Immerse yourself in the spectacular mountain world of the Himalayas! Enjoy a fascinating blend of stunning nature and incredible UNESCO World Heritage sites in the former kingdom of Nepal. Marvel at temples and palaces in the royal cities. And keep an eye out for Bengal tigers, elephants, leopards and dolphins in the Chitwan National Park.
Day 1 + 2: Arrival in Kathmandu
Flight to Kathmandu and arrival on day 2. Our friendly and competent English-speaking tour guide will meet us at the airport and take us to our modern touring coach. We drive to our comfortable hotel where we will spend the first 2 nights. The rest of the day you have time to start exploring Nepal‘s capital of Kathmandu.
Day 3: Bungamati, Khokana & Boudhanath (UNESCO World Heritage)
After a restful breakfast, we make our way to Bungamati and Khokana. Both places were founded in the 16th century and above all impress with their wonderful monuments and ancient temples. Traditional houses and the medieval culture will captivate you while we stroll through the streets of Bungamati. Here we can see dozens of wood carvers and sculptors at work. Both temples of Karyabinyak and Manakamana survived the earthquake almost unscathed a few years ago and shine in their full splendour. Khokana is a small Newari village, which is known for its mustard oil and the impressive temple. The temple is dedicated to the goddess Rudrayani. In addition, we will see the beautiful lotus pond “Kamal Pokhari” here and the fascinating reflecting pond “Aina Pokhari”. Then we will continue to Boudhanath. There we will be elated about one of the largest spherical temples (stupas) in the country, probably one of the largest in the world. It is rightly a UNESCO World Heritage site with its 50 monasteries and is part of the Kathmandu Valley.
Day 4 – 5: Chitwan National Park (UNESCO World Heritage), Nepalese evening & elephant safari
On the 4th day, our adventure begins in Chitwan National Park, which has been a UNESCO World Natural Heritage site since 1984 (admission included). The park is home to countless animal species. These also include endangered species, such as the Indian rhinoceros and the Bengalese tiger, wild elephants, leopards, sloth bears, various species of monkey, wild dogs and wild cats. In addition, the park offers the perfect habitat for swamp mugger crocodiles, cobras and pythons. Part of the Narayani River is home to one of four species of freshwater dolphin. Later we will experience a traditional Nepalese evening with dinner and a magical show by the Tharu people. We will spend this and the next night in a comfortable hotel in the national park. In the morning, the Chitwan National Park awaits us again. Already before breakfast we will start an exciting trek through the jungle. After some fortification at breakfast, we will continue our walk through the breathtaking landscapes. We will observe different birds and animal species along the river bank. In the evening, we will enjoy another dinner together. Here in the national park, you also have the unique option to take part in an elephant safari. Discover the jungle and its inhabitants in an unforgettable way on the back of one of its “mahout”-guided elephants.
Day 6: Pokhara & the Himalayas
In the morning, we will drive to Pokhara, the third-largest city in Nepal. It is located in the middle of the majestic Himalayas and is surrounded by 3 of the highest peaks in the world. They rise more than 8,000 metres into the sky. Discover the city in the afternoon on your own. The next 2 nights will be spent in the Pokhara area.
Day 7: Peace Pagoda, boat trip on Phewa Lake & International Mountain Museum
Today we will go to the Peace Pagoda (admission included) in time to see the sunrise. The world-famous Buddhist temple is located on a hill and can be reached via stairs. From on top here, we will enjoy a breathtaking view of Phewa Lake and the city of Pokhara. We will then walk down to Phewa Lake to cross it by boat. In the afternoon, you can take part in an interesting optional visit to the International Mountain Museum. Here you will learn all you need to know about the Himalayas and the first mountaineers to reach the summit of Mount Everest.
