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Holiday Overview

Highlights

  • A combination of the Singalila Ridge and Chomolhari treks
  • Charming hotels in Darjeeling and Kalimpong
  • Bhutan`s mystical Paro Valley
  • Great views of Everest, Makalu, Kangchenjunga, and Chomolhari

East of Kangchenjunga, the Himalayan ranges extend through the former kingdom of Sikkim into the adjacent territory of Bhutan. Home to some of the world's finest mountain scenery, this fascinating region is the focus of a splendid 3-week trekking holiday which combines two short treks and the chance to visit many historic towns, temples and monasteries.  From the spectacularly located hill-station of Darjeeling, the holiday begins with the superb 6 day trek along the Singalila Ridge which offers tremendous views of Everest, Makalu and Kangchenjunga. We then travel to the atmospheric bazaar town of Kalimpong, before crossing the border into Bhutan. Linking together these two treks involves a fascinating 2-day road journey through West Bengal and the south-western corner of Bhutan that are definitely 'off the map' as far as most travellers are concerned. This road journey is an integral and important element of this unique holiday. After a day's sightseeing in the capital Thimpu we travel to the enchantingly peaceful Paro Valley, where we begin the delightful 5-day trek to Chomolhari base camp and the dramatic mountain scenery of west Bhutan. This is a wonderfully varied adventure holiday in a part of the world that is as fascinating as it is relatively little-visited.

Is this holiday for you?

This India and Bhutan adventure holiday is a combination of two unique and exciting treks, and aims to give a comprehensive taste of the available trekking in the Eastern Himalaya plus an insight into the culture of its Buddhist peoples. The conditions, which we encounter on the treks will range from easy trails, sometimes in forest, to occasional steep ascents and magnificent walks along scenic ridges.  Conditions underfoot are notoriously changeable and can be tricky in Bhutan, as the country sits at the milder and wetter end of the Himalayan chain. Although this is not a difficult or sustained trekking holiday, it should be noted that trekking at altitudes above 3000 metres makes greater demands on the body than walking at low elevations, and is of itself challenging even for fit hikers. However, these two classic treks should be within the capabilities of all fit and active walkers.

Brief Itinerary

View in full
  • Meet at the group hotel in Delhi. Transfers from Delhi Airport are provided.
  • Fly to Bagdogra, drive to Darjeeling.
  • Sightseeing in Darjeeling.
  • Drive to Dhodray, trek to Tumling (3070m).
  • Trek to Kalpokhari (3100m).
  • Easy trekking day to Sandakphu (3680m).
  • Trek along the ridge to Phalut (3600m).
  • Descend from the ridge to Ramman (3100m).
  • Trek to Rimbick and drive to Kalimpong.
  • Drive to Phuntsholling in Bhutan.
  • Drive to Thimpu.
  • Sightseeing in Thimpu.
  • Drive to Drugyel Dzong. Trek to Thongo Samba (3200m).
  • Trek to Soi Thangka (3575m).
  • Trek towards Jangothang to camp beneath the east face of Chomolhari (3985m).
  • Hike above Jangothang, then trek down to camp above Soi Thangka (3575m).
  • Trek to Shana, drive to Paro.
  • Sightseeing in the Paro Valley, including the Takstang (Tiger’s Nest) Monastery.
  • Fly to Delhi.
  • Departure day. Transfers to Delhi Airport are provided.
2016
Mon 03 Oct - Sat 22 Oct Code DTB /02/16/ Adult$4,885 Status Guaranteed Book now
More information
  • Darjeeling to Bhutan
  • The departure reference for this tour is DTB /02/16/
  • This tour begins on Mon 03 Oct and departs on Sat 22 Oct
  • This departure is guaranteed and departs within weeks. Secure your place today with full payment
  • Single Supplement $765 - All group hotel nights in India & Bhutan (single tent not included)
  • Single Tent $165
2017
Mon 27 Mar - Sat 15 Apr Code DTB /01/17/ Adult$5,035 Status 2 more to guarantee Book now
More information
  • Darjeeling to Bhutan
  • The departure reference for this tour is DTB /01/17/
  • This tour begins on Mon 27 Mar and departs on Sat 15 Apr
  • This departure is available to book. Secure your place today with a deposit of $1,000
  • Single Supplement $765 - All group hotel nights in India & Bhutan (single tent not included)
  • Single Tent $165
Mon 02 Oct - Sat 21 Oct Code DTB /02/17/ Adult$5,035 Status Available Book now
More information
  • Darjeeling to Bhutan
  • The departure reference for this tour is DTB /02/17/
  • This tour begins on Mon 02 Oct and departs on Sat 21 Oct
  • This departure is available to book. Secure your place today with a deposit of $1,000
  • Single Supplement $765 - All group hotel nights in India & Bhutan (single tent not included)
  • Single Tent $165
The LAND ONLY dates and prices are for the itinerary joining in Delhi. For clients making their own flight arrangements, Delhi airport is the most convenient for transfers to the group hotel. Please refer to the 'Joining arrangements & transfers' for further details.

