• LANGTANG VALLEY TREK GUIDE

    Snowy mountain view with colourful prayer flags in the foreground, seen from the first Kyanjin Ri viewpoint (4300 m) on the Langtang Valley trek
  • LANGTANG VALLEY TREK

    With an impressive wall of snowy mountains behind, a trekker climbs the trail to Tsergo Ri (4965 m), one of two main day hikes from Kyanjin Gompa on the Langtang Valley trek

LANGTANG VALLEY TREK

THE ESSENTIAL GUIDE

In this guide we cover everything you need to know about the Langtang Valley Trek in Nepal. This includes a suggested itinerary, a route map, and a GPX download, as well as practical information about accommodation, costs, what to pack, independent vs. guided treks, and more. Along with this written guide, we also share ‘silent hiking’ films of the trail and a video guide to trekking the Langtang Valley. For detailed trail notes, check out our Langtang Valley Trekking Route Guide.

With lush forests and snow-capped peaks, the chance to reach nearly 5000 m without crossing a high mountain pass, and an opportunity to experience the culture of the Tibetan-speaking Tamang people, there are many things that appeal about a Langtang Valley trek. What’s more, the area is relatively close to Kathmandu, the transport options make it easily accessible, and the trek itself is not too long. Read on to discover more and start planning your own Langtang Valley trek.

*Some of the links in this post are affiliate links – if you purchase a product or service via these links, we may earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. This helps offset the cost of running this blog and keeps us travelling so that we can continue to produce great content for you. We greatly appreciate your support!*

LANGTANG VALLEY TREK OVERVIEW

    • DISTANCE | 60 – 75 km (depending on day hikes)
    • DURATION | 6 – 8 days (+ 2 days travel to/from Kathmandu)
    • START/END | Syabrubesi (accessible by public bus (8+ hours) or private jeep (6 – 7 hours) from Kathmandu)
    • PERMITS REQUIRED | Langtang National Park Fee 3000 NPR (payable at checkpoint near start of trek), TIMS NOT Required
    • TREKKING SEASON | Best Seasons: Mid-March to April, October to Mid-November; Shoulder Seasons: Early-March, May, September, Mid-November to December; Avoid: June to August, January to February
    • TREK DIFFICULTY | Moderate
    • ELEVATION GAIN/LOSS | +/- 3420 metres (to Kyanjin Gompa only), +/- 5300 metres (including day hikes)
    • MAX ALTITUDE | 3865 m at Kyanjin Gompa, 4965 m if trekking to Tsergo Ri
    • GUIDE MANDATORY | Debatable: From April 1st 2023, trekking guides became mandatory for all foreign trekkers in Nepal, however the rule isn’t necessarily being enforced on the ground
    • ACCOMMODATION | Teahouses/Guesthouses in villages along the trail
    • TREK COST | $24 – 100 USD per person, per day (budget independent trekker to fully inclusive package)
    • ADD-ON TREKS | Gosainkunda, Tamang Heritage Trail, climbing Yala Peak
    • RECOMMENDED TREKKING AGENCY | Himalayan Masters, Quote HOGG5 for 5% discount

LANGTANG VALLEY TREK OVERVIEW

DISTANCE
60 -75 km

DURATION
6 – 8 days (+ 2 days travel to/from Kathmandu)

START/END
Syabrubesi (accessible by public bus (8+ hours) or private jeep (6 – 7 hours) from Kathmandu)

PERMITS REQUIRED
Langtang National Park Fee 3000 NPR (payable at checkpoint near start of trek), TIMS NOT Required

TREKKING SEASON
Best Seasons
Mid-March to April
October to Mid-November
Shoulder Seasons
Early-March, May, September
Mid-November to December
Avoid
June to August
January to February

TREK DIFFICULTY
Moderate

ELEVATION GAIN/LOSS
+/- 3420 metres
(to Kyanjin Gompa only)
+/- 5300 metres
(including day hikes)

MAX ALTITUDE
3880 m at Kyanjin Gompa
4965 m if trekking to Tsergo Ri

GUIDE MANDATORY
Debatable: From April 1st 2023, trekking guides became mandatory for all foreign trekkers in Nepal, however the rule isn’t necessarily being enforced on the ground

ACCOMMODATION
Teahouses/Guesthouses in villages along the trail

TREK COST
$24 – 100 USD per person, per day (budget independent trekker to fully inclusive package)

ADD-ON TREKS
Gosainkunda, Tamang Heritage Trail, climbing Yala Peak

OUR RECOMMENDED TREKKING AGENCY
Himalayan Masters, Quote HOGG5 for 5% discount


LANGTANG VALLEY FILM & VIDEO GUIDE

Our ambient ‘silent hiking’ style films are perfect for getting a sense of the Langtang Valley trek. Our indepth video guide works well as a companion piece to this written guide and includes much more discussion of our own experience on the trek.





Watch the behind the scenes version of our Langtang Valley trek on Instagram stories

Watch the behind the scenes
version of our
Langtang Valley
trek
on Instagram stories 

LANGTANG VALLEY TREK MAP & GPX DOWNLOAD

LANGTANG VALLEY TREK //

MAP & GPX DOWNLOAD

We have created a detailed Langtang Valley trekking map to accompany this guide. The trekking route between Syabrubesi and Kyanjin Gompa, the day hiking routes to Kyanjin Ri and Tsergo Ri, and the stats for each section are all marked on the map. Villages and tea shops are also marked, as well as key sights and practical info such as checkpoints. Guesthouses as per our own trek itinerary are marked, including prices and services, phone numbers, and a copy of the menu. Photos are included with almost every pin. You can use the digital map online, or download it for offline use with a mapping app such as Organic Maps, Maps.me or Gaia GPS. This is very helpful for navigation assistance on the trail and allows you to quickly pinpoint key places and services along the way and calculate distance and elevation differences between destinations. Note that while we’ve tried to be as accurate as possible when recording and mapping the route, changes on the ground are inevitable, and this map should not be solely relied upon for navigation. 

LANGTANG VALLEY TREK ELEVATION PROFILE

LANGTANG VALLEY TREK //

ELEVATION PROFILE

The image below shows the elevation profile of our own route for the Langtang Valley trek, going via Sherpagaon on the way up, including the day hikes to Kyanjin Ri (4586 m) and Tsergo Ri (4965 m), and ending at the Gosainkunda turn-off on the way down.  Elevation is displayed in metres and distance in kilometres.

Langtang Valley Trek elevation profile

3D ROUTE MAP

Watch our 3D relief map video of the route to visualise the geography of the Langtang Valley and get a sense of the trek.


LANGTANG VALLEY TREK ITINERARY

LANGTANG VALLEY TREK //

ITINERARY

In the table below, we have outlined what we feel is an ideal Langtang Valley trek itinerary. This is an 8 day trek starting and ending in Syabrubesi, plus 2 days travel to and from Kathmandu.

Many Langtang Valley trek itineraries offered by trekking agencies, or outlined in other blog posts online, suggest a 6 day trek plus 2 travel days. Although that is certainly possible, when you consider factors like altitude and acclimatisation, day hikes, and alternative routes, we feel an 8 day trekking itinerary is better and will outline the reasons for this below.

The times given for each day are an average and don’t include time for lunch or other significant stops, such as tea/coffee breaks. You may of course be faster or slower than these times, depending on a variety of factors such as your pace, desire to take photos, and interest in things along the way.

If viewing on a mobile device or tablet, scroll to the right to see the full table or flip your screen to landscape mode.

