reach4nepal

Mardi Himal Base Camp Trek 2017

Mardi Himal Base Camp Trek 2017

I am headed to Nepal in September 2017 with family, with my two young daughters June & Maaya. Needless to say how excited I am, no really I am very excited.
I will be there celebrating Dashian (Biggest festival in Hindi Calendar) with family in Nepal after – I don’t remember. Surely it will bring back memories of the childhood.

 
Also when in Nepal, I will be doing two community projects around Annapurna Area, alongside travelers from Canberra in conjunction with Reach for Nepal Foundation. And in between that I will be trekking Mardi Himal Base Camp – all the way upto 4500 meters. The 5 weeks are full on 🙂


Situated just east of one of the most popular treks of Nepal, the Annapurna Base Camp trek, the Mardi Himal trek is a hidden gem.

 
Few trekkers make their way to the Mardi Himal Base Camp spectacularly situated at the base of Mardi Himal and the impressive Machapuchhre. The trail goes along small winding paths, through magical rhododendron forests. I am looking forward to get some amazing views of Mardi Himal, Machapuchre, Annapurna South and Hiunchuli & close up views of the entire Annapurna Range.

 

If you would like to join me, please contact me on 0422 657 897
Lachhu Thapa

The Buddha Odyssey is set to organise their third Yoga, Trekking & Community Trip to Nepal in 2017

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Yoga Pathways & The Buddha Odyssey are again coming together in Oct 2017 and organizing another trip to Nepal from Canberra.

The trip will again focus on the Community Project in conjunction with Reach for Nepal Foundation, while also providing travellers the experience of trekking the Annapurna range & Hatha Yoga wherever possible.

Lou Nulley, yoga instructor at Yoga Pathways & co-founder/director of the foundation leads such a trip each year to Nepal alongside Odyssey tour leader Raju Thapa. Over the years, Lou and Raju have developed a special working relationship and delivered very successful trips.

raju lou

Lachhu Thapa, the co-founder/director of the foundation is also keen to join the tour group this year. Lachhu is excited to be going back to Nepal with family and finish off the project in Annapurna village.

The travel group raises funds for the project before they head off to Nepal.

BHAKTAPUR KATHMANDU VALLEY NEPAL - APRIL 8 2014: People walking near Nepalese temples in shape of pagoda at Durbar Square

The tour starts in Kathmandu, with sightseeing of major attractions of a 2000 year old valley. We then head to picturesque Pokhara where we spend another couple of days. From there we embark on a trek which sees you walking up to 5 hours a day on a route that’s less popular with tourist – making the experience more authentic whilst absorbing the mesmerizing views of the Himalayas.

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The 5 days trekking leads you to our Community Project where you will spend another three days working on the project and spending time with villagers, school teachers and students. Yoga is incorporated on the trip where ever practical. We then head back to Pokhara and fly out to Kathmandu for last minute shopping before our flight back home.

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Historically these trips are fully booked, as participants enjoy the blend of trekking the Himalayas at a relaxed pace, making a real difference in the lives of many people through the community project and maintaining a sense of equanimity through regular yoga sessions.

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The cost of the trip is around $3790 (to be confirmed around Jan 2017) including international airfares, accommodation and most meals.

To lock in a spot please contact us by filling this form

Namaste

Lachhu Thapa

Successful first ever mo:mo: & trivia night in Canberra

Last night The Hungry Buddha Nepalese Restaurant, Canberra hosted a Mo:Mo: night to raise funds for the Reach for Nepal Foundation.

The event which was booked out in just under a week back in Aug 2016, raised around $1650 for the foundation. The event was organised to support Lachhu, Ben and Yog’s quest to raise money by doing a Rickshaw Run in India in Jan 2017.

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There were four kinds of mo:mo:’s on offer –

  • Chicken,
  • Lamb/Rosemary,
  • Potato/Spinach &
  • Pumpkin/Cauliflower/Pistachio

The event was a huge success with local community coming together for a wonderful cause, and is sure to be not the last one.

We would like to thank family, friends, patrons, staff and wonder MC Gordon Scott.

Namaste

Lachhu Thapa & The Hungry Buddha Team

Three friends. 2700 kilometres. One tuk tuk. Crazy? Probably!

rickshaw-run

We’re heading to India at the end of the year to drive a tuk tuk from Cochin to Jaiselmer and raise money for the Reach for Nepal Foundation. It’s part of the annual Rickshaw Run event, and it promises to be a lot of fun.

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Now to take the adventure to another level, we have decided to fundraise for Reach for Nepal Foundation (RFN), which is a start-up charity based here in Canberra.

