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Trip Review - Secrets of India & Nepal

Gecko’s traveller Sarah MacDonald from Melbourne visited Nepal and India earlier this year. She tells us about her wonderful adventure below:

“Enlightening and bewildering, fulfilling and exasperating, serenely peaceful and totally chaotic.” This was the first sentence I read when I looked into travelling to India and Nepal with Gecko’s and it really could not have been more spot on!

In May 2010, my partner and I took off on one of our best adventures yet, Secrets of Nepal and India. After always wanting to see the Taj Mahal we decided it was time to give her a visit, but what’s an international trip without a couple of stamps in your passport?  So it was decided we would visit Nepal and India!

Experiencing the Taj Mahal was more magnificent than I ever imagined, but my absolute favorite thing about our trip was our visits to the villages, both Hyenjakot and Tordi Garh. These were two of the most amazing places I have ever been. In Hyenjakot, we seemed to be a local attraction and all the children congregated to watch us. I had a wonderful experience with one young boy who couldn’t speak any English but still managed to teach me a few magic tricks, and another that drew pictures for me on rocks.

When we arrived in Tordi Garh we were greeted with some of the biggest smiles and waves I have ever seen. Wandering through the laneways I was captivated by the children. They were all shouting out “HELLO”, racing up with smiles from ear to ear, desperate to have their photo taken and see themselves on the camera screen. Another highlight was the food. The best meals of the trip were eaten in these villages – home cooked and eaten with our fingers!

Then there is the shopping! My favorite buy would have to be my sari. I couldn’t possibly have left India without purchasing one, while and my partner couldn’t leave without a cricket bat!

Finally, our leaders, Tulay in Nepal and Jimmy in India, were FANTASTIC!  Travelling with a local guide was one of the best parts of our trip.

Sarah’s hot tips for India are:

  • - Keep hydrated with lots of sealed, bottled water and re-hydration salts
  • - Carry some spare toilet paper with you.  The hotels we stayed in had very little. If you were unwell you would hate to be stuck without
  • - I never leave home without Vegemite; it comes in VERY handy if I get an upset stomach or need a snack on long travelling days

Sarah’s number one tip for travelling in India and Nepal is:

- Have fun and be prepared for everything and anything!

Thanks Sarah!  Sarah and her partner have travelled with Gecko’s three times in the past and are now deciding which African tour they’ll take on in the next year or so.  For sending in her review, Sarah has scored a $100 travel voucher to use towards her African adventure.  If you’d like to share your Gecko’s travel story with us, please email For any stories we publish, you’ll get a $100 voucher towards your next tour!