Nepal is famous for having the world’s highest peaks, the Himalayas, and most travelers know the country is a hotspot for trekking, and likely have such a trip on their bucket list. But Nepal and trekking is much more than just big mountains. This ‘small’ Himalayan nation on the map would actually be about the size of the US if flattened out – it’s huge! In just 230km the country rises from its southern border at 70m to 8,848m in the north. That’s some serious vertical gain! The country has pretty much every climate covered and a lifetime of walking to be done. Our guest today, Robin Boustead, has been working on what must be one of the world’s longest walks for more than a decade, the Great Himalaya Trail. Going through Pakistan, India, Nepal, Bhutan and Tibet, it’s over 6,000km long and looks incredible. We chat with him about how the Trail came about and how travelers can enjoy it.

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Enjoy these notes about Great Day Hikes in Asia, then listen to the episode, which includes additional details and witty banter from your hosts Scott Coates and Trevor Ranges. For a Google Map of the hikes which you can follow, scroll down to the bottom of the page.

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Pak Ou Caves, Luang Prabang, Laos, courtesy Khiri Travel

Pak Ou Caves, Luang Prabang, Laos; courtesy Khiri Travel

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Scaling mountains is a pursuit that attracts some of the world’s most adventurous people. Attempting to climb the world’s tallest mountains within the Himalayas is an entirely other sport. On this episode, Scott and Trevor chat with Billi Bierling, a German who has spent much of her life living, working, and climbing in Nepal, among other Himalayan nations, about her passion for tackling some of the world’s tallest and toughest peaks, including Mount Everest, which she has successfully summited.

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Some of the towering beauty that rests along and astride the Himalayan trade routes

Some of the towering beauty that rests along and astride the Himalayan trade routes

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Abandoned Colonial Mansion, Kep

Abandoned Colonial Mansion, Kep

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Chiang Mai Temple on Talk Travel Asia podcast with Scott Coates and Trevor Ranges

One of many beautiful Chiang Mai temples – courtesy of www.smilingalbino.com

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Scott starts the episode talking about how paddling is something that he has always enjoyed doing when at a beach where there are kayaks for rent. Typically he’s only ridden on simple sit-on-top varieties and usually has only done so for an hour or so. He enjoys it because it’s very inexpensive –typically about $5US/hr in Thailand, it’s good exercise, and it gets you up close and personal with the area.

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Trevor introduces the episode by talking about how, while their careers have been travel related, Scott and he still haven’t seen it all.  People often assume because of their jobs they’ve been everywhere and seen everything but the reality isn’t that simple.  Scott agrees that there are never enough hours in a day, weeks in a month, and months in a year for travel.

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Scott starts by explaining how travel sets the stage for wild things to take place like few other things can: New places, intriguing people, the great unknown, caution thrown to the wind, and perhaps a few too many drinks. Things happen, doors open, situations arise, and hopefully legends ensue.

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