DAYROUTEDISTANCE & TIME

ELEVATION GAINELEVATION LOSSSLEEP ALTITUDE
DAY 1Drive KATHMANDU → SYABRUBESI5.5+ hours1500 m
DAY 2 (Option 1)SYABRUBESI → SHERPAGAON9.8 km / 6.5 hours
1637 m
497 m2600 m
DAY 2 (Option 2)SYABRUBESI → RIMCHE (via Bamboo)10.2 km / 7 hours1484 m471 m2490 m
DAY 3* (Option 1)SHERPAGAON → THANGSHYAP11.4 km / 6.5 hours
1343 m
761 m3190 m
DAY 3* (Option 2)RIMCHE → THANGSHYAP8.7 km / 5 hours1049 m349 m3190 m
DAY 4THANGSHYAP → LANGTANG4 km / 1.5 hours402 m142 m3450 m
DAY 5LANGTANG → KYANJIN GOMPA6.5 km / 3 hours495 m86 m3865 m
DAY 6KYANJIN RI DAY HIKE
(4586 m)
4.5 km / 4.5 hours730 m730 m3865 m
DAY 7TSERGO RI DAY HIKE
(4965 m)
9.3 km / 8 hours1154 m1154 m3865 m
DAY 8**KYANJIN GOMPA → LAMA HOTEL18.2 km / 5.5 hours453 m1833 m2485 m
DAY 9LAMA HOTEL → SYABRUBESI (via Bamboo)10.6 km / 5.5 hours524 m1558 m1500 m
DAY 10Drive SYABRUBESI → KATHMANDU1400 m

*You could stop earlier at Ghodatabela (~ 3000 m) although the accommodation is more basic, or continue to Langtang if you are already acclimatised (which will save you a day)

**You could continue 30 minutes to Rimche for better views

ALTITUDE AND ACCLIMATISATION

Most Langtang Valley trek itineraries suggest trekking from Syabrubesi to Lama Hotel on Day 1 (1500 m to 2485 m), from Lama Hotel to Langtang or Mundu on Day 2 (2485 m to 3450 m), and then from Langtang or Mundu to Kyanjin Gompa on Day 3 (3450 m to 3865 m). From Kyanjin Gompa, two of the absolute highlights of the Langtang Valley trek are the day hikes to Kyanjin Ri (4586 m) and Tsergo Ri (4965 m) on Days 4 and 5.

  If you are already acclimatised (ie. you have been at altitudes of 3500 m + within the previous week), then we don’t see a problem with this itinerary. However, if you are not yet acclimatised, we feel the speed of ascent to 3500 m and above puts hikers at an unnecessary risk of experiencing adverse reactions to altitude.

A view of Langtang village from above, jagged mountains rising behind

Ascending too quickly to Langtang village (3450 m) and above can put trekkers at risk of experiencing symptoms of altitude sickness



A view of Langtang village from above, jagged mountains rising behind

Ascending too quickly to Langtang village (3450 m)
and above can put trekkers at risk of experiencing
symptoms of altitude sickness



Everybody reacts to altitude differently. There’s every chance that you may feel fine by the time you reach Langtang or Kyanjin Gompa, but there’s also a chance that you may be suffering from headaches, nausea, fatigue, loss of appetite, or other symptoms of AMS (Acute Mountain Sickness) because the speed of ascent has been too fast for your body to properly acclimatise. At best, if your symptoms are relatively mild, you may feel pretty miserable and too unwell to tackle the day hikes to Kyanjin Ri and/or Tsergo Ri, missing out on some of the best views and experiences on the Langtang Valley trek. And at worst, you could put yourself at risk of developing HAPE or HACE, both life-threatening conditions.

Therefore, we feel that it is more sensible to follow medical advice and aim to sleep no more than 300 – 500 metres higher than the previous day when at altitudes of 2500 m and above. As such, our suggested itinerary includes a night at Thangshyap (3190 m) on Day 2, before ascending to Langtang at 3450 m on Day 3, and finally Kyangjin Gompa at 3865 m on Day 4. This is the itinerary we followed and I (Kim) suffered almost no symptoms of AMS during the trek, having suffered from AMS at similar altitudes in the past when ascending more rapidly.

DAY HIKES TO KYANJIN RI AND TSERGO RI

Many Langtang Valley trek itineraries include a 2 night stay at Kyanjin Gompa, however we would recommend staying 3 nights instead. This gives you plenty of time to rest and further acclimatise on the day you arrive at Kyanjin Gompa, then do the day hike to Kyanjin Ri the following morning, and the day hike to Tsergo Ri the morning after that.

These two day hikes are absolute highlights of the trek. By planning morning ascents you’ll give yourself the best possibility of clear views, and by spreading them out over two days you will be less rushed and better acclimatised.

With an impressive wall of snowy mountains behind, a trekker climbs the trail to Tsergo Ri (4965 m), one of two main day hikes from Kyanjin Gompa on the Langtang Valley trek

Climbing Tsergo Ri in the morning gives you the best chance of having clear mountain views



With an impressive wall of snowy mountains behind, a trekker climbs the trail to Tsergo Ri (4965 m), one of two main day hikes from Kyanjin Gompa on the Langtang Valley trek

Climbing Tsergo Ri in the morning gives you
the best chance of having clear mountain views



ALTERNATIVE ROUTES ON THE WAY UP & DOWN THE LANGTANG VALLEY

The Langtang Valley trek is largely an up and down the valley route, following the same trail from Syabrubesi to Kyanjin Gompa and back again. Between Rimche and Kyanjin Gompa there is no way to avoid this, however between Syabrubesi and Rimche there is an option to take an alternative route on the way up and/or down, which we think is far more interesting than simply repeating the same trail.

Most Langtang Valley trek itineraries suggest hiking from Syabrubesi to Lama Hotel on Day 1, and repeating this route in reverse on Day 6. The route follows the Langtang Khola (River), going via Bamboo. However, for a change of scenery and chance to visit more local villages in the region, we’d suggest taking an alternative route from Syabrubesi to Sherpagaon on Day 1.

Instead of climbing gradually up the valley and ending the day with a steep climb to Rimche or Lama Hotel, you’ll start the day with a steep climb up through forest to Khangjim and Surka. From here you’ll follow a gently undulating trail for the rest of the day, working your way around the hillside through attractive forest sections and across open areas with fantastic views. Sherpagaon itself is a lovely village with a mix of guesthouses and local homes, and the views from here are great. The following morning it takes less than 1.5 hours to trek to Rimche (again with fantastic views), where you’ll rejoin the classic Langtang Valley trekking route.

The village of Sherpagaon, perched on a steeply sloping hillside high above the Langtang Valley floor

High above the Langtang Valley floor, Sherpagaon (2563 m) has impressive views of the surrounding mountains



The village of Sherpagaon, perched on a steeply sloping hillside high above the Langtang Valley floor

Sherpagaon (2563 m) has impressive views of
the surrounding mountains from its position
high above the Langtang Valley floor



If for whatever reason you would prefer not to trek the alternative route to Sherpagaon on Day 1, we would at least suggest overnighting at Rimche instead of Lama Hotel. The views from Rimche are much better than at Lama Hotel (a riverside location tucked into a narrow valley), plus it’s more interesting to stay at different places on the way up and down the valley.

If combining the Langtang Valley trek with the Tamang Heritage Trail, note that you’ll trek via Sherpagaon anyway.

OUR RECOMMENDED TREKKING AGENCY

We partnered with Himalayan Masters for our Langtang Valley, Gosainkunda, and Everest Three Passes treks, and found them to be professional and committed to a high level of service

To enquire about booking your own trek, get in touch via email at info@himalayan-masters.com and mention the code HOGG5 to get a 5% discount off the cost of your trip


LANGTANG VALLEY TREKKING SEASON

LANGTANG VALLEY TREK //

TREKKING SEASON

Like many treks in Nepal, the peak seasons for trekking in the Langtang Valley are Mid-March to April and October to Mid-November. While nothing is guaranteed, as weather patterns are becoming increasingly unpredictable in Nepal and across the world, these months typically offer the best chance of clear skies mixed with warmer temperatures. In autumn, expect less wind and higher temperatures, while in late March and April, blooming rhododendrons and other spring flowers are a beautiful sight at lower elevations.

Jagged, snow-covered mountain peaks at sunrise, seen from a guesthouse rooftop at Kyanjin Gompa on the Langtang Valley trek

Clear, sunrise mountain views in late March from the rooftop terrace of the Holyland Guesthouse in Kyanjin Gompa (3865 m)



Jagged, snow-covered mountain peaks at sunrise, seen from a guesthouse rooftop at Kyanjin Gompa on the Langtang Valley trek

Clear, sunrise mountain views in late March
from the rooftop terrace of the Holyland
Guesthouse in Kyanjin Gompa (3865 m)



The shoulder seasons of Early-March and Mid-November to December can be quieter and colder, typically with clear weather, especially in December. In late May and early September there is a higher chance of early or lingering monsoon rains and cloudy skies.