Day 8 – 9: Nagarkot & Bhaktapur (UNESCO World Heritage)
After a fantastic sunrise in Nagarkot with a view of the mighty mountain scenery of the Himalayas, we will drive to Bhaktapur, the best-preserved of the 3 royal cities. Here, we will discover some of the most impressive religious buildings in the country. Narrow cobbled streets meander past red brick houses leading to hidden temples and courtyards. We see the royal square (admission included), which is part of the Kathmandu Valley and also a UNESCO World Heritage site. On the streets we can watch craftsmen at their crafts of weaving, pottery and carving. Among the main attractions of this city are the 55 Window Palace, the Lion‘s Gate, the Mini Pashupati temple, the Nyatapola temple and the Bhairav Nath temple. Some temples were damaged by the earthquake and are under reconstruction. Overnight stay in the Kathmandu area.
Day 10: Day of discovery – Kathmandu, Swayambhunath & Patan (UNESCO World Heritage)
Today 3 of Nepal’s highlights await you with Kathmandu, Swayambunath and Patan. We would love to take you with us on this fantastic optional all-day excursion. It starts at the royal square in the heart of Kathmandu. In the southern part there is a former royal elephant stable as well as the temple of the living goddess Kumari – a famous incarnation of the Hindu goddess Taleju. A young girl was chosen for this and is worshipped as a “living goddess“. You can also see traces of the earthquake here. Afterwards we will experience the temple complex of Swayambhunath. This oldest of all holy shrines in the Kathmandu Valley is also known as the Monkey Temple. The ancient white-golden dome rises majestically above the valley. We then continue on to Patan. The royal city inspires with a large number of Buddhist and Hindu temples as well as more than 1,000 monuments decorated with wood and stone carvings. Here you can see one of the main courtyards “Sundari Chowk“, the royal bath “Tushahity“ and the Krishna temple. You will also visit the Golden Temple and the Mahaboudha Temple. The royal sites of Kathmandu and Patan as well as Swayambhunath are part of the Kathmandu Valley and therefore a UNESCO World Heritage site. After an exciting day, you will drive back to your hotel in the Kathmandu area.
Day 11: Homeward journey
Today, we say farewell. A fantastic and eventful trip comes to an end, and new holiday friendships have been formed. We fly back to England happy.
Special services included for you
- Scheduled flight to Kathmandu and back with Turkish Airlines (Best European airline 2011 – 2016)³,
incl. hotel transfers and airport fees
- 9 nights in a double room in selected comfortable hotels
9× tasty breakfast
- Fascinating cultural tour in our modern travel coach discovering Nepal‘s most famous highlights! Look forward to a spectacular range of excursions, including 3 visits to UNESCO World Heritage sites:
• Boudhanath (World Heritage)
• Chitwan National Park (World Heritage)
• Bhaktapur (World Heritage)
• Karyabinyak temple
• Manakamana temple
• Nepalese evening
• The Himalayas
• Peace Pagoda
• Boat trip on Phewa Lake
• Mini Pashupati temple
• Nyatapola temple
• Bhairav Nath temple
• 55 Window Palace
- Qualified, English-speaking study tour guide
3 Scheduled flight with Turkish Airlines (Best European Airline 2011 – 2016 according to the Sky Trax World Airline Award) with change in Istanbul to Kathmandu and back.
On request, you can book our additional tours and services at special prices:
The package includes half-board with delicious dinners, including 1× dinner with an Everest sherpa in Kathmandu and 1× traditional dinner in Kathmandu with a folklore show: only £159 per person
The package includes the “Elephant safari in Chitwan National Park” as well as admission to the International Mountain Museum in Pokhara and the all-day excursion “Kathmandu, Swayambhunath & Patan (World Heritage)”: only £139 per person
Single room surcharge: £349 per person (subject to availability)
Including a spectacular range of excursions featuring Nepal‘s 12 most famous highlights!
“Just great! A super friendly tour guide with excellent specialised knowledge, the best organisation, great attractions and very good hotels!”
