Chulu Far East and the Tilicho La

Climb 6000-metre Chulu Far East and cross the Tilicho La





From $3,780 Land only

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Holiday Overview


  • Views of the Annapurnas and the peaks of Tibet
  • Classic Nepal trekking off the beaten track north of Annapurna
  • Trek out across the spectacular and rarely crossed Tilicho La
  • Free equipment hire (helmet, ice axe, crampons, harness pack)

Beyond the Annapurna Himalaya, amongst a group of peaks known as the Manang Himal, the eminently climbable Chulu Far East (6059m) boasts a superb summit panorama that includes all of the Annapurnas, as well as a host of little-known peaks in Tibet. Our approach to the mountain follows the trek of the classic Annapurna Circuit for 3 days before climbing to a basecamp above the villages of Gyaru and Ngawa. Chulu Far East has been compared in character to Island Peak in the Everest region and offers some really interesting climbing without being too technical. Using a high camp, we make our ascent via straightforward snow-slopes to a sensational pinnacle summit. Descending to Manang in the deep cleft of the Marsyangdi Valley, the second part of this fantastic climbing holiday is our 6-day trek out to Jomsom, via the stunning Tilicho Lake and the relatively rarely-crossed Tilicho La (5260m) - the mountaineers' version of the famous Annapurna Circuit!

Is this holiday for you?

Generally, the underfoot conditions during the trekking element of this holiday are relatively straightforward being mostly on established trails with the exception of the crossing of the Tilicho La where the route will involve scree and/or snow slopes and rocky paths. The climb of Chulu Far East via its south west ridge is not technically difficult but we will encounter a variety of terrain ranging from scree slopes and boulder fields to glaciers where we will need to be roped together and steeper snow slopes where it will be necessary to use fixed lines to safeguard ascents and descents. Full instruction on the use of fixed lines and glacier crossing will be given during the trip and previous experience of these techniques is not a prerequisite. However, all participants should have previous experience of walking with crampons and should be competent in the use of an ice axe and should know how to self-arrest. Clients should be physically fit and prepared for the rigours of climbing above 5500 metres.

Brief Itinerary

View in full
  • Meet at the group hotel in Kathmandu. Transfers from Kathmandu Airport are provided.
  • Drive through the foothills to Dharapani (1860m).
  • Trek via Bagarchap and Koto to Chame (2713m).
  • Trek beside the Marsyangdi river to Lower Pisang (3150m).
  • Trek via Ghyaru and Ngawal to waterfalls above Chulu village (3940m).
  • Acclimatisation day.
  • Trek to Chulu Far East Base Camp (4835m).
  • Acclimatisation day. Skills practice.
  • Trek to a high camp beside a glacial lake (5334m).
  • Acclimatisation day. Skills practice.
  • Climb Chulu Far East peak (6059m). Return to Base Camp (4835m).
  • Trek down to the Marsyangdi Valley and continue on the Annapurna Circuit to Manang (3520m).
  • Trek beside Marsyangdi to Khangsar (3770m).
  • Trek via Thare Gompa (3930) to Tilicho Base Camp (4150m).
  • Trek to the southern end of Tilicho Lake (5000m).
  • Trek across a ridge (5340m) and descend to the north shore of the lake (5000m).
  • Trek across the Tilicho Pass (5260m) to meadows near the Thini Khola (3510m).
  • Trek to Jomsom (2800m).
  • Morning fly to Pokhara. Afternoon at leisure.
  • Fly to Kathmandu. Rest of the day free for sightseeing or relaxing.
  • Departure day. Kathmandu Airport transfers provided.
Sun 01 Nov - Sat 21 Nov Code CTL /03/15/ Adult$3,780 Status Limited Availability Book now
Sun 24 Apr - Sat 14 May Code CTL /01/16/ Adult$4,020 Status Available Book now
Sun 16 Oct - Sat 05 Nov Code CTL /02/16/ Adult$3,860 Status Guaranteed Book now
Sun 27 Nov - Sat 17 Dec Code CTL /03/16/ Adult$3,780 Status Available Book now
Sun 30 Apr - Sat 20 May Code CTL /01/17/ Adult$4,180 Status Available Book now
The LAND ONLY dates and prices are for the itinerary joining in Kathmandu. For clients making their own flight arrangements, Kathmandu Airport is the most convenient for transfers to the group hotel. Please refer to 'Joining Arrangements and Transfers' 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*

* Against Land Only services.

