In the Shadow of Nanda Devi

India, Trek & Walk, 15 days - from $1,805 (land only)

Trek & Walk

By: Julie Andrews , London

I found the beginning of the trip seemed to be very strung out with short days of walking.I would have preferred to cover more distance in the early days and to reach the higher mountains sooner. Possibly this was planned for acclimatisation, but I don't think that was necessary a s the effects of altitude didn't really hit until we were higher.Tashie was an excellent leader. He was very attentive to all of us at all times and clearly respected by the rest of the staff. He always remained calm and sorted out any problems with quiet efficiency. He was very observant and frequently pointed out animals, birds and views that we might have otherwise missed. A very enjoyable holiday with excellent, friendly staff.

I most enjoyed staying in beautiful locations (both hotels en route and campsites, walking through working villages-harvest time and ploughing etc, observing the shepherd at work as we shared the field with him for one campsite, walking in higher altitude with the better views, seeing wildlife, campfires, talking to the support staff and learning a little about their lives and fantastic countryside.

I would have preferred more Indian food-seems that the chef was under instruction to provide pasta and potatoes cooked in a western way and he did this very well, along with large portions of fresh vegetables and salad and chapsttis/puris. Just thought that curries would have been easier for him and we would have enjoyed them more than pasta.. I found the beginning of the trip seemed to be very strung out with short days of walking.I would have preferred to cover more distance in the early days and to reach the higher mountains sooner. Possibly this was planned for acclimatisation, but I don't think that was necessary a s the effects of altitude didn't really hit until we were higher.Tashie was an excellent leader. He was very attentive to all of us at all times and clearly respected by the rest of the staff. He always remained calm and sorted out any problems with quiet efficiency. He was very observant and frequently pointed out animals, birds and views that we might have otherwise missed. A very enjoyable holiday with excellent, friendly staff.

I most enjoyed staying in beautiful locations (both hotels en route and campsites, walking through working villages-harvest time and ploughing etc, observing the shepherd at work as we shared the field with him for one campsite, walking in higher altitude with the better views, seeing wildlife, campfires, talking to the support staff and learning a little about their lives and fantastic countryside.

I would have preferred more Indian food-seems that the chef was under instruction to provide pasta and potatoes cooked in a western way and he did this very well, along with large portions of fresh vegetables and salad and chapsttis/puris. Just thought that curries would have been easier for him and we would have enjoyed them more than pasta.. I found the beginning of the trip seemed to be very strung out, with short days of walking. I would have preferred to cover more distance in the early days and to reach the higher mountains sooner. Possibly this was planned for acclimatisation but I don't think that was necessary as the effects of altitude didn't really hit until we were higher.

Tashie was an excellent leader. He was very attentive to all of us at all times and clearly respected by the rest of the staff.He always remained calm and sorted out any problems with quiet efficiency. He was very observant and frequently pointed out animals, birds and views that we might have otherwise missed. A very enjoyable holiday with excellent, friendly staff.

I most enjoyed staying in beautiful locations (both hotels en route and campsites, walking through working villages-harvest time and ploughing etc, observing the shepherd at work as we shared the field with him for one campsite, walking in higher altitude with the better views, seeing wildlife, campfires, talking to the support staff and learning a little about their lives and fantastic countryside.

I would have preferred more Indian food-seems that the chef was under instruction to provide pasta and potatoes cooked in a western way and he did this very well, along with large portions of fresh vegetables and salad and chapsttis/puris. Just thought that curries would have been easier for him and we would have enjoyed them more than pasta..

By: Sheila Whyte, Selkirk, UK

It was so much more than a trekking holiday! I loved the trek - the sheer size of the mountains, the beauty of the ever-changing landscape, the silence, the lovely camp-sites. Then there was the huge culture shock of India itself, a land of such contrast between wealth and poverty, and at the same time, so beautiful. And our visit to the Taj Mahal was just amazing. The whole trip has been such a wonderful experience that it has been very hard to find words to explain it to friends back home.