Flights SHOULD NOT be booked until you have received your booking confirmation and the departure is showing 'Guaranteed to Run' or 'Limited'.


BOOK WITH KE CONFIDENCE - No surcharge guarantee

The price of our holidays can change depending on a variety of factors but unlike some other tour operators, KE have undertaken to guarantee the Land Only price of your holiday will not change after you have booked. The price when you book is the price you will pay, whether you are booking for this year or the next. Book early to avoid any tour price increases, get the best flight prices and take advantage of our 'No Surcharge Guarantee'.

KE Adventure Travel is a fully ATOL licensed and bonded tour operator with ABTA and AITO.

Map & Itinerary

The Route

  • airport
  • point
  • trip direction
  • transfer
  • trek

Holiday Itinerary

  • Meet at the group hotel in Delhi. Transfers from Delhi Airport are provided.

    Meet at the group hotel close to Delhi Airport. Complimentary airport transfers are provided on this day. KE Land Only package services begin with this transfer. We take our dinner tonight in the hotel.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Meals d

  • Fly to Bagdogra, drive to Darjeeling.

    This morning we return to the Airport for our onward flight to Bagdogra. The flight is short and spectacular, with views of the Himalayas, including the peaks of Everest and Makalu. As we come in to land, the massive bulk of Kangchenjunga dominates the scene. Our tour leader and tour vehicles will be waiting for us at Bagdogra Airport and we begin the 4-hour drive up to the one-time British government Hill Station of Darjeeling. At first, we drive through flat rice fields and Assam tea plantations, before the road starts to climb into the foothills of the Himalaya. Darjeeling, built on top of a ridge, faces the Himalaya and is a popular tourist destination for westerners and Bengali’s alike. Darjeeling is a thriving and busy Indian town, but retains links to its British Raj past in the form of the ‘Mall’, a promenade at the top of the ridge where in the days of the Raj, the Sahibs and Memsahibs would socialise while strolling within view of the peaks of the Sikkim Himalaya. Arriving in Darjeeling we check into our hotel and after a briefing from our guide, the rest of the day is free to relax or explore the town.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Meals bld

  • Sightseeing in Darjeeling.

    Before breakfast, for those who wish, we have a pre-dawn excursion to Tiger Hill which is approximately 14km from the town. Here we can witness the spectacle of the dawn's first rays lighting up Kanchenjunga. From our vantage we can also see Makalu and Everest and the natural light show of the sunrise as it washes these Himalayan giants first pink then orange is an unforgetable sight. On the way down we can stop to visit Ghoom Monastery, which boasts one of the highest railway stations in the world, as well as a 5 metre-high gilded statue of the Matreya or future Buddha. Just below here is the 'Bataia Loop' where the railway makes a great spiral passing over itself to gain height while still maintaining a reasonable gradient. After breakfast at the hotel , we can take a sightseeing tour of some of the attractions around Darjeeling. These include the Himalayan Mountaineering Institute (HMI), which has a superb collection of memorabilia from the early days of Everest exploration and the Darjeeling Zoo where the star attractions are red pandas and snow leopards. The Tibetan Refugee Centre and 'Happy Valley' Tea Garden are further options. Also wandering around the town’s many colourful bazaars is a fascinating experience.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Meals bld

  • Drive to Dhodray, trek to Tumling (3070m).

    After breakfast at the hotel, we set off on the 2 hour drive to the village of Dhodray, the starting place for our trek on the Singalila Ridge. We have chosen to begin the trek at Dhodray rather than the more usual start of Maneybanjang at the foot of the ridge, as this involves considerably less climbing. Setting off from Dhodray also avoids having to walk sections of the jeep road which climbs in zig-zags from Maneybanjang up the ridge. The route for our first day’s trekking follows a wide trail through rhododendron forests and meadows with great views all along the way of Kanchenjunga. We camp at Tumling (3070m) overlooking the Singalila Ridge and Kangchenjunga. We are actually spending the night in Nepal but no visa is required.

    • Accommodation Camping

    • Meals bld

    • Time 4 - 5 hrs trekking

  • Trek to Kalpokhari (3100m).

