Helambu Trek

Helambu Trek
Activity
Trekking
Destination
Nepal
  • Trip Grade
    Easy 
  • Max Altitude
    3650 Meters
  • Group Size
    Min. 2 Pax 
  • Meals
    Inclusive 
  • Accommodation
    Hotel/Guesthouse 
  • Best Time
    Jan - May & Sept- Dec 
Featured Trip
All Inclusive Price: $780USD

Trip Overview

Tucked away in an unlikely spot just an hour from the city center of Kathmandu, you’ll find the trailhead to one of Nepal’s best-hidden gems: the Helambu Trek. Winding through the highlands of the Langtang Valley, this little-known route is the perfect choice for trekkers who are looking for authentic cultural experiences away from the well-trodden tourist circuit.

The Helambu region takes its name from the Hyolmo people, an ethnic group associated with Sherpa culture. Trekking through Helambu’s forested green hills, wide river valleys, and scenic mountain passes will take you to more than a few villages populated by these hospitable locals. This is your chance to get acquainted with their unique traditions and lifestyles, which have been largely unchanged by modern commerce and tourism. Helambu is also famous for its sweet-tasting apples and antique Buddhist monasteries, making it the ideal destination for travelers who want to learn more about Himalayan Buddhism while supporting local livelihoods.

Just as its culture has been preserved since time immemorial, so too has the natural landscape of Helambu retained its scenic grandeur. The Helambu Trek brings hikers into the Shivapuri Nagarjun National Park: a land of icy rivers, splendid waterfalls, thick forests, and sweeping meadows. In this pristine natural environment, it’s even possible to come across some of Nepal’s rarest and most colorful wildlife.

Keep an eye out for the shy red panda or the iconic Himalayan monal, the country’s national bird. The Helambu Trek will also give travelers the opportunity to climb mountain passes approaching 4,000 meters in altitude, where stunning panoramas of the glaciated Langtang Himal mountain range will be revealed. And because the trail can be accessed with just a short drive from Kathmandu, it’s an excellent option for visitors to Nepal who want to enjoy the best of the country’s culture and natural beauty in a short period of time.

So get ready to embark upon the adventure of a lifetime! After a sightseeing tour of Kathmandu, you’ll travel just an hour to reach the town of Sundarijal, where the Helambu Trek begins. From here, you’ll climb to high mountain passes overlooking picturesque river valleys before descending to many of the major communities of the region. Chisapani, Kutumsang, Tarkegyang, and Shermathang are just a few of the important Helambu villages you’ll visit, where you can explore timeless Buddhist monasteries, enjoy local produce, and shop for hand-crafted souvenirs fashioned by local artisans. Because the Helambu Trek remains something of a secret compared to the more popular treks in the region, it’s also likely that you’ll have the trail pretty much to yourself. This relative exclusivity helps to facilitate genuine interaction with Helambu villagers—whether it’s sitting down to a classic dinner of dal bhat or simply catching up on local gossip.

Highlights of the Helambu Trek

Choosing the Helambu Trek means that you’ll have the privilege of exploring an undisturbed alpine wilderness just a stone’s throw from the busy metropolis of Kathmandu. This accessibility is one of the major highlights of the trek; you won’t have to waste long hours on the road or risk encountering delays in airline transportation. This means the Helambu Trek is the perfect choice for travelers who are short on time and want to get straight into the business of trekking—and you’ll be awed by a swift sense of genuine remoteness stealing over you while ascending the steep slopes into the very heart of Helambu.

Another remarkable highlight of this itinerary is the chance to connect with local people. As you visit the region’s most significant towns, such as Tarkegyang and Shermathang, you’ll meet friendly villagers and be guided through the hushed interiors of ancient monasteries. If you ask us, this is what the Helambu Trek is really all about.

Is the Helambu Trek Difficult?

