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India: Home of the Dalai Lama & Hospice Project

4th Oct 2025 - 14th Oct 2025

11 days/India /Moderate to Challenging


Take on this four-day trek through the Indian Himalayas and home of the Dalai Lama – Dharamshala. You will also get the chance to spend two days giving back to the community at our hospice project.

You start your challenge in Delhi where you have a short city tour before boarding the overnight train to Pathankot. After a night on the train you transfer to the stunning hill station of Dharamshala, home to the Tibetan Government in exile and the Dalai Lama, and surrounded by dense forest and in the shadow of the Dhauladhar mountain range. From here you will commence your journey into the Lesser Himalayan range of Northern India where, during four days of trekking, you will be awed by lush green forests, views of snow-capped peaks, deep valleys, gushing rivers and small villages with friendly and welcoming local people. You will reach a maximum altitude of 2842m (at Triund) and will walk approximately 14km per day, taking around 6-8 hours. After your trek ends you will return to Delhi and enjoy a celebratory meal together before flying home.

You don’t have to fundraise to join an open challenge but you can support a charity of your choice if you wish. See the costs tab for more details.

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The trek is graded moderate to challenging as you will trek over varying terrain for up to 8 hours a day, carrying a small daypack which may weigh up to 6kg, and camping in basic campsites along the way. You will also be exposed to altitudes up to a maximum of 2843m (9327ft).

The trek is accompanied by professional English-speaking local guides who have an excellent knowledge of the local culture and hiking in the region. You will also be supported by a team of cooks and porters, a UK Different Travel Company tour manager. At the project you will be supported by a local project co-ordinator and staff.

The terrain will vary throughout the trek but in general will be undulating (uphill and downhill). There are very few flat sections so you should ensure your training includes plenty of hills. Underfoot there will be stony pathways, grass, rocks and perhaps a few small streams to cross too. Each day you will cover approximately 12-15km (7-9 miles) which, because of the variable terrain, can take up to 8 hours to cover.

In Delhi temperatures can reach 33°C during the day, dropping to 17°C at night. The temperature in Dharamshala and during the trek is cooler with temperatures of approx. 20-28°C during the day, dropping down to approx. 0°C at night.

Temperatures will depend on the weather which vary and can be bright and sunny, rainy, cloudy or humid. Please note that conditions in mountainous regions are unpredictable so you should be prepared for all climatic eventualities.

Although the conditions mentioned are historically accurate, climate change can impact the seasons so you may experience uncharacteristic weather during the trip which is out of our control. The guides will assess the situation and make decisions to ensure the best enjoyment and ultimately safety of the group as a whole.

Meals during the trek are cooked by your trek chef and will be eaten in a mess tent where a table, chairs, plates, mugs and cutlery is provided. Meals are delicious and plentiful and mainly Indian style (although there may be some Western-style meals).

Special dietary requirements can be accommodated if we are advised in advance but please note that we cannot guarantee that food preparation will have taken place in a contamination free environment.

During the trek you will stay in 3-man tents (two people to a tent). You will be provided with sleeping mats but you are welcome to bring your own if you prefer.

While in Delhi and Dharamshala you will stay in hotels on a twin or triple share basis.

Toilet facilities at camp will be a hole dug into the ground with a small privacy tent surrounding it. Toilet paper is not provided so you will need to bring your own; please consider biodegradable toilet paper. To use the toilet during the trek you will find a private area off the main trail; any toilet paper you use along the trail must be placed into a nappy sack and disposed of properly at camp. You must NEVER leave toilet paper or other litter (including fruit peel, seeds, food wrappers etc.) on the trail. At the hotels there will be flushing Western-style sit-down toilets.

The trek can be undertaken by anyone with a good level of fitness, who is healthy and determined. Adequate preparation, planning and training is important because the fitter you are the more you will enjoy this experience. An ideal candidate would be a hill walker, an open-minded person with a sense of adventure or someone who would like to take part in a life-changing fundraising experience in the beautiful Indian countryside.

You must be at least 18 years old to participate on this trek. It may be possible for you to participate if you are 16 or 17 years old but you must be accompanied by a parent or guardian. There is no upper age limit

It is recommended that you are of a good fitness level before departure to ensure fast recovery from each day’s exertions. An ideal candidate would be someone who enjoys being out of their comfort zone and trying something new, with a flexible and open minded personality. If you do not regularly exercise it is advised that you start training before departure to ensure your best chance of enjoyment on the trip.

Whilst it is difficult to specifically prepare for trekking at higher altitudes, it helps to be physically prepared for the exertions of the trekking day by training in advance. It is advised that you arrive for the trek feeling comfortable trekking for periods of up to 7 or 8 hours for at least two days consecutively. Having a positive and determined attitude is also a key element to your success on the trek.


Home of the Dalai Lama Trek and community project itinerary

Day 1 (Saturday 4 October 2025):

London – Delhi

Depart the UK for Delhi on an overnight flight.

