Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek - 23 Days

(5.0)3 reviews
Know before you go
  • Duration 23 Days
  • Difficulty Level Strenuous
  • Trip Start and End Kathmandu to Kathmandu
  • Best Season Mar-May and Sept-Nov
  • Trip Area Kanchenjunga
  • Maximum Altitude 5143m.|16873ft.

Highlights

  • Explore the hidden corners of Mt. Kanchenjunga, the third highest mountain in the world
  • Trek in a restricted area in Nepal
  • A magical journey that takes you back in time and presents you with an adventurous trip full of the breathtaking mountain panorama
  • Walk in the Kanchenjunga Conservation Area abundant in flora & fauna
  • Trodden less-crowded trail, lush forests, stunning waterfalls, rivers, beautiful villages, and welcoming villagers
  • Cross passes, thrilling suspension bridges, and meadows
  • Reach the north base camp of Mt. Kanchenjunga
  • Come across the Tibetan Buddhist lifestyle of the locals and visit ancient monasteries along the trail

Unspoiled views, trodden trails, barely any travelers on the trekking route, and abundant flora & fauna. This is the Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek.

 

Kanchenjunga is a well-protected hidden treasure in Nepal located in the far eastern part of the country and borders Sikkim, India. Not many travelers know about the adventurous trekking route of the Kanchenjunga Circuit, and on top of that, the special permits & challenging trails keep most of the trekkers away from Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek. 

Kanchenjunga Trek explores around the third highest mountain in the world, Mt. Kanchenjunga (8,586 m). Our Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek itinerary leads you to the north base camp of Mt. Kanchenjunga. Check out our Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek map for information about the trial. We can also design a custom trekking itinerary to Kanchenjunga South Base Camp or both base camps. 

Just to let you know, Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek is also known as Kanchenjunga Base Camp Trek. It is not an easy trek and demands previous trekking experience. One cannot do Kanchenjunga Base Camp Trek solo.

Unlike the famous Annapurna Circuit Trek and Manaslu Circuit trek, Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek is even more on the difficult and remote side. If you are in quest of something extraordinary and a magical venture in the Himalayas, then Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek Nepal is the one for you. The trail crosses lush forests, meadows, rivers, waterfalls, and beautiful villages. 

You can get in touch with us to book Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek 2022. We have also opened our early booking for Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek 2023 spring & autumn. 

Views during the Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek

You will get to see stunning views of Yalung Glaciers. The constant company of the heart-warming landscape and tranquility of the Kanchenjunga region will make you feel back in your forgotten home. Unchanged by the change of time, Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek will take you back in time.

The entire Kanchenjunga region is protected under the Kanchenjunga Conservation Area. In Nepal, it is a restricted area. Trekkers have to get a special permit from the Nepal government to trek to Kanchenjunga. The trail is rich in flora & fauna. If luck is in your favor, you may come across some rare wildlife like Himalayan black bear, musk deer, snow-leopard, red panda, etc. Likewise, many endangered species of birds are seen along the way. 

The Kanchenjunga Base Camp Trek gets even more fascinating when you begin to hear stories about The Yeti from the locals. Yes, the snow monster or snowman, whatever you refer to it, is believed to be found in this part of the Himalayas.  

Then comes the breathtaking views of the Himalayan mountains. Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek exclusively presents some of the most intriguing panoramas of the mountains like Tent Peak (5,663 m/18,684 ft), Mt. Kambachen (7,902 m/25,925 ft), Mt. Janu (7,710 m/25,300 ft), etc, including the eight-thousanders like Mt. Everest (8,849 m/29,032 ft), Mt. Makalu (8,463 m/27,765 ft) and Mt. Lhotse (8,516 m/27,940 ft).

What makes Nepal Nirvana Trails unique?

Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek is not like other treks in the Himalayas. To get the best out of the journey, you have to trek with a native who well understands the region and the locals. Trekking with us will allow you to trek with an experienced native trek guide. Our Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek itinerary is well designed and can be customized as per your needs.

