Honey Hunters of Nepal

Honey Hunters of Nepal Experience

Follow The Incredible  Journey Of  The Legendary  Himalayan Wild Honey Hunters Of  Nepal And  Explore The Full Moon Carnival. Honey hunting is one of the many activities that form part of the ancient culture of numerous civilizations. Scientists have estimated through rock painting documentation that honey hunting was practiced as far back as 13 000 BC. In Nepal, honey hunting has been practiced for thousands of years and is a vital part of the Nepali culture. Watching documentaries on honey hunting in Nepal allows viewers to gain insight into this practice, but fortunately travelers are now able to join honey hunting expeditions and experience this tradition for themselves.

The Gurung tribesmen of Nepal are master honey hunters, risking their lives collecting honeycomb in the foothills of the Himalayas, using nothing more than handmade rope ladders and long sticks known as tangos. Most of the honey bees' nests are located on steep inaccessible, south-west facing cliffs to avoid predators and for increased exposure to direct sunlight.

A honey hunter clings precariously to a rope ladder while he waits for the rising smoke to drive thousands of angry Apis Laboriosa, the largest honey bee in the world, out of their nests. Despite this being a team effort – up to a dozen men are drafted in to support the hunter or ‘kuiche’ - there is silence, pressure and precision.

Engulfed by the thick, acrid smoke, the hunter jousts tentatively at a nest with a bamboo stick with a sickle or wooden plate at one end, cutting the exposed honeycomb away from the cliff face. Using another stick to guide the basket hanging beside him, he catches the honeycomb as it falls before the basket is then lowered to the ground.

Ghantu Dance ( The Full Moon Carnival) is performed on the full moon of April-May for a week. The word Ghantu is believed to derive from the Nepali word ‘ghat’ meaning ‘cremation ground’. The Ghantu dance and songs are folk-based and  follow the lyrics of the songs. These dances are not rehearsed but are completely spontaneous. It is believed that only a girl with a pure soul is given the opportunity to perform. The instruments used are folk instruments like madal and mujura. A special crown made of China berry or Persian bead flower, found abundantly during that period, is worn during the dance.

A once in a life time experience in the Lamjung Regions of the Himalaya.  

Day 1 : Kathmandu Arrival. Arrival  before  2:00 p.m  fly directly to Pokhara  ( stay at  Dalai La /  Waterfront resort or the likes ). Arrival  after  2:00 p.m  Overnight stay in a boutique hotel   -  ( Dalai La /  Vajra  /  Vaishali or the likes )  

Day 2 : Kathmandu – Pokhara –  Ghalegaun.  Fly to Pokhara . Then drive to  Beshisahar , 4-5  hours in a A/C Toyota Hiace. Beshisahar  -  Ghalegaun  is a   2-3  hours drive in a 4 wheel SUV. Overnight   Home stay  with  Dinner at  Ghalegaun

Day 3:  Ghalegaun – Bhujung -  Full Moon Carnival. 2 – 3 hours of relaxed hike from Ghalegaun to Bhujung  for an  overnight at Home stay with all meals. 

Day 4 : Bhujung ( The full Moon Carnival). Experience the Ghatu Dance ( The full moon Carnival ) which will be held in the middle of the village. Home stay with  Breakfast , Lunch & Dinner  

Day 5 : Honey Hunting.  Journey with the Master Honey Hunter’s. Ceremonies & Rituals. Over Night Camping with Breakfast , Lunch & Dinner  

Day 6 : Bhujung – Pokhara – Kathmandu.  Drive from Bhujung to pokhara , fly to Kathmandu or drive back  ( Toyota  Hiace )  Overnight at Kathmandu   at  Patan Boutique Heritage  

Day 7 : Departure. Or extend your stay in Kathmandu  and a day tour can be arranged for you.

Cost Includes :

  • Accommodation & Meals  for all 6 days. ( Only Breakfast included in KTM & Pokhara )

  • Flight tickets KTM to Pokhara to KTM

  • All road transportation.

  • Porters & Guides 

  • Permit to ACAP 

  • Royalty to the Tribe & Hunters 

  • Photographers fees + travel + accommodation 

  • Guided Tour in Kathmandu on the last day

  • Comprehensive medical kit

  • Agency fees

Honey Hunter information from : nepal.com

Pics from : https://www.nationalgeographic.com/magazine/2017/07/honey-hunters-bees-climbing-nepal/