Back in the UK now after almost 2 weeks in Nepal, of which we spent 6 days trekking, 2 days sightseeing and 2 days relaxing, what an experience. We had done alot of preparation beforehand but that did not fully prepare us for our trekking experience. Kathmandu, chaotic, smog bound in May, we visited Boudhanath where a monk befriended us and showed us round the monastery pointing out each of the gods, Pashputinath where we saw closer than either of us anticipated cremations in progress, we declined the invitation to take photographs, and Durbar Square in KTM.
We were going to do Helambu circuit and got as far as Golphu Bhanjyang after 2 days of almost solid uphill, some pretty steep bits too, especially the guides shortcuts ! At Golphu Bhanjyang we decided that this was proving more arduous than we expected particularly in the heat of the day so on day 3 rather than continue up to Tharepati we cut across to Mahanakal and had a rest day befor continuing the next day to Melamchi Pul, where we picked up a lift to Dhulikhel and trekked on to Nagarkot...my that was a tough walk on a really hot day but with beaytiful views. We had earlier in the trip styed one night in Nagarkot and walked down to Changu Narayan so on this second occasion we simply caught the bus back to KTM. After the trek we spent time in garden of Dreams relaxing, what a beautiful place and a world away from the streets on the other side of the wall. ( Rob, if you read this, we used HMA to arrange transport to Nagarkot and arrange a car and driver for a day sightseeing in KTM and on both occassions they were efficient, helpful and very good value.)
Impressions : We had done alot of preparation in advance but were still surprised by the heat and the intensity of some of the ascents, the combination of the heat, steep climb and our 50+ years did cause us to change plan but we stll got in some beautifully scenic walking. Nepalese people were consistently polite and helpful and seemed to be at such peace with the world even when negotiating prices of goods !!.
Would we do it again, yes, not straightaway and specifically to do Everest Base Camp, I would love to get to EBC but we will build on our experience of this first time and I for one will be a bit fitter and more importantly a bit lighter ....though I lost about 3kg on this trek !
Once again to all those who gave us their valuable time and advice thank you, and hopefully now having had the experience myself I can help those planning a trip for the first time too.