2024 October 9 to 21
Prices listed are per person:
Shared Room: $8198
Private Room: $9798
Explore the historical and religious landmarks of Kathmandu, including Durbar Square and Swayambhunath Stupa, showcasing traditional architecture and cultural history spanning 2,000 years.
Immerse yourself in the religious diversity of Kathmandu, with Hinduism and Buddhism coexisting harmoniously.
Visit Pashupatinath Temple and engage with Hindu Sadhus for a unique spiritual experience.
Embark on a scenic flight to Pokhara, the gateway to Annapurna trekking routes, offering breathtaking views of the Himalayan peaks and serene experiences.
Trek through picturesque landscapes from Shauli Bazaar to Ghandruk, experiencing the hospitality of the Gurung people.
Witness a breathtaking sunrise at Poon Hill, offering panoramic views of the Himalayas.
Marvel in the picturesque Newari Village of Bandipur, frozen in time and offering panoramic views of the Annapurna range.
Experience the diverse wildlife of Chitwan National Park through activities like a jeep safari, morning boat ride, walking safari, and cultural dance, providing a well-rounded exploration of the park’s natural beauty.
This tour has us spending time in Kathmandu, the vibrant capital of Nepal surrounded by majestic mountains. The adventure unfolds with visits to Kathmandu Durbar Square and Swayambhunath Stupa, offering glimpses of traditional architecture and cultural richness. We will also explore Bhaktapur Durbar Square, a haven of cultural handicrafts. Engage in pottery-making, savor Juju Dhau yogurt, and delve into the spiritual at Pashupatinath Temple and Boudhanath Stupa.
Our journey continues to Pokhara, a scenic city nestled amidst nature’s wonders. Enjoy a boat ride on Phewa Lake and explore Lakeside at your leisure. Then onto the trekking portion of this amazing tour. Spend 4 days exploring this beautiful country on foot. Visit many villages along the way and interact with the kind and generous locals.
Venture to Bandipur, a time-frozen Newari Village, and then to Chitwan National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, for a diverse wildlife experience. The adventure includes a Morning Jeep Safari, Walking Safari, and Tharu Cultural Dance. Then return to Kathmandu for our departure from this enchanting journey.
Day 1: Arrival Kathmandu
Welcome to Kathmandu, the capital of Nepal, surrounded by four major mountains; Shivapuri, Phulchowki, Nagarjun and Chandragiri. The city of Kathmandu boasts a rich history that spans almost 2,000 years, a fact gleaned from an inscription found in the valley. Its prevailing religious affiliations are predominantly Hindu, closely followed by Buddhism. This diverse religious landscape welcomes people of various faiths, contributing to Kathmandu’s cosmopolitan culture. Nepali serves as the lingua franca of the city.
Tonight, we will meet for a short briefing and allow time for any last minute purchases for essentials before enjoying our Welcome Dinner.
Day 2: Kathmandu Durbar Square – Swayambhunath Stupa – Patan Durbar Square
This morning we will explore Kathmandu Durbar Square and Swayambhunath Stupa, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The square, with its palaces and temples, showcases traditional architecture and rich cultural history. Highlights include the former Royal elephant stable, Freak Street, and the temple of Living Goddess, Kumari. Later, enjoy a rickshaw ride from Hanuman Dhoka to Thamel, a vibrant area with shops and local life.
Today we will also visit Swayambhunath Stupa. Located on a conical hill, this ancient stupa, also known as the Monkey Temple, is over 2,500 years old. Adorned with Buddha’s eyes, it offers panoramic views of the valley. Accessible by a steep stairway or a car road, the stupa is a UNESCO World Heritage Cultural Site.
This afternoon we will visit Patan Durbar Square, 5 km south of Kathmandu. Known for its artistry, the city boasts Buddhist and Hindu temples, as well as over 1000 monuments with exquisite wood and stone carvings. Explore the former Royal palace turned museum, courtyards, and pagoda temples, including Mul Chowk, Sundari Chowk, and Keshav Narayan Chowk. Experience the Magic of Singing Bowl by Master for relaxation and spiritual rejuvenation.
