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Makalu Base Camp Trek

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20 days
Availability : October through May
Min Age : 15+
Home » Holiday Packages » Makalu Base Camp Trek

Take a journey to the rugged heights of the Himalayas with Makalu Base Camp Trek. Discover incredible, breathtaking landscapes dotted with charming villages and snow-capped peaks as far as the eye can see. Uncover the unique culture and traditions of Nepal along the way and explore nature in its purest form at the base of Mount Makalu—the world’s fifth-highest mountain.

The Makalu Base camp trek, situated in the east of Nepal, is one of the most enjoyable hikes in Nepal. Enjoy the stunning scenery while hiking through lush forests and pastures.

The Makalu Base Camp trek is a popular trekking destination in Nepal. It lies 5,416 metres above sea level and is situated in the lap of the rugged Himalayas of Mt. Makalu, the 5th tallest mountain in the world

To begin the trek, you will fly from Kathmandu to Tumlingtar. And the trek begins from Num and ends in Num, a tiny village, after a drive from Khandbari via Tumlingtar. 

When to go for Makalu Base Camp Trek?

The best time to visit the Makalu Base camp is between October and Mid December and between March and May. 

Trekking Seasons in Nepal

The trekking season in Nepal is from March to May and October to December, which is a considerably good time. However, June to September is not recommended due to the monsoon time.


During the trek excursion, you will stay in tea house lodges. The rooms are very basic on the trek route. 

Food During the Makalu Base Camp Trek:

You will have breakfast, lunch, and dinner while on the trek. The food items served in these meals vary according to the location. For example, you may find local dishes in some places, whereas you will get continental food in others. Unfortunately, vegetarian food is not easily available on the trek.


There are regular flights from Kathmandu Tumlingtar. Flight booking and all travel logistics support are included when you book this trip with us. From Tumlingtar, your guide will arrange local transportation on a jeep to Num. From here, you will start your journey to Makalu Base Camp.

Mt. Makalu is the 5th highest peak in the world among the other 14 peaks above 8000 metres. Similar to other trekking routes, the Makalu Base camp trek has become popular for wilderness trekking in the Himalayas region of Nepal. We have allocated 20 days for the trek, including 3 nights in Kathmandu, which will be enough to acclimate and cover up any delays in unavoidable circumstances. So, your trek adventure starts after a flight from Kathmandu to Tumlingtar! From Tumlingtar, you will take a local jeep to Num, which takes 4 – 5 hours on a bumpy road. However, you cannot continue driving to Num if you go on a trek at the beginning of post-monsoon or early October. Thus, you may need to terminate the driving somewhere in Manebhanjyang or Chihiro. That’s why we have allocated 2 days to reach Num in case of any delay.

Your real adventure starts from Num (1560m)

  1. Through traditional Rai and other local community villages, you will trek down to the Arun River valley and uphill to Seduwa, Tashigaou, and Khongma.
  2. You will cross 3 passes, including Shipton La (4170m). You will see impressive views of the Himalayas, including Mt. Makalu, from the passes.
  3. You will trek down the Barun River valley through the rhododendron forest and finally reach Makalu Base camp.

After visiting the Makalu Base Camp, you will return to Num following the same track route.

On the trek program, you will have the flexibility of staying at local teahouses and tents.

During the trek, you will have:

  • An English-speaking guide.
  • Kitchen helper.
  • The required number of porters.

The Makalu Base Camp trek is truly excellent in the Himalayan region!

Learn the essential tips and tricks to make your trip more enjoyable

Whether you are a first-time trekker or a seasoned traveller, Makalu Base Camp Trek will be an unforgettable experience. 

To make your journey as enjoyable and stress-free as possible, research the current weather conditions before you go and come armed with the proper gear and clothing to enjoy your trek without hassle. Additionally, listen to local guides, for instance, NepalHiking.com, for advice about navigating the terrain and staying safe in unfamiliar territory. With these tips in mind, you will have an incredible time uncovering the wonders Makalu offers.

