May 8 – Trek Tadapani to Ghandruk (1940 m) and Nayapul (1100 m /Approx. 7 Hrs). / Nayapul – Pokhara ( Approx. 45 kms / 1 hour )
Today is our longest trek through the forest of oak, and alpine flowers. Our final destination, the large Gurung village of Ghandruk, offering breathtaking views of Annapurna South, Gangapurna, Machhapuchhre, Annapurna III, Hiunchuli, and other magnificent mountains. We explored the scenic route on our way back from Ghandruk, with stunning views of Annapurna South, Hiunchuli, Fishtail, and Gangapurna Mountains. We eventually reach Nayapul, followed the Modi Khola. Lunch at this trek point. Late afternoon drive to Pokhara where we check into Hotel Temple Tree Resort & Spa. In the afternoon, we provide you with a comp relaxing foot massage at the hotel’s spa center. It’s a lovely boutique hotel set in the hills of the Western Himalayas. Poolside rooms with balconies, infinity pool, great restaurant with all meals included traditional Asia spa with Nepalese treatments. Meals included breakfast and lunch.
Overnight at Hotel Temple Tree Resort & Spa, Pokhara
May 9 – Adventure morning and tour of Pokhara
Morning free to relax or explore some local trails this town is called the gateway of adventure with so much to do. In Pokhara, you can book things like boating on the lake, white water rafting on Seti or Trishuli River, bungee jumping, mountain biking or sightseeing to the World Peace Pagoda and International Mountain Museum.
We suggest advance booking on our Microflight as all our past groups love this most! Or the Zipflyer here is said to be the steepest and longest zip line in the world. My fave is paragliding off a mountain cliff for stunning views of the lakes and valleys of the Annapurna range.
To reserve this selection, simply include it in your order during the checkout process.
|Ultra Light Aircraft Experience – $195 pp Maximum passenger weight 220 lbs.|
|The Pokhara Ultra Light Aircraft experience offers visitors a thrilling and unforgettable aerial adventure over the breathtaking landscapes of Nepal’s Annapurna Mountain Range. Participants board a lightweight, small-engine plane, designed for optimum visibility and agility. The skilled pilot navigates through the skies, flying over picturesque valleys, enchanting lakes, and verdant hills, providing stunning glimpses of snow-capped peaks and pristine natural beauty. This captivating experience provides photographers with unique opportunities to capture some of the world’s most striking panoramas. The Pokhara Ultra Light Aircraft experience is an exhilarating way to appreciate and admire the awe-inspiring majesty of Nepal’s rugged terrain.|
In the afternoon, we embark on a tour of Pokhara’s captivating sights, starting with the sacred Bindabasini Temple, followed by the mystical Gupteswor Mahadev Temple situated within the enigmatic Gupteswor Cave. Finally, we pay a visit to the Tibetan refugee camp in Chhorepatan, providing insights into their lives and culture. (I love this place. Please consider bringing school supplies or candy for the hundreds of kids.)
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch
Overnight at Hotel Temple Tree Resort & Spa, Pokhara
May 10 – Sarangkot and flight to Kat
As the first light of morning graces the sky, we’ll make our way to Sarangkot for a breathtaking sunrise view, up the mountain by cable cars for great photos. After this awe-inspiring experience, we’ll head back to the hotel for a delicious breakfast and prepare to check out. Transfer to Pokhara airport for your flight back to Kathmandu. – 2 PM to 2:45 PM. Our friendly team will greet you and transfer you to your hotel. Evening is free to explore Kathmandu by night.
Meals Included: Breakfast.
Overnight at hotel Shambala Kathmandu
May 11 – Mount Everest option, airport departure.
The Everest Experience on Buddha Air Flight
Early morning rise for the option of a one-of-a-kind mountain experience. In just an hour, you’ll marvel at some of the world’s tallest peaks, including the awe-inspiring Mount Everest (8,849 m), Lhotse (8,516 m), Cho Oyu (8,188 m), and Mount Makalu (8,481 m). Optional: $240 per person. Limited to 24 participants.
Experience the wonders of Nepal’s Himalayas in a unique way through a mountain flight that offers fantastic views and insight into the country’s geography. The one-hour flight takes you on a journey to the East of Nepal, where you’ll catch a glimpse of 20 of the highest peaks, including the iconic Mt. Everest, Chamlang Peak, and Langtang Lirung Peak.
