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Nepal - Annapurna Trails and Chitwan

Wed, 11/12/2008 - 15:37

Just got back from this, it was was a great trip where we packed in a lot in a couple of weeks. Here are my tips:

  • Instead of shopping on the free afternoon on the first day, check out the Buddhist Swayambhunath Stupa (AKA monkey temple)  on a hill overlooking Kathmandu. Try and stay for sunset - amazing.
  • Make sure you get plenty of different denomination rupee notes before going on trek, otherwise getting change is a nightmare.
  • Take a decent water bottle and use boiled or tablet purified water instead of buying plastic bottles of mineral water. 
  • Trekking in late October is very hot during the day and dry. Take a wide brim hat and technical shirts which wick moisture. Don't bother with waterproof lined boots or trail shoes or your feet will be sweaty and uncomfortable.
  • Trekking poles with rubber tips were very useful, a lot of the trails were stone pavement where hard tips cause erosion and make a noisy racket.
  • I found a packable down jacket useful for cold evenings at altitude and hanging around on Poon Hill at dawn. However don't wear it or a waterproof jacket walking up Poon Hill or you will overheat even though it is cold.
  • Pack some swimming gear for jumping in the river at Birethani (cold but refreshing after a hot day's trekking) and for washing the elephants
  • You don't need to take a pillow, the lodges have them. Dry wash and toilet paper are needed though!
  • Take a mini tripod for close up zoom shots of the mountains. Also take some binoculars.
  • Shopping in Pokhara is cheaper than Kathmandu. If weather is clear try to get up to the Peace Temple there for a great view.
  • Bhaktapur is unmissable, long taxi ride through the crazy traffic but worth it.
  • The Garden of Dreams is a great secluded place for lunch in Kathmandu, just near the Royal Palace.
Wed, 04/22/2009 - 23:53

Hi Hope you can help me here!

I am thinking of booking this trip for October 09 and was wondering how challenging the treks are in real terms.  I am not fit, but fairly determined!  This trip goes to pretty much all the places I'd like to see.  Are the climbs, slow steady ones, and are you ok going at your own pace?

Would be really great to hear from someone who has actually done the trip, so hope you can help me out!

 Look forward to hearing from you,  Catherine

Thu, 04/23/2009 - 10:54

Hi,

Inevitably in the mountains there are some steep climbs and descents. However the walks each day are not too long. Also the altitude is not that high so you are not gasping for breath. Our trekking guide kept a steady, not a fast pace with plenty of stops for ginger tea (this area of Nepal is popular so there are lots of tea houses catering for hikers). Some people were faster than others but everybody got through it with no major problems. I think if you managed to do some regular aerobic excercise beforehand you would be fine.

Cheers

Jon

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