    Today we walk for between five and six hours, beginning with a leisurely descent to the picturesque Nepalese village of Jaubari, where we can take a break for tea. Then it’s back up to the ridge crest for more spectacular Himalayan views and also back into India as we steadily gain height. There is a jeep road along the Singalila (used mainly to supply the Indian Mountaineering Association hut at Phalut) and although the trail avoids this road for the most part, there are occasions where the road offers the best progress. Our next camp at Kalpokhari (3100m), which means the 'Black Lake'.

    • Accommodation Camping

    • Meals bld

  • Easy trekking day to Sandakphu (3680m).

    At this stage of the trip we are walking relatively short days, as we are now above 3000 metres and need to acclimatise carefully. After a pleasant hour’s walk with good bird spotting potential, it is a further 2 hours and a steady pull up to Sandakphu (3680m). The reward is a remarkable panoramic view of Kangchenjunga, Makalu, Everest, Lhotse and the other, lesser peaks of Sikkim and eastern Nepal. The afternoon is spent relaxing around camp, exploring the numerous viewpoints, and adjusting to the thinner air and cooler temperatures at this higher altitude. From our camp, there are remarkable sunset and sunrise views of Everest, Makalu, Chamlang and Kangchenjunga.

    • Accommodation Camping

    • Meals bld

  • Trek along the ridge to Phalut (3600m).

    Weather permitting, we begin today with an early morning call and a short stroll to a prominent viewpoint for the magnificent sunrise on the main chain of the Himalaya. We then return to camp for breakfast before starting the most spectacular section of the Singalila Ridge. The trail climbs up and down but is never too demanding and it constantly rewards us with ever-changing views of the snow-capped Himalaya to the north and north-west. This is one of the finest day’s ridge-walking to be found anywhere in the world. Tonight we camp close to the Indian Mountaineering Association Hut at Phalut (3600m).

    • Accommodation Camping

    • Meals bld

    • Time 6 - 7 hrs trekking

  • Descend from the ridge to Ramman (3100m).

    Leaving Phalut, we are saying goodbye to the views of Kangchenjunga and the eastern Himalaya. This is a great day’s trekking for lovers of birds and flowers as we descend through forests of rhododendrons and magnolias, to our lunch spot near the village of Gorkey. After lunch we walk through rich farmland to another small village, Ramman (3100m). We will either camp here or twenty minutes further along the trail beside a small lodge.

    • Accommodation Camping

    • Meals bld

    • Time 5 hrs trekking

  • Trek to Rimbick and drive to Kalimpong.

    A beautiful morning’s walk, mostly downhill through farmland, leads us to a bridge across the Shiri Khola and on to Rimbick. Here we meet our transport and after saying goodbye to most of our trek staff, we set off on the long drive to Kalimpong. This town was once an important trading centre, strategically located at a crossroads between Sikkim, Bhutan, Tibet and the plains of Bengal. One of the principal commercial enterprises of the town today, is the growing of flowers in extensive nurseries. Drive time: 6 -7 hrs

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Meals bld

  • Drive to Phuntsholling in Bhutan.

    We have the morning to explore Kalimpong, which begins with a sunrise view of Kangchenjunga (weather permitting). After breakfast, we have a short sightseeing trip, which will include a visit to a local monastery and a chance to look around the bazaar. After lunch, we drive to the Bhutanese border at Phuntsholling, complete immigration formalities and then check in to our hotel. Drive time: 4 hrs.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Meals bld

  • Drive to Thimpu.

    It is a 5 - 6 hour drive on a spectacular road to the Bhutanese capital, Thimpu, which is sited in a broad, green valley and surrounded by terraced rice fields. This town of less than 20,000 people is the administrative centre of Bhutan. It was established as the capital of the kingdom as recently as the early 1950’s and has been built strictly along traditionally Bhutanese lines. There is a single main street, which is lined by numerous shops, selling a great variety of goods, local and imported. We check in to our hotel and have the remainder of the afternoon to stroll through the colourful streets with their quaint shops. Drive time: 5 - 6 hrs.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Meals bld

  • Sightseeing in Thimpu.

    We have a day for sightseeing in and around Thimpu. Including a visit to the imposing Tasichoedzong, the centre of the Bhutan government, which is situated above the town. We spend a second night at our hotel in Thimpu.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Meals bld

  • Drive to Drugyel Dzong. Trek to Thongo Samba (3200m).

    After breakfast, we drive approximately 1 hour to Bhutan’s second city of Paro. Beyond the town is the ruin of Drugyel Dzong above the Paro River and here we transfer to 4x4 vehicles for a further 1½ - 2 hour drive along an unsurfaced road to reach the start of our trek to Chomolhari base camp. Arriving at the road-head at Shana, the bags are loaded on to ponies and we set off on our second trek of the holiday. The trail follows the river through a magnificent forest of pine and spruce, mixed with oak, birch and maple, their autumnal colours made even more stunning by the Spanish Moss (old mans beard) that covers most of the trees. After approximately 4 hours we reach our first night’s camp at Thongo Samba (3200m).