Pre-plan Your Route, Guide and Accommodations

Before your trek, research the best route, guides, and accommodations. For example, check if any teahouses are available to sleep at along your planned trail. And booking the trip months in advance can be useful to secure your accommodation, guide and porters. Planning will make all the difference in enjoying a memorable and comfortable hiking experience!

Choose Appropriate Equipment for the Makalu Base Camp Trek

Ensure you have good trekking equipment just in case of unexpected weather conditions. In addition, you should select appropriate and suitable clothing and equipment to make the most of your trekking experience. Sturdy hiking or trekking shoes are essential since they assist in navigating tricky terrain while keeping your feet well-protected at all times. 

It would help if you also considered packing extra layers in case of weather changes along the trail. A daypack is a great investment since it leaves your hands free as you traverse different paths. Finally, remember to bring a light rain jacket, hat, gloves and warm socks for cold nights – these will be very useful for staying comfortable during sudden temperature drops!

Prepare Physically and Mentally for the Trek

It would be best if you prepared physically and mentally for the trek. Start walking or jogging weeks before you go. It can help with acclimatization and get your body used to long days of strenuous activity. It is also important to learn about proper nutrition and hydration to give yourself the best chance of success while on the trail. Talk with someone who has already completed the Makalu Base Camp Trek to understand better what lies ahead!

Pack Lightly and Use a Backpack Comfortably

When it comes to your gear, pack lightly. Quality is always more important than quantity, and having the right gear will give you a much better experience on the trail. Additionally, you must ensure that your backpack is comfortable and fitted correctly to ensure that it doesn’t cause unnecessary strain or injury on your body as you walk up the mountains.

Tour Details

Here are some highlights of the trek!

Departure & Return Location

Kathmandu, Capital city of Nepal

Departure Time

09.00 AM to 10.00 AM (flexible)

Price Includes

  • Airport pick up / drop off by car
  • 3 nights accommodation with breakfast at tourist standard hotel in Kathmandu
  • Experienced guide and required number of helpers
  • Semi lodge / camping arrangments (lodges will be provided whereever possible, if not tented camp)
  • Locally available meals (breakfast, lunch and dinner)
  • All Internal flight arrangemet
  • All Trek logistics including permits, transportation etc..

Price Excludes

  • Lunch and dinner in Kathmandu
  • Personal expenses
  • Trek insurance (please ensure you have full cover travel insurance that covers air ambulance, medical expenses, etc.)
  • Staff Tipping


  • Trekking Duffle Bag
  • Trekking Map
  • Company T-Shirt
  • Farewell Dinner
What to Expect

Here is a list of trek highlights which you can expect on this trek.

  • Stunning view of Landscape from lowland to highland
  • Warm welcoming and Greetings from smiling people wherever you are!
  • Magnificent view of Mt. Makalu and other snowy peaks
  • Cross the high passes of Keke La (4125m) & Shipton La (4170m)
  • The trek is suitable for experienced trekkers, who have already trekked in Nepal or who can can walk for 6-7 hours a day.
  • Trekkers will only carry a light day bag for day uses and big duffle bag or rucksack will be carried by our porters
  • An English speaking experienced guide will be accompanied
  • Accommodation will be at tea houses or tented camp
  • Locally available meals will be served during the trek


Day 1Arrival in Kathmandu

Upon your arrival at Tribhuwan International Airport (TIA), you will be met by our Airport Representative and transferred to the hotel. Overnight at the hotel, inclusive of breakfast.

Day 2Kathmandu (Final Preparation Day)

Final trek preparation. Overnight at the hotel, inclusive of breakfast.

Day 3/4Fly to Tumlingtar either drive to Num or Trek to Num (4-5 hours driving)

Flight Kathmandu to Tumlingtar, then drives by local jeep to Num (1560m).
Drive to the airport to board your flight to Tumlingtar (410m). On a clear day, we can see the Himalayan ranges.

Upon arrival at Tumlingtar airport; we will arrange a local jeep and drive along the ridges of Khandbari (the headquarter of Shangkhuwasabha district) and Manebhanjyang (1100m) and along the picturesque local villages of Bhotebas (1740m), Gogane (1720m) and Chichira (1980m); from where we can see good views of Mt. Makalu and other snowy peaks.

