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adventure travel trip to Nepal Dashain marigold celebration trek
Marigolds are everywhere during Nepal's 15-day celebration of Dashain
  • Sep 29-Oct 10, 2014
  • Oct 5-16, 2015
  • Privately on Request
  • Duration 12 days
    Group Size 2-12
    Land Cost $3,250 Details
    Single Supplement $350
    Lodging 1 star-2 stars
    Grade III
    Best Time

    Fall Festivals East of Everest

    Celebrate Dashain in the Arun Valley with views of the world's highest peaks

    Day 1      Arrive Kathmandu

    Upon arrival in Kathmandu, you will be met by a guide and transferred to a comfortable Western-style hotel for an orientation to Nepal presented by JOURNEYS staff.

    Meals: None
    Lodging: International Guest House (upgrade available)

    Seek out Kathmandu's many temples
    Day 2      Kathmandu

    Your city guide will introduce you to Kathmandu and show you some of the city's significant sights today. First, visit Bouddhanath, the Buddhist temple that has become a gathering place for Tibetans outside of Tibet. Monks and meditators circle the base of the temple doing their koras, prayer flags stream in the breeze, and the sounds of chanting echo from monasteries on the perimeter of the square. Then, visit Durbar square in the city center, where you will see Hindu pilgrims and holy men around the central temples. Also wander the bazaar and witness the hustle and bustle of a growing city. After the tour, your guide will be available to help you buy any extra gear you need for the trek, or to select souvenirs that you can leave in storage in Kathmandu while you're on the trail.

    Meals: Breakfast
    Lodging: International Guest House (upgrade available)

    Tibetan Buddhists throng around Bouddha Temple
    Day 3      Tumlingtar / Trek to Sabhaya Khola

    Depart by air for Tumlingtar in the Arun Valley of remote East Nepal. Tumlingtar is located on an ancient lake bed that is now bisected by the roaring Arun River. The flight takes about an hour and may offer spectacular views of Himalayan peaks and glaciers. Your camp at about 1,600 feet elevation is at Sabhaya Khola, not far from the Arun and only a short walk away from local villages.

    Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
    Lodging: Camp

    Begin your trek among millet fields and cottages
    Day 4      Trek Sabaya Khola / Wana

    Enjoy a short trek to Wana, a Chetri and Brahmin village that has other castes living on its outskirts. The gradual trek uphill to the village passes through a great variety of terrain, most of it agricultural. You may be able to peek inside houses along the way, and you will join Nepalese travelers on the winding trails. Your camp at Wana is near a ridge top, giving you spectacular mountain views.

    Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
    Lodging: Camp

    The landscape is quite picturesque at this time of year
    Day 5      Dashain Celebrations

    Today is the tenth day of Dashain, the highlight of the festival celebration, when families rejoice and play games together. All Hindus and many Buddhists receive red rice paste tikas from their elders. You will hardly see anyone on Nepal's trails or streets today without this red mark on his or her forehead. Once the tika ceremony is over, families feast and communities gather together in the village commons to celebrate with folk songs and dances. Visit several homes in Wana and also walk to other nearby villages, where you will see children playing on giant bamboo swings, flowers strung from every rooftop, and general revelry in the streets. Consider this fair warning that the party may encroach on your campsite tonight, because once they meet you, the locals will want to learn all about you and welcome you into the festivities.


    Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
    Lodging: Camp

    Participate in a tika ceremony and be a part of Dashain tradition
    Day 6      Wana Market / Chainpur

    Thursday is weekly market day in Wana, and even during Dashain, people from up to four hours away will walk to town to buy and sell goods. Witness the morning market set-up and browse the wares for a bit before setting out on your day's trek. Walk today to the commercial hub of the region, Chainpur (3,600 feet). This is considered by many to be the most attractive hill bazaar community in Nepal. In the afternoon you will be joined on the trail by merchants walking on from Wana to Chainpur, where they will seek more business at tomorrow's market. Camp tonight and tomorrow above the village at a site nestled among tall trees, with a view of Makalu.

    Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
    Lodging: Camp

    Greet villagers at one of their weekly markets
    Day 7      Chainpur Weekly Market

    Friday's market in Chainpur is the largest weekly market in the region. Vendors of all ages drift in throughout the morning, and families picnic around the edge of the market. It's not only a chance for commerce but also the week's opportunity for social exchange. Peruse the wares, capture great photos, and enjoy the people-watching during this leisurely day. Outside the market grounds, the narrow cobblestone streets of the town are lined with shops. You may be able to bargain for local crafts, especially the brassware that is the regional specialty. 

    Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
    Lodging: Camp

    Browse the colorful market wares
    Day 8      Trek Chainpur / Tumlingtar

    Return to where you started, in the town of Tumlingtar. Explore some of the villages you pass as you walk, and soak up the views on your last full day of walking under a horizon of peaks. Your trek comes to an end at the airstrip where you first landed. Camp at Tumlingtar, and dance around the campfire with your team of trekking staff.

    Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
    Lodging: Camp

    Local kids greet you along the trail
    Day 9      Fly Tumlingtar to Kathmandu

    Take an afternoon flight to Kathmandu, where you'll enjoy the rest of the day free. Spend the night at a comfortable Western-style hotel.

    Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
    Lodging: International Guest House (upgrades available)

    Board a flight to Kathmandu, then take in gorgeous mountain views from the window
    Day 10-11      Kathmandu

    Enjoy two final days in Kathmandu to pursue your own interests. Your guide is available if you wish to see other areas of the Kathmandu Valley.

    Consider taking the optional Everest Mountain View Flight (additional cost) to see the mighty Himalayas from the air.

    The ancient city of Bhaktapur, UNESCO World Heritage Site, is a good place to explore if you have an interest in culture, temples, and ancient architecture. Take some time to look in the shops to observe potters, weavers, brass-makers, religious artisans, Brahmin priests, and spice merchants carrying out their professions as they have done here for hundreds of years.  

    If you'd rather get out of the city and into nature, Shivapuri National Park, located about an hour north from Kathmandu, is the perfect place to see wild
    life, birds and botany (specifically orchids and medicinal plants).

    Meals: 2 Breakfasts
    Lodging: International Guest House (upgrade available)

    See the sights during your last days in Kathmandu
    Day 12      Kathmandu / Onward

    Transfer to the airport for your flight home, or extend  your trip with a visit to Chitwan National Park.

    Meals: Breakfast

    Pick out remembrances of your time in Nepal

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