Nepal- the country of the Himalayas, offers beautiful locations and destinations for trekking and many other activities. Famous for being a home to the world’s tallest peak- Mount Everest, Nepal also has many culture and customs that reflect the country’s diversity beautifully. Rich in culture, history and natural landscapes, Nepal is a prefect destination for vacations. Trekking in Nepal is perhaps one of the most famous activity to do. The wonderful appeal of the mountains of the country attract thousands of visitors every year. Trekking in Nepal is also a very good way to get yourself acquired with the people’s lifestyle, their tradition and their rituals. Not lacking in regional aspect, Nepal has many beautiful destinations that offer great trekking journeys and amazing experiences. Embedded with religious sites and spiritual settings pertaining to many religions, Trekking in Nepal is quite a wholesome and sublime affair. Here are top ten best treks to do in Nepal.
The fifth highest mountain in the world- Mount Makalu is located in the Mahalangur Himalayan Range southeast of Mount Everest on the border between Nepal and China. One of the eight-thousanders, Makalu is an isolated peak whose shape is a four-sided pyramid. The charming environment of the Arun Valley make the Makalu Base Camp Trek a special one, as the Makalu region attracts only few travelers during a year due to its remote accessibility and off the beaten trekking trails. The trekking trail takes visitors through the village of Tumlingtar and the Makalu Barun National Park with uneven terrains and a notoriety for swift ascends through villages and beautiful descents along lush forests. Covering an area of 1,500 km2 in the districts of Solukhumbhu and Sankhuwasabha, the Makalu Barun National Park is the world’s only protected area with an elevation gain of more than 8,000 meters enclosing tropical forest as well as snow-capped peaks. The Barun Valley along the trek provides stunning contrasts, where high waterfalls cascade into deep gorges, craggy rocks rise from lush green forests, and colorful flowers bloom beneath white snowy peaks. The unique landscape of the region shelters some of the last pristine mountain ecosystems on Earth.
An off-the-beaten-trail for trekking, the Kanchenjunga Trek offers one of the most beautiful terrains for hiking and adventures. The third highest mountain in the world, Kanchenjunga lies partly in Nepal and partly in Sikkim, India. Also called the “Five Treasures of the Snow” after its five high peaks, Kanchenjunga has always been worshipped by the people of Darjeeling and Sikkim. The Kanchenjunga Trek offers lush and beautiful vegetation and varieties of flora and fauna found in the eastern region of Nepal. Four main glaciers radiate from the peak. Kangchenjunga is also one of six peaks above 8,000 meters located in the basin of the Koshi River, which is among the largest tributaries of the holy Ganges River. The Kangchenjunga massif also forms part of the Ganges Basin. During the trek, villages occupied by Rai and Limbu ethnic people are most-prominent.
A region in the Himalayas of Nepal lying north of the Kathmandu Valley and bordering Tibet is Langtang. The Langtang Valley Trek encompasses some of the most prepossessing natural sceneries found in the country. Renowned for its cheese factory and the Kyanjing Gompa, the Langtang valley Trek also passes through the Langtang National Park. Established in 1976, it is the first Himalayan National Park in the country. The high altitude sacred lake of Gosaikunda also falls within the park. The sight of the Langtang Lirung Himal along the trek is a beguiling sight to behold while trekking. Though not high by the standards of major Himalayan peaks, Langtang Lirung is notable for its large vertical relief above local terrain. Other sights of the mountain peaks like the Ganesh Himal, the Tserko RI, the Kyanjin RI and the Dorje Lakpa also make trekking quite majestic.
The Everest Gokyo Lake Trek diverts from the regular route taken by most of the trekkers and instead, takes you along a less travelled trail in the Everest region, allowing you to cherish the beauty that lie in the sapphire lakes of Gokyo. Oligotrophic lakes in Nepal’s Sagarmatha National Park, the Gokyo Lakes are the world’s highest freshwater lake system comprising six main lakes. The Gokyo Lakes are considered sacred by both Hindus and Buddhists. About 500 Hindus take a holy bath in the lakes during the Janai Purnima festival, which usually occurs in the month of August. The Trek offers walking on beautiful Himalayan terrain. Visiting the cerulean lakes in the Himalayas is very fascinating. The site of the lake is also worshipped as the residing place of ‘Nag Devata’ (the Snake God). The Ngozumpa Glacier- the largest glacier in Nepal, and a climb to the Gokyo RI are the major highlight of this trek. As you ascend up the Gokyo RI, you will be rewarded by the best views of the mountains like Cho Oyu, Makalu, Everest and Lhotse.