Day 3: In and Around Kathmandu
This morning we will explore Bhaktapur Durbar Square, a city rich in religious architecture. Its clean, narrow streets lead to hidden temples and bustling artisan workshops. Discover the local lifestyle, with communal courtyards for bathing and socializing. Bhaktapur is renowned for cultural handicrafts, making it an ideal shopping destination for unique souvenirs. Key attractions include the 55 Window Palace, Golden Gate, and Nyatapola Temple.
Engage in a pottery-making session and savor the world-famous Juju Dhau yogurt. In the afternoon, visit Pashupatinath Temple, a UNESCO World Heritage Site on the Bagmati River, dedicated to Lord Shiva. Experience the spiritual side with a unique interaction with Hindu Sadhus, gaining insights into their ascetic lifestyle and beliefs.
We will conclude the day at Boudhanath Stupa, one of Nepal’s largest spherical stupas, surrounded by over 50 monasteries. Witness the calming evening ambiance with butter lamps and the scent of sage. Interact with monks at Shakya monastery, where the Hi-Lama will bless you with a Khada Himalayan Silk Scarf, providing a memorable spiritual experience.
Day 4: Kathmandu – Pokhara
After breakfast we will head to Kathmandu airport for our flight to Pokhara.
Pokhara, the third largest city in Nepal, serves as the gateway to many Annapurna trekking routes. Nestled at an altitude of 827m and 200km west of Kathmandu, it’s often hailed as the most beautiful place in the region. The city boasts natural wonders, including picturesque lakes and breathtaking views of the Himalayan peaks. With a span of 8 km from north to south and 6 km from east to west, Pokhara maintains a more spacious and green layout compared to Kathmandu. The Seti Gandaki river flowing through the city adds to its charm.
Upon arrival in Pokhara, we will be transferred to our hotel and check-in.
In the afternoon, we will indulge in a one hour delightful boat ride on Phewa Lake, followed by a visit to the Island Temple of “Taal Barahi.” Phewa Lake, the second largest in Nepal, is the focal point of Pokhara’s allure. The lake offers a serene rowing experience, and the island temple adds to its enchantment.
As the evening unfolds, feel free to explore the Lakeside area at your leisure.
Day 5: Pokhara – Shauli Bazzar Via Nayapul – Trek to Ghandruk
Enjoy a hearty breakfast this morning at the hotel before we embark on a scenic journey. We will head towards Nayapul, covering a distance of approximately 47 kilometers in about an hour and a half. Then we will continue the drive to Birethanti, where permit formalities will be completed for our trekking. We will then proceed towards Shauli Bazaar. Along the route, enjoy views of the expansive valleys, terraced hills, and bamboo groves.
The trek kicks off from Shauli Bazaar, involving a steady ascent of 2 to 2 ½ hours through charming villages and terraced farmlands. We will deviate from the main road, follow the trekking trail, and encounter a signboard marking the entrance to Ghandruk. Brace yourself for a brief but steep 20-minute climb before reaching the picturesque village of Ghandruk.
Ghandruk, a sizable Gurung village in Nepal’s Annapurna region, welcomes with friendly locals and provides a rich insight into the history and culture of the Gurung people.
Drive Duration: 2 ½ – 3 hours
Trek Duration: 3 – 4 hours
Day 6: Trek to Tadapani
Indulge in a relaxed breakfast surrounded by hills before we head north to Tadapani. Kick off the trail from the central village square, navigating a gradual ascent as the path narrows and venture into a dense sub-tropical forest, eventually reaching a Lonely Planet lodge nestled within. Ensure to stock up on water, as no shops are available until Bhaise Kharka. The undulating trail, punctuated by occasional steep climbs, makes for a pleasantly manageable trek. Arrive at Bhaise Kharka, a jungle clearing with two basic lodges—ideal for a refreshing pit stop.
We will then continue the trek towards Tadapani, a gentle climb through a dense, towering rhododendron forest. Tadapani, is situated at 2,630 meters, and is a quaint village adorned with hotels and souvenir shops. Here, revel in breathtaking views of Annapurna South (7,219 m), Hinchuli (6,441 m), and Machapucchre (Mt. Fishtail) (6,997 m).
The name “Tadapani” translates to ‘Far Water,’ reflecting the earlier necessity for villagers to embark on a nearly 30-minute journey to fetch water before the installation of water pipes.
