Helambu and Gosaikunda Trek from Sundarijal - 9 days

Helambu and Gosaikunda Trek from Sundarijal - 9 days

Helambu and Gosaikunda Trek from Sundarijal takes you to the highland villages of Helambu and the Gosiankunda Lake in the Langtang Region. Explore the homeland of the Hyolmos, an indigenous community who trace their origin to Tibetan Highlands. Cross the Laurebina Pass and trek to the sacred Gosaikunda Lake. Return via a different route, through the Langtang National Park. Taking a different trail for your return hike enriches your experience and makes your journey interesting. Another positive feature of this trek is that you will encounter very few tourists on this trail.  The trail is less crowded and more peaceful than the popular Everest and Annapurna trails.

An hour's drive from central Kathmandu brings you to the trailhead at Sundarijal, Starting from Sundarijal you enter the Shivapuri National Park and walk through a dense jungle to the hilltop village of Chisapani. Soon after you enter Hyolmo country and meander through the terraced fields and farms of Kutumsang, Pati Bhanjyang, and Tharepati.

From Phedi, you ascend the Laurebina Pass and savor the snow-covered panorama of the Langtang Range, Ganesh Himal, Manaslu, and Dorje Lakpa glistening on the horizon. An arduous ascent brings you to Gosaikunda Lake. Soak in the magnificent views of the glacier-fed lakes flanked by the frozen mountains.

A pilgrimage destination for both Hindus and Buddhists, Gosaikunda is said to have been created by Lord Shiva to quench his thirst. The lake is supposed to hold immense spiritual power. During auspicious occasions local shamans gather by the lakeside to meditate and perform initiation rites. After spending a night by the lakeside you head down the Laurebina Pass.

You take a different route while returning. Walk across the Langtang National Park and explore the Tamang village of Sing Gompa before finally descending to Dhunche. From Dhunche board a bus or a jeep and return to Kathmandu via the Trishuli Highway.

This Helambu and Gosaikunda Trek from Sundarijal can be done by both novice and experienced trekkers. The trails are well-maintained and safe. Most of the villages en route are connected by dirt roads, which means transportation will be readily available in case of an emergency.

How Much Does This Trip Cost?

The trip's price depends on the type of services chosen by our clients and the group size. The cost of each trip we organize is different because we see travelers as individuals having their own particular needs and preferences.

Get ready for an incredible journey tailored to your interests and preferences, whether you're looking for a budget-friendly adventure or a luxurious getaway. Leave the planning to us as we take care of all the details, ensuring your dream trip becomes a reality. You can relax and focus on creating unforgettable memories that will stay with you forever.

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Trip Highlights

  • Explore two trekking regions - Helambu and Langtang
  • Trek to the high-altitude lake of Gosaikunda
  • Walk through the highland villages of Hyolmos, an indigenous tribe of Tibetan origin
  • Enter two national parks - Shivapuri National Park and Langtang National Park
  • Overnight stays at Hyolmo and Tamang villages
  • Returning via a different route adds variety and richness to the trip
  • Trekking route easily accessible from Kathmandu

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights
Day 1 Arrive in Kathmandu, transfer to hotel, and trek preparation
Day 2 Drive from Kathmandu to Sundarijal and trek to Chisapani (2300m) - 1-hour drive and 4/5 hours trek
Day 3 Trek from Chisapani to Kutumsang (2470 m) - 6 -7 hours trek
Day 4 Trek from Kutumsang to Tharepati (3690 m)- 6- 7 hours trek
Day 5 Trek from Tharepati to Phedi (3730 m) - 5-6 hours trek
Day 6 Trek from Phedi to Gosaikunda (4430 m) via Laurebina Pass (4610 m) - 6 - 7 hours trek
Day 7 Trek from Gosaikunda to Dhunche (1960 m) - 6-7 hours trek
Day 8 Drive from Dhunche to Kathmandu - 7-8 hours drive
Day 9 Final departure from Nepal

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1
Arrive in Kathmandu, transfer to hotel, and trek preparation

Our guide will be there to pick you up from the airport and drive you to your hotel. Check-in and sleep off the jet lag. Later in the day, you will meet your trekking guide who will brief you about the route and condition of the trail. Check your gear list and make sure you have packed all the essential items needed for your trek. If you want to rent or buy gear and equipment you can find lots of shops in Thamel that sell and rent out good quality gear. You can also shop for snacks and exchange or withdraw local currency.  

