Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Annapurna Trekking in Nepal

Annapurna Base camp Trek- Friendship World Treks

Trek:Annapurna Circuit Trek Days: 23/18
Trek dates: Daily from September to December and February to late June
Grade: Medium-Hard
Prices from: USD 1700/1342 Per Person. Excludes Flight Ticket

Highlights of the trek:
Annapurna Circuit Trek takes you to the Tibet-like country on the northern slopes of the Himalaya and the dramatic Kali Gandaki Gorge.  You will be crossing a very high pass Thorung La (5416 m) from where you will be able to see fantastic view of the mountains.  You also will be visiting Muktinath the important pilgrimage site for both Hindus and Buddhists

The Annapurna Circuit, considered one of the best trekking/hiking trails in the world, is the classic long distance trek in the Annapurna region of Nepal. A classic trek on ancient trade routes. Ascending theMarshyangdi valley. Passing Manaslu and Hinchuli. Visit old Buddhistmonastery in Braga. Explore beautiful Manang village. Crossing the Thorung-La ( 5416m). The Pilgrimage town of Muktinath, View ofDhawagiri Ice-flow. The world's deepest gorge and the Kaligandakivalley. Natural hot spring at Tatopani. Sunrise at Poonhill withmagnificent mountain views.
For more details please contact us at

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Tibet is indeed a very rich and beautiful land, located on the highest plateau on Earth at an average altitude over 4000 meter. It is nowadays the South west frontier of China. Within its borders there are more than fifteen peaks above 7000 m. among which eleven are over 8000m. It borders with Sichuan, Yunnan, Qinghai and Xinjiang; in the North, Nepal, India, Sikkim, Bhutan Burma and Kashmir form its Southern borders. The Tibet Autonomous Region with a population of over two million covers an area of 1.2 million sq. km.

Tibet has a long and complex history, written records have survived from the 7th Century A.D. however it is known that nomadic tribes populated Tibet as early as the 2nd Century B.C. and discoveries suggest a much longer history of human kind...More recent times have seen the invasion of China in 1959 and the inevitable dilution of Tibetan culture. Tibet however has proved over the years since, that its way of life has been able to withstand this influence. Power of thought and life itself overcoming the modern ravages of politics.
The journey to unlock the complexities posed by this arid mass of discovery (almost the size of Europe) begins with probably the most dramatic flight in the world. From Kathmandu, you journey the huge backbone of the High Himalayas to land deep in the heart of the Tibetan plateau. A further two hours drive by road through barren wilderness Lhasa, the capital and home to the famous Potala Palace unfolds. Lhasa remains the major focus of Buddhist worship anywhere in the world, a place for the traveler to cast away any preconceptions he or she may have and join in Tibet's journey of discovery along the way... at least for a while.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Travel information

General Information

Entry Procedures & Visa Rules

a. Tourist Visa
Visa Facility      Duration     Fee
Multiple entry    15 days     US$ 25 or equivalent convertible currency
Multiple entry    30 days     US$ 40 or equivalent convertible currency
Multiple entry     90 days    US$ 100 or equivalent convertible currency

b.    Gratis (Free) Visa  
•    Gratis visa for 30 days is available only for nationals of SAARC countries. However, for extension of visa for SAARC nationals, the rule is same as that of other nationals.

•    Indian nationals do not require visa to enter into Nepal.

For Visa Extension:
Tourists can stay for a maximum of 150 days in a visa year (Jan 1 to Dec 31) extending the visa at the rate of 2 US $ per day. However, a minimum amount of 30 US$ has to be paid for a period of 15 days or less.

(For further information, please, contact Department of Immigration, Maitighar, Impact Building, Kathmandu, Tel: 00977-1-4221996/ 4223590/ 4222453, Web: ) 

Custom Formalities

Any visitor bringing in more than 5000 US$ or equivalent amount in any other currency/currencies must declare the currency/currencies at the Customs Office in the Airport.