Witness magnificent Himalayan peaks, lakes, and glaciers. Our flight attendant will provide you with a ‘Himalayan Peaks’ map and give you a briefing on the visible mountains, including the towering Cho-Oyu, Shisha Pangma, Mt. Everest, and Lhotse. With Buddha Air’s everyone gets a window seat. On this popular mountain flight, you’ll gain insight into the wonders of Nepal’s geography and history while enjoying a thrilling adventure that promises an unforgettable experience. Book your flight today and start your journey to the peaks of the Himalayas. (Please note mountain flights are dependent on favorable weather conditions. Rest assured, everyone will return to the hotel in time for a noon check out before transferring to the airport for your later flight on this day.)
Transfer to Airport later this afternoon.
Land price $1675 per person twin share plus $195 internal domestic flights = $1870
Prepaid gratuities: An estimated amount of $90 will be added to final invoice to cover guides, drivers, ground services, etc., making distribution easier for you. Price based on 20 participants. (Single rooms at $395. Limit two.)
Includes- 7 nights accommodation, breakfast daily, all meals during trek, services of Head guide with sherpas, transfers and sightseeing in exclusive coach, cable car ride to Sarangkot at sunrise, foot massage at Temple Tree Resort and Spa in Pokhara, all treking fees, taxes and entrance fees.
Not Included – air to Kathmandu, evac insurance, meals not listed, optional tours.
Itineraries are prepared up to a year ahead and things can change. Modifications may be made. All rooms are run of house.
Have you read the Trip Tips yet? Then Click Here
Hey there, congrats on finding the ever-important Trip Tip page! Now that you’re here make sure to read these trip tips carefully! They’re here to help answer any questions you may have and ensure you have an awesome vacation. Don’t forget to bookmark this page and stay on top of any updates we post here. Treat it like meeting deadlines for taxes, mortgage payments, or car loans – staying organized and informed will make your trip stress-free and enjoyable.
Prepare to be awed by some of the world’s finest scenic wonders to the roof of the world! It’s not just the breathtaking moments of trekking along the iconic Annapurna route but also the thrills we added for you in the Kingdom of Nepal. We’ve sent a dozen groups here and it is loved by all.
At present we have a wonderful group of 14 travel lovers. All tour operators price on group size. We need a few more people to protect our price so please tell your friends now! Shared the trip link on your social media.
Trip Tips are designed to answer trip-related questions. It’s your responsibility to read this information. Updates and addendums will be posted here. Some travelers have lost their entire trip for not reading what we send on visas, air details, inoculations, etc. Check back from time to time.
- FINAL PAYMENT DUE Feb 1, 2024 Wetravel is our data management company, it allows you to pay by check electronically without a fee. Simply follow the instructions. Credit cards will be assessed a processing fee at time of purchase. As a small business, this helps mitigate costs and allows us to give you the very best price. If you prefer to use the mail, make your payment to AFS or Adventures For Solo Travelers, 1907 Daniel Green Ct., Smyrna GA 30080
Your fearless GTL (Gracious Trip Leader, not a guide but a liaison between our guides and group to ensure
things run smoothly.) GTL Joey McGlammory has successfully led two AFS groups in Tanzania for Mount Kilimanjaro climbs and an Inca Trail group up Machu Picchu. His guiding and leadership adventures began in 2013, primarily focusing on events involving athletes with disabilities. Before that, he had already participated in numerous endurance events. With over thirty years of experience in the health and fitness industry, Joey is a certified rehabilitation fitness therapist and personal trainer.
His noteworthy accomplishments include:
– 3 World’s Toughest Mudders (24-hour nonstop endurance race)
– 5 Spartan World Championships
– 7 Spartan Beast Races up Mt. Killington
– 6 100-mile trail and road races
– 27 Full Marathons
– 48 Half Marathons
– 18 10-mile road races
– 64 10k road races
– 1 60-hour nonstop endurance event, among others.
- Read the revised Heading Abroad with AFS, especially if you are new to AFS.