Map & Itinerary

The Route

  • point
  • airport
  • peaks
  • pass
  • trip direction
  • 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. Complimentary airport transfers are provided. KE Land Only package services begin with the evening meal.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Meals d

  • Drive through the foothills to Dharapani (1860m).

    We set off after breakfast for the drive westwards to the start of the trek accompanied by our trek crew. After 3 hours or so, we arrive at the town of Mugling and stop for an early lunch at a roadside restaurant. Beyond Mugling, we turn north on the road which is being slowly driven up the Marsyangdi Valley. Exactly how far along this road we go changes from season to season and even from month to month as new sections are opened to the public. Currently we can drive as far as Dharapani (1943m) and we will make our first camp here beside the Marsyangdi.

    • Accommodation Camping

    • Meals bld

  • Trek via Bagarchap and Koto to Chame (2713m).

    Dharapani is situated at the confluence of the tributary Dudh Khola where the Manaslu Circuit route meets the Annapurna Circuit trail. Here the Marsyangdi Valley turns towards the west, as we pass through the interesting Buddhist village of Bagar Chap. Manaslu is visible behind us and Annapurna 2 is occasionally in sight to the south as we pass through several sections of pine forest with many stone steps. The road building programme is advancing here and we will no doubt encounter sections of rough road or cleared track. There are isolated lodges and hamlets en route to our overnight stopping place at Chame (2713m). This is the administrative centre of this region, with shops, a bank and a school, as well as impressive views of the Annapurnas.

    • Accommodation Camping

    • Meals bld

    • Time 5 - 6 hrs trekking

  • Trek beside the Marsyangdi river to Lower Pisang (3150m).

    We cross the Marsyangdi several times today, in a steep gorge section of the river. The path is sometimes built into the cliff-side on wooden piers. Climbing through a forested ridge beyond Buradhan, we reach a more open valley with some pasture, where we cross the river to its north bank. The view in retrospect here is sensational with the vast sweep of the Paungda Danda – a huge sheet of curving rock stripped bear of vegetation which rises 1500 metres above the river. We walk through a small forest providing some welcome shade and views of the north side of Annapurna 2 before descending past a lake to the valley floor. We then make a final 20 – 30 minute climb to reach the village of Upper Pisang offering superb views of the snowy peaks from Manaslu to Tilicho. We camp here at an altitude of 3300 metres.

    • Accommodation Camping

    • Meals bld

    • Time 4 - 5 hrs trekking

  • Trek via Ghyaru and Ngawal to waterfalls above Chulu village (3940m).

    We leave the Annapurna Circuit trail behind today and climb up above the river on the slopes of Pisang Peak. We begin with a gentle climb across the hillside through scrub pine and Juniper before a steeper section on a zig-zagging trail to the village of Ghyaru (3673m) with its collection of dry-stone-walled medieval houses built one on top of another. Our route continues on a superb contour trail offering tremendous views of the Annapurna range until reaching the extensive fields and houses of Ngawal which is similar though bigger than Ghyaru. At Ngagwal we climb steadily to the small village of Chulu with its flour mill. We now climb up beside the stream for around 45 minutes to cross the khola on a wooden bridge. The steady ascent continues through fir and juniper to a small meadow and herder's hut in view of two splendid waterfalls, which we should reach in around 1 hour from the bridge. Camp (3940m).

    • Accommodation Camping

    • Meals bld

    • Time 4 - 5 hrs trekking

  • Acclimatisation day.

    It is physically possible to climb very high more quickly than we can adapt to new altitudes and now we are close to 4000 metres, it is important to allow sufficient time for acclimatisation. This is known as 'allowing the body to catch up with the legs'. This is a good time to do some laundry or write up diaries, or to explore the area around camp.

    • Accommodation Camping

    • Meals bld

  • Trek to Chulu Far East Base Camp (4835m).

    It is a steep and relentless climb of 2 - 2½ hours to the top of the escarpment which generates the waterfalls which are in view from the camp. As we reach the top of this ridge, Chulu Far East comes into view for the first time. Our base camp for the mountain is set in a wide bowl an easy 15 - 20 minutes walk beyond the ridge top. Base camp is at an elevation of 4835 metres and it is important that we take an easy afternoon resting and drinking lots of fluid as part of the acclimatisation process.

