Sikkim Goecha La Trek
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Sikkim Goecha La Trek

Book NowDuration: 15 Days

Trekking in Kanchenjunga region of Sikkim
This 8-day trek including one rest day, to Goecha La takes you up-close for a spectacular view of the mighty Kanchenjunga amidst a majestic panorama of the other Himalayan peaks.

Once the trek crosses beyond the meadows Dzongri, it is a raw adventure at its best where the visitor is taken into the realm of towering mountain peaks directly above and camp is set amidst the view of high mountain glaciers.

This is undisputedly the most popular trek route in Sikkim. We spend few days in Kalimpong and Gangtok to acclimate and prepare, before this great trek and after completion, we spend two nights in Darjeeling to relax or visit

Detail Itinerary:

Day 1: Arrive – Kalimpong(Approx. 86km/3hrs drive)
Upon arrival at Bagdogra airport or NJP train station or in Siliguri town either with your own arrangements or after one of our trips, you are met by Wind Horse Guide and driven to Kalimpong, once a prominent center for trade with Tibet. Blessed with a year-round temperate climate, it is home of many flower nurseries. This afternoon, visit the ridge tops for spectacular views from Deolo & Rinkingpong (Durpin Dara) hills.  Visit local monasteries (especially Zongdogpaldri Monastery) and stroll around the town. Overnight in hotel Silver Oaks or similar.

Day 2: Kalimpong – Gangtok
After Breakfast at the hotel drive to Gangtok,  the capital of Sikkim (Approx. km/3hrs drive). Enter Sikkim at the base of the foothills in Rangpo, and then gradually climb up to the ridge town of Gangtok.  After finishing your entry formalities at the Rangpo border continue your drive to Gangtok.

Once an independent Himalayan kingdom, Sikkim was annexed by India in 1975, but the town still retains something of its traditional cultural values, giving us a rare opportunity to discover something of the cultural heritage of this lively hilltop town.  In the evening, take a short walking tour through its MG Marg Avenue and browse the colorful Lal Bazaar food/vegetable market.
Overnight in hotel Norkhil or similar.

Day 3:  Around Gangtok
After breakfast visit the Enchey monastery, followed by some view points, from where you may get spectacular views of the city and the snow-capped peaks of Kanchendzonga.  We also visit a flower exposition and walk along the garden/ promenade to view to the Palace and temples used by Chogyals (Kings of Sikkim). Later, you can also stop by at the Cottage Industry, where you can see and buy the traditional handicrafts.  In the afternoon, visit Namgyal Institute of Tibetology, a treasure house of rare Lepcha, Tibetan and Sanskrit manuscripts, numerous priceless statues and thangkas. On a hillock nearby, you can also visit Dodrul Chorten monastery. The rest of the afternoon is free or take a guided stroll or walk in the MG Marg Avenue and to visit the colorful Lal Bazaar Market.
Overnight in hotel Norkhil.

Day 4: Gangtok – Yuksam (138Km/ 5-6hrs drive. Altitude 1760m)
After breakfast start for drive west through ever changing vegetation, through foothills, along river valleys to Yuksam. En-route visitng Rumtek monastery and we will also stop to visit as many places as possible, as our road passes through Singtam,  Ravangla and Tashiding to Yuksom. Upon arrival check into the hotel. Yoksum is important in Sikkimese history as the place where the first Chogyal (king) of Sikkim was crowned in 1642. At Yoksum, we’ll rendezvous with our trekking staff, including the Sherpas, porters, and cook staff. Yaks/Pony will be used on the trek to carry some of the gear. While here, we will also try to visit attractions around Yuksom or visit on return after the trek.
We can also visit the coronation site of the first King of Sikkim (about a twenty minute walk)
Overnight in Yuksam Residency or similar.

Day 5: Yuksom - Bakhim (6+ hrs trek 12km. Altitude 2750m)
After breakfast at the hotel, we start our trek in Sikkim’s pristine wilderness. We begin gently uphill, following the Rathang river gorge, through dense, rich untouched forest with ferns and many different varieties of orchid and brightly coloured birds. After an hour or so you cross the Paha Khola suspension bridge, (5,685ft/1,733m) and into rhododendron country.