    • Accommodation Camping

    • Meals bld

    • Time 4 hrs trekking

  • Trek to Soi Thangka (3575m).

    We continue on an undulating trail through the forest. Where it is shaded from the sun the trail can be slippery in places especially after rain but is otherwise quite straightforward. After around 3 hours we cross a bridge at 3560 metres and make a short climb to a second bridge at the confluence of the Paro Chu and Ronse Ghon Chu. The trail does not cross the bridge but continues along the west side of the river. However on a clear day, its worth crossing the bridge to the chorten for a view of Chomolhari. The trail continues on the west bank for a further 30 minutes to reach our camp at Soi Thangka.

    • Accommodation Camping

    • Meals bld

    • Time 3 - 4 hrs trekking

  • Trek towards Jangothang to camp beneath the east face of Chomolhari (3985m).

    Today we reach our goal for this part of the trek, Jangothang, a beautiful grassy meadow beneath the enormous east face of Chomolhari. We pass an army camp at 3600 metres and a chorten a little higher and, leaving the rain forest behind, we enter more open country and encounter our first yaks. Our way continues through lovely juniper forest, to a small hamlet where you may be able to try the local thomba (beer made from barley), tsampa (roasted flour) and Tibetan butter tea. As with every meal in Bhutan, chillies are served complimentary. Our camp (3985m) is a little further on, by a ruined dzong and beneath the huge east face of Chomolhari. In the afternoon, there are plenty of options for a walk. One possibility is a hike up the ridge behind the ruined dzong to a grassy summit at approx. 5000 metres which offers incredible views of Chomolhari.

    • Accommodation Camping

    • Meals bld

  • Hike above Jangothang, then trek down to camp above Soi Thangka (3575m).

    We make an early start for the 4-hour excursion to the Tsophu Lakes which lies to the north. Here, there is a superb viewpoint for the 3000 metre east face of Chomolhari and its immediate neighbour, the shapely Jitchu Drake. Green grass, grazing yaks, and stunning mountain scenery - it doesn't come much better. We retrace our steps to Jangothang in time for lunch, then trek down valley to a camp above Soi Thangthangka.

    • Accommodation Camping

    • Meals bld

    • Time 7 - 8hrs walking

  • Trek to Shana, drive to Paro.

    A final day of trekking retracing our approach route alongside the Paro River takes us to the roadhead at Shana where we meet our vehicles and transfer back to Paro. We check into our hotel and have a welcome shower before settling in for the evening. Drive time: 2hrs.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Meals bld

    • Time 6 - 7hrs trekking

  • Sightseeing in the Paro Valley, including the Takstang (Tiger’s Nest) Monastery.

    We will spend the day in the Paro Valley, with the option to make the hike up to the Takstang or ‘Tiger’s Nest’ Monastery, which occupies a most stunning location, perched on a cliff high above the valley. The monastery was partly destroyed by a fire in 1998 but, thanks in part to international aid, is now completely restored to its former magnificence. To reach the monastery involves a return trek of around four hours. High up, there is a classic viewpoint for Takstang, looking across the gorge to the monastic buildings seemingly impossibly clinging to the opposite wall. There is a small cafe located at this viewpoint and this makes a great lunch spot. We should also be able to find time today to visit Paro Dzong and the National Museum. Overnight at our hotel in Paro and another chance to sample some excellent Bhutanese cuisine.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Meals bld

  • Fly to Delhi.

    We have to make an early start in order to get back to Paro Airport in time for the morning flight to Delhi. Here we check into the group hotel and the rest of the day is free for shopping or for independent sightseeing in the capital. This evening we will have a ‘farewell’ dinner.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Meals bld

  • Departure day. Transfers to Delhi Airport are provided.

    KE group package services end after breakfast. Complimentary transfers to the airport are provided. If you wish to extend your stay and visit more of India, there are lots of extensions that can easily be added to your holiday. Why not pre-book a 1-day excursion to the fabulous Taj Mahal, or a multi-day Rajathan experience. Contact the KE office for details.

