Nepal Family Adventure

15 days
from
£2,429
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Moderate
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Trip code: 
FIO
Ways to Travel:
Guided Group, Family Group, Tailormade Adventures
Activity:
New Family Holidays
Min age:
8
Group size:
4–16

Hands-on family holiday to experience the diversity of Nepal

Mighty mountains, pristine rivers and friendly people - Nepal is breathtaking, and a wonderful destination for families looking for an adventure. We explore the mediaeval towns of Bandipur and Bhaktapur, try our hand and cooking and pottery, as well visiting historic temples of Kathmandu. Naturally, the Himalaya themselves are one of the biggest draws here. On our exciting overnight lodge trek there are fantastic panoramas of the snow-capped Annapurnas, including the sacred ‘Fishtail Mountain’. To add a further dash of daring we take a rafting trip down the jungle-clad Seti River Gorge, ending the day around a campfire. From intrepid rafters we turn jungle explorers in the steamy Chitwan National Park, discovering the waterways by dugout canoe. A jeep safari in search of rhino offers wildlife enthusiasts of all ages to indulge their passion, making for an unforgettable week.

Highlights

  • Gentle overnight trek in the Annapurna foothills with fantastic mountain panoramas
  • Kathmandu city tour, including Monkey Temple and a cycle rickshaw ride
  • Hands-on family experiences including a cookery class and a pottery lesson
  • 1.5 days gentle rafting amidst pristine jungle on the Seti River - camp on the riverbank
  • Discover the mediaeval towns of Bandipur and Bhaktapur
  • Search for rhinoceros and crocodiles in Chitwan by jeep and dugout canoe
  • Take a boat across Pokhara's Lake Phewa and walk to the World Peace Pagoda

Key information

  • 9 nights hotels, 1 night teahouse/lodge, 2 nights jungle lodge and 1 night full-service camping
  • 13 days cultural experiences, visits and activities

  • Overnight trek with full porterage

  • Travel by private bus, 1 internal flight, boat and on foot
  • Low altitude throughout

What's included

  • All breakfasts, 3 lunches and 3 dinners included 
  • 9 nights hotels, 1 night teahouse/lodge, 2 nights jungle lodge and 1 night full-service camping
  • All transport and listed activities
  • Tour leader throughout, plus local staff
  • Flights from London (if booking incl. flights)
  • Arrival and departure transfers

What's not included

  • Travel insurance
  • Single accommodation (available on request)
  • Visas and vaccinations
Call for general departures:
020 8772 3936
Call for tailormade trips:
+44 (0)20 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Responsible Travel

At Exodus we believe in the power of Responsible Travel.

Exodus has a longstanding relationship with our local partner in Nepal, having worked with the family business, passed from father to son, for over 30 years. We employ local leaders, guides and staff throughout and work with family-run hotels, such as the Hotel Royal Singi wherever possible.

Exodus has set up and supported many projects in Nepal over the decades, from installing solar cookers and donating smokeless stoves (a safer means of cooking, which helps prevent eye and lung problems), to supporting a tree nursery in Braga (in the Annapurnas) and helping supply water and hydro-electric power to several villages.

Following the 2015 Nepal earthquake, Exodus’ emergency fundraising appeal raised over a quarter of a million pounds thanks to our loyal customers and friends. This enabled us to provide emergency relief (shelters, food and medical supplies), to rebuild homes and schools, and to run a medical camp in spring 2016 in the remote village of Thulopatel in partnership with volunteers from Nepal Medical College. Over 1,500 patients from rural communities were treated for a variety of ailments, to whom medical facilities are not normally readily available. Many of our previous projects (both water pipes and stoves) were damaged in the earthquake - in 2017 we started repairing and replacing these.

Exodus also worked with Health Partnership Nepal and sponsored their medical camp in Charikot in 2017 as well as sponsoring more than 400 Freedom Kits (providing sanitary wear) for women in Nepal – we will be continuing with this project in 2018.

To learn more about what Responsible Travel means to Exodus click here… 

Itinerary

London
to
London
  • Day 1

    Depart London.

    Th overnight group flights are scheduled to depart London this evening.

  • Day 2

    Arrive Kathmandu.

    The group flights are scheduled to arrive into Kathmandu in the mid-afternoon. You will be met at the airport and transferred to the hotel. Upon arrival at the hotel please look out for an Exodus noticeboard with details of where and when your group welcome briefing will be held this evening. 

