Annapurna Extension Trip Notes

Destinations:
Nepal
Programmes:
Trip Extensions
Trip Code:
XIN
Activity Rating - Moderate
Moderate

You are moderately fit and possess a spirit of adventure. Some previous experience is required for most activity based trips.

Ages: 16+

Trip Overview

This short 4 day trek is a perfect introduction to trekking in Nepal. The route takes us through the foothills of the Annapurna region, one of the most spectacular of Nepal's Himalayan massifs. We will also pass through Gurung villages set amongst the steeply terraced fields with splendid mountain vistas. 

This extension starts 2 days before the end of the main tour. At the end of the trek, you will then continue to Kathmandu and follow the rest of the main tour's itinerary.

 

At a Glance

  • 6 nights / 7 days land only (Pokhara and Kathmandu included as part of your main tour)
  • 3 nights teahouses; 3 nights hotels
  • Price - from £429
  • Compulsory single supplement from £90 (hotels only)
  • Compulsory single traveller supplement from £275

Trip Highlights

  • Traditional Nepalese villages
  • Magnificent views of Annapurna South

Is This Trip for You?

Activity Level: 3 (Moderate)

Most people who enjoy a weekend walking at home will enjoy a Moderate trip. You do need to be in good health and reasonably fit.  This trek stays uner 2000 meters throughout  so it is not a difficult trek.

This extension starts in Pokhara, 2 days before the main trip ends. This is Day 13 Land Only of the main trip, when the group travels from Pokhara to Kathmandu.  At the end of the trek, you will travel to Kathmandu and will follow the rest of the main tour itinerary.

This is a moderate trek with 4 days point-to-point walking. We walk 3‐5 hours each day and stay in local mountain lodges (known as teahouses).

Please note that while we provide a tour leader for the main trip, there is no Exodus leader on the extension detailed above. We will provide you with an English speaking Nepali guide and porters to carry your luggage.

Although fairly basic the lodges have twin bedded rooms, dining room and some kind of toilet and shower facility. We do not include lunch and dinner on trek, allowing you to eat what you want when you want; each teahouse has an extensive menu.

Your guide will meet you at your hotel in Pokhara on Day 13 (Day 14 ex London) of the main trip and brief you on the trek.

Adult min age:
16
Min group size:
1
Max group size:
16

Itinerary

Land Only

Start City:
Pokhara
End City:
Kathmandu

Land Only Itinerary

  • Day 1

    Drive to Khare; trek to Australian Camp

    We say goodbye to the rest of the group this morning as they drive to Kathmandu. We will set off with our guide and porter(s) and drive a short way (1hr) to Khare where we start our trek. From here it is pleasant gradual walk up through the forest to Australian Camp, where on a clear day we have a magnificent panorama of the Annapurna South and Machhapuchhare ‐ the sacred Fishtail Mountain. We arrive at the lodge by lunchtime and after lunch there is an optional bird watching walk.

    Teahouse

     

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
    Distance covered: 3 km / 2 miles
    Activity (hours):
    1.5
  • Day 2

    Trek to Landrung

    The trail continues to ascend through the forest past Potana and then we climb up to Deurali, where there are a few tea shops ‐ ideal for a tea break. We then descend quite steeply through the forest to Tolka, from where we enter farmland, and the trail then undulates around a few corners to the pretty Gurung village of Landrung (1,648m). We have plenty of time to explore the village; the people who live in this area come mostly from the Gurung tribe and the houses are made from a distinctive orange mud brick. Mainly subsistence farmers' crops are grown on every inch of land and the terraces extend for miles up and down the hills.

    Teahouse

     

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
    Distance covered: 7.5 km / 4.7 miles
    Activity (hours):
    3.5 - 4
  • Day 3

    Trek to Ghandrung

    Ahead are fine views of Annapurna South and Huinchuli and across the valley, we can see Ghandrung. To get there we must descend on a stone staircase to the Modi Khola River. Crossing the river by bridge we then have a long climb up through farms and hamlets to Ghandrung at 1,951m where we spend the night. Ghandrung is the largest Gurung village in the area and we have time this afternoon to explore the old part of the village, which is a maze of narrow alleyways separating the neat slate-roofed houses. From the lodge, we can watch the sunset on Annapurna South.