All baggage must be declared and cleared through the customs on arrival at the entry point. Personal effects are permitted free entry. Passengers arriving at Tribhuvan International Airport (TIA) without any dutiable goods can proceed through the Green Channel for quick clearance without a baggage check. If you are carrying dutiable articles, you have to pass through the Red Channel for detailed customs clearance.

Apart from used personal belongings, visitors are allowed to bring to Nepal free of duty: cigarettes (200 sticks) or cigars (50 sticks), distilled liquor (one 1.15 liter bottle), and film (15 rolls). You can also bring in the following articles free of duty on condition that you take them out with you when you leave: binoculars, movie or video camera, still camera, laptop computer, and portable music system.

The export of antiques requires special certification from the Department of Archeology, National Archive Building, Ram Shah Path, Kathmandu. It is illegal to export objects over 100 years old, such as sacred images, paintings, manuscripts that are valued for culture and religious reasons. Visitors are advised not to purchase such items as they are Nepal's cultural heritage and belong here.

For more information on customs matters, contact the Chief Customs Administrator, TIA Customs Office (Phone: 4470110, 4472266).


Foreign Currency and Credit Cards
Payment in hotels, travel agencies, and airlines are made in foreign exchange. Credit cards like American Express, Master and Visa are widely accepted at major hotels, shops, and restaurants. Remember to keep your Foreign Exchange Encashment Receipt while making foreign exchange payments or transferring foreign currency into Nepalese rupees. The receipts may be needed to change left-over Nepalese Rupees into hard currency before leaving the country. However, only 10 percent of the total amount may be converted by the bank. ATM is widely in use in Kathmandu.

Major banks, hotels and exchange counters at Tribhuvan International Airport provide services for exchanging foreign currency.

Exchange rates are published in English dailies such as The Rising Nepal, The Kathmandu Post and The Himalayan Times. Nepalese Rupees are found in denominations of Rupees 1000, 500, 100, 50, 20, 10, 5, 2 and 1. Coins are found in denominations of Rupees 5, 2 and 1. One rupee equals 100 paisa.

Time and Business Hours
Nepal is five hours 45 minutes ahead of GMT.

Business hours within the Valley: Government offices are open from 10 am to 5 p.m. from Sunday through Thursday and close at 3pm on Friday in the Kathmandu Valley. During the winter, they close at 4 pm. Most Business offices are open from 10 am to 5 p.m. Sunday through Friday. Embassies and international organizations are open from 9 am to 5 pm Monday through Friday. Most shops open after 10 am and close at about 8 pm and are usually closed on Saturdays.

Business hours outside the Valley: Government offices outside Kathmandu valley open from 10 am to 5 p.m. from Sunday through Thursday. On Fridays they remain open until 3 pm. Banks are open from Sunday through Thursday from 10 am to 3 pm. On Fridays, banks remain open until 12 pm only. Business offices are open from 10 am to 5 pm Sunday through Friday. Recently many private banks have re-organized to have different branches open at various different times making banking hours longer. If one branch is closed another will be open.

Holidays: Nepal observes numerous holidays, at the least a couple in a month. So please check the holiday calendar. The longest holiday in Nepal is during the Dashain festival in late September or October. Government offices observe all the national holidays and banks observe most of them. Businesses observe major holidays only.


Communication Facilities

Postal Services: The Central Post Office located near Dharahara Tower, is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday through Friday. The counters are open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and provide stamps, postcards and aerograms. Post Restante is available Sunday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Express Mail Service (EMS) is available at GPO and at Thamel, Basantapur and airport postal counters.

Telephone Services: Telephone and fax services are available at the Nepal Telecommunications Corporation at Tripureshwar. Hotels and private communications centers provide long distance telephone and fax facilities. For calling from outside, country code for Nepal is 977 and the area code for Kathmandu is 1.

Internet Services: There are countless Internet cafes and communication centers have opened up in the Valley and around the country. Visitors only have to find a place they are most comfortable in to use the facilities to keep in touch with home. Internet services are also offered by hotels.

