Our Kanchenjunga Circuit trek gives an opportunity to reach base camp of mountain Kanchenjunga, the world’s third tallest mountain. The word Kanchenjunga means “Five Treasures of the Great Snow” referring to five summits that constitutes Kanchenjunga. This trek is ideal for trekkers who enjoy serenity and solitude and is considered best trekking trail in eastern part of Nepal. While doing Kanchenjunga Circuit trek, one can view richness in biodiversity, lush landscape, tropical jungles of Rhododendron, Oak and Chestnuts, alpines forest, range of flora and fauna etc.
Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek starts from Taplejung and passes through villages of Rai and Limbu indigenous community, fields, terraced farmlands and Rhododendron forest. 27 day journey treat travelers with less crowded path with unique insight of rural Nepalese lifestyle of eastern region of Nepal.
Day 01- Arrival in Kathmandu
Welcome to Nepal! Ramdung Expedition representative will meet you at the airport and bring you to your hotel in Kathmandu. You can take a rest or if you are arriving earlier, can visit around the city.
In the evening we will hold a briefing session regarding your trip and get to know your Nepali trekking companion. We’ll be happy to answer any question you may have.
Day 2- Sightseeing trip / Trek preparation
Kathmandu valley is has fantastic UNESCO world heritages all around. Today after the breakfast, you’ll be visiting Boudhanath Stupa (the largest Buddhist shrines in the world), Pashupatinath (the holiest Hindu temple in the world), Durbar Squares (Palaces and fortresses of medieval Kings). The lifestyle of the Nepalese people, holy sadhus and monks, the fascinating history and the awe-inspiring architecture will be the highlight of this day. You can also buy or rent any needed gear or clothing from trekking/mountaineering shops.
Day 03 – Fly Kathmandu to Bhadrapur, drive to Ilam
Early morning flight to Bhadrapur. Then we drive to Ilam. O/N Hotel (BLD)
Day 04 – Drive Ilam to Taplejung and Suketar, trek to Phurumbu
We leave Ilam early passing through it’s famous tea and cardamom plantations sites. We stop during our drive to take view of Kanchenjunga and Mount Jannu. We drive to Taplejung where we meet our staff. Take lunch and start walking upto Phurumbu. O/N Camping (BLD)
Day 05 – Phurumbu to Chirwa (1270m) 5 hrs
Trail ascends and descends steadily until we reach Sinwa. We walk down till Tawa. Again climb for some times and cross suspension bridge in Thiwa. Passing beautiful rural landscapes we reach Chirwa. Chirwa is limbu village with few lodges and shops. O/N Camping (BLD)
Day 06 – Chirwa to Sekathum (1660m) 5-6 hrs
we walk today by cardamom field and dense lush forest. We climb uphill for some hour and descend to green fields below and continue walking along Tamor river passing through dense forest. Until we reach Ghunsa river the trail is uphill and downhill time to time. Then we reach Sekathum. O/N Camping (BLD)
Day 07 – Sekathum to Amjilossa (2501m) 6-7 hrs
Today is long and challenging trekking. We first cross suspension bridge out to Sekathum and ender thick forest, ascend steep trail, descend and cross river. We climb gorge from bottom and pass by Solima village until we descend again to river. We should be very careful today while walking the trail passing the gorge. O/N Camping (BLD)
Day 08 – Amjilossa to Gybala (2730m) 6-7 hrs
We walk along river passing dense forest or Rhododendron and bamboo reaching small stone house by the river. Then climb uphill crossing small bridges. We get enjoy the stunning waterfall originating from mountain. And it is short uphill walk reaching Tibetan settlement of Gyabla. O/N camping (BLD)
Day 09 – Gybala to Ghunsa (3595m) 5-6 hrs
we start walking down to river and begin noticing the valley slowly opens widely before reaching Phale. Phale is Tibetan refugee settlement and people here sells handicrafts and homemade rugs. We then continue our walk through conifer and pine forest reaching Ghunsa which is Sherpa village. Ghunsa is known for its hydroelectricity plant and tragic helicopter crash killing 20 prominent conservationists of Nepal. O/N camping (BLD)
Day 10 – Acclimatization day
After long days of walking, today is acclimatization and res day. We will hike to Laspsan Monastery. It is better to walk rather than sitting idle. O/N camping (BLD)
Day 11 – Ghunsa to Kambachen (4050m) 6 hrs
We trek further north along river with view of magnificent mountain view.
