Chomolhari Basecamp and the Bonte La

A spectacular circuit trek to Chomolhari Basecamp at Jangothang (4040m)

12

days

Trek

From $3,700 Land only

Book this holiday

Holiday Overview

Highlights

  • Fully supported trekking, with stunning views of Jitchu Drake and Chomolhari
  • Trek past the azure Tsho Phu lakes and cross the Bonte La (4890m)
  • Hike to the world famous Taktsang 'Tiger's Nest' Monastery
  • Bhutan visa fees, ALL meals, and return flights from Kathmandu to Paro included!

This spectacular circuit trek will take us all the way to Bhutan's Chomolhari Base Camp and across 3 high passes in under 2 weeks, what's more we've also time for sightseeing in bustling Kathmandu and idyllic Paro, famous for the dramatic, cliff-side Taktsang Monastery. Arriving into Paro from Kathmandu, Nepal, our stunning trek takes us north of Paro, deep into the valley of the Paro Chu. This quiet and pristine valley provides a passage between the Himalayan foothills and the towering white peaks on the border with Tibet. Our route follows the river upstream for 3 days to the meadows at Jangothang, the basecamp for Chomolhari (7326m), a sacred peak on the border of Bhutan and Tibet. Then, after a day for exploration and acclimatisation above this camp, we turn away from the valley trail and climb to the picturesque Tsho Phu lakes. From here, we ascend to cross the airy Bonte La (4890m), where we'll enjoy some increasingly impressive views of Chomolhari and the imposing spire of Jitchu Drake. Now at high level, we trek via hidden valleys and along scenic ridges to reach our stunning campsite on the yak pastures of Thongbu, before descending on herders' trails to Drugyel Dzong. Very few trekking groups complete this superb circuit, which is undoubtably one of the best short treks in Bhutan. We end our holiday with a day of sightseeing around Paro, including a chance to hike to the Tiger's Nest monastery of course, and we've even time to enjoy a tour of Kathmandu before heading home.

 

BOOK EARLY for BHUTAN! With only two airlines operating flights into Paro from Kathmandu, seats are limited and in high demand. Book early to guarantee your place on your chosen departure. We strongly advise booking a year in advance where possible.

Is this holiday for you?

Trekking conditions on the circuit are reasonably straightforward, since the trail has been well prepared for the ponies or yaks that are traditionally used to carry supplies on the route; there are no glaciers to negotiate although we may encounter snow on some of the passes. However, the trekking is sustained and does involve some long days and the crossing of three passes over 4000 metres, including the Bonte La at 4890 metres, so good level of fitness is essential. We'll cover a variety of terrain; from fertile and intensively terraced farmland, through some of the finest mixed forest in the world, to open, alpine pastureland and high mountain valleys and passes.