Media: Nepali media has made a gigantic leap ahead in just a few years time and what used to be a controlled and tight knit community, is no more. The government audio and television news networks are Radio Nepal and Nepal Television respectively. However, numerous FM radio stations and regional television stations are dominating the market. Major Nepali daily newspapers are Gorkhapatra and Kantipur, while the English dailies are The Rising Nepal, The Kathmandu Post and The Himalayan Times. A number of other newspapers and magazines are also available.

Electricity: Major towns have electricity and the voltage available is 220-volts and 50 cycles. Load shedding is a seasonal phenomenon during the dry season and eases off once it begins to rain. However, most major hotels have uninterrupted power supply through their own generators.

Everest Base Camp Trek

We fly to Lukla and begin trekking through the land of the legendary Sherpas into the Sagarmatha (Everest) national park.

Since the successful ascent of Everest the Khumbu region has enjoyed the international attention. We will follow the footsteps of Tenzing Norgay, Hillary, Bonnington and Messner. We follow the classic trail to Namche bazaar, Khumjung, Pangboche and Lobuche to the Everest Base Camp and go on to Kalapathar. From Tengboche to Pangboche (3,985m) the trail rises through meadows where graze yak. After touring the monastery we set out and cross the Lobuche Khola to arrive at Pheriche. After crossing the moraines of the Changri Shar Glacier, we reach the sandy plain of Gorakshep. Then we climb up amongst large boulders to the broad summit of Kalapathar (5,545m), which offers the best view of Everest and Khumbu Glacier

Whether it may be called Everest, Sagarmatha or Chomolungma, the highest peak of this planet is stunning to behold. The trek will end at Syangaboche or Lukla and fly out to Katmandu.

Trekking Itinerary

Day 01: Meet at Kathmandu Airport and transfer to hotel

Day 02: Sight-seeing of Kathmandu: Full day’s sightseeing in Kathmandu valley includes the Hindu temple complex at Pashupatinath (a UNESCO World Heritage Site) & the biggest Buddhist Stupa at Boudhanath. Also visit Monkey Temple the Swyambhunath (2000 years old temple) and visit Patan city of fine arts. Return to the hotel.

Day 03: Flight from KTM – Lukla. Trek to Phakding (2,652m).

Day 04: Phakding to Namche (3,440m)- Beginning with a slight climb to Jhorsalle, the trail passes a waterfall. All day, we pass villages interspersed with magnificent forest- rhododendron, magniolia trees and giant firs. And on the way to walking you will be rewarded (weather permitting) your first glimpse of Kusum Kanggru (6369m) Thamserku (6608m) Everest (8848m) and Nuptse (7879 m). A steep climb up to the beautiful village of Namche bazaar (3440m).

Day 05: Acclimatization day in Namche. Acclimatization is most important before proceeding to a higher elevation. It is therefore recommended that you take a short days hike to Thame, Khunde or Khumjung or relax and explore the sherpa culture of Namche.

Day 06: Namche to Tengboche (3,867m): after walking one hour you arrive in phungithanga from there the trail climbs through forests where you can spot musk deer. Tengboche sits on a saddle at 3870m in a clearing surrounded by dwarf fires and rododendroms. Kwongde (6187m) Tawache(6542m) Everest (8848m) Nuptse (7855m) Lhotse (8618m) Amadablam (6856m) Thamserku (6608m) provide and inspiring panorama of Himalayan giants. We visit the Bhuddist Monastry at Tengboche, the largest in Khumbu region.

Day 07: Tengboche to Pheriche: Beyond Tengboche the altitude really starts to tell. The trail droops down to Dingboche, crosses the Imja Khola and climbs past superb mani stones ( carved with the Tibetan Buddhist chant om mani padme hum) to Pangboche at 3860m The gompa here is worth visiting. Then the trail start climbs to Pheriche 4240m. Where there is a medical facility, which gives lectures everyday on Altitude Sickness.

Day 08: Another acclimatization day, again walking up and then coming back down is better than just resting in high altitude, you can make a day trip to Nangkartshang Gompa or up the hil to lok down onto Dingboche, Either walk offers good views.

