Langtang Region

Langtang, the scenic Himalayan Region of Nepal bordering Tibet is one of the nearest trekking region from the capital, Kathmandu. Offering multiple adventure opportunities to trekkers and climbing enthusiasts, Langtang is one of the most loved trekking destination of Nepal.

Gateway to numerous Himalayan Peaks, Langtang showcases some of the most peaceful landscapes and alpine forests with the lifestyle, culture and celebration of Locals adding color to the land gifted by the nature.

langtang trekking langtang ri

Langtang Ri, a mountain in the Langtang Himal at an elevation of 7,205 m (23,638 ft) is the 106th highest mountain in the world.


Langtang was one of the most affected region by the devastating April 2015 earthquake. However the regions is now safe and once again open for visitors.


Trekking Trails

Langtang Valley Trek

Langtang Valley Trekking is probably one of the best treks to witness the authentic Tibetan culture because of its close proximity with Tibet. At the meantime the trek also highlights the 360 degree view of Himalayas from sacred Kyanjin Gompa. Since the region does not hold any 8000er the Himalayas in the Langtang Region is dominated by Majestic 7000er Langtang Lirung. [Detail Itinerary]

This trekking route is considered as a classical easy, relatively short trek for moderately fit persons.

The shortest approach to the Himalayas that caters abundance of authentic Tibetan culture 360 degree view of Himalayas dominated by Langtang Lirung and alpine floral and faunal species in the conserved Langtang National Park.”

Langtang Gosaikunda Trek

Langtang Gosainkunda Trek is one of the least frequented trekking routes of Langtang Region. The trekking along this trail is adventurously hilarious and at the meantime has huge religious significance as it arrives at one of the sacred lakes for Hindus Gosain Kunda. Langtang Gosainkunda Trek with is an exceptional trek to the Himalayas and the Himalayan hamlets, which cater wonderful rewards of nature and culture of the beautiful Langtang Region.

“Langtang Gosainkunda Trek- Striking alpine beauty blended with mid-hill delights, thriving Tibetan culture mixed with Hindu religious values and the lush vegetation dominated by colorful floras and faunas, the trek has it all.”


When To Go!!

Nepal basically have two trekking season Autumn (September – November) and Spring  (March – May).

  • Autumn: Excellent weather, Moderate Temperature, Clear Sky with outstanding views
  • Spring:  Mildly warm at lower elevations and quite moderate temperature at higher elevation, spectacular and excellent mountains View.

How Much Does It Cost!!

  1. TIMS (Trekkers Information Management System) card: USD$ 10 per Person (USD$ 15 per Person if Travelling Solo)
  2. Langtang National Park Entry Fee: USD$ 35 per Person

What To Take !!

  • Backpack to carry gears/ trekking equipment, clothes.
  • Daypack to carry your equipments for the day.
  • Good pair of light trekking shoes/boots.
  • Water and windproof outer shell jacket and pants.
  • Sleeping bag
  • First aid kit.
  • Water purifiers.
  • Sunscreen and sun hat.

Langtang Region is the third most visited trekking destination of Nepal after Everest and Annapurna.


Langtang A Year After the Earthquake

Killing almost 8000 and injuring more than 21000, the April earthquake was one of the most devastating earthquke in the history of Nepal. With most of the trekking destination surviving, the story was different for Langtang. Killing almost 300 alone, Langtang was one of the most affected tourist destination.

Langtang valley trek

Langtang Valley, the ultimate destination for trekking lovers from across the world.

However, the story is different after a year in langtang, the reconstruction work has gone accordingly as planned.

  • The disrupted routes are reopened with some re-routeing and currently almost 10 tourist (both domestic and international) visit langtang on daily basis.
  • Many Hotels and Tea House have come into operation. Sindhum and Kyanjin operates 35 hotels alone.
  • On the first anniversary of the earthquake, survivors and closed ones of the victims, treked from trekked to Langtang from Syafrubensi to pay tribute to their beloved.
  • Over 150 community members have returned to rebuild.

With new community and village slowly coming up, Langtang is ready for trekkers and backpackers. Breathtaking valleys, Stunning Himalayan vistas and Lush pine forest still make Langtang a popular destination for trekkers.


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In Pictures Annapurna Circuit

The most popular trekking trail in Nepal that stretches almost 100 miles beginning from tropical zone to elevated highland Thorung La Pass, Annapurna Circuit caters widely diverse cultural and natural aspects.

Here are some fascinating pictures of breathtaking landscapes  around Annapurna Circuit that takes you to the most enthralling trails the Himalayas of Nepal have to offer.

Around Annapurna Circuit.

Around Annapurna Circuit, walking through lush green forests , majestic mountains & miles of snow.


Mount Dhaulagiri seen from chiltre

Dazzling, White & Beautiful Dhaulagiri mountain seen from Chiltre.


