Best Treks in January in Nepal
With the magnificent Himalayas providing ample opportunity for outdoor activities, Nepal has been a popular destination for trekking, mountaineering, and adventure. Despite the challenges on snow with freezing temperatures, the outstanding experience makes up for all the effort. In this article, we are talking about the best treks in January in Nepal.
January is the middle of winter in Nepal and by winter it is not extremely cold here in Nepal. Of course, the high Himalayas are exceptional, however, the cold is bearable in Nepal. January is one of the beautiful seasons in Nepal presenting beautiful views of the Himalayas as well as natural landscapes. January is also a season where the trekkers can celebrate the New Year. Witnessing the Nepali way of celebrating New year and capturing beautiful moments during your stay in Nepal, you can opt for visiting several places including the Himalayan region of Nepal.
Treks in Nepal in January
Despite the cold weather and temperature, January has a lot to offer you. You will fall in love with the natural landscapes as the Himalayas offer you beautiful snow-capped mountains, forests, and diverse flora-fauna. Despite being the coldest month of the year, people choose to accept the challenges by trekking to several places in Nepal. Treks in January in Nepal are not impossible however, very few trekkers choose this month for trekking and adventure in Nepal. Because of this, trekking in January is less crowded and suitable for those who are searching for less isolated treks. Most people are bothered by the extreme cold at high altitudes during January and rather choose to trek in spring and autumn. However, trekking in January has its thrill and adventure.
As many routes are covered with snow which the trekkers will have difficulty reaching base camps. Also, with the drop in temperature to -30 degrees, the trek becomes challenging. But for the extreme trekkers, such things do not become an issue, with rear gear and equipment trekking is possible in January as well. Moreover, the trekkers find this season more challenging and adventurous than any other season.
Highlights of Treks in January in Nepal
- The astonishing and stunning view of the snow-capped peaks
- Less crowded trails where one can trek peacefully
- Less rainfall because of which the trails become dry and walking is easier.
- The clear sky presents a beautiful view even during the nighttime.
- More choices for facilities such as food and accommodation due to less number of trekkers.
Nepal is precisely a wonderful country with magnificent views of the Himalayas providing you with an ample opportunity to do outdoor activities. Likewise, some trekking destinations are more comfortably done during the months of winter including January in Nepal.
8 Best Treks in January in Nepal
Gokyo Valley Trek
Gokyo valley trek is one of the finest trekking routes through the Sagarmatha National Park, exploring the diverse flora and fauna along with the magnificent view of the Himalayas. With an approaching view of the iconic peak including the superb scenery of the natural landscapes, Gokyo valley is one of the most remarkable treks in Nepal. The Valley of Gokyo with its luminous lakes, and the superb practically exceptional sweeping views of Everest, Lhotse, Makalu, Cho Oyu, and the other Himalayas is heartwarming. So it is one of the best treks in January in Nepal.
- The wonderful panoramic views of Everest, Makali, Cho Oyu, and other peaks from Gokyo Ri.
- The culture, hospitality, and peaceful village and community of Sherpa people.
- The diverse flora and fauna in Sagarmatha National Park.
- Stunning scenario from Ngozumpa Glacier
- Ancient monasteries and gompas including the Khumjung monastery
- Exploration of Namche bazaar and historic Tengboche Monastery
The trek starts with the flight from Kathmandu to Lukla following the same route as Everest base camp through Namche Bazaar. Then the trails follow the opaque waters of the Dudh Koshi river upstream to Ngozumpa Glacier. Following the beautiful Gokyo Valley and its serene series of lakes and villages, the trek takes you to the wonder of Gokyo. The people here, mostly Sherpas, are warm, welcoming, and live out a traditional way highly untouched by modernization. With several herds of yaks to encourage their living, they are keen believers of Buddhism. Here, people will not only enjoy the stunning scenery but also the local culture and tradition along with the way of life.
The trek to Gokyo valley can be extended even further by over the pass of Cho La (5240m) towards Everest Base Camp. Also, one can choose to head in the other direction over Renjo La (5360m) for the alternative path back to Namche and Lukla. Representing the wonderful opportunity to visit one of the remote and locally wonderful valleys in Nepal, the Gokyo valley trek has been gaining popularity among visitors in recent days.
Langtang- Gosaikunda- Helambu
One of the culturally enhancing treks with an extraordinary view of the Langtang Himal, holy lake Gosaikunda, and villages in Helambu.
