Kanchenjunga Trek - Itinerary
The Kanchenjunga Trek is intriguingly situated right on Nepal’s border with Sikkim and Tibet, allowing trekkers on this route to not only explore a fusion of cultures but to also have the opportunity to approach Mount Kanchenjunga, the third highest mountain in the world.
The trek begins from Suketar, and as you trek through terraced fields, meadows, and beautiful rhododendron forests, you will receive an insight into the local Tibetan culture. As you ascend you will witness the spectacular scenery of frozen lakes, crystal clear streams, and even glimpse glaciers, as you approach the close-up views of Mount Makalu, and the impressive Mount Kanchenjunga, standing at a staggering height of 8586m/28,169ft.
Lying within the famous Kanchenjunga Conservation Area, witnessing Mount Kanchenjunga means also experiencing amazing landscapes and alluring panoramic views of the Himalayas, including a range of miniature and magnificent frosty peaks, above and below 8,000m. It also means a chance to see endangered birds and animals, like the Impedance Pheasant, Red-Billed Blue Magpie, Shy Dragon, Barking Deer, Himalayan Black Bear, Musk Deer, and even Red Panda – a true treat for all animal lovers.
Unlike other trekking regions, due to its remoteness and altitude, you will encounter very few people on this trail. Therefore, we advise that anyone undertaking this trek should be physically fit, as you will need to walk for at least 6 hours a day and complete an arduous climb above Cheram. We also recommend, to make the most of the challenge, to join us for the Kanchenjunga Trek in Autumn (September to November) or Spring (March to May).
We operate the Kanchenjunga Trek in both groups and private tours, and as with all of our treks, offer a fully customizable itinerary, with personalized travel and accommodation plans available upon request. So if you want to know any more about the itinerary options, trek cost, trek difficulty, or anything else at all, then please don’t hesitate to get in touch with a member of our friendly team. Or, if you would like to read about what it’s like to experience this adventure, then check our Kanchenjunga Trek Blog.
And don’t forget – if you like the sound of this trek, but it isn’t quite what you had in mind, then why not check out some of the other Everest treks from our wide range, such as these “off the beaten trails” packages: Tilicho Lake Trek, Upper Dolpa, and Trek, and Manaslu Trek.
Day 1:Arrival in Kathmandu: On arrival, you will land at Kathmandu airport, where our friendly team will greet you and take you to your hotel. Depending on what time you arrive, you are free to take a rest, or if you are itching to start exploring, you can spend the rest of the day soaking up the atmosphere of the Capital. You will then have dinner and an overnight stay in a highly recommended hotel in the city. Dinner and overnight stay at a 3-star hotel in Kathmandu
Day 2: Sightseeing in Kathmandu valley and trek prep: After a welcoming breakfast, today you will have the opportunity to see some of Kathmandu’s most famous UNESCO-listed world heritage sights, including Pashupatinath, Boudhanath, and Swayambhunath. Once you return you will meet your guide and begin preparation for your trek. Breakfast and overnight stay at a 3-star hotel in Kathmandu
Day 3:Fly from Kathmandu to Biratnagar: We will start the day by flying from Kathmandu to Biratnagar. Depending upon the availability of flying options to Suketar from Biratnagar, you will either fly to Biratnagar and spend the night before flying to Suketar the next morning. Or, if there are no flights available to Suketar, we will drive to Phidim and spend the night there. Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, and overnight stay at hotel
Day 4: Fly from Biratnagar to Suketar or Drive from Phidim to Suketar: Depending on your journey the day before, you will be flying or driving and either way ending the day in Suketar. Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, and overnight stay at hotel
Day 5: Suketar to Mitlung: Today the trekking finally begins! It’s all downhill today to ease you into the trek. We will walk over beautiful pasture land and through several villages, cross a small river on Hangdewa and follow the riverbank of Tamor. The trail will become muddy so get out your walking poles and wade through the last part of the trail to reach Mitlung for the night. : Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, and overnight stay at Tea House
Day 6: Mitlung to Chirwa: We pick up the pace today as we both ascend and descend throughout the day. We go through Sinwa first on our journey, before heading downhill to the village of Tawa. After the Tawa we hike to Thiwa, passing through some wonderful landscape along the way. On arrival, we will get to enjoy the beautiful village of Chirwa – a small village consisting of a few teahouses and wonderful hospitality. Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, and overnight stay at Tea House
Day 7: Chirwa to Sukathum: We go from terraced fields to dense forests on our journey today. We begin uphill before descending to the Tamor River. En route, we will pass through lush green fields and Cardamom Fields. We then need to cross the Ghunsa River before the trail starts to become more gentle and we are easily lead to Sukathum for the night. Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, and overnight stay at Tea House
Day 8: Sukathum to Amjilosa: Today sees a bigger challenge. Once we have crossed the suspension bridge by Sekathum, we enter into a dense forest with a steeply ascending trail. A few more ups and downs lead us to another hike up to Solima Village. We must then pass through a gorge and along the ridge that borders the upper and lower part of the Kanchenjunga Region before completing our 7-hour walk to Amjilosa. Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, and overnight stay at Tea House