Ice lake and annapurna II

Kicho Tal (Ice lake) with Annapurna II in the background.


Mt nilgiri

Mt. Nilgiri seen from Jomsom.


Manang annapurna

Annapurna III seen from Manang.


Lake Tilicho

Lake Tilicho, a popular side hike of Annapurna Circuit.


thorong la pass annapurna circuit

Way to Thorong La, a mountain pass with an elevation of 5,416 metres.


marpha annapurna circuit

Pretty stone lined village of Marpha.


braga annapurna circuit

Braga, around annapurna.


Jharkot valley around annapurna

Jharkot Valley, gateway to Manang.


mount manaslu

Mount Manaslu seen from Danakyu.


view from poon hill annapurna circuit

Mount Dhaulagiri seen from Poon Hill.


During the Annapurna Circuit trek, you walk with through a blend of exquisite culture, typical Nepalese village lifestyle, unbelievably challenging yet mesmerizingly beautiful landscape and above all pristine Himalayas.


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Country Profile: Bhutan

A landlocked country in south asia in the eastern end of the himalayas, Bhutan is known for its century old monastery and fortress with beautiful landscapes from breathtaking high mountains to lush green sub tropical plains.

Almost cut off for centuries, tourism in bhutan began in 1974  to promote the country’s unique culture and traditions to the outside world. Largely unexplored by the foreign tourist bhutan has no shortage of attractive tourist destination and is claimed to be the one of the beautiful country of the world.

Getting In

All tourists must obtain a visa before arriving in Bhutan (except nationals of India, Bangladesh and Maldives). Visas are issued on receipt of full payment of your holiday by the Tourism Council of Bhutan.

The total cost for a Bhutanese visa would be generally about 250 USD per day which includes accommodations, transportation, meals, plenty of bottled water and special entry fees.

The daily tariff covers:

  • A minimum of 3 star accommodation – Luxury hotels may incur an additional fee
  • All meals – Breakfast, lunch, dinner
  • A licensed Bhutanese Tour Guide for the extent of the stay
  • All internal transport – excluding any internal flights
  • Camping equipment and haulage for trekking tours
  • All internal taxes and charges
  • A royalty of $65 (which is included in the tariff price)

paro airport bhutan

Paro International Airport, the sole international airport in Bhutan.

Paro International Airport is the only entry point to Bhutan by air. It is located 6 km  from Paro on the bank of the river Paro Chhu.

Note: Make a pre arrangement with an approved tour operator, either directly or through an overseas agent as Foreigners are restricted to travel by themselves in Bhutan.

Climate

Geographically a small country, Bhutan’s climate varies from north to south.

  • North of Bhutan which borders with Tibet is covered in snow throughout the year.
  • Western, Central and Eastern Bhutan has an European-like weather, Winter lasts here from November to March.
  • Southern Bhutan bordering with India is hot and humid with a sub-tropical climate.

Due to its pristine environment and harmonious society, the tiny Kingdom of Bhutan has been called “The Last Shangri La.”


The most important centres for tourism are in Bhutan’s capital Thimphu, and in the western city of Paro. The majority of tourists do “cultural tours” in Bhutan, however  if you are adventurous and want to explore the unexplored then east Bhutan is the perfect place for you.

Monasteries

Paro Taktsang “Tiger’s Nest”

Paro taktsang bhutan tour

Paro Taktsang a famous Himalayan Buddhist sacred site and temple complex, located in the cliffside of the upper Paro valley, in Bhutan.

The temple is built on a 1,200 meter cliff and the hike up to the Tiger’s Nest can be very strenuous. Renting a horse is recommended if you are not very fit and may face altitude sickness. The ride is a one way trip and you have to make your way down on foot.

Gangteng Monastery

Gangte Monastery bhutan tour

The Gangteng Monastery is an important monastery of Nyingmapa school of Buddhism, located in the Wangdue Phodrang District in central Bhutan.

Dechen Phodrang Monastery

Dechen Phodrang bhutan tour

Dechen Phodrang meaning “Palace of Great Bliss” is a Buddhist monastery in Thimphu, Bhutan. It is located to the north of the city. The monastery contains a number of important historical Bhutanese artifacts including 12th century paintings.

Kyichu Lhakhang Monastery

Kyichu Lhakhang bhutan tour

Kyichu Lhakhang,  is an important Himalayan Buddhist temple situated in Lango Gewog of Paro District in Bhutan. The Jowo Temple of Kyichu is one of the oldest temples in Bhutan, originally built in the 7th century.

Dzongs/Fortresses

Perched high in the Himalayas, it is the world’s last remaining Buddhist Kingdom.


Trekking in bhutan is extremely popular and can be one of the best ways to experience the exotic mountains and landscapes.. The autumn and spring are the best seasons for undertaking a trek. In the summer, the paths are too muddy, while in winter they are snow covered. The recommended season for this trek is mid-June to mid-October.

