If you are thinking about taking your first trip to Nepal, Tibet you will probably have a lot ofquestions. After all, our journeys are different from standard tours. Here are some answers to the most frequently asked questions about our trips:
How do we travel?Elephants, Horses, rickshaws, plane, bus, motorbike, mountainbike, car . . . and not to mention by foot –are among the many ways we get you around. Generally though we use deluxe, air-conditioned buses where possible and jeeps for the rougher terrains. Travel also includes domestic flights as noted in the itineraries. More details are available depending on the specific itinerary.
What is the food like?Nepal is home to some wonderful food! Like India, it is a paradise for vegetarians, and provides many wonderful meat dishes as well. Kathmandu provides a range of the world’s best cuisines at amazing prices and the traditional Newari & tibetan food of the Kathmandu Valley is unlike that found anywhere else. Outside Kathmandu you will find fabulous local dishes of rice or flat breads,veggie or meat curries, delicious lentil dishes and chutneys. On treks we have our own cook team who will surprise you with the mix of traditional and world food they can whip up in the camp kitchen! We will do our best to satisfy special dietary requirements if we are informed in advance.
What kind of accommodation is provided?We use a variety of different types of accommodations ranging from tents to palaces! For the cultural tours there is often the choice of deluxe or budget accommodations. Deluxe accommodations include five star properties (both heritage and modern). Budget accommodations are usually three or four star properties. Whether budget or deluxe, the hotel rooms are always clean with private bathrooms and friendly management. We do our best to find properties with character whether they are restored palaces or colonial era retreats. For adventure tours we offer fully supported camping or, where available, we use very simple local lodges or “tea houses”. These tea houses are simple but charming and are locally owned and run so using these makes a valuable contribution to the local economies of the areas we trek through. While trekking we endeavour to use local porters and buy local produce wherever possibly, again supporting local economies.
How tough are the treks?We've used the following grading system to help you decide which trek is for you:
- Gentle treks will have you walking for up to six hours a day but generally would not exceed 3000m in altitude
- Moderate treks have longer days with walks of up to seven hours a day, and they may exceed 4000m in altitude
- Difficult treks may include some days with up to ten hours of walking and they may reach up to 5000m in altitude.
What kind of equipment is provided on the treks?We use only top quality equipment on the treks. This includes high quality tents and sleeping bags, as well as comfortable mattresses. On most treks we use porters to carry the gear, which provides them with valuable seasonal employment. Be assured that this is not exploitation but a valuable part of the local economy and we value the service they provide - we insure all our staff,we pay them well and in fact they carry lighter loads for us than they do in the local commercial trade! On the treks we provide you with a dining tent as well as toilet tents for privacy. Becausewe provide you with the equipment, you don't have to spend a fortune on expensive gear. If there is extra gear you would like to use (eg down jackets) it is mostly available in Kathmandu and you may be able to rent it rather than have to buy it. Please contact us with any specific questions you may have about gear.
Will I get my money's worth?Here at responsible treks, we pride ourselves on providing good value to our clients. Although you may be able to travel independently and even possibly cheaper in the region, you definitely will not get the same variety of experiences in such a short time as you will on our tours. You can also be assured that for the price we provide on our tours we do include staff insurance, good levels of pay for local staff and that we support local economies as much as possible! These are things can operators sometimes cut out in order to provide you with a good price. As we have been working in the region for over a decade, we are able to provide socially and environmentally responsible services in a price range that is hard to beat. Our extensive experience in the region takes the hassle out of travel and lets you concentrate on enjoying your holiday.
What is included in the prices?For the exact details of what is included in the particular tour you are interested in, please contact us. If you are under 30 you may be eligible for some special youth rates so please be sure to let us know. However, in general:
Included in our price is:
- all transport, (which could be a bus, raft, car, rickshaw, elephant, horse or plane)
- all accommodation
- meals as specified in the itineraries
- sightseeing arrangements including entrance fees, guide fees, local guide.
Adventure tours also include:
- either yaks or mules or porters, your cook team and sherpas
- two person tents with fly and groundsheet
- comfortable mattresses for sleeping
- drinking water (boiled water on trek)
- wilderness first aid kit and full rescue back up if required.
What is not included in the prices?Items not included in the price:
- international travel to and from Nepal
- visa and passport charges
- airport departure taxes
- personal travel or medical insurance (we insist that you take out insurance!)
- excess baggage charges
- emergency evacuation costs (generally covered by your insurance)
- items of a personal nature (laundry, postage, bar bills etc).