Kopra Ridge
Nepal

Lodge at Kopra Ridge (3,660m)
  • TRIP TYPE: Trekking
  • TRIP GRADE: Moderate
  • TRIP STYLE: Tea House
  • TRIP LEADER: Local Leader
  • GROUP SIZE: 2 - 10 people
  • NEXT DEPARTURE: 07 Mar 2021

Details

Kopra Ridge is one of the best short treks in Nepal containing all of the elements of a classic Nepal trekking experience including villages, wildlife, panoramic mountain views and range of landscape from forest to high alpine.

Kopra Ridge trek is located away from the busier trails of Annapurna region of Nepal and for four nights of the itinerary you stay in community lodges set up local villagers. The mountain views from Kopra Ridge are superb and include Mount Dhaulagiri, Annapurna South, Fang and Nilgiri and also from Ghandruk one can see Mount Machhapuchhre (also known as Fishtail) and Mount Hiunchuli.

We start the trip by taking the spectacular flight from Kathmandu to Pokhara where you will get views of the Himalayan mountains. For the first two days of the trek we follow the popular trails of the Annapurna foothills passing through terraced fields, rhododendron forests and Gurung villages such as Ghandruk. After Tadapani we leave the main trail and for the next five days we walk along a remote trail while staying at the community lodges. We reach our high point at Kopra lodge at 3,660m and it is well worth getting up early before breakfast to see the sunrise across the panorama of Himalayan peaks.

On the descent from Kopra Ridge we pass through alpine pastures, oak forest and rhododendrons to Swanta village where we stay in another community lodge. After a night at Swanta village we walk up to the popular viewpoint of Ghorepani and then descend to Ulleri. The next day is our last one trekking where we walk out to Nayapool to meet our private transport for the drive back to Pokhara.

  • We are Himalayan trekking specialists and we have been operating trips in Nepal for many years. Roland Hunter, owner and founder of The Mountain Company, has modified this itinerary based on his first-hand experience of the Annapurna region.
  • Read our AITO Traveller Reviews for Kopra Ridge where our overall holiday rating is 100%. Our approach to organising trips in the Himalayas has helped The Mountain Company win awards such as 2018 Gold Award as AITO Tour Operator of the Year and 2015 Bronze Award as AITO Tour Operator of the Year.
  • The Mountain Company will receive bespoke weather forecasts for the Annapurna region from EverestWeather.com and from our in house forecasting throughout the duration of this trek.
  • We send a Thuraya satellite phone on all of our treks in Nepal. It is essential for your guide to have reliable communications with us for logistics, planning and group safety.
  • We provide all porters with windproof jacket & trousers, crampons and shelter as per International Porter Protection Group (“IPPG”) guidelines.
  • We bring a comprehensive first aid kit plus high altitude medicine, antibiotics and other medicines. 
  • Pre trip support will be given by our Operations team with first hand knowledge of Kopra Ridge trek. During high season we have a TMC representative from our UK Operations team based in Kathmandu.

Route Map

Itinerary

Arrival in Kathmandu

No meals

Hotel Tibet in Kathmandu

You will be met on arrival at Kathmandu airport and driven back to the hotel.  Please provide travel plans on booking and we will arrange the pick up and transfer.  A full briefing will be given in the afternoon.

Sightseeing in Kathmandu

Breakfast

Hotel Tibet in Kathmandu

This is a one day guided sightseeing tour of the Kathmandu Valley visiting three out of the seven World Heritage Sites. You will start off by visiting Patan Durbar Square then drive to the Buddhist stupa at Boudhanath followed by the last stop of the day at the Hindu shrine of Pashupatinath. The tour is likely to finish around 4pm and the rest of the day is free to further explore Kathmandu as well as to pack your bags for the trek starting tomorrow morning. You can leave a bag at the hotel with items not needed on trek.

Three major towns are located in the valley, Kathmandu, Patan and Bhaktapur, each having a great artistic and architectural tradition. Kathmandu is the capital and the largest city in the country. Patan, the second largest is separated from Kathmandu by a river. Bhaktapur, the third largest, is towards the eastern end of the valley and its relative isolation is reflected in its slower pace and more distinctly mediaeval atmosphere.

In the Valley the landscape is dramatically sculpted by the contours of the paddy fields. The towns and villages are alive with the colours of farm produce, ranging from pyramids of golden grain to the vivid reds of chilli peppers laid out on mats to dry in the sun. In the streets and towns there is a constant bustle of activity, especially in the bazaars and markets where the farmers sell their vegetables and fruit.

