project review

Caught the Travel Bug

Review submitted by Polly Foster
Review date 17 Nov 2016


My trip to Nepal was the first time I had ever been abroad alone, and I had only been on a plane once before in my life! Needless to say I felt a little apprehensive as I landed in Kathmandu but I soon met the Frontier representative and a fellow volunteer at the airport and my fears vanished!

After a short but manic drive through the colourful streets we arrived at the guesthouse. I shared an en suite room with another female volunteer in our group, which was comfortable although we were often woken up by the barking dogs that roam the city early in the morning! The guesthouse had a small kitchen that served very welcome and delicious meals, and was only across the road from a shop that sold bottled water. Very convenient!

For the first few days we learned some Nepali language, which was surprisingly easier than it sounds! The locals appreciated it when we tried to practise our new linguistic skills with them. We were also taken on guided tours of a number of local sites.

After the introduction to Nepali life it was time for the group to break off into our individual projects. I decided to pay to spend three days in the calm greenery of the hills, which was my favourite part of the trip. We stayed in an adorable one-roomed house, just big enough for two beds and an en suite bathroom. It was the most amazing experience to wake up to the sounds of elephants in the nearby jungle! However the wildlife was not limited to the outside! On the first night we made the mistake of leaving our bags outside the mosquito nets and in the morning they were covered in ants. Other housemates sharing the room with us included a few lizards and a rat that lived in the bathroom! While there we got the opportunity to go on a jungle safari and ride in a wooden canoe down the river. Don’t forget your camera because you’ll want to spend all day taking photos of the cute baby elephants!

Then it was time to take the bus back to Kathmandu where I was spending a week at an orphanage. My work generally involved helping the children with their homework, and playing games. The children had very few toys and possessions, so a bag of balloons and some glitter glue can really go a long way! The children were at school in the middle of the day, so I had a lot of time to wander around, buy bottles of water and make good use of the internet café.

All too soon my two weeks were over and I had to go home. I met a lot of different people on this trip, experienced a totally different culture and country to my own, and was able to give something back through volunteering. I would recommend it to anyone. Thanks to this trip I have certainly caught the travelling bug, and I’m already thinking about my next adventure!


Read more about the Nepal Teaching & Community Work project.