    • Accommodation Camping

    • Meals bld

    • Time 3 hrs trekking

  • Acclimatisation day. Skills practice.

    This is a vital day for acclimatisation prior to heading up to base camp. The order of the day is rest or perhaps a gentle walk. In the afternoon the guides will take us through the simple techniques of roped glacier travel and using fixed lines for safety. This is also a good opportunity to catch up on laundry, diary writing or other trek chores.

    • Accommodation Camping

    • Meals bld

  • Trek to a high camp beside a glacial lake (5334m).

    From our base camp a clear trail climbs up the moraine. Cresting the ridge we encounter a moonscape of glacial debris, the remnants of a receding glacier and we make a high camp beside a small glacial lake. Altitude at High Camp is 5255 metres. Approximately 1½ hours walking. Depending on the group we may take this day as a second acclimatisation day at base camp and make the ascent to high camp on the following day. Your trip leader will decide.

    • Accommodation Camping

    • Meals bld

    • Time 1 - 2 hrs trekking

  • Acclimatisation day. Skills practice.

    We have another day for acclimatisation prior to tackling the ascent of Chulu Far East. This is the time for final checks on equipment and packing ready for tomorrow’s ascent. The guides may use today to go up on the mountain to place fixed lines on the initial part of the ascent.

    • Accommodation Camping

    • Meals bld

  • Climb Chulu Far East peak (6059m). Return to Base Camp (4835m).

    Before dawn the Sherpas will wake us up with a cup of hot tea. We will probably have our breakfast in bed today before getting ready and stepping out into the cold night air. Dawn will be well on its way by the time we set off up the initial slopes to a prominent col which we should reach in about an hour from camp. From the col we cross easy angled snow slopes for around 100 metres of ascent before the route steepens as we negotiate a ‘bulge’ where the slope angle is around 40 - 45º. A second bulge can usually be avoided by taking a traverse out toward the rock of the ridge and then working our way back up easy angled snow to the crest. Now begins the best part of the climb up a narrow fin of a ridge for around 200 metres to a perfect mountain summit. There are tremendous views of all the Annapurnas plus Manaslu, the Ganesh Himal and to the north we can look over the dry barren landscape of Mustang and Tibet. Having had our fill of the scenery we can enjoy some more sensational climbing situations as we reverse our route first to the col and then to high camp. After some rest and refreshment here we continue the descent to base camp where we will no doubt receive a congratulatory welcome from our crew.

    • Accommodation Camping

    • Meals bld

    • Time 10 - 12 hrs trekking / climbing

  • Trek down to the Marsyangdi Valley and continue on the Annapurna Circuit to Manang (3520m).

    A day of downhill starting with the return to Chulu village where we take lunch. From here we continue the descent to reach the main trail coming from Ngagwal which turns and runs parallel to the Marsyangdi before dropping to Mungdi at which point we have rejoined the Annapurna Circuit trail. From Mungdi it is a further 40 minutes to 1 hour up valley to the bustling town of Manang where we make camp and perhaps enjoy a celebratory beer.

    • Accommodation Camping

    • Meals bld

    • Time 7 - 8 hrs trekking

  • Trek beside Marsyangdi to Khangsar (3770m).

    From Manang tthe main Annapurna Circuit trail heads north up a side valley towards the Thorung La. Our route once again leaves the crowds behind and continues along the Marsyangdi Valley through pine forest. It will take us 3 to 4 hours to reach the village of Khangsar (3770m), a collection of stone buildings around a large square.

    • Accommodation Camping

    • Meals bld

    • Time 3 - 4 hrs trekking

  • Trek via Thare Gompa (3930) to Tilicho Base Camp (4150m).

    We have two route possibilities today. The shorter and more direct route involves traversing a long scree slope which can be unstable after prolonged bad weather and so we may make the longer route which involves a climb up to 4950 metres and a subsequent steep descent. For either route we start the day with a short steep climb to a chorten and then more gently to the isolated Thare Gompa (3930m). Beyond here we come to some herders huts where the two trails divide. The choice of route will be made by the trip leader after consultation with locals in Khangsar who will know the conditions of the trail. By either route we arrive at the area known as Tilicho Base Camp (4150m) where we make camp.

    • Accommodation Camping

    • Meals bld

    • Time 3 - 4 hrs trekking

  • Trek to the southern end of Tilicho Lake (5000m).