    • Meals b

Holiday Information

  • An experienced local leader
  • Delhi Airport transfers (on Day 1 and Day 20)
  • Delhi to Bagdogra and Paro to Delhi flights and associated airport transfers
  • All land transport involved in the itinerary
  • All accommodation as described in the trip dossier
  • All meals throughout the holiday
  • Full service on trek including food and all equipment (excluding personal equipment) is included in the trek price
  • Travel insurance
  • Airport transfers other than specified
  • Indian visa fees
  • Tips for porters and other trek staff
  • Miscellaneous expenses - drinks and souvenirs etc

Most people will be familiar with the cuisine of India and some delicious Indian dishes will be available at our hotels in Delhi, Darjeeling and Kalimpong, along with an option for more international cuisine. Typically the food in Bhutan is not very spicy though the Bhutanese do themselves eat a lot of chillies both raw and cooked. Hotels in Thimpu and Paro generally offer a range of dishes including those designed for the Western palette. On the two treks the emphasis is on providing a high-carbohydrate and largely vegetarian diet, which we have found to be easily digestible at high altitude. Breakfasts will consist of cereal or muesli, eggs, toast, beans, sausage or bacon with tea and coffee. Lunch is either a packed lunch or a hot meal. In Bhutan lunches are usually cooked at breakfast time and carried in insulated pots. Dinner is a 3 course meal starting with soup and finishing with a sweet. The main dish is a mixture of local and Western cuisine, with the ingredients mostly purchased locally and cooked for us by highly trained trek cooks.

All meals are included in the holiday price from lunch on day 1 to breakfast on day 20.
All clients arriving in Delhi on Day 1 of the Land Only itinerary will be met at the airport and transferred to the group hotel. Clients should let us know if Delhi Airport transfers are not required. Independent Delhi Airport transfers can be arranged to meet clients arriving prior to Day 1 at an additional cost. Hotel contact details and an emergency number will be provided with your booking confirmation.
During this holiday the group will spend a total of 2 nights in Delhi at a tourist-class hotel close to the airport . The itinerary also includes a night in Darjeeling and a night in Kalimpong, where we use comfortable tourist class hotels. Whilst in Bhutan, we use a good standard of hotel accommodation in Paro and in Thimpu. During the 2 separate trekking elements of the trip, there is a total of 9 nights camping. All accommodation is allocated on a twin sharing basis. If you are travelling by yourself you will be paired up with another single client of the same sex. It is possible to hire a single tent while on trek for an additional cost. (Please note single tent hire does not include single rooms in hotels). It is also normally possible to book single rooms for the hotel nights in India and Bhutan, or extra nights in Delhi if you plan to arrive early or depart later than the group trip dates (all subject to availability). For Single tent hire costs, Single room Supplements and additional hotel night costs, please refer to our website (note that hotel prices are subject to change).

View the gallery below for images of the style of accommodation used

During the treks your day will begin shortly after first light when one of the cook crew will wake you with a cup of tea or coffee brought to your tent. You will have plenty of time to get up and pack your trekbag before sitting down to a hot breakfast, during which camp will be struck and the loads sorted. Setting off in the pleasant cool of the morning, we will generally reach our lunch stop by mid-day. The cook crew, having overtaken us on the trail, will already have the lunch preparations well under way. This is a great time for relaxing, reading and sitting in the sun. The baggage animals usually catch up with the group during lunch and are well on their way to camp which we hope to establish well before dusk. It is usual for the afternoon’s walk to be shorter than the morning session. On arrival at camp, the trek crew will quickly put the tents up and a hot drink will soon follow. Dinner is a 3-course meal served in the mess tent. This is a great time of day for reliving the events of the trek so far and for general socialising. After dark, the temperature quickly falls and everyone will soon be tucked up in their sleeping bags.

The group will be led by an experienced English-speaking local leader for each section of the holiday, one in India and one in Bhutan. In addition, for each of the two trekking elements of the trip in India and Bhutan, the group will be accompanied by additional local guides from each country and by full trek crews, including cooks, pony men and their pack animals.

Approximately £120 should be allowed for miscellaneous expenses, including porter and trek crew tips and soft drinks, etc. There are several opportunities to buy souvenirs on this trip. It is not necessary to purchase local currency (Indian Rupees and Bhutanese Ngultrum) before you travel. Sterling and US dollars are readily exchanged in Delhi. Since you will be changing the majority of your spending money into local currency on the day of arrival, we recommend taking this in cash. Credit cards can be used to purchase many goods in Delhi and are particularly useful for more expensive souvenirs. It is possible to withdraw cash (rupees only) from cash machines in Delhi using credit and debit cards. The Indian Rupee is legal tender in Bhutan, but the Bhutanese Ngultrum cannot be used in India. (The Bhutanese currency is fixed to the value of the Indian currency and 1 Indian Rupee is worth the same as 1 Bhutanese Ngultrum).

