Nepali Times
Great escapes

Where: Tiger Mountain destinations are in Chitwan, Bardiya national parks and Pokhara, and have special offers for expats this season.
When: Until 28 October.
Package: Choose between a three-day-two-night package or four-day-three-night deal, at either Tiger Mountain Tharu Lodge or Tiger Tops Karnali Lodge or a combination of the two.
Cost: Prices range from Rs 10,000-25,000 per person including meals, activities such as elephant safaris, boat rides, jungle drives, bird watching, jungle walks, plus the services of experienced naturalists and jungle guides, taxes, and national park fees.
Special offer: Tiger Mountain Pokhara Lodge offers a per night rate of Rs 6,000 per head, inclusive of accommodation, meals, and in-house activities such as jungle walks, bird watching and village tours.
Contact: Tiger Mountain Pokhara Lodge, 4361500,

Where: Rhino Resort in Chitwan is reached by road, a flight into Bharatpur, or by a combination of a raft and wheels from Mugling.
When: Dasain
Package: Three day-two night package
Cost: Rs 3,000 on twin sharing basis
Contact: Rhino Resort, 4265454

Where: Gaida Wildlife Camp borders the rhino zone in the central area of Chitwan National Park. Drive to Sauraha, and the Camp folks will take care of you from there.
When: Dasain
Package: Three day-two night package
Cost: Couples pay Rs 5,999, and single Rs 2,999, inclusive of jungle activities
Contact: Gaida Wildlife Camp, 4215431, 4215407

Where: Temple Tiger Jungle Lodge in Chitwan offers discounted rates this season, as well as picnic lunches, barbecue dinners, and jungle activities.
When: Until 31 October
Package: Flexible Dasain and Tihar offers
Cost: Rs 5,400 per person per night
Contact: Temple Tiger Jungle Lodge, 4244651

Where: Le Meridian, Gokarna is a lush getaway in the heart of the forest, surrounded by green hills and a panoramic view of the mountains.
Package: Four-day-three night Dasain offer, two-night Golf Getaway, two-night weekend package, two-night Romantic Gokarna.
Cost: Offers range from Rs 10-15,000 for singles and Rs 12,000-18,000 for couples, and Rs 17,000 for the romantic getaway.
Contact: Le Meridien Kathmandu Gokarna Forest Golf Resort Spa, 4451212

Where: Park Village, Budhanilkantha, in the foothills of Shivapuri is spread over six acres of dense woodland, and is excellent for kite-flying.
When: Dasain
Package: Two day-one night package with full American breakfast and dinner, elaborate Dasain lunch, free use of pool, gym, and snooker, and 25 percent off steam, sauna, massage, and beverages.
Cost: Rs 2,100 per person on twin sharing basis, children under five free, children over 10 pay Rs 1,100
Contact: Park Village, 4375280

Where: Club Himalaya, Nagarkot is making up for the cancellation of Changa Chait by organising a pre-Dasain party, where kites can be flown.
Package: Chiso Chiso Hawama for Nepalis and expatriates offers one night, dinner, breakfast, and shuttle service.
When: Year-round
Cost: Single Rs 2,800, double Rs 3,400, not including taxes
Contact: Club Himalaya, 6680080/ 83

Where: Hyatt Regency, Kathmandu
When: Dasain
Package: Dasain Bonanza for Nepalis and residents, including massage, gym, pool, spa, buffet dinner and breakfast.
Cost: Rs 4,500 per person per night on twin sharing basis with two children
Contact: Hotel Hyatt Regency Kathmandu, 4491234,

Where: Godavari Village Resort is spread over 14 lush green acres and offers mountain views and traditionally-styled cottages and buildings overlooking rice fields.
When: Dasain
Package: Dasain overnight stay package
Cost: Rs 1,800 for one and Rs 2,500 for two
Contact: Godavari Village Resort, 5560675

There are literally scores of companies that organise treks to the popular Everest and Annapurna regions. Or, you could get a map and make your own way, stopping at teahouses and mingling with locals and other tourists.

In the decade since Kathmandu travel agents started offering international tours, they've specialised in leisure, pilgrimage, adventure, and honeymoon
tour packages. You can go anywhere, from Asian destinations like Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia, Myanmar, China, and Dubai. Farther afield are Australia, New Zealand, France, Switzerland, the US, Egypt, and Kenya. Special Dasain packages are selling out, and all depart in a few weeks.