Brief Itinerary

View in full
  • Meet at the group hotel in Kathmandu. Transfers from Kathmandu Airport are provided.
  • Fly to Paro in the Kingdom of Bhutan.
  • Drive to Drugyel Dzong (2530m) and on to Shana (2860m). Trek to Thongo Samba (3250m).
  • Trek to Soi Thangka (3575m).
  • Trek to Jangothang (4040m).
  • Acclimatisation day at Jangothang.
  • Cross the Bonte La (4890m) and trek down into the Yaksa Valley.
  • Cross the Tagun La (4520m) and descend to Thongbu (4180m).
  • Cross the Thombu La (4270m) to Shana (2820m). Drive back to Paro.
  • A day sightseeing around the Paro Valley, including a visit to Taktsang (the Tiger's Nest) Monastery.
  • Fly to Kathmandu. Half day sightseeing tour.
  • Departure day. Transfers to Kathmandu Airport are provided.
2016
Sun 01 May - Thu 12 May Code CHO /01/16/
Chomolhari Basecamp - Classic Trek
Adult$3,700 Status Departed
More information
  • Chomolhari Basecamp and the Bonte La - Chomolhari Basecamp - Classic Trek
  • The departure reference for this tour is CHO /01/16/
  • This tour begins on Sun 01 May and departs on Thu 12 May
  • This trip has already departed
  • Single Supplement $245 - 5 group hotel nights in Kathmandu and in Bhutan (single tent not included)
  • Single Tent $135
Sun 18 Sep - Thu 29 Sep Code CHO /02/16/
Chomolhari Basecamp - Classic Trek
Adult$3,860 Status Guaranteed Book now
More information
  • Chomolhari Basecamp and the Bonte La - Chomolhari Basecamp - Classic Trek
  • The departure reference for this tour is CHO /02/16/
  • This tour begins on Sun 18 Sep and departs on Thu 29 Sep
  • This departure is guaranteed. Secure your place today with a deposit of $1,000
  • Single Supplement $245 - 5 group hotel nights in Kathmandu and in Bhutan (single tent not included)
  • Single Tent $135
Sun 02 Oct - Thu 13 Oct Code CHO /03/16/
Chomolhari Basecamp - Classic Trek
Adult$3,860 Status Available Book now
More information
  • Chomolhari Basecamp and the Bonte La - Chomolhari Basecamp - Classic Trek
  • The departure reference for this tour is CHO /03/16/
  • This tour begins on Sun 02 Oct and departs on Thu 13 Oct
  • This departure is available to book. Secure your place today with a deposit of $1,000
  • Single Supplement $245 - 5 group hotel nights in Kathmandu and in Bhutan (single tent not included)
  • Single Tent $135
Mon 24 Oct - Fri 04 Nov Code CHO /04/16/
Chomolhari Basecamp - Classic Trek
Adult$3,860 Status Limited Availability Book now
More information
  • Chomolhari Basecamp and the Bonte La - Chomolhari Basecamp - Classic Trek
  • The departure reference for this tour is CHO /04/16/
  • This tour begins on Mon 24 Oct and departs on Fri 04 Nov
  • This departure has limited availability. Don't delay - secure your place today with a deposit of $1,000
  • Single Supplement $245 - 5 group hotel nights in Kathmandu and in Bhutan (single tent not included)
  • Single Tent $135
2017
Mon 01 May - Fri 12 May Code CHO /01/17/
Chomolhari Basecamp - Classic Trek
Adult$4,020 Status Available Book now
More information
  • Chomolhari Basecamp and the Bonte La - Chomolhari Basecamp - Classic Trek
  • The departure reference for this tour is CHO /01/17/
  • This tour begins on Mon 01 May and departs on Fri 12 May
  • This departure is available to book. Secure your place today with a deposit of $1,000
  • Single Supplement $245 - 5 group hotel nights in Kathmandu and in Bhutan (single tent not included)
  • Single Tent $135
Mon 09 Oct - Fri 20 Oct Code CHO /02/17/
Chomolhari Basecamp - Classic Trek
Adult$4,020 Status Available Book now
More information
  • Chomolhari Basecamp and the Bonte La - Chomolhari Basecamp - Classic Trek
  • The departure reference for this tour is CHO /02/17/
  • This tour begins on Mon 09 Oct and departs on Fri 20 Oct
  • This departure is available to book. Secure your place today with a deposit of $1,000
  • Single Supplement $245 - 5 group hotel nights in Kathmandu and in Bhutan (single tent not included)
  • Single Tent $135
Mon 23 Oct - Fri 03 Nov Code CHO /03/17/
Chomolhari Basecamp - Classic Trek
Adult$4,020 Status Available Book now
More information
  • Chomolhari Basecamp and the Bonte La - Chomolhari Basecamp - Classic Trek
  • The departure reference for this tour is CHO /03/17/
  • This tour begins on Mon 23 Oct and departs on Fri 03 Nov
  • This departure is available to book. Secure your place today with a deposit of $1,000
  • Single Supplement $245 - 5 group hotel nights in Kathmandu and in Bhutan (single tent not included)
  • Single Tent $135
The LAND ONLY dates and prices are for the itinerary joining in Kathmandu, Nepal. For clients making their own flight arrangements, Kathmandu International airport is the most convenient for transfers to the group hotel. Please refer to the 'Joining arrangements & transfers' section in the trip dossier for further details.

Flights SHOULD NOT be booked until you have received your booking confirmation and the trip is showing 'Guaranteed to Run' or 'Limited'.


BOOK WITH KE CONFIDENCE - No surcharge guarantee

We have undertaken to guarantee that all of our Land Only prices will not change once you have booked your holiday. Unlike some of our competitors we have decided never to surcharge, whether you are booking for this year or the next.

poweredByWorldPay
VISAmastercard

Map & Itinerary

The Route

  • airport
  • point
  • peaks
  • trip direction
  • pass
  • pass
  • pass
  • pass
  • internalflight
  • trek
  • transfer

Holiday Itinerary

  • Meet at the group hotel in Kathmandu. Transfers from Kathmandu Airport are provided.

    Meet at the group hotel in Kathmandu. Transfers from Kathmandu Airport are provided. KE Land Only package services begin with the evening meal.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Meals d

  • Fly to Paro in the Kingdom of Bhutan.

    We transfer to the airport for the flight to Bhutan’s only airport, at Paro. The flight from Kathmandu to Bhutan is one of the most spectacular of all mountain flights. From the left side of the plane Everest, Makalu and Kangchenjunga, three of the world’s highest mountains, are clearly visible. The total flying time is only 45 minutes and soon we are descending into the Paro Valley, enjoying the splendid views of alpine forests, small monasteries, temples and flat-roofed farmhouses. You will receive a warm welcome from our Bhutanese hosts who will assist with the transfer to the hotel. The Paro Valley is enchanting. A single road lined with willows, clear mountain streams, families working in the roadside fields and one of Bhutan’s most impressive Dzongs (fortress monasteries) creates a memorable first impression. After checking into our hotel in Paro the rest of the day is free to look around the town.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Meals bld

  • Drive to Drugyel Dzong (2530m) and on to Shana (2860m). Trek to Thongo Samba (3250m).

    We can enjoy a leisurely start to the day as the distance we can trek in the first couple of days is limited by the need to gain altitude slowly. We drive for 15 - 20 minutes to the end of the surfaced road at Drugyel Dzong (2530m). From Drugyel Dzong we continue in 4X4 vehicles following a newly built farm road for around 1.5 hours, passing through small hamlets of houses built in traditional Bhutanese design. Arriving at the end of the farm road at Shana (2860m), we will be happy to stretch our legs. While our bags are loaded on the ponies we will set off following a path beside the river before climbing through beautiful lush forest of oak, rhododendron, bamboo and pine. After 2 - 2.5 hours we pass the 2-house hamlet of Shing Karap. Beyond here the trail forks with one path leading across the Tremo La (forbidden pass) to Tibet. We take the other path following the main river. We make a steep climb and descent to cross the river on a bridge and soon after we reach the clearing of Thongo Samba (3250m) where we make camp.

    • Accommodation Camping

    • Meals bld

    • Time 4 hrs trekking

  • Trek to Soi Thangka (3575m).

    A reasonably short day of trekking today, but it is important at this stage to gain height slowly. We continue along the river through a magnificent forest of pine and spruce, mixed with oak, birch and maple. The autumn colours of the leaves contrasts with the Pale Spanish moss (old man’s beard) festoons many of the trees. After rain the trail can be muddy in places and where we cross streams there will possibly be slippery rocks to contend with, however, our local guides will be on hand to assist anyone if necessary. There are several small ups and downs today as we follow the river north and after crossing a bridge at 3560m. we make a short steep climb to reach a junction of two valleys, marked by a large chorten. There is a bridge here from where, weather permitting, we can see Chomolhari at the head of the valley. Our trail stays on the west bank of the Paro Chu and our next camp at Soi Thangka (3575m) is only a half an hour’s walk away.

    • Accommodation Camping

    • Meals bld

    • Time 3 - 4 hrs trekking

  • Trek to Jangothang (4040m).

    We have a longer day today. Our destination is Jangothang, a beautiful grassy meadow beneath the enormous east face of Chomolhari. We pass a small army post at 3600 metres and a chorten a little higher and then, leaving the forest behind, we enter more open country and encounter our first yaks. Our way continues through lovely juniper forest, to a tiny hamlet where we take a cooked lunch. As is the case with every meal in Bhutan, chillies are also provided, and we may be able to try the local thomba (beer made from barley), tsampa (roasted flour) or even Tibetan butter tea. Our camp is a little further on, by a ruined dzong (4040m) beneath the huge east face of Chomolhari.

    • Accommodation Camping

    • Meals bld

    • Time 5 -6 hrs trekking

  • Acclimatisation day at Jangothang.

    Today is a scheduled rest day, intended to aid everyone’s acclimatisation before the crossing of the Bonte La. There are plenty of options for a walk, and one possibility is a hike up the ridge behind the ruined dzong to a grassy summit at approximately 5000 metres, from where there is an incredible close-up view of Chomolhari. For a spectacular view of Jitchu Drake closer to camp (even better at sunrise if you can get up sufficiently early), follow the river for 20 minutes to a lone house and here the mountain is presented before you. No matter what you choose to do today, the cooks will have had all day to prepare dinner and a veritable banquet will be waiting at the end of the day.

    • Accommodation Camping

    • Meals bld

  • Cross the Bonte La (4890m) and trek down into the Yaksa Valley.

    A long but spectacular day of trekking. Crossing the river on a simple plank bridge we begin a steady climb on a zig zag trail over steep mountain side to reach the flower carpeted meadows of the hanging valley above. This is prime grazing country so there will usually be yaks scattered about and possibly blue sheep. The sheep and the yak calves are prey for snow leopards which inhabit this valley although you will be very lucky to spot one. A clear trail follows the shore of the two azure lakes of Tsho Phu. Beyond the second lake we start the climb to the Bonte La (4890m). The ascent is quite steep at first crossing scree slopes until we reach the upper part of the valley where there are sensational views back across the lakes which reflect the shapely Jichu Drake. From the upper valley the trail ascends more gradually to the summit of the pass where there are several cairns and prayer flags. After taking in the sensational views which include the peaks of the Basingthang group we begin the descent which starts out steeply over loose ground but soon eases. We pass a huge cliff and splendid waterfall before entering the rich forests of the deep canyon-like Yaksa Valley. We make our camp in the valley bottom near the river at 3800m.

    • Accommodation Camping

    • Meals bld

    • Time 7 - 8 hrs trekking

  • Cross the Tagun La (4520m) and descend to Thongbu (4180m).

    We climb through forests of rhododendron, birch and oak to a meadow and mani wall. Here there is the option to make a 20 minute detour (uphill) to see Sey Dzong a three story monastery wedged into a crack in a 300 metre high cliff and some 60 metres above the ground. There are remnants of stairs which once accessed the dzong although they are no longer complete. Returning to the mani wall, we now drop down to cross the river and begin a climb through the forest and finally above the tree line to gain the Tagun La (4520m). There are yet more spectacular views of the Himalaya and a short scramble up the hills above the pass will reveal the distant outline of Kanchenjunga, third highest mountain in the world, and Makalu, the fifth. We can also look back to the Bonte La. From the pass we have a short descent to Thongbu. Located in yak pastures at 4180m, this has got to be one of the most beautiful campsites in Bhutan.

    • Accommodation Camping

    • Meals bld

    • Time 5 - 6 hrs trekking

  • Cross the Thombu La (4270m) to Shana (2820m). Drive back to Paro.

    A great day of trekking among spectacular scenery. We begin by crossing the valley on a trail which can be quite boggy. On the other side we climb steadily though thick rhododendron forest to reach the Thombu La (4270m.). There are great views southeast to Djo Drake and on the Tibet-Bhutan border the relatively diminutive (in Himalayan terms) but impressive Drake Gang as well as a host of more distant big peaks on the border with Sikkim. From the pass we now follow a high ridge with sensational views of snow capped peaks. This is a highlight of the trek and we spend the best part of an hour walking the ridge, before we start our descent dropping steeply down for 2 - 3 hours. Knees will be crying ‘enough!’ by the time we complete the trek circuit, meeting our outward trail at Shana (2820m). Here we board our waiting vehicles for the 2 hour drive back to Paro where we check into our hotel and enjoy a shower before sitting down to dinner.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Meals bld

    • Time 5 - 6 hrs trekking

  • A day sightseeing around the Paro Valley, including a visit to Taktsang (the Tiger's Nest) Monastery.

    We have a welcome day for sightseeing in the Paro Valley, including the hike up to Taktsang Monastery. The Takstang or ‘Tiger’s Nest’ Monastery has the most stunning location, perched on a ledge of a cliff high above the Paro Valley. The monastery was partly destroyed by a fire in 1998 but, thanks in part to international aid, is now completely restored to its former magnificence. To reach the monastery involves a return trek of around 5 hours which in our post-trek fit and acclimatised condition should be no trouble. About half way to the monastery, there is a classic viewpoint for Takstang, looking across the gorge to the monastic buildings which cling, seemingly impossibly, to the cliff wall opposite. There is also a small café located at this viewpoint and this makes a great lunch spot. Another sightseeing option today if we have time is a visit to the National Museum housed in an ancient watch tower set high above the Paro Valley overlooking the Paro Dzong.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Meals bld

    • Time 5 - 6 hrs walking

  • Fly to Kathmandu. Half day sightseeing tour.

    A short transfer to Paro Airport to catch the flight to Kathmandu. The flight takes only around 45 minutes and on arrival we transfer to our comfortable hotel close to the centre of the city. As part of the holiday package we have arranged an optional sightseeing tour which will visit two or three major sites of interest in Kathmandu such as the great stupa at Bodhnath and the temple to Shiva on the ghats of the Bagmati River at Pashupatinath. In the evening, we will have a celebratory meal in one of the city's finest restaurants. Overnight at our Kathmandu hotel.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Meals bld

  • Departure day. Transfers to Kathmandu Airport are provided.

    KE Land Only package services end after breakfast. Transfers to Kathmandu airport are provided. There are lots of extensions that can easily be added to your holiday. Why not pre-book a simple full day-tour in the Kathmandu Valley, or a multi-day excursion to wildlife reserve at Chitwan. Contact the KE office for more details.

    • Meals b

Holiday Information

  • An experienced English-speaking local leader plus support crew
  • Kathmandu Airport transfers
  • Bhutan flights and transfers
  • All land transport involved in the itinerary
  • All accommodation as described
  • All meals as described in the Meal Plan
  • Guided sightseeing tour of Kathmandu
  • A full service on trek including food and all equipment (excluding personal equipment)
  • Travel Insurance
  • Nepalese visa costs
  • Departure taxes on leaving Kathmandu and Bhutan (if applicable)
  • Tips for drivers and trek staff
  • Miscellaneous expenses - drinks and souvenirs etc.

Typically the food in Bhutan is not very spicy though the Bhutanese do themselves eat a lot of chillies both raw and cooked. Hotels in Thimpu and Paro generally offer a range of dishes including those designed for the Western palette. On trek the emphasis is on providing a high-carbohydrate and largely vegetarian diet, which we have found to be easily digestible at high altitude. Breakfasts will consist of cereal or muesli, eggs, toast, beans, sausage or bacon with tea and coffee. Lunch is usually a hot meal which is cooked at breakfast time and carried in insulated pots. Dinner is a 3 course meal starting with soup and finishing with a sweet. The main dish is a mixture of local and Western cuisine, with the ingredients mostly purchased in Bhutan and cooked for us by highly trained trek cooks. In Kathmandu we take our meals in some of the finest restaurants the city has to offer. All meals while on trek and while staying in hotels are included in the trip price.

All meals are included from dinner on day 1 to breakfast on day 13.
Complimentary transfers between Kathmandu Airport and the group hotel are provided for all clients on arrival and departure. Land Only clients MUST inform us of their flight details and should let us know if the complimentary transfers are NOT required. Hotel contact details and an emergency telephone number will be provided with your booking confirmation.
This trip has 2 nights in Kathmandu, one en route to Bhutan and one on the return journey. We use a comfortable, centrally located hotel. In Bhutan we use the best available standard of hotel accommodation . Whilst on trek there are 6 nights camping. All accommodation is allocated on a twin sharing basis. If you are travelling by yourself you will be paired up with another single client of the same sex. It is possible to hire a single tent while on trek for an additional cost. Please note single tent hire does not include single rooms in hotels. For the 2 hotel nights in Kathmandu single rooms are available for a supplementary cost. Additional hotel nights in Kathmandu are also available. In Bhutan, single rooms are much more difficult to pre-book. However, it may be possible if there is availability. Please note that it will not be possible to book single rooms in Bhutan for festival trips. For Hotel prices and single supplement costs please refer to the dates and prices page of the trip on our website. Hotels are subject to availability and prices may vary.

View the gallery below for images of the style of accommodation used

Shortly after first light one of the cook crew will wake you with a cup of tea or coffee brought to your tent. You will have plenty of time to get up and pack your kitbag before sitting down to a hot breakfast, during which camp will be struck and the pack-horses will be loaded. Setting off in the cool of the morning, we will generally reach our lunch stop by mid day. A lunch transported in insulated pots, is served on route, or at the camp-site if the day is sufficiently short. The horses usually catch up with the group during lunch and are well on their way to camp which we hope to establish well before dusk. It is usual for the afternoon’s walk to be shorter than the morning session. On arrival at camp, the trek staff will quickly put the tents up and a hot drink will soon follow. Dinner is a 3-course meal served in the mess tent. This is a great time of day for reliving the events of the trek so far and for general socialising. After dark, the temperature quickly falls and everyone will soon be tucked up in their sleeping bags.

Flights to Bhutan

It is possible to fly to Bhutan from Kathmandu, Delhi, Bangkok and Singapore, as well as from Dhaka and several regional airports in India. Our preferred port of transit for this holiday is Kathmandu, which has daily flights to Paro and a good tourism infrastructure. In addition, Nepal visas are easily obtained on arrival and are relatively inexpensive. Druk Air and Bhutan Airlines are the only airlines operating flights to Bhutan and seats can be limited, particularly around the time of the major festivals. Early booking is essential. It is not always possible to confirm seats immediately and it is not uncommon for passengers to be ‘waitlisted’ for several weeks until their booking clears. In rare circumstances, it may be necessary to route our groups or individual clients through an alternative airport if waiting lists are not cleared in good time.

The group will be accompanied throughout by an experienced English-speaking local tour leader who will be assisted on the trek by local guides and a full trek crew including camp staff, cooks, baggage animals and their handlers.

Approximately £200 (or equivalent in Euros, US dollars etc.) should be allowed for miscellaneous expenses including approximately £50 for tips to local staff. We recommend that you carry your travel money in the form of cash, since you will exchange the majority of this on arrival (into Nepalese rupees in Kathmandu, and Bhutanese Ngultrum at Paro Airport). Sterling, US Dollars and Euros are equally acceptable for exchange in Nepal and in Bhutan. You can withdraw cash from ATM's in Kathmandu. In Bhutan money can be easily exchanged but you cannot rely on withdrawing money from ATM's.