Tips are the accepted way of saying ‘thank you’ to your local guides, camp staff, porters and pony men. They do not form part of their wages. KE always pays local crews the best rates of pay, no matter what country they are in and any tips they receive are seen as a personal thank you from group members. For our part, we advise local teams that tips are not a duty or a prerequisite but are a bonus and entirely dependent on the service that was given. For your trek crews we recommend that you give a tip if you feel that their services have met your satisfaction. We suggest that tips should be given by the group as a whole rather than from individuals. The group should decide on the level of tipping they are comfortable with but as a rough guide, a contribution of around £30 from each group member for each trek should provide a suitable level of tips for your local crews.

Your baggage on trek will be carried mostly by pack animals and some porters. The packed weight of your trek bag whilst trekking should be no more than 15 kgs/33 lbs. It is possible to leave clothes or other items not required on trek at the group hotel.

All KE clients will receive a FREE KE trek bag.  These have been specially made to stand up to the rigours of adventure travel.  Your KE bag will be posted to you when your trip is guaranteed to run or on receipt of your booking if the trip is already guaranteed.  If you have travelled with us before and already have a KE trek bag you can select an alternative free gift in the booking process.

This holiday involves going to very high altitude. During the course of your trip you will be spending at least one night above 4000 metres and/or trekking to 5000 metres or above. This is not something that you should worry about; the human body is quite capable of adapting to a very wide range of altitudes, but it is important that we follow some simple rules in order to acclimatise successfully. Before coming on this holiday you should read the advice on trekking at high altitude. Unless you have previous experience of trekking above 4000 metres you should consult one of our trekking experts before embarking on this holiday. On this trip we carry a portable altitude chamber (PAC-bag) and/or bottled oxygen for use in emergencies.

The following checklist should help you with your packing. As a general rule, you should always try to keep the weight of your equipment to a minimum.

The packed weight of your trek bag while trekking should be no more than 15 kgs. The baggage limit on the flight between Paro and Delhi is 20kg.

You must bring the following items:

  • Hiking boots

  • Socks

  • Trekking trousers

  • Waterproof overtrousers

  • Underwear

  • Baselayer shirts

  • Casual shirt and/or T-shirts

  • Fleece jacket or warm jumper

  • Waterproof jacket

  • Sunhat

  • Warm hat

  • Sunglasses

  • Thermal gloves

  • Warm and waterproof gloves or mittens

  • Headtorch and batteries

  • Sun protection (including total bloc for lips, nose etc.)

  • Water bottles 1 Litre x2

  • Washbag and toiletries

  • Antibacterial handwash

  • Small towel

  • Selection of dry bags (to keep trek bag contents dry)

  • Small padlock (to lock trek bag)

  • Daypack 30 litres

  • Sleeping bag (Comfort rating -10°C)*

  • Basic First Aid Kit including the following recommendations: antiseptic cream, throat lozenges, diarrhoea treatment (Imodium), altitude (Diamox), painkillers, plasters and blister treatment, Insect repellent (DEET), and re-hydration salts (Dioralite).

 

The following items are optional:

  • Warm jacket (down) – essential for trips in December

  • Trekking poles - recommended

  • Training shoes or similar for camp use

  • Spare laces

  • Shorts

  • Gaiters (highly recommended due to muddy conditions)

  • Thermal baselayer – leggings

  • Sleeping bag liner

  • Scarf or buff

  • Travel clothes

  • Camera

  • Pen-knife (remember to pack sharp objects in hold baggage)

  • Repair kit – (eg. needle, thread, duct tape)

Notes

*Available for hire/rental through KE Adventure Travel

Please make all requests at least 6 weeks prior to the trip departure date. Please note all hire / rental equipment is issued in Delhi. Please remember to allow room in your trek bag for these items.

 

For each holiday there is a minimum number of participants required to enable it to go ahead. Once the minimum number is reached, the trip status will change from 'Available' to 'Guaranteed to run'. You can check the trip status for each departure in ‘Dates and Prices’ table. Other than in exceptional circumstances, we will not cancel a trip once it has achieved this guaranteed to run status and so you are free to proceed with your international flight booking and other travel arrangements.

A passport with 6 months remaining validity at the end of your stay is generally required. The information that we provide is for UK passport holders. Please check the relevant embassy or consulate for other nationalities. It is your responsibility to ensure that you have the correct travel documents and visas for your holiday. Visa requirements and charges are subject to change without notice. If you are travelling outside the EU you should have at least 2 blank pages in your passport for each country that you visit.

Visa India Double Entry

All nationalities require a visa that allows Double Entry into India and you need to make arrangements for this before departure. Note: the new India e-Tourist Visa is single entry only and not suitable. Please apply for your visa through the Indian Embassy in your home country. The cost of the regular Tourist Visa (one year validity and multiple entry) is currently (Jul 2016) £109.44.  Please download the detailed information document: Visa PDF Multi Entry India

A visa processing company such as Travcour www.travcour.com can help with your application. Travcour charge £45 to process your application and a further £9 (for postage) if you want them to handle the scanning of your passport and photo.