Fly to Pokhara

Drive to Lumle (1 hour)

Walking 5km (3 hours)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Teahouse lodge

After breakfast, we take the morning flight to Pokhara. On arrival you will drive for about an hour from Pokhara along the Seti River valley to the trek start point off the road at Lumle, Chandrakot or Dhab. The path follows through forest in the lower foothills of the Annapurnas where there are good views of the mountains and of Modi khola far below in the valley.

The trail passes through Tomijung known as the bee village due to the old style bee hives attached to the side of the traditional houses. There are terraced fields nearby growing rice and maize as well as a variety of vegetables. Descending from Tomijung we cross the suspension bridge over Modi river and then it is a short walk along the jeep track to Shyauli Bazaaer.

During the months of April, May and October it will very hot and humid with temperatures often more than 30 Degrees Celsius during this trek. If you prefer cooler weather then it would be best to choose the March, November and December departures. It is important to bring plenty of water, wear a sun hat and frequently apply sun cream.

Walking 7km (3 to 4 hours)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Teahouse lodge

After breakfast you follow the trail along Modi Khola river and continue the walk up to Ghandruk village at 2,012m. Ghandruk is a mountain village inhabited mainly by the ethnic caste of Gurungs, this village is famous for being a major recruiting source of Ghurka soldiers for both British and Indian army. There are several Victoria Cross holders still living here. Most of the houses are of traditional design however there are now a few newer concrete buildings being constructed these days. There are fine views of Annapurna South, Hiunchuli, Machhapuchhre and Hiunchuli from the village.

Walking 5.5km (4 hours)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Teahouse lodge

From Ghandruk continue upwards through Deorali and into the forest then through rhododendron forests and over a small pass to Tadapani.

Walking 6.5km (5 hours)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Teahouse lodge

After Tadapani we leave the main trail and for the next five days we will walk in more remote area of the Annapurna region while staying at a network of community lodges. This is a lovely walk through rhododendron and oak forest following a trail originally used by villagers from Ghandruk to take their buffaloes, sheep and goats to the higher pastures in the summer months.

The trail starts to ascend above the tree line and follows a ridge to Deurali (small pass) and then continues up to Bayeli Kharka where the first community lodge is located. From the lodge the view to west is dominated by Mount Dhaulagiri at 8,167m is the seventh highest mountain in the world.

Walking 7km (4 hours)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Teahouse lodge

This section of the trail is on a grassy slope and traverses through pasture with a number of herder’s huts and dzo grazing (crossbred cow and yak). Look out for the colourful Danphe pheasant, the national bird of Nepal, as well as Himalayan tahr on the grassy ridge high above the trail.

Walking 1.5km (2 hours walking)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Teahouse lodge

From Upper Chistibung lodge there is a steady ascent through alpine meadows and pastures then as one approaches Kopra Ridge one sees the tip of Annapurna South. However it is only on arrival at Kopra community lodge that the full panorama is revealed: Mount Dhaulagiri, Nilgiri, Fang and Annapurna South can all be seen. After lunch it is well worth going for a short walk down Kopra Ridge to a viewpoint overlooking Kali Gandaki river far below in this deep valley.

Towards Kaire Lake

Walking down to Upper Chistibung 1.5km (1 hour)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Teahouse lodge

Today we will organise a day walk from Kopra Ridge towards Kaire Lake where the views of the Fang and surrounding mountains are superb. It is a long walk up to Kaire Lake however possible if you have an early start. For those of you not wanting to walk all the way to the lake we can organise a half day walk from Kopra. In the afternoon you descend to the lodge at Upper Chistibung.

Walking 5km (4 hours)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Teahouse lodge

It takes an hour of descent to get back down to Upper Chistibung community lodge, it is worth stopping for drink then carry on down to Swanta village. Along the way we got more views of Mount Dhaulagiri with this mountain providing a lovely backdrop to the terraced fields and traditional houses in the nearby villages. At Swanta village it is worth visiting Swanta Primary school where there are two teachers funded by the profits from the community lodges.

Walking 11.5km (5 to 6 hours)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Teahouse lodge

An hour or so after leaving Swanta village we join the main trail to Ghorepani where there are of course far more others trekkers making one appreciate the quieter days walking along the Kopra Ridge. After Ghorepani we descend through rhododendron forest to Ulleri where we stay in a teahouse for the night.

Walking 10km (5 hours walking)

Drive to Pokhara (1 hour)

Breakfast and Lunch

Mount Kailash Resort in Pokhara

This is our last day trekking where we walk out to Nayapul to meet our private transport for the drive back to Pokhara. We spend one night in Pokhara beside Lake Phewa relaxing before flying back to Kathmandu.