All of our policies related to treks and tours in Nepal are transparent and involve no hidden clause/charges. We are a team of very friendly and flexible travelers who love to explore and share journeys with like-minded people. Our two decades of expertise in the field make us your best trekking partner for Kanchenjunga Circuit Trekking. 

Check out these famous trekking packages- Everest Base Camp Trek, Annapurna Base Camp Trek, Mardi Himal Trek, and Nar Phu Valley trek.

Itinerary

Day to Day Details

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The airport representative of NNT will meet you at the Tribhuvan International Airport and transfer you to the hotel in a private vehicle.

You can stroll on the road of Thamel in the evening and have good rest at the hotel.

  • 1,400m.|4,592ft.

Today, you will meet your trekking guide, and we will brief you about the trek. We will check the trekking equipment that you have and suggest if you need to buy or rent it, it is available in the Trekking shops in Thamel.

You can spend the rest of the day visiting UNESCO World Heritage sites around Kathmandu.

  • 1,400m.|4,592ft.

Flight Duration: 45 to 50 minutes

Today, we will fly from Kathmandu (TIA) to Bhadrapur (Chandragadhi Airport) on a domestic flight of about 45 to 50 minutes.
We will take a local jeep and drive to Ilam. You can encounter many local tourists as Ilam is a popular destination with tea gardens. We will stay overnight at Ilam.

  • Hotel
  • Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • 800m.|2624ft.

Drive Duration: 8 - 9 hours

We drive via Mechi Highway from Ilam towards Taplejung. We will enjoy the drive viewing the tea cultivations during the way toward Phidim, and the way up to Suketar, from where the trek to Kanchenjunga begins. We stay overnight at Suketar, Taplejung.

  • Tea House
  • Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • 1820m.|5971ft.

Trek Duration: 6 to 7 hours

Today, we begin our trek to Kanchanjunga. After morning breakfast in Suketar, our trekking starts with a descending walk to Mitlung. We will cross the Tamur River and walk, following the bank of Tamur river towards Mitlung.

From Mitlung, we start trekking to the ascending and descending trails passing through Sinwa village and Tawa. On continuing through the trek route and walking along the bank of Chirwa Khola, we arrive at Chiruwa.

  • Tea House
  • Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • 1270m.|4166ft.

Trek Duration: 5 to 6 hours

We will start our trek from Chiruwa village to Lelep after breakfast. There is a Kanchanjunga National Park checkpoint on the way through the trails. We have our permit checked and move ahead to reach our destination for the day, Lelep.

  • Tea House
  • Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • 1750m.|5741ft.

Trek Duration: 5 - 6 hours

We will walk and cross a suspension bridge across the Ghunsa Khola and Tamur rivers. On walking further, we will pass across Sakathum, Ghaiyabari, Solima, finally arriving at Amjillosa, a Tibetan settlement.

  • Tea House
  • Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • 2308m.|7572ft.

Trek Duration: 5 hours

We move forward to Gyabla from Amjilosa after having breakfast. We continue to move in our path through a dense forest and trail without a human settlement. After the climb uphill, we get to view majestic views of the mountains and several waterfalls on the way. We slowly make our way and reach Gyabla village.

  • Tea House
  • Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • 2730m.|8956ft.

Trek Duration: 5 hours

The steep descent and walk through the forests lead us to the Pholey village, and upon the continuation of the trek, we will reach Ghunsa village.

  • Tea House
  • Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • 3595m.|11974ft.

Today we have an acclimatization day. Even though we will not trek much, we will hike up to the lush forest and explore the monastery to warm up our bodies and return to the Ghunsa village.

  • Tea House
  • Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Trek Duration: 5 - 6 hours

We have a gradual ascent through a juniper forest, and we may also spot blue sheep and snow leopard. The trail passes through the landslide-prone areas. We see the spectacular view of Mt. Jannu and encounter the green glacier valleys and finally reach Khambachen village.

  • Tea House
  • Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • 4050m.|13287ft.