The Helambu trek is known for its steep stone staircases, which crisscross the Himalayan foothills of the region and make for an occasionally strenuous cardiovascular workout. But this is a relatively low-altitude trek, reaching a maximum elevation of just under 4,000 meters. While it’s still possible to encounter altitude sickness on this trail, the professional guides from Nepal Hiking Team will be with you every step of the way to make sure you’re taking frequent breaks and staying hydrated. The lower altitude also means that you’re less likely to encounter severe weather conditions.

For these reasons, the Helambu Trek is generally considered to be only moderately difficult and is suitable for most hikers in reasonably good physical condition. You can train for trekking in the Himalayas by exercising at home: jogging, walking, and swimming are great preparation. And rest assured that Nepal Hiking Team will be there to ensure that your trekking adventures are always fun, safe, and unforgettable.

Best Time of Year for the Helambu Trek

You can enjoy the Helambu Trek all year long, with each season bringing its own special character. Springtime in Nepal makes for colorful rhododendron blooms, gushing mountain streams, and comfortable weather. This is classic trekking season all over the country, lasting from February to May, and the Helambu Trek is ideal at this time of year. Autumn is another popular time to hike in this region, thanks to its cool breezes and clear mountain views between September and November.

And because the Helambu Trek keeps to relatively low altitudes, the winter months of December and January are also a great time to hit the trail. You’ll get to capture scenic photographs of villages dusted in snow, and the mountains will look more impressive than ever. The months between June and August are slightly more challenging when the annual monsoon arrives, but Helambu’s misty forests and fog-shrouded valleys have a mystery and charm all their own during summer.

Is the Helambu Trek Right for Me?

Choosing the right trek in the Nepali Himalaya can be a daunting task—these are world-class hikes through some of the most amazing scenery in the world. So how do you know if the Helambu Trek is right for you? First, consider how much time you have to spend on your trek. This itinerary starts almost directly from Kathmandu and requires only one week to complete. Second, consider your group’s experience and fitness level. The Helambu region has some steep ascents and descents, but it never reaches the challenging elevation of the country’s highest alpine routes. Finally, think about what you want to get out of your trekking experience.

The Helambu Trek is outstanding for hikers who value learning about other cultures, chatting with friendly locals, and getting a feel for the rural way of life. And if you’d like to spend even more time in this enchanting part of Nepal, there are a few alternative treks to consider. The Langtang Valley Trek takes you deeper into the mountains, and the Langtang Gosaikunda Trek connects this route with the Helambu Trek for a longer, even more, satisfying adventure.

Itinerary

Day 01: Arrive at Tribhuwan International Airport (TIA) Kathmandu

Day 02: Kathmandu Valley Sightseeing Tour

Day 03: Drive to Sundarijal and trek to Chisapani (2300m/7545ft) Duration: 4 hours

Day 04: Chisapani to Kutumsang (2446m/8022ft) Duration: 5 hours

Day 05: Kutumsang to Tharipati (3650m/11972ft) Duration: 5 hours

Day 06: Tharipati to Tarkeghyang (2743m/8997ft) Duration: 5 hours

Day 07: Tarkeghyang to Shermathang (2621m/8596ft) Duration: 4 hours

Day 08: Shermathang- Melamchi Pul Bazaar –Kathmandu, 3-4 hrs hike and 2 hrs drive

Day 09: Farewell

Cost Includes

  • All ground transportation by private vehicle including airport transfers
  • Three nights’ accommodation with breakfast at a 3-star category hotel in Kathmandu
  • Kathmandu city tours including all entry fees, tour guide and private vehicle
  • Full board meals (breakfast, lunch and dinner) during the trek
  • Best available twin sharing lodge to lodge accommodation during the trek
  • Seasonal fruits during the trek
  • One highly experienced, helpful and friendly guide, porters (1 porter for 2 people) and their food, accommodation, salary, equipment, and accidental insurance for all staff
  • Duffle bag for the trekking
  • Down jacket and sleeping bag during the trek
  • Nepal Hiking Team T - shirt, trekking map and trip achievement certificate
  • First aid medical kit
  • Langtang National Park Permits fee
  • TIMS Fee- Trekkers' Information Management System (Please bring 2 passport size photos for permit)
  • Government taxes & office service charge

