6 things I learned alone in Nepal.

When I booked my flights to Nepal, the fact I was planning a solo adventure didn't even cross my mind. When I told friends my travel plans, they often asked who I was going with in the first few questions. When I replied confirming my decision to travel alone, a few were shocked, a few were a little worried, and some were downright impressed that I was brave enough to go to a country like Nepal alone. 

While in retrospect, having someone close to me to share experiences with would have been wonderful, more time for introspection was incredibly valuable and the people I met on the way were there when I was feeling a little down. 

So, here's 6 things I learned alone in Nepal.

1)  Travelling alone never needs be lonely

Reading back over my diary in the last few days, I realised this came up again and again. Though meeting new people every day can get a little tiring and re- introductions a little tedious, there’s something so special about sharing something sacred with someone you just met. I can wholeheartedly say from all my travelling that it is often the people you meet that make the moment. That’s not to say that being alone is great too- but a shared experience can unite fellow travellers very quickly. Sitting round a table with four or five different nationalities, ages, religions and ideals can teach you so much about not only another way of life, but also a lot about yourself. I met digital nomads, people who had everything planned, people with no plans, a whole host of creatives and some simply amazing people.

Travelling alone makes you go out of your way to make friends because you are out of your comfort zone. 
For that reason, I’m so glad I decided to go it alone.

Days to yourself are precious and important - appreciate your own company

All those self-introductions can get to you a bit. No-one here knows you, you are wary of falling into the ‘when I was in …’ for something impressive to talk about (don’t worry, there will be at least one person who gives you a minute by minute account of their time in Africa) and you find yourself craving some alone time.
On those days, I woke up early, watched the sunrise from a rooftop, read my book and generally just soaked it all up in silence. 

Waking up in Pokhara

Nepal is the perfect country to lose yourself, in yourself. Go to yoga, do some meditation, visit a temple, the opportunities are endless.
And when you are done with sharing a room in a hostel, book into an Airbnb or a hotel for a well-deserved night of privacy.  

After a month in Nepal, I booked myself into this Airbnb in Kuala Lumpur on my layover to Japan. It was £12.

Squatting is a skill

Not used to the Nepalese style of toilets? Don’t worry, you become familiarised with all aspects of them pretty quickly…
All I can say is, come armed with soap, hand sanitizer and toilet paper to make the experience a little less traumatic.
It’s like you’re skiing, but without wanting to touch anything and there being a much greater danger should you fall.

By the end of the trip, all I can say is I was incredibly proficient. I won’t go any further, just be prepared for some interesting toilet stories to emerge. Everyone I met while travelling had at least one funny bathroom related incident. Make yours a good (bad?) one!

A smile and a thank you speak volumes

I am someone who loves learning languages. Wherever I go, I really try hard to learn some basic words and phrases. It is amazing how knowing even a little bit can get you so far. While being able to speak the language definitely makes things easier, it is the desire to speak a local language that is the real facilitator. Local people and shopkeepers will be really happy that an effort is being made, even if it is just knowing hello, goodbye and thank you. When you pair that with a smile, you’re on your way to having a much better day, as are the people you’re speaking with.

My lovely mountain guide and friend 

My host father and I on his motorbike

The amount of times I see foreigners engaging in hard bargaining without a smile! There’s only so far you can go like that. As soon as you are kind, polite and friendly, prices go lower. That said, don't smile to get things cheaper. It just happens to be a benefit of being a nice human being. So, wherever you go, go with a smile and a couple of local words up your sleeve.

Living with less is wonderful

Nepal was my month long stop over on the way to my year abroad in Japan, the true reason I started this blogging project. Because of that, I lugged around the most enormous suitcase. I lost count of the amount of people who looked at me with wide eyes and questioned what on earth I could possibly have in a bag that big, and why on earth I needed it all. 

I actually took very few things with me just for Nepal. It felt very freeing. I spent a lot of time in very light silk clothes, and scarves which I discovered to have thousands of uses. Meeting a girl who lost her bag in transit in India made me realise that even what I had, was still a lot. She arrived with simply the clothes on her back and had to buy everything again. I managed to lose some of my clothes to her which was a win-win for both parties. For any of my next travel trips, I want to pack light and really see what few things I need to live with. 

Mountains are very big and I am very small

I’ve raved about the wonders of the mountains already a lot on this blog, and countless times over on my Instagram. The mountains quite simply reset me. An escape from the city, an escape from yourself but also a place to listen to yourself. All of this with the most incredible backdrop of the Himalayas. It just put things into some serious perspective. Your boots are uncomfortable? There are locals doing it in flip flops. Your bag is heavy? There are porters with 50kg weighing on their necks. Your clothes aren’t clean? Imagine dragging a washing machine up these mountains! I would say I am a very fit person but there were 80 year olds overtaking me like it was their daily walk to the bus stop. It reminded me that my problems are largely irrelevant and just being able to be there, to pay for a guide, was enough to prove how fortunate I am and continue to be. 


  1. Hello! How did you get a female guide for your Poon Hill trek and which company is she from? I'm a solo female traveller and I'd love to have a female guide as my companion :D

    Love your posts!

  2. Hi there! Thanks for following my travels :)
    The company is called Three Sisters. It's a very well known company that provides female guides for female travellers. There's an office on the main high street in Pokhara and you can go into the shop to get a quote very easily. I actually went directly to the guide without going through the company so it was a bit cheaper. If you'd like the contact information of the guide, send me an email to halfaplanetfromhome@gmail.com and I can link you up on Facebook with my guide. She was absolutely lovely!
    Safe travels - the Poon Hill trek was absolutely incredible and I hope you love it as much as I did!
    Molly x


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