Nepal Monastery Experience
Teach English to Nepalese monks
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Group Size: Varies. Avg 1-8
Trip code: ASIM
Duration: 2-8 weeks
Himalayan views, sacred temples, lush jungle and an overriding sense of mysticism – Nepal really is a special place. Get off the tourist trail and experience this eastern paradise like a local, with a volunteer placement teaching English to young monks in a monastery. Live and eat with the monks, joining prayer and meditation sessions as well as playing games with the novices in the evenings. Explore your spectacular surrounding area in your spare time. It’s an unforgettable cultural experience, where you can leave knowing that you made a real difference to the local community during your stay.
- Kick off your experience with a few days exploring the sights and sounds of Kathmandu
- Stay in an atmospheric Buddhist monastery
- Make a real difference to the local community by teaching English to young monks
- Take part in meditation and prayer sessions
- Explore beautiful Nepal in your free time
Orientation in Kathmandu
Your trip kicks off with a couple of days of orientation in a volunteer house around 20 minutes from the centre of Kathmandu. You’ll have plenty of time to explore the bustling city (get ready for a sensory overload!), immerse yourself in Nepalese life, and get to know the other volunteers.
We’ll set you up with everything you need for your placement, including:
- Language lessons
- Information about cultural and gender issues in Nepal
- Information about your placement
- Learning more about teaching English in Nepal
- Familiarising yourself with Nepalese food
- A city tour including Durbar Square, Pashupatinath, Buddhanath and Sayambhunath
The volunteer placement
You’ll take the public bus to your volunteer placement (usually within an hour or two of Kathmandu) and have an evening to get settled and meet some of the monks before starting in the classroom the next day.
You’ll start the day with a Nepalese style breakfast before spending 2-3 hours a day (Monday to Friday) teaching English to monks aged 7-18. Class sizes are small and will be divided by age. Outside of teaching time, you’ll be helping in the kitchen, library or anywhere else your assistance is needed. The evenings are lots of fun as you’ll be coordinating games and activities for the young monks.
As well as teaching and organising extra-curricular activities for the novice monks, you’ll be able to join prayer and meditation sessions. The placement is a really authentic experience and one that not many visitors to Nepal are privileged enough to get involved with.
During your free time you’ll be able to explore the beautiful surrounding area, heading into the countryside and discovering local villages and towns. There are lots of activities and excursions on offer as well, to locations such as Pokhara, Chitwan and Nagarkot.
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Most expensive: £1,132 December, 2023
Arrive at Kathmandu Tribhuvan International Airport (KTM) on your programme start date. A member of the local team will meet you from the airport and take you to the private house for your orientation.
You’ll need to arrange your return flight or onward travel on your programme end date.
You’ll spend your first couple of days (during your orientation) in a private house, around 20 minutes’ drive from the centre of Kathmandu. Rooms here are basic but comfy and there are Western-style toilets, hot water and WiFi (although WiFi might be slower than you’re used to!)
During your volunteer placement, you’ll be staying in the monastery that you’ve been placed in. You’ll share a (same sex) room with other volunteers and there’s one shared toilet and bathroom, which will be used by between 4 and 8 people. Bedding is provided, but you might like to bring a sleeping bag, especially during the cooler months.
Breakfast (9am) and dinner (7pm) are included while you’re at the monastery. Food is mostly Nepalese (think lentil curries and lots of spinach and potatoes) but the odd western influence may feature as well. You’ll need to arrange lunch and snacks yourself.
Please note that some dietary allergy requirements cannot be catered for on this particular trip. Please speak to a travel advisor if you have any specific dietary requirements.
Minimum age 18 years, maximum decided on participant’s health and fitness.
Tourist visas of 15, 30 and 90 days are available on arrival (at an additional cost). However, the visa system in Nepal remains changeable, so you’re advised to contact your nearest Embassy of Nepal before travelling. Your passport should be valid for at least 6 months from when you submit your visa application.
Please note: Visa requirements are subject to change so make sure you check before you travel.
DBS (Disclosure and Barring Service)
An enhanced DBS check is required for this programme. If you do not hold a certificate dated within 12 months of your programme start date, please contact us as we can help you arrange the DBS check for an extra fee. Please note, enhanced DBS (criminal record) checks can take 6-8 weeks to come back, so please ensure your start date allows enough time for your DBS check to be completed.