Day 2 (Sunday 5 October 2025):

Delhi – Pathankot
Upon arrival in Delhi you will transfer to a central hotel where some rooms will be available to relax and freshen-up.  After lunch we will enjoy a sightseeing tour of Delhi before transferring to the Railway Station for the overnight train to Pathankot.
Meals: Lunch and dinner

Day 3 (Monday 6 October 2025):

Pathankot – Dharamshala
We will arrive in Pathankot this morning before transferring to Dharamsala by road. On arrival in this Himalayan hill resort, the abode of the Dalai Lama, we will check in at the hotel check in at the hotel and enjoy the rest of the day at leisure. It is a fascinating place to explore, with visits to the Dalai Lama Palace and the Tibetan Government-in-exile recommended. Enjoy a traditional Tibetan dinner this evening.
Meals: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

Day 4 (Tuesday 7 October 2025):

Dharamshala – Sahpur – Salli – Kareri
This morning we drive for approximately 1.5 hours to Salli Village, from where we start the trek. A slow and gradual climb from there takes us to the top of the hill from where we start our ascent towards the Kareri stream.  Following the stream we then stop for the night near Kareri Village, camping in a beautiful and peaceful spot by the river.
Trekking: Approx. 6km/5 hours

Meals: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

Day 5 (Wednesday 8 October 2025):

Kareri – Bahl
After a hearty breakfast we start our day’s walk with a relatively steep ascent through several small villages, enjoying fine views of beautiful meadows and dense pine forests along the way.  We descend to a mountain stream to stop for lunch before continuing with a sharp ascent to Bahl, and our second campsite.
Trekking: Approx. 9km/6 -7 hours
Meals: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

Day 6 (Thursday 9 October 2025):

Bahl – Triund
Today’s trek takes us on a steep ascent through a mixed forest of oak, rhododendron and cedar trees, stopping at a local chai shop along the way.  After lunch our ascent continues along a winding path until we finally reach Triund, an alpine meadow situated on top of a ridge from which we’ll have amazing views of the peaks of Dhauladhar on one side and the Kangra valley on the other.  A perfect spot to enjoy the sunset and our final night under canvas!
Trekking: Approx. 12km/8 hours
Meals: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

Day 7 (Friday 10 October 2025):

Triund – Mcleodgunj – Pathankot
After waking early to witness the sun rising over the mighty Dhauladhar Mountain Range we set off, taking a different route back. Initially it’s a gradual descent over a grassy ridge for a few kilometers, then a steep descent taking us down to the Bhagsu waterfall where we stop to enjoy lunch. A further short walk brings us to Bhagsu village where we end our trek and return to Pathankot to take the overnight train back to Delhi.
Trekking: Approx. 6km/4 hours
Meals: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

DAY 8 (Saturday 11 October 2025):

We arrive in Delhi this morning and transfer to our hotel to check in. We won’t be resting on our laurels as we get started on the next part of the challenge at a local project this afternoon.
Meals: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

Days 9 – 10 (Sunday 12 – Monday 13 October 2025):

Community Project
We will spend the next two days assisting at a local project. We have links with several projects in Delhi including a centre for the Cankids children’s hospice. Previous activities have included painting and decorating bedrooms, building a children’s playground, refurbishing a kitchen and dining room, and improving therapy centres. The work we carry out is based on the needs of the community at the time.
Meals: Breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Day 11 (Tuesday 14 October 2025):

Delhi – London
Transfer to the airport for the return flight to the UK.
Meals: Breakfast

N.B. This itinerary may change due to unusual weather, the ability of the group, wildlife movements and so on. We will do our best to keep to the itinerary but we cannot be held responsible for changes that occur outside of our control. In all circumstances your guide and tour leader will have the final say in the interest of the group’s health and safety.   

Costs & How to pay

Registration fee: £395
and then either…

Self-funded: £1995


Sponsorship: £3990


Flexi: £1995 trip costs and £1995 sponsorship for a charity of your choice


This option is for those who choose to pay the trip costs (flights, accommodation, food, guides etc.) themselves. There is no sponsorship required although if you wish to raise sponsorship for a charity you are welcome to do so.

  • A registration fee is payable at the time of booking.
  • Trip cost balance is payable to Different Travel 10 weeks prior to departure.
  • You are welcome to fundraise separately for any charity of your choice but this is not mandatory. Any fundraising undertaken cannot be used for your trip costs.


This option is for those who wish to raise sponsorship to cover both the costs of the trip (flights, accommodation, food, guides etc.) and a donation to their chosen charity. There is a minimum sponsorship amount for each trip that you are required to raise in order to participate.

  • A registration fee is payable at the time of booking.
  • The minimum sponsorship must be paid to the charity 12 weeks prior to departure.
  • The amount the charity receives is at least 50% of the minimum sponsorship total.


This option is for those who choose to pay the trip costs (flights, accommodation, food, guides etc.) themselves while still raising some funds for the charity.

  • A registration fee is payable at the time of booking.
  • Trip cost balance is payable to Different Travel and your fundraising is payable to the charity 10 weeks prior to departure.
  • Any fundraising undertaken cannot be used for your trip costs.

*If your chosen charity is not on this list, please seek permission to fundraise for them by taking part in this challenge before making your booking.

What's included

  • Return flights from London (inc taxes and charges)
  • Local transfers and transport
  • Accommodation in hotels in Delhi, overnight sleeper trains and camping on trek
  • All meals as specified
  • Trek permits
  • English-speaking local guides and trek support crew
  • Different Travel UK tour manager

What's not included

  • Any necessary vaccinations
  • Indian e-tourist visa (currently US$27.50)
  • Drinks (incl bottled water), laundry and personal expenses
  • Spending money (tips and gratuities, souvenirs)
  • Personal trek kit
  • Travel insurance

Got a Question?

If you’ve a question about this challenge that you can’t find the answer to within the given information then complete this quick form and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible.