Biocultural Diversity in Nepal

September 23 - November 26, 2019


Langtang National Park in the Himalayas of Central Nepal is a high mountainous park with a mandate to conserve the area’s rich biological diversity as well as its colorful cultural heritage. Critically endangered Red Pandas, Snow Leopards, and Musk Deer roam the mountains while Tamang farmers terrace hillsides, graze their Yaks in alpine meadows, and supplement their diet with wild mushrooms and greens. It has been four decades since the Langtang National Park was established and the Park’s unique legacy makes it an excellent living laboratory to explore issues of biodiversity and conservation. What is working and what challenges remain?

The program is run in partnership with Western Washington University, but open to students from all universities. It includes seven weeks of intensive field work that encompasses academic studies in Himalayan biodiversity, conservation biology, and ethnobiology. Students will begin by learning how biodiversity is defined, measured, mapped, and conceptualized by biologists and other scientists. A primary focus will be on how communities continue to depend on the biodiversity despite shifts in land management, climate, and economic needs.


Key Features

  • Learn about Himalayan biodiversity, conservation, and ethnobiology

  • Spend seven weeks in Nepal in the remote and mountainous Rasuwa district

  • Study, live, and trek in the remarkable Langtang National Park

  • Support local earthquake rebuilding efforts with RTEES Nepal

  • 15 credits through Western Washington University

Program Information

September 23 - november 26

$8,540 per student


  • 15 credits through Western Washington University

  • Daily living expenses (food, lodging)

  • In-country transportation

  • Admissions (temples, parks, etc.)

  • Treks and other excursions

  • Travel Health Insurance


  • Visa

  • Immunizations/personal medical expenses

  • International airfare

  • Independent travel



The Nepal earthquake in 2015 killed more than 8,000 people and destroyed the homes and livelihoods of countless others. Rural areas in the Rasuwa district were devastated by the earthquake, and a because of their remoteness, are still getting little, if any, support from the government or large agencies.

We have been partnering with the Rural Tourism and Environmental Education Society (RTEES), a local nonprofit based in Rasuwa, to support relief and reconstruction work. Our immediate efforts focused on delivering food, clothes, and medicine, and then providing sturdy tents and waterproof sleeping pads to make it through the monsoon season.

We are now working with RTEES on rebuilding homes and community infrastructure. Thousands of people remain in tents and temporary shelters, and we are committed to the long-term rebuilding process in Rasuwa.

Have Questions?


Trip Leaders

Abe Loyd   WWU Faculty Member, Nepal Program

Abe Loyd
WWU Faculty Member, Nepal Program

Bipin Lama   Nepal Field Coordinator

Bipin Lama
Nepal Field Coordinator

Yardain Amron   Learning & Communications Coordinator

Yardain Amron
Learning & Communications Coordinator


Ready to join us?