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Gokyo Ri Trek: Seasonal Guide, Difficulty, and Permit Essentials

Gokyo Ri lies in the lap of the majestic Mt.Everest. It is typically ten days long, starting and ending at Lukla. Gokyo Ri has recently started becoming popular among trekkers but still has a lot for you to explore. The main highlights of the trek are the oligotrophic Gokyo Ri lakes and the Gokyo Ri peak. Among all the Gokyo Ri lakes, the main six freshwater lakes are listed as the world’s highest freshwater lakes. Namely, Dudh Pokhari (Lake in Nepali) AKA Gokyo Cho, Thonak Cho (Lake), Gyazumpa Cho, Tanjung Cho, Ngojumba Cho, and Phonak Cho.

However, in the Gokyo Ri trek, you will come across only three of them.

Some other highlights of the Gokyo Ri Trek

  1. Stunning views of the pearly white mountains like Mt. Lhotse, Mt. Makalu, Mt. Thamserku, Mt. Cholatse, Mt. Kang, Mt. Everest, etc.
  2. Explore the wilderness of the Sagarmatha National Park
  3. Get to experience life at the highest village with human settlement at Gokyo village.
  4. Witness the awestruck beauty of the Ngozumpa glacier. 
  5. Opportunity to explore the colorful Sherpa culture and traditions.

How difficult is the Gokyo Ri Trek? 

The Gokyo Ri trek is quite difficult. Likewise, the maximum altitude one needs to trek during the trek is 5357 m. Therefore, trekkers are prone to suffer from mountain sickness/ altitude sickness.

Moreover, Gokyo Ri’s trail is very slippery and has a strenuous ascent. So, someone with no previous trekking experience would be better off keeping their distance from it. However, if you want to give it a go anyway, then make sure to go on shorter hikes and treks. This helps your body prepare for the trek. Also, lets you what you’re capable of.

In conclusion, the Gokyo Ri trek is not beginner-friendly but is doable with physical training.

Gokyo Ri trek throughout the year

If you are wondering if you can opt for the Gokyo Ri trek at any time of the year. Then, the answer is no. Unlike some low-altitude treks of Nepal, this trek can be fatally hazardous during some particular time of the year. Let us dive into the details, shall we?

Gokyo Ri trek during the Spring season

The Spring season in Nepal starts in March and ends in May. The beginning of March to early May is the most suitable time for the Gokyo Ri trek. The first reason is the stable weather. These moths, by far, have the longest days of the year. Plus, the temperature is neither too hot nor too cold. Plus, the trails are exceptionally beautiful, with blooming rhododendrons all around. There is very little probability of the weather turning against you out of the blue. So, just like any other trek in Nepal, spring is the safest and best time for the Gokyo Ri trek.

Spring-Gokyo-lake-spring

Gokyo Ri trek during the Summer season /Rainy season

The rainy season, or the summer season in Nepal, extends from June to August. Every part of the country experiences heavy and continuous rainfall during this time. And Gokyo Ri is no exception to it. Continuous rainfall obstructs the view, taking away the essence of trekking. Likewise, rain makes the already slippery Gokyo Ri’s trial even less stable.

Moreover, the weather in the summer season is very unpredictable. It changes in a blink of an eye. There is a high probability of trials being damaged and blocked due to floods and landslides. Also, the sun is scorching hot on the days it doesn’t rain. And walking under such heat is not an easy job. The increasing heat with altitude gain, as you go up, is not a very good combination for your well-being.

Therefore, it is better not to plan your Gokyo Ri trek during the rainy season. However, if you do end up doing it around this time, make sure to be extra cautious.

summer-Gokyo-lake

Gokyo Ri trek during the Monsoon season / Fall season

Just like spring, the Monsoon season is perfect for the Gokyo Ri trek. It is very safe as well as has stunning visuals. After continuous rainfall during the summer season, the temperature starts to decrease. It is just cool enough to be able to trek for long hours. Moreover, the weather conditions are very stable. The skies are blue, and no gloomy clouds block the scenic views.

Similarly, during the beginning of the Monsoon season, trees are greener, and flowers are more vibrant. Most of the day’s weather is predictable; hence, it is safer to trek. The average temperature around this time ranges from 15 degrees Celsius to 23 degrees Celsius.

The cherry on top is the opportunity to celebrate Nepal’s two biggest festivals: Dashain and Tihar. Around October and September, Nepal is decorated with love and warmth for festivities. So, trekking in Monsson gives trekkers a chance to indulge in this auspicious celebration.

Gokyo Ri trek during the Winter season

The winter season in the Himalayas is brutally cold, with temperatures getting severely low. Just like the rainy season, the weather is not stable and changes faster than you imagine. You may be caught in snow storms and avalanches. If you get caught in one of these natural hazards, there is no escaping without emergency evacuation. It is very risky and can cause serious injuries.

Similarly, the trails of Gokyo Ri are covered with snow, which makes navigating directions difficult. The piled-up snow also makes it hard to maintain your balance while trekking. Moreover, the Gokyo Lakes are most likely to be frozen. Hence, you won’t get to see them for their true glory. Therefore, we suggest you not trek Gokyo Ri during winter.

Final say: the best time for the Gokyo Ri trek is during the Spring season and Autumn season.

winter-Gokyo-lake

What are the Permits required for the Gokyo Ri trek?

As the Gokyo Ri trek takes you to Nepal’s Everest region, there are two mandatory trekking permits:

  1. The Sagarmatha National Park Permit
  2. The Khumbu Pasang Lhamu Rural Municipality Entrance Permit
  3. Gaurishankar Conservation Area Permit (only if you trek through Jiri route)

How much does the Sagarmatha National Park Permit cost?

The cost of the Sagarmatha National Park Permit depends on your home country. Foreigners, except SAARC nationalities, need to pay Nepali rupees 3000 per person. Citizens of SAARC countries are liable to pay 1500 Nepali rupees per person. Nepali citizens need to pay Nepali rupees 100 per person. Lastly, children under 10 years do not need to pay for Sagarmatha National Park Permit.

How much does the Khumbu Pasang Lhamu Rural Municipality Entrance Permit cost?

Foreigners must pay 2000 Nepali rupees per person for the Khumbu Pasang Lhamu Rural Municipality Entrance Permit. SAARC nationalities are charged 1500 Nepali rupees per person. Likewise, Nepali citizens need to pay 100 Nepali rupees per person. Lastly, just like the Sagarmatha National Park Permit, children younger than 10 are not liable for any payment.

How much does the Gaurishankar Conservation Area Permit cost?

You need to get this permit only if you trek through the Jiri trail. If you directly fly to Lukla from Kathmandu you do not need to obtain this particular permit. The cost for the Gaursishankar Conservation Area Permit (GCAP) for foreigners is 3000 Nepali rupees. Similarly, the cost for SAARC countries is 1000 Nepali rupees. Lastly, this permit is also free for children under 10.

Note: you can not pay in foreign currency to obtain any of the Gokyo Ri permits. So, make sure you have Nepali currency before applying for them.

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    Ultimate Guide to Manaslu Trek: Tips & Permits

    The 16-day Manaslu circuit trek is one of the most challenging treks in remote parts of Nepal. It offers a wide range of fascinations, such as Manaslu mastiffs, Larkya La pass (5215 m/ 17109.58 ft), and subtropical forests. Likewise, exotic wildlife, landscapes, green meadows, and Gurung villages with unique cultures and traditions. The trek links to Upper Budi Gandaki, called Nupri ( the western mountains). Since the trek elevates to a high altitude, there is a risk of altitude sickness and respiratory problems.

    Manaslu circuit trek begins from Sotikhola after sightseeing around the capital, Kathmandu, on the first day. The trek trail goes through many small villages of Nepal, flaunting stunning views of Larkya La pass and Larkya La glacier. It also provides trekkers with the opportunity to experience the natural hot spring ‘Tatopani.’

    So, grab the chance to get close to remote Nepal’s beauty and adventures in majestic mountains. Moreover, explore different lifestyles, cultures, foods, flora and fauna, wildlife, etc. via the Manaslu Circuit trek.