Flight to Kathmandu

Breakfast

Hotel Tibet in Kathmandu

Transfer to Pokhara airport for the flight back to Kathmandu.

Flight home

Breakfast

Transfer to Kathmandu airport for the flight back home.  End of trip.

Dates & Prices

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2021

Dates Trip Leader Price Single Supplement: Room/Tent Availability
Dates 07 Mar 2021 to 20 Mar 2021 Trip Leader Local Leader Price US$1,795pp Single Supplement:
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US$240pp / NA
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Dates 21 Mar 2021 to 03 Apr 2021 Trip Leader Local Leader Price US$1,795pp Single Supplement:
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Dates 04 Apr 2021 to 17 Apr 2021 Trip Leader Local Leader Price US$1,795pp Single Supplement:
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Dates 11 Apr 2021 to 24 Apr 2021 Trip Leader Local Leader Price US$1,795pp Single Supplement:
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Dates 25 Apr 2021 to 08 May 2021 Trip Leader Local Leader Price US$1,795pp Single Supplement:
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Dates 03 Oct 2021 to 16 Oct 2021 Trip Leader Local Leader Price US$1,795pp Single Supplement:
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Dates 10 Oct 2021 to 23 Oct 2021 Trip Leader Local Leader Price US$1,795pp Single Supplement:
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Dates 24 Oct 2021 to 06 Nov 2021 Trip Leader Local Leader Price US$1,795pp Single Supplement:
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Dates 21 Nov 2021 to 04 Dec 2021 Trip Leader Local Leader Price US$1,795pp Single Supplement:
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Dates 05 Dec 2021 to 18 Dec 2021 Trip Leader Local Leader Price US$1,795pp Single Supplement:
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2022

Dates Trip Leader Price Single Supplement: Room/Tent Availability
Dates 20 Mar 2022 to 02 Apr 2022 Trip Leader Local Leader Price US$1,850pp Single Supplement:
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US$240pp / NA
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Dates 03 Apr 2022 to 16 Apr 2022 Trip Leader Local Leader Price US$1,850pp Single Supplement:
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Dates 24 Apr 2022 to 07 May 2022 Trip Leader Local Leader Price US$1,850pp Single Supplement:
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Dates 02 Oct 2022 to 15 Oct 2022 Trip Leader Local Leader Price US$1,850pp Single Supplement:
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Dates 09 Oct 2022 to 22 Oct 2022 Trip Leader Local Leader Price US$1,850pp Single Supplement:
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US$240pp / NA
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Dates 23 Oct 2022 to 05 Nov 2022 Trip Leader Local Leader Price US$1,850pp Single Supplement:
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US$240pp / NA
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Dates 20 Nov 2022 to 03 Dec 2022 Trip Leader Local Leader Price US$1,850pp Single Supplement:
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US$240pp / NA
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Dates 04 Dec 2022 to 17 Dec 2022 Trip Leader Local Leader Price US$1,850pp Single Supplement:
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US$240pp / NA
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For private and bespoke trip, please contact us

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What's Included

  • Return flight from Kathmandu to Pokhara.
  • All transfers including airport collections.
  • One day sightseeing in Kathmandu with Nepalese cultural guide and private vehicle.
  • Twin share room in Kathmandu at Hotel Tibet or Hotel Ambassador and in Pokhara at Hotel Mount Kailash.
  • Twin share room with common bathroom while on trek. We also send along a tent as a back-up in case you prefer to sleep outside or if the rooms at the lodge are full.
  • Breakfast only in Kathmandu and Pokhara, all meals included while on trek. Trek meals include breakfast, lunch, afternoon tea and biscuits plus two course dinner (soup and main meal) plus up to two cups of hot drinks per meal.
  • All trekking arrangements including permits and fees, trekking guide(s) and porter(s). We provide one trekking guide for group size of two people and two guides for a group size of three people and three guides for group size of six people plus.
  • Bespoke weather forecasts for Annapurna region from EverestWeather.com throughout the duration of this trek.
  • Thuraya satellite phone to ensure our guides have reliable communications with us for logistics, planning and group safety.
  • Annapurna trekking map given to you on arrival to Kathmandu.
  • Rubberised luggage tags posted to you before departure.
  • Full financial protection for all monies paid to us through our membership of Association of Bonded Travel Operators Trust (our ABTOT membership number is 5365) and having an Air Travel Organiser’s Licence (our ATOL number is 10921).
  • Pre departure support and advice from The Mountain Company by email, phone or face to face meetings in London. After booking with us we will send our comprehensive “Nepal Pre Trip Information” notes.