Paul Otto G., holidaymaker, 19 June 2018²
“A wonderful trip with lots of happy moments and incredible impressions!“
Ursula S., holidaymaker, 08 June 2018²
² RSD Travel Ltd. and RSD Reise Service Deutschland GmbH belong to a European group of tour operators that organises tours for customers from a number of European countries. The survey focused on tourists who travelled with RSD in 2018 / 2019. These comments were made by customers who have travelled with our group of companies.
Comparison of temperatures
Nepal is a land-locked state in South Asia, bordered to the north by China and to the East, South and West by India.
Form of government:
A democratic republic (since 28 May, 2008), the head of state is President Bidya Devi Bhandari (since 28 October, 2015)
Kathmandu (1.7 million inhabitants)
Approx. 80% Hindus, 9% Buddhists, 4% Muslims, 1.4% Christians; there is a ban on missionary work
Nepalese is the official national language; there are also around 50 minority languages or dialects spoken; English is understood and spoken almost everywhere
Monsoon climate, more temperate in the north thanks to the elevation. Winters are moderate (0° to 20°C), high rainfall in the summer (monsoon period June to October, 25° to 32°C)
220 V, 50 Hz; an adapter is recommended.
Nepal has no summer / winter clock changes. The time difference from England is +4.45 hours in summer and +5.45 hours in winter.
The prefix for calls from England to Nepal is 00977. For telephone calls to England, dial 0044 first. Omit the first 0 of the area code.
Entry requirements for British citizens:
You will need a visa to travel to Nepal. Your passport must be valid for at least 6 months when you submit your application for a visa.
To apply for a visa in the United Kingdom you should contact the Embassy of Nepal. Visas are available on arrival at Tribhuvan International Airport and at some land borders. To obtain a visa upon arrival by air in Nepal you must fill in an application form on arrival and provide a passport photograph. A single-entry visa valid for 15, 30 or 90 days costs US$25, 40 or 100. At Kathmandu’s Tribhuvan Airport the fee is payable in any major currency (some land crossings insist on payment in US dollars). A Nepali visa is valid for entry for three to six months from the date of issue.
You must have a valid visa in your passport to leave Nepal. If your visa has expired you will have to arrange an extension at the Department of Immigration, before your departure.
Overstaying without authority is serious. Foreign nationals who overstay in Nepal without a valid visa are subject to (i) a fine of up to 50,000 Nepali Rupees, and/or (ii) deportation from Nepal.
Approval of the Ministry of Home Affairs is required for deportation, which could be a lengthy process. The immigration office may take the foreign national in its custody (detain) until the decision is made by the Ministry of Home Affairs. For more information, please contact Nepal Immigration.
In England, visas can also be requested from the Nepalese embassy in London and picked up on the same day. Applications can also be submitted by post. Please read carefully which documents you need to submit for this and expect a turnaround time of around one week (within the UK). In your own interests, we recommend checking the entry requirements before you start your journey.
Legal information and/or information outside the scope of these notes regarding entry requirements can only be obtained directly from the embassy or one of your destination country’s general consulates: https://uk.nepalembassy.gov.np/.
Citizens of other countries are advised to enquire about the applicable entry requirements from their respective embassy. You are solely responsible for applying for, and presenting, any visa that may be required. RSD assumes no liability if you fail to do this. Please note that entry is dependent upon the approval of the immigration authorities.
Your expert tour guide will be able to provide you with detailed information about the country, people, history, culture, etc., and offer advice and assistance for organizing your trip. They can also help with room allocation and look forward to welcoming you with initial information. Here you will find out all you need to know and useful information about the trip. We have put together a varied programme including numerous highlights, enabling you to experience the culture and diversity of landscape that Nepal has to offer, and learn all about the country and its people. Although your trip already includes a comprehensive package, you also have the option of choosing added extras. We recommend booking the following package:
Gourmet package: The package includes half-board with delicious dinners, including 1× dinner with an Everest sherpa in Kathmandu and 1× traditional dinner in Kathmandu with a folklore show: only £159 per person
Explorer package: The package includes the ”Elephant safari in Chitwan National Park” as well as admission to the International Mountain Museum in Pokhara and the all-day excursion “Kathmandu, Swayambhunath & Patan (World Heritage)”: only £139 per person
The currency unit is the Nepalese Rupee (NPR). 1 Rupee = 2 Mohur = 100 Paisa. Exchange rate (August 2019): 1 GBP = 132.07 NPR; 100 NPR = 0.007 GBP.