    How difficult is the Manaslu circuit trek?

    The Manaslu circuit trek does not involve many technicalities, and you do not need to learn unique techniques or skills to complete it. However, it is one of the longest, with a total of 16 days. Trek’s trail goes from plains to hills to canyons to the lap of the great Himalayas through steep trails and huge cliffs.

    Therefore, it is tedious and requires good physical condition and strength. One needs to be agile in adapting to the changing environment. All in all, the Manaslu circuit trek is moderately challenging for people with experience and hard for newbies.

    Manaslu-Circuit-Trek

    Is the Manaslu circuit trek beginner-friendly?

    The trek trail is quite risky and has some risky places. It passes through the Larkya La pass, which makes it even more challenging. Beginners who have absolute past trekking experience are sure to find the trek very difficult. 

    The Manaslu circuit trek can not necessarily be classified as “beginner-friendly.” However, a couple of small hikes and physical exercises for a couple of weeks ( 3 weeks to 4 weeks) before the trek are enough to prepare for it. Beginners should trek slowly and steadily, not gain elevation quickly, and acclimate well to avoid getting ill.

    Manaslu curcuit elevation

    Discover the breathtaking altitudes of the Manaslu Circuit Trek, where every stride elevates your journey amidst the Himalayan splendor. Scaling up to 5200 meters (approx. 17060.37 feet) near the Larkya La pass in Bhimtang, this trek unfolds a captivating ascent through diverse landscapes. Beginning at a modest 720 meters (about 2362.2 feet) in Sotikhola, trekkers gradually ascend, navigating valleys, hills, and canyons. The adventure peaks at the majestic Larkya La pass, before descending to the final destination of Besi Sahar, nestled at 760 meters (approx. 2493.44 feet). Each step unveils panoramic vistas of snow-capped peaks, lush valleys, and remote mountain villages. Embark on an unforgettable Himalayan odyssey with the Manaslu Circuit Trek.

    The highest elevation of the Manaslu circuit trek is 5200 m / 17060.37 ft. near the Larkya La pass in Bhimtang. Elevation starts as low as 720 m / 2362.2 at Sotikhola, gradually rising until Bhimtang, and then gradually lowering down to 760 m / 2493.44 at Besi Sahar, the last destination.

    Manaslu-Circuit-Trek-Range

    Physical condition and experience required

    Now, the Manaslu circuit trek is bound to give you altitude sickness as it takes us high up to the 5200 m / 17060.37 ft altitude. So, it is obvious that the trek is a big no-no for people with pulmonary  ( related to lungs) health issues, heart disease, and joint and muscle problems. One has to be in a good physical state before opting for the Manaslu circuit trek. 

    Food during the trek

    Most common food you are served are: Dal (lentils ), Bhat ( steamed rice), and tarkari  (vegetable). For breakfast, coffee, tea, milk, cereals, bread, jam, butter,  kodo ko roti (millet flour pancake) are available. Likewise, for lunch and dinner: Mo: Mo (dumplings stuffed with veggies and minced meat ), Thukpa, vegetable soup, noodles, macaroni, etc.

    Electricity/battery recharge and water resources

    In hotels in Kathmandu and Pokhara, you can comfortably recharge your electrical devices. However, while on a trek, some teahouses charge extra to let you charge your devices. Therefore, it is wise to carry your own power bank. There are many natural water resources throughout the Manaslu circuit trek. Water from these resources is safe to consume, but it is good to carry water purifying tablets and your own bottle. Another option is to buy bottled water (  do not throw the water bottles in the trail ).

    The best time for the Manaslu circuit trek

    The spring and Autumn seasons are the most pleasant times of the year. So, it is best to plan your Manaslu circuit trek in the months of these seasons. These two months have moderate temperatures favoring the Manaslu Circuit Trek. However, that is not to be misunderstood, as the other months are bad times for the trek. All 12 months have their pros and cons when it comes to trekking.

    Altitude sickness

    Imagine being above 4000 m +/ 13123 ft + and expecting not to see any symptoms of altitude sickness!

    It is almost impossible. If someone suffers from mountain illness, one needs first aid and rest for a bit. In severe cases, you may even cancel the trek and return. After all, nothing comes before your health.

    Note: We suggest you carry a first-aid kit. Include over-the-counter medicine for mountain sickness, such as Nifedipine, Dexamethasone, etc. Also, acclimatize enough and stay hydrated to prevent it.

    What are the permits required for the Manaslu Circuit Trek?

    For adventurers setting out on the awe-inspiring Manaslu Circuit Trek, obtaining the requisite permits is a crucial step in ensuring a smooth and legally compliant journey. Two permits are essential for trekking in this region: the Manaslu Restricted Area Permit (RAP) and the Manaslu Conservation Area Permit (MCAP). The Manaslu RAP is imperative as the trek traverses through restricted zones, safeguarding the delicate ecosystems and cultural heritage of the area while regulating tourist access. Additionally, the MCAP permit grants entry into the Manaslu Conservation Area, a sanctuary for diverse flora and fauna, and supports conservation efforts. These permits not only ensure legal compliance with government regulations but also contribute to the sustainable management of the trekking route, fostering responsible tourism practices. By obtaining these permits, trekkers not only gain access to the breathtaking landscapes and cultural treasures of the Manaslu region but also play a role in preserving its natural beauty for future generations to explore and cherish.

    One needs three different permits to grant permission to complete the Manaslu Circuit trek. Namely, Special Restricted Area Permit for Manaslu, AKA Manaslu Restricted Area Permit, Manaslu Conservation Area Project Permit (MCAP Permit), and Annapurna Conservation Area Permit.

    What is the luggage limit for the Manaslu circuit trek?

    Your luggage is expected to weigh around 32 kg while on the flight. On the trail, porters or animals are assigned to carry your load. Usually, porters carry 90 percent of their total body weight. However, one should not overload the porters and make them carry about 25 kg. Things not required for trekking should be stored at a hotel.

    Nepal Tourist Visa for Manaslu Circuit Trek

    You can either get a visa for Nepal at your country’s diplomatic mission/embassy or get a visa in Nepal (visa on arrival )itself. The price of the tourist visa differs with the number of days. 

    15 days -$30

    30 days – $50

    90 days – $125

    This is the normal tourist visa cost in Nepal. Many policies decrease the price if you fall into categories like children below 10 years of age, SAARC nationalities, officials, etc. Nepal provides gratis visas to eligible ones. To know more about it, go to the Visa Information blog.

    Note: Nepalese and Indian citizens do not require a tourist visa.

    Travel insurance for the trek

    While on treks like the Manaslu circuit trek that lies on the dangerous side, it is good to have travel insurance to have you covered if anything goes wrong. The easiest way to get travel insurance is to get help from a travel agency. However, if you do it on your own, make sure to tick off the “helicopter evacuation” services. Travel insurance is essential for anyone embarking on the trek in Manaslu. This remote and challenging trek presents various risks, including altitude sickness, accidents, and unforeseen emergencies. A comprehensive travel insurance policy should cover medical expenses, emergency evacuation, trip cancellations, and loss of belongings. It provides peace of mind and financial protection against any mishaps that may occur during the trek, ensuring a safer and more enjoyable experience for trekkers exploring the majestic landscapes of Manaslu.

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    Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek: Permits, Regulations, and Trekking Essentials

    The Kanchenjunga Circuit trek goes in full circle as it starts at Bhadrapur and ends at Bhadrapur as well. This trek takes you on the lap of the third-highest mountain in the world, Mt. Kanchenjunga, 8586 m. It is usually 26 days long.

    Some major highlights of the Kanchenjunga Circuit trek are:

    1. Trekking to remote parts of eastern Nepal.
    2. Terrific landscapes
    3. Get to explore the beauty of Kanchenjunga Glacier
    4. Sneak Peek into Tibetan lifestyle, culture, and tradition
    5. Explore exotic wildlife like snow leopards, Red Panda, Musk Deer, etc.
    6. Walk through the trails decorated with lush green forests and meadows.
    7. Fast-flowing rivers and waterfalls
    8. Trek through the Kanchenjunga Conservation Area, which shelters Asian Black bears, Snow cock, Blood pheasant, Red-billed chough, Melanistic Leopards, and many more rare animals and vegetation.
    9. Behold the sight of Buddhist Monasteries.
    10. Last but obvious is the stunning Mt. Kanchenjunga’s sight.