  • The Druk Path is the most commonly treked in Bhutan from Paro, to the capital Thimphu.
  •  The Jomolhari, and Laya Gasa trek are the very popular trek in Bhutan.
  • The Snowman Trek is reported to be one of the toughest treks in the world, taking a approximately 30 days.
Gangkhar puensum trekking in bhutan

The highest mountain in Bhutan and a strong candidate for the highest unclimbed mountain in the world with an elevation of 7,570 metres.

Here are some tips what you need to pack during your trek to Bhutan.

  • Choose lightweight quick-dry clothing.
  • Carry light and small Thermal underclothes due to cold in the mountains even in summer.
  • Instead of carrying your documents such as boarding passes and other documents you can store it in your smartphones or other electronic devices.

Read : Basic Guideline for Trekking in Bhutan.


Beside culture tours and trekking, Bhutan has much more to offer. Here are some interesting activities you can be a part of during your stay in Bhutan.

  • Archery : This is the national sport of Bhutan and competitions are held throughout the country at most weekends.
  • Biking : Biking is easily the most sociable way to and experience Bhutan.
  • Festivals : Tshechu is the largest religious festival in Bhutan and is celebrated in the late Summer and Fall throughout the country. The highlight of the tshechu ceremonies is the masked dances by monks, which were developed according to precise instructions given by past Buddhist masters.
  • Hot Stone Bath : The hot stone bath is a ritual in itself, riverside rocks are heated till red hot and gradually dropped into a wooden tub filled with water and scattered with Artemisia leaves.
  • Ceremonial Buddhist Weddings : Bhutanese wedding is profound experience and commemorates the celestial union of mind, body and soul of two people.
Things to Keep in Mind
  • Shorts are not allowed (except trekking/hiking). Shoulders and legs should be covered all the time or else you will be restricted from entering into religious buildings and monastery. (applies for both men & women)
  • The sale of tobacco products is banned and smoking in public areas is an offence punished with fines.
  • All personal videos, cameras, personal computers, portable telephones or any other electronic device should be registered with the customs authorities on arrival in Bhutan, and will be checked again on departure.
  • Always pass mani stones, stupas and other religious objects with your right side nearest to the object, and turn prayer wheels in a clockwise direction. Never sit on mani stones or stupas.

The Land of Thunder Dragon, Bhutan is a trekker’s paradise and an environmentalist’s dream.


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A Basic Guide to Annapurna Base Camp Trek

The most spectacular trekking trail of the world

One of the most popular trekking trails in Nepal, Annapurna Base Camp Trek, caters the incredible taste of Trekking in the Himalayas.

This high glacial basin, Annapurna Base Camp is located directly north to Pokhara. Surrounded by a ring of mountains, Machapuchhare,  Annapurna I and Hiunchuli respectively, this oval shaped plateau seats at an altitude of over 4,130 m (13,549 ft).

Annapurna base camp trek

Panoramic view of Annapurna Sanctuary

The magical landscape in and around the Annapurna Base Camp is also called “sanctuary” because of its natural serenity, beauty and the divine presence of the Hindu goddesses Annapurna (8,091m) and Gangapurna (7,455m).

The trekking adventure to Annapurna Base Camp starts from Nayapul which is two hour’s drive from Pokhara. Then lead to the Machhapuchhre Base Camp through Ghandruk and Chhomrong. From there it head towards the Annapurna Base Camp and the ideal trek to the foothill of majestic Annapurna concludes by arriving to Jhinu Danda through Dovan.

Itinerary

Day 1 : Drive to Nayapul & trek to Tikhedhunga

Day 2 : Trek from Tikhedhunga to Ghorepani

Day 3 : Early morning hike to Poon Hill & trek to Tadapani

Day 4 : Trek from Tadapani to Chomrong

Day 5 : Trek from Chomrong to Himalaya Hotel

Day 6 : Trek from Himalayan Hotel to ABC via MBC

Day 7 : Trek to Bamboo

Day 8 : Trek from Bamboo to Jhinu Danda

Day 9 : Trek  from Jhinu Danda to Tolka

Day 10 : Trek  from Tolka to Phedi and drive to Pokhara


Most of the trail you walk (or any trekking trail of Annapurna Region) is through the protected region of Annapurna Conservation Area Project (ACAP).

[Note: ABC & MBC stands for Annapurna Base Camp & Machapuchare Base Camp]

Annapurna Base Camp trekking

Most of the trail in ABC trek is in the protected region of Annapurna Conservation Area.

The Annapurna Conservation Area is Nepal’s largest protected area covering 7,629 km2 (2,946 sq mi) in the Annapurna range of the Himalayas.

When To Go

March to May (spring) and September to December (autumn) are the best months to trek to Annapurna Base Camp. The days will be warm and nights will be usually cold with cool breezes. Those of you who are willing to fight the cold can also do the Annapurna Base Camp Trek in the months of January and February.

