SOLO TRIP INSIGHT ABOUT NEPAL
Getting lost solo or wandering alone in nature comprising of strange landscapes, deep woods, and lush green vegetation is the new way of exploring self and nature. Be it the vast expanse of desert in Utah, or in the rain forests of Africa or strenuous trails of Nepal; simply, the solo way of exploration fascinates those travelers who want to experience the journey of finding themselves mixed with excitement and thrill.
Are you looking forward to undertake a solo trek/hike in Nepal? Or do you have that quest to get lost around the base of mountains, hilly terrains and plains of Terai in Nepal? If yes! You are in right place. :) Nepal, home to more than eight peaks above 8000m offers myriad of options regarding hiking and trekking and it's a land of diverse culture and people. Before anything, we must have few insights about Nepal and its people, culture, festive season and of course about the geography and weather so that you can make most out of your trip.
No doubt, Nepal is a safe country to travel alone or with your loved ones. However, there may be some strong considerations as well as precautions to be aware of and few basic ideas, information to be known in particular.
Solo treks in Nepal are generally not recommended especially for those first-timers. Every season there is news about the missing case of tourists in different corners of the country, mainly in Highlands. Meanwhile, two Taiwanese tourists are still missing around Langtang National Park. Such cases are bound to happen at any time as few parts of Nepal itself are not completely explored yet. Time cannot be the same as always, sometimes due to various reasons like physical weakness, accidents, natural calamities anyone can be a victim. Moreover, some trails are highly confusing which makes newcomers more prone to missing. One of the counterexamples of these scenarios is Mardi Himal Base Camp Trek. As this trek is mainly based on the ridges of Annapurna Conservation Area and interconnected paths leading other various destinations, which requires trekkers to be more informed and aware during the hike. New surroundings, high altitudes and confusing trails can lead to such mishaps.
It is highly recommended to take a local guide with you or sometimes local people. They will provide not only basic information about the place but also much more details from its history. :) Taking along a trained guide who has specialization on that route is the safest and efficient way to make your trek successful and fruitful one. Such professional guides which can be managed by various travel agencies have in-depth information about the route, altitude and special tips and tricks to survive any extremities.
Our few recommendations regarding travel agencies are:
Gosaikunda Trek (4380m): Sacred lake(s) of entire Nepal in Langtang Region
Some of you may have heard the word “kunda” which literally means “a sacred lake” in Nepali/Sanskrit. Now you got the idea about the name, Gosaikunda. It's a glacial freshwater lake which lies to the north of Kathmandu between Helambu and Langtang Valley which is also considered as the mainspring of Trishuli river. In the entire country, this trek is best for beginners who are looking forward to uncover the stunning beauty of Nepal accompanied by both adventure and spirituality.
There is no denying that Gosaikunda Trek is the gem of Langtang National Park and jewel of Nepalese trekking routes. The trail, local people, sign-posted paths and numbers of holy lakes alike Gosaikunda are some salient features of this trek. Moreover, this trek can be undertaken within a short span of time i.e. 4/5 days. It can be a good pick for those newbie trekkers to explore high altitude and breathe into thin air.
Quick Overview of Gosaikunda Trek:
- Duration: 5 to 7 days (depends)
- Difficulty range: Medium
- Maximum Altitude: 4,610m
- Suitable Season: All season except core winter.
- Main attractions: Mountains' views, alpine freshwater glacial lakes, delighted forests.
- Ethic settlements en route: Tamang and Tibetans.
- Stunning views of Himalayan Panorama, peaks and land of Tibet.
- MoreKundaslike Gosaikunda, Bhairabkunda, Suryakunda, and many more.
- Langtang National Park, wildlife and lush green vegetation.
- Exotic 108 Kunda/Lakes of different sizes which are frozen six months a year. (October to June).
Gosaikunda receives not only those trekkers but also trekkers with a specific religious belief too. Every season during the month of August in Janai Purnima legions of pilgrimage including many international tourists visit this holy lake. For locals, Kunda is the sacred place to bathe and worship. Especially, Hindus and (Buddhists) Shamans visit this place from the religious perspective.
It is believed that Gosaikunda was created by Lord Shiva himself as he needed to extinguish the poison from his throat. One interesting fact about this lake is during the winter season the lake is frozen and seems white in while during summer it melts and seems blue.
In Hindu religion, lakes and ponds are treated as sacred thus worshiped due to their divine origin and association with deities.