The summer months of June, July, and August coincide with the monsoon season. Trekking during this period means lots of walking in rain, poor visibility with clouds obscuring the surrounding mountains, muddy trails, and leeches. The landscape is lush and green though, and some rare mushrooms and colourful wildflowers can be spotted on the hillsides. Many guesthouses close during this time, although there is usually at least one open in each settlement.

The winter months of January and February are considered too cold by most to trek, and as is the case during the summer monsoon, many guesthouses close for these two months. If you don’t mind cold mornings and evenings, December is a good option for clear skies and sunny days.

HOW TO GET TO/FROM THE LANGTANG VALLEY TREK TRAILHEAD

LANGTANG VALLEY TREK //

HOW TO GET TO AND FROM THE TRAILHEAD

Syabrubesi is the trailhead for the Langtang Valley trek, a small town approximately 115 km north of Kathmandu. You can get there by public bus or private jeep and the journey takes around 5.5 – 9 hours depending on your mode of transport. The road is narrow and twisting at points with occasional steep drop-offs, and includes some bumpy sections on rough non-tarmac roads.

BUS FROM KATHMANDU TO SYABRUBESI

Buses from Kathmandu to Syabrubesi depart from Machhapokhari (near the New Bus Park / Gongabu Bus Park) between 6am – 8am every day. They depart from Syabrubesi to Kathmandu between approximately 6am – 7am. Tickets cost 1000 NPR per person, one way. The journey takes around 8 – 9 hours, although it’s possible it can take longer depending on road conditions that day. In Kathmandu, you can arrive early and purchase a ticket on the same day, or head to the bus stop the day before to buy your ticket. In Syabrubesi, you can ask your guesthouse owner to book your seat for the following morning.

A public bus stopped in a town at lunch time, a bus which many trekkers use to get from Kathmandu to Syabrubesi to start the Langtang Valley trek

A typical bus plying the route between Kathmandu and Syabrubesi



A public bus stopped in a town at lunch time, a bus which many trekkers use to get from Kathmandu to Syabrubesi to start the Langtang Valley trek

A typical bus plying the route between
Kathmandu and Syabrubesi



The bus will stop a couple of times during the journey for food and a toilet break. It’s a pretty uncomfortable trip, with no air conditioning, dust and fumes blowing in the windows, and often music blasting through the speakers for hours on end. Drivers can tear along the road at high speed, which can be potentially dangerous and a little scary.

You can get a taxi between Thamel (or elsewhere in Kathmandu) and Machhapokhari for about 500 NPR. If you hail a taxi on the street, be sure to agree the price with your taxi driver at the start. You can also use a taxi app such as Pathao (iOS/Android).

PRIVATE JEEP FROM KATHMANDU TO SYABRUBESI

A private jeep from Kathmandu to Syabrubesi costs approximately $170 one way. It can seat up to 7 people plus a guide and driver (with your bags strapped to the roof). The price can be shared between all passengers. The route is the same as by bus, but the journey time is usually significantly less at around 5.5 – 7 hours, depending on the road conditions that day. You will likely stop for lunch and a toilet break along the way, and you have more flexibility to stop for photos, etc, whenever you like.

A private tourist jeep parked at the roadside, carrying trekkers from Kathmandu to Syabrubesi for the Langtang Valley trek

A private tourist jeep enroute to Syabrubesi



If you are organising your Langtang Valley trek via a trekking agency, they will be able to organise a private jeep for you. Otherwise, you can ask at your hotel or at local travel agencies. A private jeep will pick you up at your accommodation, offering door-to-door service.

It is much more comfortable to travel by private jeep than bus, and safer too.

SEE MORE FROM NEPAL

Featured image for the Everest Base Camp trek guide, featuring a trekker walking on a rocky trail with mountain peaks in the distance
With Ama Dablam as a backdrop, a trekker and guide stop to enjoy the views while doing the Nangkartshang acclimatisation hike on the Everest Three Passes trek
A hiker and guide cross a flat, rocky section before Kongma La on the Everest Three Passes trek, with the snowy ridgeline to the east visible behind
A trekker and guide climbing the snow covered slope towards Laurebina Pass (4650 m), with the blue surface of Gosainkunda shining in the morning sun below
Snow covered guesthouses reflected in the bright blue waters of Gosainkunda
Trekkers enjoying mountain views and a well earned rest atop Kyanjin Ri (4586 m) in the Langtang Valley
Snowy mountain view with colourful prayer flags in the foreground, seen from the first Kyanjin Ri viewpoint (4300 m) on the Langtang Valley trek
Featured image for 'What to Pack for Trekking in Nepal', featuring trekkers, guides and porters crossing a suspension bridge on the Everest Base Camp route
A narrow trekking trail in Upper Mustang stretching off into the distance amidst some bizarre rock formations, with the snowy peak of Dhaulagiri in the background
Trekkers on a trail approaching a round orange rock formation with a plateau stretched out into the distance in Upper Mustang
Sunrise hitting the Annapurna Mountains in Nepal
Trekkers look out while descending from the Larke Pass on the Manaslu Circuit Trek
Featured image for the Everest Base Camp trek guide, featuring a trekker walking on a rocky trail with mountain peaks in the distance
With Ama Dablam as a backdrop, a trekker and guide stop to enjoy the views while doing the Nangkartshang acclimatisation hike on the Everest Three Passes trek
A hiker and guide cross a flat, rocky section before Kongma La on the Everest Three Passes trek, with the snowy ridgeline to the east visible behind
A trekker and guide climbing the snow covered slope towards Laurebina Pass (4650 m), with the blue surface of Gosainkunda shining in the morning sun below
Snow covered guesthouses reflected in the bright blue waters of Gosainkunda
Trekkers enjoying mountain views and a well earned rest atop Kyanjin Ri (4586 m) in the Langtang Valley
Snowy mountain view with colourful prayer flags in the foreground, seen from the first Kyanjin Ri viewpoint (4300 m) on the Langtang Valley trek
Featured image for 'What to Pack for Trekking in Nepal', featuring trekkers, guides and porters crossing a suspension bridge on the Everest Base Camp route
A narrow trekking trail in Upper Mustang stretching off into the distance amidst some bizarre rock formations, with the snowy peak of Dhaulagiri in the background
Trekkers on a trail approaching a round orange rock formation with a plateau stretched out into the distance in Upper Mustang
Sunrise hitting the Annapurna Mountains in Nepal
Trekkers look out while descending from the Larke Pass on the Manaslu Circuit Trek

LANGTANG VALLEY TREK PERMITS AND FEES

LANGTANG VALLEY TREK //

TREKKING PERMITS & FEES

To trek in the Langtang Valley you will need to pay the Langtang National Park entrance fee, which is 3000 NPR (1500 NPR for SAARC nationals, 100 NPR for Nepalis). You can pay it on the way to Syabrubesi, at the NP entrance shortly before Dhunche, where all public and private transport have to make a stop. You need your passport and the fee in cash, in Nepalese rupees (NPR). Be sure to hold onto your receipt as you need to show it at checkpoints along the route.

Formerly, getting a TIMS card was also necessary, but this hasn’t been the case for a couple of years and when we trekked in March 2023, it was not required. Whether this situation will continue, we can’t say, but since 1 April 2023 a TIMS (Trekkers’ Information Management System) card can only be obtained by a representative of a registered trekking agency. 

Your bag will be searched at the same checkpoint where your NP permit is issued, and the police will specifically ask if you have a drone with you. These are not permitted, unless you have the relevant permission and documents proving it.

TREKKING THE LANGTANG VALLEY INDEPENDENTLY

LANGTANG VALLEY TREK //

TREKKING INDEPENDENTLY

The Langtang Valley is not a restricted area, and as such, a guide (historically) has not been mandatory. However, the Nepal Tourism Board announced on March 9 2023 that as of April 1 2023, all international trekkers in Nepal are required to hire a licenced trekking guide and obtain the TIMS card through an authorised trekking agency registered with the government of Nepal. This abrupt announcement led to much confusion and debate about where such a rule applies, and whether it is being enforced on the ground.

A common interpretation of the rule is that trekking routes where TIMS is not required are exempt from the mandatory guide rule. The Langtang Valley falls under this category (along with treks in the Khumbu region, such as Everest Base Camp or Everest Three Passes).

