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Highlights Kathmandu, mountain views from Nagarkot, Bhaktapur ancient centre,
Trisuli river rafting option, Chitwan wildlife safaris, Lakeside Pokhara, trekking to Poon Hill, hilltop village of Bandipur
Classic Nepal small group tour
Classic Nepal
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This comprehensive tour of Nepal takes you on a journey across one of the most spectacularly beautiful countries in the world. Amazing mountain scenery mixed with lush, wildlife rich jungles, ancient hilltop villages stand in contrast to the hustle and bustle of Kathmandu.

Our 15-day tour begins with a walking tour of Kathmandu before we drive to Chitwan National Park in the lowland Terai region of Nepal, close to the Indian border. There's an option available today to do an afternoon of exciting white water rafting on the Trisuli river, en-route to the park. We have two nights at a wildlife lodge at Chitwan, and enjoy a range of activities in the park, including a jungle walk, traditional river canoe trip and elephant safari (jeep safaris are also available seasonally). Outside the park we'll take a rural village walk to see how the local Tharu people live, and an early morning bird watching walk is also available for those keen. Chitwan is famous for its population of Asian rhinos, and there are also numerous other animals and birds to see including several species of deer and monkeys, wild boar, sloth bear, elephants, gharial and mugger crocodiles, and if you're very lucky you may catch a glimpse of a tiger too.

Next we head to the hilltop Newari town of Bandipur, the centre of which has been carefully restored and is well worth exploring. After some great mountain views from here we head to the lakeside town of Pokhara at the foot of the Annapurna range before starting a 5-day trek through the Himalayan foothills to the spectacular viewpoint of Poon Hill. We stay in locally owned trekking lodges and experienced guides and porters will accompany you on the trek. This is a moderate trek with a couple of long days and plenty of up and down, but you certainly don't need to be super-fit. You'll walk through a wide variety of landscapes and countryside including riverside trails, rhododendron forests, terraced farmland and grassy ridges, always enjoying different views of the mighty Annapurna range above you.

After a little free time to relax in Pokhara after the trek we return to Kathmandu and spend a night at the village of Nagarkot, perched on the rim of the Kathmandu Valley. After a morning sunrise and hopefully stunning views of the Himalayas, including Mount Everest in the far distance, we return to Kathmandu via Bhaktapur, where we take time to enjoy the wonderful, intricately carved, wooden architecture of the traditional Hindu temples and surrounding buildings. The tour then ends back in Kathmandu.

