- Accommodation on twin sharing in moderate standard hotels in Darjeeling and Gangtok.
- Daily breakfast in the cities.
- All transportation as on itinerary.
- Fully supported trekking with gears, supplies, crews, pack animals.
- Three meals a day prepared by our crews during trekking.
Cost Does Not Include
- Lunch and dinner in the cities.
- Expenses of personal nature such as drinks, tipping, laundry, phone etc.
- Airfares to and out of Bagdogra.
- Expenses or loss due to nature and unforeseen events such as flight delay, cancellation, illness, accident, inclement weather, civil unrest etc.
- Travel Insurance.
Guide and crews
The trek is led by a local Tour Guide and supported by a trekking crew and pack animals. Your Guide will be a college graduate, trained and certified by local government authorities. Your guide will be with you throughout the trip to lead you on the trail, help organize, coordinate with the crews and animal drivers and assist you interact with the villagers. Your guide knows the trails, villages, local culture, local language, some flora and fauna and will be always willing to share their knowledge with you. They are easy going, flexible and ready to adjust the trip to suite your pace and needs.
The crews come with all the supplies and camping gears. They will set up and break camps for you. The crew member comprises a special cook who is trained to cook western style as well as the local delicacies. We will use porters or pack animals to transport the gears and supplies.
This is an easy trekking
Singalila Ridge trekking is one of the easiest trekking in Indian Himalayas. We don’t need to confront any extreme altitude; the highest altitude being 3690m (12,103 ft.) at Sandakphu and so we do not need to worry about the risk of high altitude. We follow the trails well-trodden by local villages and cattle. Although the trek is graded easy, we need to walk up to 7 hours a day with frequent ups and downs. If you are not optimally conditioned, it’s advisable that at least two months before the trip; you begin some mild exercise that includes walking, jogging or cycling.
What is a trekking day like?
One of the kitchen crews greet you in the morning around 6 a.m., while you are still inside the tent, with a hot steaming mug of tea or coffee and soon you are supplied a jug of hot water for brushing teeth and washing. Then, you will pack your stuff and head to the breakfast table. While you are eating breakfast, our crews will break down the camp and porters and pack animals will set off. We start walking after breakfast, between 7:30 and 8:30 am. You will walk at your own pace but make sure you will not make distance with other trekkers. You will have opportunity to stop along the way to explore villages, interact with the villagers, take photos and take rest. Our kitchen crews will have given us a lunch pack at breakfast time and we will stop for lunch around 11:30 am. We reach our camp usually 3 to 4 pm. Soon we arrive at our camp; we will be served tea and cookies or snacks. We settle in our tent and take rest or read few pages of books or write journal or engage ourselves in photography while our crews are cooking dinner for us. Dinner is served usually 6:30 pm. After dinner, if you are not tired, you can join the crews and play cards. Sometime, crews may bring local drums and sing folklore songs and dance to entertain the trekkers.
Preparing for the trek, vaccination and medications
Once you decide you are going on a trekking trip, it is strongly advisable that you begin fitness training. Taking a lot of walks, particularly up and down hills is the best way to prepare for a trekking trip. Additionally, you can also do jogging, aerobics, cycling and fast swimming. The more you are physically conditioned before embarking on a trekking trip, the more you are going to enjoy the trip.
India does not require any mandatory vaccinations but you may still consider some vaccinations such as Hep A, malaria, rabies etc. You need to consult your physician before you decide to take any vaccination. Our final trip dossier will also list some recommended vaccinations. Our crews carry a basic first aid kit but recommend that each traveler also carry a personal first aid kit including any prescription medication you require.
In the cities, we stay in first class hotels where choices are available and we pick the best one when choices are limited. In Darjeeling, our choice of hotels is May Fair or New Elgin. You will have private bathroom with running hot and cold water and most modern amenities. During the trek, we sleep in the trekkers hut available along the trail. The trekker's huts are run by local families and provide with some basic facilities. We have to share toilet which is in local squat style. For bathing, bucket of hot water with jug is provided. We advise you to bring your own sleeping bags and also recommended sheet liners.