Trek Duration: 4 – 4 ½ hours
Day 7: Trek to Ghorepani
Today our journey starts with a descent down stone steps from the village square, leading us to a serene brook. We will cross a charming bridge and begin the ascent through a lush rhododendron forest. Eventually, we’ll reach a quaint tea shop perched atop a ridge, offering a perfect spot for a brief rest. Resume the trek along an undulating trail, savoring the breathtaking views accompanied by the melody of chirping birds and the backdrop of a clear blue sky adorned with occasional clouds.
Then, continue the adventure to Banthanti by the river, climbing through dense forests and encountering cascading waterfalls along the way. Our ultimate destination is Deorali (3193m), the trek’s highest point, where a well-deserved lunch awaits.
After a short rest, we will resume the trek on an undulating trail through the forest along a ridge, eventually arriving at Ghorepani. The views from this vantage point are nothing short of spectacular—lush green valleys and a dense rhododendron and magnolia forest to the south, while Annapurna and Dhaulagiri gleam under the northern sun.
Ghorepani is predominantly inhabited by the Magar people, an ethnic community with a rich cultural heritage.
The entire trek spans a duration of 5 ½ hours, promising a memorable and enchanting adventure.
Day 8: Hike to Poonhill – Trek to Ulleri – Pokhara
Today, we will rise with the sun, eager to witness what could be the most breathtaking sunrise of our lives. Embarking on a one-hour trek to Poon Hill just before daybreak, we will find ourselves captivated by the unfolding spectacle of vibrant oranges painting the sky over the majestic Himalayas—a truly divine experience. After soaking in the beauty, we will return to Ghorepani for breakfast and commence our journey back.
Descending steeply, we will reach a river and continue our descent alongside a babbling stream, arriving at Ulleri, another charming Magar settlement. Perched on a steep incline, the village boasts an impressive drainage system, among the best in the region.
Our adventure concludes with a drive back to Pokhara.
Trek Duration: 4 ½ hours
Drive Duration: 2 ½ hours to 3 hours.
Day 9: Pokhara – Bandipur
Price includes: 12 nights lodging in a shared or single room, with a private bathroom; All transportation during the tour, including 2 domestic flights; Entrance fees, TIMS and Permits; All breakfasts, 10 lunches, and 7 dinners; 1 porter for every 2 clients, luggage limit of 33PDS during hiking; HE Travel provides complimentary Medical & Evacuation Insurance for every US Resident on our group tours who does not have other coverage.
Not included: Transportation to/from Kathmandu; Meals not listed above; Drinking water during trekking portion needs to be purchased individual; Cost for hot showers and charging batteries/mobile phone during trekking; Optional activities; Personal expenses such as laundry, telephone charges, alcohol (except when provided with a meal), and gratuities for guides, drivers, and HE Travel tour director.
**Weight limit of 33 PDS during this tour as you will be trekking with 1 porter for every 2 clients. You will leave your big luggage behind during the trekking portion**
We strongly recommend the purchase of Trip Cancellation and Interruption insurance to protect your vacation investment in case of unforeseen circumstances such as flight delay, illness, or injury. Click Here to learn more about our Insurance partner.
- What if I am traveling alone?
- Most of our trips draw more single travelers than couples. When couples do join us, it’s usually because they’re looking forward to interacting with a gay group; if they wanted a holiday by themselves, they wouldn’t have signed up to travel with us. Furthermore, the activities included with our trips serve as natural ice-breakers. Within a day, you’ll be traveling with friends. You don’t need to pay the single supplement if you’re traveling alone. We’ll be happy to match you with a roommate. Pay the single supplement only if you want a bedroom to yourself. For selected trips, including cruises, we will charge half the single supplement if you request a roommate but we can’t match you with someone.
- What is the physical activity level of this tour?
Physical Activity Level
- What are the hotels like?
- All hotel/lodges in cities will be 4-5 star. Lodges while trekking will be the best available for the area and will include rooms with private bathrooms.
- Where does the tour start and end?
- The tour start and ends in Kathmandu, Nepal
- Additional Questions
- For answers to your additional questions, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 305-294-8174