Cost Excludes

  • Meals not specified in the 'Meal Inclusions' in the itinerary'
  • Travel insurance
  • International airfare
  • Nepal entry visa: you can obtain a visa easily upon your arrival at Tribhuwan International Airport in Kathmandu. (a multiple-entry tourist visa good for 30 days can be obtained by paying US $ 40 or equivalent foreign currency. Similarly, multiple-entry tourist visas for 90 days can be obtained by paying US $ 100. Please bring 2 copies of passport-size photos.)
  • Drinks (hot and cold), snacks and other personal expenses
  • Hot shower during the trek
  • Personal trekking equipments
  • Tips and gratuities for trekking staff and drivers

Cost & Dates

  • Small Group Journey
  • Private Journey

Start Dates are your arrival date in Nepal and End Dates are the returning date from Nepal.

The set departure dates listed are specially quoted and specified for group joining option. Let us know if the set departure dates are not suitable for you- another dates which are suitable for you can certainly be added by us.

Upcoming Trip Departure

  • Guaranteed - Trip is Guaranteed to run
  • Available - Trip is available to run if minimum group size is filled
  • Limited - Only few space available
Check Available Dates
Trip Start Date Trip End Date Price Availability Book

Private trips are available on any date of your choice at any time of the year. Let us know about your preferred travel dates and we shall organize it as per your convenience. Get in touch with us via bellow contact us form.