From our own experience trekking in Nepal in March and April 2023, we can confirm that independent trekkers are still trekking in the Langtang Valley without guides. They are passing through police and national park checkpoints without any problems. However, the situation can of course change, so it’s best to seek out on-the-trail updates from independent trekkers on active Facebook groups, forums, etc.

PROS AND CONS OF INDEPENDENT TREKKING

Assuming the situation stays the same, and hikers continue to be able to trek independently in the Langtang Valley, here are a few thoughts on the pros and cons of independent trekking here.

PROS

This is the cheapest way to trek in the Langtang Valley. You won’t have to pay for anything extra beyond your daily food and accommodation costs, permit fee, and transport to/from the trailhead.

You have complete freedom and flexibility. You can choose how long to trek for each day, what route to take and where to stay. If you like somewhere, you can choose to stay an extra day without having to consult anyone else or consider their needs.

It is easier to enjoy a bit of ‘alone time’ on the trail. If you are trekking with a guide or group it can be harder or more awkward to branch out and enjoy walking alone with your thoughts.

You’ll likely have more interaction with locals. If you are trekking with a guide it is common practice for them to deal with everything at your guesthouse and act as a go-between. It’s normal for your guide to take your order, bring out your food, and settle up the bill on your behalf, which means you may have little interaction with the owner or staff yourself. But, you’ll be doing all that by yourself if you trek independently.

CONS

With freedom and flexibility comes more responsibility and the need to do more research, preparation and daily planning. You will need to spend time organising things both on and off the trail. You will need to sort out all the logistics like your permit, transport, and accommodation by yourself, and be confident in your route planning and navigation. 

You are more vulnerable in an emergency situation or if you get sick. This is especially true if you are trekking solo. You should prepare as best you can with a comprehensive medical kit, emergency contact numbers at the ready, and ideally an emergency communication device like the InReach Explorer

In peak trekking season you may find it harder to get a room. Many guesthouses prefer bigger groups with organised companies and will give preference to them over independent solo trekkers or those in small groups. Guides with existing local contacts often call ahead to book rooms, something which isn’t as easy for independent trekkers with no personal contacts. 

You miss out on all the insights a knowledgeable, English speaking guide can offer. Your understanding of the region, and Nepal in general, is likely to be much broader after spending a week or more in the company of a Nepali guide rather than going it alone.


PROS

This is the cheapest way to trek in the Langtang Valley. You won’t have to pay for anything extra beyond your daily food and accommodation costs, permit fee, and transport to/from the trailhead. 

You have complete freedom and flexibility. You can choose how long to trek for each day, what route to take and where to stay. If you like somewhere, you can choose to stay an extra day without having to consult anyone else or consider their needs. 

It is easier to enjoy a bit of ‘alone time’ on the trail. If you are trekking with a guide or group it can be harder or more awkward to branch out and enjoy walking alone with your thoughts. 

You’ll likely have more interaction with locals. If you are trekking with a guide it is common practice for them to deal with everything at your guesthouse and act as a go-between. It’s normal for your guide to take your order, bring out your food, and settle up the bill on your behalf, which means you may have little interaction with the owner or staff yourself. But, you’ll be doing all that by yourself if you trek independently.

CONS

With freedom and flexibility comes more responsibility and the need to do more research, preparation and daily planning. You will need to spend time organising things both on and off the trail. You will need to sort out all the logistics like your permit, transport, and accommodation by yourself, and be confident in your route planning and navigation. 

You are more vulnerable in an emergency situation or if you get sick. This is especially true if you are trekking solo. You should prepare as best you can with a comprehensive medical kit, emergency contact numbers at the ready, and ideally an emergency communication device like the InReach Explorer

In peak trekking season you may find it harder to get a room. Many guesthouses prefer bigger groups with organised companies and will give preference to them over independent solo trekkers or those in small groups. Guides with existing local contacts often call ahead to book rooms, something which isn’t as easy for independent trekkers with no personal contacts. 

You miss out on all the insights a knowledgeable, English speaking guide can offer. Your understanding of the region, and Nepal in general, is likely to be much broader after spending a week or more in the company of a Nepali guide rather than going it alone.


TREKKING THE LANGTANG VALLEY WITH A GUIDE (AND PORTER)

LANGTANG VALLEY TREK //

TREKKING WITH A GUIDE (AND PORTER)

Many people choose to trek the Langtang Valley with a guide, and often with a porter too. Whether you’re an inexperienced or seasoned trekker, this is a great option. Not only can an experienced guide be invaluable when it comes to your safety, a guide can also enrich your experience on the trail, giving you the opportunity to learn much more about the history, culture, and geography of the land. Hiring a porter to carry your bag will put less strain on your body, making your trek much easier and perhaps allowing you to better enjoy the surroundings. Hiring a guide and/or porter also provides jobs and supports the trekking tourism economy.

If you are trekking the Langtang Valley with a guide you will usually meet them in Kathmandu prior to your trek, travel to the trailhead together, and then return to Kathmandu together at the end. If you’re trekking with a porter, they may also travel with you from Kathmandu, or you may meet them locally at the start of the trek.

A guide and trekker walking alongside a large mani wall on the Langtang Valley trek

A guide can help with many practical things and also provide insight into local culture and customs



A guide and trekker walking alongside a large mani wall on the Langtang Valley trek

A guide can help with many practical things, but
also provide insight into local culture and customs



During your trek a guide will stick with you on the trail, suggest the best spots to stop for lunch, and take you to their recommended overnight accommodation. At busy times, they may call ahead and pre-book a room for you. They will act as your go-between at each guesthouse, arranging your room, taking your food orders, and settling the bill. It’s normal for a guide to run through the following day’s itinerary each evening, giving you an overview of the trail, trekking time, and any other relevant information. Your guide will always be around at your guesthouse, but they won’t stick by you constantly. You will have plenty of freedom to hang out in your room or the dining room, read your book, chat with other guests, play cards, etc. Guides sleep and eat in the same guesthouse as you, always in a separate room.

Porters often trek at their own pace, meaning you won’t always be with them on the trail. It’s common for you to pack your porter bag before breakfast and have it ready for them, and for your bag to already be in your room when you arrive at your guesthouse for the evening. In the Langtang Valley, porters will sleep and eat at the same guesthouse as you, again in a separate room.

HOW TO ORGANISE A LANGTANG VALLEY TREKKING GUIDE (AND PORTER)

The easiest way to arrange a trekking guide is via a trekking agency. You can book an inclusive Langtang Valley trekking package which covers your transport, permit, guide (and porter), accommodation costs, and three meals a day. Alternatively, you can pay for a guide (and porter) only, and then pay-as-you-go for your accommodation, food, transport, and permit.

Choosing a trekking agency is often the trickiest part as there are thousands of registered agencies in Nepal and the quality of service can vary greatly between them. Many trekkers will choose a guide or agency based on a trusted recommendation from a friend or fellow trekker, and this is a good approach. An alternative option is to visit a number of trekking agencies in person when you arrive in Thamel (Kathmandu) to get a feel for a company that you like, or to contact agencies online in advance.

OUR RECOMMENDED TREKKING AGENCY

 Having trekked with three different agencies and three different guides on three visits to Nepal, our best experience has been with Himalayan Masters. We partnered with them for our Langtang Gosainkunda and Everest Three Passes treks, and found them to be professional, committed to a high level of service, and competitively priced.

We really appreciate the fact that Sandip, the agency owner, is super flexible when it comes to itinerary amendments that don’t just follow the norm (eg. including Sherpagaon and Thangshyap). He’s also a problem solver and what we’d call a real ‘go-getter’, a trait that’s highly valuable to his clients, whether he’s retrieving a swallowed bank card from a Thamel ATM in record time or fixing logistical issues when things go wrong last minute at 2am (both real life examples experienced by us or fellow Himalayan Masters clients we met on the trail!).

We’d also highly recommend our Himalayan Masters guide, Govinda Rai, who we spent over a month trekking with in Nepal. He is very professional, taking care of everything you would expect from a guide, but also tailoring his suggestions and advice specifically to his clients, resulting in a more enjoyable trekking experience overall. We quickly came to trust his choices for lunch stops and accommodation as we felt they were always among the best options available. His knowledge of the trail was excellent, and his advice on trekking times for each day (based on our own pace) was spot-on, making it easier for us to plan our itinerary and make on-the-go changes as we saw fit. And on a personal level, we found Govinda to be easy-going, friendly, and an all-round great person to spend time with.