Day 9: Amjilosa to Gyabla: Another long day as we make our way to Gyabla – the Tibetan refugee settlement. We begin our trek along the riverbank and make our way through dense forests of bamboo, firs, and rhododendrons. We will cross a number of bridges, and pass by some beautiful waterfalls on the way to Gyabla. On arrival, you can receive an insight into Tibetan culture within Nepal. Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, and overnight stay Tea House
Day 10: Gyabla to Ghunsa: We start by trekking down to the river towards Phale – with lots of opportunities to purchase unique goods from the locals. Our trail today is mostly flat and carved out by conifer and pine forest so it is a pleasant walk towards Ghunsa. Ghunsa is a Sherpa settlement – unlike any areas we have previously visited. So soak up this new culture as we settle for the night. Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, and overnight stay Tea House
Day 11: Acclimatization day at Ghunsa: Today it’s time for a well-deserved rest as we relax and acclimatize to the altitude. To pass our time, we can hike up to the surrounding ridge and visit a monastery – allowing ourselves some spiritual insight on the way. Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, and overnight stay Tea House
Day 12: Ghunsa to Kambachen: Rested and revitalized from the day before, we continue onwards through some specular terrain that really exposes us to the impressive snow-capped mountains that surround us. Follow the riverbank to the northern territory and through meadows of rhododendron and wildflowers to reach Rampuk Kharka. Here things become a bit trickier as we pass through waterfalls and landslide affected areas. At an elevation of 4050m, Kambachen is a high alpine area accompanied only by a grassy plain. Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, and overnight stay Tea House
Day 13: Acclimatisation day at Kambachen: Another day of rest is needed to acclimatize to the surroundings and Lambachen makes for a great choice. We can explore the Nupcy River Valley and its beautiful surroundings but otherwise, we recommend pure rest – as this is our last day of a rest day for a while – so make sure to make the most! Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, and overnight stay Tea House
Day 14: Kambachen to Lhonak: After our rest, we hit our 7-hour trek today full of energy. We will pass through rocky fields and sizeable boulders before entering the Ramtang Valley and visit the Ramtang Monastery. With its location next to a sparkling waterfall, it’s a great place to take a break before hitting the landslide-prone areas that must be navigated with precision. Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, and overnight stay at Tea House
Day 15: Trek from Lhonak to Pangpema/Kanchenjunga North Base Camp: A shorter and more well-structured path leads us today. Only 3 hours of walking means you have time to take in the surrounding areas and enjoy the majestic mountains that surround you. Accommodation in Pangpema is not always guaranteed so our destination could also be Kanchenjunga North Base Camp. Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner with overnight stay Tea House
Day 16: Trek back from Pangpema to Kambachen: A nice gentle day as the path requires us to move fairly slowly. Enjoy the sights as make out away from Pangpema to Kambachen, a beautiful spot to enjoy and rest for the evening. Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner with overnight stay Tea House
Day 17: Kambachen to Ghunsa: Today will begin with a short descent from Kambachen, taking us out of the wild landscape of Kanchenjunga North. Beautiful forest lines lead us to Ghunsa – just a short walk away. Once here you have the entire afternoon to get some well-deserved rest as we arrive early and will be staying for the night. Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner with overnight stay Tea House
Day 18: Ghunsa to Sele Le: Today we leave behind the trail to Gyabla and embark on the steep uphill trek to Sele Le – an uninhabited area of Kanchenjunga. The trail today passes through dense forests filled with rhododendrons and juniper. On arrival, there are chances to spot wild snow leopards on our final night in the Northern Kanchenjunga region. Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner with an overnight stay at Tea House
Day 19: Sele Le to Cheram: Today is maybe our longest and definitely one of our toughest days yet. An immediate steep uphill climb takes us to the top of Sele Le Pass – giving us aerial views of the northside of Kanchenjunga, complete with a peek at both Mount Makalu and Mount Jannu. We then have one final uphill push to reach Cheram, before we can relax and rest for the night. Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner with an overnight stay at Tea House
Day 20: Cheram to Ramche and return back to Cheram: Today we can leave our packs behind as we are going on a day hike. Give you back a break and feel light as air as we set off early in the morning and begin by passing through the Yalung Glacier. We then continue past the Simbuwa River and Lapsang Village before arriving in Ramche. We will push on just a little further to a nearby ridgeline that gives us amazing views of Mount Jannu, before returning back. Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner with overnight stay a Tea House
Day 21:Cheram to Tortong: A nice gentle trail today to Tortong, as we lose 1000m of elevation. As we descend from Cheram the trail will split into two directions. We will take the right-hand side which will lead us back to Sele Le Pass – taking in Smbuwa Khola along the way. Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner with overnight stay a Tea House
Day 22: Tortong to Yamphudin: Another long day of walking, lasting 7 hours, greets us today as we head towards the biggest village in the southern section of Kanchenjunga: Yamphuding. Depending on the time of year that you chose to trek, today’s trail can be prone to landslides and monsoon damage and so the route may vary. On arrival, you will be able to meet Sherpa, Limbu, and Rai locals. Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner with an overnight stay at Tea House.
