Nepal, Charity Challenge Trek

Overview

Length: 13 Days

Group Dates:   Size: 4 – 10
Oct 28 – Nov 09, 2014
Apr 01 – 13, 2015

Private Dates: for 4 or more persons

Level: Vigorous. Trekking

Price: $2,095 + $500 minimum ‘Challenge’ commitment for Save the Children

Days 1-2– Kathmandu, Nepal
Day 3– Jiri
Days 4-10– Jiri to Phaplu trek to stay in teahouses and lodges
Day 11– Kathmandu
Day 12– KTM, volunteer project and cooking class
Day 13– Return


Summary

Join us on an incredible journey as we trek in Nepal ’s Himalaya and raise money to support Save the Children. Start in exotic Kathmandu where golden temples, fluttering prayer flags and chants of Buddhist monks will delight all your senses. Trek in an area called Jiri, once an old trading route and once starting point for many Everest expeditions.

Trek past barley fields and giant rhododendrons while prayer flags, chortens, and Mani stones line your route. Stay overnight at guest lodges in ethnic villages. Feel the power of the flowing Tama Koshi River. Stand in awe as you view not only Mount Everest, but dozens of other Himalayan peaks before you.

And, as good as all that sounds, it might just pale in comparison to the warmth and friendliness of the Sherpa people.

Responsible travel – Make it Meaningful

Save the Children Charity Challenge… are you up for it? Save the Children is the world’s largest independent organization for children, delivering programs in more than 120 countries around the world. Almost 1 million children directly benefited from programs in education, health, protection, livelihood, HIV & AIDS, and children’s rights; while another 1.2 million indirectly benefited.

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Itinerary

Note: Trip begins in Kathmandu, Nepal on Day 1. Flights from the US cross the international dateline. This may require departing your hometown one or more days in advance, and some passengers may require an overnight in Delhi or Bangkok prior to arriving into Kathmandu.

Note: B = Breakfast, L = Lunch, D = Dinner

Day 1 – Kathmandu

Arrival to Kathmandu-pick up and transfer to hotel. Rest up from your long journey and explore the area. We will all meet for a welcome dinner. (Elevation: 4,600 feet / 1,400 meters)
D

Day 2 – Kathmandu

Kathmandu valley sightseeing including Baudhanath, Sywabhunath (Monkey Temple) and Durbar square. After visiting Durbar square, we walk back to the hotel via old Asan Baazar.
B, L, D

Day 3 – To Jiri

An early morning departure for an 8-hour drive to Jiri (6,500’ / 1,975m) with lunch and stops along the way. Jiri is a small town named after Jirel, the primary ethnic people who live in and around the town. This area used to be an old trading route and the starting point for Mt. Everest expeditions including the famed first successful ascent by Tenzing Sherpa and sir Edmund Hillary.

Today, however, climbers use Lukla as a start point as there is an airport there. Overnight at a guesthouse in Jiri (6,500’ / 1975m)
B, L, D

Day 4 – Jiri to Shivalaya

OK folks, this is why we’re here! So, lace-em-up, and let’s hit the trail! Start with an 2.5 hour climb through beautiful forests past tiny hamlets to Mali Danda (8,000’) and then descend 2.5 hours to our guesthouse in Shivalaya (5,800’ / 1800 m), a small village inhabited by Tamangs and Newars on the bank of the Shivalaya River.

Trek time: 5 hours, Elevation Gain: 1,500’, Loss: 700’, High point: 8,000’, End: 5,800’

Day 5  Shivalaya – Bhandar

A long, steady climb leads to Deurali (8,000’), a small hamlet with amazing mountain views. Descend the final ½ hour to Bhandar (6,500’ / 2190m), a Sherpa village with two stupas and a small monastery. Overnight at guesthouse.

Trek time: 6 hours, Elevation Gain: 700’. High point: 8,000’. End: 6,500’

Day 6 – Bhandar – Namkheli

Descend for a couple of hours arriving at the Likhu Khola (river). Then, a slow gradual uphill trek of three hours leads to Namkheli (9,200’ / 2800m). Guesthouse overnight.

