The morning will be full trip briefing. This will include a health and safety briefing as well as what you will require for the all the activities. Your leader will then take you to Thamel, one of the main bazzars in Kathmandu, where there is a huge choice of restaurant and shops. We will have lunch here before our afternoon sightseeing tour, which will take us to Pashupatinath, the largest temple complex in Nepal and one of the most scared places in the whole subcontinent dedicated to the Hindu god Shiva. The stupa of Boudhanath attracts pilgrims, particularly Tibetans, from throughout the Buddhist Himalaya.
Today we drive to Pokhara. This should take around 7 hours on mainly reasonable roads, however, there are some bumpy sections. To break the drive up there is an option to raft part of the way on the Trisuli River, which flows from the foothill of the Himalayan all the way to India. It is popular and accessible river flowing alongside the road halfway to Pokhara and is ideal for beginners and family groups with long, gentle stretches as well as more exciting sections. Those rafting will leave the bus about 2 hours form Kathmandu and meet the rafting guides by the river. There will be a full safety briefing where life jackets and helmets will be issued. Lunch is included for those rafting and we will stop for a picnic on the banks of the river. The rafting will finish near Mugling, where we will rejoin the bus and continue on to Pokhara. Please see the optional Excursion section for the rafting prices. The bus will take those not rafting to a restaurant for a relaxed lunch to wait for the others; Pokhara is located at only 1000m amongst sub-topical plants and with a delightfully warm climate and is close to the main Himalayan peaks.
From Pokhara we spend the next four day walking through conifer and rhododendron forest discovering little hamlet, where life has remind unchanged for generations. To the north lies the enormous Annapurna Massif, with the famous’ Fishtail’ mountain Machhapuchare and Annapurna South dominating the view. We use fairly distinct paths and you will be accompanied by a trekking guide and porters, so you can relax and focus on the walking and the superb views. We will also have enough staff on hand to assist with any tried young walkers. We begin in the morning with an early start and a short transfer to the start of our trek at Naya pul, where we meet our porters. A short walk following the river brings us to Birethanti, a upstream the trail now starts to climb on a well built stone staircase passing neatly terraced hillsides to picturesque Ghandrung (1951m) where we stay the night. Ghandrung is a traditional large, prosperous Gurung village and we will have time to explore the never ending maze of narrow alleyways separating neat slate-roof houses and watch the sunlight change on Annapurna South and Machhapuchare.
Though Landrung is just across the valley in order to reach it we must descend all the way to the river and the climb back up the other side of the valley. After breakfast we descend on a magnificently made stone staircase down to the Modi Khola and cross it by bridge. Its fine Gurung village, with superb views of Annapurna South and Hilunchli.
We contour round the valley before traversing across to Khare, where out trek ends . From here we drive back to Pokhara for a welcome hot shower. The rest of the day is free for sightseeing or shopping in Pokhara. There are colorful shops selling handicrafts, books and postcards or you may want to go rowing on the lake or rent a bicycle to explore the lakeside.
Today we drive to Chitwan in far south of Nepal. Nepal’s premier game park in situated in the sub tropical terrai region. You will certainly notice the humidity. The drive should take around 3-4 hours arriving at our lodge by lunctime. We stay in a small, friendly safari lodge which consists of comfortable twin-bedded huts built in a local style, each with an attached bathroom. On arrival a naturalist will introduce us to the park and give us an idea of the kind of animals that inhabit it. After lunch we will have a bullock cart ride to a local village.
We have the whole day in Chitwan . The best way of seeing the animals is by elephant back safari, and we will be very unlucky not to see at least the Indian one-horned rhinoceros and several species of deer. It is also possible to make trips along the Rapti river in dugout canoe, looking for the elusive gharial, a relative of the crocodile as well as seeing an abundance of bird life. The safari lodge has knowledgeable and helpful staff who accompany us on all the excursion. In the afternoon I the sun shining (and the water is not too cold) we have the chance to watch the elephants enjoying a bath.
Today we take the flight from Chitwan back to Kathmandu. If the flight leaves punctually there will be time in the afternoon for shopping or sightseeing in Kathmandu. You may want to visit Durbar Square, which is in the heart of the old city, hosting the old royal palace, with its intricate woodcarving and four fine towers. Outside is Kumari Chowk, home of the Kumari, the young girl who is reversed as a living goddess. Leading away from the square in all directions are narrow alleys, full of the most amazing variety of shops and stalls. In the late see the Responsible Tourism section below and our web site. The children are usually back from school after 3 pm and will be happy to meet you and show you around their home. Ask you leader to arrange this worthwhile visit for you.
After breakfast we transfer to the airport for the flight back home.