The opening hours of the banks are generally as follows: Sun – Thu 10.00 – 14.30, Fri 10.00 – 12.00. Authorised bureaux de change are open for 12 hours a day. It is only possible to change cash into the local currency on arrival in Nepal. It should be noted that exchanges must be made in authorised bureaux and that receipts must be kept if you wish to change the national currency back.
In the cities of Kathmandu and Pokhara, cash can be withdrawn from ATMs. Most ATMs accept Visa and Mastercard credit cards. EC cards are rarely accepted. The bank will charge a foreign transaction fee for each withdrawal. In high-end hotels, restaurants or businesses, but mainly in Nepal’s major cities, credit cards are accepted as a means of payment. For each cashless payment with a credit card, your home credit card company will charge a fee for using the card abroad. On trips to less densely populated regions especially, we recommend taking US dollars in cash, as well as sufficient numbers of Rupees in cash.
The import of foreign currency is permitted without restriction, however it must be declared. The export of larger amounts of currency that have not been declared on arrival is a punishable offence. The national currency must not be imported or exported. Essential items and consumables may only be imported in certain quantities. These include, for example, 1 camera, 200 cigarettes, 50 cigars or 250g of tobacco, as well as medications for your own use for the duration of your stay (with the exception of medications that are subject to a ban – see Government of Nepal, Department of Drug Administration). More information can be found on the Foreign Office’s website. Products made in Nepal can be exported without a permit (with the exception of those subject to an export ban) up to the amount in foreign currency that tourists have exchanged at a bank or state-authorised bureau de change.
More detailed customs information on bringing goods into the country is available from the embassy of your country of destination. Legally binding information can only be provided there.
The customs regulations for the UK can be viewed on the British Customs www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk.
General travel information::
Due to difficulties with the power supply, a manoeuvre known as ”load shedding” is carried out across Nepal, although this has decreased significantly over recent months. This means several hours of no power each day, which causes major problems for the entire country, especially industry. Tourists should bear in mind that batteries cannot always be charged.
Safety information specific to Nepal:
Bandhs/strikes: In the current political climate, there are only rare short-notice ”bandhs” (forced strikes of any kind, including in the Kathmandu Valley, with blockades / road blocks); sometimes, these are also imposed by force. The latter also applies to transport strikes. Based on previous experience, these protest campaigns can disrupt public life. During strikes, overland travel is impossible or is only possible under difficult conditions. Air traffic is generally not affected by bandhs, although arrival at and departure from the airport may be. We recommend avoiding any demonstrations and large gatherings of people. In the Terai especially, protest campaigns and violent, in some cases dangerous, confrontations may occur.
Crime: In tourist areas especially, pickpockets may operate. Rapes have been reported on occasion. Women are therefore recommended to take extra care after dark, and to always be accompanied when out walking. Criminal organisations and other gangs may, in isolated cases, attempt to blackmail national and international organisations, business people and individuals, and make occasionally violent demands. Trekking tourists are occasionally the target of such ”attempted extortion of donations”. A local guide can de-escalate such situations. When dealing with state security forces, it should be noted that
Nepal sometimes has a different understanding of the law. Compliant behaviour is therefore recommended.
