Top 10 Trails in Sikkim for High Altitude Trekking Adventure

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Trails in Sikkim for High Altitude Trekking Adventure

Home to the mighty Kanchenjunga, Sikkim is one of the finest places for high altitude trekking in India. The ever so scenic destination offers best of Himalayan mountains to those who find comfort in conquering lofty peaks and their fears. The trails of high altitude treks add further to the allurement of trekking in Sikkim. Often comprising of picturesque valleys, expansive meadows, high mountain passes, lakes and sparkling rivers, and the lush forests, these 5 and 4thousander trails extend a warm welcome to the trekkers. Therefore, if at all you consider high altitude trekking in India, the Northeastern state of Sikkim is ideal option as it will surely accelerate that adrenaline rush in your body, for which you have been waiting all along! Here is a guide to high altitude trekking trails in Sikkim:

1. Trekking to Goecha La, with guts

goecha la trek

This is one of the most popular guided trekking trips that are undertaken by lots of Indians and foreign travelers each year. This pass is situated at an altitude of 4939 meters, and you will have a plethora of scenes to enjoy, as you start trekking from Yuksom to Goecha La. Along with views of the Himalayas, you can also have a panoramic view of the other glacial peaks of Kanchenjunga, Mount Pandim and Mount Jopuno, as you start climbing across the Goecha la.

It should be your primary concern to keep a notice about the weather condition, as the Himalayas are known for constant weather fluctuations. You can contact with local mountaineering associations to remain updated about the weather condition. Click here for detailed itinerary.

Altitude: 4939 meters

Duration of trek: 11 days approx.

Grade: moderate to slightly steep

Beat Season: March – May & September – November

Base camp: Yuksom

How to reach: Take a cab from Gangtok and reach Yuksom. Taxis and cars are also available from Bagdogra airport or from NJP railways.

2. Magic unexplored: Green Lake trek

Green Lake Trek

The Green Lake Trek is one of the top trekking destinations in Sikkim. Although this place receives lesser footfall when compared to the other destinations, it is rich for its scenic beauty, comprising green meadows strewn across the neat velvety layers of white snow. This place is famous for its biodiversity and you can thoroughly enjoy the scoops of the Himalayan trail and beautiful winding meadows as part of the Green Lake Trek. The pulsating panorama of natural scenes will remain etched in your memory forever. Click here for detailed itinerary.

Altitude: 5050 meters

Duration of trek: 15 days approx.

Grade: Slight moderate to higher levels

Base camp: Lachen

Beat Season: April & October

How to reach: Take a cab or hire a car from Gangtok. It is 135 km.

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3. Trekking to Kanchenjunga base camp

Kanchenjunga Base Camp Trek

As the name, itself suggests, this is one of the most popular treks in Sikkim. If you are a fan of adventure tourism, then you must opt for this trek. According to some expedition experts, this tour from Yuksom is one of the most dangerous ones, as there are four heavy glaciers that are part of the terrain. February to May is the ideal time to do Kanchenjunga trekking. You have to take a serpentine snowy road covering Tshoka, Thangsing, Dzongri, Lamuney, Goecha La, Samiti, and finally, Kokchorung. From here, you will savour not just the view of Kanchenjunga, but also of other peaks. Click here for detailed itinerary.

Altitude: 5086 meters

Duration of trek: 13 days maximum

Grade: Moderate to high steep slopes

Beat Season: March – May & September – November

Base camp: Yuksom

How to reach: You can take a cab from Bagdogra airport or from NJP Railway Station and reach Gangtok. Thereafter travel to Yuksom.

4. Man and the mountain: The Kasturi Orar trek

Kasturi Odar Round Trek

If you have been dreaming about the glacial pitfalls, chunks of ice all around and an adventurous trail that will set a new rhythm inside your heart, then the Kasturi Orar Round Trek is the ideal one for you. Goecha La is one of the most mesmerizing starting spots, which will take you to attractions like Thangsing Valley, Dzongri, meandering its way and ending at Tashiding. The place is famous for the Kanchenjunga National Park and a rich biosphere reserve which will make you fall in love with the nature.