Cost and Permits

One must be registered in TIMS (Trekker’s Information Management System) before starting the trek. As mentioned, most of the trekking trail to ABC is inside the protected area of Annapurna Conservation Area. Fees for entering the conservation areas are as follows:

  • For SAARC Nationals Nepali Rupees 200. (Approx. US $2 per person)
  • For other Nationals (other than SAARC countries) Nepal Rupees 2,000.(Approx. US $200 per person)

Entry Permits available at the following locations:

  • Kathmandu: Karmachari Sanchaya Kosh Building, Tridevi Marg, Thamel, Kathmandu.
  • Pokhara: Nepal Tourism Board, Tourist Service Centre, Pardi Damside.

Mostly, TIMS will be registered by your trek company after you arrive in Nepal.

Note: Entrance fee not required for children under 10 years of age and two passport size photographs are required while applying for each Entry Permit.


The highlight of the trek is not only the majestic beauty of the Himalayan scenery but also the rich cultural experience of the Gurung villages and their inhabitants that you meet along the way.

Majestic scenery and a mix of cultures unmatched by any other treks in Nepal.

Not an entirely difficult trek, Annapurna Base Camp trekking is an unique experience for adventurers, beginners and experts alike.


Planning to trek Annapurna Base Camp! Remember the maximum altitude you will ascend during trek will be 4,130m. So, you need to be fully prepared for the harsh conditions.

Annapurna Base Camp trekking

The maximum altitude you will ascend during trek will be 4,130m.

Have an idea of AMS (Acute Motion Sickness) or also referred as Altitude Sickness. Headache, nausea, loss of appetite, shortness of breath, difficulty in sleeping and lack of energy are the symptoms of AMS.

The altitude sickness mostly occurs above 2,400 metres (8,000 feet) and most people can ascend to 2,400 metres (8,000 ft) without difficulty.

It is advice to not to continue (ascend) if you have any symptoms of AMS. It is better you move to lower altitude as soon as possible.

As you are constantly walking/trekking (4 to 5 hrs a day) the secret is to pack lightly as possible. Here is some gears and equipment you need to pack during your trek to Annapurna Base Camp.

Gears & Equipment
  • Hiking boots (long lasting boots) make sure you break them well before arriving in Nepal. One could spend up to 5 to 6 hours a day on the trail.
  • Soft and light shoes (Rubber shoes/sandals/sneakers) carry a lightweight shoes for after the day hike.
  • Sunglasses (geniuses UV protected) the sun rays are particularly strong the higher you go.
  • Lightweight sleeping bag, essential during peak seasons (October-December). Lodges do offer blankets, but are scarce during the peak season, therefore carrying a sleeping bag (-10 C°) can be a great precaution.
  • First aid kit containing paracetamol, burn cream, bandaids , antiseptic cream, water purification.
  • Other/Optional Extras : Trekking poles (for rough terrain), Wallet (bring lots of small changes), Trekking bars (energy bars), Gloves (windproof).

This Annapurna Base Camp enables you to enjoy the best of what the Annapurna Region has to offer making it the perfect go to adventurous holiday in Nepal for those with limited time to spend.


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Upper Mustang Trek Guide

Upper Mustang a demilitarized area until 1992 is now the most popular and charming destination of Nepal. Nestling in the rain shadow of the dazzling, white and beautiful Dhaulagiri Mountain, the forbidden kingdom Upper Mustang is an ancient capital of Lopas “People of Lo or Mustang”. If you are one of those, who craves from wilderness and exploration, then trekking to the lost kingdom is a must do!!

Mustang (upper) an ancient former Himalayan Kingdom lays in the northern central part of Nepal which is a remote isolated region of the Nepalese Himalayas with a touch of mystery and seclusion.

Upper Mustang Trek

Upper Mustang one of the most popular and seen as a charming destination in Nepal.

The trek begins from Kagbeni “gateway to upper mustang” after two hour walk from Jomsom, the windiest village of Nepal. The major attractions of Upper Mustang Trek are the prehistoric Tibetan village, rare medieval Buddhist arts, and the exotic Tibetan “Buddhist” culture, architectures (high city walls and the cliff hanging Caves), the high Himalayan dessert with colorful stratified rock formations.

Not to forget, the trek provides an opportunity to view the breathtaking panoramic view of some of the magnificent Himalayas Annapurna, Gangapurna, Machhapuchhre, Dhaulagiri and some other trailing mountain peaks.

Trek Season

Upper mustang has a trans himalayan climate and lies in the rain shadow area of the Annapurna and Dhaulagiri range. Pre-Monsoon (March-June) and Post-Monsoon (September-November) are the best season to trek in the Northern side of Nepal. The remote region can be accessed throughout the year even in the disquieting monsoon season.