    Hotel Royal Singi (or similar)

  • Day 3

    Sightseeing tour of Swayambhunath (Monkey Temple) and Kathmandu Durbar Square; take a cycle rickshaw ride to Thamel.

    First, we visit the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Swayambhunath (Monkey Temple), one of the most sacred among Newar Buddhist pilgrimage sites. It is often referred to by visitors as the monkey temple due to the monkeys that roam the grounds. The complex is made up of a stupa and a number of shrines and temples and is an exciting place to explore. We then continue to Kathmandu Durbar Square (which also has UNESCO status), one of three royal palace squares in the Kathmandu Valley.  Although the Kathmandu Durbar Square was heavily damaged in the 2015 earthquake the many palaces, temples and courtyards in the Newari style are interesting.

    Hotel Royal Singi (or similar)

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 4

    Drive to Bandipur and explore this traditional Mediaeval town.

    Leaving Kathmandu early to avoid the worst of the traffic, we drive to Bandipur, a beautifully preserved mediaeval town located on a ridge top. Newari style houses line the narrow streets and in the afternoon we'll have a tour of the town and surrounding area.

    Hotel Gaun Ghar (or similar)

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 5

    Continue to Pokhara; afternoon cooking class to learn to make momos (Nepalese dumplings).

    In the morning we drive to Pokhara, a pretty lakeside town situated in the shadow of the Annapurna Range. After lunch, we will have a cookery class and learn how to make traditional momos, from making the dough to preparing the filling. These are a type of Nepalese dumpling filled with minced meat or vegetables, usually steamed (sometimes fried). The class is run at the Tibetan Refugee Camp which is also interesting to see. 

    Mount Kailash Resort (or similar)

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 6

    Optional Sarankot sunrise excursion; Boat across Lake Phewa; walk to Raniban via the World Peace Pagoda for mountain views; return to Pokhara.

    The energetic may want to take an optional trip to Sarankot for sunrise this morning. After breakfast, we will take a short boat trip across the lake (approx half an hour). We then have quite a steep climb up to the World Peace Pagoda, set on a hill overlooking Lake Phewa. From here it’s a short walk to the Raniban Retreat, where we have lunch; there are fantastic views across the lake with the Annapurnas as a backdrop. we transfer back to Pokhara by road. 

    Mount Kailash Resort (or similar)

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 7

    Drive to Khare; short trek through forest to Australian Camp; afternoon bird-watching walk.

    This morning we drive out of Pokhara to Khare (1.5hrs), from where we walk through lush forests to Australian Camp. The walk takes us gradually uphill for about 2.5hrs. Australian Camp was originally a clearing in the forest with great mountain views where trekking groups used to camp. There are now several lodges in the clearing but the views are still as beautiful. On a clear day, we get magnificent views of Annapurna South, Huinchuli, Machhapuchhare (Fishtail Mountain) and Lamjung Himal. We should be at our basic but comfortable lodge by lunchtime and we can spend the afternoon either admiring the view or your leader will take you on a bird-watching walk. This day will give us a taste of trekking in Nepal. The rooms at the lodge are basic but have attached bathrooms, and there is a decent choice of food.

    Australian Camp (or similar)

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 8

    Walk through beautiful terraces to Dhampus with magnificent views of Macchapuchhare and the Annapurnas; return to Pokhara.

    On a clear morning, it is well worth getting up early for the spectacular sunrise. After a leisurely breakfast, we head to the neatly laid out terraces of Dhampus. It will take approximately 1.5hrs walking. This village is set on a ridge with magnificent views of the Annapurnas and Machhapuchhare, the 'Fishtail' mountain can be seen as it sits in the middle of the range and has a very distinctive shape. Considered holy this mountain cannot be climbed by anyone. From Dhampus we descend on a stone staircase trail to Dhampus Phedi (about 2hrs walking) where we meet the road and our bus. We drive back to Pokhara and the rest of the day is free.

    Mount Kailash Resort (or similar)

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 9

    Raft gentle rapids down the Seti River through isolated jungle; camp on the sandy river bank.

    We drive to the rafting start point at Damauli. There will be a short safety talk and you'll be given some instruction about rafting. You will be provided with life jackets and helmets before taking to the Seti River. The rapids are gentle (usually grade 3) and the scenery outstanding as we pass through a forested canyon. We may see some wildlife and birds along the way. There will be a stop for lunch and time for a swim or relax on the sandy bank before continuing downstream. The villagers often come to watch us navigate the rapids by Saran Ghat. This village is home to some colourful characters from the Gurung and Magar ethnic groups, especially those who once served as Gurkha soldiers. In the late afternoon, we set up camp on a long open beach below the village. 

