Nepal is a landlocked country set between the plains of northern India and the high plateau of southern Tibet. Within the small area of Nepal there is the greatest range of altitude on earth, ranging from the Terai, only 100m above sea level, to the summit of Mount Everest at 8,848m. Often a visitor’s overriding goal is to see the mountains, but to exclude the people, flowers, birds and wildlife from the experience is to miss the essence of the country.
The capital and only major city in Nepal is Kathmandu, the ultimate travellers’ crossroads. A huge trekking station, its entire existence and infrastructure is due to the continued comings and goings of foreigners anxious to experience everything from a taste of Eastern culture to climbing the world’s highest mountain. Nepal is a culturally rich destination, colourful religious festivals occur virtually all year round and a Nepal expedition is almost certain to coincide with at least one.
Due to the mountainous terrain a Nepal school trip is very much a trekking-based option and would suit teams looking for a physical challenge. Although trekking in July and August will be during monsoon season when rainfall is unpredictable, views can still be spectacular.
NEPAL EXPEDITION HIGHLIGHTS
Here are just some of the incredible experiences you can choose from for your Nepal expedition:
Acclimatisation can be spent around the Kathmandu area before setting out on the trek. Boudhanath in Kathmandu is one of many holy Buddhist sites in Nepal. The stupa’s massive mandala also makes it one of the largest spherical stupas in Nepal. Although there are no short acclimatisation treks in Nepal, the main trek is arranged so that you can acclimatise slowly before gaining much altitude.
Work in a school or orphanage
Projects are based in a school or orphanage where you can immerse yourself in the children’s culture and learn about their day-to-day life and the villages they come from. Rise early to join in with the children at Shram Jyoti School’s exercise classes, which can include karate and boxing lessons, then work throughout the day alongside a hired local expert mixing and laying cement, bricklaying or cleaning and painting windows. In the afternoon you can interact and play football with the curious and cheerful local children.
Nepal Project Case Study –
Mother and Children’s Art Foundation (MCAF)
In 2009, we started working with the Mother and Children’s Art Foundation (MCAF), a non-profit charity organisation working with women and children in education, health and employment. Through MCAF, teams work at schools with children from underprivileged families. Your MCAF hosts, school staff and the students at your school are warm, welcoming and love interacting with our teams.
Last year, World Challenge sent 27 teams to 11 different project sites where teams helped build classrooms, create, dig and cement wall perimeters, install windows and doors, as well as design and paint classroom murals.
Nepal offers a range of treks from 2 to 18 days, all of which have a great blend of culture and breathtaking scenery; you’re bound to find a trek that suits your team’s time line and ability. With such varied landscapes, there are a number of fantastic possible trekking options to choose from for your expedition.
You trek for up to eight hours every day, navigating your own way along trails. In your day sack you carry all the food, water and clothing you need, plus any group kit that the Expedition Leader has asked you to bring, while the Nepali porters carry the rest of your kit. Each night you camp in the beautiful wilderness or you may choose to spend a night in a traditional local teahouse.
Rest & Relaxation
Explore Kathmandu, head out on safari or go white water rafting!
Teams may choose to spend time visiting the temples of Kathmandu, exploring Durbar Square, head south to Chitwan National Park, go white water river rafting or explore the lake shores of Pokhara.
White Water Rafting
Our experienced white water rafting provider collects and takes you to the Trusili River, where you will find some of the world’s best rapids, warm water and bug-free beaches and can choose to camp overnight on the banks of the river. All this offers a wealth of opportunities for a great river rafting adventure.
Chitwan National Park
Take your pick! Whether you’re on safari in the back of a jeep or cruising down the river in a canoe, keep your eyes peeled for glimpses of Chitwan’s 43 species of mammals, including the Bengal tiger and the one-horned rhino!
- Nepal, Central Asia.
- Population: 29.9 million.
- Languages spoken: Nepali (For tourism purposes many locals also speak basic English).
- Time zone: GMT +5.45
- Terrain: Mountain and altitude.
- When can I travel there?: All year around, with seasonal restrictions on some treks.
- Climate: Nepal has a typical monsoonal, two-season year. The dry season runs from Oct-May and the monsoon season from Jun-Sep. Spring (Mar-May) and summer (Jun-Aug) temperatures range from 28ºC in the hill regions to more than 35°C in the southern plains. In winter (Dec-Feb) average temperatures from a brisk 5°C to a mild 20°C. Much colder temperatures prevail at higher elevations.
- Expedition Physical Rating: Moderate to high.
- Expedition Duration: 21 to 28 days.
- Culture Shock: High.
- Typical accommodation: Tents, hostels and occasionally tea houses.
- Ideal for: A trekking based expedition for teams looking for a physical challenge.
- Nepal is the birthplace of the Buddha and is one of the few countries that has never been colonised.
- The Nepalese are incredibly welcoming and will often invite you to join them for meals with their families – a great way to get immersed in the culture!
- Nepali is the language of Nepal.
- The word ‘Himalaya’ means the home or abode of snow.
Andrew Kumai, along with the team at Summit Nepal Trekking, have been working with World Challenge for over 10 years. You are likely to meet Andrew for an in-country briefing on your first few days in Kathmandu, so ask as many questions as you can as he is a fountain of knowledge!
NEW TO WORLD CHALLENGE?
Every World Challenge starts long before your students step on a plane. With our support, develop life skills and take ownership of:
- Destination and itinerary planning
- Fundraising ideas and events
- Budgeting and money management
- Preparation, fitness and nutrition
Get in touch with one of our consultants to start planning your overseas school expedition today!