Private tour option

If our scheduled departure dates don’t work for you, or you would prefer not to travel with a group, then we can also run this tour privately for you. Please contact us for more information and prices.
View Tour Dossier    
Day 1 Arrive in Kathmandu. Transfer to hotel
We greet you on your arrival in Kathmandu airport today and transfer you to your hotel in the Thamel tourist disctrict of the city. Our rep will help you settle in and familiarise you with the local area.
OvernightKathmandu - 3 star hotelExtrasSingle Room Supplement, Extra day - pre-tour, Bardia National Park Extension
Day 2 Kathmandu walking tour. Swayambunath temple
Our tour starts today with a guided walk from our hotel in Thamel through small back streets full of numerous tiny shops, workshops, temples, and stupas to Durbar Square with its array of wooden and stone carved temples and palaces. After lunch at a rooftop restaurant overlooking the square, we drive to the important Swayambunath Stupa which sits on a hilltop overlooking the city, visible from miles around. Also known locally as the 'monkey temple', we'll see these nimble inhabitants scampering in and around the trees and temple.
OvernightKathmandu hotelMealsBreakfastExtrasEverest Mountain Flight
Day 3 Drive to Chitwan National Park. Rafting option
This morning we drive out of the Kathmandu Valley and drive to Chitwan National Park in the lowland Terai region of Nepal that borders India. This will be our first taste of rural Nepal, and we'll see terraced farmland, forested hills, and rushing rivers. An option is available today to spend a few hours white water rafting on the Trisuli river (those choosing this option will rejoin the group in Chitwan this evening). On arrival in Chitwan, we check into our lodge, and then take an early evening village walk to see how the local Tharu people live and work.
OvernightChitwan - lodgeMealsBreakfast, DinnerExtrasTrisuli white water rafting
Day 4 Chitwan National Park wildlife safaris
We spend the whole day today exploring Chitwan National Park in search of the endangered Asian one-horned rhino, which Chitwan is famous for protecting. If you're very lucky you may also see a leopard, wild elephant or sloth bear, or even an elusive Bengal tiger, while the rhino, deer, monkeys, sloth bears, wild boar and numerous different birdlife are common sightings. Activities included are a jungle walk, river canoe trip and elephant safari. You may also take a jeep safari in the afternoon if you wish in place of the elephant safari.
OvernightRafting campMealsBreakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 5 Chitwan to the hilltop village of Bandipur
Early this morning you can take a walk outside the park dedicated mainly to bird watching, or you can take an early morning elephant ride if you didnít do one yesterday (extra fee). After breakfast we leave Chitwan and the Terai and drive to the ancient hilltop Newari trading village of Bandipur. The centre of Bandipur has been restored, and is vehicle free, with some lovely old buildings. You have time this afternoon to relax here, or take a walk or hike through the surrounding fields, villages and hills. Walks include a 2-hour downhill hike through fields and forest to Siddha Cave, one of the largest in Asia and full of impressive rock formations (bring a torch). You can hike back uphill to Bandipur from here or walk down to the highway for our vehicle to pick you up. A shorter walk from the town centre can take you uphill for around 30min to the Thani Mai Temple, which is well worth it for its views at sunset if the weather is clear. In fact the whole of Bandipur affords good mountain views.
OvernightChitwan - lodgeMealsBreakfast
Day 6 Bandipur to Pokhara. Afternoon tour
We leave Bandipur this morning and drive on to the lakeside town of Pokhara, which sits at the base of the Annapurna range of mountains and is the main access point for trekking and rafting in the area. We will visit various places around Pokhara this afternoon, including the Peace Pagoda, Tibetan refugee camp and Devi Falls.
OvernightChitwan - lodgeMealsBreakfast
Day 7 Drive to Naya Pul. Trek to Ghandruk
We drive through low hills and valleys via the village of Lumle to Nayapul. We start our trek through the Annapurna foothills here by walking to Birethanti (approx. 1-2 hours) before continuing on a path following the Modi Khola river which is fairly flat until you begin your long ascent from Shauli Bazaar to Ghandruk. The town of Ghandruk is an important settlement in the region and is the heart of the Annapurna Conservation Area Project, as well as home to thousands of serving and retired Gurkha soldiers. The total trekking for today is approximately 5-6 hours.
OvernightGhandruk - trekking lodgeMealsBreakfastExtrasTrekking Pack
Day 8 Trekking from Ghandruk to Tadapani
The walk from Ghandruk to Tadapani passes through several types of forest, some with unusual trails of moss hanging down from the tree branches. The rhododendron forest here is considered one of the largest in the world, and is a spectacular sight in spring when the trees come into flower. Once you arrive in Tadapani you will be rewarded with spectacular views of Annapurna South, Hiunchuli and Machhapuchhare. The total trekking for today is approximately 4 hours, so you have plenty of time for photo stops and perhaps to visit the Old Gurung museum before you leave Ghandruk which displays traditional clothes and equipment used by the local Gurung people.