What's Not Included

  • International flight to/from Kathmandu.
  • Travel & trekking insurance.
  • Nepal visa for 30 days at US$40 (approx £25).
  • Lunch and evening meals in Kathmandu.
  • Personal clothing & equipment, please see the Appendix for suggested kit list.
  • Tips (guidance on amounts included in our “Nepal Pre Trip Information” notes).
  • Other items not listed in “What is included”.

Accommodation

Hotel Tibet in Kathmandu

Hotel Tibet is located in Lazimpat next to the Radisson and is our usual hotel for our standard trips in Nepal.

We have used Hotel Tibet for over 15 years and our previous clients enjoy staying at this property due to its good location, comfortable rooms and high level of service. There is a garden terrace next to the restaurant on the ground floor and the roof terrace with the Yeti Bar overlooking the city.


Teahouse lodge in Nepal

While on trek at a teahouse lodge in Nepal there are twin share rooms with common bathroom and a heated communal dining room. 

We will provide all meals at the lodges and include breakfast, lunch, afternoon tea and biscuits plus two course dinner (soup and main meal) plus up to two cups of hot drinks per meal. We regularly inspect and select the best lodges in each location.


Practical Information

Communications

We bring a Thuraya satellite phone for logistical, safety and personal use. Personal calls charged at £4 (US$5 or €4.50) per minute and £2 (US$3 €4.50) to send and receive SMS text.

Clothing and Equipment List for Kopra Ridge

For the safety of everyone in the group and to help ensure a successful trek, you are required to have the following items in our clothing and equipment list tailored for Kopra Ridge trek.

As a reminder, the weather on this trek will vary season to season and day to day as you ascend to higher elevations. During the first couple of days on Kopra Ridge trek you could experience hot and humid conditions with temperatures up to 25˚to 30˚C with hottest months in April, May, September and early October. You will experience the coldest temperatures at Kopra Ridge at an altitude of 3,660m where overnight lows can get down to around -8˚C.

Each trekker should bring one backpack for gear required during the day. Your day backpack will contain items such as warm clothes, jacket, camera, water bottles, personal first aid kit and snacks. The maximum weight allowance for back pack is 5kg. The rest of your personal equipment packed in a duffel or kit bag will be carried by a porter. The maximum weight allowance for your duffel bag  is 15kg. Please ensure that your bag is marked clearly on the outside for easy identification.

We suggest you print the kit list and tick items off as you pack them then weigh your kit bag before you come on trek.

Footwear:

  • Walking boots. A pair of water repellent boots with ankle support.
  • Gaiters. A pair used to keep boots dry if walking through deep snow or on wet ground.
  • Walking socks.
  • Trainers or trail shoes. Can be used in lodge in the evenings.

Clothing:

  • Waterproof and Windproof jacket (with hood) and trousers (goretex or similar). For use if it rains or snows during the trek and in windy conditions.
  • Trekking trousers. Minimum two pairs of trousers.
  • Long sleeve shirts. Minimum two shirts.
  • Micro fleece.
  • Mid to heavyweight fleece.
  • Sleeveless or body warmer type fleece.
  • Thermals or base layer for top & bottom (merino wool or synthetic).

Handwear:

  • Fleece gloves (only required for winter treks).

Headwear:

  • Wool or fleece hat.
  • Sun hat.
  • Bandana or scarf. (eg. Buff Headwear or purchase a #myTMCbuff).
  • Sunglasses.
  • Bring extra batteries.

Personal Equipment:

  • Sleeping bag. Maximum overnight lows at Kopra Ridge will be around -10 Celsius. Note: it is possible to rent a bag in Kathmandu from Shonas Rental.
  • Fleece or silk liner for your sleeping bag. A liner protects your sleeping bag from getting dirty and helps by adding extra insulation to keep you warm at night.
  • Recommended size is 30 litres or larger as you need to have enough space to carry water bottles, camera, snacks and extra clothing such as down jacket etc. It is also a good idea to bring a rain cover to keep the contents dry.
  • Stuff sacks for keeping your gear dry and organised. Or even better are fold- drybags such as from Exped.
  • Two water bottles (Nalgene wide mouth bottles are the best).
  • Sunscreen and lipsalve with a high SPF.
  • Insect repellent.
  • Water purification tablets (Pristine, Biox Acqua or Acqa Mira).
  • Favourite snack food.
  • Books, ipod and cards etc.
  • Trekking poles (Black Diamond with “Flick Lock” are best).
  • Camera with spare batteries and memory cards.
  • Insurance certificate.
  • Earplugs (optional).
  • Baby wipes (optional).
  • Hand sanitizer (optional).