This trek through Langtang, Gosaikunda, and Helambu is one of the most spectacular destinations in Nepal. Langtang to Gosaikunda and Helambu trek is one of the nearest trekking destinations from the valley and is a moderate-level trek. This trek takes you to the banks of the Bhote Koshi River through the Langtang Valley to the sacred Gosaikunda Lake and the Hyolmo villages of Helambu. Your journey will be pervaded with expansive mountain views, stunning freshwater lakes, and wonderful villages
It is a beautiful journey in Nepal through lush forests, picturesque villages, plentiful wildlife, and astounding views of the majestic Himalayas. Furthermore, this is among the favorable treks in January in Nepal.
- Sightseeing tour in Kathmandu, and its religious sites.
- Closeup majestic view of snow-capped peaks from and glaciers at Kyanjin Ri
- Trek to the high alpine lake at Gosaikunda
- Exploration of Helambu village along with its region’s ethnic and indigenous groups.
- Exploration of Diverse flora, Fauna, and wildlife
- Visit yak farms and cheese factory
- Several ancient gompas and monasteries were on the way.
The two-week trek starts with the UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Kathmandu. Then, driving to Syabrubesi, a Tamang village on the banks of the Bhote Koshi River, the trek begins from here. The next day will be the trek to Kyanjin Gompa and the climb of Tserko Ri. The climb awaits you with the magnificent view of the Langtang Lirung. Likewise, the trails continue towards Langtang Valley and reach Gosaikunda. It is a holy place of pilgrimage for both Buddhists and Hindus. From here passing through several other lakes we will cross the Laurebina Pass from where the trek to Helambu begins.
Ama Yangri at 3800m is the next highlight of the trek which showcases the stunning panorama of Mt. Shishapangma and the Langtang ranges. The peaks seem so close that we can feel them next to us. After exploring Helambu villages for a few more days, we will end the journey and return to Kathmandu, the capital.
Everest Panorama Trek
One of the pleasing trekking experiences to the Everest region with an extraordinary view of the tallest mountain in the world. The Everest Panorama Trek is a short trek through the Everest region in Nepal. This trek can be an alternative for those who are afraid of altitude sickness but also want to trek to Everest. Therefore this splendid package also falls under the best treks in January in Nepal. From the exceptional view of the majestic peaks to the extraordinarily famous town of the local Sherpa people, this trek has it all. The trek offers the warm hospitality of the locals, the typical Nepales cuisine, ancient monasteries, and gompas along with the exploration of the won’t range of flora and fauna. The remarkable view of Everest as well as other high peaks in the world is the major attraction of this trek. Similarly, one can explore a wide range of flora and fauna at the Sagarmatha National Park is breathtaking.
- A scenic flight to Lukla over the snow-capped peaks
- Pleasing and beautiful trek to the Everest region.
- Exploration of diverse flora and fauna in Sagarmatha National Park (UNESCO World Heritage site)
- The highlight destination of Sherpa; Namche Bazaar
- Rare and endangered species like musk deer and Himalayan Monal
- Ancient monastery and gompas that come along the way.
- Stunning sunrise and sunset view striking over the peaks of the Himalayas.
- Majestic view of peaks such as Mt. Lhotse(8,516m) and Cho Oyu (8,201m).
The trek begins with a 45 minutes flight to Lukla with the stunning scenario of the Annapurna Himalayan Range. Upon arrival, the trek takes you through the banks of the Dudh Koshi river to the gateway of Everest; Namche Bazaar. There are several things to do in Namche such as a side trek to Khumjung, exploring the Cheese factory, Edmund Hillary funded School, and Hospital. Besides, trekking to the highest Everest view hotel with a great view of Mt Everest and Ama Dablam is one of the most popular activities here. Then, the trails from Namche lead you to Tengboche. Apart from the view of Everest, Tengboche is mostly popular for ancient monasteries and gompas. From here, we will trek back to Namche crossing via suspension bridges and dense forests. Spotting local wildlife and enjoying the beautiful natural scenery in Sagarmatha National Park.
Ghorepani Poon Hill Trek
One of the most done treks in January in Nepal is Ghorepani Poon Hill Trek. It is one of the relatively easier treks to the beautiful ethnic village of the Annapurna region. The trek lets you access one of the culturally rich villages in Ghandruk with the stunning scenery of the Himalayas and natural landscapes. Likewise, one of the major highlights of this trek is the wonderful panoramic view of Dhaulagiri, Manaslu, Annapurna, and the other Himalayas. Apart from the natural scenario, the trek lets you explore the Gurung and Magar villages in Ghandruk and Ulleri. That will be an exceptional opportunity to explore people, their culture, traditions as well as way of life.
