Annapurna Dhaulagiri Community Eco: This new community trail in the Annapurna region is a beautiful trail that our family trekked in April 2012 with our good friend Mahabir Pun. We hope this short documentary encourages other families to travel with their kids and explore this part of the world.
Our recent trip to Nangi village was particularly special as we were able to share our experiences with our 5 and 7 year old daughters.
Tips that we would encourage other parents to consider when planning a trip to Nepal include:
- Seek out good paediatric travel advice regarding vaccines and associated travel medicine issues (gastric issues, altitude etc) well before travelling by visiting a Travel Clinic or your family physician
- Books can be purchased on Amazon such as: I, Doko: The Tale of a Basket by Ed Young; Namaste! by Diana Cohn and Amy Cordova; I See the Sun in Nepal by Dedie King, Judith Inglese and Chij Shrestha. Children can also use these books as a conversation starter in the village or take photographs throughout their trip and stick matching images inside the books.
- If you have an ipad, there are some wonderful apps that not only help your child understand Nepal more, but act as a conversation starter with children in the village:Nepal Sisters is an app that shows the typical day of a variety of young school girls.MyNepali is an app that has some basic Nepali words, complete with voice over and text of animals and transport.SneakyPeaks is an app that captures the 8000+ metre high mountains in a puzzle, and when you solve the puzzle, it tells you about the peak.
- Prepare children for trekking prior by setting a realistic distance goal and drawing a barometer to chart their success – consider incidental opportunities like walking home from school – as long as they have their hiking shoes on it’s counted!
- Set realistic travel plans. Kids will walk slower, need more frequent breaks, be distracted by anything and everything and be prone to whining if the pressure mounts. Having trekked many times in Nepal before, it was actually quite refreshing to be slowed down by the kids, the added benefit being that none of the family experienced any signs of altitude illness!
- Try introducing Nepal or Indian food into your usual diet prior – make a fuss about cooking dhal (lentils) and rice – make chapatis a quick, easy bread kids love.
- Engage the services of a doko porter if nothing else, to keep peace of mind that the kids can alternate between walking and being carried throughout the day. Remember, kids tend to walk in bursts rather than sustained endurance at a young age.
- The biggest aspect to consider is that a family trek is just that a family event, so make your decisions based on what will enable the children to have lasting positive memoriesJanita, Todd, Indigo (7), Sari (5), Jharna Pun (7) in Tikot, April 2012
More information about the trek can be found by contacting Chitra Pun at [email protected] and here: