The TravelPod Nepali Starter KitBlogs
| | Photos
| MoreNepal, home of the highest mountains in the world. Trekking amongst them is magnificent, and everyday is a brand new adventure. Be it walking with elephants in Chitwan, taking a flight over Everest or just hanging out at the Buddhist temples, Nepal will touch your heart and you will want to go backThis starter kit isnít meant to replace a guide book. Itís a collection of top tips and frequently asked questions about the region. If you are headed to Nepal, make sure to have a glance.
Contribute if you can by replying to this post!Tips and Frequently Asked QuestionsDress Sense
Nepal is a country of extremes. Down in Kathmandu it can be hot, walking around in t-shirts and shorts are the norm, but then whilst trekking, a sudden snowstorm can hit so you need clothes for all extremes. Blogging
In Kathmandu, there are internet cafes everywhere. Pokhara is similar but pricier and Chitwan is the same but more expensive. If you do need to go on the internet whilst trekking, be prepared to pay big money. Most computers at Internet cafťís have USB ports which you can use to upload photos from your camera to your blog. The majority of PCís are running Windows XP, so there is no problem either uploading your photos or burning them onto a CD.
Taking a laptop is not a challenge, the people are very trustworthy and friendly and a lot of cafes are now set up to let you plug your laptop into their network
Keep notes in your paper journal then write your entries when you get to a cafť.
If you would like to write your entries outside of a cafť, consider getting a small and sturdy PDA (handheld PC) or the like with a fold out keyboard.Security
Kathmandu can be a little dangerous sometimes. Never venture into the paths of rioters. As the country can be unstable, be prepared for the cities to be placed under curfew.
Keep your passport and valuables in a hidden money belt and never take it out when outside.
Walk with assurance, donít look lost, even if you are.
When arriving in a new city from your home country, try to book your first nightís stay before you arrive.
Donít draw attention to yourself, hide all of your expensive goodies.
Remove or obscure big name labels on bags and cameras.
If your day pack has a rain cover, use it when in cramped spaces to keep quick hands from opening zips.
Travel Insurance is a good idea and is generally cheap, make sure that it covers the types of activities you plan to do. TravelPod offers Adventure Travel Insurance
You will need a visa to enter the country. Visas are easily enough bought on the border with USD notes. The visa is valid for 60 days. Once the visa has run out, if you need more time, simply exit the country and re-enter. Nepal will then give you and extra 30 days for freeNepali SightsKathmanduTravel Blogs
| Photos & Videos
Kathmandu. The name conjures up an exotic location. A city full of Hindu and Buddhist temples Bodhnath
. There is also Durbar Square in the old part. Five kilometers away is the old city of Pathan which has another Durbar Square, and just to make up the set, catch a bus to Bhaktapur, to see another Durbar Square. Bhaktapur Temple
| Photos & Videos
The base for trekking the Annapurna Circuit or for the Annapurna Sanctuary walk. There are some nice practice walks into the hills. Close by is the Japanese Peace Pagoda. Lovely views over the lake and on a clear day, Machhapuchhare
can be seen. Trekking EverestTravel Blogs
| Photos & Videos
The Everest Trek is the name given to the 170 Kilometre trek from Jiri, in the Solu region through to the Khumbu valley below Everest. If you want to see Everest, this is the trek for you. If you do not feel inclined to use a guide, check out Yeti Zones
fact sheets for the Everest Trek. Before entering the park, you will need to pay a trekking fee.Trekking the AnnapurnasTravel Blogs
| Photos & Videos
There are either one or two treks here. Traditionally, the Annapurna Circuit, is a circuit around the Himalayan range. There is also a shorter trek, the Annapurna Sanctuary trek. They can be combined to make one huge trek. If you do not wish to hire a guide or porter, check out [http://www.yetizone.com/Annapurna/Trek/Annapurna_Trek.shtml]Yeti Zones[/url] fact sheets for the Annapurna Treks. Before entering the park, you will need to pay a trekking feeLangtang and Helambu TrekTravel Blogs
Two different treks that can be combined as one. Much lower than the previous two. Not as many people do this trek, so if you want solitude, this is the one for you. For more information, check out [http://www.yetizone.com/Langtang/Trek/langtang_trek.shtml]Yeti Zones[/url] fact sheets for this trek ChitwanTravel Blogs
| Photos & Videos
Chitwan Royal National Park. If you want to see animals, this is the place to be. Both Snub and long nose crocodiles inhabit the rivers. There are also Rhinos and Tigers. Every December is the International Elephant races! There are treks, canoe trips, elephant treks and jeep rides into the park Dangers and Annoyances
There is a good chance that when you are trekking, you will run into the Maoists. They normally ask for a donation. Generally, they will charge you 100 Rupees for each day of trekking. They will issue you with a receipt, which you then show other Maoists if you meet them along the track. Is this a bribe? Well, they believe that you should not pay the park entry fee as it is going into the Kingís pockets, and that they should get the money. Some people manage not to pay, my thoughts are to try and negotiate. Keep a level head, and who knows, you could get a discount!