Govinda Rai, a trekking guide for Himalayan Masters, laughing and smiling in front of colourful prayer flags at the top of Kyanjin Ri (4856 m) on the Langtang Valley trek

Govinda, our Himalayan Masters guide, enjoying a masala tea break at Kyanjin Ri (4586 m)



Govinda Rai, a trekking guide for Himalayan Masters, laughing and smiling in front of colourful prayer flags at the top of Kyanjin Ri (4856 m) on the Langtang Valley trek

Govinda, our Himalayan Masters guide,
enjoying a masala tea break
at Kyanjin Ri (4586 m)



We also met a number of other Himalayan Masters guides while out on the trail, including Dipak who we chatted with lots, as our Langtang Valley trek itinerary coincided for three nights at the same guesthouses. From our interactions with Dipak, and positive feedback shared over dining room chats with his two trekking clients, we’re confident that Himalayan Masters are working with great guides across the board.

To discuss your Langtang Valley trek, get in touch with Himalayan Masters at info@himalayan-masters.com, and you’ll get a 5% discount off your trip cost by using our code HOGG5.

CHALLENGE YOURSELF ON THE EVEREST THREE PASSES TREK

ACCOMMODATION ON THE LANGTANG VALLEY TREK

LANGTANG VALLEY TREK //

ACCOMMODATION

Accommodation on the Langtang Valley trek is in the form of guesthouses, also known as teahouses or lodges. These can be found regularly along the trail in local villages (Langtang/Kyanjin Gompa), in guesthouse only settlements (Lama Hotel/Bamboo), and occasionally as stand alone guesthouses such as Riverside (at Gumnachok). In general, the standard of accommodation in the Langtang Valley is quite high, as many of the guesthouses have been newly built following the devastating earthquake of 2015. The main exception is Lama Hotel, where all the guesthouses are old and the facilities are more basic. The guesthouses at Rimche, Gumnachok, and Ghodatabela are also more basic.

Snowy mountains rise behind the colourful multi-storey guesthouses of Kyanjin Gompa, the main destination point on the Langtang Valley trek

There are many guesthouses at Kyanjin Gompa



Snowy mountains rise behind the colourful multi-storey guesthouses of Kyanjin Gompa, the main destination point on the Langtang Valley trek

There are many guesthouses at Kyanjin Gompa



Guesthouses provide both accommodation and meals, and you are expected to eat dinner and breakfast at the guesthouse you sleep at. Lunch is usually at a different guesthouse along the trail, unless you arrive early at your destination for the day.

ROOMS

Rooms are basic, but comfortable. They usually have two single beds, although some places will have rooms sleeping three, or just one. Beds always have a sheet-covered mattress, a pillow with a pillowcase, and a blanket. We have seen plenty of bedding hanging out to dry which would suggest sheets, pillowcases, and blankets do get washed, however there is no guarantee that they will be freshly laundered for each guest. Personally, we always trek with our own sleeping bag and silk liner, using the blanket over our sleeping bag for extra warmth at higher altitudes.

There is always a light in the room, powered by mains electricity or solar. Often there is a small table, some hooks on the wall, and a bin, and there is almost always a window with curtains. Some guesthouses will have charging sockets in the room, but this is not always the case. There is no heating in guesthouse rooms, only ever in the main dining room.

A bedroom at the Holyland Guesthouse, at Kyanjin Gompa on the Langtang Valley trek

A better-than-average room in the Langtang Valley,
this one at the Holyland Guesthouse, Kyanjin Gompa



A bedroom at the Holyland Guesthouse, at Kyanjin Gompa on the Langtang Valley trek

A better-than-average room in the Langtang Valley,
this one at the Holyland Guesthouse, Kyanjin Gompa



TOILETS AND SHOWERS

There are often rooms with attached bathrooms (ensuite) available, but shared bathrooms are also common. If you have an attached bathroom this will usually have a toilet, sink (not always), and shower. Shared bathroom facilities usually consist of separate toilets and shower rooms, with a sink outside, although sometimes there is no dedicated sink and you’ll need to wash your hands/brush your teeth at an outdoor tap.

Toilets may be sit-down or squat style. Toilet paper is never provided, so you’ll need to pack your own and buy more as you go. Do not flush toilet paper down the toilet, always put it in the bin next to the toilet (this may be an old tin can, a cardboard box, a plastic container, or such like.) Sit-down toilets will likely have an automatic flush, although at higher altitudes in cold weather, the pipes can freeze and you may need to flush the toilet using a bucket of water. Squat toilets never have an automatic flush; you always need to flush using the scoop and bucket of water provided.

Showers are generally solar heated, although sometimes a gas shower is available (usually for a fee). If neither are available, guesthouses can provide a bucket of hot water for a fee, which you can use to wash.

DINING ROOM

Every guesthouse has a dining room where you can eat your meals, drink tea, and hang out. There are usually tables and fixed benches around the perimeter of the room, with plenty of movable chairs too. Expect to see a display cabinet of snacks and sundries for sale (eg. chocolate bars, biscuits, Pringles, toilet paper, soft drinks), and often a Buddhist prayer altar, too. The dining room is the only room with a stove, usually lit in the late afternoon/early evening as the sun goes down and it starts to get cold, making it nice and cosy.

A traditional style, typical dining room with wooden tables, plastic chairs, a central heating stove, and sunny valley views, at the Ganesh View Hotel in Rimche on the Langtang Valley trek

A traditional and typical teahouse/guesthouse dining room,
complete with stove, this one at the Ganesh View Hotel, Rimche



A traditional style, typical dining room with wooden tables, plastic chairs, a central heating stove, and sunny valley views, at the Ganesh View Hotel in Rimche on the Langtang Valley trek

A typical, traditional teahouse/guesthouse
dining room, complete with stove, this one
at the Ganesh View Hotel, Rimche



The kitchen is usually pretty cosy too, as most food is cooked over a wood fire stove. In smaller guesthouses, or when it’s not too busy, you might be invited to sit in the kitchen to stay warm (often at breakfast when the dining room is still cold).

COME JOIN US ON INSTAGRAM

FOOD ON THE LANGTANG VALLEY TREK

LANGTANG VALLEY TREK //

FOOD AND DRINKS

Every guesthouse serves meals and you are expected to eat dinner and breakfast at the guesthouse you are sleeping at, otherwise the cost of the room will be much higher. There are also a few bakeries, coffee shops, and tea shops along the route where you can pop in for treats.

Every guesthouse has a menu, and the options for breakfast, lunch, and dinner at each are almost identical. Prices tend to increase the higher you go as food and fuel needs to be transported further via porters or pack mules, resulting in additional costs.

LANGTANG VALLEY SAMPLE MENU

Click into the slider to see a typical example of a menu in the Langtang Valley. This menu is from Summit Guesthouse in Thangshyap (3190 m) and the prices are similar to those in both Langtang (3450 m) and Kyanjin Gompa (3865 m).

  • Langtang Valley Trek sample food and drink menu, showing typical prices and items available as standard
  • Langtang Valley Trek sample food and drink menu, showing typical prices and items available as standard
  • Langtang Valley Trek sample food and drink menu, showing typical prices and items available as standard
  • Langtang Valley Trek sample food and drink menu, showing typical prices and items available as standard

BREAKFAST

Breakfast dishes include porridge, muesli, eggs, Tibetan bread (a kind of fried dough), chapati (flat, unleavened bread), and pancakes. Honey, jam, peanut butter, apples, chocolate sauce, and yak cheese are common accompaniments on offer.

Breakfast options are generally priced between 300 – 600 NPR (approx $2 – $5 USD), depending on location and item.

LUNCH AND DINNER

Dal Bhat is a ubiquitous Nepali meal, eaten twice a day by many locals. It consists of plain rice, a lentil soup, veggie curry, papad (poppadom), and some sort of pickle. Depending on the veggies available, you may also get saag (spinach) or something similar. Everything is served on a big plate, and you can get free refills of each item (apart from the papad!).

