Thomas Hassall Anglican College Nepal 2017

Thomas Hassall Anglican College Nepal 2017

Trip Highlights

  • Working alongside the community of Bichok to improve and rebuild the school facilities in their village
  • The sense of achievement from completing a fully supported trek in the Annapurna Himalaya range including 3 hearty meals per day prepared by our cooks
  • Sightseeing in Kathmandu to Pashupatinath (a major Hindu shrine) and the giant Buddhist stupa at Bodhinath
  • Incredible views of the Annapurna mountain range including the fishtail mountain, Machapuchare
  • Trekking through remote communities in the Annapurna range

Trip Summary

In September 2017 you have an opportunity to be part of a team of people who will travel to Nepal to contribute in a meaningful way, assisting with the rebuild of a local school and enjoying a hike through remote villages in the Annapurna range. You would be hard pressed to find a better introduction to experiencing Nepal than joining this expedition!

From the atmospheric squares and temples of Kathmandu Valley we travel to the adventure capital of Nepal, Pokhara. Located on the banks of a huge lake and at the foot of the Annapurna range, which stretches like a giant wall, the views in all directions are incredible. It is here where we venture out into the Himalaya on a fully supported 3 day trek, escaping Nepal's tourist trails to explore the forests which flank the lofty Annapurna peaks. This short trek is designed to provide a great introduction to walking in Nepal, bursting with outstanding mountain views whilst getting away from the tea-house trails and into villages that have not felt the impact of tourism and have subsequently, retained much of their traditional charm. We will follow trails through oak and rhododendron forest and camp in serene locations that showcase dramatic views of the Annapurna range. This provides the opportunity to learn about the culture, traditions, social structure and way of life in rural Nepal.

Upon arrival at your community project site at Bichok School (1990m), you will be greeted like family and offered a warm welcome. You will spend 5 days at Bichok School conducting much needed service and essential building work. We will be refurbishing the local school building by plastering and flooring 2 classrooms and also assist in the building of the compound wall. It will be equally hard work as it will be fascinating, educational and uplifting in every sense. To assist us, there will be help from eager and appreciative local school kids and from a team of professional labourers who will ensure we complete the work we start, on time and on budget. This is a service learning adventure to get excited over! After you complete your service learning project and incredible trek, we return to Pokhara to the World Youth Adventures campsite where a shower awaits and a final celebratory meal will be enjoyed with the crew and porters.

An early morning flight back to Kathmandu will see you exploring more of this exciting city, before a final farewell dinner at a local restaurant. Our final day in Kathmandu will give us the opportunity to do some last minute shopping before our return flight home.

Suitability

The Thomas Hassall Anglican College Nepal 2017 adventure, can be undertaken by anyone with a reasonable level of health and fitness. For the community project part of your trip you will not require a certain level of strength or physical ability, just an enthusiastic and positive attitude. A project manager will direct and distribute the workloads amongst participants on a daily basis. There is no pressure to exert yourself physically beyond your limits during the project but you should be prepared to give up to 6-8 hours of physical labour each day. A certain level of fitness will be required where there is trekking involved.

This trip involves trekking for up to six or seven hours a day at a steady pace. These trips do not spend time at altitudes above 4000m and are usually a week in duration. You will need a reasonable level of fitness, to enjoy the outdoors and be in good health. * Suggested preparation: 1 hour of aerobic type exercise, (either cycling or jogging) three times a week for three months leading up to your trip. For trekking, hill walking with a daypack in variable weather conditions is also recommended. The itinerary will take place in remote areas (with basic facilities) and may involve long travel days on various types of transport. Sightseeing may be conducted on foot and all participants should be capable of carrying their own luggage from vehicle to hotel rooms.

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 Cathay Pacific Airways flight CX162 at 10:05am arriving in Hong Kong at 17:50, connecting at 19:10 and arriving in Kathmandu, same day, at 21:55. Upon arriving in Kathmandu this evening, you will be met by your group leader and transferred to the comfortable and well located Gangjong Hotel. Rest up, as tomorrow, the real adventure begins! Tomorrow will be an exciting and fascinating day exploring historic Kathmandu!

Meals:  Nil

After breakfast, we will have a pre-trip briefing 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 Tour Leader. The hotel is the perfect home away from home and the staff are very familiar with World Youth Adventures school groups and subsequently you will be greeted like old friends! Today, you will enjoy a sightseeing tour of Kathmandu. Visit Boudhanath boasting the world's largest Tibetan stupa, and surrounded by approximately 700 mani wheels, it is heavily patroned by faithful worshippers circling its base. Nearby and standing on the banks of 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 return to the hotel in the afternoon, where the rest of afternoon is at leisure. Tonight, in the company of your guide, you will enjoy a welcome dinner at a local restaurant. Accommodation: Gangjong Hotel

Meals:  B,D

After breakfast we transfer to Kathmandu’s domestic terminal to take our flight to Pokhara (827m), the main gateway for trekking in the Annapurna region. This is one of the most scenic flights in the Himalaya, as we trace the backbone of the monstrous Ganesh, Manaslu and Annapurna ranges. The flight path heads west up and over the rim of the Kathmandu Valley along the Trisuli River to Pokhara, Nepal’s second largest town. Upon arrival in Pokhara, you will meet the smiling group of porters who will accompany you on your trek for the next week. A 45minute drive from Pokhara past lovely farmland and villages will bring you to Pedhi, the start of your short, yet wonderful, hike in the Annapurnas. From here, we climb through beautiful forest and countryside for the next 3 hours and reach the hill top named Dhampus. The view from here is spectacular. The mountains we see from Dhampus include the south peaks of the Annapurna range, the Fishtail, Dhaulagiri, Hiunchuli, Lanjung Himal and other peaks. Dhampus is quiet, serene and amazingly beautiful. Dhampus is not just a mountain view point but a culturally rich village of the ethnic Gurung people. Walk approximately 3 hours Accommodation: Permanent Campsite