Trek time: 6 hours, Elevation Gain: 2,700’. High point: 9,200’

Day 7 – Namkheli – Golla – Ngaur

Yep, straight up again… 2 hours through a forest of pines and rhododendrons to Golla (9,800 / 2980m), a typical Sherpa village, whose inhabitants are mainly farmers. Each household has some cows, and dzom (a cross between a yak and cow). Continue 4 hours to the hilltop hamlet of Ngaur (11,000’ / 3350m). Enjoy spectacular views of Gaurishankar and Numbur Himal.

Ngaur has six houses and a small monastery. Nearby is a cheese factory, where one can taste and buy cheese made from nak (female yak).

Trek time: 6 hours, Elevation Gain: 1,800’. High point: 11,000’

Day 8 – Ngaur – Jhorse

A bit shorter trek day, although still mostly uphill to Jhorse (12,000’ / 3650m).

Trek time: 4 hours, Elevation Gain: 1,000’. High point: 12,000’

Day 9 – Jhorse – Pike Peak – Loding

The trek ascends to Pike Peak (13,350 feet, 4,070 m) from where you could see stunning views of Mount Everest as well as a multitude of snow capped peaks ranging from Mt. Kanchanjanga to the east to Mt. Manaslu to the west.

After a long break at the top, we descend slowly for about 4 hours to reach the Mangar ethnic village of Loding (9,075’ / 2766m).

Trek time: 6 hours, Gain: 1,350’. Loss: 4,275’. High point: 13,350’. End: 9,075’

Day 10 – Loding – Phaplu

On a Nepali flat (which actually means ‘up and down’), we do about three hours to reach Phaplu (7,920’ / 2470m). Two days of descent have made our breathing much easier. Most of the afternoon will be for celebrations at the lodge, and relaxation, while we wait for our flight out of the area the next day.

Trek time: 3 hours, Elevation Loss: 1,100’. High point: 9,075. End: 7,920’

Day 11 – Phaplu to Kathmandu

Fly to Kathmandu (flight included)
B

Day 12 – Kathmandu

Visit one of our volunteer project sites. Have you enjoyed the food in Nepal? Good… why not learn how to cook it yourself! We’ve arranged for a ‘COOK Like a Local’ cooking class for lunchtime. Time for a massage or some final shopping before our final farewell dinner.
B, L (cooking class), D

Day 13 – Transfers to airport after breakfast

For those with lots more time, we can arrange volunteer work for any number of days; or, you could consider flying to Pokhara to visit our 3 Sisters / Empowering Women of Nepal program.

Note on Itinerary

Although we do our best to adhere to the schedule listed above, this itinerary is subject to change for numerous reasons beyond our control.

Trip Details

Group Departure(s):
Oct 28 – Nov 09, 2014
Apr 01 – Apr 13, 2015

Private Departures – for groups of 4 or more

Group Size: 4 – 10 persons
Minimum Age: 16 (see below)
4 – 10 persons: $2,095 (includes one-way flight Phaplu – KTM)
+ $500 Charity Challenge pledge

International Airfare not included
Per Person, Double occupancy
Own Room: $280 (see below)
This fee is just for 4 nights in Kathmandu. No single accommodations on trek

What’s Included

  • International airfare
  • Any hotel costs while en route prior to Day 1
  • Meals not noted on itinerary
  • Insurance
  • Tip for your city-guide (optional)
  • Tip for your trekking staff (optional)
  • Excess baggage charges; airport taxes
  • Cost of medical immunizations
  • Cost of obtaining a passport
  • Cost of tourist visa on arrival at airport ($30)
  • Items of a personal nature (sodas, alcoholic beverages, laundry, etc.)

What’s Not Included

  • International airfare
  • Any hotel costs while en route prior to Day 1
  • Meals not noted on itinerary
  • Insurance
  • Tip for your city-guide (optional)
  • Tip for your trekking staff (optional)
  • Excess baggage charges; airport taxes
  • Cost of medical immunizations
  • Cost of obtaining a passport
  • Cost of tourist visa on arrival at airport ($30)
  • Items of a personal nature (sodas, alcoholic beverages, laundry, etc.)

Save The Children – Charity Challenge

We are so excited to partner with Save the Children. Each tour participant / trekker is asked to raise the minimum pledge commitment of $500. (but don’t stop there… after all, this is a challenge!). Get your family, friends, co-workers, dog-walker, hair-stylist involved!

Your combined efforts will go a long way in delivering much-needed programming in: maternity care, education, child rights, child protection, health & nutrition and more. Does your company offer “Matching Donations”… GREAT! Get them on board!