Natural disasters: Nepal lies in an area of seismic activity, and the Himalayas region especially is at high risk of earthquakes. In the event of a severe earthquake, it must be assumed that medical facilities and general emergency services will be overloaded. During the monsoon period, which lasts in Nepal from June to the start of October, sudden and often prolonged bad weather can cause repeated flooding, torrents and mudslides that can even affect and restrict main transport routes. Travellers should follow the bad weather warnings issued by the Department of Hydrology and Meteorology and take particular care, especially on mountain slopes and near rivers.
Special criminal provisions:
If you stay in Nepal longer than your visa allows, you may be required to pay a fine or even face imprisonment. The Nepalese police and judiciary prosecute drug offences harshly. Long prison sentences are to be expected for breaking the law. The export of large sums of money not declared on arrival can also incur significant financial penalties or imprisonment.
Sexual acts with minors are also prohibited and will be punished with a severe fine as well as with imprisonment. Homosexual acts are no longer criminal in Nepal, however we
recommend refraining from behaviour that may be regarded by the local population as provocative, and being respectful to local customs. The Nepalese Electronic Transactions Act punishes articles in social and electronic media that disrupt social harmony in Nepal or defame individuals. Foreigners may be punished with deportation and/or prison sentences.
Vaccinations: At least 8 weeks before your trip, check the latest country-specific health advice from the National Travel Health Network and Centre (NaTHNaC) on the TravelHealthPro website (https://travelhealthpro.org.uk/country/159/nepal) Travellers should be up to date with routine vaccination courses and boosters as recommended in the UK. These vaccinations include for example measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine and diphtheria-tetanus-polio vaccine. Every traveller should be sufficiently protected against tetanus and typhoid as well as hepatitis A.
Cholera, diarrhoea and gastrointestinal problems: In Nepal, and especially in the Kathmandu Valley, there is an increase in cases of cholera at the start of the monsoon season. Diarrhoeal illnesses are common all year round throughout the country. Tap water is not always safe to drink, even in cities. We recommend only consuming bottled or canned drinks, or filtering, chemically disinfecting or boiling water before drinking it. Only treated drinking water should be used for washing fruit or vegetables or for brushing your teeth. Do not consume raw, uncooked or un-peeled products. Meat must have been cooked very well before being eaten. There is a risk of infection from salmonella, shigella and typhoid bacteria, amoeba, lamblia and tapeworms all over the country. General hygiene measures such as regular hand-washing or hand disinfection after using the toilet and before eating, and keeping flies off food, can reduce the risk of infection.
Infectious diseases: Japanese encephalitis (JE) is a condition that causes inflammation of the brain and is caused by a virus. The virus is transmitted by mosquitoes, which are active at night. Pigs and water fowl are mainly infected by the virus, without appearing to be sick themselves. Cases in humans are rare, however they are often severe and can cause permanent damage or even be fatal. There are no effective medications against the JE virus. Therefore careful mosquito protection and, if necessary, preventative vaccinations are especially important.
There is a risk of JE transmission in the southern regions of Nepal, but isolated cases have also been reported in the Kathmandu Valley.
Malaria is transmitted through bites from the blood-sucking Anopheles mosquito, which is active at night. Untreated, the dangerous Malaria tropica can frequently be fatal in Europeans who are not immune to the condition. The condition can develop even several weeks after a stay in endemic regions. The symptoms of malaria (fever, chills, headache and joint pain, diarrhoea, etc.) are usually uncharacteristic and are hard to distinguish from influenza or a similar illness. With prompt diagnosis, even Malaria tropica can be treated effectively without causing any lasting damage or symptoms. Apart from altitudes above approx. 2,000 m, Nepal has a medium risk of malaria transmission throughout the year, especially in the summer months from May to October. The risk is highest in the southern lowlands and slowly decreases the further north you go as the altitude increases. Around 70% of cases involve Malaria tertiana, a condition transmitted by Plasmodium vivax and which is rarely life-threatening. Around 30% of cases, however, are Malaria tropica. There is no absolutely reliable protection against malaria. The prophylactic consumption of medications (chemoprophylaxis) is not recommended, and is only worth considering in exceptional cases. Due to the risk of purchasing fake medications in Nepal, it is advisable to take your own prescription-only malaria treatment for use in an emergency. If you develop a fever after visiting Nepal, seek medical attention promptly and tell the doctor that you have been to a region where malaria is present.
