- What is the best way to greet the locals in Nepal?
The best way to greet locals in Nepal is to join your palms at your chest level and say “Namaste” with a smile in your face. Its the best way to show true respect to any Nepali people.
- What sort of dresses do I have to bring during my visit to Nepal?
Normally, Nepal has a very pleasant weather. However, your timing to visit Nepal, your purpose and your places of interest determine the clothing and accessories you carry along. If you’re here during winter (October to January) or if you are planning to trek to Himalayan region anytime of the year do bring some warm jackets, sweaters, trousers, shoes, glasses and caps. At other times you can travel light with few light jackets, T-shirts, trousers etc. It’s better if you carry your basic necessities like glasses, creams, caps or hats whenever you travel.
- What are DOs and DON’Ts in Nepal?
- Public display of affection is often offensive and is taken as vulgar act in Nepal. Especially, do not kiss in public. However, the healthy hugs are considered okay; still the tight cuddles sometimes demonstrate the sensual feelings and we strongly advice not to do this in public places.
- Female visitors ought to be conscious about dresses in Nepal. It is not advised to travel in skimpy, skinny and revealing outfits.
- Do not ask for the beef while you are in Nepali restaurants or houses. Cow is a sacred animal for entire Hindus in Nepal. Other communities also normally do not eat beef.
- Do not urge your guide or any Nepali to eat from your plate or do not eat from theirs as well, this is considered as an improper etiquette in Nepal.
- Do not encourage the beggars by being benevolent and giving money to the long queue of beggars at some places. You can help these people by donating to the organizations that are concerned in helping such peoples.
- What are the local customs and culture that I need to be aware of?
While entering the houses, temples and monasteries in Nepal, please make sure you have your shoes off. In temples even the leather items are prohibited. Some of the temples in Nepal do not allow the people of other religions. So, make sure you get the permission before you enter these temples and monasteries. Do not try to take the photographs in strictly prohibited places hiding it from the officials; it may cost you your camera or some financial penalty. Please ask before you take the pictures.
- Where and how do I exchange my money into Nepali rupee?
You have got a lot of money ex-changers in many places especially in tourist areas like Thamel, Boudha etc. In addition, hotels and banks also provide the service. So you can go to any of these places for money exchange. However, money exchange service is very rare in the rural areas. So, it’s sensible to exchange while you are in cities.
- Can I use my credit card?
Yes, you can use your credit card. But they are not used throughout Nepal. In major cities like Kathmandu, Pokhara etc also, credit cards are accepted in major stores, restaurants, hotels and travel agencies only. Paying by cash is more comfortable than by Credit Card.
- Are there ATM machines in Nepal?
There are ATM machines in major cities like Kathmandu and Pokhara. However, as all international bank cards are not accepted in Nepal its advisable to make sure with your bank if your card is accepted in Nepal or not.
- What inoculations are advised?
Before travelling to Nepal, it is highly recommended to consult your doctor for vaccination requirements. You can also visit the link for information on the vaccination requirements. http://ciwec-clinic.com/health-information/immunizations-recommended-for-travel-in-nepal/
- Do I suffer from Altitude Sickness in Nepal?
Trekkers can suffer from Altitude Sickness from 2400m (8000ft) and higher, or even from lower in some cases. But, acute mountain sickness can be traced from 3000 m (10,000 ft) and above. The chances of altitude sickness are low while travelling in Nepal as the itineraries are customized in such a way that they give enough room for proper acclimatization. However, one needs to be on guard and take all the necessary precautions while travelling.
- Do I need a travel insurance?
Yes. If you are travelling to Nepal, choose a travel insurance that covers theft, loss, medical problems and emergency repatriation, including helicopter evacuation for trekkers.
- What is done in emergency cases?
In case of emergency, the one and only priority of the company is to evacuate the traveler from the place and rush to the hospital as earliest as possible. In most of the cases, rescue and evacuation in done by helicopter. So, for this purpose traveler needs to have the insurance that covers rescue and evacuation by helicopter.
- What is the weather in Nepal like?
Spring (mid-March to mid-May) is the most attractive season throughout Nepal. Especially hilly regions offer the most spectacular sight to behold because of the overladen rhododendrons. During the season, there is occasional shower and wind; and the heat starts building up gradually. The heat that has started to increase, continue to increase throughout Summer (mid-May to mid-July) making it the hottest season of all. During this time, farmers start cultivation. The heat recedes only after the advent of monsoon or rainy season. Monsoon season (mid-July to mid-September) is particularly important for farming country like Nepal. There will be extensive wet days, which give life giving rain for farmers. The farms are laden with industrious farmers, busy in farming. During this time extra lustrous farms and hills provide a delightful spectacle for anyone. Weather starts getting drier as Autumn (mid-September to mid-November) starts. The season is known for pleasant weather, clear skies and festivities as the country’s two major festivals Dashawn and Tihar fall during this season. With the advent of pre winter season, temperature starts decreasing and skies start getting greyer. The temperature continues to decrease till February and remain constant till March. Though, mornings and evenings are cold, days are milder during this time. However, the mountainous region receives snowfall and chilling weather.
- Is shower facility available along the trek?
Most of lodges provide shower facilities for some extra charge.
- Can I charge my digital camera or other batteries on my trip?