- Ensure your passport is valid 6 months after return date with two blank pages – these are Visa pages, not addendum pages. We recommend renewing your passport well ahead of any planned international travel. Take a photo of your passport to store in the cloud or bring a copy. If you lose your passport, US embassies now except a digital copy from your email. Also good to scan any docs, Covid test, trip tips, etc.
- To speed through US Customs download Mobile Passport. Look in your App Store for details.
- Notify bank and cc company of travel dates so they don’t block charges.
- All airline rules differ. It is imperative to read your airline rules on their website to ensure a smooth departure! Always check your flight before departure.
Visa Requirements: US citizens need a Visa and it’s so easy now on airport arrival. Bring $30 USD in newer bills. Out visa form there. This form to pay at visa counter. Get receipt and exit to baggage claim. Visa is only good for 15 days.
Note on phone data – Unlike other countries Nepal does not have data plans. People in our past groups came home with $2000 bills because they never turned off their phone data plan. Only use data when you have wifi!
Fitness level – 3 You must be in good physical shape for this fitness trip. For example, you should be able to complete 5K in 40 minutes. See more below in trekking notes.
General Air Info – Consider flying in early to ensure you’ll be there once trip begins. Always download and use your airlines app! Use app to track your booking, delays, bags, to show boarding pass and to contact them. If you have a flight problem go to the airline’s website “contact us” page or reach them by text, social media, Skype or call their international number. Also, premium credit cards often offer many air perks, assistance, insurance, lounge passes, global entry and more. Read more at www.tpg.com for best cards. Many say they want to fly business class but don’t realize fare range from 4K to 9K. We do have two good contacts that can get the sea seats at nearly half cost. Alen@skylux.com or ali@business–class.com. Tell them Suzy sent you.
Doing Own Air– Sometimes we offer group air but find few people book sometimes find better rates on own direct from hometown. With this small group it is impossible as group air requires a minimum of 16 people needed to reserve seats. Nowadays people prefer to do their own air for more flexibility. Air dates May 3-11. Land starts May 4.
It is easy to arrange your own round-trip air from USA to Kathmandu Nepal- KTM. Dates May 3 to 11. On Google flights, you’ll find a dozen airlines flying here. Best prices, schedules and routes are on either Turkish airlines -TK or Qatar Airways- QR. Cheapest air is always from JFK so sometimes it’s wise to add flight to New York to fly from there. Turkish has good rates now from Newark.
We like Google Flights. 3rd-party booking engines like Expedia, make it easy to book, but it is nearly impossible to handle air problems. Buy direct from airline or pay a travel agent to ticket you. If you need help air, our guy Delhi can help, email email@example.com with your exact air dates, destination, passport name and details with birthdate.
Everyone will meet up May 4 at hotel where guide will brief us on everything and then continue into the awesome city tour. Next day May 5 you have internal flight to Pokhara at 8:50 AM. On arrival there, guide team will brief you on embarking your trek. See all trek details below
Airport Transfers- We will have one group airport pick up to accommodate as many people as possible. If your times fall outside the group, simply take a taxi to the Shambala Hotel see link on itinerary for address.
(With travelers arriving and departing on different days and times, it is insurmountable to manage. Group air airport transfers are based on set time. Without group air, there can no longer be any pick-ups or drop-offs. Unfortunately, now like other tour companies, transfers are your responsibility. (We’ve spent weeks each trip making spreadsheets of each person’s air to send to the supplier and then flights change. We then hire a guide, driver and pay airport parking fees. Last year in groups only half showed up as guides waited hours looking for others. Sometimes no AFSers showed up without informing us.) Transfers are not expensive. First, google your arrival airport website to see transfer tab. Suggestions to appear like airport bus, taxi details, Uber and more. Then connect on group Facebook page to set up sharing transfer cost if you like. If you go early and check-in AFS hotel before group arrives, it’s your responsibility to change rooms with your roommate if necessary day one when trip begins.)
Baggage– Think light to ease your burden, not like you’re fleeing your homeland. You change hotel properties several times. 1 carry-on bag & 1 medium suitcase not to exceed 45lb checked bag – weigh on a bathroom scale. If you overpack by adding pre-or post-trip luggage, make prior plans as to where to stow the excess luggage. You may be responsible for any overage charges. Apple AirTags work great to track checked bags when the airline cannot, also good for carry-on. Leave space for great souvenirs. Be sure to attach ID inside and out of carry-on and checked bag.
