India Yoga & Volunteer Experience
2 weeks from £969
- Volunteer at a rewarding community daycare project
- Trek through and camp out in the beautiful Himalayas
- Take a tour of Palampur's tea gardens and monasteries
- Discover inner calm with regular yoga and meditation sessions
- Learn about the local community and get to know the people of Palampur
- Experience Indian culture, customs, and delicious food
If you're yet to experience India, this trip is a great introduction. Famous for its colourful streets and marketplaces, noise, chaos and overcrowded cities, India also has a much calmer, spiritual side linked to its traditions, culture, and utterly astounding natural scenery - all of which you'll discover when you join our volunteer and yoga retreat. Starting off in India's capital, you'll get a glimpse of the bustling everyday life, possibly with a chance to explore if you arrive early on. From Delhi you'll make your way to Palampur, where you'll spend two magical weeks living in the foothills of the Himalayas. You'll be helping out at a rewarding community project to restore the heavily relied upon childcare centre, discovering the beauty of your surroundings with a weekend Himalayan trek, and doing a bit of soul searching with meditation and yoga classes with the serene mountainscape as your backdrop - a real journey of self-discovery and inner peace.
Interested and want to find out more? Download more trip information and detailed itinerary HERE!
Day 1: Delhi
Namaste and welcome to India! Today you'll arrive in India's bustling capital where you'll be met by one of our friendly in-country team, who will take you to your accommodation. You'll no doubt want to rest for a while after your long flight, but depending on the time you arrive, you might want to fit in a bit of sightseeing, too.
Day 2: Internal flight to Dharamsala
On day two you'll catch an internal flight from Delhi to Dharamsala where you'll be met by another member of our team, who will take you to your accommodation in the picturesque town of Palampur. Relax before meeting up with the rest of your group and tour leader for an orientation session. Afterwards, enjoy an evening stroll around the nearby market.
Please note: your flight from Delhi to Dharamsala will need to be booked and paid for separately to the rest of your trip. Our flights team can help arrange this for you, give them a call on 01892 277037.
Day 3-7: Project work
On days three to seven, you'll be based at a local daycare centre in the heart of Palampur, where you'll get to help make repairs to the centre, paint murals, and carry out light renovation work or help provide care for the children (depending on the size of the group). The centre cares for children between the ages of two and four-years-old, but is in a poor state and desperately needs work to be carried out to keep it in a fit condition for the children. In the evenings you'll get to enjoy yoga and meditation sessions, with a trip to the local tea plantation and factory, and a tour of the temples and monasteries around Palampur.
Day 8-9: Himalayan trek
After breakfast on day eight, we'll make our way to Bir, at the foot of the Himalayas, which is where we'll begin our two-day Himalayan trek. We'll spend around four hours walking before setting up camp to sleep under the stars. On day nine we'll make the journey back to Bir, and then drive on to Palampur, stopping to view the Sherabling Monastery on the way.
Day 10-13: Project work
On days 10-13, we'll continue with our volunteer work - either at the same site, or a different care centre, depending on your preference. You'll get the opportunity to have more involvement with the children's care, teaching and playing with them, and generally paying them some attention! In the evenings you'll get to unwind with more yoga and meditation sessions.
Day 14: Free day in Palampur
You'll have a final day today in Palampur to explore the town and surrounding area, so make the most of being in this picturesque place and visit some of the numerous Tibetan temples, take a trip to Gopalpur Zoo, or spend time zorbing or paragliding around the mountains. All activities in your own time will need to be paid for locally - ask your coordinator to help you choose and book the activities you're most interested in.
Day 15: Depart
There are no activities planned for our last day in Palampur, so you're free to depart whenever you like. Our team will help arrange a return transfer to Dharamsala for you to catch your flight back to Delhi.
Please note activities and itineraries are subject to change.
More Trip Info
- Airport transfers
- All accommodation
- Most meals
- 8 Yoga and meditation sessions
- Organised volunteer work
- Palampur market and tea garden tour
- Two-day guided Himalayas trek
- In-country orientation
- Local in-country team
- 24/7 emergency support
- All flights (including internal flights between Delhi and Dharamsala)
- Travel insurance
- DBS check (although we can organise this for you at an additional cost)
- Optional activities not listed on the itinerary
More Whats Included
Your accommodation will be within a volunteer house close by to the project. You will share a dorm-style room with other volunteers (of the same sex) in your group. The rooms are basic, but clean and comfortable. You will have shared use of shower facilities, common areas, and internet access. You'll spend one night camping in tents during the Himalayan mountain trek.
You’ll be provided with breakfast, lunch, and dinner for the majority of your stay, which are prepared and cooked at the volunteer houses by on-site cooks. Breakfast usually consists of paratha, bread, tea (chai), jam, and porridge, and lunches and dinners will be in the form of a variety of dal (lentils), vegetables, rice, roti, pickle, curries, and yoghurt. Let us know if you have any special dietary requirements when you book. During the weekends you’ll have the opportunity to go out and explore and try different food in the local market if you like.
More Accommodation & Meals
To get a flight quote simply use the form below, or contact our fantastic flights team on 01892 277037.
Get Flights Quote
More Flights Info
You will need to arrange your flights to arrive at Indira Gandhi International Airport in New Delhi (DEL) on day one of the itinerary, and then arrange a separate internal flight from Delhi to Dharamsala Airport (DHM) to depart on day two of the itinerary. Please arrange to depart from Dharamsala Airport (DHM) on your programme end date.
To arrange your flights, contact our fantastic flights team on 01892 277037 or email them at [email protected] They will be able to search for the best flight offers to your chosen destinations, so you can plan and organise your trip in one place. Just make sure you give them your full name, as stated in your passport, along with your chosen departure dates, return dates, and any other details you want to include.
It is important that once you have booked your flights you add these details to your online account or alternatively you can contact us with your departure date, the flight number and arrival time at your destination.
More Arrival Info
Minimum age 18, maximum dependent on health and fitness of participant.
A visa is required for entry to India and must be obtained before you travel. You can apply for a tourist visa or an e-tourist visa via the Indian High Commission. Your passport will need to be machine readable, have two blank pages available for immigration stamps, and must have at least six months' validity remaining on entry to India.
DBS (Disclosure and Barring Service)
On this particular programme, as you’ll be working with children, you’ll need to undergo an enhanced DBS check and will need to have a clean criminal record.
DBS checks may list past convictions, cautions, reprimands, warnings, and if applicable will show whether or not you have been barred from working with certain vulnerable groups. Non-conviction information such as fixed penalties may also be included.
There is an additional cost for the DBS check, please speak to your travel advisor at the time of booking. The DBS process is in three stages:
1. Once we receive your booking payment, you will then be sent an online application link for the DBS check, which you will need to complete.
2. Once you have completed the application, the DBS will need verification of your identity – to do this you will need to take three original documents to your nearest crown post office and use their DBS and ID verification service. This costs approximately £5 and is payable directly to the Post Office.
3. It can take up to two weeks for your DBS to be processed, which will be sent to you directly in the post.
Do I Need Hiking Boots For The Himalayan Trek?
You'll be walking through rocky mountain terrain, so sturdy walking shoes or hiking boots are a good idea - at the very least, make sure you have comfortable trainers with you.
Do I Need Shots/inoculations?
We’re not qualified to offer you medical advice, so it’s a good idea to visit your GP well ahead of time to find out what inoculations you might need. Remember to tell them which countries/regions you’re travelling to and the sorts of activities you’ll be taking part in. You’ll also need to make sure you have enough of any prescribed medication to see you through the duration of your trip.
How Much Spending Money Should I Bring With Me?
The majority of your meals will be catered for and you'll spend a lot of your time at the volunteer project or on programme excursions, so you shouldn't need too much in the way of spending money, unless you plan to spend big bucks souvenir shopping! In your own time you might want to take part in activities like zorbing or paragliding, go for a meal out or peruse the market stalls - but a weekly budget of 8400INR-12500INR/£100-£150 should be more than enough to cover everything.
What Clothes Do I Need To Pack?
A full kit list will be provided once you book your trip but do keep in mind the season that you are travelling. The temperature can often become quite chilly, particularly in the evenings so it is a good idea to bring along some warm clothes too.
More Eligibility & FAQ's