Trekking Nepal

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Location: Nepal 
Trip Leaders: Dr. Mike Rechlin and Chris Young
Dates: May 14–29, 2017 | Optional Extensions: May 28–31 Chitwan National Park or May 28–June 5 Volunteer Service
Cost: $2,900/person for a double-occupancy (shared) room | $3,200 for single occupancy*
Costs for Optional Extensions: $550 per person for Chitwan National Park | $250 per person for Volunteer Service
Trip Capacity: 17
Registration Deadline: January 15, 2017

Trip Overview

Loosely translated, the traditional Nepalese greeting "Namaste" means “the goodness within me salutes the goodness within you.” This is a greeting you’ll use often and come to appreciate as you engage meaningfully with Nepal; its people, its culture, and its beautiful mountain scenery.

Join former and current Principia faculty members Dr. Mike (Bahadur) Rechlin and Chris (Hakim Walla) Young on an educational trek through the Himalayas. We will spend ten days trekking through mountain villages of rural Nepal on our way to the Annapurna Sanctuary and Base Camp. Along the way we'll take an in-depth look at how religion and the environment mesh to create Nepal's unique Himalayan culture. We'll visit a Tibetan Buddhist monastery, participate in a Nepali song and dance fest, and sample the local cuisine.  Arriving in the Annapurna Sanctuary, you will want to have your camera ready for the sunrise 360-degree views of some of the highest mountains in the world. This is classic “tea-house” trekking, where our group will lodge and take meals with local families. We will be accompanied by guides from Three Sisters Adventure Trekking, who will not only lighten your load, but also help make the walk more enjoyable.

The program includes two nights in Kathmandu, where we’ll visit ancient Hindu and Buddhist temples and learn how Nepal is rebuilding sustainably after the 2015 earthquake.

Two optional trip extensions are available. You can travel south to the jungles of Chitwan National Park (reminiscent of Rudyard Kipling’s The Jungle Book) or volunteer in the earthquake recovery effort by rebuilding a school or working on another community development project.

This trip includes the following:

  • All accommodations and meals during the trip (breakfast, lunch, dinner, tea/coffee with cookies)
  • In-country flights between Kathmandu and Pokhara
  • Guides in the jungle, entrance fees, a Tharu cultural dance, and a village tour (Chitwan)
  • Annapurna Park entry and TIMS fees
  • Local transportation
  • Guides for trekking in Pokhara
  • Complimentary post-trek massage

The following are included in the Chitwan extension:

  • Meals and accommodations
  • Canoe rides
  • Jeep safari
  • Elephant safari
  • Visit to an elephant breeding center
  • Jungle walk
  • Bird watching

The following are included in the Volunteer Service extension:

  • Meals
  • Accommodations

The following are not included:

  • Airfare, taxes, and fuel surcharges
  • Any checked baggage fees imposed by the airlines
  • Soda with meals
  • Passport and visa fees (visas are required for Nepal and are $40 USD, payable in cash upon arrival)
  • Optional excursions, upgrades to a single room, and personal expenses

*Please note that single rooms may not be available during our trek in Pokhara.

Meet Your Trip Leaders

Dr. Mike Rechlin has had a lifetime connection to Nepal. Beginning with his Peace Corps service and continuing through a stint at Nepal's Institute of Forestry on a U.S. Agency for International Development project, Mike has logged over five years in-country.

Mike taught in Principia College's biology department for ten years and has helped organize and accompany three Principia student abroad groups to Nepal. He is fluent in the Nepali language and has a deep understanding of Nepali culture and history and of the Himalayas. 

Chris Young is an Assistant Professor of Philosophy at Principia College and has focused primarily on the history of philosophy and Eastern thought during his 11 years of teaching. Chris first traveled to Nepal in 1999 as part of a study abroad trip with Fort Lewis College and has returned four times since then. He led two successful Principia student abroad programs to Nepal and is currently planning a Principia abroad to Greece and Italy.

Chris has a deep love of Nepal and its people and enjoys sharing it with others. 

Photo credit: Meg Andersen