The 6 Greatest Treks in Bhutan

Bhutan’s long standing policy of isolationism has preserved traditional lifestyles and cultures in this part of the Himalayas. Something must be different in a country that aims to put “Happiness” ahead of “Capitalism”, a long term goal of policy makers. The policy is more than just words, and regulations on the tourism industry limits the number of visitors to Bhutan at around 40,000 whereby nearby Nepal receives just shy of a million visitors. Bhutan is a country almost untouched by the cultures of begging and touting that spring up around modern tourist hotspots offering trekkers a unique experience if they are willing to accommodate to policy. For westerners, Bhutan has always been difficult to visit and the government has set not only minimum spending requirements but also requires all treks to be arranged through a local agent. Situated in the eastern Himalayas it’s a small country both geographically and population wise. The climate is dominated by the influence of the Indian Monsoon with the best trekking months being from March to May as well as September and October. On every trek in Bhutan you will be accompanied by your own staff consisting guide, cook, camping assistant and a few horsemen […]

Categories: Bhutan

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The 7 Greatest Treks in Tibet - Exploring the Roof of the World

The Tibetan Plateau occupies an area four times the size of France and with an average elevation over 4,500m (14,800 ft) is often referred to as the “Roof of the World” or the “Third Pole” in reference to the number of glaciers and volume of ice that lies within the Himalayas. The great treks of Tibet approach the peaks of the Himalayas from the north and give a different perspective then the treks in Nepal and India which approaches from the south. The weather of Tibet is much drier and colder than conditions in Nepal and India both due to the elevation and the fact that the Himalayas block tropical monsoon moisture from reaching this far north. Strong solar forcing across the plateau in the summer and exceptionally cold winter temperatures are thought to amplify monsoon patterns across southeast Asia and before the uplift of the plateau the monsoon was likely much more moderate then it is today. The Himalayas make up the southern boundary of the Tibetan Plateau and geologists estimate that uplift of the plateau began about 20 million years ago as mantle material flowed towards a low pressure area away from the Himalayas. Tibet might be a […]

Categories: Tibet

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Everest vs. Annapurna Base Camp Treks

Everest or Annapurna Base Camp. If it’s your first time in Nepal you might be wondering which is the better trek? Having done both I would right out the gate say Everest Base Camp. However, if your worried about acclimatization, scared of flying small planes or don’t like colder temperatures then Annapurna Base Camp might be a better option. Here is a short review of both treks and the pros and cons of doing each. Keep in mind at the end of the day this is a bit subjective and that they both deserve to be included in a list of the world’s greatest treks. The first thing to consider is the scenery of each trek. The trek to Everest Base Camp I think wins by a good margin. One of my favorite things about the trek to Everest Base Camp is that from you are almost in direct view of some amazing peaks. On the first few days of the trek you can get a view of peaks such as Thyangmoche, Kusum Kanguru and Thamserku. Once you past Namche Bazaar you are in almost always in direct view of Everest or one of the other giant peaks like Ama […]

Categories: Annapurna, Everest, Nepal

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How to Hack a Cheap Flight to Nepal

Wondering how to get the best deal on a flight to Nepal? Here are some suggestions based on where you might be coming from. You can save a lot if you have some flexibility and are willing to plan in advance. Even if you have some fixed dates you should still find some great tips in this article. If you have any questions about getting a cheap flight don’t hesitate to ask us. Caution! Read This if you are going through India: A Visa is required to enter India so if you have luggage this option will not work since you have to go through immigration to collect bags. However if you have an Indian visa already in hand it’s a good bet. Also remember you can’t leave the transit area of the Delhi airport without a visa so doesn’t plan a layover longer than 8 hours. Some countries are eligible for visa on arrival but they still need to process this at least 4 days in advance online. North America Option 1 Via India to Kathmandu  :  If you’re coming from North America the cheapest flights you will find are out of New York’s JFK airport to Delhi in […]

Categories: Kathmandu

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6 Tips for Buying Cheap Trekking Gear in Kathmandu

Kathmandu is a great place to buy camping equipment and outdoor wear if you are not looking for major name brands. The same down jacket that you might buy in the United States for $300 can easily be obtained for $50 in Nepal. In fact, I always wait until my next trip to Nepal to shop for these types of things. That said cheap knock-offs abound and the quality of the gear varies quite a bit from shop-to-shop. If you do buy a jacket that is labeled North Face or Patagonia it’s almost guaranteed to be fake unless you are buying it from the actual outlet in Kathmandu. For the best shopping experience forgot about the labels and focus on the quality of the actual product you are buying. Here are a few things to look at; 1. Zippers – Test the zippers on whatever you buy carefully by open and shutting them a few times. Make a careful visual inspection as to the strength and ask yourself if it will hold up after use. Bigger zippers are usually stronger but not always. Lots of loose stitching around the zipper is also a bad sign. 2. Stitching – Carefully inspect […]

Categories: Trekking Tips

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