Packing- google weather in May in Kathmandu a week before you go. The higher you go, the cooler it gets. Think layers each day. Packing list below. Read General Packing 101 in Heading Abroad with AFS
Cool travel hacks from our AFSers! Pack overnight outfit in your carry-on, liquid IV packets to hydrate, use packing cubes, downy wrinkle spray, Apple AirTags, extra nylon bag to check laundry home, tons of US dollars for extra tips, fully charged travel banks, less is more, get global entry.
Electric– Don’t forget a portable backup charger, cords, gadgets, etc. Cell phones and tablets do not need a converter; you only need an adapter plug. AFSers often leave charger cords in room, so be sure to double-check your room before check out. All properties have hairdryers. See https://www.power-plugs-sockets.com
Money Matters – Always bring some cash! You will need some cash for personal tipping, meals, and shopping. $200 cash should suffice. Change currency on arrival at airport, bank, or hotels or withdraw local currency from an ATM. Note -independent ATMs are risky due to skimmer scams. Safest ATMs are at airport and banks. Always shield your pin number when entering. Bring newer bills 2016 on as some countries won’t take old or slightly damaged bills.
Master Card and Visa widely accepted. Amex rarely accepted. Credit cards are far safer than using your debit card. I use my credit card for most purchases. Many cards now offer no foreign transaction fees. (Some countries in Africa and Asia require new bills dated after 2016. Older bills not accepted when changing money.)
Currency Exchange Rate $1= 133 Nep Rupee – the dollar is real strong for you now so this is a great rate.
Follow the link below to create a conversion cheat sheet
Gratuities – It’s protocol to tip our local guides, assistants, porters, cooks, wait staff, drivers and ground staff. Guidelines have increased globally. $90 will be added to invoice. Details on the breakdown of how to tip your team of Sherpas is detailed below. Please understand this is only the suggested minimum. For ease of distribution, your GTL will tip the different ground services for the entire group each day.
Tipping on own – If service is stellar, feel free to give more directly. All we tourists leave behind is our reputation. I carry a stash of US ones in an envelope to draw from as needed. Porters – AFSers roll bags to their room. If you use a porter, please tip. For group lunches or dinners included, please leave $2 for waitstaff!
Communication– Internet is available. With smartphones, be sure to check with your provider for rates and coverage for international phone plans before departure. Data Roaming rates can be expensive. To reach home – Texting, iMessage, WhatsApp, and Facebook messaging when using WIFI. Be cautious using public Wi-Fi without using VPN. Without VPN never open attachments or view financial or personal accounts on the Internet while abroad. Phone calls, text messages, and data usage of all kinds, it is crucial to understand that, unless you are connected to Wi-Fi, every use of your phone incurs a data toll. That means that viewing and downloading email, browsing the web, viewing social media, and mapping all incur data charges, as do applications that we sometimes assume to be “free,” such as Skype and WhatsApp. Unless you are connected to Wi-Fi, however, WhatsApp is using cellular data, so you are getting charged at your provider’s international roaming data rate. Facebook Messenger Phone is an easy free way to make calls.
Get Smart: Bottled water is always best abroad, as our gut isn’t accustomed to local tap water. Stay hydrated.
- Remind full of pickpockets in big cities, especially at night. Never carry your passport outside of the room.
- Travel health – Drink bottled water. Avoid street foods. Bring Imodium or anti-diarrhea medicine. Bring sunscreen. Load up on antioxidants like vitamin C to zinc.
Health – Bring Imodium just in case. All our meals are pure and water is filtered. Bottled water provided throughout. Don’t use ice outside hotels. (Poverty – you may witness an eyeful of poverty omnipresent. The beauty is found in its humanity with dignity inherent in the spirit of the people here who possess virtues of simplicity, hard work, gentleness and perseverance. No beggars will harass you. Humbling to see them so happy with so little.)
Retail Therapy – Even non shoppers love the colorful markets and bazaars here with the coolest stuff – spinning prayer wheels, singing bowls, Pashmina scarves, teas, spices, cool trekking clothes, beaded jewelry and amazing handicrafts. Bargain all.