Tips are the accepted way of saying ‘thank you’ to your local guides and porters. They do not form part of their wages. KE always pays local crews the best rates of pay, no matter what country they are in and any tips they receive are seen as a personal thank you from group members. For our part, we advise local teams that tips are not a duty or a prerequisite but are a bonus and entirely dependent on the service that was given. For your local guide and trek crew we recommend that you give a tip if you feel that their services have met your satisfaction. This is best done by the group as a whole at the end of the trek. As a rough guide we suggest each group member contributes around £50 (in equivalent local currency) to a pool for these tips. Within these guidelines, the exact amount to tip is best decided by the group as a whole.

Your baggage on trek will be carried by pack animals. The packed weight of your trek bag whilst trekking should be no more than 15 kg / 33lbs. It is possible to leave travel clothes or other items not required on the trek at the group hotel in Kathmandu.

All KE clients will receive a FREE KE trek bag.  These have been specially made to stand up to the rigours of adventure travel.  Your KE bag will be posted to you when your trip is guaranteed to run or on receipt of your booking if the trip is already guaranteed.  If you have travelled with us before and already have a KE trek bag you can select an alternative free gift in the booking process.

This holiday involves going to very high altitude. During the course of your trip you will be spending at least one night above 4000 metres and/or trekking to 5000 metres or above. This is not something that you should worry about; the human body is quite capable of adapting to a very wide range of altitudes, but it is important that we follow some simple rules in order to acclimatise successfully. Before coming on this holiday you should read the advice on trekking at high altitude. Unless you have previous experience of trekking above 4000 metres you should consult one of our trekking experts before embarking on this holiday. On this trip we carry a portable altitude chamber (PAC-bag) and/or bottled oxygen for use in emergencies.

The following checklist should help you with your packing. As a general rule, you should always try to keep the weight of your equipment to a minimum.

The packed weight of your trek bag while trekking should be no more than 15 kgs.

You must bring the following items:

  • Hiking boots

  • Socks

  • Trekking trousers

  • Waterproof overtrousers

  • Baselayer shirts

  • Casual shirt and/or T-shirts

  • Fleece jacket or warm jumper

  • Waterproof jacket

  • Smart clothes and shoes (if your trip includes visiting a festival)

  • Sunhat

  • Warm hat

  • Sunglasses

  • Thermal gloves

  • Warm and waterproof gloves or mittens

  • Daypack 30 litres.

  • Headtorch and batteries

  • Sun protection (including total bloc for lips, nose etc.)

  • Water bottles 1 Litre x2

  • Sleeping bag (comfort rating -15°C)*

  • Warm jacket (down)*

  • Washbag and toiletries

  • Antibacterial handwash

  • Small towel

  • Selection of dry bags (to keep trek bag contents dry)

  • Small padlock (to lock your KE trek bag)

  • Basic First Aid Kit including: Antiseptic cream, throat lozenges, diarrhoea treatment (Imodium), altitude (Diamox), painkillers, plasters and blister treatment, and re-hydration salts (Dioralite). Glucose tablets and multi-vitamin tablets are also a good idea.

The following items are optional:

  • Trekking poles

  • Gaiters (highly recommended due to muddy conditions)

  • Trainers or similar

  • Spare laces

  • Baselayer – thermal leggings

  • Shorts

  • Scarf or buff

  • Sleeping bag liner

  • Swimwear (for the hotel pool in Kathmandu)

  • Travel clothes

  • Insect repellant – (75 – 100% DEET)

  • Pen-knife (note: always pack sharp objects in hold baggage)

  • Repair kit – (eg. needle, thread, duct tape)

  • Camera

Notes

*Available for hire/rental through KE Adventure Travel

Please make all requests at least 6 weeks prior to the trip departure date. Please note all hire / rental equipment is issued in Bhutan. Please remember to allow room in your trek bag for these items.

‘Thermarest’ inflatable camping mats are provided

 

For each holiday there is a minimum number of participants required to enable it to go ahead. Once the minimum number is reached, the trip status will change from 'Available' to 'Guaranteed to run'. You can check the trip status for each departure in ‘Dates and Prices’ table. Other than in exceptional circumstances, we will not cancel a trip once it has achieved this guaranteed to run status and so you are free to proceed with your international flight booking and other travel arrangements.

A passport with 6 months remaining validity at the end of your stay is generally required. The information that we provide is for UK passport holders. Please check the relevant embassy or consulate for other nationalities. It is your responsibility to ensure that you have the correct travel documents and visas for your holiday. Visa requirements and charges are subject to change without notice. If you are travelling outside the EU you should have at least 2 blank pages in your passport.

