custom school group & youth adventure travel specialists

Wenona Nepal Leadership and Service Expedition 2017

Wenona Nepal Leadership and Service Expedition 2017

Trip Highlights

  • Working alongside the community of Ghandruk to improve the Sanjiwani Public Health Mission
  • The sense of achievement from completing a fully supported trek in the Annapurna Himalaya range
  • Himalayan Mountain flight from Kathmandu to Pokhara return
  • Sightseeing in Kathmandu - Pashupatinath (a major Hindu shrine) and the giant Buddhist stupa at Boudhanath and the UNESCO site of Bhaktapur
  • Visiting the Fred Hollows Foundation supported Tilganga Institute of Ophthalmology
  • Momo cooking class in Kathmandu

Trip Summary

You would be hard pressed to find a better introduction to Nepal. From the atmospheric squares and temples of Kathmandu Valley we travel to the adventure capital of Nepal, Pokhara. Located on the banks of a lake with panoramic views of the Annapurna range. It is here where we venture out into the Himalaya on a fully supported six day trek escaping Nepal’s tourist trails to explore the forests which flank the lofty Annapurna peaks. The trek is designed for you to experience villages which have not felt the impact of tourism whilst also provide ample time for safe and comfortable acclimatisation. Beginning in the foothills we trek through delightful villages and rural landscapes where we take in the local way of life. Making our way to the Hindu village of Ghandruk we commence our 3.50 day service learning project at the Sanjiwani Public Health Mission. The mission offers free medical services to approximately 5,000 people and employs a doctor, nurse and a lab assistant. This public health service is currently being offered in a building is in need of repair and renovation. Exact project details will be advised closer to the departure date. We will work along-side volunteers from the community to see the project work complete. After completing the project we will bid farewell and we'll follow trails through oak and rhododendron forest and make our way to Nayapul and the end of a very memorable trek in the Himalaya. Returning to Kathmandu there is time for some last minute shopping before flying home to Sydney. This is a learning service adventure to get excited over which will help develop important life skills.

Suitability

To determine the grade of a particular adventure we consider a number of factors. These include the condition of the walking terrain, the altitude, the number of pass crossings and the length of the trek. The Nepal Village Immersion Hike & Project Adventure Trek is graded introductory. This is primarily due to the low altitude gains and the condition of the trail which is well defined and not unduly demanding. During the trek you will be walking for up to five to six hours a day at a slow but steady pace. You will need a reasonable level of fitness (remember there is no such thing as an easy trek) and we suggest 30 minutes of aerobic type exercise, (either cycling or jogging) three times a week for the three months leading up to your trek. Hill walking with a daypack in variable weather conditions is also recommended.

Itinerary

After all this time planning, preparing and training for Nepal, the time has finally arrived to depart on this exciting adventure. You will depart from Sydney bound for Nepal on a Thai International Airline's flight TG476 at 10:00am arriving in Bangkok at 3:25pm. The flight to Kathmandu does not connect and an overnight stay is required. Transfers to and from a hotel are provided. Accommodation: Best Western Amaranth TG 476 08DEC SYDBKK 1000 1525

Meals:  Nil

An early airport transfer awaits for your flight which departs at 10:30 direct to Kathmandu. Upon arriving in Kathmandu you will be met by your group leader and transferred to the comfortable and well located Radisson Hotel. We will have a pre-trip briefing in the early afternoon where arrangements will be made for the distribution of your kit bag, sleeping bag, liner, closed cell sleeping mat and down jacket and also gives you an opportunity to get acquainted with your guides. The hotel is the perfect home away from home and the staff are very familiar with WYA school groups and subsequently you will be greeted like old friends! This afternoon is at leisure to explore Kathmandu with your guide where there is an amazing range of fascinating highlights, whatever your interest. Excellent bookshops, extensive markets, and novelty and handicraft shops contrast with fantastic centers of cultural and spiritual significance - Kathmandu has more World Heritage sites than any other city in the world. In the evening and in the company of your guide you will head out for your first meal in Nepal to a local restaurant. Tomorrow will be an exciting and fascinating day exploring historic Kathmandu so we suggest an early night! Accommodation: Radisson Hotel TG 319 09DEC BKKKTM 1030 1245