This trip includes 3 meals a day. During hotel stays, you will eat your breakfast and dinner in the hotel and they will provide lunch pack for the sightseeing day. Most hotel and lodge restaurants usually provide western style as well as local delicacies and choice of both vegetarian and non-vegetarian dishes. During the trekking, our kitchen crews provide hot breakfast and dinner and lunch is provided in the box that they prepare during the breakfast time. They usually set fixed menu and you will have choices of western style as well as local varieties. Local delicacies include curried vegetables, chapattis, samosas, lentils and variety of rice dishes and other nourishing meals, prepared with local supplies and produces as much as possible. Our staff will medicate water for cooking and ensure a good level of hygiene for all food preparations.
Best time for trekking
Eastern Himalayan areas experiences cold winters between November to February and monsoon affects Darjeeling from the end of May/June to the middle of September. The best season to take this trip is between mid-March through to mid-June and this is also the time, the rhododendron and orchids come in bloom. October and November are also good months for this trip. March to early May is when sunshine is quite abundant. Temperatures on trek will range between daytime highs of 20 to 25°C (68 to 77°F) with quite chilly evening temperatures with around 5°C (40°F) but temperatures may drop to below freezing at higher altitude. Your final trip dossiers include the weather details depending on what season you are traveling.
Camping Gears and equipment
You do not need any special equipment or clothing for this trek. We will provide all camping gears that include two persons tent, a sleeping bag, mattress, chairs, tables and toilet tent. You will need to bring your personal clothing and boots. A detailed equipment list is provided on booking.
Passport, Visa and Permits
You will require a passport valid for at least 6 months at the time you enter India. You will also require Tourist Visa which you need to obtain beforehand as Indian does not grant visa on arrival.
Before or after the trip, if you intend to travel to Sikkim, you will also need Sikkim entry permit but that can be obtained locally. Please do not mention your Sikkim intention in visa application as it makes the process tedious.
International and internal travel, pre trip and post trips
Our land service starts from Bagdogra Airport in West Bengal, India or Bhadrapur Airport in Nepal. So, basically you can buy your international airfare to Delhi or Kolkata in India or Kathmandu, Nepal. You need to allow a couple of nights in the gateway city before you fly to Bagdogra or Bhadrapur. We can make the arrangement for accommodations and transfers and in the gateway cities and also take care of the internal airfares.
After the trekking, you may add a day trip to Taj Mahal for a day or two or visit the pink city of Jaipur for another two days. If you are starting or finishing your trip in Nepal, you should allow 2-3 days in Kathmandu touring the temples and palaces around and consider 2-3 days jungle safari rides in Chitwan National Park and two days in the beautiful Pokhara Valley.
Note on Itinerary
Although we will do our very best to adhere to the itinerary schedule as listed; it is subject to change for numerous reasons beyond our control.
Booking and Cancellation
When you are sure you are traveling, please don't delay in booking. The internal flights are the key factor in determining whether your trip can be realized or not. A deposit of US$300 is requested along with complete trip application form and passport copies.
Balance payment is due 90 days prior to your departure. Depending on the number of applicants, we may set an early payment date. Credit card payment attracts additional fee.
- 90 days prior departure: Administrative fee US$ 150 per person.
- 60-89 day's prior departure: US$ 250 or 25% of the land cost whichever is higher.
- 45 days to 59 days prior departure: US$ 450 or 50% of the land cost whichever is higher.
- 30 days to 44 days prior departure: US$ 600 or 75% of the land cost whichever is higher.
- Less than 30 days: 100%.
Travel Protection Plan
While we plan and do our best to make your trip smooth and seamless, there may be chances of unforeseen events and conditions such as illness, accident, inclement weather, and flight cancellation or missed connection or loss of baggage etc. that may cause interruption or delay or total cancellation of your trip putting your hard earned travel investment in jeopardy. It’s also possible that you may need medical assistance, emergency evacuation or medical transportation when you get ill or involve in an accident when you are traveling in remote areas. Far & High’s Tour cost does not cover any of these expenses or losses and so we strongly recommend you that you should protect yourself and your travel investment against those unfavorable conditions.