Extra stuff which you won't be needing during the trek can be stored in the hotel's locker room or at our office. Make sure to lock your bag properly before giving it up for safekeeping.

Overnight in Kathmandu. 

Day 2
Drive from Kathmandu to Sundarijal and trek to Chisapani (2300m) - 1-hour drive and 4/5 hours trek

After breakfast, you drive past the chaotic traffic of Kathmandu and head towards Sundarijal. The route takes you to the northern hills hemming Kathmandu Valley. After reaching the bus stand at Sundarijal you get off the vehicle and begin your trek. Take the steps leading to Shivapuri National Park. At the ticket counter, your guide will purchase the park's entry tickets.  Continue your hike up admiring the scenery. There's a waterfall that cascades down on the left side of the staircase while the Bagmati River, a sacred river flows down below. Natural grottos with shrines dedicated to Lord Shiva appear alongside the waterfall.

After a quick ascent, you reach the Sundaijal Dam, a major source of water supply in Kathmandu.  Walk on a well-marked trail and reach Mulkharka, a small Tamang settlement. You can take a small break here. Between Mulkharka and Chisapani there are no villages, shops, or restaurants. There's only an army check post in the middle of the forest. Walk through the dense forest enjoying the peaceful vibe. While the Shivapuri National Park is smaller than most national parks in Nepal, it is home to a variety of animal and bird species. The park is a popular spot for bird and butterfly watchers.

While hiking through the verdant forest troops of monkeys can be seen and heard from the trail. After walking for about ten kilometers you finally reach Chisapani. Abandoned buildings that were destroyed during the 2015 earthquake line the road. Located on the top of a hill, Chisapani is a popular day-hiking destination. One can savor amazing views of the surrounding hills and the Langtang and Ganesh Himal ranges. Newly built lodges and resorts now cater to the rush of domestic as well as foreign tourists. Head to a lodge where your guide has booked a room for you and take a rest.

Overnight in Chisapani.

Day 3
Trek from Chisapani to Kutumsang (2470 m) - 6 -7 hours trek

Leaving Chisapani you take the route to Kutumsang. The stretch between the two stops is long and filled with gentle ups and downs. You start off by taking the rough gravel road that leads toward the outskirts of the settlement. The road hugs the side of a hill and you can enjoy impressive views of verdant rolling hills from the trail. En route, you cross the settlements of Pati Bhanjyang and Thankhune Bhanjyang. Millet and paddy grow on terraces carved on the hillsides while cattle and goats graze on the grassy slopes. You can observe the villagers busy with their chores. Snowcapped views of Dorje Lakpa, Ganesh Himal, and Phurbi Chyachu keep you inspired as you walk closer to your destination.

At Chipling you stop for a break and rest your tired legs. Open meadows and pine trees line the trail as you get closer to Kutumsang. A large chorten and prayer flags greet you as you enter the village. Spend the night at one of the brand-new lodges.

Overnight in Kutumsang.

Day 4
Trek from Kutumsang to Tharepati (3690 m)- 6- 7 hours trek

After an early breakfast head towards Tharepati. Follow a forested trail filled with oak, bamboo, and pine trees. The trail goes through some steep ascents and downhills. Stop at Kyuola Bhanjyang for a breather. There's a viewpoint to the east of the village from where you can see the summit of Shisapangma, an eight-thousand-meter peak on the Tibetan side. Walk past the small village of Mangingoth and follow a flat trail to Tharepati. The trail weaves past a beautiful forest of tall cedars, juniper, oak, and rhododendron. Enjoying the scenic views you finally reach Tharepati. You head to a teahouse and rest your tired legs. A small hill north of Tharepati offers great views of Rolwaling Himal and Langtang. If you are not too tired you can hike to this hill and watch the sunset. 

Overnight in Tharepati.