    Full-Service Camping

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 10

    Morning rafting to Gaighat; drive to Chitwan; explore Tharu village on an ox-cart ride and witness a traditional dance performance.

    This morning we tackle slightly more technical rapids of Class III. Soon after the rapids, the Seti flows into the Trishuli River and after another twenty-minutes of floating down river from this confluence, we reach our exit point at Gaighat. Here we meet our transport and drive to our jungle lodge in Chitwan (approx. 1hr drive).

    Our naturalist guide from the lodge will tell us about the programme for the next 2 days. We then take an ox-cart ride around Tharu Village, where we witness a traditional Tharu dance. 

    Maruni Sanctuary Lodge / Green Mansions Resort (or similar)

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 11

    Explore the jungle on a bird-watching walk, take a dugout canoe ride down the Rapti River in search of crocodiles and try to spot rhinoceros on a jeep safari.

    The order of the programme of activities may change but will generally include an early morning birdwatching walk before breakfast. Before lunch, we normally go on a trip along the Rapti River in a dugout canoe looking for crocodile and again observing the many birds. Before dinner, we set out on a jeep safari. If we are lucky we may encounter the Indian one-horned rhinoceros or some of the several species of deer found here. The safari lodge has knowledgeable and helpful staff, who accompany us on all the excursions.

    Maruni Sanctuary Lodge / Green Mansions Resort (or similar)

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 12

    Dawn bird-watching walk; fly to Kathmandu; short transfer to Mediaeval Bhaktapur.

    For those who wish, there is a bird-watching walk early this morning. We then transfer to Bharatpur airport (approx. 50 mins drive) and catch a flight to Kathmandu from where we drive to Bhaktapur (approx, 1hr drive). 

    Hotel Heritage (or similar)

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 13

    Visit Bhaktapur Durbar Square and try your hand at making pottery at Potters Square.

    We spend this morning exploring this wonderful heritage town. Bhaktapur is the most mediaeval of the three ancient cities in the Kathmandu Valley. It is quieter than Kathmandu and its temples, although there was much destruction from the 2015 earthquake of the surrounding areas, the city centre survived fairly well. There are two Durbar (main) Squares with ancient pagoda style temples. We will explore the narrow streets and visit Potters Square for which the town is also famed, where we try our own hand at pottery-making. 

    Hotel Heritage (or similar)

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 14

    Return to Kathmandu.

    We drive back to Kathmandu this morning, leaving plenty of time for some last minute souvenir shopping or further exploration of the city. Within walking distance of the hotel is the Garden of Dreams, a peaceful respite from the hustle and bustle of the busy streets, or it is possible to visit the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Boudhanath to see the famous Buddhist stupa with its huge mandala; one of the largest spherical stupas in Nepal and indeed in the world. 

    Hotel Royal Singi (or similar)

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 15

    Fly to London.

    The tour ends after breakfast today. The group flight is a daytime flight departing in the morning. Those who have booked a flight inclusive package will be driven to the airport today. 

    Meals included: Breakfast
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Essential Info

Visas

Nepal

Most nationalities require a visa for Nepal, which can be obtained in advance or on entry. If you wish to apply before departure the current visa cost is £20 for a 15 day visa and £35 for a 30 day visa for UK passport holders. The current cost of a visa on arrival is US$25 for 15 days, US$40 for 30 days or if extending your stay $100 for 90 days. All are multiple entry. The visa on arrival fee can be paid for in cash in US Dollars, Pounds Sterling or Euros. You will also need a passport photo. Application forms are available in the immigration hall (or for electronic passports there are visa registration machines which, after inserting your passport, automatically fill out a form for you). You must firstly join the queue to pay the visa fee, and then go to the relevant immigration desk to obtain your 15, 30 or 90 day visa stamp. There can be long queues for visas on arrival.

Non UK nationals should check requirements with their nearest embassy (a few nationalities are not permitted visas on arrival).

Vaccinations

Nepal

There are no mandatory vaccination requirements. Recommended vaccinations are: Polio, Tetanus, Diphtheria, Typhoid, Hepatitis A.

There is low to no risk of malaria throughout Nepal and antimalarial tablets are not usually advised although may be considered for certain higher risk groups; you may wish to consult your GP or travel health clinic for further advice. The risk is highest in the low lying southern ‘terai’ districts bordering India.

A yellow fever certificate is only required if travelling from a country with risk of yellow fever transmission or for travellers having transited for more than 12 hours through a country with risk of transmission.