we cross bridge at Rampuk Kharka and continue through waterfall crossing tricky section of landslide. We get to see spectacular view of Mount Jannu before reaching Kambachen. O/N camping (BLD)
Day 12 – Acclimatization day
We rest and acclimatize in Kambachen to cope our body with altitude. We’ll spend day hiking to Nuphchu Khola valley area. O/N camping (BLD)
Day 13 – Kambachen to Lhonak (4780m). 6 hrs
Challenging day is for today. We walk through rocky fields and large boulders on hillside along river bank and reach waterfall. Then cross bridge to Ramtang monastery. We come across landslide section and pass through steady pace before descending to Lhonak. O/N camping (BLD)
Day 14 – Lhonak to Pangpema/Kanchenjunga North Base Camp (5388m) 6-7 hrs
we walk along Kanchenjunga Glacier. We take precaution as we walk along rockier sections and landslide prone area. After some hour we reach Pangpema which is flat grassy base camp of Kanchenjunga in north side. O/N camping (BLD)
Day 15 – Trek back to Kambachen (4050m) 6 hrs
We retrace our route back to reach Kambachen. O/N camping (BLD)
Day 16 – Kambachen to Ghunsa (3595m) 4 hrs
We walk by same way we walk some day before. O/N camping (BLD)
Day 17 – Ghunsa to Sele le (4290m) 7 hrs
It is steep uphill walk from Ghunsa to sele le. Today, we climb through dense forest of Rhododendron. O/N camping (BLD)
Day 18 – Sele le to Cheram (3870m) 6 hrs
With mesmerizing view of south side of Jannu Himal and Makalu (world’s 6th highest mountain), we climb uphill. We’ll cross Sinion la, Mirgin la and Sinelapche Bhanjyang by strenuous trekking. Then descend steeply to Cheram. O/N camping (BLD)
Day 19 – Cheram to Ramche (4580m) and return to Cheram. 5 hrs
We ascend past the snout of Yalung Glacier and alongside Simbuwa khola. Then pass through Lapsang village reaching Ramche. We walk further up the valley or ascend ridge for tremendous view of blue sheeps. We then follow stream before climbing on moraine top until confronted by south face of Kanchenjunga. We can even consider continuing to Oktang Monastery before reaching Cheram. O/N camping (BLD)
Day 20 – Cheram to Tortong (2995m) 6 hrs
We encounter two trail. One we took while descending down from Sele le. We ignore this route and descend further down alongside Simbuwa khola enjoying peace walking through lush Rhododendron forest until we reach Tortong. O/N camping (BLD)
Day 21 – Tortong to Yamphudin (2080m) 7 hrs
We pass through Lasiya Bhanjyang which is walking uphill through trees and landslide area. The terrain changes every monsoon and gets stable in mid of October. Walking further we reach Yambhudin, which is settlement of Sherpa, Limbu and Rai community. O/N camping (BLD)
Day 22 – Yamphudin to Mamanke (1800m) 6 hrs
O/N camping (BLD)
Day 23 – Mamanke to Lali Kharka (2265m)
O/N camping (BLD)
Day 24 – Lali Kharka to Suketar
O/N camping (BLD)
Day 25 – Fly Suketar to Kathmandu
Early morning flight to Kathmandu. O/N Hotel
Day 26 – Contingency or spare day
Contingency day in case of flight delay or unforeseen circumstances delaying trek schedule. In the evening, we will host farewell dinner in traditional restaurant with cultural dance performances in celebration of your amazing trip. O/N Hotel (BD)
Day 27 – Trip ends, Farewell and departure
The journey in the mountains of Nepal comes to an end today ! At last approximately 3 hours before your scheduled flight, a representative from Ramdung Expedition will drop you to the airport. (B)
Normally, we use following 3 star standard hotels in Kathmandu depending on availability in our trekking package.
Hotel Manang. Located in touristic hub, Thamel. www.hotelmanang.com
Hotel Utse. Located in touristic hub, Thamel. www.utsehotel.com
Hotel Manaslu. Located in Lazimpat near to Thamel area. www.hotelmanaslu.com
while on trek, the lodges are fairly basic but perfectly adequate for the mountain type service. Two people will be accommodated in each room mostly in twin beds with foam mattresses. If you prefer private accommodation, you can choose “single supplement” option. It is important to consider that some places in the trek do not have sufficient lodges and rooms; in this case you’ll have to share room. Some lodges now have showers (charged at $3-$5).