Visa Bhutan

All nationalities require a visa. KE will apply for the visa for you. The visa fee is $40 and this will appear on your final invoice. We require copy of the information page of your passport. A colour scan must be emailed or posted to us at the earliest opportunity.

You should contact your doctor or travel clinic to check whether you require any specific vaccinations or other preventive measures. You should be up to date with routine courses and boosters as recommended in the UK e.g. diphtheria-tetanus-polio and measles-mumps-rubella, along with hepatitis A and typhoid. Malarial prophylaxis is not usually required for trips in the mountains, however if you are visiting rural and remote low lying areas then they might be necessary. On holidays to more remote areas you should also have a dentist check up. A good online resource is Travel Health Pro.

You should attend your own doctor and dentist for a check-up. Your doctor will have access to the most up to date information on the required vaccinations for the country you are visiting. In general we recommend vaccinations against the following: Polio, Tetanus, Typhoid, Hepatitis ‘A’. Malarial prophylaxis is not required whilst in the mountains.

The currency of India is the Indian Rupee.

The unit of currency in Bhutan is the Bhutanese Ngultrum.

We recommend you check if you require an adaptor for your electrical items at:

http://www.worldstandards.eu/electricity/plugs-and-sockets/

It makes a lot of sense to spend some time before coming on an active holiday getting some additional exercise. The fitter you are, after all, the more enjoyable you will find the experience. For this trip you need to be aerobically fit and also comfortable with walking for up to 7 hours on some days. We would suggest that you adopt a weekly exercise regime leading up to your trip. Regular hiking in hill country is the best training but jogging, squash and swimming are also good for developing cardio vascular fitness and stamina. Before departure, we suggest that you try to fit in a number of long walks in hilly country.

As a reputable tour operator, KE supports the British Foreign & Commonwealth Offices ‘Know before you go’ campaign to enable British citizens to prepare for their journeys overseas, and we recommend that all KE travellers take a look at the FCO Travel Advice for their chosen destination on the official FCO website: www.fco.gov.uk. North Americans can also check out the U.S. Department of State website: www.travel.state.gov for essential travel advice and tips.

KE treat the safety and security of all clients as the most important aspect of any trip we organise. We would not run any trip that we did not consider reasonably safe.  Should the FCO advise against travel for any reason, we will contact everyone booked to travel to discuss the situation.  We receive regular updates direct from the FCO and are in constant touch with our contacts on the ground.  If you have any questions about government travel advice, please call our office.

During our spring and autumn departures, the daytime temperatures will be of the order of 25°C (below 2000m) and will be rather cooler, at about 15°C at our highest elevations. Night time temperatures at these high camps will certainly drop to freezing and maybe a few degrees below. December trips will encounter temperatures around 4 or 5 degrees lower than the above and may have some snowfall. Our trek dates are outside the monsoon period but you should be aware that the eastern end of the Himalaya receives more rainfall than further west in the Everest or Annapurna regions. It can and does rain here and you should be prepared for this.

  • India. A Travel Survival Kit. (Lonely Planet).

  • Exploring the Hidden Himalaya. Kapadia and Mehta.

  • Bhutan.(Odyssey Illustrated Guide). Pommaret.

  • Bhutan. (Lonely Planet Guide). Stan Armington.

  • Bhutan, Land of the Thunder Dragon. Edmunds

Sikkim Himalaya. 1:150,000. Swiss Foundation for Alpine Research

A two-tone sepia shaded relief map.

Extend Your Holiday

Extensions

When booking your holiday, you will be able to 'add an extension option'.

Once we have received your booking we will contact you to discuss additional services required for the extension and to take any additional deposit.

Agra and the Taj Mahal 1 day tour

The Taj Mahal is the most famous man-made wonder of the world. Easily accessible from Delhi, the Taj can be visited in just one day. This one-day tour departs Delhi at 6am on the Shatabdhi Express train. On arrival in Agra you will be met by your driver and guide for your full day of sightseeing. With its laid-back lifestyle and immense wealth of architecture, handicrafts and jewellery, Agra is amongst the most remarkable cities in the world.

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In the morning you will visit Agra Fort on the sands of the river Yamuna. After lunch at the Taj View Hotel you will visit the world famous Taj Mahal. There will also be time for souvenir shopping in the bazaar close to the fort. Agra is famous for its handicrafts, mostly inlaid marble-work, leather goods, jewellery and textiles. Return journey to Delhi is by private car or train - depending on whether you are departing Delhi the same night.