A serving of classic Nepali dish dal bhat on a brass plate, sitting on a peach coloured wooden table

There are always free refills of rice, dal and curry with Dal Bhat, giving rise to the familiar catchphrase ‘Dal Bhat power 24 hour’



Dal Bhat, the national dish of Nepal, on a copper dish set on a blue wooden table

With Dal Bhat, there are always free refills of
at least the rice, dal and curry, giving rise to the
familiar catchphrase, ‘Dal Bhat power 24 hour’



Other options include various soups (some fresh, some from a packet), basic pasta dishes (usually fried), fried rice, fried noodles, boiled or fried potatoes, and momos (steamed or fried dumplings). Ingredients more or less revolve around eggs, cheese, potatoes, carrots, cabbage, onion, garlic, and tinned tuna.

 Meal options are generally priced between 350 – 700 NPR (approx $3 – $6 USD), depending on location and item.

DRINKS

Various hot drinks include black/green/milk/masala/mint/ginger lemon honey tea, instant coffee, and hot chocolate. You can order a single cup or a small/medium/large thermos (called ‘pots’). Cups or pots of hot water are also available.

Seabuckthorn juice is commonly available, served either hot or cold. Seabuckthorn grows locally and is harvested and turned into juice in autumn, making this the best season to try it, although it is often still available in spring.

Soft drinks like Coke, Fanta, and Sprite are available to buy at each guesthouse shop, along with bottled water (although we recommend purifying tap water to drink instead of buying bottled water). You can also buy beer (bottles/cans) and small bottles of Khukuri rum, however it’s best to avoid alcohol at higher altitudes as this dehydrates you and makes acclimatisation more difficult.

Hot drinks are on average about 150 NPR per cup ($1 USD), or up to 1500 – 2000 NPR per large pot ($11 – $15 USD). Soft drinks are about 400 NPR ($3 USD), bottled water is about 350 NPR ($2.5 USD), and beer is about 800 NPR ($6 USD).

SNACKS AND DESSERTS

You can buy chocolate bars, biscuits, and Pringles at most guesthouse shops. Other snacks like popcorn, papad, prawn crackers, yak cheese, or french fries are often available on the menu, and you can usually get desserts like apple, Snickers, or Mars spring rolls/fritters/pies/momos.

Prices for Snickers/Mars are around 300 NPR ($2 USD), packets of biscuits start from 100 NPR ($.80 USD), and Pringles are about 600 NPR ($5.5 USD). Desserts range from 300 – 600 NPR ($2 – $5.5 USD).

The snacks, drinks and sundries on sale at the Ganesh View Hotel in Rimche on the Langtang Valley trek

A typical example of what’s on sale in Langtang Valley guesthouses 



The snacks, drinks and sundries on sale at the Ganesh View Hotel in Rimche on the Langtang Valley trek

A fairly typical example of what’s on sale
at guesthouses
 in the Langtang Valley 



BAKERIES AND COFFEE SHOPS

Proper coffee machines are starting to make an appearance in the upper reaches of the Langtang Valley, brought to the area at much expense via helicopter. A real americano goes perfectly with a baked goodie such as a brownie, cinnamon bun, or slice of apple pie, available at bakeries in Langtang and Kyanjin Gompa, as well as a few other select spots. Our personal favourite is the Himalayan Bakery in Langtang, run by friendly Mapsing.

Coffee costs around 300 – 400 NPR ($2 – $3 USD), and bakery treats are usually around 400 – 600 NPR ($3 – $5.5 USD).

SAFE DRINKING WATER ON THE LANGTANG VALLEY TREK

LANGTANG VALLEY TREK //

SAFE DRINKING WATER

Bottled water is available to buy along the trail, however a much better option (environmentally and economically!) is to treat tap water and drink this instead. Come prepared with a refillable water bottle and/or water bladder, and a method of treating the water to make it safe for drinking.

The cheapest option is to use water purification tablets. You drop these into the water, wait about 30 minutes, then your water is safe to drink (although it can have a strange taste due to the active chemical in the tablets, ie. iodine or chlorine). You can buy these easily in supermarkets and outdoor shops in Kathmandu.

Our preferred method of water sterilisation is to use a Steripen Ultra in conjunction with a filter. The filter screws onto the top of our Nalgene water bottle and ensures any weird floaty bits or particulates are filtered out. Then we stick the Steripen into 1 litre of water for 90 seconds and the UV light sterilises the water, making it safe to drink immediately and with no change to the taste. The Steripen Ultra model is rechargeable via USB, so we can charge it using our solar panel, power bank, or an electrical socket. We always carry water purification tablets as an emergency backup, although we’ve never had to use them during 6+ years of using the Steripen.

A Lifestraw water bottle for safe drinking water


A Steripen Ultra sterilises water to make it safe for drinking


water purification tablets to make drinking water safe


Other common sterilisation methods include a Lifestraw, Grayl, Water-To Go, or a squeeze filter system.

THINKING ABOUT THE MANASLU CIRCUIT TOO?

WIFI, PHONE SIGNAL, AND CHARGING ON THE LANGTANG VALLEY TREK

LANGTANG VALLEY TREK //

WIFI, PHONE SIGNAL, AND CHARGING

Nepal Telecom SIM cards work best in the Langtang Valley, with a phone signal and (weak) data connection available for most of the trek up to Rimche, and between Ghodatabela and Kyanjin Gompa. NCell doesn’t get much of a phone signal or data connection beyond Syabrubesi.

WiFi is available at a number of guesthouses and bakeries along the trail, although this is often via a hotspot connection to a staff member’s phone. The more people connected, the slower the internet service. There is often a charge of 300 NPR ($2 USD) for unlimited use per stay at a guesthouse. There is no WiFi or phone signal at Lama Hotel or other locations in the narrow valley area, such as Riverside/Gumnachok. Poor weather conditions can affect WiFi connectivity, with no guarantees that it will be working 24/7. In short, you can’t rely on having an internet connection every day, however you will be able to access the internet regularly throughout the trek.

A collection of older guesthouses at Lama Hotel, a small teahouse only settlement used by most trekkers on the Langtang Valley trek

In a deep and narrow section of the Langtang Valley, there is no wifi, data connection, or phone signal at Lama Hotel



A collection of older guesthouses at Lama Hotel, a small teahouse only settlement used by most trekkers on the Langtang Valley trek

There is no wifi, data connection, or phone signal
at Lama Hotel, a collection of older guesthouses
in
a deep, narrow section of the Langtang Valley



Many guesthouses run off solar power and free in-room charging isn’t always available, although we had sockets in our room at four out of six guesthouses on the Langtang Valley trek. At our guesthouse in Lama Hotel, solar power was so limited that charging wasn’t possible at all, and in Thangshyap, charging in the dining room was possible for a fee per device.

Generally speaking, if there are no sockets in your room then you will be able to charge in the dining room, but there may be a fee per device (eg. 150 NPR (~$1 USD) for a phone or 250 NPR (~$2 USD) for a camera battery.

It’s a good idea to pack a power bank (or two, depending on your usage), enabling you to charge your phone and batteries on-the-go. You can charge your power bank overnight in your room or in the dining room when you don’t need it. A portable solar panel can also be useful although it’s certainly not necessary and will add extra weight to your pack; not worth buying unless you will use it on other treks and outdoor adventures in the future.

LANGTANG VALLEY TREK COST AND BUDGET

LANGTANG VALLEY TREK //

COSTS AND BUDGET

The cost of your Langtang Valley trek will very much depend on how you choose to trek (whether independently or with a guide), and how many people you share the costs with. The cheapest option is to trek independently as a duo, opting to travel by public transport and sleep in rooms with shared bathroom facilities every night. Trekking with a guide and porter as part of an inclusive trek package, taking private transport, and sleeping in rooms with attached bathrooms wherever possible, will cost more.

Below is a breakdown of the average costs for a Langtang Valley trek.