Day 23: Yamphudin to Yangpang: From Yamphuding we descend to a small bridge that takes us from Samekham to the riverbank of Kabeli Khola. We will then pass through Mamangkhe where we are able to visit the Limbu Museum and the Cultural Centre. We then cross the Khsewa River, walk through a forest of Cardamom, pass a number of villages, and descend to Yangpang. Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner with an overnight stay at Tea House.
Day 24: Yangpang to Thorpu: We will start today by passing through terraced fields and a few villages as we take the relatively unbeaten path between Yangpang and Thorpe. As this is not the usual tourist route, enjoy the quiet empty trails, and undisturbed nature, as we make our way to Yangpang to rest up for our final day of trekking tomorrow. Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner with an overnight stay at Tea House
Day 25: Thorpu to Birtamod: Today is our final day of trekking! We will feel a real change of climate and notice a remarkable difference in the landscape as we embark on the final portion of our journey. As we trek the terrain changes into a fertile valley, and the weather will slowly become more hot and humid. On arrival, you can relax and celebrate the end of a long and successful trek! Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner with an overnight stay at Tea House
Day 26: Drive from Birtamod to Bhadrapur then Fly to Kathmandu: Today we will start by driving to Bhadrapur and then from here we will catch a short flight to Kathmandu. On arrival, you are free to spend the rest of your day enjoying the excitement of the Capital – either taking rest or exploring the city nightlife for the final night of your trip. Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, and overnight stay at a 3-star hotel
Day 27: Final Departure: It’s time to fly home! Say goodbye to Nepal and your fellow trekkers! A member of our friendly team will take you to the airport. Breakfast
- Airport/hotel pick up and drop off by private car
- At least two nights 3-star hotel in Kathmandu bed and Breakfast plan
- Meals on full board (breakfast, lunch, and dinner) in whole trekking
- Trekking map
- An experienced Government license holder guide
- Trekking porter/Sherpa who will carry your bags during the trekking
- Insurance, salary, equipment, transportation, local tax for guide and porter
- Group medical supplies (first aid kit will be available)
- All necessary paper works and national park entry permits
- Travel and rescue arrangement
- TIMS (Trekkers’ Information Management System)
- All government taxes and tourist service charge
What's not included
- Meals in Kathmandu before and after trekking, allowing US$ 15 – US$ 20 per day
- Your travel insurance ( Rescue )
- Nepal entry visa fee.
- Tips for trekking staff and driver
- Drinks (hot, cold and alcoholic)
- Personal shopping and laundry etc
- Personal trekking equipment
- Light and expedition weight thermal tops
- Sunglasses with UV protection
- Fleece jacket or pullover
- Sleeping bag rated to 0 degrees (3/4 season)
- Fleece Wind-Stopper jacket (optional)
- Head lamp (eg Petzl) spare bulbs & batteries
- Lightweight thermal gloves
- Small padlock to lock trek bag
- Underwear (4)
- Basic First Aid Kit (see First Aid Medicine below)
- Waterproof shell jacket (preferably breathable fabric)
- Plastic bags – for keeping items dry inside trek bag
- Shorts (2)
- Daypack (35-40 litres/2500-3000 cubic inches)
- Lightweight cotton long trousers/pants
- Camping mattress, eg thermarest pad
- Light and expedition weight thermal bottoms
- Water bottles (2)
- Sun hat or scarf
- Warm fleece hat or light balaclava
- Small wash towel
- T-shirts (2)
- Footwear appropriate to the trip
- Thin, lightweight (inner socks) (4)
- Waterproof shell trousers/pants (preferably breathable fabric)
Join Our Fixed Departures
There are no fixed departure dates available for this trip you can choose your own dates.
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