Nepal Trek: Reach New Heights with the 5 best treks in Nepal

Nepal treks are some of the most sought after and best trekking routes in the world. With captivating mountains, and mesmerizing views, the routes in the Himalayas are amazing. A Nepal trek is characterized by paths that wind through some of the tallest mountains in the world, have a lot to offer in terms of culture, heritage and scenic views. The various hiking paths have been recognized by hikers around the world as experiences you can’t pass up!

Depending on what you are looking for as a trekker, you can go after some of the paths that lead you up towards the 8,000 meter peaks, which include some of the top treks in Nepal: like the Everest Base Camp Trek, and the Annapurna Base Camp Trek. However, if the massive peaks are not what you are looking for, Nepal treks have plenty to offer in terms of easier hikes or even shorter duration hikes!

Nepal has so much to offer while you trek in Nepal. Whereas, no matter what your trekking style is – trekking by yourself without a guide, staying in tea-houses while hiking, or even going for a more rugged experience by staying in tents – you will be able to find it in the Himalaya region! 

This article will discuss trekking in Nepal, as well as offer up some of the top treks in Nepal! Additionally, it will offer up a list of some of the best treks in Nepal based on the region they reside in.

5 top treks have not considered in Nepal:

Our f top treks in Nepal that don’t get enough attention from trekkers are:

  1. Dhaulagiri Circuit
  2. Mardi Himal Trek
  3. Tsho Rolpa Lake Trek
  4. Shey Phoksundo
  5. Kanchenjunga Trek

At the end of the blog, we will also cover important information to know about trekking in Nepal, as well as some gear you may want to consider for your hike in the Himalayas.

1. Dhaulagiri Circuit:

Nepal Trek - Dhaulagiri trekking in Nepal

The Dhaulagiri Circuit Trek is quite demanding and is considered to be a strenuous trek. We suggest this trek for hikers that have previous experience trekking at high altitudes. The trek reaches heights above the point where high altitude sickness can affect hikers. Moreover, as it is a 15 day hike, it is one of the longer top treks on this list.

The Dhaulagiri Circuit Trek will provide you with magnificent views of Dhaulagiri (8,167 meters), which is the 7th highest mountain in the world. The circuit hike will provide the hiker with an experience that covers everything from remote and rugged landscapes, to small village life with opportunities to participate in Nepali culture and heritage.

It is possible to trek without a guide, however, due to the difficulty and remoteness of the trek, it is recommended to go with a guide. Also, if you go with a guide and are feeling adventurous, you can also look to take on the chance to summit Dhampus Peak (6,060 m). It’s important to note that this option will take significant skill and experience, as you will need to be able to handle ice axes and crampons!

Dhaulagiri Circuit Trek Quick Facts:

Duration15 days
Type of TrekTrekking with opportunities to participate in Nepali culture and heritage
Maximum Altitude5,360 meters
Trek DifficultyDifficult, trek will be strenuous to people not used to trekking
Hike AccommodationHotels, tea houses and camping
Best Season to TrekMarch to May and September to November 

2. Mardi Himal Trek:

Nepal Trek - Mardi Himal Top treks in Nepal

The Mardi Himal is one of my personal favorite treks in Nepal, and I consider it one of the best treks in Nepal as well! As it is a less traveled trek, you get an opportunity to experience the scenic views, and small villages along the way with peace and quiet! Moreover, the Mardi Himal is a great short trek that can be combined with another trek like Poon Hill or Annapurna Base Camp Trek.

The trek has multiple starting and ending points, and depending on if you combine it with another trek will depend on the overall difficulty and length of the trek. That being said, overall, Mardi Himal is a relatively easy trek that can be completed by almost any level of hiker. 

Mardi Himal can be completed in a relatively short amount of time if you are short on time while traveling in Nepal. Whereas, I was able to complete the trek in three days after finishing the Poon Hill trek – I started the trek from Landruk. However, this took a great deal of endurance to finish the trek so quickly. I advise going much slower so you can enjoy different camps along the way, as well as high camp once you arrive there! 

Finally, the trek is pretty straightforward and easy to follow, this is a trek you can easily do without a guide!