Save the Children, Nepal has identified these urgent needs for 2012/2013: Mother-child health care and maternity clinics

Some examples of what our combined efforts can help….

  • $300 can help train 1 health worker
  • $1,250 can help repair and maintain a birthing clinic
  • $5,000 can help establish an entire birth center including 2 health workers, 9 field clinicians and medicine

Visa Information

U.S. citizens traveling to Nepal can obtain a visa on arrival at the Nepal airport.   Always check the U.S Dept. Of State website for the most up-to-date information: www.travel.state.gov

Air Travel

International airfare is not included. Please always check with us before purchasing your airline tickets to verify your arrival and departure schedule and to ensure your trip has the necessary minimum number of participants required to operate. Contact your local travel agent, airline, or preferred on-line booking service for airfare needs.

Tier Pricing

Meaningful travel works best with a small group of people and some trips have tier pricing. Our minimum is set at four persons. It may be possible to operate the tour with less than four persons by charging a small group surcharge. Note: trips are priced according to the number of full-price passengers on the trip. (MeaningfulTrip staff, travel writers and other discounted travelers are excluded from the count for this purpose.)

Single Travelers

If you specifically request single accommodations, you will be asked to pay the full single supplement noted above. If you wish to share accommodations, we will assign you a same-gender roommate if one is available. If a roommate cannot be found, you will be asked to pay a reduced single fee which is half of the full single supplement. There are only a limited number of single rooms available on most departures. NOTE: Single supplement is ONLY for hotel nights in Kathmandu (4 nights total). There are no requested single accommodations while trekking.

Choose your own Departure

Small groups of four or more can pick their own desired departure dates. So grab your family, your neighbors, or your best friends and call us.

Customized Private Groups

Family reunions, corporate groups, wedding parties, student groups, church groups, and any groups interested in a customized departure are welcome to contact us.

Private Group Discount

For a full private group of 10 full-paying passengers, each person receives a $50 discount. (Or, donate that extra $500 (10 x $50) to Save the Children, and Meaningful Trip will MATCH it!)

Payment & Cancellation Policy

Payment
Deposit of $500 due at time of reservation. Final balance due 90 days prior to trip departure.

Cancellation

If you cancel prior to departure (we need written notice), cancellation fees are:
91 or more days… $0
61 to 90 days… $500
31 to 60 days… 50% of Trip Cost
0 to 30 days… 100% of Trip Cost

Insurance

Meaningful Trip strongly recommends travel insurance. Our preferred travel insurance provider is World Nomads.  Their ‘Standard’ policy starts at $69 and covers Medical, Trip Cancellation, Baggage, and Emergency Evacuation.   Links can be found on our Deposit, Sign-up, and ‘Travel Resources’ pages.

Note to Non-Trekkers

Non-trekkers are most welcome to join this trip. For the 8-days that the rest of the group goes trekking in the mountains, we will arrange lower walks, cultural visits and volunteer time at a Save the Children school or other project. If additional hotel nights are needed instead of trekking lodges, additional costs apply.

Trip Level and Qualifications

Vigorous
Recommended for fit travelers. Moderate hiking experience and conditioning required. Activity: 5 – 8 hours trekking daily at high elevation, while carrying your own small daypack (water, essentials and warm layers). Surfaces: mountainous, exposed terrain with steep ascents/descents and uneven trails. Elevations: will range from 6,000 – 14,000 feet.

It is important that you read our information about Altitude Mountain Sickness. A doctor’s release is required for persons age 60 or older. It’s arduous travel just getting to Nepal and, in Kathmandu, expect to encounter pollution and traffic noise.

Minimum Age: 16

As most all of our travelers are adults, our minimum age on all trips is 16 years old (unless on a specifically-designated ‘Family Trips’ or ‘Private Trips’). Ages 16 – 20, must be accompanied by an adult.

Weather

The spring and fall are the two trekking seasons for Nepal. In the spring (March, April), the lowland trails are lined with blooming rhododendron; daytime temperatures are mild (mid-70s) and evenings (40’s – and even colder at the highest elevations). In the fall (October, November, beginning December), days are typically sunny and clear with moderate temperatures (60’s) and the evenings are usually quite cold! (30’s – 40’s).