Accommodations –Accommodations – Our itinerary has links to each hotel. Note that hotels can change, but it’s rare.
AFS Optionals: We have a wonderful free day in Pokhara because there’s so much to do. Our past clients love paragliding $120 or the ultra light flights $195 we will send details and get a head count later. Also we will get count for your Everest flights on Buddha Air.
Leisure Time – For your free time, it’s best to arrive and ask our local expert guides for suggestions. We notice many newer clients pre-plan many activities on the AFS trip well before they arrive, often with disappointing results. Our daily itineraries are pretty full, but there will be some free time. Expert travelers revel in the element of surprise in a new destination and allow the wind to blow them where it will. Use Google Maps on your phone to find everything nearby.
Amending tour pre-or post-trip. We honor your independent spirit, but encourage you to extend more days at the trip’s end when you’re acclimated well to the destination. If you add another country, we often see many AFSers on Facebook urging others to join them what do you consider the cost of tours, transport, hotels, etc. Stopovers are great to add, but understand AFS has no responsibility for the quality of your trip.
Private Facebook Group Page – The benefit of the Private FB Group Page is that you have an opportunity to introduce yourself to your fellow travelers before departure and share trip photos during and after the tour. The link can be found in your Wetravel welcome letter after your initial deposit. (We found that some never read the Trip Tips jumping right to the Private FB Group Page assuming they will get all trip info needed. Often, they only receive rumors or misinformation. All important information is ALWAYS emailed to each participant and posted in Trip Tips under UPDATES. Nobody misses a thing.)
Emergency Contact – AFS phone or text 770-432-8225, or email us at https://www.afstravelers.com/contact-us/ More contacts will be provided with your Final Docs email 2 to 3 weeks before departure. Your guide can handle a call home for a true emergency. Do not expect to use your trip leader’s cell phone; you’ll need to use your own.
Cancellation Penalty – At booking, we sent you our terms and conditions. Click here for our Terms & Conditions and here for for Cancellation refund policy In part it states “a written request for cancellation through email or text with your name and cancellation specifics to 770-432-8225. Please be aware that when a refund is due, a $155 administrative fee will be charged for each cancellation. Any cancellation after November 28, 2023 there are no there are no refunds for any cancellation after November 28, 2023 refunds.
Travel Insurance– While travel insurance is optional, in today’s world we highly encourage you to get standard coverage to cover trip interruption and cancellation. Best source for all is www.insuremytrip.com.
- Click here to Purchase Travel Insurance online
Travel Psychology 101 – Prepare for your departure joyfully with no contempt before investigation upon arrival. Please understand that with travel, things are not like at home and changes may occur. Great trips work best for those with an open mind, flexible attitude and adventuresome spirit. If changes occur, embrace them with serendipity. Who knows?… The unexpected may prove to be a better experience. Adapt and go with the flow with a laid-back attitude. Be spontaneous. Be tolerant of foreign cultures in respecting their centuries of traditions. Embrace the differences. Be curious, not shy. Smile – locals will sense your energy of kindness and kindness always begets kindness. Our common goal is to experience different cultures, make new friends, get great photos, have large fun, and return home safely with memories worthy of recollection.
The best spirit of an Explorer requires the openness of a child – Suzy
“When traveling, remember that a foreign country isn’t designed to make you comfortable. It’s designed to make its own people comfortable.” – Clinton Fadiman
Please note that AFS is non-partisan – With our homogeneous groups, we all want to focus on the common denominator – our love of travel. In today’s divisive world, we suggest members not discuss politics and if you must, please practice my rule of TOK: Tolerance, Open-mindedness and Kindness.
Please be advised that the operation of some tours may need to be rearranged or modified to suit local conditions, but all activities stated will be included. We are here for you to address any questions about your trip. In time, we believe travel will begin to normalize with less rules and we appreciate your cooperation until then. Now more than ever before, travelers value the privilege of travel to explore our world. You’ve been waiting so long, it’s time for recess!
Specific Trek Details Below
HEALTH AND FITNESS: There are no specific health requirements for entry into Nepal. Your health condition must be sound as you will be climbing to above 4000m. You should consult your doctor for up-to-date information regarding vaccinations, high altitude medication, and medications for any reasonably foreseeable illnesses.