Day 5
Trek from Tharepati to Phedi (3730 m) - 5-6 hours trek

The trail becomes rugged as you gain elevation. The hike from Tahrepati to Phedi takes you past a rugged landscape filled with rocky ascents and descents and river crossings. The trail weaves past rocky cliffs and hillsides. After Gopte the trees begin to disappear and small shrubs and scrub vegetation cover the landscape. After some steep ascents on a stone staircase, you finally reach Phedi.

Surrounded by barren mountains and hills Phedi lies on the side of a rocky hill. There are only a few teahouses here offering basic amenities.

Overnight in Phedi.

Day 6
Trek from Phedi to Gosaikunda (4430 m) via Laurebina Pass (4610 m) - 6 - 7 hours trek

Today's trek takes you to the sacred lake of Gosaikunda. From Phedi take the trail up to the Laurebina Pass, crossing the small lake of Suryakunda. The ascent is tough and you can feel the decrease in the level of oxygen which makes breathing difficult. Colorful prayer flags and stone chortens decorate the pass. There are Buddhist shrines built along the way.

From Laurebina La enjoy splendid views of the Langtang Range, Manaslu, Himalchuli, and Ganesh Himal.  As you approach the lake the trail gets flatter and narrower. Hugging the wall of steep ridges the narrow path has a sheer drop-off on one side. Metal railings have been built on the exposed side for safety.

Feel your aches and pains melting away as you catch sight of the deep blue waters of Gosaikunda Lake, Bhairav Kunda, and Saraswati Kunda, Surrounded by snow-covered glaciers, the lakes look heavenly.  After a brief rest at the teahouse, you can explore the lake or hike to a viewpoint that lies close to the lake.  Since this is a sacred pilgrimage site you will find shrines of Lord Shiva on the lake's shore. Hindus believe that Gosaikunda Lake was created when Lord Shiva struck his trident to find water to quench his thirst. According to a Hindu legend, after drinking the poison that came out during 'Sagar Manthan', Lord Shiva wandered in the Himalayas in pain and reached this spot to quench his thirst. 

Gosaikunda is supposed to be a powerful spiritual spot and people come here to meditate. New jhankris (shamans) are ordained here during the full moon festival of 'Janai Purnima'. Hindus also gather here during the festival which falls in the Nepali month of Shrawan (July/August). 

Overnight in Gosaikunda.

Day 7
Trek from Gosaikunda to Dhunche (1960 m) - 6-7 hours trek

Wake up early and watch the beautiful view of the lake shimmering in the early morning sun. After breakfast retrace your steps and head down to Dhunche. You cross the Laurebina Pass once more and reach the small village of Cholang Pati where you can stop for a brief rest and lunch. There are no settlements between Cholang Pati and Sing Gompa and you can enjoy walking through a long stretch of pristine forest.

Located inside the Langtang National Park, Sing Gompa or Chandanbari is surrounded by rhododendron shrubs, pine trees, and wildflowers. The attractions of this beautiful Tamang settlement include an old Buddhist monastery and a yak cheese factory. Take a pleasant stroll around the village before heading down to Dhunche Bazaar. You get to cross two metal suspension bridges en route.

Head down on the stone steps and walk beside a roaring river before finally reaching Dhunche. Your trek ends in Dhunche, a small but busy Tamang settlement. The Nepal-Tibet border lies only a few kilometers away from Dhunche. You stay overnight at a local lodge. Have a hearty meal and rest your tired muscles. Retire early as you have a long ride ahead of you tomorrow.

Overnight in Dhunche

Day 8
Drive from Dhunche to Kathmandu - 7-8 hours drive

From Dhunche you take a bus or private jeep to Kathmandu. You will be riding on both gravel and asphalt roads during the journey. Soak in the beautiful scenery along the Trishuli-Dhunche Highway during the ride.

Once you arrive in Kathmandu you check into your hotel and take a well-deserved rest. In the evening you can stroll around Thamel and shop for souvenirs.

Overnight in Kathmandu.


Day 9
Final departure from Nepal

It's the end of your Helambu and Gosaikunda Trek and it's finally time to bid goodbye to Kathmandu. Our guide will drop you off at the Tribhuvan International Airport at least three hours before your flight departs. If you want to explore more destinations in the Himalayas (Bhutan, Tibet Autonomous Region of China, or India) please do let us know. We run tours in all these countries.

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