Langtang National Park
Area: 1710 km2
Buffer Zone: 420 km2
Langtang National Park was established in 1976 to conserve the unique flora and fauna of the region. It is the nearest national park to the capital Kathmandu in the Central Himalayan Region at the Nepal-China (Tibet) border. The Langtang area is best known for its pristine forests, high-elevation meadows of wild sheep, Tibetan-like culture, and lovely mountain views. The name "Langtang" comes from the story of the ancient Buddhist lama who followed his lost yak into the valley; "Lang" means "yak" and "Tang" means "follow".
Langtang is one of Nepal's unspoiled national parks, covering an area of 1,710 km2 and ranging in altitude from 1500 m to the summit of Mt. Langtang Lirung at 7246 m. As a result, the park has immense ecological diversity, with small communities scattered along the valley walls. Established in 1976 as the first Himalayan National Park of Nepal, Langtang covers three districts: Rasuwa, Nuwakot, and Sindhupalchowk, with 26 VDCs, and 1998 the Langtang National Park Buffer Zone was established. Langtang has over 70 glaciers of varying sizes, the Langtang and Ganesh Himal mountain ranges, and high-altitude lakes including Gosainkunda, Parvatikunda, Bhairavkunda, and Dudhkunda.
The park lies at the pinnacle as the meeting point between Indo-Malayan and Paleo-Arctic realms, which are embellished with the important ecosystems of both realms as conservation priorities. Langtang represents a good spectrum of vegetation types along with an altitude range between 1000 m and 7245 m. Landscapes produced by the complex topography, geological settings, and altitude can be experienced by walking three days from the Bhotekoshi River to Langsisa. Being the nearest Himalayan Park from the capital city of Kathmandu, it is the third most popular trekking destination among all protected areas in Nepal. The park's rich vegetation is characterised by the Sal (Shorea robusta) forest in the southern section of the park, and it is gradually taken over by hill forest (2000–2600 m) consisting of Chirpine, Rhododendrons, and Nepalese alder. The temperate zone (2600–3000 m) is covered mainly by oak forest, fading to old-growth forests of silver fir, hemlock, and larch in the lower subalpine zone (3000–3600m). The Nepalese larch, the only deciduous conifer in the region, is found in the park and in a few places elsewhere. Throughout these zones, different species of Rhododendron, and scrubs form a colourful under-story. Tree species such as birch, silver fir, Sorbus, and twisted Rhododendron are found near the tree line. All the 4000 m elevation, juniper, and Rhododendron shrubs (R. anthopogon) slowly dissolve into the expansive alpine grassland meadows.
The park is also well known for its populations of Red Panda, Himalayan black bear, Snow Leopard, wild dog, Ghoral, serow, and more than 250 species of birds.
Langtang Valley is an easy trail and moderate walk journey suitable for any age group is full of beautiful views at each step, and the flowing and refreshing sound of the Langtang River adds charm to the journey. Inhabited by the Sherpa and Tamang ethnic groups in the northern Himal region Langtang offers travelers a glimpse of the unique cultural heritage, Trans human lifestyle, and traditional butter production as the heart of the local economy. The Langtang valley is known for its pristine forests, beautiful flora and fauna with hamlets of communities scattered along the valley walls, Red Panda in the lush green bamboo forest, refreshing Rhododendron forest, blue sheep strolling high-elevation alpine, a combination of BonPo religion and Tibetan culture and lovely mountain range just in front of us.
Langtang Valley provides visitors with a glimpse of the region's unique cultural heritage as well as ecological diversity. Along with tourism, butter, and cheese production are major local economic activities. Beside Langtang village, the ancient Buddhist monastery town of Kyanjin Gompa (3584 m) is a spiritual site where dedicated Buddhist monks learn and perform their rituals. It is also a vibrant tourist destination to enjoy the warmth of the sun and natural beauty with different places to explore like a walk near a glacier, hiking to the RI (top) of Kyanjin RI and Tersko RI, which offer 360-degree views of the mountains, a walk near the airport and weather station and riverside, or a day trip to Langsila. Kyanjin will refresh your memory and inspire you to enjoy life and be near mountains often to enjoy this beautiful gift of God to humankind.
Langtang's "Yak Trail" and "Cheese Trail"
In Tibetan, "Lang" means "yak" and "Tang" means "follow" or "trail," meaning the name is associated with the ancient practice of Trans humans taking animals to different pasture lands for grazing at different seasons. Inhabited by the Sherpa and Tamang communities, different villages are named for different actions taken by Yak. Traditional butter production and its transport to Tibet remain at the heart of the local economy.