Day 09: Pheriche to Lobuche - The trail climbs to Phalang karpo at 4340m then Duglha at 4620m,From Dughla the trail ascends the broad, gently slopping valley and climb steeply in to the terminal moraine of the Khumbu glacier then left in to the memorial area Chukpilhara, before reaching the Lobuche at 4930m

Day 10: Lobuche to Gorakshep. The trail from Lobuche follows the grassy ablation valley with great views of Pumori then crosses tributary glaciers to reach the dry lake bed of Gokrakchep. Stop for lunch then climb Kalapattar to get the best views of Everest and the surrounding mountains, then and back to Gorakshep for the evening.

Day 11: Gorekshep to Everest Base Camp back to Lobuche - Early morning we walk to Everest Base Camp , visit base camp area and work down to Lobuche.

Day 12: Lobuche to Dingboche - Staying the night at Dingboche, makes an interesting accommodation alternative.

Day 13: Tengboche

Day 14: Namche

Day 15: Lukla, hotel

Day 16: Flight from Lukla - KTM, transfer to hotel

Day 17: Kathmandu free day, evening culture show with nepali dinner, hotel

Day 18: Final departure, transfer to airport

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

A Short Introduction to Air Transport of Nepal

The air transport service in Nepal began with the establishment of Tribhuwan International Airport (TIA) in 1949, just two years before advent of democracy in the country. Since then more than 40 airports have been founded all over Nepal, though TIA is still the sole international airport here. As major portion of the road network of this recently declared federal republic is still in the primitive and insufficient state, air strips provide a comparatively safer and reliable, although bit expensive, mode of transportation. Those who can spend a little prefer short, cozy and secure journey to the whole-day long bumpy ride on poorly-maintained highways. The gateways to the chief tourist attractions in Nepal like Lukla, Johmsom , Dolpa, Pokhara had airdromes before they were linked into the road network. The remote tourist district of Solu Khumbu alone, which seats the Mount Everest, consists of 4 airports!

Nepal Airlines, formerly Royal Nepal Airlines, is the flag carrier of Nepal operating both national and international flights to Delhi, Quala Lampur, Dubai, Bangkok, Doha and Hong Kong. There are about 18 private companies which are granted the license to operate air services by the Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal. Due to the extensive air network and additional aircrafts from private companies, flights are operated in almost regular basis to the major parts of the country. These airlines also provide additional services like mountain flights and charters (both helicopter and airplane). The popular and preferred private airline services of the country are – Buddha Air, Yeti Airways, Simrik Air, Tara airlines etc.

Getting to Nepal from Europe, Australia and America requires two different flights since there is no direct air connection to these places from Nepal. Some of the popular international airlines in Nepal are: Air Arabia, Air Asia, Air China, Bahrain Air, Biman Bangladesh, China Southern Airlines, Druk Air, Etihad, Qatar Airways etc. The places in Asia to where the regular flights from Nepal are carried out are Bangkok, Seoul, Singapore, Hongkong, Kwala Lampur, Doha , Karachi, Dhaka, Guanghzhao (China), Paro (Bhutan) , New Delhi and few other cities. If you are flying from America or Canada, you may choose to travel either westward or eastward over the globe. From Europe, you need to make first stop at one of the Gulf airports from where regular flights to Kathmandu are operated. In case of Australia or New Zealand, the four options are Bangkok, Seoul, Singapore or Hong Kong.

TIA is not yet well-equipped and sophisticated like the big names in the international airports. However, basic airport facilities are available with additional services like money exchange, tourist information center, instant photo booth and also a communication stall from where you can buy SIM cards easily. Most domestic airports of Nepal are below standards, the aviation sector in Nepal has a long way to go and we can expect at least some decades to pass before a properly managed and well-facilitated airways service comes into effect in Nepal. Nevertheless, journey on air is still the first option for tourists as well as local passengers prioritizing time, safety ,comfort and aerial views of the Himalaya.