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How much does a trip to Nepal cost? What is the average backpacking in Nepal budget?
When I was preparing for my journey around the world, I asked myself this question as well and if you search online, you will discover a wide variety of answers because every trip is different.
The length of your trip, the activities you want to do, where you choose to stay, and the mode of transportation can all have a significant impact on the total cost.
That’s why I have included the exact expenses of these categories in this article so that you can get an idea of how much a trip to Nepal costs and it might help to plan your adventure.
READ ALSO: Backpacking in Nepal: the perfect 3 weeks in Nepal itinerary
What is not included
This cost breakdown does not include the expenses for flights, insurance, and luggage. However, to give you an impression of what to expect, I listed down the prices that I paid for my flights and backpack.
Flights to Kathmandu are between €500 – 700 for return flights from most European countries and I mostly use Skyscanner to find the best options.
Since I visit Nepal as part of my world trip, I was traveling with a Deuter 70L backpack which I purchased at AsAdventure in Belgium. If you travel long-term, it is important to get a backpack that feels comfortable and light.
- International flights: I bought a return flight from Kuala Lumpur to Kathmandu for €370 per person with Malaysian Airlines
- Travel insurance – VisitorCoverage
- Purchase of backpack: For this trip, I used a Deuter Aircontact 70L, which cost about €250, and the Wandrd camera bag costs about €227 (read at the end of this article what’s in my camera bag)
Accommodation in Nepal
In 22 days, I’ve spent €511 on accommodation in Nepal, which is an average of €23 per night and it’s pretty close to €20 per night that I had estimated. By using booking.com you often have great deals or discounts with a free cancelation option.
During the trekkings in the mountains, you’ll stay in a camp or lodge run by local families for only a few Euros. I paid an average of €5 per night during the Poonhill and Mardi Himal Trek.
Having a guide during the trekking in Nepal is also very useful as they know the local camps and teahouses and they can assist you to get a room in advance.
After a few days of hiking, it is also nice to have more comfort and luxury, so I booked the Sapana Village Lodge, a lovely safari lodge in Chitwan National Park, and the last night in Nagarkot, I stayed at the Hotel Country Villa, which had spectacular views and an amazing terrace overlooking the valley.
- 12 nights in hotels – average €20/night
- 2 nights in a safari lodge – €72/night
- 6 nights in teahouses – average €5/night
- 1 night in a guesthouse – average €15/night
- 1 night in a luxury hotel – average €82/night
READ MORE: 15 x best hotels in Nepal
Transport in Nepal
Traveling by local transport in Nepal is really easy as there are tourist buses that run from Kathmandu to practically every other city or town in the country. The buses are quite comfortable and they make also several stops along the way to buy some snacks or stretch your legs.
When you eventually arrive at the bus stop of your destination, you can grab a taxi to your hotel, which is also very affordable, although, you might have to bargain a bit.
When you plan to go hiking in the mountains of the Annapurna region, consider going with a jeep that takes you to the beginning of the trek instead of the local buses. The Jeeps are a bit more expensive but way more convenient and reliable than the local bus.
Also, the roads leading up to the mountains are in very poor condition and after heavy rains these roads are often muddy, making it nearly impossible to reach by local transport.
During my 3 weeks in Nepal, I spent a total of €183 on transport (for 2 people), which is an average of €8,5 per day. Below are some examples of the transport that I used and the prices that I paid.