    What is the classic itinerary of the Kanchenjunga Circuit trek?

    Following the classic route of the Kanchenjunga Circuit trek, the first day starts from Kathmandu to Bhadrapur flight. After flying for about 30 minutes, you will be at Bhadrapur then, drive to Illam. This drive is around 3 hours long.

    Likewise, you could also drive to Taplejung instead of Illam. Either way, the next day, the trek expands to Sekathum with 6 hours (from Illam) / 9 hours (from Taplejung). We rest for the night at Sakethum.

    Early in the morning the next day, we leave for Amjilosa. This day starts trekking by foot. We walk approximately 5 to 6 hours in total. The following day, we leave Amjilosa and walk for 5 hours, and arrive at our destination for the day, Gyabla.

    Similarly, Ghunsa awaits us the day ahead. We spend the night at Ghunsa and move to Khambachen the following day. Upon arrival at Khambachen, we will have gained quite an elevation, so we acclimatize for a day.

    After acclimatising at Khambachen the trek brings us to Lhonak. This day’s trek is relatively short as we do not want to strain our bodies for the final next day. After resting well at Lhonak early morning, we leave for the Kanchenjunga Base Camp.

    The same day, we trek back to Lhonak. Our trek back to Bhadrapur follows the path: of Lhonak to Ghunsa, Ghunsa to Sele Le Base Camp. Likewise, Sele Le Base Camp to Tseram, Tseram to Tortong, Tortong to Yamphudin, Yamphudin to Kanyam, and finally Kanyam to Bhadrapur. 

    Kanchenjunga Circuit trek

    What are the permits required for the Kanchenjunga Circuit trek?

    Embarking on the Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek requires two permits: the Kanchenjunga Conservation Area Project Permit (KCAP) and the Restricted Area Permit (RAP). KCAP allows access to the protected area, while RAP is essential for restricted zones. Prepare necessary documentation, including passport copies and itinerary details, to obtain these permits hassle-free. Ensure legal compliance and contribute to conservation efforts as you embark on this thrilling trekking adventure in Nepal.

    There are two trekking permits to complete the Kanchenjunga Circuit trek legally. First, as the trek passes through the Kanchenjunga Conservation Area, you are obliged to obtain the Kanchenjunga Conservation Area Project Permit (KCAP). Moreover, some parts of the need one to walk through the restricted area of Kanchenjunga so you need a Restricted Area Permit.

    KCA MAP

    Where can you obtain the permits for the Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek?

    To legally undertake the Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek in Nepal, it’s imperative to secure the required permits from authorized governmental bodies. The primary entities responsible for issuing these permits are the Nepal Tourism Board and the Department of Immigration Office, both located in Kathmandu. The Nepal Tourism Board serves as a central hub for assisting trekkers with permit applications and providing guidance on regulatory compliance. Similarly, the Department of Immigration Office oversees the issuance of trekking permits, ensuring adherence to all relevant regulations. By obtaining permits from these official channels, trekkers not only fulfill legal requirements but also contribute to conservation efforts and support local communities. These permits serve as essential documentation for a safe and fulfilling trekking experience along the breathtaking trails of the Kanchenjunga Circuit.

    Two governmental bodies provide the Kanchenjunga Conservation Area Project Permit and the Restricted Area Permit. They are the Nepal Tourism Board and the Department of Immigration Office.

    You can pick either of these places and obtain the necessary permits.

    What are the documents required to obtain the permit?

    Documents required for the permits needed for the Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek are:

    • Copy of valid passport
    • Two passport-size pictures
    • Detailed Itinerary of the trek
    • Guide’s details
    • Travel agency detail
    • Insurance details
    • Emergency contact information

     

    What happens if you do not obtain the necessary permits for the Kanchenjunga Circuit trek?

    It is a serious violation of law if you are caught on the trail without necessary permits. You will be liable to pay a price. Or you could be deported back to your country with the ban on ever trekking back to Nepal. However, in more serious cases, one can be penalized with both charges.

    Permits are needed not only to protect the trails but also for the well-being of trekkers. So, never try trekking anywhere without obtaining permits first.

    Embarking on the Kanchenjunga Circuit trek is an adventure of a lifetime, but it’s essential to obtain the necessary permits for a safe, ethical, and fulfilling experience. Ensure legal compliance, prioritize safety, and contribute positively to local communities and the environment by securing permits before your trek. Your responsible actions will not only enhance your journey but also leave a lasting positive impact on Nepal’s majestic landscapes and vibrant cultures.

    Cost of the Kanchenjunga Conservation Area Project Permit (KCAP)

    Nepali citizens are liable to pay Nrs 100 for KCAP. Likewise, trekkers from SAARC nations need to pay Nrs 500 per person, and foreigners need to pay Nrs 2000.

    The Kanchenjunga Conservation Area Project Permit (KCAP) is a necessary investment for trekkers embarking on the Kanchenjunga Circuit trek. Understand the permit fee, duration, and how to obtain it to ensure a smooth and memorable journey through Nepal’s enchanting landscapes. By supporting conservation efforts through permit fees, you contribute to the preservation of this unique natural habitat for future generations to enjoy.

    Cost of the Restricted Area Permit (RAP)

    The cost of the Restricted Area Permit (RAP) works a little differently than the Cost of the Kanchenjunga Conservation Area Project Permit (KCAP). Unlike the KCAP, the price of the RAP is the same for citizens of SAARC nations and foreigners. The cost of the RAP also varies with time. For the first four weeks, it is $20 per person per week; after the first four weeks, it is $25 per person per week.

    Note: Trekkers can not pay for permits in foreign currency so before applying for either of the Kanchenjunga Circuit trekking permits, ensure to have Nepali currency in hand.

    Can you obtain a Restricted Area Permit Without A Guide?

    No, trekkers can not obtain a Restricted Area Permit (RAP) without a licensed guide. In Nepal, restricted areas are places that the Government of Nepal prioritizes the most. They want these areas’s nature, heritage, and other values to be protected and preserved at any cost. So, the rules regarding getting permission to these areas are very strict.

    Likewise, the Restricted Area Permits help keep track of the flow of tourists. This is important from the government’s point of view as they want to limit the number of trekkers entering the restricted area at a given time. Doing so makes tourism sustainable in the long term.

    As per the government’s rule, trekkers need to have an authorized guide to obtain the RAP for the Kanchenjunga Circuit trek. Similarly, having two other trekkers is mandatory as well. No trekkers under any circumstance are given the RAP without a guide assisting them.

    How difficult is the Kanchenjunga Circuit trek?

    The Kanchenjunga trek is one of Nepal’s less-explored treks. It is off the beaten trail and not easy to trek on. Likewise, the duration of the Kanchenjunga circuit trek is almost four weeks long. Therefore, it falls very high up on the difficulty radar.

    Similarly, the highest elevation of the Kanchenjunga circuit is 5143 m / 16873 ft at the Kanchenjunga north base camp, AKA Pang Pema. This elevation level falls under a very high risk of altitude/mountain sickness. Therefore, with every bit of elevation gain the trek gets even more difficult.

    In conclusion, the Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek is not beginner-friendly. Only trekkers with ample previous trekking experience should go for it.

    Note: People with cardiovascular and pulmonary health issues should stay as far away as possible from the Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek.

     

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      The best time for the Manaslu circuit trek

      One can complete the Manaslu Circuit trek any time/season of the year. However, some seasons have better climates and weather, which makes the trek easier. Likewise, the weather in other seasons adds to the difficulties of the trek.

      As trekkers, we want our trek to go as smoothly as possible. The spring season and the Autumn season are the top picks for the Manaslu Circuit trek. For their favorable weather and moderate temperature. On the other hand, the Winter season and rainy/monsoon season are not the perfect pick as the weather is quite harsh. Especially for the trek to the Himalayas.