Meals:  B,L,D

Starting early today, we head towards the village of Bichok which will be your home for the next 5 days whilst completing your Community Project at Bichok School. The trail starts off quite gently, following the Modi River, past tea houses and small villages. Villagers greet us with “Namaste”, the traditional Nepalese greeting, as we pass their homes. After lunch we walk through neat Gurung villages and along well-worn trails busy with local people going about their lives. Life is simple and has not changed much over the centuries. It is a beautiful walk and one which gets better as the day progresses. The village of Bichok will be expecting your arrival so prepare for lots of noise, dancing and singing! We will first meet with the local foreman who will take us on a tour of the school showing us what work we will be doing. The group will be divided into smaller work teams and each assigned separate tasks. Some of the work across the following 5 days will involve plastering, flooring of the 2 classrooms and assisting with building the compound wall. Other tasks may involve debris clearing, shovelling, 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 Bichok will also participate in the rebuilding and upgrade of the classrooms. After the introductions and project briefing, you will begin some light work this afternoon, followed by some free time and a relaxing dinner at your new home for the week! Rest up tonight, as tomorrow we begin our first full day of service learning! Walk approximately 4 hours. Accommodation: Permanent Campsite

Meals:  B,L,D

Commence your important and valuable service learning project! Working alongside the locals will provide a rare insight into the incredible Nepali people. We will camp in a peaceful spot nearby the school which will also give you access to exploring more of Bichok village in your spare time, with opportunities to interact with the local school kids and villagers. 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: Permanent Campsite

Meals:  B,L,D

Continue your work repairing and upgrading the school at Bichok. Accommodation: Permanent Campsite

Meals:  B,L,D

Continue your work repairing and upgrading the school at Bichok. Accommodation: Permanent Campsite

Meals:  B,L,D

Continue your work repairing and upgrading the school at Bichok. Tonight a special celebratory dinner will be enjoyed to acknowledge your hard work and the friendships made. Accommodation: Permanent Campsite

Meals:  B,L,D

This morning we finish off the last remaining tasks before a handover ceremony takes place. A plaque will be unveiled and lots of singing and dancing will follow. We bid farewell to our friends at Bichok after a thoroughly enjoyable week and continue on our trek to Lumle via Chandrakot. Chandrakot sits high on a ridge overlooking the Modi Khola valley, which is a beautiful location for a midday break. Our trek this afternoon involves small ups and downs, through forests, past streams and fields until reaching the lowland village of Lumle. Here we are picked up and transferred back to Pokhara by private vehicle to our permanent campsite where a well deserved shower awaits, followed by another hearty dinner. Walk approximately 3-4 hours then drive 2 hours Accommodation: Permanent Camp Site

Meals:  B,L,D

This morning we bid farewell to our trekking crew and catch the early morning scenic flight from Pokhara to Kathmandu. The flight traverses the Annapurna and Manaslu ranges and provides amazing views. Upon arriving in Kathmandu we transfer by private coach to Gangjong Hotel. Today we will enjoy some more included sightseeing of fascinating Kathmandu, including Durbar Square & Swayambhunath. Tonight, enjoy an included farewell dinner where you can celebrate your hard work, achievements, lessons learnt and reminisce on all your recent incredible experiences.

Meals:  B,D

Today you will have a chance for any last minute shopping and/or sightseeing before a final farewell to our guides. We have the use of our hotel rooms for the day, due to the late departure of our flight tonight. You will then be transferred to the airport for your flight to Sydney, via Hong Kong. The Cathay Pacific Airways flight departs at 23:00 tonight arriving into Hong Kong at 07:25 on the 5th OCT 2017, connecting at 08:45 and arriving back into Sydney at 20:45

Meals:  B

What's Included

  • Return Sydney to Kathmandu economy class flights with Cathay Pacific Airways including taxes
  • 10 breakfasts, 7 lunches, 9 dinners including all meals on trek valued at USD$400
  • Internal flights Kathmandu/Pokhara/Kathmandu valued at USD$236
  • 3 star hotel accommodation at the Gangjong Hotel in Kathmandu on a twin share basis with breakfast, for the nights listed in the trip itinerary
  • 7 nights camping in permanent eco-campsites, with steel frame beds, mattresses and pillow inside
  • 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
  • Porters to carry all personal & group equipment including porter's insurance
  • All park entrance fees and trekking permits
  • Emergency group medical kit
  • Sightseeing in Kathmandu including entry fees
  • Welcome and farewell dinners in Kathmandu
  • Community project equipment, tools, transport of materials to site and a foreman to manage the project. PLEASE NOTE: Cost of materials are NOT included. Please see "Whats Not Included"
  • Pre Departure Information kit and briefing (details TBA) to help you plan and prepare
  • All internal private transport including airport transfers

What's Not Included

  • 3 x lunch in Kathmandu – allow US$5-10 per meal
  • Items of a personal nature such as phone calls, laundry, email etc.
  • Tips (not compulsory) - approx $60
  • Visa - approx US$30 for 15 day stay
  • Travel Insurance
  • Cost of materials for Community Service Project: Suggested fundraising component of US$2000 total for the group, to cover the cost of the materials required to complete the project. The more students that book on, the lower the fundraising target will be per student.
 

AT A GLANCE

Duration:11 Days
Starting Point:Sydney. From 10 to 25 participants
Activities:Service Learning / Community Project
Trekking
Sightseeing
Grade:Introductory to Moderate  Click for more information
Trip Code:SOG4012