For many of our treks, you can choose between staying in tea-houses or camping. A tea-house is a local run guest house, but standards vary enormously. In popular areas such as Annapurna, tea houses are more like hotels, with hot water, Western food and private rooms, whereas in more remote areas, they are far simpler and more authentically Nepali. Tea-house trekking is less expensive than camping, and is suitable for small groups. With large groups, irrespective of the area, it is more practical to camp. A team of guides, porters and cooks mean you trek in comfort and provides international-style food of a high standard.
For trekkers with no previous experience, we offer a diverse range of easy treks. By easy, we mean that the trek involves no difficult climbing or ascents to high altitudes, takes usually no more than a week and is suitable for anyone. However, you should not think that loss of height means loss of interest; while our more challenging treks get you closer to a small number of mountain ranges, lower altitude treks often provide colourful horizons of a whole series of ranges. High or low, mountain villages reachable only by several days walk from the road brim with character.
The Ghorepani and Jomsom treks follow well-trodden trails. The tea-houses along these routes offer hot water and Western-style food. Of course, these treks are not popular without reason and you will find the terrain and views superb. If the idea of tea-house trekking appeals to you, but you would prefer to escape from the crowds, then the Helambu trek could be your ideal choice. You trek up to within sight of enormous snowy mountains, and then wind at a leisurely pace through a spectacular green valley. The tea-houses are simpler here, but you will benefit from the peace of the unspoilt villages and the friendly welcome of your hosts. To really get away from it all, try the Shivapuri trek, Siklis trek or the Royal Trek. Whilst you will still pass through many remote villages, these regions are so unspoilt as to have no tea-houses, and you will need to camp. Again, the range of mountains you can view on these treks is superb.
Grade 2 treks are more challenging than Grade 1, and are suitable for any walker looking for something a little more energetic. They are longer (10-20 days,) involve more walking up and down and climb to higher altitudes, where you will be rewarded with close-up views of big mountains. For a well-trodden route with good tea-house facilities, you could choose the Annapurna Base Camp trek, which gets you close to glaciers and affords spectacular mountain views. For something a little more remote, but still with the option of simple tea-houses, try a trek in the beautiful Langtang region.
From the Langtang Base Camp, you have the additional option of scaling a trekking peak. For a moderate trek out in the wilds, Ganesh Himal would be a good choice. With only 100 visitors a year to this region, the local cultural traditions are still very much intact. On this trek, you cross the high Singla Pass (4600m.) The Rara trek is similarly remote and is a good option for the summer season as rainfall is low. As tourists are relatively unknown in these last two regions, you need to camp.
Grade 3 treks should only be undertaken by those with some previous mountain walking experience. They ascend to altitudes of up to 5500m and involve some steep climbing, although it is never necessary to use ropes. Treks at this level can he arranged for periods of 7-21 days.
For a popular and spectacular trek, with the possibility of staying in well-developed tea houses, the Annapurna Circuit is a good choice. A gradual ascent through a green river valley will lead you up to a number of high passes, where you will reach the altitude of 5416m. This trek will give you a close insight into Tibetan culture. Another understandably popular trek, with good tea house facilities, is the Everest Base Camp. The goal of this trek speaks for itself, but in achieving it, you cross a glacier, see Mt Everest and a whole variety of soaring peaks and experience the rich Sherpa culture. For a real adventure in wild and restricted areas, that see less than 300 visitors per year, you could trek in Mustang or to Makalu Base Camp. The Makalu trek traverses many high passes before reaching the Base Camp at 5000m. The Tibetan plateau of Mustang is a wild, treeless desert. The last two treks are possible only if you camp.
Grade 4 treks are only for real adventurers. They involve steep ascents to high altitudes with the possibility of some rope climbing. You’ll need stamina to complete one of these treks, as it can take 20-28 days to journey to the heart of the wildernesses that they cross. All are camping expeditions. The exception is the Simikot trek, which is very remote with a truly undeveloped culture (quite a shock.) This can be accomplished in a shorter time (7-14 days.) However, you can also use the little-visited Simikot as the starting point for a trip to Mount Kailash (20 days.)
A trek through the isolated Dolpo region is one of the few good possibilities for the summer months, as the area gets little rain. Manaslu, like Annapurna, is a circuit trek and passes through Tibetan villages in a little-visited, restricted area. A trip to Kanchenjunga, the third highest mountain in the world, will take you into the remote far east region of Nepal. Here, Sherpa, Rai and Limbu culture happily co-exist. If you want the ultimate challenge, the Dhaulagiri trek is the most difficult of our featured treks. This wild trek involves challenging trekking on rough high terrain, perhaps with a ropes pitch or two.