Written on: 29/01/2012 by mspauline9 (1 review written)
My husband and I are not in our 'gap' years, but we enjoy doing the things students may choose to do in their gap year, namely travel and learn about another culture. We were able to do that last October 2011 when we signed up for Global Vision International's (GVI) Adventure project in Nepal. We had volunteered with GVI before in Guatemala and liked the way they did business, so decided to travel with them again. GVI's volunteer/adventure opportunities suit us very well as we can combine our love for travel, as well as accomplishing something physically challenging, and the opportunity to help the local community in some way. Also when you travel this way, you can truly say - I know what it's like to live in such and such a country. We had always wanted to get a glimpse of Mount Everest and this adventure trip offered us a chance to do just that plus do some volunteer work with the wonderful Nepalese people. The trek to Everest Base Camp came at the beginning of our six-week project and included adventure at the very beginning - the plane ride from Kathmandu to the small airport at Lukla. The trek through the Himalayas was challenging but breathtaking and led by two exceptional guides who helped, encouraged and laughed with us. There were 7 of us in our little group together with two guides and three porters. At the end we felt like family. Our arrival at Base Camp was exhilarating and joyful; better still was the view of Everest, Lhotse and Nuptse at sunrise the next morning from Kala Patthar. Our orientation week was comprehensive and unique - language lessons, stays at a farmhouse, a typical home and visits to heritage sites in and around Kathmandu. We completed our volunteer project in the mountain village of Bandipur - starting point for several treks including the Annapurna tour. We worked with children ranging in age from preschoolers to ten and eleven in various childcare centers and schools throughout the day. We also completed a painting project and did some restoration work on a Newari architecture library. We were kept busy but there was always some free time within the day to check email, do laundry etc. Our accommodations were basic, but the hot showers were pure luxury. There wasn't too much variation in our food choices but it was plentiful and nutritious. Overall a great experience and we wouldn't hesitate to take another trip with Global Vision International.
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