If you are preparing for a high-altitude hike like this, then you must carry drinking water and proper boots and emergency medicines with you. Kasturi Orar region gives you the perfect blend of Nepali culture in all its dimensions, and you can explore the slopes of Mt. Pandim or else, walk across the remote villages in Sikkim, when you become part of the best high elevation hiking treks in India.

Altitude: 5002 meters

Duration of trek: 15 to 16 days approx.

Grade: Slightly moderate to difficult at times

Beat Season: March – May & September – November

Base camp: Yuksom

How to reach: From Gangtok, you can take a cab to Yuksom. From NJP Station or from the Bagdogra Airport, the time taken to travel to Gangtok is approximately 5 to 6 hours.

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5. Trekking to the coldest points of Lhaba Tarum Tsachu

Lhaba Tarum Tsachu

Photo: https://goo.gl/fYgqcg

Traditionally, the Lhaba Tarum trek was considered to be the best high altitude trekking in Sikkim undertaken by specialist hikers and adventurers. Along with vast and undulated green landscapes and crystal clear lakes, you also find the perfect thrill and enchantment if you travel to this place with a large group. Several foreign expeditions have already been undertaken to this area, in the last few years. As a trekking route of Sikkim, this place is dotted with prayer flags installed at different spots, especially around the Tarum hot spring. From the Lhaba Tarum Tsachu, Mt. Kanchenjunga is merely 16 km of distance, which you can cover by foot. However, the condition is that, you need to have a proper porter along with sufficient emergency resources, when you undertake this high altitude trekking in Sikkim.

Altitude: 2650 meters

Duration of trek: One week approx.

Grade: Mild to slightly difficult

Beat Season: March – May & September – November

Base camp: From Lachung, you have to travel to Tsethang to Cave Camp. Then finally, you can reach Tarum Tsachu.

How to reach: You can travel from Gangtok to Lachung, which is situated in the northern part of Sikkim. From there, you can hire a professional trekking guide to carry on rest of the expedition.

6. Ruminating about the Rhododendrons: The Rhododendron trek in Sikkim

Rhododendron Trek

When it comes to offering plenty of natural beauty to the travelers, Sikkim is no exception. Late January to early May is the ideal time for the blossoming of colorful Rhododendrons that enhance the scenic beauty of Sikkim to almost thousand times. From the placid snow-covered landscape that you find in Yuksom, to walking along narrow winding village roads strewn with rhododendrons of different colours, this place is an ideal platform for trekking adventure in Sikkim.

Spring is the season of fruition in hills, and you can almost experience a burst of colours and smells that will appeal to your finer senses. With the Rhododendron trek, you will be transformed into a bird and butterfly lover all at once. There are different varieties of Rhododendrons, which abound here: Arboreum, Falconeri, Barbarum Campanulatium. Along with that, you can also have a glimpse of the simple hamlets of Sikkim. You can rest for a while or two in the small cottages, if your feet feel tired.

Altitude: 3650 meters

Duration of trek: About 10 to 11 days

Grade: Easy start, which gradually winds up to a moderate level

Beat Season: March – May & September – November

Base camp: Yuksom

How to reach: First you have to reach Gangtok form NJP Station, or from Bagdogra Airport. Then from Gangtok, take a cab or the government conveyance to reach Yuksom in approximately four to four and half hours.

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7. Singalila and Goecha La trek: Bask in the glory of nature

Singalila Ridge Trek

If you want a great combination of tea valleys, picturesque gardens, mountains and a beautiful serene natural landscape all around you then Singalila and the Goecha La trek are the best options for you. Along with oak trees and rhododendrons, you also find a change in climatic conditions and the natural beauty varies accordingly. Once you find a clear cloudless sky, and at other times, your senses will be captured by the dense rain clouds in the sky.

While you undertake this trek, you will get the best view of the Kanchenjunga Range. The transition from green forest cover to the colourful rhododendron gardens will really make your trek worthy. You can contact with a tour operator for any guided trekking trips to Singalila and Goecha La. Singalila is the bifurcation point that actually demarcates the western parts of Sikkim along with Darjeeling and Nepal.

Altitude: 4940 meters

Duration of trek: This is a long trek covering almost more than 18 to 19 days.

Grade: Slightly moderate to difficult at times.