      Spring season

      The Spring season (March to May) is the peak season of any trek in Nepal. Views around this time in the Manaslu Circuit’s trail are to die for. The flowers blooming and the birds chirping with the clearest sky you can imagine. This combination remains unbeatable, the reason why spring is so hyped up for being the best trekking season. Likewise, the temperature is moderate  ( 10 degrees Celsius / 50 degrees Fahrenheit to 18 degrees Celsius / 64.4 degrees Fahrenheit). During the spring season, days are longer than they are during winter. This gives you more hours to complete the trek. However, the Spring season has lots of travelers, so expect to meet with a crowd now and then throughout the trail.

      Summer-in-manaslu

      Summer season

      The summer (June, July, and August), also known as the monsoon season, experiences the heaviest and most consistent rainfall in Nepal. This means the trails get really muddy and extremely slippery. Similarly, temperature fluctuates within an hour due to rainfall. The average temperature during this season is 15 degrees Celsius / 59 degrees Fahrenheit to 28 degrees Celsius / 82.4 degrees Fahrenheit. There are risks of natural hazards like floods and landslides. On the brighter side,

      the pollution decreases due to rain, and the view after the rainfall is the best. Another plus point is the less crowded trail so peaceful trekking.

      summer-manaslu

      Autumn / Fall season

      The Autumn season ( September, October, and November ) is the most preferred time for the Manaslu circuit trek. As the weather starts cooling off from the rainfall of the summer season. The temperature is neither too hot nor freezing cold ( 10 degrees Celsius / 50 degrees Fahrenheit to 22 degrees Celsius / 71.6 degrees Fahrenheit). Likewise, the sky gets clearer, and the leaves on the trees get greener before changing browns and finally falling off. In September and October, Nepal is in full swing of two of the greatest festivals, Dashain and Tihar. But of course, with great views and cultural experience comes the crowd. So, do not expect the trails to be packed.

      Raining-manaslu

      Winter season

      The Manaslu circuit trek in the Winter season ( December, January, and February) is beautified by snow. If you love snow and think you can manage trekking well despite the freezing cold, go for it! The temperature is colder in December and January than in February. Jan and Dec have around 5 degrees Celsius / 41 degrees Fahrenheit to -5 degrees Celsius / 23 degrees Fahrenheit) and February has 7 degrees Celsius / 44.6 degrees Fahrenheit to 15 degrees Celsius / 59 degrees Fahrenheit. However, do not forget to carry the trekking equipment to help you walk in the snow. Learn the weather and keep up with weather updates even on the trails to avoid snowstorms and avalanches. Keeping your safety the top priority, if you complete the Manaslu circuit trek in winter, it is perfect for alone time.

      winter-Manaslu

      Pros and Cons of the Manaslu Circuit Trek in Spring

      The Manaslu Circuit Trek in Spring offers stunning views of the Himalayas, lush forests, and cultural experiences in Tibetan-influenced villages. Ideal weather with clear skies and moderate temperatures makes it perfect for trekking, and vibrant flora adds to the scenery. However, popularity can lead to crowded trails, and melting snow can create slippery sections. Despite challenges, it’s a coveted journey for adventurers seeking natural beauty and cultural immersion in Nepal’s remote landscapes.

      Pros:

      • Clear sky
      • Unobstructed and crisp panoramic views of the surrounding snow-white mountains
      • Moderate temperature for the trek
      • Days are longer so longer hours to trek per day
      • Trek through lush green dense forest
      • The best natural vegetation in Spring is the blooming season
      • Less probability of unforeseen natural hazards

              Cons:

      • Since it is a peak season trails are very crowded.
      • Difficult to find accommodation on the trail if not booked in advance
      • Food and accommodation are a bit more expensive due to high tourist flow

       Pros and Cons of The Manaslu Circuit Trek in Rainy Monsoon Or Summer Season

      Trekking the Manaslu Circuit during the rainy monsoon or summer season offers lush landscapes and fewer crowds. The vibrant greenery creates picturesque scenes, and accommodations are more accessible. However, navigating muddy trails and slippery sections poses safety risks. Rainfall may also obscure mountain views, limiting the visual experience. Despite challenges, with proper preparation, exploring the Manaslu Circuit in the rainy season can still be a rewarding adventure for those seeking a unique trekking experience in Nepal.

      Pros:

      • Green landscapes after rainfall are breathtaking
      • Stunning views of the forest 
      • Breathtaking views of the fast-flowing rivers and waterfalls due to continuous rainfall
      • Cool temperature after the rainfall 
      • As it is not a peak trekking season, the trails are less crowded. Perfect for those who want to have some alone time
      • Easier to find accommodation
      • Food and accommodation are cheaper compared to Spring season and Autumn season
      • Some places even have special offers to lure the trekkers in

       

      Cons:

      • Trails are muddy and slippery after the very dangerous rainfall
      • All the clouds and rainfall decrease the visibility
      • Less chance of catching the stunning scenic views
      • Unpredictable weather conditions: even if the day starts clear, it can start raining the next minute
      • Floods and Landslides can block trails for weeks

      Pros and Cons of the Manaslu Circuit Trek in the Autumn or Fall Season

      Trekking the Manaslu Circuit in autumn offers clear skies, mild temperatures, and stunning landscapes with colorful foliage. It’s less crowded than in peak seasons, providing a peaceful journey. However, early booking is essential for accommodations and permits. Trekkers should also prepare for colder temperatures at higher altitudes and be mindful of altitude sickness. Overall, autumn promises a rewarding adventure amidst pristine beauty, with proper preparation ensuring an unforgettable experience.

      Pros:

      • After continuous rainfall in the summer, the clouds clear away, which offers spectacular visibility.
      • The temperature drops down relatively. This makes the weather moderate for hours-long trekking.
      • Autumn is the harvest season in Nepal. Lowlands with terraced farms are decorated with golden rice, ready to be harvested.
      • Moreover, the festivities start with Fall. Nepal’s two main festivals, Dashain and Tihar, are celebrated around this time. So, the best way to explore Nepal’s culture and tradition.
      • There is less probability of being caught in unforeseen natural hazards.

      Cons:

      • Just like the Spring season, trails are jam-packed with trekkers
      • Difficult to find good food and accommodation arrangements on the go
      • Higher prices than the Summer season and the Winter season.

      Pros and Cons of the Manaslu Circuit Trek in the Winter season

      Trekking the Manaslu Circuit in winter offers pristine snow-covered landscapes and fewer crowds, providing a quieter and more serene experience. However, harsh weather conditions, including freezing temperatures and the possibility of snowstorms, make trekking more challenging and potentially hazardous. Trails may be icy and some teahouses closed, limiting accommodation options. Despite these challenges, for experienced trekkers prepared for cold weather, the winter season can provide a unique and rewarding adventure amidst the region’s natural beauty.

      Pros:

      • Peaceful trekking experience due to less tourist flow
      • Perfect to experience snow-covered peaks. The Himalayas look like something out of a winter wonderland during the winter season
      • The skies are clear, and visibility is good (when it not snowing)
      • Easy to find accommodation right on the trials
      • Pay less for the same accommodation than you pay in other seasons.

      Cons:

      • Days are shorter compared to other seasons. So you can not trek for longer hours.
      • Life-threatening natural hazards like snow storms and avalanches.
      • Just like in the rainy season, in the winter season, climate changes in the blink of an eye
      • Temperature is cruelly cold

      Final Say

      The government’s oversight of the Manaslu Circuit Trek ensures safety, environmental preservation, and responsible tourism. Through permits, infrastructure development, and guidelines enforcement, it fosters sustainable practices. Collaborative efforts are vital to maintain the trek’s integrity and support local communities while safeguarding its natural and cultural heritage.

      All seasons have their good and bad. Decide what you want your Manaslu Circuit trek to look and feel like. If you decide to trek during an unideal time of the year, be prepared for the worst. Make sure help is always around. The best way to do that is to be accompanied by experienced guides and porters. They are your saviors amidst the Himalayas. We hope this helped!

