Our grading system explained
- Expedition Grade
Travelling to far-flung destinations on an adventurous holiday is often a once-in-a-lifetime experience and can give rise to many questions about what to expect. At Mountain Kingdoms we provide all the help, advice and reassurance you need from first contact to return. Here is some essential information about the services we offer that ensure you will have the best possible holiday experience.
We get asked lots of questions by our clients about what they should expect on their holiday, here's some of the most common queries and our answers.
What size will my group be?
Each of our group departures has a minimum number of travellers required to get the trip up and running as well as a maximum number for the group. In most cases the maximum group size is 12 people the only trips for which we exceed this number are Family Adventures and Gentle Trekking & Luxury Lodges, Annapurna Foothills (as the lodges each have 8 rooms). On a handful or our community-based trips we have a smaller maximum number to minimise the impact we make.
Minimum and maximum group sizes can be found on each individual holiday page, as well as on all our downloadable holiday itineraries. If you want to find out how many people have booked onto a specific trip then just contact the office.
Who travels with Mountain Kingdoms
Here are some statistics about our group composition, based on our 2016 holiday bookings:
Male - 45% Female - 55%
0-19 yrs old = 1%
20-29 yrs old = 1%
30-39 yrs old = 3%
40-49 yrs old = 8%
50-59 yrs old = 28%
60-69 yrs old = 44%
70-90 yrs old = 15%
Who will lead my trip
The majority of our holidays are led by English speaking Local Leaders; exploring in the company of a local, being one of the best ways to really discover the culture, heritage and everyday life of a new destination. On well-traveled trails in Bhutan, India and Nepal youre likely to be led by a Sirdar or Sherpa guide such as KC Bhuwan, winner of the Wanderlust Paul Morrison Guide Award, or Phura Dorjee Sherpa, an Everest summitteer. In other parts of the world your Local Leader may be a qualified naturalist, a professional mountaineer or a cultural expert.
In destinations with limited tourist infrastructure, and on long treks into very remote regions, you will be led by a Mountain Kingdoms Appointed Leader. These western leaders usually work alongside a local guide and often have particular expertise in the region they are visiting. For instance, trekking guide author, Kev Reynolds, or Michael Rutland who has spent many years living in Bhutan.
Please see individual holiday pages to find out whether you will have a Local or Mountain Kingdoms Appointed Leader.
We will give you lots of information before you travel about inoculations and physical preparation for your trip. We will also ask you to complete a medical questionnaire covering general health and fitness. Occasionally we may refer these to our company doctor for review, or ask a client to confirm their fitness to travel with a letter from their own doctor. If you are aged 70 years and over you will need to submit a letter from your doctor confirming your fitness to travel.
Our trekking holidays are designed to allow gradual height gain, spread over a number of days. There is no way of predicting who will suffer from altitude but, for the vast majority of people, a slow ascent to height will produce minimal effects. On a few high altitude treks we carry a Gamow Bag as a precautionary measure.
The dossier pack that we send to you when you book your holiday includes comprehensive advice on safe travel at altitude. If you would like to find out more about the effects of altitude and the best preventative measures, then please visit the website of the research charity Medex and download their excellent booklet called 'Travel at High Altitude'. For treks involving travel above 4,000m/13,120ft, we'd strongly recommend that you read this booklet before you travel. You can also call our office and speak to an experienced member of our team.