    Teahouse

     

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
    Distance covered: 4 km / 2.5 miles
    Activity (hours):
    4 - 5
  • Day 4

    Trek to Birethani; drive to Pokhara

    Today is an easier walk and mostly downhill. We follow the trail out of Ghandrung on a magnificent stone staircase all the way down to Birethanthi. Way below us the Modi Khola roars down the valley and above us the rocks and hills soar ever upward to the snowy peaks. We have lunch in Birethanthi and then take a local bus or taxi back to our hotel in Pokhara. We stay in a simple hotel near the lakeside.

    Standard Hotel

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
    Distance covered: 8.6 km / 5 miles
    Activity (hours):
    4 - 5
  • Day 5

    Tourist bus to Kathmandu

    This morning we take the tourist bus to Kathmandu, and our guide will travel with us. The distance is only 200km but it is a slow climb through the mountains and the journey will take most of the day (7‐8 hours). The views, however, are stunning as we follow the Marsyangdi and Trisuli rivers, passing numerous villages and terraces stretching thousands of feet up the hillside. We arrive in Kathmandu in the late afternoon and check into our centrally located hotel.

    Comfortable Hotel

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
  • Day 6

    Kathmandu sightseeing (as Day 16 of the main tour itinerary)

    As Day 16 of the main tour itinerary. 

    Comfortable Hotel

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
  • Day 7

    End Kathmandu (as Day 17 of the main tour itinerary)

    As Day 17 of the main tour itinerary

    Meals included:
    Breakfast

Accommodation

Teahouses & Hotels

3 nights teahouses; 3 nights hotels. On trek we stay in local mountain lodges (known as teahouses). In Pokhara, we stay in a simple hotel near the lake. We then move into a more comfortable hotel in Kathmandu.

Please note that a single supplement is not applicable for the teahouses on the trek (available only for the 3 hotel nights)

The teahouses are basic but adequate; please be realistic about what to expect in the mountains. We ask that you read our Nepal Destination Guide for further details about the lodge facilities. 

The hub of the teahouse is the dining room, usually decorated with colourful traditional rugs, sometimes with a stove or heater (some lodges charge a fee to put the heater on). All teahouses sell snacks and other essentials such as tissues, soap and toilet paper. Most lodges have electricity but it is not wholly reliable and lighting may not be bright enough to read by – a torch is essential. Electrical charging facilities are generally available only in the dining room (charged at approx. Rs150-350 per hour per device). Many lodges have Wi-Fi these days but it is generally slow and temperamental and often cannot cope with more than a couple of people logging into it at once.

The bedrooms are mostly twin-share but occasionally during peak seasons, you may be asked to share a dormitory room (3-5 people max) for the odd night. Beds with foam mattresses, bedsheets and a pillow are provided. Bedrooms are generally unheated and can get cold at night - please note we will provide you with a sleeping bag for the trek ‐ your guide will bring it to Pokhara.

Most lodges have only one or two basic toilets and sometimes these are located outside the main lodge building. Toilets are usually Asian ’squat’ style; although many lodges have now installed ‘western style’ seated ones. Toilet paper is not provided so you should bring your own or buy it locally (please dispose of it the bin provided – do not put it in the bowl). If there is not a flush handle, there should be a container of water to pour down – if it is empty (or frozen) please either refill it or ask the lodge to.

Some lodges now have gas or solar hot showers (charged at approx. Rs250-500 per shower) but don’t expect them every night. Sometimes a hot shower is simply a bucket of hot water and not a shower head.

Standards of cleanliness vary especially in the peak trekking season and in winter when the water freezes at night. Please report any problems to your leader or the lodge and be vigilant in your personal hygiene regime – use soap or hand sanitizer gel before and after toilet breaks, snacks and meal times.

 

Where a single supplement is available, paying for a single will only guarantee a room for single use. It does not necessarily mean a twin or double room will be provided for sole occupancy.