       

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        Guide to Everest Base Camp Trek: Permits Costs, Process, and Tips

        What comes to your mind when you hear Nepal? Probably the tallest mountain in the world, Mt. Everest. What could be better than trekking to its lap, AKA the base camp? It is one of the most celebrated treks in Nepal and the entire world. The duration of the Everest Base Camp trek is about 12 days to 14 days long and requires a few special permits.

        Permits refer to official documents / trekking licenses issued by either the national or local government. The main motives of permits are environmental and cultural conservation, ecosystem protection, and trekkers’ welfare. When you trek without a permit it is a serious violation of law. Those who trek without them are liable to fines or jail time (sometimes both).

        In more serious cases, one gets a ban from trekking to the country again. So, just like any other legal rules of the nation, abide by the rules of needing permits and traveling freely. 

        What Are The Permits Needed For Everest Base Camp Trek?

        The Everest Base camp trek is one of Nepal’s most sought-after and most celebrated treks and requires three permits namely Sagarmatha National Park Entry Permit, Khumbu Pasang Lhamu Rural Municipality Entrance Permit, and Gaurishankar Conservation Area Permit (required for an alternative route only that is when you trek to Lukla via Jiri).

        Sagarmatha National Park Entry Permit

        To trek through a national park, trekkers need a National park entry permit. As you walk through the Sagarmatha National Park in the Everest Base Camp trek, the Sagarmatha National Park Permit is a must. 

        One can get this permit from several places, namely the Nepal Tourism Board office at Bhrikutimandap Kathmandu.  And the Sagarmatha National Park entrance point at Monjo. You can also get the Sagarmatha National Park Entry permit via the Nepal Tourism Board’s website.

        Sagarmatha-National-Park

        Khumbu Pasang Lhamu Rural Municipality Entrance Permit

        This permit is mandatory to enter the Khumbu region. The local government of Khumbu has recently implemented a trekking license/permit, so you have to obtain it. You can get it from the Tourist Information Center in Lukla or Monjo. 

        The Khumbu Pasang Lhamu Rural Municipality Entrance Permit is a mandatory document required to enter the Khumbu region. This permit is essential for trekkers embarking on journeys through areas governed by the Khumbu Pasang Lhamu Rural Municipality. It serves as an entry authorization, ensuring that trekkers have the necessary permission to access the region.

        To obtain the Khumbu Pasang Lhamu Rural Municipality Entrance Permit, trekkers typically need to visit designated offices or tourist information centers in Lukla or Monjo. These offices facilitate the application process and issue the permit upon completion of the required paperwork and payment of any associated fees.

        The permit is an important aspect of trekking in the Everest region, as it not only grants legal access but also contributes to local governance and conservation efforts. Additionally, it helps authorities keep track of visitors and ensure the responsible management of tourism activities in the area.

        Overall, the Khumbu Pasang Lhamu Rural Municipality Entrance Permit is an essential document for trekkers planning to explore the breathtaking landscapes and cultural heritage of the Khumbu region during their journey to Everest Base Camp.

        Khumbu-Glacier-Nepal

        What is the total cost for all the permits needed for the Everest Base Camp trek?

        The total cost varies slightly depending on your nationality. One doesn’t need the Gaurishankar permit for the Lukla trial. Therefore, the cost of a permit differs depending on the trek route. However, the total generally ranges from Nepali rupees 1500 / USD 11.23 to 3000 /USD 22.45 per person. Let’s break down the cost of individual permits.

        What is the process of getting the permits for the Everest Base Camp trek?

        To get any of the permits needed for the Everest Base camp trek, you first need to visit the authorized governmental body or place with the authority to provide the license. After arriving there, you need to talk to the official working there and provide them with your destination and itinerary. 

        Then, give all the documents they ask for and follow their guidance. Finally, pay the liable amount, and you are done. For online access, just go to the website and follow the instructions.

        One needs a passport-size photo and a photocopy of the Passport for Sagarmatha National Park.

        Do You need an authorized guide to obtain the Everest Base Camp trek permits?

        No, you do not need a guide to get the Everest Base Camp trek permit. Even though the rule of no solo trekker with a compulsory guide has been in Nepal since 1st April 2023, the Khumbu region doesn’t follow this rule.

        Note that trekkers do have to follow all the rules and get a trekking card, also known as the Khumbu Pasang Lhamu Rural Municipality Entrance Permit. Since you can trek solo, there is no compulsion to have a guide to get the permits for the Everest Base Camp trek.

        What is a Trek Card?

        A Trek card is a digital permit required for the Everest Base Camp trek. The main objective of the trek card is to keep track of all the trekkers on the trail. Trek cards are mandatory since the 23rd of September, 2022. There are, in total, six checkpoints throughout Everest Base Camp’s trail.

        Trekkers are to scan the trek card at these checkpoints before leaving a place in the morning and at their final destination of that day, where they spend the night. This is solely for the trekker’s safety and keeping track of the trail. 

        Where can you get the Trek Card for the Everest base camp trek?

        One can get the Trek Card at Lukla. Documents for it are colored photocopies of your passport. Upon your arrival at Lukla, where you get the Khumbu permit, you submit the photocopy, and they will take your picture for the trek card. Trek cards can be easily obtained online from the Khumbu municipality’s trek card app or website.

        Lukla-airport

        How much does the trek card cost?

        It is free of cost, and there is no fee required for the Trek card itself. You pay for the Khumbu Pasang Lhamu Rural Area permit and proceed further.

        Can you pay in USD  or any other foreign currency to get permits?

        No, to get any sort of permit from any place in Nepal, one needs to pay in Nepali currency. For this, you can simply exchange your country’s currency for Nepali rupees through banks, ATMs, or money exchange centers. Some trusted exchange centers are Dolphin Money Exchange, North Point Money Exchange, Annapurna Money Exchange, etc.

        While exchanging money from exchange centers or any other medium other than banks and ATMs, make sure they have the required authority. This prevents possible scams. If you are trekking through a travel agency to Everest Base Camp, you can simply ask them to exchange your money for Nepalese currency.

        Do guides need to obtain permits to trek to the Everest base Camp?

        No, the local guides do not need any trekking permits to trek to the mighty Everest Base Camp.

        Local guides in the Everest Base Camp region don’t require trekking permits. They’re exempt because they’re familiar with the area and serve as experienced guides. These guides, often residents of Khumbu or with extensive experience, play a crucial role in assisting and ensuring safety.

        They don’t need permits themselves but assist trekkers in obtaining the necessary ones. They ensure trekkers have all required documents and permissions, following regulations set by local authorities.

        This exemption recognizes their vital role in facilitating treks while maintaining regulations and ensuring safety and enjoyment for all.

         

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          Everest Base Camp: Trek & Fly Back with Helicopter

          What better than trekking to the Everest Base Camp Trek, you ask? We say Everest Base Camp With Helicopter return. The trip is about trekking to Base Camp and enjoying scenic views of Lukla, Namche Bazar, and Tengboche. Then, fly above stunning views of the path you walked back to Kathmandu.

          The nine-day trek starts with a flight from Kathmandu to Lukla. From Lukla, we follow the classic itinerary to Everest Base Camp. On the first day itself, after a 30-minute flight to Lukla, we trekked to Phakding and spent the night there.

          The next day, after an early morning breakfast, the trek expands to Namche Bazar. At Namche Bazar, you can explore the buzz of the Tibetan market, which features handmade artifacts. As we have gained quite an altitude by now and will move further up in the following days, the next day is dedicated to acclimatizing at Namche Bazar.

          After relaxing on the third day, our bodies will adapt well to the trek to Tengboche on the fourth day. This day is the most challenging part of the Everest Base Camp Trek. Not to mention, it is also one of the most visually rewarding. It flaunts majestic landscapes and the largest gompa/monastery in the Khumbu region, called Tengboche Monastery.

          sunrise-of-Everest

          On the fifth day, the trek takes you to Dingboche, which lies at an altitude of 4410 m. It will be around a six-hour long walk. Accompanied by sights of Mt. Nuptse, Mt. Ama Dablam, Mt. Nuptse, etc.

          It is time for acclimatization again to prevent the possibility of suffering from mountain sickness/ altitude sickness. So, the sixth day will be about exploring Dingboche and preparing for the next day.