Beat Season: March – May & September – November

Base camp: Take a jeep from Gangtok and travel to Uttarey. There are some of the finest bridges when you travel to Uttarey, and you can stay in a trekking lodge on the first day and start walking the next day.

How to reach: Numerous buses and sharing cabs are available to Gangtok from NJP station, or from Bagdogra.

8. Discover paradise: Yambong Singalila trek

Yambong Singalila Trek

Photo: https://goo.gl/aSRgcy

Walking and trekking holidays can never be complete if you do not go for a hiking trip to Yambong Singalila. This trek comprises sighting of several peaks, like Mt. Everest, Mt. Makalu, Mt. Lhotse located in Nepal, Mt. Siniolchu of Sikkim, and Mt. Kanchenjunga, which extend to almost 7000 meters. This is a place, which infested with several species of wild animals, like the Red Panda, the Himalayan sheep, the Himalayan Monal and the red pheasant. Lower Yambong, Upper Yambong and Gomathang are some of the most notable places, which you will find as part of your trek.

Among the top trekking destinations, you find that the Yambong Singalila trek is an ideal one, and you must consult a professional who can conduct the trek quite carefully.

Altitude: 4940 meters

Duration of trek: You will need at least 12 days to cover the entire region.

Grade: Mild steep to high difficulty level.

Base camp: Nambu village in Sikkim

Beat Season: March – May & September – November

How to reach: You have to reach Yuksom from Gangtok. You can take a car from Gangtok to Yuksom and then start trekking. You must take sufficient resources with the porter or with yourself.

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9. The Dzongri Nambu trek

Dzongri Nambu trek

If you are willing to undertake trekking adventure in Sikkim then you can surely opt for the Dzongri Nambu Trek, which is one of the best trekking destinations in the whole world. Along with the scenic beauty that is both rough and attractive, you will find peaks like Kabru, Singalila and Frey, when you traverse the winding roads and cross the small hamlets that are dotted along the roads. This trek is the perfect one for both amateurs and veterans. It is also one of the most sought-after destinations chosen by ace travel bloggers.

Altitude: About 4000 meters

Duration of trek: 12 to 13 days approx.

Grade: Mild to levels of high difficulty

Base camp: Tigabla (3825 meters)

Beat Season: March – May & September – November

How to reach: You can consult a tour operator for professional guides, and take a cab to Gangtok, and then to Yuksom. Share jeeps are available from NJP station or from Bagdogra airport.

10. Visit the vibrant valley of flowers in Varsey

valley of flowers in Varsey

Photo: https://goo.gl/FiHGA0

For the Varsey Trek, you must have a well-drawn out map, and a professional guide who can guide you for this high altitude trekking in Sikkim. This place is meant more for the nature enthusiasts and less for the hardcore trekking specialists. However, with rhododendrons, honeybees, and birds of myriad varieties, Varsey is one of the best places for trekking. With seasonal flowers, hanging wild mosses and several endemic species, Varsey is one of the best places for trekking. Just drive for about 17km to Damthung and then a mere 12 km to Varsey, and the exotic Sikkimese culture will be visible right in front of your eyes.

Altitude: 3060 meters

Duration of trek: 6 to 7 days approx.

Grade: Moderate

Beat Season: March – May

Base camp: Damthang

How to reach: Drive slowly from Gangtok, till you reach Damthang, from where your next session to Varsey starts.

Well, we hope our list provided you with ample high altitude trekking options in Sikkim. If you think we have been of help, don’t forget to LIKE and SHARE this blog. And in case visiting Sikkim is in your mind, you can allow us to help you plan a trip. We ensure to offer best holiday as well as trekking tour packages that are affordable and can be customized as per your need. To get quotation from us call at +91-9212553106/07 or drop us an email at info@tourmyindia.com.

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About

Having an experience of more than 16 yrs in the Himalayas, Arun is the main driving force & mentor at the Peak Adventure Tours, a leading adventure travel agency in India offers trekking tours in Indian Himalayas including Nepal, Bhutan & Tibet. A long history with exceptional experiences he is the “Marathon Man” in the field of adventure. Today Arun looks after the Peak Adventure and shapes & designs the venture of the organization. He is contributing to this blog as a regular guest author.


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