    Heading up the valley we traverse an old moraine and as we gain height there are tremendous views of Khangsar Kang, Tarke Kang and Gangapurna as well as an impressive retrospective over Manang and towards Pisang. The trail climbs over a couple of crests and is lined by stone ‘fingers’ of upended slabs. At a ridge decorated with a chorten and many prayer flags, we get our first view of Tilicho Lake. This is a truly awesome site. The turquoise waters (if they are not frozen when we arrive) reflect the line of snowy ridges between the 7,000+ metre peaks of Tilicho and Khangsar Kang. This is what Herzog termed ‘the Great Barrier’ when he came this way looking for a route to Annapurna. The glaciers of these peaks come right down to the lake ending in vertical ice walls which sometimes calve into the waters. From this viewpoint we traverse the hillside and then descend to a campsite beside the lake at around 5000m.

    • Accommodation Camping

    • Meals bld

    • Time 3 - 5 hrs trekking

  • Trek across a ridge (5340m) and descend to the north shore of the lake (5000m).

    As the crow flies it is little more than 2½ miles (4km) from our camp at the southern end of Tilicho Lake to our next at the northern end. However there is no easy route around the lake shore. To the west the way is barred by glaciers while on the eastern shore, a large vertical cliff drops right into the lake. To reach the north shore we must first ascend the bounding ridge to the east of the lake. In fact we have a total of 3 ascent and 2 descents to negotiate the ridges behind the cliff with our highest point at 5340m. Finally we can return to the lake shore following a small tributary stream.

    • Accommodation Camping

    • Meals bld

    • Time 5 hrs trekking

  • Trek across the Tilicho Pass (5260m) to meadows near the Thini Khola (3510m).

    We will use the so called ‘New Tilicho Pass’ to cross the Muktinath Himal rather than the more well known Mesokantho La. Although the new pass is a little higher in elevation at 5260 metres it is less steep and usually holds less snow than the Mesokantho. To reach this pass we first retrace our steps a little way along the tributary stream and then head north-west climbing towards a ridge crest. There are fantastic views back over the lake as we climb to the summit of the pass and from the top we have an extensive panorama looking back to the Chulus and towards Mustang and the broad weep of the Tibetan Plateau, as well as the nearby giants of Tilicho and the peaks of Nilgiri. From the summit of the pass we follow a mostly good path which descends to the valley of the Langpoghyung Khola and then follows this river to a grazing area in the valley where we make camp (3510m).

    • Accommodation Camping

    • Meals bld

    • Time 8 - 10 hrs trekking

  • Trek to Jomsom (2800m).

    The hard work over, we can enjoy our last morning of trekking, dropping down the Thini Khola to the pretty village of Thini with its narrow alleyways and decorated gompa surrounded by an extensive network of terraced barley fields. We are now in the wide Kali Gandaki Valley, reputedly the deepest in the world lying as it does between the 8,000 metre peaks of Dhaulagiri and Annapurna 1. Some 45 minutes below Thini we join the Annapurna Circuit trail for the final time at the busy airport town of Jomsom. Our brief encounters with mainstream trekking will be quite a culture shock for us after seeing only a few other trekkers and away from the tea-houses, shops and bars of the circuit. We will no doubt make use of these facilities on our last night on trek. We will check into a lodge in Jomsom for a well-earned shower and soft bed. We will also say goodbye to our porters and crew at Jomsom and perhaps enjoy a farewell party with them.

    • Accommodation Lodge

    • Meals bld

    • Time 5 - 6 hrs trekking

  • Morning fly to Pokhara. Afternoon at leisure.

    We take an early morning flight from the small airstrip in Jomsom. A memorable flight of 40 minutes takes us to Nepal’s second city of Pokhara located close to the serene and beautiful lake of Phewa Tal. Here we check into our hotel on ‘Lakeside’ an area of cafes, bars, shops and various facilities required by the visitor to Nepal. Pokhara is a much more tranquil place than Kathmandu and the perfect spot to wind down after our sensational trek and climb. Tonight we will go out to celebrate with dinner in one of Lakeside’s popular restaurants.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Meals bld

  • Fly to Kathmandu. Rest of the day free for sightseeing or relaxing.