Lalit Mandap specialises in East Asia and offers four packages this season:

Where: Thailand
Package: Eight days-seven nights in Bangkok and Pattaya featuring Coral Island, Nong Nooch Gardens, Tiger Zoo, Safari World, and Dream World
When: Tours depart on 29 September and 4 October
Cost: Rs 47,000 per person on twin sharing basis

Where: China
Package: Twelve days in Shanghai, Beijing, Nanjing, Wuxi, Suzhou, Hangzhou
When: Tour departs 7 October
Cost: Rs 68,0000 per person

Where: China
Package: Best of China, nine days in Shanghai, Beijing, Wuxi
When: Tour departs 30 September
Cost: Rs 60,000

Where: East Asia
Package: Oriental bonanza, nine days to Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand
When: Tour departs 29 September
Cost: Rs 92,000 per person on a twin/ triple basis

Lalit Mandap also offers domestic tour packages, priced according to the number of people. Packages include two days-one night to Nagarkot and Dhulikhel, day-long rafting on the Trisuli, one-day-one night camping, and rafting trips to Charaudi, Kurintar, Manakamana, available year-round.
Contact: Lalit Mandap Travel and Tours, 5546526

President Travels and Tours says its more popular trips include those to Macau, Mauritius, Turkey, Korea, and Cyprus. This holiday season, President Travels offers promotional packages.

Where: Bangkok, Singapore, Kuala Lumpur
When: Dasain
Package: Seven days-six nights Dasain dhamaka
Cost: Rs 55,000

Where: Egypt
Package: Eight days-seven nights in Cairo, Luxor, the West Bank, and Aswan including the pyramids, museums, a Nile cruise among other activities.
Cost: Rs 41,000 (not including airfare)

For both contact: President Travels and Tours, 4220245

Malaysia Dream Holidays offer numerous packages through Zenith Experiences Travel Services (4444076) and Marco Polo Travels (4247215).

Where: Kuala Lumpur, Genting and Penang
Package: Three nights in Kuala Lumpur, one in Genting, two in Penang
When: Year-round
Cost: $325 per person on twin sharing basis, $200 per person and child with bed, $162 per person and a child with no bed, $113 for single supplement

Where: Kuala Lumpur and Genting
Package: Three nights in Kuala Lumpur, two in Genting
When: Year-round
Cost: $250 per person on twin sharing basis, $170 per person and child with bed, $125 per person and a child with no bed, $94 for single supplement

Where: Famosa
Package: Two nights in Famosa
When: Year-round
Cost: $125 per person base on twin sharing basis, $113 per person and a child with bed, $100 per person and a child with no bed, $188 for singles

Where: Famosa
Package: One night in Famosa
When: Year-round
Cost: $93 per person base on twin sharing basis, $84 per person base and a child with bed, $64 per person and a child with no bed, $150 for singles

Where: Kuala Lumpur and Melaka
Package: Dasain special
When: Until end-November
Cost: Rs 13,999 per person on twin/ double/ triple sharing basis

Many fly-by-night firms offer trips to Tibet or just Lhasa. It's important you choose a reliable operator, and there are many choices to suit your budget. Among the choices are:

Where: Three days sightseeing and overland return to Kathmandu via Gyangtse, Xigatse, Tingri, Nyalam, and Zhangmu.
When: September and October
Package: The Lhasa Express, eight days
Cost: $855 per person for group of four, airfare not included.
Contact: Shangri La Tours / Himalayan Journeys, 4226138

If none of these floats your boat, Star Cruises might. Cruise packages are ex-Singapore and include accommodation on twin sharing basis, meals, and entertainment on board.

Where: Two nights Melacca/ Kuala Lumpur cruise
Cost: $340 per person on twin sharing basis, 50 percent discount available for second passenger.

Where: Three nights Penang/ Phuket cruise
Cost: $535 per person on twin sharing basis, 50 percent off for a second passenger.

Where: Five nights, straits of Melacca
Cost: $830 per person on twin sharing basis, 50 percent off for a second passenger.
When: Cruises sail 1 September-15 November.

(11 JAN 2013 - 17 JAN 2013)