Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek - 19 Days

(5.0)17 reviews
Know before you go
  • Duration 19 Days
  • Difficulty Level Strenuous
  • Trip Start and End Kathmandu to Kathmandu
  • Best Season Mar-May and Sept-Nov
  • Trip Area Kanchenjunga Region
  • 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 the Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek. 

Kanchenjunga Trek explores around the third-highest mountain in the world, Mt. Kanchenjunga (8,586m). Our Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek itinerary leads you to the north and south 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 for Kanchenjunga South Base Camp or Kanchenjunga North Base Camp only. 

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, the Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek is even more difficult and remote. 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 2024|2025. We have also opened our early booking for the Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek 2024 spring & autumn. 

Views during the Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek

You will get to see stunning views of the 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 bears, musk deer, snow leopards, red pandas, 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 clauses/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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Let us know your arrival flight and airline schedule, and the airport representative of NNT will be at the Tribhuwan International Airport to receive you. He will transfer you to the hotel booked by ourselves in a private vehicle. You can stroll on the road of Thamel in the evening and have good rest at the hotel.

  • 3 Star Hotel
  • Breakfast
  • 1400m.|4593ft.

Today, the team management will meet you at around 9 am and take your original passport for the preparation of the permit. At 5 pm, the team manager will meet you at our office, hand over your original passport, and introduce you to the trekking guide. He will check the trekking equipment you have and suggest that if you need to buy or rent it, it is available in the Trekking shops in Thamel. 

Optional: You can do the sightseeing tour of Kathmandu's UNESCO World Heritage sites in the afternoon.

  • 3 Star Hotel
  • Breakfast
  • 1400m.|4593ft.

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 through Kanyam. We drive via Mechi Highway from Kanyam viewing the tea cultivations on the way toward Taplejung from where the trek to Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek begins.

  • Hotel
  • Lunch and Dinner
  • 1820m.|5971ft.

We will have our breakfast and catch the local jeep and begin our second-day ride to reach our destination for the day, Sekathum. Usually, trekkers prefer to walk up to Sekathum from Taplejung but by making our itinerary short and utilizing the available services in the region, we reach Sekathum two days before other trekkers. The drive will take us through Mitlung, Chirwa, Thapethok, Lelep, and several other villages along the Tamor Nadi. There is the Kanchenjunga National Park entry point on our way, where our permits are checked and allowed to move forward to Sekathum.

  • Tea House
  • Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • 1650m.|5413ft.

After two days of the drive, we will start our hike with breakfast at Sekathum. The Himalayas' adventurous journey begins with an ascent along the Ghunsa Khola and walking over many bridges along the way, exploring through verdant trees, the little settlements of Jonggim, and Ghaiyabari reaching Amjilosa. 

  • Tea House
  • Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • 2498m.|8195ft.

We move forward to Gyabla which is also known as Kyapra from Amjilosa after having breakfast. We continue to move in our path through a dense forest and trail without a Human settlement. Today, we can spot Red Pandas during our hike on the Kanchenjunga Trail, if we got lucky. After the uphill climb, we get to view the magnificent sceneries of the mountains and several waterfalls on the way. We slowly make our way and reach Gyabla village. 

  • Tea House
  • Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • 2725m.|8940ft.

The walk through the woodlands with a wide range of flora and fauna leads us to the Phale village. Continuing the trek at a pace, we will reach Ghunsa village. Many trekkers stop at Ghunsa for acclimatization, but we have our acclimation day at Khambachen. 

  • Tea House
  • Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • 3415m.|11204ft.

We will have our breakfast and begin the gradual ascent through an open pine forest and also have the chance to spot blue sheep and snow leopards. The trail passes through landslide-prone areas. We see the spectacular view of Mt. Jannu, encounter the green glacier valleys, and finally reach Khambachen village.

  • Tea House
  • Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • 4145m.|13599ft.

We rest at Khambachen after several days of walking. For the adjustment of the body to the altitude, we will have a short hike to nearby glaciers, viewpoints, and lakes. We can meet numerous trekkers in Khambachen returning from and traveling to Kanchenjunga North Base Camp.

  • Tea House
  • Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

We move ahead to the trail of the Kanchenjunga glacier. We can meet the trekkers in the main trekking season walking toward and returning from the Kanchenjunga North Base Camp on this track. We move through the Ramdang and come across the Ramdang Monastery. We are on the difficult trail, now at the junction of the Lhonak and Kanchenjunga glaciers. Walking forward, we reach the tiny settlement of Lhonak with a few teahouses.