Dengue fever is a known risk in Nepal. It is a tropical viral disease spread by daytime biting mosquitoes. There is currently no vaccine or prophylaxis available for Dengue, and therefore the best form of prevention is to avoid being bitten. We recommend you take the usual precautions to avoid mosquito bites.

Most of our trips to Nepal go to high altitudes where there is a risk of being affected by Acute Mountain Sickness. Our itineraries are designed to enable everyone to acclimatise to these altitudes, but you should be aware that it is still possible for you to be affected. Please refer to the Altitude Warning within the Trip Notes for further advice on AMS.

Eating and Drinking

All breakfasts, 3 lunches and 3 dinners are included.

Kathmandu, Pokhara and Bhaktapur have a wealth of restaurants serving Nepali, Indian, Chinese and Continental food and most restaurants have mixed menu so there is choice for everyone. Dhal bhat is the staple diet in Nepal and comes in many different forms but generally comprises some curried lentil dhal and meat or vegetables, some rice, and a pickle/chutney. Another popular snack is momos; a type of Nepalese dumpling, fried or steamed, filled with meat or vegetables.

Weather

The most popular time to visit Nepal is from October to mid-May when daytime temperatures are generally comfortable, the sky is clear much of the time and rain is an occasional occurrence. Daytime temperatures will vary from 10ºC to 30ºC in the Kathmandu Valley. Different seasons have different weather patterns.

Post Monsoon/autumn: Mid-September to November. This is the main tourist season in Nepal. Day temperatures in Kathmandu and Pokhara are usually above 20ºC. Skies are usually clear and days are sunny and mild with clear mountain views. Nights will be cooler with temperatures dropping to 5ºC. Chitwan will be hot and sunny in the daytime and cooler in the evenings

Winter: December to end February. Despite the colder conditions this is an ideal time to visit Nepal. Skies are usually very clear especially in December and the mountain views are at their best. Mornings and evenings can be cold with mists hanging around till late morning, but then the day is usually warm. In Kathmandu maximum daytime temperatures are 15ºC. In Chitwan mornings and evenings can be cold and misty but once the sun is up the days are pleasant.

Pre-monsoon: March to May. Both day and night temperatures will be much hotter in general but haze will often build up in the afternoons and there can be some rain. It is hot in the lowlands and temperatures rise to 30ºC/ 35ºC. Flowers bloom in this season and this is one of the reasons people chose to trek in spring. Chitwan will be very hot in the daytime and mild in the evenings.

Please remember that in any mountain area the weather is never wholly predictable and you should be prepared and equipped to deal with any differences in weather beyond the conditions described above.

Is this trip for you?

This family holiday is graded 'Moderate' (Level 3) and involves some physical and interactive activities - perfect for active families who are looking for an authentic experience.

There is a gentle overnight trek in the Annapurna foothills, involving a short climb for approx. 2.5hrs and a daywalk to Raniban but these should be within reach of anyone who is reasonably fit and is suitable for children from 8 years and up. The lodge at Australian Camp is a traditional Nepalese teahouse and although all rooms have en suite bathrooms, facilities are basic. 

There is also a day and a half of river rafting where we spend the night camping on the riverbank. No previous experience is required for the rafting; the water is relatively gentle, typically grade II to III (occasionally IV) rapids. For much of it, you will float peacefully downstream. Safety instruction and equipment (life jackets and helmets) is provided and there will be a safety kayak.

For the cookery class - please let your leader know in advance if you or a member of your family have any allergies or if you are vegetarian. 

Call for general departures:
020 8772 3936
Call for tailormade trips:
+44 (0)20 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Accommodation

Hotels, lodges and Camping

9 nights hotels, 1 night teahouse/lodge, 2 nights jungle lodge and 1 night full-service camping.

The hotels usually used are listed within the itinerary but occasionally these may vary by departure date depending on availability. In Kathmandu, we usually use the Hotel Royal Singi, located within walking distance of the Thamel district. All rooms have en suite facilities and there is a restaurant, a bar and an outdoor courtyard. There is complimentary Wi-Fi in the hotel lobby and Wi-Fi codes are available from reception for the rooms. There is an Exodus desk in the hotel reception area and an Exodus representative will usually be available daily in the mornings and evenings.

We spend three nights in Pokhara where we usually use Mount Kailash Resort, which has a large outdoor swimming pool. In Bandipur and Bhaktapur the hotels are traditional in style. In Chitwan, we stay in a comfortable jungle lodge in twin-bedded huts with en suite bathrooms.