    We begin the day with another spectacular flight along the chain of the Himalaya to Kathmandu. After checking into our hotel the rest of the day is free. There is an optional complimentary guided sightseeing tour of the city’s main attractions or alternatively, you may prefer to do your own thing, especially if you have visited Kathmandu before. One of the attractions of any visit to Nepal is the chance to walk the streets of Kathmandu, which present a fascinating mosaic of shops, cafes and restaurants, food markets and street vendors, as well as a bewildering array of colourful temples and shrines of both the Buddhist and Hindu religions. Although this is a free day in Kathmandu it is also a necessary contingency in case of delays to the flight from Jomsom.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Meals bld

  • Departure day. Kathmandu Airport transfers 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 in Nepal. Why not pre-book a simple day-tour in the Kathmandu Valley, or a multi-day excursion to one of the important wildlife reserves at Chitwan or Bardia. Extension packages are also available to include a visit to neighbouring Tibet or Bhutan. Contact our office for details.

    • Meals b

Holiday Information

  • A KE climbing leader
  • Sherpa mountain guides
  • Client to guide ratio of 3:1 on the climb
  • Kathmandu Airport transfers
  • Internal flights and all land transport involved in the itinerary
  • All accommodation as described in the trip dossier
  • All meals throughout the holiday
  • Full trekking service inc food and equipment (excluding personal equipment)
  • Guided sightseeing tour of Kathmandu

  • Travel insurance
  • Nepalese Visa
  • Tips for porters and other trek staff
  • Miscellaneous expenses - drinks and souvenirs etc.

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.

All clients travelling to Kathmandu will be met at the airport by a KE representative who will arrange the transfer to the group hotel. Clients MUST provide the KE office with full details of their flights and should let us know if Kathmandu Airport transfers are not required. Hotel contact details and an emergency number will be provided with your booking confirmation.

A typical trekking day in Nepal begins shortly after first light when 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 porters given their loads. We will generally reach our lunch stop after 3 or 4 hours walking. The cook crew, having overtaken us on the trail, will already have the lunch preparations well under way. Lunch usually takes an hour or two and this is a great time for relaxing, reading and sitting in the sun. It is usual for the afternoon’s walk to be shorter than the morning session. On arrival at camp, the Sherpas 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.

During this trip the group will spend 2 nights in Kathmandu and 1 night in Pokhara at centrally-located tourist-class hotels. Whilst on trek there are 16 nights camping and 1 night in a standard lodge in Jomsom. All accommodation is 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 3 hotel nights single rooms are available for a supplementary cost. Single rooms are not available for the night in a lodge at Jomsom. Additional hotel nights in Kathmandu are also available. 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

The food served during the trek is a mixture of local and international, prepared from ingredients mostly locally sourced and cooked for us by highly trained trek cooks. The emphasis is on providing a high-carbohydrate and largely vegetarian diet, which we have found to be easily digestible at high altitude. In Kathmandu and Pokhara we take our meals at the hotel or in one of the city’s excellent restaurants.

All meals are included in the holiday price from dinner on day 1 to breakfast on day 21.

Approximately £200 (or equivalent in US dollars, Euros etc) changed into local currency, should be allowed for miscellaneous expenses including approximately £60 - 75 for tips to your local staff. It is not necessary to obtain local currency prior to departure. Sterling, US Dollars and Euros are equally acceptable for exchange in Nepal. We recommend that you carry your travel money in the form of cash, since you will exchange the majority of this on the day of your arrival in Kathmandu. If you prefer not to carry all of your spending money in cash, it is possible to withdraw money from ATMs in Kathmandu and Pokhara using your debit or credit card. During the trek it is possible to buy snacks, chocolate, soft drinks and beer on several days. Please be aware that since everything has to be carried up from the nearest road, these items become more expensive as you gain altitude.

Access to the high and remote areas of the Himalaya where our treks start is often only possible using internal flights. The changeable nature of mountain weather makes flying conditions complex. In addition, the Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal does not operate to the same standards as those of western nations and all airlines in Nepal appear on the European Commission’s list of airlines that are banned from flying into EU member states. Flying in Nepal is an acknowledged risk, and the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office travel advice provides further details which you can read on their website at: KE is mindful of its duty of care to clients travelling with us in Nepal and we were stakeholders in an independent air audit of Nepal airlines undertaken by UK tour operators during 2013. KE uses only three airlines in Nepal which were approved by this audit as safe carriers. These airlines are: Yeti Airlines, Tara Air and Buddha Air. We continue to cooperate with other tour operators to monitor aviation safety in Nepal and will ensure we remain a stakeholder in any further air safety audits. While we have taken appropriate action to try to minimise the risks of flying in Nepal, you should be aware that flying in mountainous terrain is not without any risk.