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RFN works to improve the lives of Nepalese people through initiating and supporting programs that assist earthquake-affected communities to rebuild schools and libraries, provide educational scholarships, foster sustainability, enhance the skills of local teachers and extend participation in sporting activities.

The Foundation’s priority is supporting people in remote, isolated areas of Nepal that have not been reached by other aid agencies. Many of these are only accessible on foot.

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It will be one crazy ride. To support our cause please donate here.

Namaste

Lachhu, Ben & Yog

Community Project, Yoga & Trekking Oct 2016

 

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Lou Nulley, co-founder of the REACH for Nepal Foundation (RFN), and Raju Thapa recently led a group of 10 people from Australia on another successful trek in Nepal, culminating in a community project in a remote area of the country in conjunction with The Buddha Odyssey.

Prior to the trip the group had raised around $3500. Together with funding from RFN, the team funded and helped to rebuild a library at the Hari Prasad school near the Khara Ko Mukh village.

The library was demolished by recent earthquakes and flooding. The facility is a key requirement to assist in the education of the children in this remote region.  The headmaster of the school and the school board were grateful for the team’s contributions, galvanizing the community as parents, teachers and villagers came together to assist the rebuild project.

The team included people from NSW, Victoria and the ACT. After trekking the Annapurna Range for five days absorbing spectacular views of the Himalayas, interspersed with regular yoga sessions to stretch the body and to remain present on the journey, the team enthusiastically arrived at the school to begin the rebuild project.

We were overwhelmed by the generosity and welcome from the community and children at the school.

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Trekking4Nepal to organise trip to Nepal with Reach for Nepal Foundation

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James Tatham, Canberra

Next April marks two years since my maiden trip to Nepal and I’m going back! Yes, that’s right I’m going back. I’ve been longing for a trip back ever since the earthquakes caused the widespread devastation.

This time rather than the Annapurna Region, I’m heading to the Solu Khumbu Region to conquer Everest Base Camp (5,380m), Island Peak (6,189m) plus and a community rebuild project in Pokhara to support Reach for Nepal Foudation.

What’s better… this trip is open to Trekking4Nepal supporters. I want you to come! So many people tell me they wish they could go to Nepal. Here is your chance.

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So here are the rough details at this early stage –

What: 16 days trekking Everest Base Camp, Island Peak, plus 3 days community rebuild project, plus two days leisure with The Buddha Odyssey
When: April/May 2016.
How Many: 6 person minimum.
How much: Approx $2700 USD pp includes the 16 days trekking Everest Base Camp, Island Peak, sherpas, equipment, food and the trekking permit. Plus approx $360-$400 for flights from Kathmandu to Lukla. Plus international flights ($1200ish). Total price = $4,300 USD
Bonus: There is opportunity for the fee waived for 7th participant. So the more the merrier which will lower costs for everyone else.

I think we could do a fundraiser for this event to subsidise some of the costs too.

If you are interested, put your details in this google form

Happy Dashian from all of us at the hungry buddha

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Dashain is the most auspicious festival in the Nepalese annual calendar (falls bet Sep-Oct), celebrated by Nepalese of all caste and creed throughout the country. The fifteen days of celebration occurs during the bright lunar fortnight ending on the day of the full moon. Thorough out Nepal the goddess Durga in all her manifestations are worshiped with innumerable pujas, abundant offerings and thousands of animal sacrifices for the ritual holy bathing, thus drenching the goddess for days in blood.

Dashain commemorates a great victory of the gods over the wicked demons. One of the victory stories told is the Ramayan, where the lord Ram after a big struggle slaughtered Ravana, the fiendish king of demons. It is said that lord Ram was successful in the battle only when goddess Durga was evoked. The main celebration glorifies the triumph of good over evil and is symbolized by goddess Durga slaying the terrible demon Mahisasur, who terrorised the earth in the guise of a brutal water buffalo. The first nine days signify the nine days of ferrous battle between goddess Durga and the demon Mahisasur. The tenth day is the day when Mahisasur was slain and the last five days symbolise the celebration of the victory with the blessing of the goddess.

Dashain is celebrated with great rejoice, and goddess Durga is worshiped throughout the kingdom as the divine mother goddess.

Happy Dashain from us here at The Hungry Buddha

Namaste

The Hungry Buddha, Belconnen – Opening Late Oct 2016

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The Hungry Buddha coming to Canberra’s north!