Cost & Permit

Entering into the foothills of himalayan giant needs a special permit, costing $50 per day per person (foreigner), $500 for 10 days. Even though with a heavy permit fee, every penny paid for the restricted region ,Upper Mustang, guarantees its value, lifetime Himalayan and cultural experiences.

 Tiji festival in Lo-Manthang

Mustang a Tibet Autonomous Region of the Nepal is rich in Buddhist culture. The Tiji Festival,3 days ritual every May,in Lo-Manthang is an alternate way to experience the Tibetan native culture and landscape.

tiji festival

Tiji festival, a 3 days ritual celebrated in Lo Manthang, Upper Mustang evey May.

Lo-Manthang, the walled capital city of Upper Mustang is noted for its tall white washed mud brick walls, gompas and King’s Palace, a nine-cornered, five story structure built around 1400.

Itinerary

Day 1 : Drive to Pokhara.

Day 2 : Fly to Jomsom and trek to Kagbeni

Day 3 : Trek to Chele [6-7] hours trek

Day 4  : Trek to Geling [6-6.5] hours trek

Day 5 : Trek to Charang [6-7] hours trek

Day 6 : Trek to Lo-Manthang [5-6] hours trek

Day 7 : Acclimatization and Exploration day on Lo Manthang

Day 8 : Trek to Ghami [4-6] hours trek

Day 9 : Trek to Samar [5-6] hours trek

Day 10 : Trek to Kagbeni [5-6] hours trek

Day 11 : Trek to Jomsom [3-4] hours trek

 Day 12 : Fly to Pokhara

Equipment and Gears
  • Hiking boots (long lasting boots) make sure you break them well before arriving in Nepal. One could spend up to 5 to 6 hours a day on the trail.
  • Soft and light shoes (Rubber shoes/sandals/sneakers) carry a lightweight shoes for after the day hike.
  • Sunglasses (geniuses UV protected) the sun rays are particularly strong the higher you go.
  • Lightweight sleeping bag, essential during peak seasons (October-December). Lodges do offer blankets, but are scarce during the peak season, therefore carrying a sleeping bag (-10 C°) can be a great precaution.
  • First aid kit containing paracetamol, burn cream, bandaids , antiseptic cream, water purification.
  • Other/Optional Extras : Trekking poles (for rough terrain), Wallet (bring lots of small changes), Trekking bars (energy bars), Gloves (windproof).
Gallery

The interesting charms of this Upper Mustang Trek.


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Annapurna the Incredible Trekking Region

“Home to some of the  world class trekking routes.”

The north west part of Nepal, Annapurna Region is one of the most visited region and is considered Heaven by many ongoing travellers & nature lovers. Ranging from sodden bamboo forests to windswept desert, this mostly isolated landscape is home to some of the oldest buddhist communities & dramatic high mountains(including the 10th highest mountain).

The Famous city Pokhara is the gateway to Annapurna Region. Either take 6 to 7 hours bus ride or a 30 min flight for kathmandu, Pokhara welcomes you with its beautiful lakes and towering mountains.

Trek in the annapurna region all starts and end in pokhara.

Talking about the climate, being a high altitude region Annapurna Region is very cold in winter with snowfall and low in temperature. Nothing much changes in summer, the days are cooler (warmer) in comparison to winter but night can get cold and chilly.

As mentioned earlier the Annapurna region is home to several world-class treks & one of the  most desired trekking destinations in the world. Let’s start with two of the most popular and most visited trekking destination of this region, Annapurna Circuit & Annapurna Base Camp.

Annapurna Circuit 

Annapurna Circuit is considered one of the best trek in the world. The trek around the Annapurna massif is all about Nepalese village lifestyle, unbelievably challenging yet mesmerizingly beautiful landscape and above all pristine Himalayas. Annapurna circuit trek takes you to four different regions,  Lamjung and Myagdi which are of the lower elevations whereas Manang and Mustang are of the higher elevations.

This 100 miles trek passes from the world’s deepest gorge between two 8,000-plus meter peaks to 5416 meters elevated highland  Thorung La Pass.

Popular side Hikes

Tilicho lake, annapurna region

Tilicho Lake

One of the most popular side hike destination of the Annapurna Circuit, Tilicho Lake is situated at an altitude of 4,919 metres (16,138 ft) in Manang district. It is said to be one of the highest lake in the world and takes additional 2 to 3 days hike from Manang.

Naar phu valley, Annapurna Region

Naar Phu Valley

Opened to foreigners in 2002, Naar-Pho Valley has a total Tibetan character. Phugaon and Naar the two main villages of Naar-Pho are both located at over 4000 meter altitude. Listed as a restricted area trekking permit and travel guide are compulsory which are most likely to be arranged by your trekking agency. A side trip to Naar-Pho requires a total of 9 days if two nights are spent in both Phugaon and Naar.

Annapurna Circuit in Picture.

