Package or Custom Holiday to Kathmandu and Nepal?

The pros and cons for both types of holiday

The type of holiday you choose is ultimately your decision, there are goods and bads about either.

View from Prithvi Highway, NepalWhen going somewhere where you've probably not been before and a long way away many people will choose a Package holiday if only for more security sake.
Everything is more or less done for you, you know what's happening and when it's happening etc.

Most Tour Operators dealing the more sightseeing holidays rather than Trekking go for two or three centre stays, in the case of Nepal you will find 3 or 4 destinations packed into 8, 10 or 14 days. You get to see the main bits so to speak but maybe lack the 'do your own thing' in the sense of just strolling and milling around in the locations you go to.
You can also get the scenario where you may love one place and not another.

The benefits of a custom holiday are you're not having to be up at a certain time to get on the Bus, you haven't someone saying "there's the City, meet back here at 2pm" and the possibility of you being with a lot of people you don't really see eye to eye with is not there.

There are two options in the custom holiday..

1. Book a Flight and Hotel, get there and choose what you do day by day

2. Book a Flight, Hotel and arrange excursions before you get there.

In my case I went the first option route and after reading all the reviews on Trip Advisor chose a Hotel who had a good reputation for arranging Trips and generally giving good service on all things.

I'm neither a miserable or anti-social person, far from it, but I like to be the master of my own destiny; if things go wrong it's down to me and if they go right I've had a fantastic time and quite proud of it!

In the case of Kathmandu many people think it's just a passing through place, which for Trekkers it is of course, but not many see it as a longer stay holiday destination. You can't experience Kathmandu in just two or three days, you need more time as there's so much to see.
My favourite part was simply strolling around the many Streets just observing the Culture, the beautiful colours, the hustle bustle and the many Temples and Monuments of course.

Even so I wanted to see more so on arrival sat down with the Hotel Manager, told him what and where I'd read about. After a chat and about three cups of Coffee we agreed that 3 days in Chitwan National Park, 2 days in Pokhara and an Everest Flight were the excursions out I wanted to do. That left 10 days in Kathmandu, six of which I planned visits to Temples and the Outskirts and five for just strolling around taking it all in.

Being a shorter stay in Pokhara I had the flights and Hotel arranged, for Chitwan I decided to take the Hotel Taxi for the duration of the stay there (3 days - $120 (£74, £40 less than by Plane there and back).
The Taxi drive to Chitwan takes five hours but if I was in a package it wouldn't have given the ability for me to stop the Driver when seeing something or somewhere I liked the look of.

The Costs Package v Custom..

The closest 16 day Package Holiday taking in the things I did and places I went to came out at around £2600 ($4200).
My holiday with the above excursions, never travelling on a Bus came out at £1960 ($3165).

Really it's everyone to their own, whatever pleases you and so on but I would emphasise that Kathmandu is within a very large area with much to see.

My one and only small regret is that I should have gone for 21 days rather than 16. It's the main reason for me going back again !!

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Three ladies at Mugling, Nepal

Monkey in Kathmandu

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