- 8 buses
- Tourist bus from Kathmandu to Pokhara – NPR 800 / 5,6 per person
- Tourist bus from Pokhara to Chitwan – NPR 700 / €5 per person
- Local bus from Bhaktapur to Nagarkot – NRP 60 / €0,5 per person
- 6 taxis
- Taxi from the Airport to Kathmandu – Thamel – NRP 700 / €5
- Taxi from Kathmandu to Bhaktapur – NRP 1000 / €7
- 4 jeeps
- From Pokhara to the start of the Mardi Himal Trek – NRP 3000/Jeep / €21 – return trip
- From Kimche to Pokhara after the Poon Hill Trek – NRP 4000/Jeep / €28 – return trip
- 1 flight (my flight was canceled 3 days in a row and in the end, I decided to head back to Pokhara and I received a refund)
- Return flight from Kathmandu to Lukla – US$ 350 per person
Food & groceries in Nepal
I went out daily for lunch, and dinner in local restaurants and most hotels where I stayed provided free breakfast. Even though, the total budget for food and groceries is just € 606 for two persons in 22 days exploring the country. That’s an average of €27,6 per day.
During the trekkings in the Annapurna region, delicious authentic and local food was served at the camp or in local teahouses for extremely low prices.
You can easily discover great restaurants serving amazing traditional food but also Western restaurants are widely spread in major cities like Pokhara and Kathmandu.
- Eating out – € 544
- Acai Bowl – NPR 400 / €2,8
- Hummus plate – NPR 240 / €1,7
- Rainbow salad – NPR 330 / €2,3
- Vegan Pasta Bolognese – NPR 370 / €2,6
- Beer – NPR 400 / €1,5
- Porridge with honey and apple in a mountain camp – NPR 240 / €1,7
- Groceries – $66
- Purify tablets to drink safe water at all times – NPR 220 / €1,5 for 50 tablets
- Snacks for during our trekkings – NPR 480 / €3,5 for a box of 8 mountain bars
Excursions and adventures in Nepal
NOTE: From April 2023, it is not allowed anymore for foreigners to hike without a guide. TIMS and ACAP Permits will no longer be issued without a registered guide.
The majority of tourists visit Nepal with the intention of hiking or trekking into the Himalayan peaks, but the country also offers a huge variety of other activities. This is another reason why Nepal is an ideal destination for every kind of traveler.
Prices in Nepal are relatively cheap and the biggest cost is probably the permit that you need to enter the Annapurna Conservation Area and the guide (if you hire one). I spent €737 in 22 days for two persons, which is an average of €33,5 per day.
- The Swayambhunath Stupa or the Monkey Temple entrance fee – NPR 200 / €1,4 per person
- Entrance fee for Boudhanath Stupa, one of the holiest sites in the world NPR 400 / €2,8 per person
- Kathmandu Durbar Square fee – NPR 800 / €5,6 per person
- Entrance fee of the UNESCO World Heritage City of Bhaktapur – NPR 1500 / €10,6 per person
- 4D/3N Mardi Himal Trek – €85 for a guide and NPR 10.000 / €70 for permits (2 persons)
- 4D/3N Poon Hill Trek – €85 for a guide and NPR 10.000 / €70 for permits (2 persons)
- Jeep Safari in Chitwan NP – € 140 per person
- A morning jungle walk – €42 per person
- A guided Tharu village tour in Chitwan – €7,5 per person
Since I was traveling around the world without any hiking equipment, I had to either buy or rent whatever was needed for multiday hikes such as shoes, a jacket, and a sleeping bag, …
Most of the equipment was easy to find in the affordable trekking gear shops in Kathmandu and Pokhara. My partner and I spent €256 on gear that we purchased and €5,5 on two sleeping bags that we rented but didn’t use as the trek to Mount Everest Basecamp was canceled.
The total cost for the trekking gear was €261 for 2 people, which is an average of €11,9 per day. below is the list of the items that I purchased, including the prices I paid for them.