Travelling:

  • Small combination padlock to secure the bag.
  • Travel clothes. You will need casual clothing for air travel days and time spent in Kathmandu and Pokhara.
  • Toiletry bag including toothbrush, etc.

Personal first aid kit

Note: we provide a comprehensive group first aid kit but please bring personal medications and other items you might use regularly such as:

  • Any personal medications.
  • Blister treatment (Compeed patches are the best)
  • Rehydration powder (eg Dioralyte).
  • Analgesics (paracetamol, ibuprofen and aspirin).
  • Plasters and zinc oxide tape.
  • Throat lozenges.

Threat and risk assessment for Kopra Ridge

Participants should be aware trekking, mountaineering and travelling in a developing country are activities that involve a risk of personal injury or death. As a condition of booking you must accept these risks and be responsible for your own actions and involvement.

Adventure travel requires an open and flexible attitude. You may experience extreme conditions, unpredictable weather and last minute changes to the itinerary beyond our control. The ability to work in team is an important aspect of all of our trips.

As a part of our planning process we have performed a detailed threat and risk assessment for our Kopra Ridge trek. It is worth pointing out all of our trips have a certain degree of risk, this is of course part of the attraction of adventure travel and why so many people choose to join this type of holiday. However by identifying the potential hazards on Kopra Ridge we can assess the level of risk and implement control measures to reduce this happening.

Our full threat and risk assessment for Kopra Ridge is available on request. For your information we have listed below a summary of the significant risks and hazards identified by us:

  • Falls and trips resulting in physical injury eg. slipping on ice or falling off the path.
  • Altitude illness including but not limited to AMS, HACE and HAPE.
  • Climatic injuries (dehydration, sun burn, heat exhaustion, hypothermia or heat stroke). Please note during the months of April, May and October it will very hot and humid with temperatures often more than 30 Degrees Celsius for the first two days of the trek.
  • Lightning strike.
  • Wildlife, pack animals (eg. donkeys or horses) or stray dogs. Pack animals have been known to knock people off the path. Dogs can attack and bite, we advise you discuss rabies vaccination with your doctor.
  • Earthquake.
  • Risk of fire in the hotel or lodge.
  • Endemic local diseases. We advise you discuss vaccinations with your doctor before departure.
  • Physiological injury such as heart attack, appendicitis, hernia, toothache etc. in a remote area.
  • Road traffic or flight accident [see paragraph “Internal flights in Nepal” for further information].
  • Contaminated food and/ or water.

This trip visits a remote area where you are away from normal emergency services and medical facilities. In case of a serious injury requiring hospitalisation evacuation could take up to several days and may impede your ensuing recovery. Helicopters are the most usual means of evacuation, however they are not always available or they may be hindered by poor weather and flying conditions.

Internal Flights

British Foreign & Commonwealth Office (“FCO”) travel advice to Nepal states that “STOL airstrips in Nepal are among the most remote and difficult to land on in the world and are a challenge for even the most technically proficient pilots and well-maintained aircraft.” For their latest advice please take a look at their Safety & Security section under Air Travel.

There have been a number of recent air accidents in Nepal and in December 2013 The European Union banned all airlines based in Nepal from flying in the 28-nation bloc under the latest changes to a list of unsafe carriers.  For more information on Nepal’s air safety profile take a look at Aviation Safety Network.

Weather and climate for Kopra Ridge

Kopra Ridge trek will have a wide range of temperatures depending on the altitude and the time of day. In the mountains between 1,000m and 3,500m the nights will be cool, normally around 5˚C, and during the day temperatures sometimes rise to 25˚C.  At higher altitudes temperatures range from about 15˚C to -8˚C.

The traditional trekking season in Nepal is late September to May, with October and November generally recognised as having the best weather.  Spring is also a popular time of year with warmer weather and the advantage of seeing spring flowers and rhododendrons in bloom.

Suggested reading and maps for Annapurna region

Maps

Nepal Trekking Map Himalayan Maphouse Scale: 1:900,000 This map will be included in your welcome pack when you arrive in Nepal.

National Geographic Annapurna Trekking 1:135,000

Books

Annapurna south face by Chris Bonnington

Himalayan Pilgrimmage by David Snellgrove

Annapurna by Maurice Herzog

True Summit: What Really Happened on the Legendary Ascent on Annapurna by David Roberts

The Ascent of Rum Doodle by WE Bowman

A Nepalese Journey: The Essence of the Annapurna Circuit (Mountain Photography) by Andrew Stevenson

Nepali Phrasebook by Lonely Planet

 

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