Part 4: A deeper look at Off Track Planet’s Top 10 Backpacking Travel Destinations for 2010

After taking a look at Parts 1-3, here are the last few parts of the series: A deeper look at Off Track Planet’sTop 10 Backpacking Travel Destinations for 2010. In this series I have been trying to match stories on GoNOMAD with their list to give readers a more in depth look at where they may be looking to travel.

Today, we continue on with the next pick for adventurous destination: The Himalayas (Tibet,Bhutan,Nepal) Off Track Planet says “A hike through the Himalayas not only awakens your physical sense of adventure but also connects you to a spiritual world unlike any other.”

At GoNOMAD, all three places have been written about, as well as The Himalayas as a whole. Each have their own unique stories to tell that seem to fit the criteria for Off Track Planet.

Cooper Schraudenbach wrote Tibet:Exploring the Ancient Kingdom of Gu-ge which taps into the more spiritual side of adventure:

“Once you pay your fee, you can climb up stairs carved into the sandstone and explore the meditation caves, rooms that served as dwellings, temples, and even the palace complex at the top.

There are several well-preserved monasteries that the caretaker will unlock for you to explore. These are rather amazing in themselves, as they contain some of the best-preserved examples of Tibetan Buddhist art. It seems that during the Cultural Revolution in the 1960’s, the Chinese left much of Gu-ge undisturbed, as it was a “dead” kingdom and posed no direct ideological threat.”

Anna Etmanska wrote in Bhutan: A Visit to Taktshang Goemba, “The Tiger’s Nest” about an adventure through a village and a hike up to a monastery built on the edge of a cliff:

“The trail climbed through pine trees and rhododendrons, switchbacking steeply upwards, and my guide explained that freshly arrived tourists should walk slowly, because the altitude can be quite challenging.”

William L. Pohl wrote Trekking the Annapurna Circuit in Nepal: Change on the Horizon giving a scenic tour of his trek through words and pictures, warning this trek is not for the high maintenance traveler:

“Unlike today’s well-heeled expeditions whose porters hump in everything from filet mignon and wine, Herzog’s team didn’t have the benefit of very modern equipment or accurate maps.It took weeks just to trend into the Annapurna wilderness, and once there they had to give up on a plan to summit 26,795-foot Dhaulagiri (The Mountain of Storms), its glistening slopes of rock and ice unassailable.” 

Some other write ups about the Himalayas include Biking from Tibet to Nepal: The Longest Descent in the World by Rebecca Gados and Spiti Valley: The Middle of the Mystic Himalayas by David Rich.

Hopefully among these writers you can find your perfect adventure in the Himalayas as well.