Trekking gear for Mik
- 1 x hiking pants – NRP 1800 / €13
- A thermal pants – NRP 1400 / €9,9
- 1 x dry fit long sleeve shirt – NRP 1400 / €9,9
- 1 x dry-fit shirt – NRP 1200 / €8,5
- Fleece jacket – NRP 1800 / €13
- A pair of gloves – NRP 300 / €2,1
- 2 pairs of socks – NRP 120 / €0,85
- 1 pair of hiking shoes – NRP 4000 / €28 and sold for NRP 2500 / €17,6 because I didn’t use them
Trekking gear for my partner
- 1 x hiking pants – NRP 1800 / €13
- A thermal pants – NRP 1800 / €13
- A thermal shirt – NRP 2800 / €19,7
- 1 x dry fit long sleeve – NRP 1800 / €13
- 2 x dry-fit shirts – NRP 1600 / €11,3
- Fleece jacket – NRP 1800 / €13
- A buf – NRP 150 / €1
- 1 pair of gloves – NRP 300 / €2,1
- 2 pairs of socks – NRP 1250 / €0,85
- 1 x jacket Patagonia – NRP 5500 / €39
- 1 pair of hiking shoes – NRP 4000 / €28 and sold for NRP 2500 / €17,6 because didn’t use them
TIP: At the end of our journey, we had no space in our backpacks for the new clothes we had purchased so we decided to donate it to the people that were affected by the earthquake in 2015.
We spent roughly €132 on miscellaneous expenses for 2 people in 3 weeks traveling across the country. Expenses such as obtaining a visa, a SIM card, doing laundry, and other extra costs.
These are mostly small expenses but they should be considered while planning your trip and in order to give you an idea of the prices, I’ve included some examples below:
- Visa – We obtained a 30-day visa on arrival and paid US$50 per person
- 15 days – $30
- 30 days – $50
- 90 days – $125
Check here the visa costs for your own country
- SIM cards & data package from “NCell” (30 days) – NPR 2000 / €14 for 16GB + 16 min calls to the same provider and we topped up with a 7-day package – NPR 300 / €2 for 4GB per person.
- Souvenirs & tips – €21
- Laundry – NPR 100 / €0,7 per kg for washing and folding
How much does a trip to Nepal cost?
€ 2430 is the total amount that my partner and I spent during 3 weeks in Nepal. Even though the average of €55 per day per person is a bit higher than the estimated €40 per day that I had calculated but it was worth every cent!
Most of the budget was spent on activities and food, but these were without a doubt the best things in this amazing country. The food is great, and visiting temples, hiking in the Annapurna region, and going on a jungle safari in Chitwan are among the top things to do in Nepal.
Because I was traveling around the world and didn’t have any hiking gear with me, I had to rent or buy everything, which was obviously an extra cost. However, if you visit Nepal as part of your annual holiday, you can definitely bring a lot of gear from home and you don’t have to purchase it over there.
Unfortunately, due to the poor weather conditions, I was not able to make it to the base camp of Mount Everest on this journey, which was a significant goal that was on my bucket list.
Nevertheless, Is is a beautiful country full of adventures and unique experiences.
I will absolutely visit Nepal again, and if you have any suggestions or questions, please leave them in the comments.
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Read more articles about Nepal
Nepal Budget: How much does a trip to Nepal cost?
Use my favorite travel apps to plan your budget for your Nepal itinerary
To plan my adventures, I use these FREE websites and apps as they provide the best information, the best deals, and they are user-friendly.
- Skyscanner – Flight deals
- Booking.com – Hotels and accommodation
- TourRadar – Group trips
- TripAdvisor – Reviews and activities
- HostelWorld – Hostels
- GetYourGuide – Activities and excursions
- RentalCars – Car rental
- Omio – Transport
- iVisa – Travel documents
- Wise – Money transfer
- VisitorCoverage – Travel Insurance
PICTURES AND EDITING
All the pictures on this page are made and owned by me. If you are interested in some pictures to use for your magazine, website, blog, or any other purpose, just send me an email and we’ll figure it out.
Do you like the edits? My Presets will be online soon so you can edit your pictures in just one click!
The camera gear I used for this trip
I never go out without my camera and many people ask me which gear I use. So to make it quite easy, I listed all the gear I used for this trip below.
Most of the time, I travel with the Sony A7III and the Sony 24-105mm/f4 as my primary lens but depending on the location, I change to another setup. However, I love the Tamron 17-28 to shoot in the big cities.