Please note that a member of the group may be allocated a single room by default if the make-up of the group means there isn’t anyone for them to share with. Paying the supplement in advance is the only way to guarantee a single room.

Single supplements cannot be refunded retrospectively.

Food & Transport

Eating & Drinking

Breakfasts are included. Please allow £10‐ £15 (approx. US$15‐25) per day for other meals and drinks in Kathmandu and Pokhara and on trek. We do not include lunch and dinner on trek, allowing you to eat what you want when you want; each teahouse has an extensive menu. 

Transportation

For the journey to Dhampus Phedi and from Birethanthi we use a
local taxi or bus. For the journey from Pokhara to Kathmandu we
use the tourist bus.

Weather & Seasonality

When to go

The main trekking season in Nepal is from October to mid‐May when daytime temperatures at most altitudes are generally comfortable for walking, the sky is clear much of the time and rain and snow are occasional occurrences. Daytime temperatures will vary from 15ºC to 35ºC. Different seasons offer different advantages for trekking.

Post Monsoon/Autumn: Mid September to November. This is the main trekking season in Nepal. Day temperatures will be up to 20ºC. Skies are usually clear and days on trek are sunny and mild with clear mountain views. Nights will be cooler with temperatures dropping to about 5ºC.

Winter: December to end February. Despite the cooler conditions
this is an ideal time to trek in Nepal. Skies are usually very clear
especially in December and the mountain views are at their best.
Early mornings and evenings are cold with temperatures down to about freezing but once the sun is out days are pleasant and sunny with temperatures up to 19ºC. The trails are much less busy at the time of year.

Pre‐monsoon: March to May. Both day and night temperatures will be warmer in general but haze will often build up in the afternoons and there can be some rain. The days will be hot (up
to 25ºC). Nights will be a bit cooler. Flowers bloom in this season
and this is one of the reasons people choose to trek in spring. The
Annapurna region is famous for its rhododendrons in spring.

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.

Weather Charts

Kathmandu

Joining Instructions

Full joining instructions including local emergency numbers will be sent to you as part of our Final Joining Instructions. If you do not receive these at least a week before departure, or require them earlier please contact our office or your travel agent.

Location start:
Pokhara
Location end:
Kathmandu

What to Take

Essential Equipment

Warm jacket

Leightweight trekking boots

Waterproof jacket and trousers

trainers/sandals for the evening

Sunhat

Sunglasses

Sunscreen

Warm hat and gloves (autumn/winter)

Walking socks

Tracksuit or thermals for the evening

Warm mid layer (fleece)

T-shirt/shirt/base layers

Lightweight trousers, shorts or skirt for women

Daypack

Towel

Head torch

Water bottle (2 litre)

Water purification product (eg. Biox Aqua)

Hand sanitizer

Plastic bags (or bin liner) to line daypack and for packing clothing in the kitbag

Biodegradable soap/shampoo

Toilet paper

Small personal firstaid kit

Please note we will provide you with a sleeping bag for the trek ‐
your guide will bring it to Pokhara.

You will be restricted to 12 kgs of luggage whilst on trek. You can
leave anything else in the hotel in Pokhara whilst trekking.

A soft kitbag is recommended for the trek. The porter will carry the kitbag and you only need to carry a small daypack with your
water, camera etc. Please note that many Nepalis are still
traditional in the way they dress. Out of respect for the country
we ask you to dress conservatively ‐ no sleeveless tops. Although
shorts are acceptable they should be modest and reach to just
above the knee and for women a skirt or trousers are preferable.

There are many equipment shops in Pokhara where you can buy
much of the above clothing. The quality does vary however and
you must chose carefully.

Optional Equipment

Trekking pole(s)

Practical Information

Passport

Nepal

All nationalities require a full passport that must be valid for 6 months beyond the intended length of stay. It is your responsibility to have the correct personal documents and to obtain your own visa, if one is necessary, in accordance with the regulations of the country you are to visit. The information below is primarily for UK passport holders, and other nationalities should check with their travel agent or the relevant embassies. We are not responsible for the actions of local immigration and customs officials, whether at points of entry or otherwise, and any subsequent effects.