If you live Northside and love Nepalese food, you’re in luck. You’ll soon be able to enjoy The Hungry Buddha’s fresh chicken mo:mo’s, gently spiced daal bhat and village-style goat curries a little closer to home.

We’re opening a second Hungry Buddha restaurant in Belconnen in October 2016. Watch this space for more news and updates.

We are now open in BELCONNEN [8/9 Luxton St Belconnen ACT 2617 ] (02) 6147 7326  🙂

Namaste

Nepal’s tourism industry on the rebound

Colorful wooden boats on Fewa Tal at Himalaya mountains background in Pokhara Nepal

Colorful wooden boats on Fewa Tal at Himalaya mountains background in Pokhara Nepal

Tourism is the lifeblood of Nepal’s economy, but the industry has suffered from low visitor numbers since the 2015 earthquakes.

After almost 18 months, things are finally looking up for local tourism operators. Nepal’s Department of Immigration reports that visitor numbers are up 13 percent compared to last year. It also expects a significant rise in the number of tourists for the peak autumn season (September to November).

There’s no better time to support Nepal’s tourism industry and experience the adventure of a lifetime. Want to know more? Check out some of The Buddha Odyssey’s tour options and book your trip today.

CRICKET, NEPAL & HOPE

I came to Australia from Nepal in 2002. I lived in Sydney for a few years before moving to Canberra. Both cities were very different to my hometown of Pokhara, Nepal, for many reasons – including the local love of cricket. I had heard of cricket back home, but only because of the popularity of former Indian captain Sachin Tendulkar over the border. As kids we played football (called soccer in Australia).
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It was only in 2003 that I started watching cricket on television. Zimbabwe was touring Australia, with Heath Streak the captain of the touring team. One of my friends, Saroj, patiently explained terms like ‘over’ and ‘ODI’. It took about ten explanations before I understood what an “LBW” was. So it all started back in 2003, the love for the game of cricket.
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Fast forward to 2014. After a decade of watching cricket in just about every stadium in Australia and some of New Zealand, I was determined to raise the profile of cricket in Nepal. So I teamed up with Andrew Dawson, who was then the high performance manager at ACT Cricket. I planned to open a Cricket Academy in Pokhara, Nepal, called Buddha Cricket Academy.
All events leading up to the occasion were smooth. We travelled to Nepal to run a cricket coaching clinic and to inaugurate the Cricket Academy. Nepal had just qualified to play in the 2014 Cricket World Cup in Bangladesh.  Things were looking really good. We couldn’t be happier. We opened the Academy on April 24th, 2014 and had 70 kids sign up for our coaching clinic. Andrew and I ran two clinics each day – one in the morning and one in the evening.
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It was a surreal time for me, and Nepal was in a really happy mood too. Every youngster and elder knew what cricket was. They knew Captain “Paras Khadka”. The love of cricket was at an all-time high. In the World Cup, Nepal nearly edged the hosts Bangladesh and went on to play the super eights against the likes of Australia, England and India.
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We opened the cricket academy with the aim to assist the development of grassroots cricket in Nepal, the way it is here in Australia. Nepal didn’t have a robust Cricket governing body, it didn’t have robust grassroots cricket structure or any meaningful domestic cricket schedule. We thought we were on the right path, having ticked all the boxes.
Two years later, we Nepal suffered a massive earthquake, and I don’t have a Cricket Academy. After the earthquake the numbers dwindled and I was under pressure to sell the place to make way for a different kind of business to move in.
Then this week, I discovered that the International Cricket Council (ICC) has suspended Cricket Association of Nepal. As a result, Nepal won’t receive any ICC funding to take the game of cricket forward.
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The ICC says it suspended the Cricket Association of Nepal’s funding because of government interference with the board. While Nepal’s national teams are still allowed to feature in ICC events, more needs to be done to help Nepal develop the infrastructure and funding to raise cricket’s profile in the region.
I’m very sad today. This unwelcome political intervention undoes all of the hard work that Nepal’s national cricket team achieved for the whole nation. I don’t want to be impacted by this news though. I plan to go ahead and lead a cricket and culture trip to Nepal this September during the ACT school holidays.
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I am doing this to bring in smile in faces of the kids in Nepal. What better way to do it other than with sport? I am calling for cricket clubs, schools, and colleges to put forward an expression of interest for this fantastic travel opportunity. The trip includes:
  • Travel to world heritage sites in Kathmandu
  • 5 x T20 games against schools and clubs in Pokhara
  • 2 x days trekking in the Annapurnas
  • A mountain school visit.
To find out more or to register your interest, go to The Buddha Odyssey website.
Lachhu Thapa