  • Tea House
  • Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • 4792m.|15721ft.

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 third-highest mount Kanchenjunga is the reward after multiple days of trekking. We will return to Lhonak for an overnight stay.

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

Rejoicing the views of the Himalayas and leaving behind the Kanchenjunga Base Camp, retracing the track, we arrive at Ghunsa. The Kanchenjunga trail gives us memories of walking passing the stone huts, soaring mountain peaks, rocky fields nearby the trails, rock-falling zones, etc.

  • Tea House
  • Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • 3415m.|11204ft.

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 which are open only in the main trekking season. When there is heavy snowfall there is no other way connecting the pathway to reach South Base Camp until Sekathum. If the teahouses are closed and still we can cross the passes then, we can even reach Tseram in a day cutting a day off from our planned itinerary.

  • Tea House
  • Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • 4240m.|13910ft.

Leaving Sele Le Pass, we will hike up to the high-altitude passes, Sinion La (4440m.|2758ft.), then Mirgin La (4480m.|2783ft.) and Sinelapche Bhanjyang (4645m.|2886ft.). We will see the spectacular panoramic view of Mt. Jannu, Everest, Makalu, Baruntse, Chamlang, and Kanchenjunga during our ascent. We descend to Tseram and stay overnight over there.

  • Tea House
  • Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • 3868m.|12690ft.

Today, after early morning breakfast, we head forward through the Yalung glacier getting higher and close to the vistas. Passing by the Yalung which provides views of Rathong (6682m) and Kabru (7412m), we will stop for lunch at Ramche. We will hike to Oktang/ Okhordung the viewpoint of Yalung Base Camp or Kanchenjunga South Base Camp. Enjoying the closer view of three summits of Mt. Kanchenjunga 8420m, 8586m, and 8474m, and other towering peaks, exploring this untouched, unexplored by many trekkers, Kanchenjunga Base Camp, we will return to Tseram.  

  • Tea House
  • Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • 4740m.|15551ft.

The elevated snow-capped mountains behind us and the walk through the rhododendron forests give us tranquility. Our trek starts downhill and ends at Tortong passing through Simbuwa Khola with enchanting views of the Himalayas en route. We will stay overnight at Tortong.

  • Tea House
  • Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • 2980m.|9776ft.

From Tortong, we persist to descend to the Amji Khola passing through Lasiya/Lamite Bhanjyang (3415m) and Dhupi Bhanjyang (2665m). Walking past the steep slope area, we reach Yamphudin village. There is the Kanchenjunga Conservation Area checkpost in Yamphudin, where our permits are checked if we had begun our trek with Kanchenjunga South Base Camp first.

  • Tea House
  • Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • 1692m.|3910ft.

After having breakfast in Yamphudin, we start exploring beautiful landscapes through the trails, and trekking alongside the pathway of Kabeli Khola. Leaving the mountain villages, we will take a drive to Kanyam, a beautiful place surrounded by tea gardens. Along the way to Kanyam, we can see the cardamom and tea cultivation through our windows. Keeping the bittersweet memories of the trek at the high altitudes, we are now at the lowlands. You can encounter many local tourists as Kanyam is a popular destination with tea gardens.

  • Tea House
  • Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • 1210m.|3969ft.

We will have our breakfast and explore the green tea cultivation area for a while. Then, we will have a 2-3 hour drive to Bhadrapur. We will have a 45 to 50 minutes flight from Bhadrapur to Kathmandu in the late afternoon. We will escort you to your hotel and invite you to a farewell dinner with our management team in the evening.

  • Tea House
  • Breakfast, Lunch and Farewell Dinner
  • 1400m.|4593ft.