Mardi Himal Trek Quick Facts:

Duration4 days
Type of TrekTrekking and hiking, with opportunities to take in culture at the lower camps along the hiking route
Maximum Altitude4,500 meters
Trek DifficultyEasy trek, can be done solo with no guide
Hike AccommodationTea houses / Guest houses
Best Season to TrekMarch to May and September to November 

3. Tsho Rolpa Lake Trek:

Nepal trek - Tsho Rolpa Lake Trek

The Tsho Rolpa Lake trek is another gem in terms of Nepal Treks. Whereas, the trek is not very popular, and thus hikers will have a better opportunity to enjoy less crowded paths and routes while hiking. Even Though it is less popular, the trail is well defined and developed, with plenty of ample places to stay and enjoy the scenery. 

The trekking route is found east of Kathmandu, in the Rolwaling region. Although the trek is next to the Everest region, one of the most popular, and best trekking opportunities in Nepal, not many  people find their way to the Tsho Rolpa Lake trek. For someone that has trekked to the largest glacial lakes in Nepal, it remains a mystery why more hikers don’t find it to be one of the top treks in Nepal.

This trek in Nepal, has more to offer than just the glacial lake. It also offers constant panoramic views of the Himalayas and more specifically the Gaurishankar Himal (7134m). In general, the trek can be strenuous to some climbers, and therefore, we would rank it a medium difficulty. For a more complete recap of this beautiful and unknown trek in Nepal, check out our Tsho Rolpa Lake trek recap!

Tsho Rolpa Lake Trek Quick Facts:

Duration5 days
Type of TrekTrekking and hiking, with opportunities to take in culture along the way. Take in the heritage of agricultural practices in Nepal.
Maximum Altitude4,540 meters
Trek DifficultyModerate difficulty
Hike AccommodationTea houses / Guest houses
Best Season to TrekMarch to May and September to November 

4. Shey Phoksundo Trek

Nepal Trek - Shey Phoksundo Lake Trek

The Shey Phoksundo trek is one of the best treks in Nepal for people looking for easier hikes. Whereas, the maximum elevation is relatively low, and hikers can also choose to limit the maximum number of kilometers hooked per day. 

Overall, the trek offers a great deal to see different aspects of Nepal. For example, you can choose to experience Nepali culture while hiking, or you can decide to take in the fauna and flora of the area! Moreover, there is even an opportunity to explore the holi land of Bonpo. The area offers a unique look into Tibetan culture, as well as an opportunity to explore the Tshowa Gompa monastery which is over 800 years old!

This top trek in Nepal offers views of Phoksundo lake which provides fabulous reflections of the mountains towering above. If you are looking for one of the best treks in Nepal, while enjoying a more easy trek, then the Shey Phoksundo trek is for you. One thing to think about is that it will take two flights from Kathmandu to reach the trails head. 

Shey Phoksundo Trek Quick Facts:

Duration7/8 days
Type of TrekTrekking and hiking; Cultural and Religious heritage; Good for Botanists
Maximum Altitude3,660 meters
Trek DifficultyModerate difficulty
Hike AccommodationTea houses / Guest houses
Best Season to TrekMarch to May and September to November.
Also possible to trek in the winter!

5. Kanchenjunga Trek:

Nepal Trek - kanchanjunga trekking in Nepal

Kanchenjunga Trek is one of the more difficult treks on this roundup, with over 200 Km needing to be covered to complete this 21 day Nepal trek. Although we have listed it as a strenuous trek, it is accessible by most skill levels as long as the person has a reasonable fitness level. It is important to remember that it will be a few weeks of sustained walking in the mountains, so make sure you are up to the task!

The hike is in a protected area, and therefore requires a guide and at least a small group of people to be able to trek in the area. The terrain can be rough and difficult with rocky trails and difficult elements to traverse along the way. Make sure that you have a good pair of hiking boots for the trail – Need advice on which hiking boots are best for this trail? Have a look at our best hiking boots roundup!

This is one of the best hiking trails in Nepal. It is more remote than some of the other treks due to its price tag, and the need to get special permits for the area. Moreover, at 21 days of hiking it makes it difficult for some travelers to take on the task of hiking the Kanchenjunga trek. However, if you have the time, and can afford the trek, it will prove to be one of the best treks in Nepal!

Kanchenjunga Trek Trek Quick Facts:

Duration21 days
Type of TrekTrekking and hiking;
Maximum Altitude4,785 meters
Trek DifficultyStrenuous difficulty
Hike AccommodationTea houses and camping is required
Best Season to TrekMarch to May and September to November.