Please be aware that you will be in remote areas and away from medical facilities for some time during this trip. We recommend that you carry a personal First Aid kit. Trekking in Nepal often involves long days of walking on rugged terrain and steep ascents at high altitudes. Being physically fit helps you cope with the demands of the trial and reduces the risk of injury or exhaustion. A well-planned training program, including cardiovascular exercises, strength training, and flexibility exercises, will prepare your body for the physical challenges of trekking.
ALTITUDE: AMS (acute mountain sickness) can be a serious issue. It is the result of the failure of the body to adapt to high altitudes and can affect anyone, regardless of age or fitness. It usually occurs above 1,800 meters and the likelihood of being affected increases as you ascend. The way to reduce the effects of altitude is to ascend slowly, 300 meters per day above 3,000 meters until you have acclimatized. Poor acclimatization can result in headaches, nausea, sleeplessness, difficulty breathing and swelling of fingers and glands. The only cure for AMS is to descend to a lower altitude and your guide’s decision on this matter is final. There is a possibility of AMS in any trek that passes through altitudes above 4000 meters.
Proper acclimatization is vital for avoiding altitude sickness, which can be potentially life-threatening. Planning a gradual ascent and allowing your body time to adjust to the decreasing oxygen levels can help prevent altitude-related illnesses. Your expert guides will direct you. Maintaining adequate fluid intake is essential. Please advise your guide if you feel more severe symptoms and do not medicate yourself without discussing it with them first.
SAFETY AND EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS: Understanding potential hazards and risks associated with trekking in Nepal, such as weather-related dangers, wildlife encounters, and health issues, is crucial for a safe adventure.
INSURANCE: Travel insurance is not included in the trip price. We recommend that you take out comprehensive travel insurance prior to your trek. Your travel insurance must provide cover against personal accident, medical expenses, emergency evacuation and repatriation (including helicopter evacuation) and personal liability. We like World Nomads.
CLIMATE: May is the dry season and best time to visit Nepal. Beautiful weather in the regions you are going but in the mountains weather changes. The variation of climate is directly proportional to the altitude. For this trekking, trekking routes are often passing through a range of altitudes from 850m upwards. Between about 2700m and 3000m a cool temperate climate prevails, and you should expect a cool summer and very cold temperatures in the winter. Above 3000m, even if the daytime is sunny and quite warm, the temperature will drop sharply as soon as the sun goes down. The weather in the mountains is notoriously changeable, so always be prepared for a change in conditions and note that if severe or dangerous weather conditions occur your guide’s decision on any course of action is final.
ACCOMMODATION: Accommodation is in lodges and teahouses and is of a basic standard. Rooms may be twin or multi-share, with basic shared toilet facilities. Hot showers are available in some places for a small charge. It is a good idea to pack wet-wipes to freshen up, especially useful when you reach high altitudes where the water can be very cold. It is not recommended to wash your hair when you are at higher altitudes and where the outside air is cold, as you run the risk of getting a chill when your wet hair takes a long time to dry.
Lodges usually have a common room where later in the day, when people start to arrive from their day’s trek there might be a stove that is lit to keep warm. The lodges provide clean bedding, but you may want to pack a sheet sleeping bag for peace of mind.
FOOD AND DRINK: Meals will be provided in the local tea houses and lodges. These tea houses have limited menus. Meals are generally simple but filling. Although mineral water in plastic bottles can be found along the way in many places, you should try to avoid using this. Plastic bottles are a serious problem on the trekking routes as there is no way to dispose of them. Instead, you should use water purification tablets, a water filter or ask for boiled water at the lodges. Carry a supply of snacks and energy bars to maintain your energy levels during the trek. High-energy, lightweight, and non-perishable options such as trail mix, dried fruits, nuts, and energy bars are ideal choices. These additional items contribute to your overall comfort and safety during the trek, ensuring a more enjoyable and stress-free experience.
CLOTHING AND TREKKING GEAR: The right gear can significantly affect your comfort, safety, and overall trekking experience. Investing in appropriate clothing, footwear, and equipment that suit the specific conditions of your chosen trek is crucial.