LANGTANG VALLEY TREK COSTS

TRANSPORT

3000 NPR ($23 USD) taxi to bus station + public bus (per person return)

$340 USD private jeep return (cost can be shared between up to 7 people)

PERMITS

3000 NPR ($23 USD) per person
(1500 NPR for SAARC nationals/100 NPR for Nepalis)

ACCOMMODATION

Twin Room w/ attached bathroom, average cost 1000 NPR ($7.50 USD) per night (for 1 or 2 people)

Twin Room w/ shared bathroom, average cost 500 NPR ($3.80 USD) per night (for 1 or 2 people)

FOOD

3 x meals with hot drinks, average 2500 NPR ($19 USD) per person, per day

Extra Snacks (chocolate bars, biscuits, soft drinks) average 1000 NPR ($7.50 USD) per person, per day

For a detailed look at prices, check out the Langtang Valley menu in the food section above

WIFI/CHARGING

Average 300 NPR ($2.30 USD) per person, per day

GUIDE

$20 – $30 USD per day
(cost can be shared with up to 5 people)

PORTER

$18 – $25 USD per day
(max weight carried 25 kg, cost can be shared between 2-3 people)

TIPS

Expected by guides and porters

Recommended minimum amount is:

500 NPR ($4 USD) per person, per day for guides

400 NPR ($3 USD) per person, per day for porters

For larger groups, tip 10% of total tour cost to be split between all trekking staff

LANGTANG VALLEY TREK COSTS

TRANSPORT

3000 NPR ($23 USD) taxi to bus station + public bus (per person return)

$340 USD private jeep return (cost can be shared between up to 7 people)

PERMITS

3000 NPR ($23 USD) per person
(1500 NPR for SAARC nationals, 100 NPR for Nepalis)

ACCOMMODATION

Twin Room w/ attached bathroom, average cost 1000 NPR ($7.50 USD) per night (for 1 or 2 people)

Twin Room w/ shared bathroom, average cost 500 NPR ($3.80 USD) per night (for 1 or 2 people)

FOOD

3 x meals with hot drinks, average 2500 NPR ($19 USD) per person, per day

Extra Snacks (chocolate bars, biscuits, soft drinks) average 1000 NPR ($7.50 USD) per person, per day

For a detailed look at prices, check out the Langtang Valley menu in the food section above

WIFI/CHARGING

Average 300 NPR ($2.30 USD) per person, per day

GUIDE

$20 – $30 USD per day (cost can be shared with up to 5 people)

PORTER

$18 – $25 USD per day (max weight carried 25 kg, cost can be shared between 2-3 people)

TIPS

Expected by guides and porters

Recommended minimum amount is:

500 NPR ($4 USD) per person, per day for guides

400 NPR ($3 USD) per person, per day for porters

For larger groups, tip 10% of total tour cost to be split between all trekking staff


In summary, the average cost for an 8 – 10 day Langtang Valley trek is about $24 per day for a budget trekker sharing a room with one person and trekking independently, with no guide or porter. A fully inclusive package is about $100 per day. Other considerations, such as trekking with a guide but no porter, buying lots of snacks, or staying in more expensive rooms, would see your daily budget falling somewhere between these two figures.

MONEY AND ATMs ON THE LANGTANG VALLEY TREK

You must bring all the cash you need from Kathmandu, in Nepalese rupees. There is an ATM in Kyanjin Gompa, but it wasn’t working when we visited and by all accounts it can’t be relied upon. It’s a good idea to have a mixture of large and small bills, as guesthouses, teashops, and bakeries don’t usually have change.

ATMs in Nepal have maximum withdrawal limits (usually 35,000 NPR), and your bank card is also likely to have a max daily withdrawal limit. Be sure to plan ahead and start withdrawing cash a few days in advance if you need to carry a lot.

PLAN YOUR TREK ON THE ANNAPURNA CIRCUIT

WHAT TO PACK FOR THE LANGTANG VALLEY TREK

LANGTANG VALLEY TREK //

WHAT TO PACK

We have outlined packing recommendations for a Nepal trek in our What To Pack For Trekking in Nepal guide, so be sure to check this out for a complete rundown. You can also download our Nepal Packing List, a useful online or printable checklist for your trek.

In a nutshell, you will need clothes suitable for trekking in warm and cold conditions and for changing into in the evening, gear to use on the trail and at your guesthouse, any relevant electronics, hygiene and first aid items, and a few essentials such as cash, emergency contact details, travel insurance documents, and your passport.

If you arrive in Nepal without the appropriate gear for trekking, you can buy and/or rent everything you need in Kathmandu (either fake or genuine items). Some trekking agencies provide gear free of charge to clients. Himalayan Masters, for example, provide sleeping bags, down jackets, trekking poles, water bottles, purification tablets, caps, and T-Shirts, plus a duffel bag if you’re trekking with a porter.

You can leave any excess luggage at your hotel in Kathmandu and pick it up when you return from your trek.

ALTITUDE AWARENESS

LANGTANG VALLEY TREK //

ALTITUDE AWARENESS

Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS), also commonly referred to as Altitude Sickness, can affect people at heights of around 2500 m and above. It can affect anyone regardless of age, physical fitness, or other factors. The higher you go the less oxygen there is, and it takes time for your body to adjust. Symptoms of AMS, such as headaches, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, fatigue, or loss of appetite, can occur when your body is not properly acclimatised to being at a particular altitude. The highest sleeping altitude on the Langtang Valley trek is around 3865 m, at Kyanjin Gompa. The highest points you are likely to trek to are Kyanjin Ri (4586 m) and Tsergo Ri (just under 4965 m).

AMS can develop into the life-threatening conditions of HACE or HAPE, therefore symptoms of AMS should never be ignored. Read up on the causes, symptoms, and treatments for AMS prior to your trek – it could save your life or that of a fellow trekker! We have found the altitude.org website helpful, along with the PDF booklet about Travel at High Altitude (available in a number of languages) produced by Medex. A number of other medical websites, such as the NHS, are also good resources.

In a nutshell, the best way to avoid developing AMS (or the life-threatening conditions of HACE or HAPE) is to follow medically advised best-practices. This includes ascending slowly, sleeping no more than 300 – 500 metres higher than the previous night, taking a rest day for every 1000 metres ascended above 2500 m, staying well hydrated by drinking lots of water, and going on acclimatisation hikes where you can climb high but return to sleep at a lower altitude.

Two trekkers and their guide smiling as they pose for a celebration shot at the summit of Tsergo Ri (4965 m), the highest point most trekkers reach on the Langtang Valley trek

Getting to the top of Tsergo Ri (4965 m) is a great feeling; make sure you acclimatise properly so you can enjoy it!



Two trekkers and their guide smiling as they pose for a celebration shot at the summit of Tsergo Ri (4965 m), the highest point most trekkers reach on the Langtang Valley trek

Getting to the top of Tsergo Ri is a fantastic feeling;
acclimatise properly beforehand so you can enjoy it!



If you develop AMS symptoms, do not ascend any higher. Rest, drink water, eat something, take paracetamol and ibuprofen to help with the pain, and assess whether your condition is worsening or improving. If it is worsening, you should descend to a lower altitude immediately. If it is improving or staying the same, rest at the same altitude for a night and allow your body more time to acclimatise before ascending.

Acetazolamide (Diamox) is a tablet that can be taken as a preventative to AMS, or as a treatment to help reduce the symptoms. It helps to speed up the acclimatisation process by causing you to breathe deeper and faster, resulting in higher oxygen concentrations in the body. It usually comes in tablets of 250 mg and the dosage is 125 mg twice a day. You can speak to a medical professional prior to your trip about taking Acetazolamide (Diamox). It is available to purchase over the counter at pharmacies in Kathmandu and trekking guides will often carry it in their first aid kit. Common side effects of taking Acetazolamide (Diamox) are tingling fingers, lips, and/or feet.

Note that many guides and locals will advise you to eat garlic soup as a remedy to AMS, but there is no medical evidence to support this notion.

TRAVEL INSURANCE FOR TREKKING IN NEPAL

LANGTANG VALLEY TREK //

TRAVEL INSURANCE FOR TREKKING IN NEPAL

You will have the chance to trek up to nearly 5000 m on the Langtang Valley trek. Trekking to this altitude is NOT automatically covered by most travel insurance providers, but you should be able to pay extra for an add-on ‘activity pack’ which will cover you for trekking at such heights. When choosing your travel insurance policy, it’s also wise to ensure you have Search and Rescue cover and Medical Evacuation cover included.