Trek Duration: 4 - 5 hours

We move ahead to the trail of the Kanchenjunga glacier. There is no settlement in this pathway. We move through the Ramtang and come across the Ramtang Monastery. We are on the difficult trek, now at the junction of the Lhonak and Kanchenjunga glaciers.

There is a tiny settlement in Lhonak with a few teahouses.

  • Tea House
  • Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • 4780m.|15682ft.

Trek Duration: 6 hours

Today, we will hike to the north base camp of Mt. Kanchenjunga, which is also known as Pang Pema. We will climb gradually following the moraines through the trail and reach Kanchenjunga Base Camp. The prayer flags around and the mesmerizing towering peak of Kanchenjunga is the reward after the trek. We will return to Lhonak for an overnight stay.

  • Tea House
  • Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • 5143m.|16873ft.

Trek Duration: 7 hours

Rejoicing the views of the Himalayas and leaving behind the Kanchenjunga Base Camp, we return to Lhonak. Retracing the way through Lhonak and Khambachen, we arrive at Ghunsa.

  • Tea House
  • Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • 3595m.|11974ft.

Trek Duration: 8 hours

We arrive at Sele Le, leaving the trail to Gyabla. There is a chance to see the snow leopards as we pass through the dense forest. There are isolated human settlements with few teahouses.

  • Tea House
  • Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • 4480m.|14698ft.

Trek Duration: 8 hours

We will trek to the high-altitude passes, Sinion La (4646m.|15242ft.), then Mirgin La (4470m.|14665ft.). Everest and Makalu add to the We will see the spectacular panoramic view of Mt. Jannu, Everest, Makalu, Baruntse, Chamlang, and Kangchenjunga during our climb. We descend to Tseram and stay overnight over there.

  • Tea House
  • Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • 3870m.|12696ft.

Trek Duration: 5 hours

Today, we lead forward through the Yalung glacier getting higher and close to the vistas. After lunch at Ramche, we head towards the Kanchenjunga South Base Camp. We stay overnight at Ramche.

  • Tea House
  • Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • 4580m.|15026ft.

Trek Duration: 6 - 7 hours

Our trek starts downhill and ends at Tortong with the enchanting views of the Himalayas en-route. We will stay overnight at Tortong.

  • Tea House
  • Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • 2995m.|9826ft.

Trek Duration: 7 - 8 hours

Ascending and descending the steep slopes, exploring the abundant flora and fauna of the forests, we reach Yamphudin.

  • Tea House
  • Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • 2080m.|6824ft.

Trek Duration: 5 - 6 hours

After having breakfast in Yamphudi, we walk exploring beautiful landscapes through the trails, and finally, we will reach our destination for the day, Khebang.

  • Tea House
  • Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • 1915m.|6282ft.

Trek Duration: 5 - 6 hours

Today is the last day of our trekking. We hike through the villages and reach Hapu Khola.

  • Tea House
  • Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Trek Duration: 9 - 10 hours

We reach Birtamod in about 9 to 10 hours, with the twists and turns roadways.

  • Hotel
  • Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • 1600m.|5249ft.

Flight Duration: 40 to 45 minutes

We will have a 40 to 45 minutes flight from Bhadrapur to Kathmandu. We will escort you to your hotel and have a farewell dinner with you in the evening.

You are free to start your next destination or return to your home country.

  • Breakfast and Farewell Dinner
  • 1,400m.|4,592ft.

Want to customize your trip? Share your holiday plans. Our travel experts create an awesome trip for a lifetime experience holiday.

Route Map

Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek - 23 Days map

What's Included

  • Airport Pickup and drop service during both international and domestic flight
  • All necessary trekking permits 
  • All accommodation during the trek
  • Three meals a day during the trek and Tea Coffee
  • Fresh fruit each day if and when available
  • Government Licensed and first aid trained trekking guide
  • Salary, food, equipment, and insurance of the trekking guide
  • Flight of Kathamandu - Bhadrapur, and Bhadrapur - Kathmandu
  • Bhadrapur - Ilam - Taplejung and Hapu Khola - Birtamod by local jeep/bus sharing
  • First aid kit with basic medication
  • Sleeping bag / Down Jacket if needed (it is refundable)
  • Nepal Nirvana Duffle Bag, T-shirt, Trekking Map, and Water Purifications Drop / Tablet
  • Farewell dinner in a fine Restaurant
  • Official expense, all local and government tax and vat.

