5 Reasons Why You Should Volunteer in Nepal

On March 2, 2014 by Oren and Cassie

From the beginning of our planning, Cassie and I knew volunteering would be a part of our RTW trip. We didn’t quite know where at first, but we knew we wanted to give back in some way. We decided to teach English in the land of the Himalayas, and we can’t think of a better place to volunteer. Here are 5 reasons why you should volunteer in Nepal.

1) The Need to Volunteer in Nepal

This is the most important reason by far. We volunteer because we see someone or some people in need. As much as we encourage everyone to travel, we know that not everyone is able to, especially not in third world countries. To give back to the world that allowed us to travel, we knew we had to volunteer.

volunteer-in-nepal-cassie-teaching

Cassie loved every second of teaching.

We chose Nepal because it sounded exciting – teaching English to Buddhist monks in a monastery. And it certainly was exciting. But we also saw how much Nepal needs volunteers. Whether it’s teaching English or offering medical care or anything else, the country and the people truly benefit from the generosity of volunteers.

2) Your Spare Time

We had enough to do in our spare time in Nepal to fill every weekend… for a year. Pokhara – where we spent 5 weeks – is the third biggest city in Nepal, and is a haven for outdoor adventurers from all over Asia and Europe. (It remains largely undiscovered by Americans.)

volunteer-in-nepal-sunrise-sarangkot

Got a spare morning? Watch the sun rise over the Himalayas.

Want to hike? Bike? Paragide? Boat? Trek? Fly? Go on a jungle safari? It’s all there and more. Want to just relax at a guest house and spend your weekends eating and drinking? You can do that too at the hundreds of restaurants in Lakeside, the tourist district in Pokhara. Best of all…

3) Everything is Inexpensive

It may not be that cheap to get to Nepal (depending on where you’re coming from), but once you’re there, you can live like a king. We paid for an “expensive” hotel room and it cost all of $10.00. You can eat a full meal for less than $2.00. In fact, the only thing that’s even remotely expensive is alcohol. A beer still costs a few dollars – not as much as Western prices, but probably the most expensive thing on the menu. Even all of the aforementioned outdoor activities are dirt cheap compared to what you’d pay in a Western country.

4) The Nicest People

There are some things in Nepal that will take you time to get used to. Like the honking. And the spitting. But once you realize those are simply a part of the culture, Nepali people are some of the most open, welcoming, generous people we’ve had the privilege of meeting. Our host family gave us anything we needed during our time with them, and any other family would’ve done the same.

volunteer-in-nepal-host-family

Our incredible host family.

Nepalis love visitors, and often times, a random stranger on the road would strike up a conversation to make sure we were enjoying our time in Nepal. Where else do you find that kind of heart?

5) The Surroundings

This one should be self-explanatory. You’re in the middle of the Himalayas. THE FREAKING HIMALAYAS. The highest mountains in the world cross right through Nepal. 8 of the world’s 10 tallest mountains grace the horizon and offer a naturally beautiful view every time you look up. You need to see the Himalayas with your own eyes at least once. No other mountain range in the world comes close. Not the Alps. Not the Rockys. And not the Andes. This is the icing on the cake in terms of reasons to volunteer, but when you see Annapurna 1 (26,545 feet) or Mt. Everest (29,029 feet) with your own eyes, you’ll know exactly what I mean when you volunteer in Nepal.

volunteer-in-nepal-ABC

A view of some of the tallest mountains in the world.

-O.L.

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2 Responses to “5 Reasons Why You Should Volunteer in Nepal”

  • That looks so rewarding. I really want to do the Annapurna loop from Pokhora. Where in Nepal where you based?

    • We were in Pokhara! We actually did the trek to Annapurna Base Camp, which is a 7-8 day hike. You can add on Poon Hill to make it an 11-12 day hike. The Annapurna loop is 25 days, so we simply didn’t have the time because we wanted to focus on volunteering. That region is amazing!!

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