Among the roads less traveled by mainstream trekkers, Langtang Valley is the perfect choice for a relatively lower altitude trek, still in the shadows of the great Himalayas. Although in close proximity with the Kathmandu valley, which is only about four hours’ drive from the capital (only about 130 kilometers north near the Nepal-Tibet border), it is as untouched and pristine as you can find it – an exotic, rural destination. It is moderately a shorter trek; however, it may lengthen to up to three weeks if combined with a supplementary journey to Helambu Valley and Gosainkunda Lake, an alpine freshwater lake popular among the Hindus believed as the abode of Lord Shiva and Gauri. Other popular lakes in the region include Parvatikunda, Bhairavkunda, and Dudhkunda, all with religious significance.
The trail runs in the foothills of Langtang Lirung (7,245 meters), the highest peak in the region, while other smaller peaks are to the south, like Chimse Danda, Ganja La pass, Jugal Himal, and Dorje Lakpa. The Langtang River passes through the Langtang valley before blending into the bigger Bhote Koshi River, whereas other bigger rivers originating in Tibet also run through this region in their incipient forms. Moreover, there are about 70 glaciers of different sizes that run through or are parallel to the route.
The trail runs through Nepal’s oldest national park, Langtang National Park. With 14 vegetation types in 18 ecosystem types, the region displays immense diversity of vegetation. You can observe dense bamboo forests, and crimson rhododendrons adorning your way. Also, the diverse wildlife includes a range of migratory birds, monkeys, deer, tahr, and pika. In addition, the route also enables travelers to intimately explore the lives and lifestyles of the Tamang people, the ethnic community living in the periphery of the Kathmandu valley. It is, therefore, the finest concoction of landscapes and cultural excursion.
If you are seeking an equally thrilling trek with less traffic of trekkers, but with an unparalleled blend of ecological, geographical, and cultural riches, Langtang Valley Trek could be the ideal one to choose! The best season to travel would be autumn (mid-September to mid-December), and spring (March to May), when the days are warm and the scenes spectacular, and the nights a bit chilly. Other winter months are also appropriate though the temperatures might be a little harsh.