Take On Nepal – Volunteer Program Itinerary

The 14 day itinerary takes in your arrival in Kathmandu, trip to Batase village in the Lower Himalayas, work in and around the village, as well as the return trip to Kathmandu. All costs from days 1-14, including hotel stays in Kathmandu, transport to and from the village, porters and most meals are covered by Take on Nepal. Further expenses would only apply if you chose to stay in Nepal outside your two weeks of village volunteering.

The itinerary outlined below is not fixed, and can change depending on circumstances on the ground, such as local events and the time of year. Additional side trips might be made if something worthy presents itself.

Day 1

Your arrival in Kathmandu. You will be met at the airport and transferred to your hotel in the city by a Take on Nepal team member.

Day 2

Your first day will begin with breakfast at your hotel. A Take on Nepal Team Member will provide orientation and information about the following day’s trek. You will be reminded of everything that is needed for your time in the village and shown shops to stock up for the trip ahead. As Kathmandu is the starting point for all Himalayan trekkers, many shops do exist to cater to Western tastes, though they are quite basic. Any luxuries you cannot do without should be brought with you from home. It’s also a good idea to carry a stock of energy bars (or chocolate), as these can be difficult to get hold of once you reach the village. These bars could prove a life-line if you find the local village food difficult to eat.

As well as chocolate bars, we recommend that you purchase toilet paper and any other essential items that you may have forgotten. You will also be able to hire/purchase a sleeping bag from a shop in Kathmandu.

After breakfast you will be guided to the famous Buddhist Swayambunath Temple in Kathmandu. This temple attracts Buddhists and tourists from around the world. The view of Kathmandu valley from the top of the temple is stunning. You will then enjoy a local lunch at a typical Nepali restaurant. The time after lunch is allocated for purchasing items for your time in the village.

After shopping you will enjoy a traditional welcome Nepali dinner, after which you will have the opportunity to discuss any concerns and will be briefed on the following day’s plans.

(Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner Included)

Day 3

Time to hit the road, so put on your walking boots. The day will start early with a 7am breakfast at you hotel, after which a car/mini bus will take you on a one hour drive to Sundarijal on the outskirts of Kathmandu. Your walk to Chisopani will begin in Sundarijal. The trek from Sundarijal to Chisopani takes about six hours. The unpaved road from Kathmandu turns into a trail near a small hydroelectric plant. The trail enters through the Shivapuri Watershed and Wildlife Reserve. The first settlement you will come across is Mulkharka, with Tamang inhabitants. The route heads down the ridge through a forest of oaks and rhododendron to Chisopani (2300m.)

This will be a long day, taking in some truly stunning scenery, and should provide you with some great memories. The pace will be slow, so you don’t need to be super-fit to enjoy the experience.

(Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner Included)

Day 4

You will be woken up early to enjoy the sunrise over the Himalayan mountain range. We strongly encourage everyone to wake up to this unforgettable experience.

After breakfast, we will commence our downhill walk to Patybanjyang, where you will experience some great views of the Himalayas. After a short stop in Patybanjyang, we will walk uphill towards Batase Village. The surrounding scenery is breathtaking, and you will look across a vast valley and see rice fields, villages and people going about their daily lives in rural Nepal. This section of the walk will take you along the ridge of a mountain overlooking the other surrounding mountains. Many travellers have commented on it being a humbling experience. Upon arriving in Batase village at approximately 1pm, you will meet Som’s family and enjoy your first meal in the village.

After lunch, you will be settled into your rooms and will have the opportunity to freshen up and to have a short rest before being introduced to the children who live in the hostel. These children are either orphaned or from disadvantaged backgrounds. You will be given a short tour of the surrounding area before enjoying dinner.

After dinner, you will have the option of free time or of offering tuition and support to the children living in the hostel. After the long walks of the previous two days, that sleeping bag is sure to look inviting.

(Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner Included)

Day 5

You will wake up to the sounds of the village: children chattering and cocks crowing. Your first morning will start with a hot cup of tea in the shadow of snow topped mountains, followed by an orientation session. After breakfast, you will be guided to the village school where you will be introduced to the principal, teachers and students.

You will return to the hostel for lunch. After lunch, your Nepali lesson will continue until 4pm.

When the children return from school, we encourage you to assist them with their chores (collecting firewood, cutting grass, preparing dinner, etc.), or you have the option of playing and teaching some new games with the younger children and assisting with homework.

Dinner will be provided at approximately 6:30 pm. The evening is your free time to do with as you choose. Many volunteers have loved spending time with the hostel children, teaching and learning through stories, dance and song around the fire.

(Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner Included)

Day 6

The real work begins! After breakfast you will go to the local school and be provided with orientation about your placement in the classroom. The local students have encountered Western volunteers before, and always find the experience enjoyable.

You will return to the hostel at 1pm for lunch. After lunch you will be given the option of returning to the school to continue teaching the students, or carrying out light duties within the village such as farm work, painting or dinner preparations.

(Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner Included)

Days 7 – 10

On these days your work at the school and in the village will continue as outlined in Day 5. During the week you will be given choices of activities to participate in. Though the first day teaching in the school and working with the villagers can be a little daunting, you’ll find that you quickly get used to the experience.

(Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner Included)

Day 11

Day off — a little R&R. You will enjoy a relaxing day with your group. Your local guide will take you to the highest mountain top in the village, where the views of the surrounding mountains are spectacular. Here you will enjoy a picnic lunch and relaxing time before walking back down to the village in time for dinner.

This day will also be an opportunity for you to share your experiences and thoughts with your group members and leader.

(Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner Included)

Day 12

Back to work! Your day will follow the same schedule as days 5-10.

(Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner Included)

Day 13

This will be tha last day of volunteer work. After lunch you will say your goodbyes to the teachers and the students before returning to the hostel to pack and prepare for your departure the following morning.

(Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner Included)

Day 14

On your final morning you will enjoy breakfast before a 2-3 hour walk down the mountain to catch a bus to Kathmandu – an experience in itself.

(Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner Included)

Your last night will be spent at your hotel in Kathmandu. You will enjoy a final farewell dinner with a Take on Nepal team member that evening to mark the end of your time with Take on Nepal.

Trekking After Volunteering — Visit Everest Basecamp With Us

All of our volunteers are entitled to large discounts off our treks. (Everest Base Camp, Annapurna, the Three Passes, etc.) Contact us for more details.

Volunteer Deviations from the Planned Itinerary

At times, volunteers may have a need or requirement to leave the village, or may decide not to partake in some of the planned activities. For example: you may decide that a break from village life for a few days is needed and travel back to Kathmandu to spend those days in a hotel or guest house. Or, in rare cases, you may find that village life is too stressful or that conditions were not what you expected, and depart early from the volunteer program.

Everyone has different expectations and stress levels, and we fully understand that these sorts of events can happen. We do all we can to help and accommodate volunteers who need to take a break, or even leave early.

However, any extra costs associated with these sorts of deviations from the planned itinerary must be met by the volunteer. For example: if a 4 wheel drive vehicle needs to be hired to take someone back down to Kathmandu, or if one of our guides need to accompany a volunteer — which would happen if someone wanted to travel back to Kathmandu. Any unplanned for stays in hotels would also have to be paid for by the volunteer.

These occurrences are rare, and the extra costs are only charged to the volunteer when it was their choice or circumstances that led to the deviation from the planned itinerary. Most volunteers stay with the volunteer group for the duration of the trip, but all volunteers should have access to emergency funds just in case.

Cost: AUS $1390 pp

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