The road is bumpy and muddy; thus, in monsoon or pre-monsoon (July – early October), there may not be possible to continue the drive to Num. So, we may need to terminate the driving before reaching Num. Thus, we need to allow 2 days to reach Num.

Overnight at a tent or guesthouse, inclusive of breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Day 5Trek to Seduwa (1500m)

The Seduwa village is situated parallel to Num; we can see from Num on the other side of the Arun river just above. From here, we descend to the Arun river (760m), following the scattered houses, rice terraces, and the jungle before reaching the bridge over the Arun River (1:30 hour descent). As we crossed the suspension bridge, we ascended 800m to reach Seduwa by following some scattered villages of Belghari, which took us another 2:30 hours.

Seduwa is a nice small village, having settlements of Rai and the local community. There is also a high school and the Makalu Barun National Park, where we must register our trek permits.

Overnight at a tent or guesthouse, inclusive of breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Total 4 – 5 hours walking.

Day 6Trek to Tashigaou (2100m)

Today we walk through many small thatched scattered houses by following rice terraces and sometimes through dense forests of a different kind of vegetation. The trail gradually leads up and down by crossing some streams along the trail until we reach Tashigaou. It is a lovely village, having 3 nice guesthouses, some nice camping spots, and the last day walking through the villages.

Overnight at a tent or guesthouse, inclusive of breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Total 4 – 5 hours walking.

Day 7Trek to Khongma (3500m)

As we leave the last village of the trek, we walk through the dense forest of a different kinds of vegetation. We can only hear the voice of birds chirping here and there. The trail gradually leads us uphill by following the streams and wooden logs. After a 2 hours continuous walk, we arrive at Danda Kharka (2650m); there are a few teahouses, an ideal place to stop for lunch.

From here, the trail leads uphill until arriving at Wishisa (3110m, 45 minutes walk). After that, we climbed up again until arriving at another pass called Kongma Danda (3500m, 45 minutes walk). After a short descent and ascending, we arrive at our camp, Khongma.

Overnight at a tent or guesthouse, inclusive of breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Total 4 – 5 hours walking.

Day 8/9 Acclimatization day or continue the trek to Dobato (3862m) with 3 passes

The height we gain, 3500m at Khongma, is quite high. Therefore, if we feel discomfort sleeping overnight at the elevation, it is ideal to spend an extra night here. If we decide to spend an additional night, we make a day trip to higher elevations, explore the surrounding forest, and enjoy the views of nature and mountain range views.

On the other hand, if we feel alright and have no symptoms of altitude, it would be better to continue the trek. We have the flexibility about what to do and what not to do!

The first view of Mt. Makalu

As we leave Khongma, we ascend to Gongar la (3600m, 30 minutes walk), having a nice stupa with prayer flags and a nice resting place for porters. On a clear day, we can see excellent views of Mt. Makalu, Chamling, Baruntse, Kanchenjunga and Jannu. From here, we walk along the ridge slightly down and uphill until we reach Kalopokhari (black lake) for another 30 minutes. From here, we ascend another 45 minutes to reach another pass Shipton La (4170m).

After a few hundred meters downhill, we arrive at Thulo Pokhara (big lake); it is a crystal lake! Besides the lake, there is a memorial stupa and a few houses for yak herders. After we cross a stream that flows from the lake, we climb up again for another 30 minutes and arrive at the last pass of Keke La (4125m). From the pass, we descend following the rocky trail and rhododendron forest to Dobato (3862m, 1-hour walk). If you come in March / April, this valley is paradise in blossoms of rhododendron flowers.

Dobato (Crossroad in English) is situated amidst the rhododendron forest and pine trees with few teahouses and a small camping spot. On a clear day, we can witness the view of Jannu Himal in the far east.

Overnight at a tent or guesthouse, inclusive of breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Total 4 – 5 hours walking.