Nepal Treks – Additional Treks in Nepal

Looking for a different Nepal trek? Below we have compiled different treks in Nepal by their regions. If you are wanting to trek in Nepal, this list can give you a great starting point for where to start. In the list below you can find some of the top treks in Nepal:

Annapurna Region Trek

This list of Nepal treks focus on the Annapurna Region!

Nepal Trek Name in Annapurna RegionNumber of days
Annapurna Circuit Trek21 total days
Annapurna Base Camp Trek16 total days
Mohare Danda Trekking11 total days
Ghorepani Poonhill Trek9 total days
Mardi Himal Trekking12 total days
Annapurna Dhaulagiri Trek14 total days
Tilicho Lake Trekking17 total days
Panchase Hill Trekking9 total days

Everest Region Nepal Treks

Looking to bask in the shadows of the tallest mountain in the world while you enjoy your Nepal treK? Check out these Everest Region treks:

Nepal Trek Name in Everest RegionNumber of days
Everest Base Camp Trek16 total days
Gokyo Valley Trek14 total days
Cho-la Pass Trek21 total days
Everest three High Passes Trek 21 total Days
Renjo Pass Trek14 total days
Jiri Everest Base Camp Trek28 total days
Amadablam Base Camp Trek15 total days
Pikey Peak Base Camp Trek11 total days

Trekking Routes in The Langtang Region:

A few of the trekking routes that are available in the Langtang region of Nepal include:

Nepal Trek Name in Langtang RegionNumber of days
Langtang Valley Trek12 total days
Langtang Gosainkunda Chisapani Trek18 total days
Gosainkunda Lake Trek12 total days
Chisapani Nagarkot Trek5 total days
Langtang Gosainkunda Helambu Trek21 total days
Langtang Ganja La pass Trek14 total Days

Trekking Trails in the Restricted Area of Nepal:

Looking to trek where few have before? The hiking routes in the restricted area of Nepal will give you access to some of the most remote areas of the country.

Restricted Area Trekking RouteNumber of days
Mustang Trek18 Days
Manaslu Trek18 days
Tsum Valley Trek18 days
Upper Dolpo Trek24 Days
Damodar Kunda Trek22 Days
Nar Phu Valley Trek21 days

Nepal Trek Packing List:

While trekking in Nepal, it is important to pack correctly, so you are ready for any situation. Packing for a trek in Nepal doesn’t mean you need to come to the country fully stocked. There are ample places to buy almost any type of hiking gear that you could need in Kathmandu and Pokhara

Depending on what type and brand of trekking equipment you are looking for, you may be able to find it cheaper in Nepal than you could in your home country. If you decide to buy in Kathmandu or Pokhara, make sure to thoroughly check the gear, and be aware of fake equipment. If you are a seasoned vet, this shouldn’t be a problem. However, if you need help picking the right equipment for your trek, you can work with your tour operator/trekking guide to find the best hiking gear.

I do recommend getting your hiking boots before you come to Nepal. Whereas, it is always a best practice to ensure your boots fit properly, and will be comfortable throughout the entire trek. If you need help picking the right hiking boots for your trek, check out our guides:

5 Best hiking boots for under $100

Best hiking boots for men with flat feet

Best hiking boots for women with flat feet

How to choose the right trekking boots

Now, let us look at a few essential items you should have before your Nepal Trek. Be aware, that depending on which trek you choose, you may or may not need certain hiking equipment.

Essential Trekking Gear for your Nepal Trek:

The list covers a few hiking essentials that you should make sure you have before going on your adventure in the Himalayas.

Essential Trekking Clothing

  • Hiking boots: Good, comfortable trekking boots are a must. As I mentioned above, it is a good idea to get these a while before your trek, and to break them in. Nothing is worse than getting blisters on your feet while out on the trail. Also, think about which trek you are going to go on, and if you will need boots that are waterproof, or hiking boots that have crampon compatibility.
  • Sleeping bag: Having a well insulated and warm sleeping bag will come in handy while trekking to the higher elevations. Additionally, if you decide to go trekking during the winter in Nepal, you will want to carry a sleeping bag. That being said, for most treks you won’t require a sleeping bag. Also, some hiking guides will give you an option to rent a good sleeping bag from them if you want! Make sure to consider getting a sleeping pad as well for some of the camping treks we mentioned!
  • Clothing: Trekkers will want to make sure they pack enough clothes to be comfortable and warm even at high elevation. Make sure to pack clothes you can layer up and take off when needed, this should include: next-to-skin base layers, fleece second layers and water/windproof outer shell jacket. Moreover pack trekking pants and shorts, the best being ones that you can convert between them two. Finally, make sure to pack a pair of trekking socks, gloves and headwear (beanie and sun hat).