Lodging

Hotels in Kathmandu were carefully selected for their comfort, service, staff friendliness and commitment to sustainability. Rooms will have single or double beds with heat, full toilet bathrooms and other amenities. While trekking, the teahouses or guesthouses are simple and basic, but you will be well taken care of.

There are typically 2 – 3 small beds per room. Some guesthouses have inside toilets, whereas others might have an outhouse located outside. See our Lodging section for photos of typical accommodations.

Food

Nepal has great food. Dal (lentils), bhat (rice), aloo (potatoes), tarkari (curried vegetable) are common. Kathmandu offers a wide range of cuisine including favorite western dishes too. While trekking: breakfast might be Tibetan bread – pan fried bread served with mountain honey and butter, or muesli, or an occasional omelet.

Typical lunchtime favorites are: chowmein (fried noodles with vegetables), momos (steamed dumplings), or aloo (boiled potatoes with sauce). Dinners might be fried noodles, vegetable curry, dal (lentils), momos and who knows… maybe even the occasional mountain pizza!

General Information

This trip is subject to the booking information set forth in the Meaningful Trips Terms and Conditions. Please read this information carefully. Additional pre-departure information including a Packing List, Medical Form and Liability Release Form is emailed upon sign-up.

Signing up is Easy!

A no risk $500 deposit reserves your spot and is 100% fully refundable if you change your mind for any reason at all, more than 90-days out! Call or click today. Reserve your spot. Then leave the rest to us.

Your meaningful trip awaits. Space is limited. Reserve today.

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Make Annapurna Charity Challenge Meaningful

What We Believe

At our core, we believe that meaningful and responsible tourism is a conduit for peace and global understanding. Way beyond tourism… we gain insight, discover new perspectives, develop lifelong memories, we become change agents for creating a better world.

Nepal, Charity Challenge Trek for Save the Children

Are you up for it? Save the Children is the world’s largest independent organization for children, delivering programs in more than 120 countries around the world. Almost 1 million children directly benefited from programs in education, health, protection, livelihood, HIV & AIDS, and children’s rights; while another 1.2 million indirectly benefited.

“Although interaction w our staff and Nepali society gives me hope that we will face the challenges ahead, what gives me the greatest inspiration is listening to children. This year I participated in the National Girl-Child consultation and I was inspired by the work that girls were doing in their communities to fight against early child marriage, child labor, child trafficking and other issues facing them.

I saw confidence and dedication and I heard challenging questions and demand for action from them. I imagined a few years into the future, where these girls will be national leaders speaking on these issues. My message to the girls was that, although progress is being made today in Nepal regarding children’s rights, this progress will be accelerated when they themselves exercise their voice – they are the key to the breakthroughs that we all want to see.”

Brian Hunter, Country Director, Save the Children Nepal Program

Save the Children has identified a specific need for projects tending to Maternal and Mother-baby care. Our charity challenge fundraising will focus efforts here as well as towards children’s initiatives.

Our Pledge

All our tours support environmental, economic and social endeavors in the areas we visit. We hire locally. We choose hotels based on their efforts toward sustainability. We promote women’s employment, education and empowerment with all our partners. We support local livelihoods on every element of our tours.

MeaningfulTrip’s Triple Give

In addition to all of the above, we:

  • Make contributions to selected global projects, NGO’s, or causes in countries we visit.
  • Make a contribution to Global Giving, a non-profit that connects donors with grassroots projects around the world. MeaningfulTrips is proud to partner with Global Giving and we will specifically target projects that support hunger and poverty needs in the USA.
  • Pledge 1% of our end-of-year net profits to a Meaningful Trip Trust.

Lodging & Amenities

Annapurna Charity Challenge LodgingAnnapurna Charity Challenge LodgingAnnapurna Charity Challenge Lodging


Embassies

US embassies abroad
Foreign embassies located in USA

Passports

US State Department (passports) – Everything you need to know about passports.

Visas Link

US State Department (visas) – Visa and entry & exit requirements

Visa Services

Zierer Visa Services – ZVS has offices in San Francisco, New York, Houston, Miami, Washington DC, and Florida

Destination Information

Geographia – This site contains concise profiles of major countries in Africa, Asia, Caribbean, Europe, and Latin America. Provides information on: geography, climate, culture, people, history.

World Time

TheTimeNow.com – Find out what time it is, anywhere in the world.

