Our Nepal experience

Our Nepalese guide became a friend

Nepal experience

Their friends travelled already five times to Nepal and their enthusiasm was contagious, and so Christianne Raes and her husband decided to explore the country as well. Last November they travelled with Better Places for two weeks through Nepal and they enjoyed the mix of beautiful nature and culture. “We liked travelling with a private guide and driver.”

Christianne and her husband wanted to visit Nepal in 2015, but then the earthquake happened. “We decided to postpone the trip for a year and went to Morocco first,” she says. “We travelled there with a local guide and that suited us very well. We felt that our money went directly to the local people, without having a large organization in between. For our trip to Nepal we wanted the same kind of trip. I found Better Places online and their approach appealed to us. We got in touch with the local travel specialist in Nepal, Maaike, and everything went very smoothly from there. Maaike designed three proposals for us, making it easy to compare and choose. We opted for an exploration trip where we were sure to see the main highlights of Nepal.”

Nepal experience

Cremations on the river

The trip began in the Nepalese capital Kathmandu, where they visited several temples. The Pashupatinath Temple, made a big impression on Christianne. “Here the Nepalese cremate their deceased in a sacred river,” she says. “It is special to see how the Nepalese handle funerals and how death is just a normal part of life. It’s a different world that we entered , a true immersion in this culture. This visit was for me the highlight of the trip.” They also visited the Boudhanath stupa, where just a big ceremony with pilgrims was held and they have seen the Durbar Square in Patan royal city. “The Durbar Square in Kathmandu has not recovered after the earthquake, but the squares in Patan and Bhaktapur are wonderful,” said Christianne.

Nepal experience
Good driver and guide

After the cities, Christianne and her husband travelled to Nagarkot, a village in the Himalayas. “We travelled the whole way with our driver and guide Vijay, in our own car,” says Christianne. “We were glad we had a driver who drove well, because the Nepalese traffic is crazy. The contact with our guide worked great as well. He spoke excellent English and knew a lot about his country and culture — we have learned a lot about Nepal. He also quickly came into contact with people, which made it easier for us to take pictures and negotiate. Vijay started as our guide but we parted as friends. ”

Nepal experience
Walking in the Himalayas

Christianne and her husband chose for a walk through the mountains. They then travelled through the village of Bandipur to Pokhara and Lumbini. “Lumbini, the birthplace of Buddha,” said Christianne, “was very special. Hundreds of pilgrims gathered to pay their respects to Buddha. Then it was time for the last stop of our trip, Chitwan National Park. We stayed in a very nice lodge, went in a tree trunk over the river and we walked through the park. We saw rhinos, butterflies, monkeys, birds and crocodiles and we saw elephants bathing in the river. ”

Nepal experience

Nepal is safe to travel

The trip was well organized. Maaike put the day-to-day program in an app, Tripplans. Christianne and her husband had information on each day’s itinerary, the hotel and links to fun places to visit. “We have had a wonderful trip and I would recommend Nepal to anyone,” said Christianne. “Once in a while you’ll see a trace of the earthquake, but it doesn’t impact your journey in any way. The Nepalese desperately need tourism and they deserve a good recovery of the industry. Nepal is a beautiful country with stunning nature and a unique culture. ”

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