Visa

Nepal

Most nationalities require a visa for Nepal, which can be obtained in advance or on entry (at present, the Immigration Department of Nepal have suspended  'visas on arrival' for certain nationalities - please check if this applies to you). All Nepal tourist visas are multiple entry. We recommend that you apply in advance as queues on arrival can be very long – applications can be made directly through the Nepal Embassy (by post or in person) or through our recommended visa agency, Travcour. The current cost for a visa in advance is GB£20 for a 15-day visa and GB£35 for a 30-day visa for UK passport holders (plus processing and postage fees if applying through Travcour).

The current cost for a visa on arrival is US$30 for 15 days, US$50 for 30 days, or US$125 for 90 days for UK passport holders. The fee can be paid for in any major currency at Tribhuvan International Airport in Kathmandu. On arrival in the immigration hall there are 3 queues (if you have obtained a visa in advance go straight to (3) - immigration):

(Step 1) Fill in a 'Tourist Visa' form: either online before travel (recommended) via the Department of Immigration website - print the submission receipt with barcode (valid for 15 days) and bring it with you, or use the electronic kiosk machines on arrival at the airport. If using the kiosks, after inserting your passport the machine will automatically fill out an application form, take an electronic photograph of you and print a paper slip. If the machine won’t read your passport you can complete the details manually using the touch screen. We recommend taking 1 passport photo with you just in case. (Step 2) Proceed to the visa fees collection counter and pay the visa fee (we advise to take some cash) – make sure to keep the receipt. (Step 3) Lastly, go to the relevant immigration desk and present your tourist visa form, payment receipt and passport to obtain your 15, 30 or 90-day visa stamp. Please check you have been given the correct visa duration.

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

Visa regulations can change without notice: please check the current regulations in good time to obtain a visa if one is required.

Vaccination

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. As of August 2019, there has been a recent outbreak of Dengue fever in southeast Nepal and we therefore recommend you take extra precautions to avoid mosquito bites (such as wearing full length trousers, long sleeves and applying insect repellent during the day as well as at dawn and dusk).

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.

Travel health can often be something people forget about before going away, but a little preparation and knowledge can go a long way to help you stay fit and healthy while abroad.

As we are not qualified to answer all your questions about travel health we strongly recommend you contact your Medical Professional or a Travel Health Clinic at least 8 weeks prior to departure for up-to-date information. Please note: vaccinations that are routinely recommended to residents of the UK, North America or Australasia are not considered to form part of the travel health advice, and you should ensure these are kept up to date where necessary.

For additional information please visit: https://travelhealthpro.org.uk/countries

Insurance - are you adequately covered?

It is a condition of joining any of our holidays that you must be fully insured against medical and personal accident risks (to include repatriation costs and air ambulance or helicopter rescue services where appropriate). On arrival in destination for your trip, you will be asked to present details to your leader or local representative of your policy.

If you are resident in the UK we strongly recommend the Exodus travel insurance policy, this is specifically designed to cover all activities on your trip. If arranging your own policy please ensure that you are covered for all activities that are part of the trip, optional activities that you intend to take part in and/or on high altitude itineraries, that you are covered up to the maximum altitude of the trip.

Local Time

Nepal's Timezone:
Asia/Kathmandu +0545 (GMT +05:45)

Electricity

Nepal's Electricity:

230V, 50Hz. Three different plug socket types are used in Nepal (types C, D and M) so it is advisable to bring a universal plug adaptor with you. On teahouse treks, almost all lodges now have electricity and charging facilities (usually for a fee) but power cuts are not uncommon. Battery life can be affected by cold - lithium batteries are best. 

Money

Nepal's Currency

The national currency of Nepal is the Nepalese Rupee (NPR), with an exchange rate at the time of publication of approximately 141 to the UK£ and 113 to the US$.

It is a closed currency, meaning it is illegal to import or export Nepalese Rupees so you won’t be able to get local currency outside of Nepal but foreign currency is not limited, provided it is declared on arrival.

Keep your change receipts, as you will need them if you want to change any leftover Rupees back into hard currency at Kathmandu airport before you depart. They may not always have all international currencies in stock but will generally have either GBP or EUR or USD.

