Expedition – Tamang Heritage Trail Trek

Nepal,

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12 people
15 days
Code: HNXT
Activity and Adventure, Expedition, Tours

Overview of Expedition – Tamang Heritage Trail Trek

Sacred Tibetan culture permeates every inch this expedition, seemingly touching everything in its path… including you. The opening of the Tamang Heritage Trail, which was once an unexplored part of the Langtang National Park, allows you to venture deep into the Tamang hinterland. This trek takes you through the verdant midlands and into Tamang villages including Briddim and Gatlang, where you will have a chance to meet locals. The Tamang people were originally Tibetan horse traders who used to migrate back and forth between Tibet and the lowlands of Nepal. They are considered one of the oldest tribes of Nepal, with roots tracing back to the ancient people of Mongolia. Your trek also takes you along alpine terrains, meadows and rhododendron forests. Take in soaring views of Manaslu Massif, Ganesh, Langtang and Jugal Himal and soothe your tired feet in the Tatopani hot springs before finishing back in Kathmandu.

After the devastating earthquakes of 2015, Intrepid Travel, together with our not-for-profit organisation The Intrepid Foundation, launched the Namaste Nepal campaign to encourage visitors back into the region.

For the 2015/16 season, we are donating all profits from our Nepal trips to local projects and international NGOs, such as PLAN International and the World Wildlife Fund (WWF). We’re very proud to report that so far we’ve raised over $A700,000 through traveller donations and contributions from our business.

PLAN has been supporting Nepalese people and communities as they rebuild homes and schools, with a focus on ‘building back better’. WWF have been concentrating on tiger preservation, working with locals to improve habitat sustainability and conservation.

By travelling to Nepal, you are not only helping a struggling community get back on its feet, you’re also contributing to animal conservation, rebuilding efforts and the empowerment of local women and children. Thanks so much for choosing to visit Nepal.

CHANGES TO TRIP – October 2017 onwards
If you’re looking to travel after May 2017, please have a look at the amended itinerary HNXV – Tamang Heritage and Langtang Valley Trek – http://www.intrepidtravel.com/au/nepal/tamang-heritage-and-langtang-trek-106102

Trip Summary for Expedition – Tamang Heritage Trail Trek

Start Location: Kathmandu,   End Location: Kathmandu

Countries Visited: Nepal, 
Meals Included: Breakfast: 2   Lunches: 0   Dinners: 0
Highlights:

    • An overnight homestay with a local family in Briddim allows you to share stories, experience some traditional home cooking and sleep overnight in a comfortable wooden home
    • Walk uphill to discover a 100-year-old monastery in the village of Gatlang then head out to find Parvati Kunda, the secret lake that is revered for its apparent powers of fertility
    • Perhaps encounter troops of Grey Langur Monkeys as you pass through the rhododendron forest of Thaman on your way to the quaint village of Brimdang
    • A chance to stay overnight at The Famous Farm in Nuwakot, set on an organic farm where you can pick vegetables and take a cooking class

 

Day 1 - Kathmandu (1360m)
You’ve arrived!
if you've booked an arrival transfer, look for our airport representative, who will be holding up an Intrepid sign at the arrivals gate of Tribhuvan International Airport. Once you’ve collected your luggage, our representative will drive you to your hotel, where you’ll meet your group leader for a short briefing. The evening the group will head to dinner at one of Kathmandu’s fine restaurants. Meet the local representatives from PLAN and WWF and get a great understanding of what the next few weeks will entail. 

Day 2 - Kathmandu (1360m)
Meet with your group in the lobby this morning before heading off to visit a local school with PLAN. Jorpati is a short drive from Kathmandu. 

Later that day, head off on a sightseeing tour around Thamel. Come face-to-face with the Boudhanath Stupa, one of the biggest Buddhist shrines in the world. Whilst there you will encounter monks praying in monasteries surrounding the stupa. You will also visit Pashupatinath Temple, one of the largest Hindu temples in the world, located on the banks of Bagmati River. Here you will see the spiritual Hindu holy men (sadhus) meditating and praying.

This evening you will be issued with your Trek Pack and some departure information for tomorrow’s adventure.

Day 3 - Syabrubesi (1460m)
There’s an early morning departure today, as we join the road that heads northwest through Balaju. Together, we’ll make a steady climb to the rim of the Kathmandu Valley, eventually arriving at the pass at Kakani. As we wind ever upwards to the Trisuli bazaar you’ll get views of the Manaslu Massif, Ganesh, Langtang and Jugal Himal. Prepare yourselves for a few humps and bumps, because the road from Trisuli onwards begins to deteriorate. You’ll be driving in these conditions for around 50 kilometres to Dhunche and then another 15 kilometres to Syabrubesi. Tonight’s accommodation is a basic teahouse.

