I hope you are all feeling well rested after the school year has drawn to a close and you have had time to relax, connect to family and friends, and turn your attention to our upcoming adventure!
We wanted to post some details about our arrival into Kathmandu. I know you have all booked flights independently and will be arriving at all different times, and also that some of you who are arriving early have already connected about meeting up in advance. We have recommended that if you are coming just 1 or 2 nights ahead of schedule that you stay in Thamel, the main tourist area, to have a soft landing and to have access to all the facilities you might need. If you are coming much more in advance of that, we will happily connect with you about what else you can do with your time. We will be exploring the areas of Boudha, Patan and Bhaktapur on our course, but there is plenty more to see and do within the Kathmandu valley.
Upon landing in Tribhuvan International Airport in Kathmandu, you will need to both fill in an arrival card and apply for your on-arrival visa. The arrival card can be done by hand and the visa is done electronically at purpose built booths. The fee to pay has just been increased, and will now be $50 for a 30-day tourist visa (if you are arriving and leaving on the same day as our program start and end you can get away with a 15-day visa for $30). For the purposes of the forms you can write your address in Nepal as: “Shechen Guesthouse, Boudha, Kathmandu”.
The airport and baggage claim area can be particularly chaotic, so be prepared for that! When you leave from customs you can change some money (we recommend only a little as the rates are not great) and get a taxi to your destination. There are prepaid taxis available inside the airport, or you can try your hand at bargaining with the taxis waiting outside.
We will be meeting in Shechen Guesthouse in Boudha at 12 noon on 1st August. Taxi drivers should know where the guesthouse is as it is attached to a large and famous monastery of the same name. If there is any confusion, please ensure that you are NOT taken to Boudha Gate, but instead that your taxi turns left at the Pasang Lhamu Sherpa statue along the Mahankhel road. The guesthouse is well known and easy to find from there.
When we meet we will check into rooms and have lunch all together. And after that…the fun will start!
Hope this is all clear, please feel free to reach out to Liz or ourselves if you need further guidance. We are looking forward to welcoming you to Nepal very soon!