Yes. All lodges and teahouses in major trekking areas provide phone and camera charging facilities for some extra charging fee. While in camping trips or base camps, you can charge from solar panel or an inverter charged from solar energy.
- What should I do in emergency cases?
If you find yourself in any sort of trouble or discomfort, please dial 100 for the immediate police assistance or your concerned travel agent immediately. It’s a better idea to leave your local number or any other local details (if any) to your travel agent.
- What activities can be done in Nepal?
Nepal offers activities ranging from extreme mountaineering to leisurely city tours. Some of the popular activities are mountaineering, trekking, cultural tours, jungle safari, bird watching, skydiving, rafting, kayaking, canyoning, mountain biking, mountain flight, zip flying, paragliding, yoga and meditation, hiking, photography tours etc.
- What type of food is served during a trek?
In popular trekking trails like Everest and Annapurna, teahouses and lodges serve local food, especially “Dhal Bhat”, which is steamed rice, curry, lentil soup etc; and continental food like pasta, noodles, pizza, bread, soups, fresh vegetables and even some desserts like apple pies, pancakes etc. You can also get hot drinks like hot chocolate, tea, hot lemon drinks, as well as soft drinks. You can also get crisps and chocolates. However, you wont get a wide range of choices as in the cities. As you go higher, choice will be very limited. You can also get alcoholic drinks but its not recommended in altitudes. In less frequented areas/remote areas, food will be local and basic.
- How to get safe drinking water on the trek?
You can buy bottled drinking water in popular trekking areas. In such areas, villages also have purified water stations where you can fill your bottles for some charge. In remote areas where bottled water is not available, water filters and water purification tablets are needed. On a tented camping trek, you will be provided boiled water by the staff.
- How fit do I need to be to trek in the Himalayas?
Trekking in Himalayas requires the same fitness level as any other outdoor activity depending upon the age. However, since you are required to walk 6/7 hours a day in higher altitude, its better to do some forms of exercises like walking, jogging, cycling, hiking etc that help in building stamina prior to a month or two.
- Do you provide any equipment while trekking?
All trekking in Nepal will follow trails that are used by locals. So, you will not need any climbing equipment such as ropes, ice axe, or crampons. You just need your personal gears like duffle bag or kit bag, daypack, sunglasses, snow glasses, sleeping bags, walking pole (optional), walking boots/shoes etc. Most of these items are available in rent or sale in Kathmandu. You can get a full equipment checklist from your travel agent.
- What type of ground transportation is used in the tours?
For ground transportation, we use all types of vehicles from two-seater car to tourist coach or coaster depending on the size of the group. Two-seater car is used for 1-2 persons, micro luxury 6-seater van for 3-5 persons, 10 seater van for 6-9 persons and tourist coach or coaster for group size above 10 persons. All the vehicles are fairly comfortable and safe for such kind of operations. For off road travel, we use 4WD land cruisers.
- How much amount is appropriate for tipping?
Tipping is not compulsory but appreciated. So it’s a good idea to reward your porters, drivers, guides, climbing Sherpas etc at the end of the service. You can allocate approximately 10% of your total trip cost as tips. However, its entirely personal and depends on your budget.
- What is the best time for trekking?
Generally Spring (mid-March to mid-May) and Autumn (mid-September to mid-November) are considered as the best time for trekking in Nepal. Both seasons are dry and milder. During Spring hills are laden with rhododendrons and offer you a mesmerizing spectacle. Autumn is marked with exceptional clarity (visibility) and festivities in hills and Kathmandu valley. However, trekking in rain shadow areas like Mustang, Manang and Dolpo is possible during rainy season also (approximately from late June to mid-September). City tours are possible throughout the year.
- Is it possible to change the lodge if it is not in order?
Changing lodges and hotels is possible. However, during peak seasons when the availability is very less and the rooms/spaces are fully booked, it will be difficult to change.
- Can we change the itinerary?
Itineraries are always open to customization as per your interests, timeframe and requirements before you book a trip. Once the trip starts, changing the actual itinerary depends on the situations. You can improvise it to some extent after consulting your guide. In some situations, some unforeseen conditions compel us to change the itinerary. In such situations, we will provide you the best alternative similar to the original plan.
- What kind of luggage should I bring?
If you are going on a trek, duffle bag and rucksack are the best. However, you can also bring suitcase, which you can keep at the hotel with the things you don’t need during trek. In that case, you have to either buy a duffle bag or bring one from home for you trek.
- Is Internet access available while trekking?
Internet access is available in popular trekking regions in Everest and Annapurna. You can also purchase wireless modem such as NCELL for your notebook and you will be able to use it in many areas including many places along the trek to the Everest Base Camp. At some lodges, certain amount is charged for the service but most of hotels offer free wifi.
- Are there communication facilities available while we trekking?
Yes, many lodges and teahouses have facility for national and international calls. Or you can also buy local mobile networks. They have coverage in many areas of Nepal. Moreover, satellite phone coverage is also available within Nepal.
- How much additional money do I need per day?
It depends on the type of the trip you have booked. If your trip type is full-board, it comes with all meals which obviously reduces your per day expense considerably. You will need approximately $10 per day to buy bottled water, snacks, coffee etc. If you have to pay for the meal by yourself, you can separate the budget of approximately $ 7-10 per meal. While you are on the trek, the prices are higher. So, around $500 for the whole trek can be modest for your personal expenses in higher altitude.