Ghorepani Poonhill trek accesses one of Nepal’s classic viewpoints of the Annapurna range. The trail passes through the forests of Rhododendron making your trek extra colorful and refreshing. This is a moderate-level trek and is suitable for everyone. The trails pass through terraced slopes, warm villages, and beautiful paddy fields. Poonhill is a Photographer’s paradise, where you can capture every moment of impressive Himalayan ranges.
- Exploration of UNESCO listed cultural heritage site in Kathmandu
- Stunning New of sunrise, as well as the sunset striking through the peaks, from Poon Hill 3210m
- Witness the Gurung and Magar settlement in Ghandruk and Ulleri
- Majestic view of Dhaulagiri, Manaslu, Annapurna, and the other Himalayas.
- Explore the popular tourist city, Pokhara, the lakes, caves, falls, and rovers here.
- Explore the culture and tradition of Gurung and Magar Community in Ghandruk
- Witness the typical Nepalese rural life
The trek starts with a scenic drive from Kathmandu to Pokhara. Then from Pokhara, the one and half hour drive take you to Nayapul and from there you trek for about 4-5 hours to Tikhedhunga. Likewise, from Tirkhedhunga, trek to Ghorepani at an altitude of 2874m. Witness the stunning natural landscapes, Himalayan view as well as local cultural exploration from here. Then, Trek for another 5 hours to Poon Hill and Tadapani and finally trek to Ghandruk, a popular Gurung Village. After spending some time here, trek back to Nayapul and drive to Pokhara.
Mardi Himal Base Camp
Mardi Himal base camp trek is one of the newest and recently discovered paradises in Nepal. Within a very short period, this trek has gained popularity among trekkers from around the world. Marsh Himal trek is a wonderful opportunity to immerse into Nepalese Himalayas with an exceptional view of the Annapurna region. The trek is suitable for those with limited time, it is the perfect length, just over a week long. Just east of Annapurna Base camp trek, Mardi Himal trek is a hidden gem of Nepal. The stunningly beautiful trek gets up close and personal with Annapurna South, Himchuli, Machhapuchhre, Gangapurna, Annapurna I, and Mardi Himal. As very few trekkers make their way to Mardi Himal’s Base Camp. From the base camp of Mardi Himal at 3580m, one can witness the close-up views of the entire Annapurna Range.
- Explore the capital city with its unique heritage sites ( UNESCO heritage sites)
- Hike in the Annapurna region peacefully with fewer crowds
- Mardi Himal base camp at 5587m.
- Enjoy the stunning views of Annapurna South, Hiunchuli, and other peaks
- Enjoy a relatively easy and moderate trek that many visitors overlook
- Immerse yourself in Nepali culture with a local homestay in the hills
The trail passes along the small steep paths, through a beautiful forest of Rhododendron flowers. Mardi trek can be done throughout the year. The winter trek to this final presents a stunning view of a clear mountain view, light snowfall, and stable weather.
Similarly, the trek commences from the beautiful city of Pokhara. Exploring the stunning city of Pokhara the trail then heads to Phedi where the trek begins. Then, the trek passes through Pothana, Forest Camp, and then to Low Camp. Likewise, trek to High camp at (3700m) then from here one can climb the Base Camp in 3-4 hours.
Khopra Danda Trek
If you are wondering for a little off-the-beaten-path with great views, then this trek is a great choice. Combining the best of Nepal, this trek offers an amazing mountain view, pastoral villages, and rice fields layered. Also, popular as the Khopra Ridge, this moderate trek is an adventure to the off-the-beaten-track. It can be a peaceful alternative to more popular treks in the region. Passing through several local villages, terraced farmland, and dense bamboo, oak, pine, and rhododendron forests, this trek presents the rewarding vistas of snow-capped Annapurnas. This also falls under the treks in January in Nepal.
- Enjoy a stunning sunrise view over Dhaulagiri and the Annapurnas
- Experience the local homestay and warm hospitality of the locals.
- Descend through ministerial villages to Tatopani
- Hike to sacred Khayer Lake
- Exploration of culture and way of life of people.