The Annapurna Panorama Trek is one of those journeys especially devised for experiencing the best panoramic views of the Annapurna Mountain massif. One of the easiest treks to do, the Annapurna Panorama Trek takes you to the heights with no hassles of altitude sickness and lets you enjoy views of the mountains up close in the Annapurna region. The vantage point of Poon Hill is the major attraction of this trek. Trekkers often wake up early in the morning to go visit Poon Hill to look at the sight of the rising sun amidst the Annapurna Mountains. The whole manifestation is often described as breath-taking as the phenomenon of the rays of the rising sun changing the color of the ivory peaks from snowy white to a cascade of molten gold and burning ember is heavenly. Views of Annapurna I, Annapurna II, Annapurna III, Annapurna IV, Annapurna South, Nilgiri and Mount Dhaulagiri along the trek are marvelous.
A trek rising to an altitude of 5,416 meters on the Thorong La Pass and touching the edge of the Tibetan plateau, the Annapurna Circuit Trek is a classic trekking journey in the region. The mountain scenery, seen at close quarters along the Circuit includes the Annapurna Massif (Annapurna I-IV), Dhaulagiri, Machhapuchhre, Manaslu, Gangapurna, Tilicho Peak, Pisang Peak and the Paungda Danda. Numerous other peaks of 6000-8000 meters in elevation also rise from the Annapurna range. Beginning from Beshisahar in the Marshyangdi River Valley and concluding in the Kali Gandaki Gorge, the Annapurna Circuit Trek has trails passing along paddy fields and into subtropical forests, several waterfalls and gigantic cliffs, and various villages. Annapurna Circuit has often been voted as the best long distance trek in the world, as it offers a wide variety of climate zones from tropics to the arctic at the Thorong La Pass and a cultural variety from Hindu villages at the low foothills to the Tibetan culture of Manang Valley and lower Mustang.
04. Manaslu Circuit Trek
The Manaslu Circuit Trek lets you experience the glory of the Manaslu region of Nepal. Mount Manaslu is the highest peak in the Gorkha District and is located east of Annapurna. The eighth highest mountain in the world, Mount Manaslu gets its name from the Sanskrit word “manasa”, meaning “intellect” or “soul”. Thus, Manaslu is also sometimes called “the mountain of spirits”. The mountain’s long ridges and valley glaciers culminate in a peak that towers steeply above its surrounding landscape. This gives quite a dominant feature to Mount Manaslu when viewed from afar. As you walk along the trail of the Manaslu Circuit Trek, you will pass the ancient salt trading route and can enjoy the white water rapids of the Budhi Gandaki River. The trail of the Manaslu Circuit also ascends up to the Larkya La from where breath-taking views of the glacier terrain can be seen. The Manaslu Conservation Area has also been established there and it comprises of sub-tropical Himalayan foothills to arid Trans-Himalayan high pastures bordering Tibet.
The Upper Mustang Trek offers one of the most distinguished and different trekking experience from anything else in the country. Unlike the chartreuse terrains of other regions, Upper Mustang is known for its dry and windy landscape that look like the badlands. One of the most exotic locations in the country, Upper Mustang, formerly the Kingdom of Lo, is a remote and isolated region with one of the most well-preserved Tibetan Buddhist religion in practice in the entire world. Due to its relative isolation from the outside world, Upper Mustang Trek is one of the best trekking experiences in the country. As the region of Upper Mustang lies on the rain-shadow zone of the Annapurna and the Dhaulagiri mountain ranges, trekking in Upper Mustang can be done at any time with no worries about rain or snow. Upper Mustang is on an ancient trade route between Nepal and Tibet exploiting the lowest pass of the Kora La through the Himalaya west of Sikkim. Once an independent kingdom, Mustang is closely tied by language and culture to Tibet.
The Annapurna Base Camp is the second most famous trekking journey in the country. The region of Annapurna is famous for its mountains and various destinations like Pokhara that offer amazing leisure and adventure activities to do besides trekking. The word “Annapurna” in Sanskrit means ‘full of food’, which roughly translates to ‘Goddess of Plenty’. The trek takes you through beautiful villages like Tadapani, Poon Hill and Deurali. The Magar and Gurung villages in the far-off locations of the region on the trek also offers good insight about the lifestyle of the village people. The Annapurna Base Camp Trek is a brilliant way to enjoy the culture and tradition of the local indigenous mountain people along with the cerulean peaks of Mount Annapurna.
The Everest Base Camp Trek is the most famous trekking experience in the country. The trek provides trekkers and hikers with the most wonderful scenery of the Khumbu region. With destinations like the famous Namche Bazaar- also known as the “gateway to Everest”, Tengboche and Dingboche, the Everest Base Camp Trek encompasses all the best elements and aspects of trekking in the Khumbu and to the base camp of the world’s tallest peak- Mount Everest. With trails passing through the Sagarmatha National Park, the trek offers visitors with sights of beautiful mountain peaks like Nuptse, Lhotse and the Ama Dablam among many others. With the Tengboche Monastery as its spiritual hub, the Everest Base Camp Trek also lets trekkers enjoy the presence of the Khumbu Icefall and the Khumbu Glacier. The vantage point of Kalapatthar also presents absolutely amazing views of the Everest massif. It is one of the best trekking journeys to do in the country, with thousands of trekkers partaking in it every year.