In both Kathmandu and Pokhara, you will be offered drugs. There is nothing you can do except to ignore them. Health
Malaria can be a problem malaria facts
for more accurate info and if in doubt, take the meds.
Never drink the local water. On the treks, either buy bottled water or buy the filtered water on the track. Do take chlorine tablets if you are worried.
It is a case of when you get sick, not if you get sick.
Giardia is rampant. If you start doing eggy burps, you know you have it. There is a simple medication which will kill the parasite. It is sold everywhere in both Kathmandu and Pokhara
If you have bad diarrhea, avoid Imodium at all costs unless you absolutely need to travel somewhere that day. Imodium keeps your sickness trapped inside and can make you sicker.
If you do become sick, keep your fluids upTravelBuses
The buses are all old Tatas from India. The roads go all over the mountains, you will not travel fast. If you do need to get places in a hurry, pay the extra and go for a minivanLocal Transport
When in Kathmandu, there is a variety of transport that will take you everywhere. Minibuses, three wheelers and taxis. If you need to get anywhere, most larger street corners are where the local transport congregates. It is cheap and the best way to get aroundFood
In Nepal, the food is influenced mainly by India with a bit of Tibet thrown in. If you like curries and mo-mos, you will be happy, but if Western fare is what you need, then you will be fed. In Kathmandu, practically every fourth shop is a baker. Go after 20:00 for half price cakes! When trekking, Dahl Baht. You will get sick of this!Drinks
Chai is sold on every street corner. There is also Everest beer if you like a drop. Money
The official currency is the Nepali Rupee. Changing money is easy. There are banks that take cards, you can change travelers cheques very easily, but if you are trekking, take all the money you need as you will not be able to change money. If you do run out in the major towns, you can use Indian Rupees. The exchange rate is 1.6 NR to 1 IR.Language
Nepali is the official language, but English is widely spokenHere are the basics:
Hello/ Goodbye / Namaste
Please (give me) / Dinuhos
Please (you have) / Khanuhos
Yes / Cha
No / Chhaina
Thank you / Dhanyabad
Where / Kaha
Here / Yaha
Do you speak English / Tapai angreji bolna saknu hunchha
1 / Ek
2 / Dui
3 / Teen
4 / Char
5 / Panch
6 / Chha
7 / Saht
8 / Ath
9 / Nan
10 / DasReligion
Nepal is mainly a mixture of Buddhists, Hindus and the odd Muslim. If you are into people watching, there are many Tibetans in their traditional dressIf you found this useful, once you return from your trip please take the time to help by contributing to the FAQ and also by replying to posts.And Finally
Recently, there has been a bit of trouble in Nepal. The local people are not happy with their King, the Maoists are not happy with the Government, and the Government are not happy with the other two. Riots can take place at a blink of an eye, but steering aside of these problems, the trekking is superb and the friendliness of the people is amazing. Do not let the troubles put you off. Get into the mountains and see the amazing beauty of the Himalayas