Please note that poor weather can cause delays on internal flights. If at the start of your holiday internal flights are cancelled for the day, you will spend an extra night near the airport and this may be at a hotel other than the group hotel. On the majority of trips there is enough flexibility in the trekking itinerary to make up 1 or possibly 2 lost days, but alternative arrangements must be made if internal flights are cancelled for a subsequent day. For trips that end with an internal flight out of the mountains with no alternative road access, we have included 2 nights in Kathmandu as a contingency against delay. Helicopters can sometimes fly when the scheduled fixed wing aircraft cannot. If your group is offered the opportunity to use a chartered helicopter, either flying up from or back to Kathmandu, the cost will be shared between those choosing to take this option. In the extremely unlikely event that flight cancellations cause you to miss your homeward international flight, KE will render all assistance, but cannot be held liable for any extra costs incurred. We advise you to take out suitable insurance and to keep your receipts, as you may subsequently be able to make a claim.

The group will be led by a KE climbing leader who will be assisted by a local guide and during the climb, by one or more climbing Sherpas to maintain a client guide ratio of 3:1. During the trek the group will be supported by a full trek crew including a cook, kitchen and camp staff, and a team of porters to carry group and personal equipment.

Tipping is the accepted way of saying ‘thank you’ for good service. Tips do not form part of the wages of your porters and trek crew but they are very much appreciated. It is important to remember that tipping is voluntary and should be dependent on good service. Normally the tips are given at the end of the trek and this is best done as a group. Your trek leader will give you help and advice on this. Most groups will give the tips with a bit of ceremony (or sometimes a party) on the last evening, to mark the end of the trip. As a guide, we recommend that each group member contributes around £60 - 75 (in rupee equivalent) to these tips. At the end of a trek many people also like to donate various items of their equipment to the porters and trek staff who work so hard to make the trip a success. Boots, gloves, hats, scarves and even socks (clean of course) are always warmly received by the porters. Technical clothing and equipment are highly prized by the local guides and camp crews. If you think you would like to donate equipment at the end of your trip, your trek leader will make arrangements for a fair distribution among the trek crew.

Your baggage on trek will be carried by porters or by baggage animals. The packed weight of your trek bag whilst trekking should be no more than 15kg. For the flight from Jomsom to Pokhara, the normal allowance for hold baggage AND hand baggage combined is 15 kg. We do recognise that it is difficult on a climbing holiday to keep your total baggage below 15kg and we have arranged a special allowance for these trips of 15kg hold baggage and 5kg cabin baggage. You may also wish to consider wearing your heavy mountaineering boots and any heavier clothing on this flight. Please be aware that you will have to pay any excess personal baggage charges at check-in and that excess baggage may have to be flown separately. It is possible to leave clothes or other items not required on trek at the group hotel.

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 on our website which can be viewed via the link below. 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.

All nationalities need a valid passport and a current Nepalese Visa for entry into Nepal. The easiest way to get your Nepal visa is on arrival at Kathmandu Airport. Visa fees must be paid in cash. The most convenient currency to purchase Nepalese visas is US dollars, but GB pounds and Euros are also accepted. The charges for the visa depend on your length of stay (please see fee information below). Two passport photos are also needed. Photographs can be obtained at the airport but this may be time-consuming.

Nepal visa fees (Multiple Entry). 15 days: US$25, 30 days: US$40, 90 days: US$100

Note that visa fees can change without warning and we advise that you bring extra cash as a contingency.

Please note that if you are travelling to Nepal via Delhi 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 (into Delhi and from Delhi to Kathmandu), you will not need an India Visa. Please note that the responsibility for ensuring you have the necessary visas, travel permits etc, for your chosen route of travel to the joining point, lies entirely with you. We are always happy to give advice on these requirements if you contact us.

Note that if you book a UK flight-inclusive package with KE using Jet Airways or Air India via Delhi, you will not require an India visa.

Important Notes:

For all regions of Nepal you are now required to have a permit to trek / bike. To apply for this we must have your full passport details before your departure. We recommend you also take 4 passport photographs with you to Nepal.

We require additional items for following trips:

Annapurna trips (ANS, ASL, ACL, APL, AEL, ANL, ANC, UAT), Dhaulagiri via the French Pass (DLG), and Royal Trek and Chitwan (RTC).