FLIGHT DELAYS IN KATHMANDU TO SUKETAR
Flight between Kathmandu to Suketar is generally reliable. Being Short Take-Off & Landing (STOL) mountain airstrips, flight is dependent on the weather. Delays often happen if there is poor visibility or high winds. In case of bad weather, flight is cancelled often and to avoid missing international flights, we recommend 2-3 days extra at end of your trip.
it is mandatory to have travel insurance for the trekking and please submit us photocopy before departure to mountain. Standard policies often only cover medical evacuation to 4000m so make sure it covers up to 6000m.
You are expect to trek about 5-7 hours covering distance of 10-15 kilometer daily depending on trial conditions and state of the weather. You’ll be traveling through wilderness, remote countryside and high elevations. Trekking with a guide is not only safer but also for more enjoyable experience. Our guides and porters are expert in Himalayan treks and have more than one decades of experience in average.
It is recommended that you prepare for trek with suitable training such as climbing hills/stairs, jogging, exercise and gym to improve your stamina few months prior to trek. The trek will be more enjoyable if you are fit.
MEALS AND DRINKS
There are plenty of excellent restaurants to serve food and drinks in Kathmandu such as Rum doodles, Fire & ice, La Dolce Vita, Ktoo Steak House, Everest Steak, New Orleans, Gaia etc. Breakfast is provided at your hotel every morning. It will cost $ 3-7 per meal depending on meals item chosen and restaurant.
While on trek, the lodges or teahouse provide good quality food in sufficient quantities. Meals whilst on trek are included in the package which is breakfast, lunch, dinner and hot drinks. You can choose your meal from hotel menus. Meals in lodges are varied ranging from traditional Nepalese daal bhaat to pizza, apple pie, steak, pasta and so on.
It is safer to drink bottled, boiled and filtered water. A reasonable variety of both hard and soft drinks are available in cities and while on trek. You can purify your own water if you carry a canteen or water bottle and iodine drops or tablets.
Spring starts from March until May where temperature fluctuated between 20°c to 30°c. From June to August is summer season which is also time of monsoon with occasional thunderstorms and hot temperatures. From late September to end November is autumn and is best for trekking activities. Winter is from late November to February.
The trek will have a wide range of temperatures depending on the elevation and time of the particular day. In the mountains between 1000m-3500m, the night generally will be cool around 5°C and during the day temperatures every so often rise to 20°c. At the higher altitudes, temperatures range from 15° to -15°c.
Tips is not mandatory but generally after hard work something extra is expected. We recommend a tip for guide and porter as at least $70 (more will be appreciated).
CLOTHING AND EQUIPMENT LIST
The following are what we recommend to bring as clothing and equipment needed for the trek. Trekking gear can be rented or purchased in Kathmandu at cheaper price; we can assist you with necessary arrangement. Except for your day pack, your luggage will be carried by porters. You’ll have strong and hospitable porter for two people. The weight limit for trek is 10-13kg per person. One porter can carry 20-25kg weight. Before the trek, you can store all your excess baggage in Kathmandu at hotel or at our office and take only which is required for the trek.
Light balaclava or warm fleece hat
Sun Hat or scarf
Cotton tees or thermals
Gloves for hand
Lightweight cotton pants (long)
Thin inner socks
Thick, warm wool hiking socks
Comfortable Trekking boots
Sleeping bag rated to -20
Trekking bag or duffel bag
Large plastic bags (keeping items dry inside trek bag)
Trekking poles (recommended, optional)
Lonely Planet Nepal: A guide book of Nepal.
Annapurna: A book by Reinhold Messner about his expedition experience in the dead zone of Annapurna.
Trekking in Nepal: Written by Stephen Bezruchka is an nice book for all treks with and bibliography of additional books.
Trekking and climbing in Nepal: Written by Steve Razzetti, this book gives comprehensive knowledge of major trekking trails and climbing peaks.
Nepal Handbook: By Kerry Morgan. Recommended specially for Kathmandu Valley sightseeing’s.
Trekking in the Nepal Himalaya: By Stan Armungton. This book has detailed trek descriptions including restricted areas of Mustang, Manaslu, Dolpo and kailash.
Into Thin Air: By Jon Krakaur. A personal account of the Mount Everest disaster.
Travelers Tales: Edited by Rajendra Khadka, Traveler’s Tales, and San Francisco.
Mustang: A lost kingdom by Michel Peissel.