Essential Trekking Accessories

  • Trekking poles: Adjustable trekking poles will come in handy on incline days. Depending on the trek you choose, you may have steep inclines on difficult trails, for these hikes adjustable trekking poles will help you be sure footed throughout the walk.
  • Sunglasses: Sunglasses are a must when hiking in the Himalayas. Sunglasses that have high UV protection will protect your eyes from glare.
  • Daypack: A great day pack is always important, you will want to make sure it’s large enough to carry all of your essentials. But make sure that its light-weight enough for you to carry comfortably while hiking. Additionally, if you are going on a longer hike, and you have porters, you will want to get a duffle bag to pack all of your nonessential trekking gear in.
  • Headlamp: Some trekking destinations in Nepal wont have electricity. Moreover, on certain days you will need to hike in the early morning when there is limited light. Therefore, make sure you have a high quality, LED headlamp with you.
  • Additional Items: A few additional things you will want to bring with you include: Water bottle, water purification tablets or iodine drops, general medications, snacks and toiletry supplies (if you want anything specific. Most things can be purchased along the trail. However, it will cost significantly more.)

Nepal Trek – Visas:

In order to trek in Nepal, you will first need a visa to enter the country. For most countries, visas are provided on arrival the only exceptions are passport holders from the following countries, as they will need to obtain a passport in their home country: Afghanistan, Cameroon, Ethiopia, Ghana, Iraq, Liberia, Nigeria, Palestine, Somalia, Swaziland and Zimbabwe need to obtain a visa in their country of origin before arriving in Nepal).

Visa fees are as follows (2022/2023):

  • 15 Days – 30 USD
  • 30 Days – 50 USD
  • 90 Days – 125 USD

Visa extensions can be obtained if you wish to stay longer than the 90 days. Whereas, tourist visas can be done for a minimum of 15 days, which will cost USD 45 and USD 3 per day for additional days.

TIMS Card and Permits to Trek in Nepal:

To go trekking in Nepal you will need to obtain a TIMS card. If you are trekking with an agency, they will take care of all of the processing for you. However, if you are trekking by yourself you will need to apply for a TIMS card in Kathmandu. To apply for a TIMS card to go trek in Nepal, you will need the following 

  • Trekking entry and exit dates (can be an estimate)
  • Entry and exit points for your trek
  • Route/itinerary for your trek
  • Emergency contact info for Nepal (can use a tour agency as a contact)
  • Emergency contact info for someone in your home country
  • Your insurance policy number, their phone number, and what your policy covers

The following documents will be needed to complete your TIMS card registration:

  • Copy of your passport
  • 2 passport-sized photos

You can get more information regarding the process of getting your TIMS card from Nepal Tourism Border’s website.

Nepal Trek – Permits: 

In addition to the TIMS card, you will need to also get a trekking permit for your desired trekking route and destination. Moreover, the same information will be needed to get the permit for trekking. You will need a few additional pieces of information, including the following:

First, you will need to choose your desired trekking route. The options include the following:

  • Annapurna Sanctuary Trek
  • Jomsom Trek
  • Jomsom Muktinath Trek
  • Everest Base Camp Trek
  • Annapurna Circuit Trek
  • Sikles Eco Trek
  • Mardi Himal Trek
  • Upper Mustang Trek
  • Dhampus Trek
  • Kharpani (Tatopani) Trek
  • Chandrakot Trek
  • Ghandruk Circuit Trek
  • Machhapuchhre Model Trek
  • Ghorepani Trek/Poon Hill Trek
  • Ghorepani Ghandruk Circuit Trek
  • Khayar Tal Trek
  • Tilicho Tal Trek
  • Tatopani Trek

The additional information that you will need is regarding the trekking company you are going with, and information about your trekking guide. However, if you are going with a trekking company, they will more than likely take care of the registration process for you. Therefore, if you are a solo trekker, or going without a guide, information regarding the guide will not be needed.

If you require any other information about getting a trekking permit in Nepal, you can have a look at the Trekking Agencies’ Association of Nepal (TAAN) website, and information on permits for the Annapurna Conservation Area Project (ACAP) for more information.

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