going Kathmandu (p27) - a walk to remember

#tips updated as of 25 Jan 2014


ah. i know. i thought i was done with Nepal. but i just feel that i gotta give the trip a final wrap. a well deserved conclusion. perhaps, because this is my ultimate trip for the year of 2013, other than my riding in cars with roslans (goes 2nd) in WA. 

honestly, more than year ago, i never thought that i'd walked on the footprints here. i was just back from my long overland trip covering east java and bali for the 2nd time (3rd time for bromo and bali) early November of 2012, and saw the latest catalogue of camel active on my office table. somebody probably left it. the fall/winter collection of the year was shot in Nepal, and it caught my attention very much.




by that time, i never tried to push my boundary on travelling to 'exotic' country like Nepal. the closest that i had was Thailand and Cambodia, where you gotta to deal with the language barrier etc. i made a note on my instagram back then, quoting that it'd be my next destination.

#semua orang excited and reply nak ikoooot.....but bile time nk pegi...hehe...

and by that time, i was also bitten by the hiking-trekking bug, despite the fact that i was late already. i mean i was like beyond my 'golden' year to do such adventurous activities, but i did my kinabalu hike that year (2012), and made another attempt at Ijen later. so it seemed i gotta to keep the momentum! and knowing Nepal as the gate to the himalayas, and admiring the breathtaking pictures of jomson-muktinath trail on the catalogue, led me to put Nepal on my wish list for 2013.

it took me a while to study and then to decide on the trip. my early ultimate sources were azuan's and udey's experiences. udey's experiences - doing the ABC and Langtang Valley circuits, plus his fantastic videos and pictures, drawn me to wonder - this is something different for me to experience. and azuan's survival stories (eheh!), motivated me...

 ' i don't have to be a mountaineer to experience himalayas'. hehe

the ball kept rolling. after months of planning, training etc. and even invested on rm3k Tessar etc. the day came, and we flew to land known as 'Roof of The World'.


thousand miles away
thousand pictures to speak the thousand words (literally)
26 chapters of ramblings...

my itinerary summary as below:

day 1 - departure. arrived Kathmandu.
           greeted by Basu, airport transfer to Thamel.
           met Puru the sivaji, package briefing and settle payment
           free and easy night

day 2 - left to airport. flew to Pokhara via Yeti Air
          greeted by Durga and the cold taxi driver with his midget taxi
          went to tourist centre to settle trekking permit
          half day pokhara tour - davis fall & tibetan refugee camp
          pokhara lake boating on own
          free and easy night

day 3 - left for Nayapul
           trekking from Nayapul to Tikhedhunga

day 4 - trekking from Tikhedhunga to Ghorepani (via Ulleri)

day 5 - sunrise trekking to Poon Hill, witnessing the twelve peaks of annapurna rose from the dark
           trekking from Ghorepani to Ghandruk (via Tadapani)

day 6 - short trekking from Ghandrul and take a bus to Nayapul
           back to Pokhara
           free and easy in Pokhara

day 7 - flew back to Kathmandu
           greeted by Mr G - half day tour - P-Temple and Boudhanath
           kathmandu Durbar Square visit on own
           free and easy night in Thamel

day 8 - free and easy morning in Thamel
            airport transfer
            flew back to tanahairku

the cost

  1. AAX flight + food + luggage + seat = rm950
  2. Parking keta = rm64 (rm128/2)
  3. 15 days visit visa = usd25
  4. 8d7n package = usd310 per person (BLD during trekking)
  5. Return flight Pokhara-Kathmandu = usd200
  6. Additional expenditure (food, entrance fee,bus, drinks etc.) = 7404 rupee (rm250)
  7. Shopping etc. sendiri2 laaa..
  8. Total estimated  = RM3000
i hope the summary above will help to give you the rough estimation. details? probably gotta read my 26 chapters of rambling. hehe.

some asked about not doing the long trekking etc. but still want to cover the best of Nepal, and with my limited knowledge, i can recommend the itinerary below.

day 1 - arrived. thamel free and easy.
day 2 - fly or bus ride to Pokhara. free and easy pokhara
day 3 - sunrise (short hike) at sarangkot, and day tour of Pokhara (can add 1 more day)
day 4 - back to Kathmandu (fly or bus ride)
day 5 - kathmandu day tour - visit all 3 durbar squares, unescos (can add 1 more day)
day 6 - back home

TIPS (will update more when i recall more):
  • do visa in KL to avoid the drama and headache (read my arrival entry)
  • avoid diwali period...
  • most transactions done in nepalese rupee, malaysian ringgit are widely accepted at money changers here. thamel's money changers offer better rate.  (change small amount of money for taxi when arriving at the airport, and do the rest in Thamel)
  • enough to learn just 'namaste'. more than that, people mistakenly thought you as locals, and treat you as locals. don't worry english is widely understandable here.
  • trekking gear n clothes can be bought here if you have ample time to scout around, cheaper and a lot of choices
  • tour guides (recommended in trip advisor). i email these four companies and communicated with them via lots lots of emails.
  • domestic airport tax - 200 rupee (pokhara)

from our room, Thamel

when i came back, people were surprised to know that i went to Nepal. never in their mind to have it as a holiday destination. i don't blame them, because all the while Nepal to me was known to me as - negara pak guard, and gate to himalaya.