 

What's Excluded

  • International flight tickets and Nepal entry visa
  • Travel and health Insurance which cover emergency Rescues and evacuations
  • During trekking time personal expenses, snacks, Beer, coke, juice, water, WI-FI, etc.
  • Hotel and Food in Kathmandu 
  • One Porter costs $530 (Optional if you require a porter) 
  • Private Jeep $490 (Optional)
  • Sightseeing fees ( temples, monasteries)
  • Tips for treks guide and porter(it is expected)

Upcoming Departures

    
Start DateSundayMarch 05, 2023End DateMondayMarch 27, 2023PriceAvailableUS $1330
Start DateSundayMarch 12, 2023End DateMondayApril 03, 2023PriceAvailableUS $1330
Start DateSundayMarch 19, 2023End DateMondayApril 10, 2023PriceAvailableUS $1330
Start DateSundayMarch 26, 2023End DateMondayApril 17, 2023PriceAvailableUS $1330

Useful Info

Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek Difficulty

Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek is one of the wild and most strenuous treks in Nepal. It is a relatively long trek with many hurdles like passes, rivers, gorges, glaciers, rocky hills, many steep ascents & descents, etc.  

There are multiple days with over 8 hours of walk. The region is very remote, so you cannot get any modern comforts, and the trail is quite empty. The thin air at high altitude exhausts sooner than you may think and add up to the difficulty. 

Similarly, acute mountain sickness (AMS) or also referred to as altitude sickness, is something you constantly have to be careful about. One mistake, and you may begin to see the early symptoms of altitude sickness (breathing problem, headache, nausea, loss of appetite).

Physical Fitness & Preparations for the Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek

In a single day of walking, there will be many ascends & descends. The trail follows a rugged path with long walking hours. With the increase in elevation, the air gets thinner, and the cold climate may affect you. If you are not physically fit, then Kanchenjunga Circuit Trekking can become a nightmare for you. 

The trek is no doubt very rewarding, but it comes at the cost of difficult walking and endurance. Not only physical endurance but mental too. It's a tea house trek with no modern facility at all. The services will be the bare minimum, and you will be finding yourself paying for the little things like hot shower, internet, charging, drinking water, etc. 

The best way to prepare for Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek Nepal is by doing physical training and if possible, a few small hikes & short treks. For exercise, work on cardio exercises, like jogging, running, long walks, cycling, climbing stairs, and swimming. Likewise, you can focus on building your muscles and core body strength.

Kanchenjunga Circuit Trekking Best Time

The Himalayas have two trekking seasons with stable weather and moderate climate - spring (March to May and autumn (September to November). Now depending upon your needs, you can trek to Kanchenjunga Circuit in either of these two seasons. 

If you want to enjoy the picture-perfect kind of route (bloomed with hundreds of colorful flowers and greeneries beneath white-snow capped mountains & foothills), spring is the ideal option. Likewise, if you would love to come across Nepalese biggest festivals and enjoy dry, barren exotic landscapes, then autumn is a perfect choice. 

Can we make Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek Shorter than 23 Days?

Yes, we can do Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek in less than 23 days. By flying directly to Suketar, you can do the Kanchenjunga Trek in 13 days. Moreover, if you only go to the south base camp of Mt. Kanchenjunga, the trip can be done in 7 days as there is a road all the way up to the Yamphudin.

Why are we not taking Kathmandu to Suketar (Taplejung) direct flight and rather driving Kathmandu to Bhadrapur?

Instead of flying Kathmandu to Suketar and saving a few days of walking, we choose to drive to Bhadrapur from Kathmandu to offer you the best trekking experience. You will get to explore the lowlands and visit culturally rich villages that you may miss while flying. 

Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek permit

Kanchenjunga Circuit is a controlled area by the government of Nepal. The region is restricted and international travelers are only allowed to enter under certain rules. We will get the permit on your behalf, and our Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek package cost involves all the costs of necessary permits. 

First, you cannot trek to Kanchenjunga alone or with an independent trekker. The trip must be organized and managed by a local licensed trekking company. Second, there should be two trekkers in the group (not including the guide and porter). 

Kanchenjunga Conservation Area Project Entry Permit (KCAP): Nrs 2,000 per person

Kanchenjunga Restricted Area Permit (RAP): USD 20 per person, per week

Tea House Condition in Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek

Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek is a teahouse trek with basic facilities, like shared toilets and limited amenities. The accommodation is very raw. You will get proper accommodation in Suketar and Gunsa. A countable number of teahouses are only available in some places.

For instance, Lhonak has the last teahouse on the route to the north base camp. Whereas, Ramche is the last teahouse on the route to the south base camp. Likewise, on the Sele Pass high camp, there are only two tea houses available that accommodate ten to fifteen trekkers at a time. 

Food

The food along the Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek route is basic. You will get breakfast and dinner in the same teahouse where you spend the night. And the lunch is eaten along the way. The most common and best menu is dal bhat tarkari with other side dishes. It will keep you healthy and provide all the needed nutrients. 

Do pack enough snacks and bars to have while trekking. Better not hope to get any good snacks along the way. Even if you get one, the price will be way more than you can imagine.

FAQs

  • Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek crosses the Sele La pass, reaches the Kanchenjunga North and South Base Camp, and involves rocky, steep terrain. The trek is marked strenuous by the professional trekkers and not advised for the new trekkers.

  • You can drive for 2 days from Kathmandu to reach the starting point of the Kanchenjunga region. There is also a flight option to Bhadrapur and a drive to the starting point of the trek. You can directly fly to Suketar and begin trekking if the weather is clear.

  • Depending upon your Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek itinerary, you can do the trek in 13 days and above. Our Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek itinerary is 23 days.

  • Kanchenjunga is situated in the far eastern part of Nepal and borders Sikkim and Tibet.

  • From Kathmandu, the aerial distance to Kanchenjunga is 260 km away. Roadways distance is approximately 670 km between Kathmandu and the starting point of the Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek, Taplejung.

  • No, you cannot trek to Kanchenjunga without a guide managed by a registered local trekking company. Moreover, there should be at least two trekkers in the group, and this does not count a guide or porters.

  • No, Kanchenjunga and K2 are two different mountains located in two countries. Kanchenjunga (8,586 m/28,169 ft) is the third highest mountain in the world, situated in Nepal. Likewise, K2 (8,611 m/28,251 ft) is the second-highest mountain in the world located in Pakistan.

Client Reviews

tptripadvisor
  • I
    IsabelleGermanyDecember 04, 2022

    100 % recommended - Kanchenjunga!

    The trek to Kanchenjunga was just amazing. Bhim, my guide and the organisation of KP was 100 percent honest and clear. Their second name is hospitality and also security is written big. I always felt sage with Bhim in the mountains. So all in all I'd always go with Nirvana-Trails and Bhim again. Thanks a lot for everything!!

    Dear Isa, Namaste!
    Thank you for sharing an incredible review of your experience of the Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek with the Nirvana Trails team! We are pleased to guide you with better services and hear your experience with our guide, Bhim. Thank you for the recommendations. Hopefully, we can assist you again for the next adventure in Nepal.
    Best Regards,
    Kp Dhital and Nepal Nirvana Trails Team.

  • Tamblyn Lord
    Tamblyn LordAustraliaMay 01, 2022

    Kanchenjunga circuit trek

    Thanks Nepal Nirvana Trails: was a brilliant hike at Kanchenjunga. You helped make the experience unforgettable!

    Dear Tamblyn, Namaste!
    We appreciate you for choosing us for your Kanchenjunga trek. We are glad that your experience was wonderful and hope to see you again for more adventures.
    Best Regards,
    Kp Dhital and Nepal Nirvana Trails Team.

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