Money Matters

Currency Converter

Health Information

Information on vaccines and advice on how to stay healthy while traveling.

Center for Disease Control – Travel health information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Includes reference material and recommendations by geographic region.

High Altitude Issues

ISMM, International Society for Mountain Medicine – Comprehensive information on Acclimatization and Acute Mountain Sickness, including prevention, recognition, and treatment of altitude illness.

Weather

Intellicast Weather Site – This site gives current weather all over the world, as well as historic average temperatures and rainfall, and sunrise/sunset, moonrise/moonset, and the phases of the moon.

Clothing & Gear

Meaningful Trip’s recommended outdoor retailers specializing in adventure and responsible travel.

Altrec – The number one source for all your favorite outdoor adventure brands including Mountain Hardwear, Arc’Teryx, Mountainsmith, Oakley, Marmot and many more! A true leader in online shopping.

Columbia Sportswear – “Trying stuff takes us to places we never imagined”

Dana Design – At Dana Design, we seek comfort for those who travel far. It’s why serious trekkers aren’t just partial to Dana Design. They’re devoted.

EagleCreek – Eagle Creek offers the most comprehensive selection of packs, wheeled luggage, duffels, packing, and travel accessories.

ExOfficio – Ex Officio’s adventure travel and urban travel clothing collections are designed to play an active role in your comfort when traveling. The perfect blend of function, low maintenance and multi-climate comfort for everything from hiking, rafting, safaris and cultural tours.

Kelty – Manufacturer of quality outdoor apparel, backpacks, tents, sleeping bags, travel gear and child carriers.

The NorthFace – The North Face provides an extensive line of performance clothing, equipment and footwear.

Patagonia – Patagonia is world famous for its quality clothing and gear. MeaningfulTrip loves Patagonia for their environmentalism and their 1% for the planet program.

Salomon – Find out why their boots are the best in the business.

Teva Footwear – Teva Footwear. Buy your Tevas direct from Teva.com. Select from over 100 models.

Books & Maps

Lonely Planet – With content sections labeled The Thorn Tree, World Guide, On the Road, and The Scoop, you know Lonely Planet’s site is much more than just their terrific guidebooks.

Maps – An online World Atlas which covers 7 continents, 12 regions, 190 countries, and 50 US States.
Activity Levels and Qualifications

Activity Levels

Easy
All welcome. Travel at a relaxed pace. May include driving of 3 – 4 hours on some days. Activity: easy walking and light hiking, 1 – 3 hours, at low elevation. May include less demanding, half-day trips that may include: bicycling, sea kayaking, or rafting (Class I-II rapids), and these activities are optional. Minimum Age: 16* (see note below).

Moderate
Recommended for fit travelers with a spirit of adventure. Travel at a moderate pace. Activity: moderate walking and hiking, 3 – 4 hours daily, at elevations which may range from 5,000 – 10,000 feet. May include less demanding half-day or day-trips that may include: bicycling, sea kayaking, or rafting (Class I-II rapids), and these activities are optional. May include driving of 3 – 4 hours on some days.

Minimum Age: 16* (see below).

Vigorous
Recommended for fit travelers. Moderate hiking experience and conditioning are required. Activity: 5 – 8 hours trekking daily at high elevation, while carrying your own small daypack (water, essentials and warm layers). Surfaces: mountainous, exposed terrain with steep ascents/descents and uneven trails. Elevations: will range from 6,000 – 14,000 feet. It is important that you read our information about Altitude Mountain Sickness. A doctor’s release is required for persons age 60 or older. Minimum Age: 16 (see below).

Strenuous
Designed for very fit travelers. Typically, for extended high-altitude trekking or mountaineering. Activity: 8+ hours/day. Distances: Trek 10 – 12 miles most days. Elevation change: up to 4,000 ft/day. Altitude: may exceed 15,000 ft. Surfaces: remote, mountainous, exposed terrain with steep ascents/descents, uneven trails with loose features. Experience and conditioning required. A doctor’s release is required for all participants. Minimum age: 18.

Minimum Age

As most of our travelers are adults, our minimum age on all trips is 16 years old (unless on a specifically-designated ‘Private Group Departure’ or ‘Family Departure’). Ages 16 – 20, must be accompanied by an adult.

Annapurna Charity Challenge Map