'best tak?'
'will you go back?'

if you can read me all this while, you may understand why i will take a moment to answer such questions. i had too much dramas, and it started even before we left tanahairku. but then again, all the dramas made the trip such an 'adventure' of its own.

whenever i decided to walk on the footprints, i love to seek and embrace the nature, the culture/people and the heritage of the place (in order), and for that reason, Nepal charmed me in many ways because of the breathtaking nature landscape it offers. 

honestly, despite 'hunting' unesco sites is among my to-do list when travelling, somehow, i didn't get the same vibe when visiting the sites in kathmandu. probably, because of i lost my glasses, hence my judgement all become shady; as shady as my sunglasses.

the people. well..there was so much things to ramble. i had bad experience with the people there. but it made me realized, how much i missed tanahairku and tanah nusantara.

i feel a bit disappointed as due to my short visit wandering around kathmandu, i didn't have much chance to visit the mosque/muslim community areas etc. there. it was just that, going to country where muslims are minority, and meeting them, always sparks a special bond among us, and grateful for living in a muslim country like tanahairku. even i had bad time with the kashmiri brothers when shopping at their shop, but that was quite a moment.


anyway, challenging myself to do the almost 40km of trekking and hiking, and seeing the twelve (12) peaks of annapurna-dhaulagiri range...ah...make me feel humble. as i quoted (mimicking what karl pilkington said)

i am the ugly person, looking at the beautiful and breathtaking Allah's creation, from the tiny cave hole..and it did feel a better deal.

'will i go back?'

definitely for the mountains ...

Comments

  1. agip !!

    thank you very much !!

    aku akan follow mana yang perlu. now tak prepare hapa pun lagik.

    ReplyDelete
  2. meng. welkam. hope bole la membantu walau x seberapa info neh..hehe.

    part tips tu aku akan update time to time, if aku ingat apa yg perlu

    ReplyDelete
  3. Best best besstttt! :)

    Thanks sebab bagi racun takde penawar kat kami semua. Haha

    ReplyDelete
  4. agip.. kasik website utk tour package tu

    nak riki

    ReplyDelete
  5. khai - thanks for reading. u'll survive! hehe.

    meng - dah update. refer kat bahagian tips. okeh

    ReplyDelete
  6. kalau 2 org perempuan pegi. rasanya selamay x kat sana?

    ReplyDelete
  7. AiNa. InsyaAllah. selamat. sbb masa saya pegi hari tu..i even met a chinese lady from msia, travelling alone..and even pegi trekking 5h4n..with her only guide+porter.

    my friend, a lady also went there with her friend end of 2012.

    ReplyDelete
  8. dapat sijil eh kalo complete trekking?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. yeap..kitaorg dapat dr tour company kitaorg. tadela official from nepal trekking authority ke apa..but from the tour company

      Delete
  9. Replies
    1. ok jard. berbesar hati nak jawab soalan2 ko. senang aku jawab kat sini terus semua.

      1. aku tak pegi sampai ABC...cuma trail aku tu which is known as gorepani-poon hill trek adelah part of the trail nak pegi ABC. aku x dpt cuti lelama nk pegi ABC. hehe...apapun all the best to korang. you can do it. Insya Allah...pada aku trail annapurna neh or anything kat nepal neh..more towards endurance...maknanya..lama and panjang..hehe..yg mencabar ke ape tade sgt kot sbb...nepal kan dh well known trek...unless ko buat peak hiking ke ape. aku rasa paling azab aku lalui adelah masa hiking 'stairs of ulleri' and last leg..bile aku terpaksa ikut pace guide aku utk cover twice the distance aku trek the day before.

      2. beg ...aku bawak satu beg yg dalam 40L kot rasanya...brand High Sierra.and satu beg kamera+supplies+food+drink. tapi sebab aku cam diva sket..aku amik both guide and porter...so aku just carry beg kamera jer all the way. hehe..tanak paksa diri..sbb aku pun hardcore trekker nk angkut 8-10kg backpack. aku recommend la kalo korang ade bajet lebih..amik porter la..sbb kurang penat sket..and banyak menda ko nk enjoy throughout the trail...hehe

      okeh...aku rasa ko prolly bole dapat tips lagi berguna dr group korang yg dh biasa hiking. tapi aku bole kasi personal view aku sbg non-hardcore trekker...training tu penting...and gunung datuk tu is a good attempt...pastu kalau bole tryla jogging etc..sebab nk stamina and also breathing...nanti kat sana senang kena symptom sickness tu.

      okeh...keep us posted. lame dah tgk blog ko bersawang. hahaha.

      Delete

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