Meals:  D

Visit Boudhanath boasting the world's largest Tibetan stupa, and surrounded by approximately 700 mani wheels, it is heavily patronized by faithful worshipers circling its base. Standing on the Bagmati River is the site of Pashupatinath where Nepal's largest Hindu temple is found and where on occasion cremations occur along the ghats (side of the river). We drive a short distance to the edge of the Kathmandu valley to the medieval town of Bhaktapur. This fascinating town is rich with temples, monasteries and palaces, with ornately carved features such as the famous ‘Peacock Window’. In the evening we will head out and enjoy a celebratory welcome dinner where you will have a chance to meet and engage with a Mt Everest summiteer. Accommodation: Radisson Hotel

Meals:  B,L,D

Today we visit the Fred Hollows funded Tilganga Institute of Ophthalmology where you can witness important research, eye examinations and the manufacturing of intraocular lenses. You will also have an opportunity to meet the staff who make this not for profit organisation run. We explore the the UNESCO World Heritage listed town of Bhaktapur. Here in the winding alleyways and numerous squares and temple grounds you will witness life as it has occurred for hundreds of years. Well known as a base for artists the area houses many museums and gallery's. Today we also take a Momo (similar to a dumpling) cooking class. Accommodation: Radisson Hotel

Meals:  B,L,D

This morning we take a flight west to Pokhara, Nepal’s second largest town (820m). In good weather we are greeted with sights of the entire Annapurna Range. From here we drive for an hour to a pass between two river valleys to the village of Phedi, where we commence our trek. There is no need to rush as this is a short day with plenty of time to reach our overnight stop. The trail ascends for the first hour, following a ridge through fields of bamboo clusters to magnificent rhododendron forest. Villagers greet us with “Namaste”, the traditional Nepalese greeting, as we pass their homes and continue to the ridge top where at the crest the scale of the mountains astounds us. Machapuchare (6993m), Hiunchuli (6441m) and Annapurna South (7219m) can be seen from our immediate viewpoint. Accommodation: Eco Lodge

Meals:  B,L,D

After a glorious mountain sunrise we follow the trail through rhododendron forest before continuing through a series of Gurung villages where lifestyles have not changed substantially over the centuries. After lunch we follow a well-marked trail to the prosperous village of Landruk. Accommodation: Private Eco-Campsite.

Meals:  B,L,D

High on the opposite side of the river, you can explore the village of Ghandruk. From this point, the trial descends along terraced slopes & forest down to the river. After crossing the river at New Bridge, the trail ascends steeply 500m to join with the trail from Ghandruk. From here it is a short walk to Chomrong (1960m). Chomrong is a village which offers spectacular views of Annapurna South & Machapuchare. Accommodation: Eco Lodge

Meals:  B,L,D

Our trail meanders downhill through fields and into forest of rhododendron, magnolia and lichen covered fig. We pass by waterfalls that cascade down narrow gullies that provide the perfect home for many small ferns and delicate plants such as exotic orchids bursting with colour. Accommodation: Eco Lodge

Meals:  B,L,D

It is a wonderful traverse through the forest and a fine contrast from the previous stages on the trek. We gain views of Annapurna South from Bhaisi Kharka before heading through a series of clearings that define the trail to the substantial Gurung settlement of Ghandruk (1990 meters). Our leisurely approach along these ridges with their fine mountain views ensures proper acclimatisation and the un-hurried opportunity to fully savour this magnificent scenery. Ghandruk is the second largest Gurung settlement in Nepal and provides a further insight into the lifestyles of villages that have traditionally provided the backbone of the famous Gurkha regiments. After lunch, we will visit the Sanjiwani Public Health Mission, the site of our service learning project and commence the project work. The village will be expecting your arrival so prepare for lots of noise, dancing and singing. We will first meet with the medical staff and local foreman who will conduct a safety briefing before will having a brief tour of the health mission. The group will be divided into smaller work teams and each assigned separate tasks. Some of the work across the following 3.50 days will involve debris clearing, shoveling, preparing the surfaces for painting, paintings the walls, ceilings and any exposed timber work, plastering the external mud walls, sweeping and general cleaning, light load carrying or possibly assisting the renders with their work. You will not need any specific skills or experience, just the willingness to participate and the ability to roll your sleeves up and get a little dirty (you should wear suitable clothes), all for a great cause. There will be a local professional builder supervising the project and ensuring we get all the work completed on time. The residents of Ghandruk will be ready for our arrival and some will assist with the work. Accommodation: Private Eco-Campsite.