Reviews

Jayadatta Narasipura, USA Dear Ganga and the entire team, We, Narasipura family would like to thank you and your team for making once in a lifetime experience possible. All three of us loved every minute we spent in the Himalayas and Nepal. After my EBC trek, I wanted to experience Himalayas again with my family. Your team made it possible. Every day, we knew what to expect because Paban explained us on previous evening and in the morning. In seven days, we trekked in the lush green forest, saw numerous waterfalls, were inside the clouds, refreshed ourselves in the river and stream water, took multiple breaks with tea, coffee. Even though it was very hard, especially from 3rd to 5th day, we managed to get over the fatigue to continue because of Paban, Gokul and Ganesh’s help and encouragement. They used to tell us to take it easy (Aaramse jayenke) then we can do it, no need to rush. Paban modified the plan/itinerary based on the time of the day and our physical condition. We always ended the day before 5pm. Paban was flexible and booked the best teahouses, he made our trek very enjoyable. On fourth day, we were scheduled to trek to Upper Sinuwa. He changed it, we stayed at Lower Sinuwa. Because of 4th day’s change of plan, he modified fifth day trek too. Every day, as soon as we woke up, we started off with a hot cup of coffee or tea, they served to us without fail. Enjoying first few minutes of the day looking the sunrise in the mountains with a hot drink was so peaceful and relaxing. At the end of every day, we had fun, talking, playing cards, and having delicious dinner with fresh fruits as dessert. It was a beautiful experience. Paban, Gokul and Ganesh treated us royally and with respect, we are grateful to them. Spending last two days of our trek in the Machapuchare and Annapurna basecamps were a bliss, surrounded by the Annapurna mountain range was just amazing, and unbelievable. On the last day of the trip, we loved the cultural tour of the three cities, we were mesmerized by the artwork. Hope we can come back and enjoy Nepal again. We appreciate everything you did for us to accomplish our dream trek. Datta Trip done between 9th to 18th May 2022
Richard, UK "After extensive research regarding which trekking company to entrust with helping me with my dream holiday I chose The Nepal Hiking Team. This was for a number of reasons.
  1. Ganga and his team were super flexible, quick to respond, and allowed me to build a bespoke holiday that suited my schedule.
  2. When things went wrong at my end, they were quick to come up with solutions to help me out
  3. They understood this was a once in a lifetime experience for me, and answered my many and varied questions.
Once I arrived in Nepal it was immediately clear I had made the right decision. I was picked up from the airport, and driven to the hotel where I met Ganga and my guide Dinesh. Dinesh checked that the equipment I had brought with me was suitable, and NHT provided me a down jacket. The next day we flew out of Kathmandu, to EBC and Island Peak. Dinesh looked after me for the next 12 days in the mountains. He is an expert on the local area. Point at any mountain, and he can tell you how high it is and what its name is. He has travelled extensively over the area for more than 8 years, and he uses this knowledge to enrich your holiday experience. Every hotel you stay in, he knows the owners, and ensures you get a comfortable room. Need your washing done, or a hot shower? He will recommend where (and where not!) to get it done. When you are walking the trails he can tell you how much further you have to go, what bits will be difficult, and which easier. If you are looking to book with Nepal Hiking, and are lucky enough to have Dinesh as a guide then you are going to have a fabulous trip"
Walt Risley, USA When searching for a trekking company I wanted to go with a local group. All the reviews for Nepal Hiking Team were excellent so I choose them. From start to finish they had their act together. Initial correspondence and any email questions were answered by Ganga, the man in charge, by the next day. They kept me up to date with everything I needed as far as entry into Nepal. Picked me up from the airport and got me to my hotel without an issue. I joined a couple from Canada for the trek. Our guide Prakash never left our side from breakfast to dinner. He expedited the flight to and from Lukla which would have been a hectic process without him. Since all of us were in our 50s he established early that we would be in no rush. Whether we got to our next location at 2pm or 4pm didn’t matter. I would rather be outside enjoying the trek than in early playing cards. I felt safe and looked after with him. This trek is tough. It’s much steeper than I anticipated and the altitude change from place to place does not reflect the ascents and descents which on some days doubles the heights you actually do. They ascents into Tengbouche and at Dugla pass are particularly tough but at a slow steady pace they are doable by any who are reasonably fit. Once at the guest house the service didn’t end there. Prakash took care of all our needs. Making sure we had enough to eat and enough water. He wouldn’t leave our side until we turned in for the night which was often quite early. His personality was very soothing. We could not have accomplished what we did without him or our 2 porters. While English was not their strength, they would carry our gear ahead of us to the next location and often double back to see if we needed help and were more than happy to help with our day packs. They also accompanied us on some of the acclimation hikes in case some or one of us wanted to climb higher, splitting us up. After the trek everything was taken care of. I needed a PCR COVID test for a tour in Abu Dahbi the day after I left Kathmandu and Ganga arranged for a nurse to administer it to me in the hotel. Seamless. It’s a long review but I really can’t say enough about these guys, especially for the price. For all the service we got it was amazingly reasonable. Would definitely use this company on any return trip to Nepal and highly recommend!     You can also read this review on trip advisor.
Nicola Ross, Australia The Annapurna circuit trek was one of the best treks I’ve ever experienced. I completed it with my sister (we are both in our early sixties) on a private tour in April 2022. It was very well organized by Nepal Hiking Team, a very professional organization. Nina provided wonderful advice on the trip initially. Our guide, Hari was experienced, attentive, capable, and kind. He made the trip a success for us, along with Nomoratz, our porter, who carried our gear with such good humour. The Himalayas are the most majestic mountain range in the world. The trek was very strenuous and challenging, (more for me than my sister) but was such a wonderful experience. We have learned so much about Hinduism and Buddhism and have developed a great affection and respect for the Nepalese people. They are wonderful hosts with a rich culture we have enjoyed learning about. I highly recommend this company, our guide, and porter if you are considering trekking in Nepal. This country offers real adventure, beauty, and cultural experiences to those who venture here. See this review on TripAdvisor (click here)
Beste Gokkilic Yazar, Turkey We did eight days Mardi Himal trek and it was a very pleasant experience. The whole team arranged everything with great professionalism and they were equally precise when something unexpected or out of the plan happened. They took great care for us both during our accommodation in Kathmandu and the trekking period as well. Our guide Dinesh was also extremely helpful and knowledgeable. I would absolutely recommend him, he was always there with his stunning hospitality when we needed. He is also a great teacher, taught me some of the basics of Nepalese language too :D. I would definitely recommend Nepal Hiking Team if you have any plans to travel to Nepal for trekking purposes.