You will get a taste of trekkers accommodation as we sleep in a Nepalese teahouse (basic lodge), which although basic, has twin-share rooms with en suite bathrooms. 

During the rafting trip, we camp on a riverbank beside the Seti. A team of staff will set up the tents, cook and do all camping chores for you and there will be a campfire.

Should you wish to extend your stay in Nepal, we can book additional nights accommodation in Kathmandu either before or after the tour for you - please enquire at the time of booking.

A limited number of single supplements are available however please note that single rooms are not available at Australian Camp. Please enquire at the time of booking.  

Call for general departures:
020 8772 3936
Call for tailormade trips:
+44 (0)20 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Expert Blog Entries

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Dates & Prices

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An overview of flight options

Exodus is committed to making joining our tours as easy as possible, wherever you live. We generally only block book seats from London, but this certainly does not mean that you need to fly from there. Depending on the route and airlines available, there will usually be various options available for those who want to fly from their local airport.

This page aims to provide a useful overview of the options available to our clients. However, the best flight arrangements should be tailored to your personal requirements, so please contact our Sales team for expert advice.

 

What kind of options do I have ?

1. We can book for you: Flights from anywhere in the world - not via London  

Depending on the route, this may be direct or via an overseas hub like Amsterdam, the Middle East or elsewhere. On short haul routes there may be direct flights with low cost airlines, charter flights or scheduled airlines. Exodus can book most, but not all, of these for you. The most appropriate airline may be different to that which we use for the group flight from London, but many people now travel on different airlines and meet up with their fellow passengers at the destination.

Pros Cons
  • May be the most direct route
  • Often the extra fare compared to the London flight is minimal.
  • As you will be in the hands a single airline for your entire journey, the airline will be responsible for your bags and your connections.
  • You may not be able to join the group transfers. However, we can usually arrange private transfers, or book your flights to try and coincide with the group transfers. See notes on transfer arrangements below.

 

2. We can book for you: Connecting flights from your local airport to London

Exodus can book connecting flights to London so you can join the group flight there. Connecting times will be followed according to airline advice, or as requested by clients. There are two types of fares we can use for this option: a 'through-fare' or a 'published fare'.
 
a) A 'through-fare' is where you will be in the main airline's care throughout. You change planes, but your bags are checked all the way through to your final destination. 

b) A 'published fare' ticket is completely seperate from your onward ticket from London. It is usually cheaper than a through-fare but will need to be paid for and issued as soon as it is booked. This can be a problem if your tour has not yet reached minimum numbers. On 'published fares' neither airline is aware that you have connecting flights, so Exodus is responsible for timing your connection, not the airlines involved. The tickets are also usually non changeable and non refundable.

Pros Cons
  • Depending on the fare type, Exodus or the airline is responsible for flight connections.
  • Through fare tickets can be expensive.
  • On a published fare, tickets must be issued immediately; tickets on published fares can be very difficult to change if onward flight times change; bags are not checked though to your final destination.
  • Published fares are non-refundable.

 

3. Booking some or all of the flights yourself

You can also book connecting air travel yourself, either to London, or all the way to the start point. There may be certain airlines or routes we don't have access to, so this is always an option. However, if you make your own travel arrangements you become liable for any delays, cancellations or missed connections, and Exodus is not required to offer refunds if you have trouble reaching the start of your trip.

Pros Cons
  • You might find cheaper fares, or routes not available to Exodus.
  • You are responsible for any delays or missed connections, and the cost of the tour is not protected should you miss your flight be cancelled.

 

 Notes on transfer arrangements

Sometimes it is possible to travel on a different airline to the group flight from London. Where this is the case, we need to think about ensuring you meet up with the group with minimum extra cost and hassle.

  • On certain trips, it is easy to arrive on a different flight and still meet the group at the hotel with time in hand. We can usually arrange private transfers (at extra cost) or offer advice on taking a taxi to the start hotel.
  • On other trips (especially in Europe), the transfer meets the group flight and then travels some distance to the first night's accommodation. Where this is the case, our Sales team will try to arrange flights that arrive before (and depart after) the group. However, we do have to make it clear in your final documentation that if your flights are delayed, the transfer cannot wait for you. While Exodus or our local operators will do what we can to help you reach the start point of the tour, any additional costs must be paid by the client. 

 

Next steps? 

Call our Sales team on: 0203 733 0698

Email your query: [email protected]

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Call us on 020 8772 3936