1 passport photograph to be sent / emailed to the KE office at least 4 weeks prior to departure.

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).

1 passport photograph plus 1 copy of the information page of your passport to be sent / emailed to the KE office at least 4 weeks prior to departure.

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. Please make sure you have read the section on baggage allowance in the trip notes. It is possible to leave clothes or other items not required on trek at the group hotel.

You must bring the following items:

  • Hiking boots
  • Mountaineering boots - see ‘Mountaineering Equipment’
  • Snow gaiters
  • Socks
  • Trekking trousers / pants
  • Windproof and waterproof overtrousers / rain-pants
  • Underwear
  • Long johns (thermal underwear)
  • Shorts
  • Thermal baselayer shirts (2 short sleeve, 2 long sleeve)
  • T-shirts or similar
  • Fleece jacket or warm jumper/sweater
  • Windproof and waterproof jacket with hood
  • Warm jacket (down)*
  • Sunhat
  • Warm hat and thermal balaclava
  • Eyewear - Sunglasses
  • Thermal lightweight gloves (for camp, trekking use)
  • Warm insulated gloves or mittens (for summit day)
  • Spare emergency mittens
  • Daypack minimum 40 litres / 2500 cu in
  • Headtorch/Headlamp with spare bulb and batteries
  • Sun protection (including total bloc for lips, nose etc.)
  • Water bottles 1 Litre (1 quart) x2
  • Selection of dry bags (to keep trek bag contents dry)
  • 5 season sleeping bag*
  • Thermarest or similar sleeping mat*
  • Washbag and toiletries
  • Antibacterial handwash
  • Small Towel
  • Small padlock (to lock trek bag)
  • Basic First Aid Kit including: Broad spectrum antibiotic, antiseptic cream, throat lozenges, diarrhoea treatment (Imodium), altitude (Diamox), painkillers, plasters (band-aids) and blister treatment, and re-hydration salts (Dioralite).

Mountaineering Equipment:

  • Mountaineering double boots - see below
  • Ice axe *
  • Crampons (preferably with ‘step-in’ bindings)*
  • Mountaineering or climbing harness*
  • Karabiners (2 x screwgate)*
  • ‘Figure of 8’ descender (rappelling device) *
  • Climbing helmet*
  • Sling (120cm. / 3ft.)*
  • Prussik loops X 2 (5m. / 16ft. of 6mm cord makes 2)*

The following items are optional:

  • Travel clothes
  • Trainers / sneakers or similar for camp use
  • Fleece trousers
  • Trekking poles
  • Sleeping bag liner
  • Nailbrush
  • Pee bottle
    Spare laces
  • Swimwear (for the hotel pool in Kathmandu)
  • Camera, film, batteries
  • Penknife (remember to pack all sharp objects in hold baggage)


  • The Nepalese are still traditional and conservative in the way they dress. Therefore to avoid embarrassment on both sides we recommend that you respect this and do not wear revealing clothing or sleeveless tops while visiting Nepal. Shorts are acceptable, but they should reach to just above the knee and be modest and for women it is preferable to wear trousers or a long skirt.

Equipment hire: Items marked * can be hired / rented through KE Adventure Travel. Please make all requests at least 6 weeks prior to the trip departure date. All equipment is issued in Kathmandu. Please remember to allow room in your trek bag for these items (note that on trek your mountaineering equipment and plastic boots will be carried separately in communal equipment bags).

  • Mountaineering boots required for this trip: Climbing at altitudes of up to 6500 metres, the temperatures can be very cold (as low as minus 30 degrees centigrade). Standard leather mountaineering boots are really not suitable for these cold, high altitude conditions. Plastic boots with insulated inners (eg. Scarpa Vega HA) and also the new generation of synthetic double boots (eg. La Sportiva Spantik, Boreal G1 light), are the best to keep your feet warm at altitude in these extremely low temperatures.  Also, you can sleep in the removable inner boots to ensure warm toes in the morning! These boots are also designed to take step-in crampons, quickly and efficiently. This combination of plastic or double synthetic boots and step-in crampons is by far the most sensible option when considering a trekking peak climb. You must make sure that you are suitably equipped for these extremely low temperatures.