          The next day, the stunning Louche awaits us. We get to behold the sight of the world’s highest glacier, Khumbu Glacier. Other than the elevation gain, the trek to Lobuche doesn’t have challenging trails. So, we will take it slow and easy.

          Finally, on the eighth day, we trek to the lap of Everest. This day comprises the longest walk of the Everest Base Camp trek. First, the trek expands to Gorakshep from Lobuche, which is about 3 hours long. Then, after resting for a bit, we head to the Everest Base Camp. To spend the night we return back to Gorakshep.

          On the last day, we first trek to Kala Patthar, AKA the best viewpoint of Everest. After spending some time syncing in the beauty of Kala Patthar, the trek takes you back to Gorakshep. Then, we take the most awaited scenic helicopter ride from Gorakshep to Kathmandu, which is about an hour long.

          aerial-view-of-mount-Everest

          Day To Day Itinerary We Follow

          First Day: Kathmandu To Lukla To Phakding

          Second Day: Phakding To Namche Bazar

          Third Day: Acclimatization At Namche Bazar

          Fourth Day: Namche Bazar To Tengboche

          Fifth Day: Tengboche To Dingboche

          Sixth Day: Acclimatization At Dingboche

          Seventh Day: Dingboche To Lobuche

          Eighth Day: Lobuche To Everest Base Camp To Gorakshep

          Ninth Day: Gorakshep To Kala Patthar To Gorakshep To Helicopter Flight To Kathmandu

          Highlights of the Everest Base Camp Trek With Helicopter Return 

          • Visit the biggest glacier in Nepal, Khumbu Glacier, and the longest glacier in Nepal, Ngozumpa Glacier.
          • The thrill of passing three high-altitude passes, namely Kongma-La Pass, Cho-La Pass, and Renjo-La Pass.
          • Explore Hillary Museum and the Tibetan market on acclimatization day at Namche Bazar.
          • Get a sneak peek into local Sherpa tradition, culture, and lifestyle.
          • Indulge in local cuisines.
          • Trek through Sagarmatha National Park and explore its exotic vegetation and wildlife.
          • Behold the beauty of the oldest and biggest Buddhist Monastery, Tengboche Monastery.
          • Witness the closest view of the tallest mountain in the world, Mt.Everest.
          • Scenic helicopter ride from Gorakshep to Kathmandu.
          • Trekking amidst the beauty of colorful chortens, prayer flags, and monasteries.

          How Much Does Everest Base Camp Trek With Helicopter Return Cost?

          Different Travel agencies have their policy, offers, and services, which bring a little fluctuation in the total cost of the Everest Base Camp Trek With Helicopter Return. For more detailed information on the prices and discounts, feel free to contact us.

          What does the price include?

          1. Airport pickup and drop at the start and end of the trek
          2. Flight from Kathmandu to Lukla
          3. Three meals per day that is breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
          4. Accommodation on the trail
          5. Payment to Guides and Porters (tip not included)
          6. Cost of all the trekking permits required.
          7. Helicopter’s cost from Gorakshep to Kathmandu

          What does the price exclude?

          1. Travel insurance for the trek
          2. Any additional foods, drinks, and snacks apart from breakfast, lunch, and dinner
          3. Cost of International flights for foreigners
          4. Hotel and food when you are in Kathmandu
          5. Additional cost due to emergency unforeseen circumstances.
          6. Accommodation due to early arrival or late departure due to issues from trekker’s end
          7. Visa fee
          8. If teahouses charge extra for hot showers
          9. Personal gratuities
          10. Extra activities that are not part of the trek

          Note: If you have any queries about the trek package covering the specific charge that is not mentioned above, you can inquire about it whenever. 

          Don’t Like Our Itinerary? Customize it!

          If you feel our itinerary doesn’t fit your schedule or choices, we would be more than happy to customize it for you. Reach out to us in person or contact us via social media email, or cell phone and make an itinerary of your dream to the Everest Base Camp Heli Trek.

          However, there can be slight changes in price when you do so.

          Is there any weight limit for the helicopter ride from Gorakshep to Kathmandu?

          Yes, there is a weight limit trekkers need to follow. The standard weight limit obliges your luggage to be under 500 kg. To maintain it, make sure to carry only important things. You can also leave some of your luggage in Gorakshep and take it back when you return.

          What are the permits needed for the Everest Base Camp With Helicopter Return Trek?

          There are two permits needed for the trek, namely:

          1. Sagarmatha National Park Permit
          2. The Pashang Lhamu Sherpa Entrance Permit

          Note: When you trek with an authorized travel agency, they handle permits on your behalf.

          Things to pack for The Everest Base Camp Heli Trek

          1. First aid kit
          2. Toiletries
          3. Sunscreen
          4. Warm insulated clothes
          5. Reusable water bottle
          6. High energy snacks
          7. Power banks
          8. Photocopies of your visa and passport
          9. Passport size pictures
          10. Nepali currency
          11. Light t-shirt and trekking pants for lower altitude
          12. Water purification tablet
          13. Polarized glasses
          14. Inner thermal set
          15. Hat
          16. Scarf
          17. Trekking socks
          18. Gloves
          19. Waterproof trekking clothes
          20. Mosquito repellent cream or spray
          21. Headlamp
          22. Navigating tools or physical map
          23. Down jacket
          24. Fleece Jacket

          Note: The clothes you need to pack for the Everest Base Camp trek with helicopter return depend on the season you pick. However, at higher altitudes, the weather is always very cold, so always carry a couple of warm trekking sets. The rest can change with time.

           

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            Everest Base Camp Trek: Complete Planning & Tips

            Everest base camp trek goes through the Khumbu region’s rawness. The total duration of the trek is 15 days, starting from the most approached point of the Everest region, Lukla. Likewise, this trek has a terrific combination of adventurous trails and stunning landscapes. 

            The experience proudly greets you with an up-close view of the highest mountain, Everest, and other peaks like Mt.Lhotse, Mt. Choyu, Mt.Makalu, etc. So get up and take this experience of trekking with the majestic Himalayas as soon as you can through the Everest base camp trek.

            What is the difficulty level of the Everest base camp trek?

            The Everest Base Camp trek is considered moderately difficult. It involves long days of walking and steep ascents and descents. The highest altitude on the trek is 5,545 meters (18,192 feet) at Kala Patthar, which can be challenging for some trekkers. 

            Altitude sickness is also a big concern for trekkers, as our body needs time to acclimate to the high altitude. Therefore, taking proper rest days and following a slow and steady pace while ascending is important. 

            The trek’s weather conditions are also challenging, with temperatures dropping significantly at higher altitudes and the possibility of snow and rain. 

            Trekkers need to be well-prepared with proper gear and items of clothing. Overall, the Everest Base Camp trek requires good physical fitness and mental determination. It is achievable with proper preparation and guidance from experienced trekking guides.

            Is the Everest Base Camp Trek beginner-friendly?

            Despite being a challenging and one of the longest treks, it is indeed beginner-friendly. However, this does not mean that you can just sit and hop on the trek and expect to do it easily. Beginners need a few weeks of hiking and indulgence in physical activities like yoga and exercise.

            So, if your definition of a beginner-friendly trek means just hopping on the trail and completing the trek, then the Everest base camp trek is not the one.

            everest-base-camp-tent

            What is the elevation of the Everest Base camp trek?

            The starting elevation of the Everest Base Camp trek is  2800 m (9186.352 feet) at Lukla. Moving forward from Lukla it slowly increases and gets to the highest altitude of the entire trek at Kala Patthar which is 5545 m (18,192 feet).

            Physical condition and experience required for the trek

            Talking about your body now, one can not have any fatal injuries and illnesses related to the lungs, heart, and limbs. Trekkers need to have good core strength for prolonged walking. And about altitude sickness, you need to train your breathing and lungs through short walks and hikes. In conclusion, one needs to have good health and good physical strength to complete the Everest base camp trek.

            Group trek/ private trek, or a solo trek

            Solo trekking in the Mountain region of Nepal is not allowed since April 1st, 2023. However, the Everest region is an exception. Therefore, you can still trek to Everest alone. It is still recommended to do so with a guide or a team of hikers. If you want to trek Everest Base Camp on a budget and save money, then trekking in groups is the best solution.