Visa Nepal

All nationalities require a visa. The visa fee is $25 for 15 days, $40 for 30 days, $100 for 90 days and is obtainable on arrival. Payment must be made in cash and USD, GBP or Euros are accepted. You will require 2 passport photos.

For all the regions of Nepal that we visit an additional permit is required. This is included in the holiday price and KE will apply for it, with your full passport details and 1 passport photo (sent by post or emailed). You must supply this to us at least 4 weeks prior to departure.

For the following holidays, in addition to the above, we will also require you to supply a copy of the information page of your passport (sent by post or emailed).

These trips are: Kanchenjunga (KAN), Mustang (MUS), Dolpo (DOL), Manaslu (MAN), Hidden Valleys of Naar and Phu (NAP), Naar to Mustang (NTM), Humla and Limi Circuit Trek (HUM), Naya Kanga and the Ganja La (NKG), Yala Peak and the Ganja La (YPGL), Tent Peak (TPK), Ramdung and Parchemo (RAM), Mera Peak, Island Peak and the Amphu Labsta (MIP), Island Peak Climber (IPC), Peaks and Passes on Nepal (MTR); Mera Peak Climb (MER); and Chulu Far East & the Tilicho La (CTL); Tabsar Peak and the Tsum Valley (TVC), Mukot Peak (MKP).

Transit via India

If you are travelling via India (Delhi or Calcutta) to your destination you may also require a visa for India. This may apply even if you are not leaving the airport unless your baggage has been checked all the way through to your destination. Generally, if you use the same carrier for both legs of your journey, you will not need an India Visa. Please download the detailed information document: Visa PDF India.

Visa Bhutan

All nationalities require a visa. KE will apply for the visa for you. The visa fee is $40 and this will appear on your final invoice. We require copy of the information page of your passport. A colour scan must be emailed or posted to us at the earliest opportunity.

You should contact your doctor or travel clinic to check whether you require any specific vaccinations or other preventive measures. You should be up to date with routine courses and boosters as recommended in the UK e.g. diphtheria-tetanus-polio and measles-mumps-rubella, along with hepatitis A and typhoid. Malarial prophylaxis is not usually required for trips in the mountains, however if you are visiting rural and remote low lying areas then they might be necessary. On holidays to more remote areas you should also have a dentist check up. A good online resource is Travel Health Pro.

The unit of currency in Nepal is the Nepalese Rupee.

The unit of currency in Bhutan is the Bhutanese Ngultrum.

We recommend you check if you require an adaptor for your electrical items at:

http://www.worldstandards.eu/electricity/plugs-and-sockets/

It makes a lot of sense to spend some time before coming on a trekking trip getting some additional exercise. The fitter you are, after all, the more enjoyable you will find the experience. For this trip you need to be aerobically fit and also comfortable with walking up to 7 hours per day or longer on some days. We would suggest that you adopt a weekly exercise regime leading up to your trip. Regular hiking in hill country is the best training but jogging, squash and swimming are also good for developing cardio vascular fitness and stamina. Whatever your chosen method for getting in shape, before departure we suggest that you try to fit in a number of long walks in hilly country.

As a reputable tour operator, KE supports the British Foreign & Commonwealth Offices ‘Know before you go’ campaign to enable British citizens to prepare for their journeys overseas, and we recommend that all KE travellers take a look at the FCO Travel Advice for their chosen destination on the official FCO website: www.fco.gov.uk. North Americans can also check out the U.S. Department of State website: www.travel.state.gov for essential travel advice and tips.

KE treat the safety and security of all clients as the most important aspect of any trip we organise. We would not run any trip that we did not consider reasonably safe.  Should the FCO advise against travel for any reason, we will contact everyone booked to travel to discuss the situation.  We receive regular updates direct from the FCO and are in constant touch with our contacts on the ground.  If you have any questions about government travel advice, please call our office.

In general the climate of Bhutan is colder and damper than one would expect to find in the Himalaya of India or Nepal. The monsoon usually arrives in June, and lasts until mid September, bringing with it the heavy rainfall which is responsible for the lush vegetation which carpets much of Bhutan. March and April, as well as late September through to December are the best months to visit Bhutan. These months outside of the monsoon generally give good weather, with bright, sunny mornings and a moderate build up of cloud in the afternoons. However, mountains do produce their own weather, and rain, snow and even storms cannot be ruled out. Day-time highs of around 20°C / 68°F can be expected at altitudes around 2000 metres with average daytime temperatures at 3000 metres around 10 to 15ºC / 50 – 6ºF. Night-time temperatures at any time can reach or dip below freezing. December departures will be between 5 to 7ºC lower than the above temperature ranges and in December the overnight temperatures at our highest camps can reach –10ºC / 14ºF.