Visiting holy lakes, bathing there and worshiping Gods are some routines of Hindus which they think they can wash away sins and purify their soul. The placid water is not just a pool or pond instead it is a manifestation of Gods. It symbolizes the life of creatures. Stagnant water of Kunda is a world itself.
On the flipped side, water can be taken as the source or simply origin of fertility. Moreover, it also represents life, death, and resurrection. The freshwater lakes can be taken as a reflection which is like a mirror to self-contemplation.
Therefore, hiking up to such a place having numerous myths and faiths can be a boon to your entire life. Breathing into thin air of high Himalayas, soaking in the early sun, thinking about resolutions of future with a sip of the coffee, breathtaking vista of hills and Himalayas, getting insights about the authentic lifestyle of locals, treading under the shadows of fluttering prayers flag will rejoice anyone's life. There is no single ray of doubt. :)
Outline Itinerary of 5 days:
Note: This itinerary is based on 7 to 8 hours regular hike per day. So, it may not be efficient to all.
Day 01: Drive from Kathmandu to Barkhu and trek to Thulo Syabru (2260m).
Day 02: Trek from Thulo Syabru to Cholang Pati (3600m)
Day 03: Trek to Gosaikunda (4380m)
Day 04: Descend down to Dhunche(2100m).
Day 05: Drive back to Kathmandu.
Info: Gosaikunda can also be reached via Sundarijal but it takes about a week. You can see below which is the extended version of 5 days long above-mentioned itinerary.
Extended Itinerary of 7 days:
Day 01: Drive from Kathmandu to Sundarijal (1463m) and trek up to Chisapani(2194m).
Day 02: Chisapani to Tuksang.
Day 03: Tuksang to Ghopte. Overnight at Ghopte(3430m).
Day 04: Ghopte to Gosaikunda
Day 05: Hike to Suryakunda (4610m) and trek to Cholangpati.
Day 06: Cholangpati to Dhunche.
Day 07: Drive back to Kathmandu from Dhunche.
Best time to visit:
As this alpine freshwater lake is located at an altitude of 4,380 meters above from the sea level, it is a bit hard to be there during core winter. Hence, the best seasons to pay a visit to this serene Lake District are Autumn and Spring season. We can also trek up to the lake at the end of February to the beginning of June. Moreover, it also feels good during the month of July and August; Nevertheless, the view will be a bit blurry during monsoon season.
Gosaikunda Weather Info:
Weather around the Langtang Region changes frequently in an erratic fashion. It's unpredictable and can change within a short period i.e. may be within some minutes. Hence, we highly recommend to all visitors coming to Nepal to manage all the necessary stuff. Warm clothes, an extra pair of socks, medicines, first aid kits, raincoat, hiking boots, trekking bags, and some foods are mandatory in a trek.
Gosaikunda Trek Map:
As seen on the map, there are two ways to access the holy lake. That means one can go through Syabru Besi and return via the other way i.e. through Sundarijal which is the best route.
Gosaikunda Trek Cost:
Mainly, this trek is more popular with pilgrimages from India and Nepal. Hence, it's crowded in peak season (During August). In order to visit Gosaikunda, tourists have to take permit from Nepal Tourism Board, located at Kathmandu. The net trekking cost per person depends upon that individual's way of frugality and lavishness. However, USD 450 to 550 per person will suffice which includes meals, accommodation, transportation, and a tourist guide.
Gosaikunda is an alpine freshwater holy lake which is located in Rasuwa district's Langtang National Park and is also included in Ramsar(wetlands) sites of Nepal since 2007.
If you have a short span of time in your pocket but have that quest to explore the strange landscapes of Nepal, then you should visit or plan a trip to Gosaikunda. Most importantly, trails which lead to Kunda are well sign-posted and locals are also amiable regarding the route information. This trek is also known as Langtang Trek or Langtang Gosaikunda Trek.
This route can be easily solo trekked if you have that intense pursuit of getting lost alone. It's a tea house-styled trek so one can get foods and drinks easily. To be more transparent, it is one of the well-managed trekking routes. Just you need to be ready to explore it. Getting lost in nature alone, thinking about one's life will add extra sweet flavors to life which further adds a different perspective. One can recognize himself or herself in a better way. The solo trip normally pushes us to our new limits by exposing our weakness as well as strengths.
Don’t just read. Come and Witness!