Exodus Community

Join the Exodus online community

Don't forget to visit the Community area on our website. You can view the range of Exodus videos and podcasts, read trip write-ups which have featured in the national media and take advantage of some special deals on travel gear and equipment.

In the Community Travel Forum you'll find the Departure Lounge where you can discuss your trip with fellow travellers before you depart. When you get back from your holiday remember to upload your images to the relevant trip page on our website. This helps other people see what our holidays are really like and you'll be entered automatically into our monthly photo competition.

To make full use of the Community you'll need to join My Exodus. It's free, registration is simple and easy, so what are you waiting for?

Important Information

On all guided trips

Although our leaders are well trained to deal with different capabilities, if they have any concerns about someone’s ability to safely partake in an activity, or their impact on other people’s enjoyment, we authorise them to take necessary action which, in some circumstances, may involve asking someone to miss that activity.

Although rarely enforced, by booking this trip you agree to section 14 of our Booking Conditions which clearly states that our leaders have the authority to do this. In these circumstances we will ensure anyone sitting out is safely provided for and offered alternative options where possible. Refunds will not be provided for activities missed and customers may be liable for additional costs incurred.

On all trips

In booking this trip you should be confident in your ability to participate in all activities described in these Trip Notes. If you have any doubt about your suitability you should call the Exodus office and ask to speak to one of the experts on this itinerary.

 

Every time that you travel abroad you should take the time to read the warnings in the essential information in the brochure.

Full joining instructions including local emergency numbers, and details of how to reach the start point, will be sent to you approximately 2 to 3 weeks prior to departure. If you do not receive these at least a week before departure, or require them earlier please contact our office or your travel agent.

The information in these Trip Notes is given in good faith. Where differences exist between the Trip Notes and our current brochure or website, the Trip Notes supersede the brochure and website. All holidays can be subject to unexpected changes; in order to enjoy them you should be prepared to be flexible where necessary. Occasionally, as stated in our brochure, it may not be possible to follow the itinerary as planned. This may be for a variety of reasons - climatic, political, physical or other. In these circumstances we will make the best possible alternative arrangements that maintain the integrity of the original itinerary.

As fuel prices, airport taxes and exchange rates fluctuate, and airlines manage their rates to match demand, it is proving harder than ever to guarantee our Flight Inclusive prices. Although we endeavour to keep our website as accurate as possible, daily fluctuations mean that our Flight Inclusive price may be out of date. For accurate prices we recommend that you contact one of our Travel Experts, or your Travel Agent.

TRAVEL AWARE – STAY SAFE & HEALTHY ABROAD

 

The Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office and the NHS have up-to-date advice on staying safe and healthy abroad. For more on security, local laws, plus passport and visa information, see https://travelaware.campaign.gov.uk/

Keep informed of current travel health news by visiting https://travelhealthpro.org.uk/

Advice can change so check regularly for updates.

For all latest travel information about your holiday, please visit our Travel Safety Advice page.

How to Book

1. Check availability

Go online to check availability, or contact us by phone or email.

2. Secure your place

You can provisionally hold a place on this trip, usually for between three and seven days.

3. Complete your booking and payment

When you're ready to book, go to our website for online bookings, book over the phone or you can complete a booking form (available online or on request by calling us). We accept all major credit and debit cards, or you can pay be cheque. Book with confidence: Exodus is fully licensed and bonded as a tour operator. We hold Air Traffic Organisers Licence (ATOL) number 2582 issued and bonded with the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA). We are also bonded to the International Air Transport Association (IATA) and we are members of the Federation of Tour Operators (FTO) and ABTA ‐ The Travel Association. This means you can book your Exodus holiday with confidence, as all monies paid to us for your trip are fully protected.

TRIP NOTE VALIDITY

These Trip Notes are valid from the "Current as" date on page one. They will occasionally be updated post booking and pre-departure; if there are any updates that significantly impact the inclusions or itinerary bookers will be written to separately. All customers will also receive a link to the most up-to-date version of the Trip Notes with their Final Joining Instructions pre-travel.