  • Bhutan. A Trekker's guide. Bart Jordans. Cicerone.

  • Bhutan. Lonely Planet Guide.

  • Bhutan. Insight Guides

  • Bhutan: Land of the Thunder Dragon. Owen Edmunds

Bhutan Himalaya. 1:390,000 Nepa Maps (Himalayan Maphouse)

This map gives a general overview of the main trekking routes. Relief is indicated by shading and selected altitudes of peaks and passes. Highways, main roads , minor roads, and trekking routes are marked. Symbols denote campsites, post offices, dzongs, monuments, places of interest etc. The map is indexed for place names, dzongs, passes and peaks. Inside the map cover are printed some geographical notes on the country and driving and trekking times between selected locations.

Extend Your Holiday

Extensions

When booking your holiday, you will be able to 'add an extension option'.

Once we have received your booking we will contact you to discuss additional services required for the extension and to take any additional deposit.

Chitwan Jungle Extension

The jungles of southern Nepal are an interesting counterpoint to trekking in the foothills or the high Himalaya. Tiger Tops Tharu Lodge provides a relaxing and comfortable base for a wildlife safari and cultural village experience. During two days of wildlife viewing in the Chitwan National Park 'buffer zone' - the interface area between visitors and the animals that live at Chitwan – you will be accompanied by expert guides on safaris by jeep by boat and on foot. 



Chitwan Jungle Extension

From $1000 per person

More info

Kathmandu Tour - Nagarkot and Bhaktapur

The Kathmandu Valley contains the cities of Patan, Bhaktapur and Kathmandu itself, all of which were once independent kingdoms. An exploration of the valley’s historic and cultural sights is an excellent way to begin or end your adventure in Nepal. Highlights of this tour includes a very early drive up to Nagarkot on the Kathmandu Valley rim, the perfect place to watch a Himalayan sunrise. This is followed by a tour of the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Bhaktapur, renowned for its temples and traditional buildings. 

 

Kathmandu Tour - Nagarkot and Bhaktapur

From $135 per person

More info

Gokarna Forest Resort Kathmandu

From $138 per room per night

Shanker Hotel

From $100 per room per night

Situated next to the grounds of the former Royal Palace and only a 10-minute walk from the popular Thamel district, this former Rana residence was converted into a hotel in 1964. The original architecture was based on a French palace and the hotel has a grand appearance. Set in a large and beautifully tended garden, it provides a hideaway from the hustle and bustle of city life and is an ideal base from which to explore Kathmandu. All its rooms which are en-suite have been recently refurbished and the hotel facilities include 2 restaurants, 2 bars and a swimming pool where you can also order drinks.

Shangri La

From $119 per room per night Another of Kathmandu’s original ‘luxury’ hotels. While the sophistication of its amenities may be upstaged by Kathmandu’s more modern concrete and glass hotels, the Shangri La maintains an old world charm that cannot be beaten. Located in the diplomatic enclave of Lazimpat, away from the hustle and bustle yet just 10 minutes walk from tourist centre of Thamel, the hotel is set in a pleasant garden and facilities include a pool, tennis court and massage therapist. The hotel has a speciality Indian restaurant and a garden café serving international cuisine as well as a bar.

Dwarikas Hotel

From $279 per room per night Dwarika’s is a heritage hotel modelled on the grandeur of the palaces of the Newar Kings. Consisting of several buildings arranged around a quiet courtyard, the hotel incorporates many original 15th – 17th century features in its architecture from the lifetime collection of its founder. The rooms are in the same Newari style and lavishly luxurious in their appointments. Its location close to Pashupathinath and Bouddhanath is perfect for exploring this side of Kathmandu. There are 3 restaurants serving Nepali, Japanese and international cuisine, a bar, spa and fitness centre, and a swimming pool.

Manor Hotel

From $144 per room per night This 2-storey, 15-room boutique hotel in a pleasant garden setting is very distinctive. With clean modern lines and contemporary furnishings the Manor Hotel has an understated elegance and comfort which is very appealing. Its public areas contrast cool Italian mosaic flooring with warm rich wood panelling, and you can enjoy a high level of service which is friendly and efficient. The hotel has an award winning restaurant and a bar. There is no pool but the hotel has a Wellness centre with yoga and massage. The Manor is located in a quiet residential area close to the Lodhi Gardens.

Recent Reviews & Blog Posts

Good or bad we publish ALL reviews so you can make an inspired and informed choice.