This was a holiday of a lifetime. All arrangements were well-planned and efficiently executed, and the whole team could not have done more to make our trip a wonderful experience. The only negative comment I would make is that the mess tent(and table) perhaps need looking at, as it nearly blew down one stormy evening. However the team dealt with the situation with great good humour and soon had everything back in good working order.

The preliminary preparations for the trip were excellent and very user-friendly. Information was clear and relevant, and any queries were dealt with promptly and efficiently. Rigzin was a superb leader, taking care of all our needs, responsive to our feelings, informative about the local environment and culture, giving us opportunities to meet local farmer and villagers, and allowing us to share his love of the mountains. A wonderful experience! Haven't come back down to earth yet! Give me time.

By: Marnet Hargreave, Scottish Borders, UK

I EXPECTED A GOOD SERVICE. However this was all even better than imagined.

Most enjoyed Camping and camp life a pleasure/Walking the mountains- beautiful routes, Seeing the mountains. Meeting many local people, a surprise there - a privilege too!

The other accommodation was also a delight. Excellent camp cook too.

Felt absolutely cared for at all times

By: Bill Holmes, Auckland, New Zealand

I enjoyed most the actual trekking and particularly the fact that for 9 days we met absolutely no other tourists. Also the great welcome that we received from the locals in the villages that we passed through - we assumed that we were particularly welcomed because they did not have many parties trekking through their villages so that we were still something of a novelty! And also the grandeur and scale of the terrain we were trekking through.All in all a Great Adventure Holiday. The wide open spaces, the remoteness of it all and the uplifting experience of being in this remote area and at the limits of our physical abilities were all part of the holiday.Lindsay (and I agree with her) classified the holiday as "one of our best holidays ever", and I din't think that I have ever said that before on a feedback form.

By: C and C Sharpe, Scottish Borders, UK

The whole trip was a wonderful experience. Meeting people in the villages and seeing their way of life was an added satisfaction.

Our trip leader was extremely conscientious and caring. We felt very well looked after and given a great deal of information.

Most enjoyed seeing and meeting villagers. Interaction with children. The birds and the fauna.

By: Elizabeth Anne Wickham, Kent, UK

What a wonderful trip! A great itinerary (no other trekking groups at all), fantastic views, fascinating (albeit rough) terrain, amazing food, an excellent trek leader and support team and a lovely group of fellow trekkers.

Most enjoyed: The views, the company of other trekkers, the food (amazing!), trekking in an unspoilt area of the Himalayas where we encountered no other trekking groups, passing through villages and seeing how people live and cope in this remote, high altitude region.

It was tougher than I expected from its moderate (5) grading. I think this trip should be graded higher, not because of the altitude or the length of walking each day, but because more often than not the track is very rough underfoot so that great care needs to be taken not to fall, especially on the steep downhills - and there is very little level walking in this terrain. It should be graded above the Singalila Ridge (which we considered easier) and more on a par with the Goecha La, in my opinion, and probably not recommended for first-time trekkers.

Time and again, our trip leader, Thinles Dorjay, went the extra mile (literally) to ensure the safety, comfort and enjoyment of all the members of our trekking group. This must have proved a particularly difficult trip for him due to the considerable range in age (44-71) and fitness of the party, which meant there was often a big difference in time and distance between those at the head and tail of each day's walk, especially when the conditions were tough. Despite this, Thinles showed never-failing patience and good humour. He was also exceptionally hands-on as a leader of the support team, not just directing op erations but laying in to help with every aspect of the work involved in "keeping the show on the road".

By: Diana Hargreave, Cardiff

This was my first trekking experience. Thinles Jorge was exceptional in his professionalism, not only directing the support team but also leading by example and putting in a lot of hard work. On top of this he led the treks with great skill and with consideration for the differing abilities of the group - and always with good humour.
I hired the sleeping bag and I think I was the warmest person on the trip! Thank you! The support team were truly excellent, the meals produced extraordinarily good and the trip leader exceptional.
I enjoyed the contrast between the craziness of Delhi and the beauty and splendour of the landscape of the Himalayas. I particularly liked the fact that it wasn't an area overused to tourists and we were greeted with friendship by the local people.

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