Annapurna Base Camp 

One of the most regularly visited and most loved trekking trails in Nepal, the Annapurna Base Camp trekking accommodates the incredible taste of Trekking in the Himalayas. The combination of easy walking (some steep uphill climbing & crossing narrow bridge),out of the world scenery and mix of cultures are unmatched by any other trekking routes in Nepal.

The Annapurna Base Camp (ABC) is an elevated glacial basin located in the central Himalayas of Nepal. Most of the trail you tread during this trek is through the protected region of Annapurna Conservation Area Project (ACAP).  The other highlight of the trek is the Annapurna sanctuary, the magical landscape around the Annapurna base camp.

Read Annapurna Base Camp Trek Guide.


Most of the trekking routes of Annapurna Region goes through 7,629 kmAnnapurna Conservation area, which is the largest protected area of Nepal. Among the three major trekking routes (Annapurna Circuit & Annapurna Base Camp) Jomsom -Muktinath is another popular destination.

JomsomMuktinath heading north from pokhara reveals Nepal’s spectacular diversity at its finest. Jomsom (2700 meters)beautiful windy valley nestles in the rain shadows of Mt. Dhaulagiri, whereas Muktinath is a sacred place both for Hindus and Buddhists located in Muktinath Valley ( 3,710 meters)at the foot of the Thorong La mountain pass.

Jomsom Muktinath Trek takes you to the foothills of majestic Dhaulagiri and Annapurna catering diverse highlights of nature and culture from mesmerizing landscapes, scenic Himalayan view and the unique culture.


Not to forget Mustang “former Kingdom of Lo” bordering Tibet is also geographically a part of Annapurna Region.

Mustang remained a mystery for centuries until it was opened for tourist in 1992.If you are craving for something wilderness and exploration the long lost kingdom will surely fascinates you. Mustang is a unique experience taking you beyond the Annapurna and Dhaulagiri, traveling across desert like landscape, barren ridges, deep canyon, cliffs and valleys.

Read Upper Mustang Trek Guide.


Annapurna Region is not just limited to long and tiring trekking trails. Ghorepani Poonhill is the most wonderful short trek with spectacular views of Annapurna.

Panoroma-Annapurana

View from Poon Hill with Annapurna to the right and Dhaulagiri on the left

Ghorepani Poonhill trek is another magnificent addition to Annapurna Region, this trek allows you spectacular mountains sceneries (virgin Fishtail, majestic Annapurna, grand Dhaulagiri and less known beauty Nilgiri and Dhampus Peaks), opportunities to experience the hospitality of Gurung ethnics, lets you be a part of their celebrations and understand how beautiful a life can be, regardless of tough geography in the vicinity.


Easily accessible, plentiful of guest house, unspoiled beauty & its vast bio-diversity with both high mountains and lowland villages; trekking in the region offers unique exposure and experience.


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The Tibetan Side of Everest

The international border between Tibet Autonomous Region and Nepal runs across the summit of the highest mountain on earth “Mount Everest”.

Known as Chomolungma in Tibet the highest mountain of the earth Mount Everest stands tall at 8,848 metres (29,029 ft) above sea level. Then known as Peak XV, Everest attracts many highly experienced mountaineers and adventurers from around the world.

The Northen Base Camp

The Tibetan side of the Mountain, North Base Camp is at at 5,150 metres (16,900 ft) above the Sea Level. The base camps are makeshifts campsites that are used by mountain climbers for several days for acclimatization to reduce the risks and severity of altitude sickness.

The North Base camp is accessible by vehicles through a 100 km road branching to the South from the Friendship Highway.

As of 2010, a visit to the North Base Camp required a permit from the Chinese government & a permit required to visit Tibet.

Base Camp for tourist is located near to Rongbuk Monastery; which claims to be the highest monastery of the world, whereas the actual tibetan base camp is located in the foot of Rongbuk glacier 8 km south to the monastery.

Kangshung Face

The Kangshung Face is the East Face of Mount Everest. Relatively unknown to the outside world till the 20th Century, the eastern side of the Everest owns complex and isolated terrain of Tibet. It is 3,350 metres (11,000 ft) from its base on the Kangshung Glacier to the summit.

The Kangshung Glacier is one of the three main glaciers of Mount Everest, the others being the Khumbu Glacier South Face” and Rongbuk Glacier North Face“.

The east side of Mount Everest is the least accessible and developed side of the mountain.

The Kangshung Glacier can only be reached following 6 to 7 days march from Khata, which includes crossing  the Shao La or Langma La passes into the Kama valley.


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Nepal Travel Guide for 2016

If you are looking for something adventurous, something exciting then Nepal is your perfect destination. Nepal fascinates you with its environmental and cultural diversity like no any other countries in the world. This diverse country has something for everyone regardless of what the interests, let’s say a surprise stored for you in every corner.

The recent April 2015 earthquake has taken thousand of lives made many homeless and many ancients building turned in rebels. Now almost after eight months, Nepal and Nepalese people are back on its feet living a normal life.

