If time is short, fitness a concern, and you feel the need perhaps to test the waters before committing to a more arduous trek through the Himalayas, Nepal Trekking Experts may have the ideal solution for you in the shape of the classic Langtang Valley Trek. Not only does the trek offer a journey of reasonably moderate effort through a scenically dramatic alpine region well worth visiting in its own right, but it also has the added benefit of being very accessible from Kathmandu, minimizing travel and days wasted for those who want to focus their limited time on trekking, rather than onerous bus or jeep rides.
Langtang Village and the Earthquake of 2015
The Langtang Valley Trek was long a favored area for hiking and ranked only behind Everest and Annapurna in terms of popularity. The tragic 2015 earthquake had a devastating economic effect on the community, with many forced to leave, yet in the intervening years many have come back, the tea houses have been rebuilt anew, and life has slowly returned to something resembling the past, though tourism to the area has yet to approach earlier figures. Visitors choosing to make the journey will thus not only be able to avail themselves of one of Nepal’s most beautiful treks in the same manner as before but can help support the wonderful welcome and hospitable Tamang people of Langtang Valley as they attempt to rebuild their livelihoods in the wake of the earthquake.
Getting to the Trailhead
The trailhead starts at Syabrubesi and courses through glorious forests perched by the banks of the Langtang Khola. From there the trail wanders up between the broad shoulders of the looming peaks to the narrow vale of the rebuilt village of Langtang, then on and up to the valley’s alpine pastures, yak herds, and the entrancing monastery of Kyanjin Gompa and its unique Yak cheese facility. Optional climbs to Kyanjin Ri (4773m) or Cherko Ri (4984m) offer stunning panoramic views of the valley and surrounding mountains. The return journey on the opposite side of the river gives the trip an entirely different perspective, and the additional option exists to add the challenging route to the sacred lake of Gosaikunda and the high pass of Gosaikunda La (4610m).
So if you’re on a short visit and looking for a mild pace through superb scenery we would suggest you consider the Langtang Valley Trek. Not only is it an exceptionally rewarding experience, but you’ll be helping to support gentle and famously hospitable people to recover from one of the most devastating events to hit Nepal in decades.
Accommodation on the Langtang Trek
The Langtang Valley hosts a small selection of tea houses all along its less-traveled route, meaning no tents are required. This trek can be done similarly to other well-known hiking routes, such as the Annapurna Circuit Trek and the Everest Base Camp Trek. Tea houses in the Langtang Valley tend to be cozier and more interwoven with the local families and their culture. Room quality varies depending on the area and price point. The deeper into the mountains and the higher in elevation you travel, the more basic the accommodation. You can expect simple rooms, often with shared bathrooms and squat toilets, without heating, so we provide you with a clean -20°C sleeping bag. When available at more established tea houses, you may purchase a hot shower for less than a dollar (paid in local currency).
Meals on the Langtang Valley Trek
You will be eating at the tea houses where you're staying for breakfast and dinner and stopping for lunch at tea houses along the route. Considering that you are trekking into a remote region of the Himalayas, the menus are quite sizable, offering both local and Western dishes; however, the menus from village to village are rather similar. You can choose from a variety of local dishes, including Dal Bhat (rice, vegetable curry, and lentil soup with unlimited refills!), fried rice or noodles, Mo Mo (local dumplings), Thukpa (Tibetan noodle soup), spring rolls, or western dishes like pasta, pizza, and potatoes.
For breakfast, you can enjoy local chapati or Tibetan bread with curry or go for more familiar eggs, porridge, muesli, or pancakes. This trek is vegetarian and vegan-friendly, but if you have any other dietary restrictions, you can let us know, and your guide will communicate with the kitchen staff.
Your package with Nepal Trekking Experts includes dinner in Kathmandu before you leave for your trek and three meals a day (with tea or coffee) every day of the trek, including travel days. If you'd like, you can purchase extra snacks, desserts, or fancy coffees when they're available.
Telephone on the Langtang Region
Due to its relatively close proximity to Kathmandu, the Langtang Valley has quite a wide range of phone service and mobile reception. NCELL and Nepal Telecom are our two major SIM card providers in Nepal; however, Nepal Telecom is recommended for better reception in the Langtang region. You can purchase an NTC (Nepal Telecom Communications) SIM card in Kathmandu when you arrive.
Internet on the Langtang Region
Most tea houses offer wifi for their guests for a small fee, although at times it may not be reliable due to weather and other issues. You can expect to pay $4 or less (in Nepali rupees) for wifi along the Langtang Valley Trek.
Device Charging on the Langtang Region
You can expect to pay a small fee for electricity in most tea houses. A fully charged device costs less than a dollar, which you can pay in rupees. Tea houses are powered by electricity or solar power at higher elevations. Carrying a power bank may be useful during your trek in the Himalayas.
Transportation on the Langtang Trek
All transportation fees and arrangements are included in your trekking package when you book with Nepal Trekking Experts. To start the Langtang Valley Trek, you will travel via bus from Kathmandu (Gongabu Bus Park) to Syabrubesi (7/8 hrs) and start trekking the following day. Once you finish your trek, the journey back to Kathmandu will be the same in reverse. Please be aware that the buses in Nepal can be overcrowded (especially if you are traveling during festival time), not particularly tidy, and will stop in villages along the route to pick up and drop off more people. Bus rides can be part of the exciting, immersive experience of being in a foreign country, but they are not for everyone. If you would like a more comfortable alternative, we would be happy to book a private jeep for you and your group. Jeeps shave off a couple of hours of travel time, and you can stop for breaks at your leisure. Upon your request, we will book private transportation for $130 from Kathmandu to Syabrubesi and $130 from Syabrubesi to Kathmandu.
Our tailor-made packages do not include a porter, so you can make the decision based on your own needs and preferences. Although not necessary, having a porter can make a massive difference in the enjoyment of your trek. If you are new to trekking or have any concerns about the journey, then we would recommend having a porter in the Langtang region carry your bag for you. One porter carries the bags of two people (around 20kg) so that you can carry a small daypack. If you are undecided, we would be happy to discuss porters in more detail when you book your trek.
Langtang Trekking Permits
To enter the Langtang Valley, you will require two permits and must trek with a government-licensed guide. When trekking with Nepal Trekking Experts, all permit fees are included in your package, and your experienced guide will obtain the required permits on your behalf with your passport.
- The TIMS (Trekkers Information Management System) Card costs 2000 Nepali rupees and will be obtained through the Trekking Agencies only.
- Langtang National Park Entry Permit, which can be obtained at the Nepal Tourism Board or at the park entrance for 3000 Nepali rupees.
Contact our staff now and we can organize your trek to the Langtang Valley in no time.