Dengue fever is transmitted through the bites of mosquitoes that are active during the day. Fever, headache and joint pain, as well as a skin rash, are common symptoms and can be confused with symptoms of malaria or influenza. In isolated cases, the condition can be severe, causing serious consequences for health or even death. There is no vaccination and no effective medications against the Dengue virus. Dengue fever occurs especially in the south of the country, and during and immediately after the rainy season also in the central parts of the country up to altitudes of around 2,000 m.
All-day, adequate protection against mosquitoes (exposure prophylaxis) is the most important form of protection from infectious diseases transmitted by mosquito bite:
• Wear long, light clothing impregnated against insects when outdoors
• Consistently treat all areas of the skin with a suitable repellent
• Use impregnated mosquito nets during the night or stay in mosquito-proofed rooms (fly screens, air-conditioning systems)
Rabies is an infectious disease that is regularly fatal. It is caused by a virus that is transmitted through the saliva of infected animals or humans (through bites, licks to open wounds or droplets of saliva on the mucosal tissue of the mouth, nose and eyes). There is a high risk of bite injuries throughout the country from stray dogs, with the associated risk of rabies. Monkeys can also transmit rabies and should never be fed. Medical treatment for un-vaccinated people who have been bitten is not always available in Nepal. Vaccination before being bitten offers reliable protection against the condition. Therefore the prophylactic rabies vaccine is especially important when travelling to Nepal. It should be completed before you begin your trip. The ”top-up” dose required immediately after a bite can, if necessary, be given once there.
Tuberculosis occurs throughout the country, and is much more common than in Central Europe. It is transmitted from person to person through droplets or close contact. Incorrect or incomplete treatment is resulting in increasingly resistant tuberculosis pathogens, including in Nepal. The wearing of a surgical face mask will not provide protection against infection.
Altitude sickness: Altitude sickness is a condition caused by tactical errors in the essential adaptation to heights above 2,300 m (e.g. caused by too-rapid ascent and over-exertion). It is a potentially very dangerous condition affecting the lungs and brain. Even young, healthy and well-trained people can develop the condition, including those who have already managed high altitudes and rapid ascents without problems in the past. Fatalities are not uncommon, since the fundamental rules are forgotten, early symptoms are missed and medications are used incorrectly. Certain conditions affecting the heart and lungs also increase the risk of developing altitude sickness.
Medical care in large parts of the country is inadequate and often does not meet European standards. Adequate basic care is available in Kathmandu and popular tourist destinations, as well as along major trekking routes. In Kathmandu, medical care in certain specialisms is also of a very high standard. For serious illnesses, medical evacuation may therefore need to be considered, for example to Kathmandu or further on, to India. Adequate and valid health insurance, including repatriation cover, is absolutely essential. Advice from a doctor experienced in travel medicine is strongly recommended an appropriate time before you intend to travel. People with chronic conditions or those needing treatment in particular should be aware of the risks to health of travelling to Nepal. The supply of reliable medications and an uninterrupted cool chain are not always guaranteed. It must be anticipated that, especially in small pharmacies, fake products may be sold instead of proper medications. Travellers should bring sufficient quantities of medications that they take regularly with them to Nepal, and bring a letter from their doctor in English to show at immigration stating that they are needed. There are numerous resistances to commonly used antibiotics throughout the country. A personalised first-aid kit should be carried with you following consultation with a travel physician.
In an emergency, contact the British embassy in Kathmandu (www.gov.uk/world/organisations/british-embassy-kathmandu) Customers must ensure that they are physically and mentally well enough to undertake their chosen trip. They should find out for themselves the physical mobility levels and mental capacity required for this trip.
All information is subject to change / Last updated: August 2019