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 - 19 Days map

What's Included

  • Airport Pickup and drop service during both international and domestic flight
  • All necessary trekking permits 
  • 3-star Hotel in Kathmandu for 3 nights
  • All accommodations during the trek
  • Meals (Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner) during the trek and Tea and Coffee
  • Government Licensed and first aid-trained trekking guide
  • Salary, food, equipment, and insurance of the trekking Guide
  • Sharing Jeep / Bus (Bhadrapur - Illam / Taplejung - Sekathum and Yamphudin - Kanyam - Bhadrapur airport)
  • Flight From Kathmandu - Bhadrapur, and Bhadrapur - Kathmandu
  • First aid kit with basic medication
  • Sleeping bag / Down Jacket if needed (it is refundable)
  • Nepal Nirvana T-shirt, Trekking Map, and Water Purifications 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 covers emergency Rescues and evacuations
  • During trekking time personal expenses, snacks, Beer, coke, juice, water, WI-FI, etc.
  • Porter ($400 One porter between two trekkers)
  • Private Jeep ($ 400 - Bhadrapur - Illam / Taplejung - Sekathum and Yamphudin - Kanyam - Bhadrapur airport)
  • Lunch and Dinner in Kathmandu 
  • Sightseeing entrance fees ( temples, monasteries)
  • Tips for treks guide and porter (it is expected)
Add-Ons & Options

The package provides an affordable way for budget-conscious trekkers to explore the Kanchenjunga Region. However, there is also the option to enhance your experience with add-ons to the package.

Porter Service

You have the option to include a porter in addition to your guide. The porter carries a load of up to 20 - 25 kilograms. You can share the heavier belongings with the porter, allowing you to trek more comfortably and with the guidance of your trekking guide. 

One Porter Costs: USD 400

Private Transportation

We offer shared bus/jeep transportation between Bhadrapur - Taplejung - Sekathum and Yamphudin - Kanyam - Bhadrapur airport with the package.

Alternatively, you can opt for private transportation for an additional fee, which covers the journey from Bhadrapur - Taplejung - Sekathum and the return trip from Yamphudin - Kanyam - Bhadrapur airport.

Private Jeep from Bhadrapur - Taplejung - Sekathum: USD 300
Private Jeep from Yamphudin - Kanyam - Bhadrapur airport : USD 300

Upcoming Departures

    
Start DateWednesdayJuly 24, 2024End DateSundayAugust 11, 2024PriceAvailableUS $1399

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 adds to the difficulty. 

Similarly, acute mountain sickness (AMS) 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 problems, 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 find 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 the Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek Shorter than 18 Days?

Yes, we can do Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek in less than 18 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 less than 10 days as there is a road up to the Yamphudin.

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

Instead of flying from 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 (KRAP): 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. 

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
  • E
    EliIsraelMay 21, 2024

    Kanchenjunga north and south base camps - 21 days

    We had only 2 weeks to organize the whole trip and a lot of uncertainty about the flight changes, delays and cancellations, so Kul from Nepal Nirvana Trails, helped us to build a dynamic trip program between 19-22 days with minimum necessary advance payment that included guide, porter, food, sleep, permits, transportation and internal flights for the entire trip. The communication on WhatsApp chat/call was very easy and we got all the needed details for the entire trip and felt confident to continue. Additional great surprise was that we got a very experienced guide Jangbu (And his brother Pemba as porter) after Kul realized that we are experienced group and probably will want to do extra hiking additions during the trek. The whole trip was organized exactly as promised and we could enjoy the hike and the beautiful Kanchenjunga area without any logistic worries. Jabgbu and Pempa functioned as a very effective team and helped everyone when needed, specially when some height and stomach problems appeared or the weather changed and made the necessary adjustments to the hiking plan so in the end, we all got the best experience as possible.

    Dear Eli, Namaste!
    Thank you so much for sharing your experience of trekking with us on the Kanchenjunga trail! We're thrilled to hear that you had such a positive trip to Kanchenjunga Circuit with Jangbu as your guide. Thank you for choosing Nirvana Trails for your trekking adventure in Nepal. We're honored to have been a part of your journey, and we look forward to welcoming you back for more adventures in the future!
    Best Regards,
    Kp Dhital and Nepal Nirvana Trails Team.
    WhatsApp: +977 9841380469

  • M
    MaxUnited StatesMay 20, 2024

    Kanchenjunga

    We did the Kanchenjunga base camp trek and it was a great experience! KP, who runs the company is very honest, explains everything in detail and makes you well prepared for the challenging trek. Our guide Mingmar was always funny, calling us the „adventure group“ and was flexible with our decisions during the trek. I can highly recommend doing this trek via Nepal Nirvana

    Dear Max, Namaste!
    Thank you so much for taking the time to share your positive experience with us! We're thrilled you had an excellent trek to the Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek with the guide, Mingmar. Thank you for recommending the trek and our service. We hope to welcome you back for another unforgettable trek in the future!
    Best Regards,
    Kp Dhital and Nepal Nirvana Trails Team.
    WhatsApp: +977 9841380469

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