Again the question IS Nepal Safe? hits you hard and thinking. Should I or should I not go to Nepal?  Lets us remind u!!

  • Many countries have already uplifted its Travel restriction to Nepal.
  • Thousands of tourist/travelers have visited Nepal after the earthquake according to Nepal Tourism Board (NTB) & TAAN.
  • Nat Geo Traveler Magazine and Forbes, the two leading magazine have listed Nepal on its “Cool list” for 2016.

So, add thrill and adventure to your holiday with some of these must to activities.

Explore the remarkable gems of the Himalayas

Nepal is an only one of its kind trekking destination. Trekking in Nepal is the best way to discover Nepal’s indomitable mixture of natural and cultural wonders while walking on pristine trails of the Himalayas. Almost all of the trekking routes in Nepal take you right through the majestic Himalayas while you walk close to the ethnic villages in the region, explore their rich culture and consider the unique landscape.

Trekking in Nepal is doable in all seasons, depending on which area you want to go and presents you with varying degree of challenges without reducing the thrill. However, the most popular seasons to trek in Nepal are Pre-monsoon (March to June) and Post-monsoon (September to November).

Witness the architectural and cultural marvels

Though holiday in Nepal refers to trekking, insightful tour around Nepal during the visit is a must do. The culture of Nepal is rich and unique. The cultural heritage of Nepal has evolved over the centuries. This multidimensional heritage encompasses the diversities of Nepal’s ethnic, tribal, and social groups. With 8 heritage site listed in the UNESCO Cultural heritage site.

Age, physical condition and time are not obstacles to explore Nepal. Note that not all but only few cultural sites have been affected by the earthquake. The affected area is barred and lanes have been marked for the safety of the visitors. You can still walk around and visit many other temples and historic buildings that remain throughout the country.

Up close and personal with the Mountains

Home to the highest mountain of the world Mt. Everest, Nepal has always attracted mountaineering enthusiasts, amateur and experienced alike. If you are upto the challenge then Nepal is right place. Among the identified 1310 peaks above 6000 meter, one quarter are officially opened for mountaineering activities. Peak climbing in Nepal gives you the experience of both trekking and mountaineering.

The growing popularity of the trekking peaks in Nepal is down to the fact that visitors not only get to trek some of the world’s popular trails, but also experience the adventure of mountaineering. Depending upon the amount of time and climbing experience you have, you can choose a peak that best suits you.

Relive the adventure

Nepal is a perfect playground for those adventure junkies who love blood pumping, heart racing, breathtaking, and thrilling adventure. Nepal caters some of the best of best adventures which will surely get your adrenalin going.

Be apart of a fascinating tales to tell your friends as you experience the thrills in the land of adventures.

Keeping close to the nature

Amidst the hype of the miraculous thrill of the Himalayan terrain and the beautiful yet challenging peaks, it is easy to forget that Nepal has a total of 14 national parks and wildlife reserves. Wildlife diversity is a notable feature of Nepal. Home for some of the mostly endangered species in the subcontinent, terai region of Nepal has some of the most exciting jungle safari destinations of the Indian subcontinent.

Experience the wilderness on a back of an elephant or a four wheel jeep jungle safari ride. Keeping up close with the nature can be perfect holidaying option.


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Buddhist Prayer Wheel

Prayer Wheel at Boudhanath Stupa

Prayer Wheel at Boudhanath Stupa

Prayer wheel cylindrical in shape (Mani Wheels in Tibet) is a devices used for spreading spiritual blessing and well being.  Mostly made from metal or wood, the prayer wheel contains rolls of prayer (mantra) OM Mani Padme Hum, written numerous times on paper and the same prayer is decorated outside of the cylinder in an ancient Tibetan and Indian scripts. Used mostly by the Buddhists of Nepal and Tibet during prayer to acquire good karma and decontaminate bad karma, and also is believed to help them develop compassion and wisdom by spinning the prayer wheel.


Origin

Three Buddha Park in Swambunath

In the center the Amitaba Buddha statue, at his left side Avalokiteshvara and to the right Padmasambhava.

According to the Tibetan tradition the prayer wheel was introduced by a famous Indian Buddhist scholar Arya Nagarjuna. The Tibetan text also says the prayer wheel was brought to Tibet by the well renowned eight century Indian Buddhist teacher Padmasambhava, and afterward practiced by the great Indian Buddhist masters Tilopa and Naropa and later passed it on to the Tibet’s well known yogis. Since then the Prayer Wheel has been passed on to numbers of enlightened teachers all around the world.