Needle Sports (specialist mountaineering equipment shop)

  • Needle Sports is the English Lake District's foremost specialist climbing shop supplying mountaineering, rock, ice, alpine and expedition equipment worldwide. Internationally recognised as among the very best of the UK's top technical climbing gear retailers. They have a good range of equipment appropriate for this trip and offer knowledgeable advice both on their website and in store.
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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 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 copy (sent or emailed). You must supply this to us at least 4 weeks prior to departure.

For certain trips in additional to the above we also require a copy of the information page of your passport.

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.

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

It makes a lot of sense to spend some time before coming on a trekking or climbing trip getting some additional exercise. The fitter you are, after all, the more enjoyable you will find the experience. This is a demanding trek and you need to be aerobically fit and comfortable with walking up to 8 or 9 hours each day on a variety of terrain. The best preparation for this trip is regular hiking in mountain or hill country. If this is not possible, we suggest that you adopt a weekly exercise regime and gradually increase your work rate as you get nearer to departure. Jogging, squash and swimming are all good for developing better stamina. Whatever your preparation, before departure, we suggest that you try to fit in a number of long walks in hilly country. For this trip it is also essential that you have previous experience of walking on moderately angled snow slopes wearing crampons, and are comfortable with a degree of exposure while secured on fixed lines. No previous technical mountaineering experience is required and clients will be instructed in the basic techniques of glacier walking and use of fixed ropes prior to the ascent. If you do not have previous experience of walking with crampons we suggest you attend a Snow Skills course prior to booking on the trip.

You should contact your GP 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.

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: North Americans can also check out the U.S. Department of State website: 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.

October to November and March to May are the best times for trekking in Nepal. These months either side of the summer monsoon season are neither too hot in the foothills nor too cold in the higher elevations. Pre-monsoon is the time to see the colourful blooms of the rhododendron at lower elevations. The post-monsoon months usually offer the clearest skies and the most settled weather. At either of these periods you will encounter a wide range of daytime temperatures during your trip from approximately 25ºC in Kathmandu to approximately 14ºC at 3000 metres, and approximately 3ºC at 5000m. The ‘real feel’ temperature in the middle of the day even high on Chulu Far East may be much warmer than this. At night in the rarefied air the temperatures plummet. You can expect to experience overnight temperatures below freezing once above approximately 4200 metres and at our highest camps night time temperatures may drop as low as –15ºC. Extended periods of rain or snow are very unlikely outside of the monsoon period but short lived storms can and do occur.

Trekking and Climbing in Nepal. Steve Razzetti. New Holland. Annapurna, a trekkers guide – Kev Reynolds, Cicerone. The Trekkers Handbook. Tom Gilchrist. Trekking in Nepal. Stephen Bezruchka. Trekking in the Nepal Himalaya. Stan Armington. Trekking in Nepal, West Tibet and Bhutan. Hugh Swift. Kathmandu and the Kingdom of Nepal. Prakash Raj. Insight Guide to Nepal. Adventure Treks Nepal. Bill O’Connor

Chulus - Nepa Maps

A very good map at a useful 1:50,000 scale and contour intervals of 40 metres. The topography is further represented by relief shading and and colouring and graphics to indicate different types of terrain. The map covers all the ground of this trek from Pisang to Jomsom. Routes on all the Chulus including Far East are indicated as are those over the two passs between Tilicho and the Kali Gandakhi valley.

Extend Your Holiday

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. On two full days of wildlife viewing in the 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, boat, on foot and by elephant back.

Chitwan Jungle Tharu Lodge Extension

From $980 per person

More info

Tiger Mountain Resort Pokhara

Tiger Mountain Pokhara Lodge sets the standard for comfortable and luxurious mountain lodge accommodation with its relaxed atmosphere, tranquil setting, eco-tourism and conservation ethos. Located on a spectacular hilltop ridge, it has panoramic views of ‘Fishtail Mountain and Himalayan giants, Dhaulagiri, Annapurna and Manaslu. It has won several prestigious awards including the PATA Heritage and Culture Gold Award and the Conde Nast Traveler magazine Ecotourism Award.

Tiger Mountain Pokhara Lodge (join Pokhara)

From $700 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 the day's tour include the ancient city of Bhaktapur, a UNESCO World Heritage Site renowned for it’s temples and traditional buildings, and Nagarkot on the Kathmandu Valley rim, the perfect place to watch a Himalayan sunrise.

Kathmandu Valley Tour - Nargakot and Bhaktapur

From $125 per person

More info

Malla Hotel

From $100 per room per night

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.

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