            Communication during the Everest base camp trek

            The most common way to communicate while on the Everest Base Camp trek is through Wi-Fi or telephone services provided by the teahouses. In areas with good telecommunication services, you can use your cell phone with a SIM card from Nepal’s telecommunication service.  Likewise, in case of an emergency, you can also use the guide’s cell phone.

            Note: Make sure to check beforehand if there are any extra fees for using the teahouse Wi-Fi services.

            Accommodation on the Everest Base Camp trek

            There is ample accommodation in the Everest region. The most common forms of accommodation are teahouses and lodges. One gets basic or luxury accommodation based on how much you are willing to pay. Even the basic accommodation is very warm, comfortable, and well-facilitated. Usually, the rooms have two twin beds and a shared bathroom.

            Everest-view-hotel

            Food during the trek

            The staple and most served food in the Everest Base Camp trek is Dal Bhat (lentils and rice ). Since the Himalayas are inhabited by the Sherpas, one can enjoy sherpa food like Shyakpa/Shakpa, Thukpa, Thenduk, etc. Tibetan bread, eggs (scrambled, omelets, and boiled), milk, bread butter and jam, cereals, Nepali pancakes, tea, coffee, etc., are the most common teahouse breakfast. For lunch and dinner, the options are soup, macaroni, roti ( tortilla), noodles, momo, etc. And while accommodating the luxurious hotels, the food options are limitless go for Western, Nepali whatever you want. $25 to $ 30 (max) covers expenses for 3 heavy meals per day.

            Electricity/battery recharge and water resources

            All the hotels and teahouses have electricity. But in teahouses (some) charge a small amount on an hourly basis to let you charge your cameras, phones, etc. So, for the ones that do not need to be recharged that frequently, it is better to set them before in the hotel at Kathmandu/ Pokhara. For other devices like cell phones, we suggest carrying power banks and portable solar chargers.

            While you are in teahouses and hotels, you get drinking water. And on the trail, there are many natural water resources. Fill them in your water bottle, put in purifying tablets, and voila! Ready to drink. One can always buy a packed water bottle.

            Trek safety and altitude sickness

            The Everest base camp trek takes you to an altitude of 5400+ m, so anyone, even people with good health and many years of experience in trekking, can feel nauseous and short of breath. Therefore, make sure to do everything to avoid altitude sickness by acclimatizing and checking for symptoms every now and then. Even while trekking at a lower altitude, we provide you with all the safety instructions.

            Note: If anyone suffers from mountain sickness, the trek should be paused until they are back to health.

            Nepal tourist Visa

            Foreigners (excluding Indian citizens) need a tourist visa to enter Nepal for the trek. They can either get the visa from the Nepali diplomatic mission or embassy in their own country or get it at Tribhuvan International Airport upon arrival, provided they meet the criteria. As getting a tourist visa in Nepal can be too much of a hassle for foreigners, it is better to get one from their nation’s Embassy.

            Nepal also provides a Gratis Visa. Gratis Visa is a type of visa that is issued for free in case you fall under the category set by Nepal. 

            Nepal provides gratis visas to people who fall under the categories mentioned below:

            • SAARC citizens ( Afghans not included)
            • Children below 10 years ( US not included)
            • Indian citizens and Chinese citizens
            • Nepalese with foreign citizenship
            • China, Brazil, and Thailand officials

            So, if you are eligible to get a Gratis Visa, make sure to seize the opportunity to save some extra cash.

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              Kala Patthar Trek: Ultimate Guide & Tips

              Kala Patthar is in the Khumbu region’s South side of Pumori. Although it is referred to as a mountain, in a true geographical manner, Kala Patthar is not a mountain as it has a prominence of 10 m. 

              It has an elevation of 5644 meters/ 18519 ft. Kala Patthar gets its name from its rock formation’s shade, which is black.‘Kala’ translates to black, and ‘Patthar’ translates to rock in English. The “Black Rock”, AKA Kala Patthar, is known for the majestic Everest’s most stunning and obstructed views.

              Other than Mt.Everest’s view from the top, it is equally adventurous and cherished by the climbers and trekkers for the thrill of ascent. After a total of 2 hours’ climb, one gets to the summit of Kala Patthar. 

              The viewpoint flaunts the golden sunset and sunrise on Everest, along with other mountains like Lhotse Himal / Mountain (8516 m / 27940 Ft.), Pumori Himal (7161 m/ 23494 Ft.), Changtse Himal (7543 m/ 24747 Ft.) and the Mahalangur range.

              How To Get To Kala Patthar?

              Gateway to the Kata Patthar’s trek is Lukla. There are two ways to reach Lukla. The first is to take a flight from Kathmandu to Lukla, and the second is to drive to Salleri and then trek to Lukla.

              Route from Salleri starts with a drive from Kathmandu either in a public or private/reserved vehicle. Then, take a jeep from Salleri to Thame Danda and trek to Lukla, which is about 5 hours to 6 hours long.

              Alternatively, one can drive to Jiri from Kathmandu and then trek to Lukla. Kala Patthar is about 34.2 km from Lukla and takes about six days if you trek 5 hours per day following the classic Everest Base Camp trek. 

              Likewise, if someone doesn’t want to trek for health reasons or due to insufficient time, go for the Kala Patthar helicopter tour. (more on it later)

              When Is the Best Time To Visit Kala Patthar?

              Like almost every trek in Nepal, the best time around the year to visit Kala Patthar is during the Autumn and Spring seasons. These two seasons have the best weather, bringing the highest possibility of catching the magical panoramic view. Remember the closest view to Everest, along with the majestic sunset/ sunrise.

              Moreover, if you plan the Kala Patthar trip specifically to catch the sunrise or sunset view, then we suggest trying to catch the sunset. By that, we do not imply that sunsets are more magical than sunrises, as both are equally hypnotizing. However, it is easier to catch sunset via camera than sunrise. If you have a day to spare, try to see both sunrise and sunset.

              Everest-Kala-Pathar

              What Are The Highlights of the Kala Patthar Trek?

              Here is a list of highlights of Nepal’s one of the most sought after trek, Kala Patthar:

              • 360 degrees view of the neighboring snow-white mountains
              • Behold the view of the majestic Khumbu Glacier (the world’s highest glacier).
              • Trek through the Sagarmatha National Park and explore the flora and fauna it shelters.
              • Get insight into the lifestyle of local Sherpas.
              • Explore Tibetan tradition 
              • Indulge yourself into the regional heartwarming cuisines.

               

              How Difficult Is The Trek To Kala Patthar?

              Despite not being a proper mountain, there is a big queue looking forward to the Kala Patthar climb. There are no special and advanced climbing skills required for it. However, it is pretty difficult and requires good physical strength. 

              So, beginners who are new to treks are suggested not to opt for the Kala Patthar trek. If you want to complete it anyway, we suggest you do small hikes and short treks for about two months. Prepare your body for the trek and remain as physically active as possible.

              Everest-Kalapathar-map

              Kala Patthar Helicopter Tour

              There are numerous travel agencies in Nepal specially in Kathmandu and Pokhara that offer a Helicopter tour to Kala Patthar. These tour are of two types: Kala Patthar Helicopter tour and Kala Patthar tour with landing. 

              Kala Patthar’s Helicopter tour starts from Kathmandu and flies to the Khumbu region. It flaunts the panoramic views of Everest along with other mountains, beautiful landscapes, and glaciers. A helicopter/chopper typically carries five people at once. After flying for about four hours from Kathmandu, you will be embraced by the Everest region.

              However, the tour to Kala Patthar with landing is a little different. First, one takes a flight from Kathmandu to Lukla. The first landing at Lukla is made to refuel the helicopter. Then, the chopper flies to the Kala Patthar and finally lands at the viewpoint.

              The total cost of the Helicopter tour depends on the number of people in the group accompanying you. However, the approximate price of the tour per person ranges from $1150 to $1400. The group is likely to pay an additional $500 for an extra shuttle if need be. 