OvernightTadapani - trekking lodgeMealsBreakfast
Day 9 Trekking from Tadapani to Ghorepani
The trail between Tadapani and Ghorepani crosses several river valleys and winds its way through more rhododendron forests where monkeys are often seen. After leaving the mountain forests behind you can get some clearer views before arriving in Bantanthi. You have time to rest for a while in Bantanthi before climbing through forests and following a grass and pine covered ridge to Ghorepani. The total trekking for today is approximately 4-5 hours.
OvernightGhorepani - trekking lodgeMealsBreakfast
Day 10 Sunrise on Poon Hill. Trekking from Ghorepani to Tirkhedunga
We start early today and climb up to Poon Hill for great views of the Annapurna Range and Macchapuchare in particular. The rising mists over the foothills of the Himalayas stretching into the distance away from you are also a beautiful sight. After returning to the lodge for breakfast, we walk down to Tirkhedunga through oak and rhododendron forests via Nangethanti, Banthanti and a steep stepped descent from Ulleri. Todayís trekking time is approximately 5-6 hours.
OvernightTirkhedunga - trekking lodgeMealsBreakfast
Day 11 Finish trek. Free time in Pokhara
We finish trekking today by walking from Tirkhedunga back to Naya Pul with some more steep descents and beautiful scenery. After driving back into Pokhara the rest of the day is free to relax, take a boat out on the lake, or enjoy a relaxing meal and drink at one of the Lakeside area's many restaurantsj while reflecting on your trek. Todayís trekking time is approximately 3 hours.
OvernightPokhara - 3 star hotelMealsBreakfast
Day 12 Transfer from Pokhara to Kathmandu
We leave the Annapurna region behind today and take a tourist bus back to Kathmandu. The remainder of the day is free to settle back into busy city life again!
OvernightKathmandu - 3 star hotelMealsBreakfast
Day 13 Bhaktapur ancient centre, Nagarkot
This morning you have the option of taking a spectacular mountain viewing flight to see Everest and its surrounding peaks up close. Otherwise, the morning is free to check out the shops and markets in Kathmandu for some souvenirs. This afternoon we visit one of the other ancient cities in the Kathmandu valley, Bhaktapur. The centre of Bhaktapur has been designated a World Heritage Site, and hosts the best preserved ancient buildings and temples in the Kathmandu valley, with some great examples of traditional wooden architecture to be seen. Our tour here will really give you a taste for how life has been led in the valley for centuries, and you'll see several traditional crafts still taking place, including a whole square dedicated to pottery. Later, we head into the hills surrounding the valley and spend the night in the village of Nagarkot. The village is perched on a ridge and is known for having some of the best views in the Kathmandu Valley.
OvernightNagarkot - 3 star hotelMealsBreakfastExtrasEverest Mountain Flight
Day 14 Walk to Changu Narayan temple. Pasupatinath and Boudhanath
This morning we hope for spectacular sunrise views from Nagarkot before walking downhill through the Tilkot Forest Reserve and along a ridge with classic terraced farmland on either side to the regions oldest Temple – Changu Narayan. We drive back from here to Kathmandu, stopping en-route at two of the cities most important, and contrasting religious pilgrimage sites - Pasupatinath temple (Hindu) and Boudhanath stupa (Buddhist). The evening is free for you to explore Kathmandu and Thamel one last time and enjoy a farewell meal together.
OvernightKathmandu - 3 star hotelMealsBreakfast
Day 15 Kathmandu. Free time. Transfer to airport
You have some free time in Kathmandu today until we transfer you to the airport for departure. Extensions to the tour are available to add more trekking, white water rafting or to visit Bardia National Park (the best place in Nepal to see tigers). First thing this morning there is also another option to take a spectacular mountain viewing flight up to see Mt. Everest (requires an evening international flight departure).
OvernightN/AMealsBreakfastExtrasExtra day - post-tour, Everest Mountain Flight, Bardia National Park Extension
View Tour Dossier   
  • All accommodation as stated in the itinerary
  • Private car, minivan or minibus subject to gropu size
  • All transfers, including 24-hour airport arrival & departure transfer service
  • Tourist bus from Pokhara to Kathmandu
  • Services of a local escort throughout the tour
  • Specialist city guides and wildlife safari guides in Kathmandu, Bhakatpur and Chitwan.
  • Trekking guide
  • Trekking porters (provided with clothing, footwear and accommodation as per IPPG recommendations).
  • All national park entry and activity fees
  • Meals as indicated in the itinerary
  • All entrance fees to sites visited in the itinerary
  • International flights (available on request)
  • Visa fees (available on arrival for most nationalities)
  • Travel insurance (compulsory, available on request)
  • Meals not indicated in the itinerary (budget around US$60 for lunches & dinners on the trek)
  • Drinks, snacks and other personal expenses (eg. laundry)
  • Tips for tour leader, guides and porters
  • Any other items not mentioned above