Symbolism and Spiritual Belief of the wheel

A Tibetan woman in Kathmandu with her prayer wheel

A Tibetan woman in Kathmandu with her prayer wheel

The Buddhist or Tibetan prayer wheel symbolizes the universal law and reflection of that law in the morals of human. The rim of the wheel represents the cycle of birth, death and rebirth; a cycle of suffering that Buddhists endeavors to set them free from. The core of the wheel indicates freedom, while the spokes symbolize the various pathways to achieve liberation. There are in general eight spokes or more, in multiples of eight, refer to the noble eight fold path, the way to the end of suffering as taught by the Lord Gautam Buddha.

Buddhists, mainly within the Tibetan tradition have a belief just touching and turning a prayer wheel brings inconceivable purification and hoards implausible merit. The Prayer Wheel is a physical expression of recitation of mantra, as the spinning of the wheel and the round movement of the written mantra inside and out is the same to the speech of the human voice. The rotation of the wheel is a form of speech for the turning of the wheel of Dharma, described as the Buddha’s first teaching. Always spun clockwise, It is also believed turning of the prayer wheels helps gain insight and compassion.


Om Mane Padme Hum the Mantra

The colored mantra in Tibetan with the six syllables

Colored mantra in Tibetan with the six syllables.

The prayer (mantra) on the outside and inside of prayer wheels is a six-syllable mantra has several versions. The literal translation is “the jewel in the lotus,” or “praise to the jewel in the lotus” or, basically, the “jeweled lotus”.


Types of Prayer wheels

Mani Wheel: Also known as hand wheel the Mani wheel has a cylindrical shape mounted on a metal shaft or pin set into a wooden or metal handle that rotates on a round bearing which are usually made of Turbinella (conch) Shell. The cylinder is attached with chain, the weighted chain allows itself to spin by slight rotation of the wrist.

Water Wheel: A prayer wheel that is turned by flowing water. It is said the water that is touched by the wheel is said to become sacred and carries its purifying power into all life.

Fire Wheel: Turned by the heat of a candle or electric light. It is believed that the light released from the prayer wheel cleanses the negative karmas.

Wind Wheel: Turned by wind. The wind that touches the prayer wheel helps ease the negative karma of those it touches

Stationary prayer Wheel: Many monasteries and Buddhist pilgrimage have large, fixed, metal wheels set side by side in a row. Devotees can turn the wheels simply by sliding their hands over each one.

Electric dharma Wheel: “Thardo Khorlo,” as these electric wheels are occasionally known, includes one thousand copies of the mantra of Chenrezig and many copies of other mantra, and are powered by electric motors.


Types of Prayer wheels in Pictures


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Boudhanath Stupa: Sacred desitination in Nepal

Boudhanath Stupa

Boudhanath Stupa

Boudhanath Stupa also knows as (Boudha, Bouddhanath or Baudhanath or the Khasa Caitya) is one of the skylines dominating stupa in Kathmandu Nepal.  Also famous for the holiest Tibetan Buddhist pilgrimage temple outside Tibet the Boudhanath Stupa is the center of Tibetan culture and rich in Buddist symbolsim.

About 11 km from the center and northeastern outskirts of Kathmandu, the Simple, immense and influential stupa rises above the numerous buildings with its painted eyes gazing earnestly over the countryside.


History

Numerous fascinating myths are told on the subject of the construction of the Boudhanath Stupa. The first stupa at Bodhnath was built sometime after AD 600, when the Tibetan king, Songtsen Gampo, changed to Buddhism. According to legends, the king constructed the stupa as an act of apology after unintentionally killing his father. Sadly the frist stupa was demolished by the Mughal in the 14 Century and the current stupa was constructed.


What you see in Boudhanath Stupa

The form and the alternated squares and circles represent a three-dimensional mandala, which is comprised of conceptual religious concepts and seen in all Tibetan mandalas. Every piece has symbolic significance from the base, dome; square harmika, spire, and pinnacle represent the five elements (earth, water, fire, air and ether). The 13 rings from the base to the summit represent the path to enlightenment. The stupa is surrounded by an irregular 16-sided wall with 108 small images of the Dhyani Buddha Amitabha (108 is an auspicious number in Tibetan culture) and a ring of prayer wheels with the mantra of Avalokiteshvara – Om Mani Padme Hum which is carved on it.

The base of the stupa consists of three big platforms, lessening in size. These platforms represent Earth. Walking around the platform you can enjoy the perfect view of beautiful mountain range while in the background you can listen to the chant of Buddhist devotes doing kora “walking around the stupa while praying”. The two round in shape plinths which symbolizes water support the hemisphere of the stupa. The question mark symbol type which denotes the nose is actually Nepali character of Number 1, which represents the Unity and the only way to reach enlightenment. The 13 steps square tower represents the ladder of enlightenment and the top of the tower is cover with gold canopy which represent air.

Flag prayers tied to the stupa waves in the wind which carries mantra and heavenward. The Boudhanath stupa is surrounded with narrow alley and streets which are lined with monastery, and streets vendors. The base of the stupa is open from 5am to 6pm and till 7pm in the summer.


♦ Gallery ♦ 


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