              Extra shuttles are managed when the weight limit is not followed, which is 240 kg for a single shuttle and 500 kg for a double shuttle. So, the better way to do it is to watch the weight of the luggage you carry.

              A Few Pieces Of Advice To Make Your Kala Patthar Trek Better

              Planning the Kala Patthar trek wisely and preparing for the worst ensures the trip is filled with happy memories. It also saves you from possible troubles on the trail. So, here is how you can do that:

              • Firstly, as the trek gains quite an elevation, make sure you acclimatize enough. Also, never push beyond your physical strength and rest enough before resuming the trek the other day.
              • While on the trail, eat food filled with higher nutritional values that give you the energy to walk long hours. Stay away from oily and greasy food that tires you down. Moreover, do not consume alcohol, tobacco and smoke on the trail.
              • Pack heat-insulated clothes, waterproof jackets, waterproof boots, crampon shoes and polarized glasses. Polarized glasses protect your eyes from sunlight and the cold air at higher altitudes.
              • Always check weather updates before starting the trek. This helps avoid possible encounters with natural hazards like snow storms, avalanches, and landslides.
              • Carry a water bottle with you and stay hydrated at all times.
              • Be careful while hiring potters and guides. Check their identifications, qualifications, work history and reviews to avoid getting scammed.
              • Likewise, when choosing a travel agency, make sure they have authorized certifications and also check their reviews online
              • While on the trail, respect local culture and traditions.
              • Take a first aid kit with over the counter top medicines for mountain/altitude sickness.
              • Last but not least, do not damage cultural heritages or leave your trash on the trek and follow the phrase “Leave nothing but footprints, take nothing but memories.”

               

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                Best Time For Annapurna Circuit Trek

                The Annapurna Circuit trek is one of the most blissful journeys in the Annapurna region. Its classic route starts from Besi Sahar and takes around 12 to 18 days to complete. The highest landmark of the Annapurna Circuit Trek is at the Thorang La pass (5416 m / 17769.03 ft). 

                While you can complete the Annapurna Circuit trek any time of the year, some seasons are better than others. The Spring and Autumn seasons are more suitable than the Winter and Summer/ Rainy seasons. Let’s see why!

                Annapurna Circuit trek is the Spring season

                Spring Season is the best time around the year for the Annapurna Circuit trek. First, the temperature in the spring season is just perfect for the trek. The average temperature on the trail during this time is around 10 degrees Celsius to 25 degrees Celsius. Likewise, days in the spring season are longer, so trekkers have ample time to complete the trek before sunset.

                Similarly, as there is very little chance of rain, the skies are clear. So, the trails flaunt the stunning, unobstructed panoramic views. The wildflowers and other vegetation blooming their best add to the springs’ beauty.

                Annapurna Circuit trek is the Summer/Rainy/Monsoon season

                As the summer ends, Nepal welcomes the summer season, which is full of rain. Continuous and heavy rainfall is a major concern for the Annapurna Circuit trek in the Monsoon season. Likewise, trails are slippery, making them hard to walk on.

                Moreover, the clouds block the scenic views, and you won’t be able to soak it all in. The average temperature during the monsoon season is 12 to 30 degrees Celsius. However, if you plan to make a Circuit trek in the monsoon season, check the weather forecast daily before hitting the trail. Never forget to carry water-resistant gear and raincoats. Most importantly, always confirm that trails are not damaged by rain.

                Annapurna Circuit trek in the Autumn season

                Along with the Spring season, Autumn is the best time for the Annapurna Circuit trek. As the Monsoon ends, the temperature drops and the rain stops pouring. The average temperature of the autumn season in the Annapurna circuit trek is approximately -5 degrees Celsius to 17 degrees Celsius.

                With the rainy season ending, the clouds start clearing up. Hence, trekkers are blessed with the best view possible. Another advantage of trekking during this time is Nepal is colored with a festive vibe. So, you get to be part of their culture and tradition in the best way possible. Remember that during the last months of the season, the days get shorter, so you have fewer hours to be on the trail.

                Map-Annapurna-Circuit

                Annapurna circuit trek in the winter season

                The temperatures around the Himalayas during the Winter Season are cruel. Moreover, the weather changes with a split second. Snow storms and avalanches appear out of nowhere, which don’t just interrupt treks but may injure you badly in the worst case with no rescue. These natural hazards may even cost your life.

                The average temperature of the Annapurna Circuit trek in the winter season is around -5 to -14 degrees Celsius. Even though trekking in Winter is hard, it is not entirely impossible. You just have to make sure to be warm at all times and carry insulating trekking clothes and shoes. Carry crampons to keep your balance on the snow. And lastly but most importantly, make sure to check the weather update beforehand to avoid encountering natural hazards. Also, have good travel insurance that provides emergency rescue services. 

                In conclusion, the spring and autumn are the best times for the Annapurna Circuit trek. Likewise, the Winter and Monsoon seasons are fine for the trek if you follow the safety measures.

                Note: The temperature in the lower altitudes is lower in every season and decreases as the altitude increases.

                Annapurna Base Camp Trek Difficulty

                The Annapurna Base Camp trek is graded as moderately difficult; however, numerous factors determine its difficulty level. Some of them are the duration of the trek, previous trekking experience, your physical activeness and endurance, the season you trek in,  more or less the route one takes, etc. 

                There are no technical climbing or special skills required for the trek, but it requires you to walk at least 5 to 6 hours a day through rugged paths and stone stairs. Let us dive deeper into the main factors that make a difference in the Annapurna Base Camp trek’s difficulty.

                Previous trekking experience

                Your previous trekking experiences are truly the key to knowing how difficult the Annapurna Base Camp trek is for you. If you have a record of indulging in treks and have successfully completed a few ones, then the Annapurna Base Camp trek is just a piece of cake for you. 

                But if you do not have the habit of treks and hikes, it gets a little hard to get the hang of it. For those new to trekking, you should go on small hikes. This helps increase your stamina and helps your body adapt well to new environments.

                Altitude

                The problems with adjusting to increasing altitude are not new for Himalayas trekking. As you keep gaining altitude, the acute mountain sickness gets severe.

                It shows more dangerous (sometimes fatal) effects like HAPE (High Altitude Pulmonary Edema) and HACE (High Altitude Cerebral Edema). To stay safe from altitude sickness, it is important to acclimatize properly, stay hydrated, and pay attention to what you eat.

                Mount-annapurna-from-its-base-camp

                Season for the Annapurna Base Camp trek

                The season you pick for the trek determines its difficulty level. It is better to opt for the spring or autumn/fall seasons to reduce the trek’s difficulty. These two seasons are neither too hot nor too cold, making it perfect for the Annapurna Base Camp trek.

                Deciding to trek during the winter and summer/rainy seasons, however, increases the trek’s difficulty. Due to extreme cold, there is a high possibility of encountering snow storms and avalanches and getting first bites. 

                Likewise, Summer experiences heavy and continuous rainfall, making trekking harder than it already is. The summer is scorching hot at lower altitudes, and it gets hard to trek continuously for 6 to 7 hours a day.

                Choosing the trail for the Annapurna Base Camp trek

                There are a few trails known for the Annapurna  Base Camp trek. The route you take and the duration of the trek are affected simultaneously. It is highly advised not to take alternative routes unless you are trekking with a group, as it is difficult to find good teahouses or lodges 

                These routes can be dangerous and have high risks of getting lost. Considering physical challenges, there are not many differences with the trails, but talking about security, there sure are pros and cons.

                Is the Annapurna Base Camp trek beginner-friendly?

                Yes, the trek to Annapurna’s base camp is actually beginner-friendly. Newbies can go on this trek with few preparations, like improving themselves physically.

                Moreover, learn about acclimatization, research the trek and short hikes, and hire certified guides to accompany them. 

                Knowing all the first aid required, being aware of the possible natural hazards, and eating high-energy food. Annapurna Base Camp is your first embarkment to the Himalayas as long as you do these things.

                Annapurna-Base-Camp-Expedition

                Final Say

                All in all, the Annapurna Base Camp trek is moderately difficult and beginner-friendly. By following all the suggestions mentioned above, one can easily embark on the journey to the base of the majestic Mt. Annapurna.

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