Mountains and Rivers "Naturally Majestic" "Adventure and Thrill"
Langtang Lirung 7425 m is the highest peak; Ghengu Liru (Langtang II 6571 m), Dorje Lakpa 6980 m, Gangchempo 6387 m, Naya-Kanga 5846 m, and Jugal Himal 6080 m are major mountains in Langtang National Park.
River Trishuli, one of the major tributaries of the Narayani River, originates in the western part of the park. The River Sunkoshi, one of the major tributaries of the Koshi River system, originates in the eastern part of Langtang.
At Kyanjin RI and Charku RI (RI means view top), we reach right next to Langtang Lirung (the highest peak in the Langtang region) with 360-degree views of mountains and glaciers.
Culture "Bon-Po" and "Tamang Heritage"
Langtang is known as one of the seven sacred valleys created by Guru Padmasambhava as a safe place from war, famine, and natural disasters and a place for mediation and knowledge. Langtang is an open museum to understand the culture of nature, BonPo religion, and Tamang culture. The Langtang Valley's inhabitants are thought to be descendants of Tibetans from Kerung who mingled with Tamang from the Helambu region.
Bon-Po is a pre-Buddhist ancient meditative Tibetan practice, a shamanistic religion characterized by mystical rituals, spells, sacrifices for gods and spirits, and spirit manipulation. The current traditions of Buddhism, such as prayer wheels, sky burials, prayer flags, spirit traps, festival dances, and rubbing holy stones, all come from the Bon religion.
Tamangs are one of the largest ethnic groups in Nepal. Tamang culture and customs are widely seen in the Langtang region. It is believed that "TAMANG" is a Tibetan word meaning horse traders. 'TA' means "Horse", ‘MANG' means "Trader". Tamang is traditionally Buddhist, with strong ties to Hindu culture and lower-land customs. Tamang Selo (melody) singing and dancing in Damphu (traditional musical instruments) keeps everyone tapping and dancing.
The trail "Easy and Fun"
The best part of the Langtang Trail is a very easy and moderate walk with a beautiful view at every step. The flowing and refreshing sound of the Langtang River adds charm to the journey. From Syabrubesi, we walk through Dovan, then to Bamboo to cross over to the Lama Hotel. From there, our journey moves towards Langtang Valley, a river corridor valley with a front view of Mt. Langtang Lirung. As we move forward, the highest point of the trek is Kyanjin Gompa, a holy, spiritual, and ancient Buddhist valley at 3800 m. It is one of the seven sacred valleys that is believed to have been meditated by Guru Padmasambhava. Visiting Kyanjin Gompa to see monks performing their rituals is truly a surreal experience. Visiting Glacier, walking towards Langsila (a holy place), exploring the river, and hiking to Kyanjin Ri (the top) at 4750 m and Charku Ri (the top) at 5000 m for a 360-degree view of surrounding mountains, river valleys, hills, and glaciers are some of the best ways to explore and see beautiful Langtang. Kyanjin Gompa is also the starting point for two of the world's most technically difficult high-altitude passes: Tillman Pass and Ganja La.
Langtang National Park: Easy and Refreshing
Day 1: Arrival in Kathmandu
On the day of your arrival, we will be there to pick you up from the airport and check you into your hotel. After that, you can take a rest, as you will probably be tired because of the long flight. If you arrive early, after taking some rest, you can walk around the places near your hotel and freshen up, do some last-minute shopping for things that you will need, or buy souvenirs.
Day 2: Preparation for trekking and Kathmandu sightseeing
On the second day, we will rise early and have breakfast, and the tour guide will brief you on your travel plans. Then we will begin our journey. We will first go to Swayambhu Maha Chaitya. We will arrange all the required travel permits before we head to explore Patan Darwar Square.
Day 3: Drive: Kathmandu to Syabrubesi
Today, after breakfast, we leave Kathmandu Valley for Syabrubesi to start our trek. Syabrubesi is about 120 kilometers from Kathmandu. In approx. 6-7 hours, we will reach Syabrubesi. The way to Syabrubesi is filled with greenery and hills, uphill and downhill, waterfalls, beautiful valleys, and mountain views. The local shops, locals doing daily chores, terrace farms, roaming animals, and the sound of rivers add charm to our journey. On our way, we will stop for lunch and refreshments.
At Syabrubesi, after the hotel check-in, we will explore Syabrubesi to learn more about the indigenous Tamang community and their ways of life. We will talk about our experiences and learn more about Langtang Valley, its culture, and its natural beauty from our host.
Day 4: Syabrubesi to Lama Hotel
Today is an exciting day; today we will be walking with our backpacks to Langtang Valley. After crossing the Bhote Koshi River, we enter the Langtang Valley trail by the side of Langtang Khola. We walk together through the forest with the sound of birds, the rustling of leaves and bushes, and the river Langtang.
At Dowan (the confluence of two rivers), we will have a cup of tea to rest and enjoy a small waterfall.
Then after we began to climb gently to reach the top of the hill, we had a beautiful view of the surrounding area. On the way, we might come across locals travelling to villages and back to Syabrubesi. After a short climb, the trail becomes easy, giving us time to reflect and think about beautiful nature, our mission of knowledge, and life away from a busy schedule.
At Bamboo, we will stop for lunch. While our lunch gets cooked, we will enjoy moments by the riverside and also explore local handicrafts and life. The bamboo area is a prime habitat for red pandas.
After lunch, we will cross the suspension bridge and climb up the hill to reach Rimche. From Rimche, the downhill walk will bring you to the Lama Hotel. At Lama Hotel, after some rest, we walk around nature, visit the riverside, and learn about the lifestyle of the people living there.
Day 5: Lama Hotel to Langtang
Another day, another adventure, after breakfast, we will cross over to the other side of the hill to reach the riverside. The forest trail is easy, which gives us time to understand the changing geography, tree patterns, birds, and surroundings. The landscape slowly changes to a mountain. In this trial, at one point, we will suddenly see Langtang Lirung framed in a tree branch.
At Riverside, the narrow valley starts opening up to more mountain landscapes. This area is famous for wild animals. From the riverside, the trail once again climbs up to reach Godha Tabela (Horse Castle). From Godha Tabela, we will have a wide view of Langtang Valley, the mountains, the waterfalls, and the fir forest. Godha Tabela is also the starting point of the mountain landscape. Here you can see the different trails we walked a couple of hours ago.
We will pass through a few small villages along the way, such as Thyangsep, and finally, we will reach Langtang Valley. An important note to know is that the Langtang Valley that we go to now is the new Langtang Valley that was shifted after the 2015 earthquake destroyed the old valley, which caused a great loss of human lives as well as the whole settlement. So on the way to the new Langtang Valley, you have to walk through the trail where the old valley used to be and see the one remaining house that remains standing to this day. Once you arrive at the Langtang Valley, you can use your free time to take a rest or go exploring as you experience local Tamang culture.
Day 6: Langtang to Kyanjin Gumba
Today we will begin our journey to Kyanjin Gumba. The walk to Kyanjin is the shortest of three days. By the time you arrive in Mundu, you will be surrounded by tall mountain peaks all around you. We will reach Kyanjin Gumba just in time for lunch. We will explore the historic Kyanjin area.
On the way, we will come across many Chortens, Stupas, and memorials dedicated to loved ones. The mantras carved in stones combine well with the panoramic surroundings. Those mantras are for a safe life from natural calamities and a sound and healthy life.
The weather gets cold and windy as evening time comes, which will be a great time to stay inside and enjoy the view from your hotel with a hot cup of coffee or tea.
Day 7: Kyanjin Gumba (day hike to Kyanjin RI)
In the morning, we will climb Kyanjin RI. At 4750 m above sea level, we will stand tall next to Langtang Lirung and witness the mountain environment.
Free time in the afternoon, to explore the culture and history of the Kyanjin area and Tibetan Buddhism. We will visit the cheese factory and learn about the culture of Tran’s humanism.
Day 8: Kyanjin Gumba to the Lama Hotel
On this day, we will leave Kyanjin Gumba and walk back to the Lama Hotel. This time we have a different view with folding hills on the horizon. More time to explore culture and nature
Day 9: Lama Hotel to Syabrubesi via Sherpa Gu
This is the final day of our trek, and we will use a different route to come to Syabrubesi. From Rimche, instead of going downhill towards Bamboo, we will take the upper route via Sherpa Gau.
From the top, we could see the other side of Langtang National Park, the flowing Langtang River and the trail we walked, and places we had stopped for rest and lunch. This is going to be a unique experience, and then we will trek back to Syabrubesi. You will be able to rest at the hotel as our trekking journey is coming to an end.
Alternative route: We can also take the same route back.
Day 10: Drive to Kathmandu
Early in the morning, we will drive back to Kathmandu, and check in to your hotel. You can have a free evening and explore the city and do some shopping and buy some souvenirs or relax going to the spa or engage in other fun activities such as yoga, paintings and so on.
Day 11: Kathmandu
We will have some fun activities planned for the day. Exploring the remaining places, getting immersed in culture and festivals, trying different cuisines, etc. After a long day of exploration, we will have a farewell dinner on the occasion of your beautiful journey with us.
Day 12: Onwards
On the day of departure, we will help you get to the airport and see you off. Hopefully, this won't be the end of the journey and we will see you again in the future.
NOTE: You can add one more day to go hiking on Tserko Ri in Kyanjin.