Clothing: Dressing in layers is essential for trekking in varying weather conditions and temperatures. Your clothing should be made from moisture-wicking, quick-drying materials to keep you comfortable and dry.
Footwear: Investing in quality, comfortable footwear is crucial for a successful trek. Blisters or sore feet can significantly impact your experience.
Hiking boots: Sturdy, waterproof, and well-fitting boots that provide ankle support and have been broken in prior to the trek.
Socks: Moisture-wicking, quick-drying socks (preferably merino wool or synthetic) in different thicknesses for varying temperatures and conditions.
Sandals or camp shoes: Lightweight, comfortable footwear to wear at the end of the day or during river crossings.
Backpack and rain cover: Choose a backpack with a capacity suitable for your trek’s duration and the amount of gear you’ll be carrying. Look for a backpack with a comfortable, adjustable harness system, padded hip belt, and multiple compartments for organization. A rain cover will protect your gear from getting wet in case of rain or snow.
Trekking poles: Trekking poles help reduce the impact on your joints, improve balance, and increase stability on uneven terrain. Choose adjustable poles with comfortable grips and shock-absorbing features to suit your needs.
- CLOTHING AND ACCESSORIES: You can purchase or rent anything you need on arrival.
- Down jacket for the morning and evening
- Light windproof jacket for day time
- Sleeping Bag (not mandatory)
- Warm Gloves
- Sun Glasses
- Warm Thermal T-Shirt/Vest
- Light Cotton T-Shirt
- Trousers for trekking and evenings
- Rain Coat
- Tried/Tested Trekking Shoes. Please avoid new shoes during the trek. If you need to buy a new one, then start trying/testing as sometimes new shoes may bruise your feet.
- Sandal/sports shoes
- Warm Cap and Sun block Cap
- Personal first aid kits
- Water Bottle
- Personal snacks and power bars and can food
- Sun block cream
PERSONAL DAY BAG PACKING: Each porter carries 20 kg so you should pack 10 kgs of baggage, sharing one porter between two persons. The things which are carried by porters will not be available to you during the day as the porters usually leave early and do not walk with you.
You will need to bring a comfortable medium sized daypack to carry the things you will need during the day. This should have a waist strap or (better) a padded waist belt. Your daypack should contain all that you need during the day. This should consist of personal medicines, warm clothes for when you stop, a water bottle, a camera, sunscreen, lip salve and maybe waterproofs depending on when you’re trekking.
TREKKING STAFF: You will be provided with government licensed, experienced trek guided assisted by the porters who transport your baggage with one porter for every two trekkers (Maximum 20 Kgs per porter). The guide is in overall charge of the trek and looks after you. This is the person you should go to with any problems, concerns or questions. Our guides are highly trained in all aspects of trekking, conservation, high altitude medicine, first-aid and emergency procedures. They are professionals selected for their knowledge and passion for Nepal and its peoples. However, you should remember that they are local guides and their English may sometimes be quite basic and limited to trek related topics. Usually, porters will have a more basic understanding of English. Please try to speak slowly and clearly to make communication easier.
KNOWLEDGE OF LOCAL CUSTOMS AND CULTURE: Respecting local customs and traditions is important for fostering positive relationships with the communities you encounter during your trek. Awareness of cultural norms and expectations can enhance your experience and ensure a harmonious journey.
Dress modestly in Buddhist temples and religious sites, Guide will advise. Wear clothing that covers your shoulders, chest, and knees to respect local dress codes and cultural norms. Remove shoes before entering temples or homes: Follow local customs by removing your footwear when entering religious sites or private residences. Seek permission before taking photographs: Always ask for permission before taking photos of people, religious sites, or ceremonies.
COMMUNICATION: MOBILE PHONES AND INTERNET: Please note, as you will be often trekking through valleys and will not always be close to mobile towers, mobile phone reception can be very patchy. Usually, lodges have power points to recharge your mobile, although this sometimes can be at an extra charge.
TIPPING: Tipping is a personal and voluntary matter and is not included in the trip price. If you wish to reward the efforts of those who have worked to make your trek the best they can, we suggest the following: USD 10-12 per day will be shared among the whole staff, including porters. We will add $90 to your final invoice which will cover gratuities for the entire trip.