- Stunning sunset view from the summit of Muldai Hill
The trek starts with a scenic drive from Kathmandu to Pokhara. Explore the historic city Pokhara and trek to Ghandruk, the most popular village in the Annapurna region. From Ghandruk trek to Tadapani, a culturally rich village. Exploring the village, trek again to several villages in Dobato, Upper Chistibung, and finally reach Khorpe Danda at 3660m. Enjoy the views from the Korpe Danda and trek back to Swanta. From Swanta, trek to several villages in Ulleri, Nayapul, and finally to Pokhara.
If you want to explore the typical natural landscapes in Nepal within a short period then consider the Dhulikhel Nagarkot trek. The trek is near the valley and can be done in a relatively short amount of time. A short drive of 32 km will take you to Nagarkot, the nearest hill station from Kathmandu. The view from the hill station is astonishing. From here one can have a clear view of the entire valley as well as the view of the Himalayas such as Everest, Manaslu, Ganesh, Langtang, Jugal, Mahalangur range, etc. On the other hand, Dhulikhel is located 30km southeast of Kathmandu presenting a mesmerizing view of mountains such as Langtang, Lirung, Dorje Lakpa, Gauri Shankar, and Melungtse. Monasteries and Gompas are other major attractions here.
- Witness the sunrise and sunset view striking over the peaks of the Himalayas.
- Enjoy the scenic drive from Kathmandu-Nagarkot and Dhulikhel-Kathmandu
- Exclusive views of the Himalayas such as Everest, Manaslu, Ganesh, Langtang, Jugal, Mahalangur range, etc
- Explore the Newari community, their culture, and also their lifestyle
The hike starts with the early morning drive from Kathmandu to Nagarkot. The one and half hour drive takes us to Nagarkot from where we will catch the spectacular sunrise view striking over the peak of the Himalayas. From here, we will hike to Dhulikhel passing through several small settlements, pine forests, and farmlands. Likewise, a 5-hour hike takes you to the beautiful town in Dhulikhel. Here, you will visit Namo Buddha, a Buddhist pilgrimage site, Narayan temple, a sacred place for Hindu and old towns. Lastly, from Dhulikhel, you will drive back to Kathmandu.
Sundarijal Chisapani trek
Another nearest hike from the valley is Sundarijal Chisapani Hike. The hike is a combination of natural scenarios with typical local life, gorgeous Himalayan views, a captivating sunset, and sunrise from Chisapani to Sundarijal. This hike is short yet adventurous making an ideal vacation in a matter of one to three days.
- Majestic View of Langtang Lirung to Gaurishankar range including Dorje Lhakpa
- Passing through Crown Forest with Rhododendron, Nepal’s national flower.
- Short yet adventurous Hike in one day
- Exploration of several small settlements and the way of life of the people.
The journey starts with a short scenic drive from Kathmandu to Sundarijal. Sundarijal is a popular hangout place in the north of Kathmandu. It falls inside the boundary of Shivapuri National Park. Because of the forest of the National park, this place is cool shaded with tall trees and beautiful streams. Far away from the capital untouched by modernization, it is the perfect destination to hike peacefully. Leaving behind several small settlements, the hike goes through the forest to Chisapani. Likewise, Chisapani is a beautiful village that commands the broadest view of the large section of the Himalayan region. It is a place where people of every ethnic group are living in peace and harmony.
Tips for Treks in January in Nepal
January is one of the winter months in Nepal. Winter in Nepal is cold but not so extreme. Therefore, trekking in Winter is still possible in different regions of Nepal. There are several trekking destinations, where trekking in January is absolutely fine. However, certain tips and measures should be kept in mind before trekking in January.
Nothing can beat an early start when trekking to any part of the country. Especially during January, an early start can be useful. Starting early in the morning can make you reach your destination before the daylight ends.
Choose the destination
Though trekking in Nepal.is possible throughout the year, however, one must be careful about the place and season they choose to trek. There are several extreme level treks in Nepal, which is not a good option to list for January. On the other hand, moderate level trek or mid-altitude or lower altitude treks like Annapurna Panorama, Mardi Himal, or Ghorepani Poon Hill Trek can be done during January as well.
Packing according to the need
January is the winter month and winter means the temperature at higher altitudes will remain below 0°C. Therefore, you need to pack accordingly. Pack an extra layer of clothing including warm fleece, socks, gloves, head wears, footwear, and sleeping bag. Don’t pack unnecessary things as it will burden up and slow you down during the trek.
Hire a local sherpa guide
It is always a wise idea to choose a well-experienced guide if you need one. So for that, you can hire a local Sherpa guide so that you can have easy access to the roads and trails. Besides, hiring a local guide has a plus point in authentic interaction with the locals and their culture.