Agra and the Taj Mahal 1 day tour

From $285 per person

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Delhi City Tour

Old Delhi is centred on the Red Fort and is a labyrinth of narrow, bustling streets including Chandni Chowk bazaar. Must-sees here include the majestic tower of the Qutab Minar, as well as the Red Fort, built by Emperor Shah Jahan. New Delhi was the creation of the British Raj who wanted to show their ascendency over the former Mogul rulers with many grand buildings designed by the greatest ever British architect, Sir Edwin Lutyens.

Delhi City Tour

From $110 per person

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Agra, the Taj Mahal and Jaipur 3 day tour

The Taj Mahal in Agra is the most famous man-made wonder of the world and easily accessible from Delhi. Our 3 day tour visits Agra, Fatehpur Sikri, Jaipur and the Amber Fort. You will depart Delhi on the early morning express train to Agra where a full day's guided sightseeing includes the Agra Red Fort and the Taj Mahal and stay overnight in a hotel. In the morning you depart Agra by private car to Jaipur, stopping en route at the 'ghost' city of Fatehpur Sikri. On arrival in Jaipur you check-in to your hotel and have time to explore the famous 'Pink City'.

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The following morning you visit the Jaipur City Palace and Palace of the Winds. After lunch you leave Jaipur for the impressive Amber Fort, a superb example of Rajput architecture, stunningly situated on a hillside overlooking a lake, reflecting its terraces and ramparts. In the late afternoon, you will make the 4-hour drive back to Delhi.

Agra, the Taj Mahal and Jaipur 3 day tour

From $580 per person

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Agra and the Taj Mahal 2 day tour

The Taj Mahal is the most famous man-made wonder of the world. Easily accessible from Delhi, this 2-day tour departs Delhi at 6am on the Shatabdhi Express train. You will have 2 days to explore the fascinating city of Agra. You will stay overnight at a (minimum) 3 star hotel on B&B basis. On day 1 you will visit Sikandra, Agra Fort and have a tour of the city. There will also be time for souvenir shopping in the bazaar close to the fort.

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Agra is famous for its handicrafts, mostly inlaid marble-work, leather goods, jewellery and textiles. On day 2 you will visit the world famous Taj Mahal and the ‘ghost city’ of Fatehpur Sikri, a superbly well-preserved, four hundred year old, temple and palace complex built by the third Mughal Emperor – Akbar. Return to Delhi by private car.

Agra and the Taj Mahal 2 day tour

From $375 per person

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Ashok

From $116 per room per night

Florence Inn

From $97 per room per night Combining comfort and elegance with economy, the Florence Inn is our preferred group hotel in Delhi. Well appointed throughout and with a smart lobby, it is immaculately clean. The staff are very friendly and helpful. The Florence Inn is just 5 minutes walk from Karol Bargh market and the metro station making it an ideal location for exploring the city.

Claridges

From $166 per room per night Situated in Lutyens’ Delhi within 10 minutes walk of the famous Lodi gardens and Khan Market, Claridges oozes old-world charm and luxury. Set in a landscaped garden with swaying palm trees, you can get right away from the hurly burly and enjoy gracious Indian hospitality. The guest rooms and suites are classically decorated and equipped with all modern conveniences as you would expect in a hotel of this calibre. Claridges contains several excellent restaurants offering a choice of world cuisine and there is an outdoor swimming pool and a health club.

Maidens Hotel

From $133 per room per night Operated by the Oberoi group and set in 8 acres of garden with shady trees, Maidens is one of Delhi's oldest hotels. Built in the early 1900s, it has retained its colonial charm and offers spacious well appointed rooms with high ceilings. The hotel has a restaurant serving international and Indian cuisine, a garden terrace extending to an open courtyard, and a small intimate bar. There is no pool. Located in Old Delhi, it gives easy access to Mughal monuments and the colourful Chandni Chowk bazaars.

Manor Hotel

From $144 per room per night This 2-storey, 15-room boutique hotel in a pleasant garden setting is very distinctive. With clean modern lines and contemporary furnishings the Manor Hotel has an understated elegance and comfort which is very appealing. Its public areas contrast cool Italian mosaic flooring with warm rich wood panelling, and you can enjoy a high level of service which is friendly and efficient. The hotel has an award winning restaurant and a bar. There is no pool but the hotel has a Wellness centre with yoga and massage. The Manor is located in a quiet residential area close to the Lodhi Gardens.

Ambassador Hotel

From $133 per room per night Situated in Lutyens’ Delhi next to Khan Market, this art deco style hotel designed by British architect Walter George in 1945, is a listed heritage building. Its location makes it convenient for both the airport (22km) and the city centre (10 minutes by dive). The Vivanta-by-Taj Ambassador is operated by the Taj group of hotels, so you can expect the best of hospitality and service.

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