Always check the inclusions and exclusions of your policy carefully. Some travel insurance providers have specific exclusions or conditions when it comes to trekking in Nepal. For example, the excess for helicopter evacuation may be considerably higher for Nepal than elsewhere. This is due in part to a scam in recent years whereby trekkers who become ill are pressured or encouraged to fly out of the mountains by helicopter for medical attention, with unscrupulous guides, helicopter companies, doctors, and even some trekkers themselves, profiting from the scam.

You should also make a note of the correct procedure for medical emergencies and the insurance company emergency contact number. Add this information to your phone, and keep a written copy with you while trekking.

Whether you are currently in your home country or are already travelling, two travel insurance policy providers that can cover you for trekking in Nepal are World Nomads (for residents of 140+ countries) and True Traveller (for UK and EEA residents only). We have purchased travel insurance policies from both of these companies on numerous occasions and have found their policies to be comprehensive, and their online claims and extension processes straightforward.

If you still need to organise travel insurance, we’d suggest getting a quote from each to see which suits you best.

Click the links below to get a quote

Click the links to get a quote


LANGTANG VALLEY ADD-ON TREKS

LANGTANG VALLEY TREK //

ADD-ON TREKS

It’s possible to combine a Langtang Valley trek with other treks in the region. One option is the Tamang Heritage Trail, a 5 to 6 day route which also starts and ends at Syabrubesi. Another option (and the add-on trek that we chose) is Gosainkunda, a high altitude lake and holy pilgrimage site. This adds 4 to 6 days onto your trek. You can start/end at Dhunche just south of Syabrubesi, or cross the Laurebina Pass and end at Kutumsang, Chisapani or Sundarijal, northeast of Kathmandu.

Read our Complete Guide to the Gosainkunda Trek and Gosainkunda Trail Notes to find out more and plan your own Langtang Gosainkunda trek.

Gosainkunda, a high altitude lake close to the Langtang Valley, with the surrounding landscape covered in snow

Gosainkunda is a great addition to a Langtang trek, requiring an extra 4 – 6 days



Gosainkunda, a high altitude lake close to the Langtang Valley, with the surrounding landscape covered in snow

Gosainkunda is a great addition
to a Langtang trek, requiring
an extra 4 – 6 days



It’s also possible to climb Yala Peak (5500 m) from Kyanjin Gompa. This is usually a 2 day expedition, camping at Yala Peak Base Camp on Day 1, then summiting the peak and returning to Kyanjin Gompa on Day 2.

You can organise each of these add-on treks plus a Yala Peak climb via Himalayan Masters (our recommended local trekking agency) and get 5% off your trip cost if you mention our referral code HOGG5. Contact them by email at info@himalayan-masters.com.

GETTING TO NEPAL

LANGTANG VALLEY TREK //

GETTING TO NEPAL

OVERLAND

It’s possible to travel overland from India to Nepal, crossing the border at Sunauli. The route and details are described in this post on Seat 61.

FLYING

The easiest way to get to Nepal is by flying and this is how the vast majority of people arrive. A number of different airlines operate flights to Nepal’s only international airport, Tribhuvan International Airport, on the outskirts of Kathmandu. There are very few long distance direct flights to Nepal, so you can expect to transfer somewhere in Asia or the Middle East, depending on your direction of travel.

It’s best to book your flights at the earliest possible opportunity. During busy times, such as the peak trekking seasons in spring and autumn, flights are often fully booked.

CHECK FLIGHT OPTIONS HERE


ARRIVING AT KATHMANDU AIRPORT

There is a money exchange booth next to the visa payment counter, prior to passing through immigration. There is an ATM next to the visa payment counter too, however it is unreliable. More ATMs are available after passing through immigration, but it’s best to have some cash with you just in case.

You can arrange a SIM from NCell or Nepal Telecom at arrivals, and SIM cards are also available from many small shops in Thamel.

AIRPORT TAXI

A taxi from the airport to Thamel costs approximately 800 – 1000 NPR ($6 – $7.50 USD) and takes between 15 – 30 minutes depending on traffic and the time of day. There are prepaid taxi counters at arrivals, or you can negotiate a fare with a taxi driver outside (there are no metered taxis). You need to pay cash.

PLAN YOUR TREK TO UPPER MUSTANG

NEPAL TOURIST VISAS

LANGTANG VALLEY TREK //

NEPAL TOURIST VISAS

Tourist visas are available on arrival at Tribhuvan International Airport and at all land border crossings that are open to foreign travellers.

While tourist visas on arrival are available for many foreign passport holders, citizens of some countries are required to get a visa prior to arrival, while those from SAARC countries can get their visa free of charge.

See the Nepal Immigration website for more details.

NEPAL VISA ON ARRIVAL

There are three Nepal tourist visas available and three things you must have to get one on arrival:

NEPAL TOURIST VISAS

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

WHAT YOU NEED

  • A passport valid for at least six months
  • At least one blank page in your passport
  • The visa fee in cash (US Dollars is best)

The Nepal tourist visa on arrival process is as follows:

NEPAL VISA ON ARRIVAL PROCESS

  1. Go to the machines to the right as you enter the arrivals hall. You’ll need your passport details and hotel address. After filling in the required details on the screen, take a photo of the confirmation page on your phone (the printer doesn’t work).
  2. Next, you need to pay for your visa at the desk on the left as you enter the arrivals hall. You can show the confirmation on your phone. They want a cash payment for the visa. A sign indicates that a number of currencies are acceptable, including EUR, GBP, CAD, USD, AUD, JPY, KRW, AED, SGD, THB, MYR, CHF, DKK, QAD, SAR, CNY, HKD, KWD, and BHD. Note that they will NOT accept Bank of Scotland GBP notes, only Bank of England notes. You cannot pay in NPR. The sign says they accept card payments, but they will refuse and advise you that you must pay cash. If you insist hard enough, then they’ll send you to the desk on the far left to pay at a card machine with a $1 surcharge. The machine can be temperamental and the payment may fail to go through a few times. Also, it’s treated as a cash advance from your credit card, not a transaction, so you’ll probably be charged a cash withdrawal fee by your credit card company. After paying for your visa you’ll get a receipt.
  3. Take the receipt of visa payment, your passport, and boarding pass for your flight into Kathmandu to the immigration desk and get stamped through.

WHERE TO STAY IN KATHMANDU

LANGTANG VALLEY TREK //

WHERE TO STAY IN KATHMANDU

Thamel is the main tourist hub in Kathmandu, with plenty of restaurants, bars, shops, and services aimed at trekkers. Below are our accommodation recommendations for before and after your Langtang Valley trek, with something to suit all budgets.

BUDGET KATHMANDU ACCOMMODATION

Flock Hostel | Dorm and Private rooms, modern design, close to Thamel, rooftop bar and terrace, restaurant

Zostel Kathmandu | Dorm and Private rooms, terrace, bar, restaurant, close to Thamel

Flying Yak | Dorm and Private rooms, modern design, central Thamel, bar, terrace  

Yakety Yak | Dorm and Private rooms, sleek modern design, rooftop terrace, bar, restaurant, central Thamel

Bag Packer’s Lodge | Budget private rooms with shared or private bathroom, rooftop terrace, restaurant, central Thamel location

MID-RANGE KATHMANDU ACCOMMODATION

9ine Thamel | Sleek minimalist design, central Thamel, excellent restaurant 

Nomad Hotel | Tasteful modern design, short walk from Thamel, restaurant and terrace

Oasis Kathmandu Hotel | Good location in Thamel, restaurant, generically ‘nice’ decor

Kathmandu Aagantuk Hotel | Good location in Thamel, restaurant, generically ‘nice’ decor, some rooms with balconies

Hotel Roadhouse | Stylish Modern design with heritage feel, central Thamel, popular restaurant on ground floor

HIGH-END KATHMANDU ACCOMMODATION

Dalai-La | Central Thamel, courtyard restaurant, artistic Nepali design

Hotel Thamel House | Classic heritage style with lots of brick and wood, leafy courtyard restaurant, central Thamel

Kathmandu Marriott Hotel | Sleek and minimal design, walking distance to Thamel, Nimsdai store on-site

Aloft Kathmandu |  Modern design, Thamel location

Baber Mahal Vilas – The Heritage Hotel | Heritage boutique hotel invoking a range of historic styles 

The Dwarika’s Hotel | 5* luxury heritage style hotel, half-way between airport and Thamel


SEE MORE KATHMANDU ACCOMMODATION HERE