Day 4 - Gatlang (2238m)
Hope you had a good night’s sleep, because today is going to start with a long climb. For around 2 hours you’ll be ascending up a slew of switchbacks that mark the beginning of our foray into the trail. It’s all worth it when you reach a vantage point with views of Ganesh Himal, the Gosainkunda range and Langtang Lirung. Along the trail you’ll see numerous Buddhist Chortens and mani walls, which all add another dimension to this picturesque landscape. After descending for around 45 minutes we’ll reach the little Tamang village of Goljung, where we’ll stop for lunch. There’s still 2.5 hours until we reach today’s destination, another Tamang village called Gatlang (altitude of 2238m). Besides its obvious cultural richness and stunning location, Gatlang also boasts a 100-year-old Tamang monastery and the secret lake, Parvati Kunda. Legend has it that this lake was discovered in ancient times while the King of Gatlang was on his way to find a missing hunting dog. It is now revered by women for its apparent powers of fertility. You’ll reach each of these landmarks after a 45-minute uphill walk.

Day 5 - Tatopani (2607m)
Are you ready? Today is commonly known as “the toughest day of the trek”. But the rewards far outweigh the grueling bits. Descend gradually along the ridge to the Bamdang Khola, which turns north along the Chilime Khola until you reach the town of Chilime (around 2 hours walking). After crossing a suspension bridge (always fun) you’ll begin an arduous climb of around 450-metres to the village of Gongang. It’ll take around 1.5 hours of steep uphill climbing but there’s a lunch break on arrival. The next section is much less physically strenuous, as you continue the ascent for around 2 hours until you reach Tatopani (2607m).

Day 6 - Thuman (2338m)
As you pass through an incredible rhododendron forest clinging to the side of the mountain, the vines and moss-covered trees give your environment a real “prehistoric” feel. Although, instead of dinosaurs you’re more likely encounter troops of Grey Langur Monkeys. Further on, we reach the quaint village of Brimdang, before continuing up the side of the highest and steepest part of the trail. One ridge after another offers better and better views of Ganesh Himal to the west and the Langtang range on the east. The ridgeline ends atop the open grasslands of Nagthali Hill (3210m), approximately 45 minutes from Brimdang. All of a sudden you are surrounded by jaw-dropping views of Langtang Lirung, Kerung, Ganesh Himal, Shishapangma on the Tibetan side; while before you the Sanjen Ranges open up. No wonder the hill served as a perfect place of meditation and contemplation for monks. Spend as long as you’d like here, taking in the views and enjoying the sense of accomplishment. Then it’s time to descend approximately 900-metres through deep woodlands to Thuman, which faces the Shisapangma and Langtang Lirung peak. A distinct Tibetan influence can be felt in the village, with its Shamanistic beliefs, ancient monasteries and houses covered in woodcarvings.

Day 7 - Briddim (2239m)
Today we pass through rhododendron forests and meadows to reach the Tamang village of Briddim, located in the heart of the Langtang Himal. It will take just over 2 hours of uphill walking. Briddim marks the end of the Tamang Heritage Trail, and is often a highlight for many of our travellers. Here you will get to experience a homestay with a local family, sleeping overnight in their comfortable wooden home. You’ll get a richer understanding of the culture here, and share stories with your host.

Day 8 - Lama Hotel (2420m)
Continue along the trail through the hilly region of Khangjim and Sherpagoan, learning about the rich culture of the Tamang and Sherpa communities along the way. After trekking for around 7 hours, reach our friendly guesthouse.

Our representatives from WWF will take us through the rebilding of the Langtang region over the next few days. WWF are working alongside the local people to help rebuild infrastructure in the valley.

Day 9 - Thyangsyap Village (3230m)
Ascend towards Langtang National Park through Gumnachowk and Ghotatabela, finally reaching Thyangsyap village. (Approx. 5-7 hours walking) Langtang National Park was established in 1976 to conserve the unique flora and fauna of the region; rhododendron, Nepalese alder and oak forest thrive, due to the temperate conditions. The park is also home to red pandas, Himalayan black bears, snow leopards and more than 250 species of birds. Spend the evening at a comfortable guesthouse.

Day 10 - Kyanjin Gumba (3830m)
In the morning, take the trail up towards Kyanjin Gompa; both sides of the path are flanked by stunning views of distant snow-capped mountains. Today we’ll encounter Tamang and Sherpa inhabitants along the trail, as they go about their days. Todays hiking is between 4 and 5 hours.

Day 11 - Lama Hotel (2420m)
Visit the Kyanjin Village and learn more about the lifestyles of the Tamang and Sherpa communities. After breakfast, head back down the trail, via Langtang and Ghoretabela to the Lama Hotel. We’ll walk for around seven hours today, and will descend 1,600 metres.

Day 12 - Thulo Syabru (2130m)
It’s an early start today. After breakfast, descend the trail through corn fields, then cross the Trisuli River via suspension bridge. Follow the river for around five hours until we reach our lodge in Thulo Syabru about 6 hours later.

Day 13 - Nuwakot
After breakfast, walk to Thulo Bharku/Dhunche, then transfer to The Famous Farm (Nuwakot) via private vehicle. This is a charming newer-style accommodation facility set on an idyllic organic farm. Activities you can take part in include picking vegetables and learning to make Nepalese cuisine with the help of the head cook. In the evening you will accompany your leader to the old Nuwakot Durbar (Palace). There is also an optional visit to a children’s home supported by NGO’s of Nepal.

Day 14 - Kathmandu
Rise early today for breakfast before we jump into our private vehicle and drive back to Kathmandu. We will spend some further time exploring Kathmandu before joining with our hosts for a final dinner tonight in Kathmandu.

Day 15 - Kathmandu
The trip ends today after breakfast.

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