Day 10Trek to Yangle Kharka (3540m)

The trail descends to Barun Khola through rhododendron forest and some nice meadowlands. It is steep ascends to reach the bank of the Barun River, which takes approximately 1 hour. From here, we walk along the Barun river bank. We also have to walk through the landslide path (Be careful, the rock may fall! it takes approximately 1 hour to complete the landslide section). It is quite a tricky path until we complete the landslide section.

As we walk further after completion of the landslide path section, we arrive at a large meadow surrounded by pine trees where there is a teahouse (a good place to stop for lunch) just above the soaring Barun River. Just in front, we will see the snowy peak of Chamlang. After another 2 hours of walking by following the river, we arrive at the wider valley, surrounded by pine trees and waterfalls; this place is not other than Yangle Kharka.

On another side of the valley, just above the river, we can see 2 caves. On full moon day in August, a fertility festival is held in the cave and surrounding the valley. It is believed that the famous Buddhist sage Ringboche had resided in the cave. It is also believed that any couple with no child can have a child after paying homage to Rimpoche in the cave. The belief still exists in the local people.

Overnight at a tent or guesthouse, inclusive of breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Total 5 – 6 hours walking.

Day 11Trek to Langmale (4410m)

From here, we walk, keeping the Barun river on our left side. The trail gradually goes up, and we walk through the rhododendron and pine forest. After an hour of continuous walking, we reach a meadow with a waterfall view on the right corner of the cliff; that place is known as Ripuk. Next, we see a wider view of snowy peaks, including Pyramid Peak, Peak 4, Peak 6, Chamlang and Peak 5, which are marvellous.

Then we walk again to Tadhosa, where there is a small teashop. From here, we cross a stream that flows from Shiva’s Dhara (Shiva’s waterfall). It is also believed that the water flows from Tibet Plateau. The view of the waterfall is great! We ascend for about 40 minutes and reach Jack Kharka, with a few houses for yak herders. After a short ascent, we cross a stream and climb up again for another 40 minutes following the yak pastureland, and eventually, we reach our camp, Langmale.
Overnight at a tent or guesthouse, inclusive of breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Total 4 – 5 hours walking.

Day 12/13Trek to Makalu Base Camp (4870m) and climb up to 5500m towards Advance Base Camp

We walk just above the Barun river for about 30 minutes, then through the bank of the river. After another hour, we reach Shersong (4630m), a large meadow. The view of the mountains from here is amazing! As we ascend, Mt. Makalu, with a spectacular view, appears in front. As we walk further, the tea houses at Makalu Base camp are seen.

Finally, after a few hundred meters ascending, we cross a wooden bridge over the Barun river and reach the Makalu Base camp. Approximately in 3 hours, we will reach Makalu Base Camp; so afternoon, we will have plenty of time to make a side trip to the open valley or towards the Advance Base Camp.

Please note

We have allocated 2 days for visiting Makalu Base Camp and Advance Base Camp. We can also make a day trip to Makalu Base camp and return to Langmale overnight. However, if one wants to make a side trip around the Makalu Base camp, it is recommended to spend overnight in the Base camp of Makalu.

Day 14 - 18Return to Tumlingtar

Return to Tumlingtar. Overnight at a tent or guesthouse, inclusive of breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Day 19Kathmandu

Flight back from Tumlingtar to Kathmandu. Overnight at the hotel, inclusive of breakfast.

Day 20Departure

After breakfast, transfer to the airport for your onward journey or extend your holiday. ~~End of the trip~~


Makalu Base Camp Trek Map


1 Review
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Wolfgang Hartmann

Group Traveller

5th time in Nepal

Another “Caravan of Dreams” was finished after three weeks in November 2016. Our trip to Makalu Base Camp was my fifth trekking tour with NepalHiking. As always, their arrangement and planning were outstanding. Thank you very much for the excellent organisation of the trek. A special thanks to Surya Magar for his excellent guidance and our 2 strong porters, Bhim and Subarna. Without these guys, the trip wouldn’t have been possible. I am still thinking of the fantastic holiday and will never forget this time. See you again in two years for the Dolpo Valley trek.

9 September 2017
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