Meals:  B,L,D

Working alongside the residents of Ghandruk will provide a rare insight into the people of Nepal and the incredible Nepali people. We will camp in a peaceful spot nearby the health mission where the local children will be delighted to pay you an afternoon visit. All meals will continue to be prepared and cooked by the World Youth Adventures cooks and regular breaks will be taken so as to keep energy levels high. Accommodation: Private Eco-Campsite.

Meals:  B,L,D

This morning we finish off the last remaining tasks before a handover ceremony will take place, a plaque will be unveiled and lots of singing and dancing will follow. We bid farewell to our friends at Sanjiwani Public Health Mission and Ghandruk and get back on the trail for the final day trekking all down hill to the village of Nayapul. Here our coach will be waiting to transport you back to Pokhara for an overnight stay. Remainder of the day is at leisure to explore the shops and cafes along the lakefront. It is important to us that this trek follows few of the commercial tea-house trails. Accordingly the route and campsites may be varied at the discretion of the group leader. Note that the walking hours include rest stops, are a guide only and can vary due to trail or weather conditions. Accommodation: Private Eco-Campsite.

Meals:  B,L,D

This morning we fly to Kathmandu. We return to the comfort of the Radisson Hotel and the rest of the afternoon will be time to do some last minute souvenir shopping before heading out for a farewell dinner where you can celebrate the previous weeks of hard work, achievements and lessons learned. Accommodation: Radisson Hotel

Meals:  B,L,D

Following breakfast, we pack our bags and transfer to the airport for our flight from Kathmandu leaving at 13:55 and arriving in Bangkok at 18:30. TG 320 22DEC KTMBKK 1355 1830 Accommodation: Best Western Amaranth

Meals:  B

TG 471 23DEC BKKSYD 0725 2045

Meals:  Nil

What's Included

  • Return Sydney to Kathmandu economy class flights with Thai International Airlines including taxes valued at $196
  • 13 breakfasts, 11 lunches, 13 dinners
  • Flight Kathmandu to Pokhara return valued at US$120
  • Two nights accommodation in Bangkok at the Best Western Airport Hotel (or similar)
  • 5 star hotel accommodation at the Radisson Hotel in Kathmandu on a twin share basis with breakfast
  • Accommodation whilst trekking in a combination of our comfortable eco lodges and private eco campsites with off the ground camp beds, mattresses and pillows
  • All internal transport by private bus including all group airport transfers
  • Gear package including kit bag (yours to keep), sleeping bag and liner, sleeping mat and down or fibre-filled jacket on trek
  • All group camping equipment
  • Expert English speaking Nepalese group leader from day 02 to 16
  • Porters to carry all personal and group equipment
  • Porters insurance, protective clothing, food and shelter for porters
  • Professional trekking crew of sirdar, guides and kitchen staff
  • All park entrance fees and trekking permits
  • Emergency group medical kit carried at all times
  • Sightseeing in Kathmandu and Bhaktapur entrance fee
  • Welcome and farewell dinner in Kathmandu
  • Pre Departure Information kit to help you plan and prepare

What's Not Included

  • Items of a personal nature such as phone calls, laundry, etc.
  • Tips (not compulsory) - approx $60 per person
  • Visa - approx $75
  • Travel Insurance - School Group special rate - students approx. $113. (17 day cover)
  • Fundraising component of $200 per student to cover the cost of the materials at the service project

Upcoming Travel Dates

 

AT A GLANCE

Duration:16 Days
Countries:Nepal
Starting Point:Sydney
Activities:Sightseeing
Trekking
Service Learning
Grade:Introductory  Click for more information
Trip Code:SOG4190