Passing by sweet smelling viburnum, you cross the Prek Chu River before ascending steeply for two or three hours to arrive at the lodge at Bakhim.  We will either stay in the Tourist lodge, or sleep in our tents. This lodge is often occupied by Himalayan Mountaineering Institute students on climbing courses.

Day 6: Bakhim - Dzongri  (5 – 6 hrs 10km 4030m)
Today is another challenging day of the trek as we gain altitude and the climbs are steep. After breakfast, we begin a moderate climb up to the picturesque village of Tsokha, a resettlement camp for Tibetan refugees and the last village encountered on the trek. This where we get our first close up view of Mount Pandim. . A fairly steep climb above Tshoka takes you into beautiful rhododendron forests and along a well-defined, uphill path to Phedung (about 2-3 hours from Tshoka) - a good lunch spot. We continue our uphill journey for about 2 hrs through mixed temperate forest to trekker’s lodge at Dzongri.  A brief climb beyond brings you to a meadow where we can pitch camp in a site with views  of Koktang 6,147m/20,167ft, Ratong, Kabru 7,338m/24,075ft, Kangchenjunga 8,586m/28,169ft, Simvo 6,815m/22,359ft and Pandim 6,691m/21,952ft.

Day 7: In Dzongri (Excursions or rest)
If the weather looks good for viewing this morning, we’ll rise at dawn and hike up to a high overlook to watch the sun rise over Kanchenjunga and the Onglathang Valley. After breakfast we will take a day hike to Gingay Dara with its panoramic views of the Ratong Valley and Ratong Glacier as well as the snowy peaks of Koktang, Kabru ,Frey and mountains to the south of the Kanchenjunga. We will also be able to see in the distance the H.M.I. Base Camp, the area designated for high altitude mountain training for students undergoing basic and advanced courses with the Himalayan Mountaineering Institute. The hike to Gingay Dara is moderate, about four hour’s roundtrip.
While you can rest if you wish, one should do a short acclimatization walk around the local area to help prepare you for the next few days.

Day 8:  Dzongri - Thangshing (6km - 4hr trek. 3930m)
Ascend gradually over open hillside for a mile or so to a low ridge (4,115m/13,500ft). From here, beside some chortens on the skyline there are fabulous views of Kangchenjunga and Pandim. Then descend, steeply on a good path through rhododendron forest to Prek Chu River (a 3 hour trek and at 3,749m/12,300ft). You cross the river and ascend gradually for 1½ hrs through pine forest to reach a grassy campsite, beneath the shapely unclimbed peak of Pandim.  There is a trekker hut here, which may be available for cooking or even sleeping. Camp overnight in Thangshing.

Day 9: Thangsing - Lamune (near Samiti Lake) (3km – 2-3hrs 4298m)
Today we begin our approach toward our last camp at Lamuney. Today’s walk is a short (2½ hours) gradual uphill hike through the Onglathang valley past yak herders and grazing yaks. After lunch at camp, you’ll have the afternoon to do some optional day hikes to either Samiti Lake (14,100'/4,298m) Samiti Lake is beautiful, holy and emerald green nestling behind brightly coloured, wind-torn prayer flags. Alternatively you can hike to the base of Mount Tinchin Khang’s glacier (15,500'). Overnight in Camp.

Day 10: Lamuney - Goecha La – Thangsing
An early start for the hike up to the Goecha La (4,984m/16,350ft) and back. The walk takes about six hours roundtrip and it is challenging and strenuous, depending on the weather; the terrain is also more challenging than the previous days on trek. (Those who do not wish to go to Goecha La can stay at the lunch site and relax, or walk to the viewing point, which is less then two-hour hike. The viewpoint provides great views of Kanchenjunga and the surrounding peaks.  Those who are up for it, are strongly encouraged to undertake the hike up to the Goecha La, it’s the finest possible view of the Kanchenjunga massif.  Returning down the valley, there will be a welcome meal and a short rest before setting off to walk gently downhill for 1½ to 2 hours, to reach Thangsing. Total about 7-8 hrs walk. Overnight camping.

Day 11: Thangsing - Tshoka
It’s worth getting up early to make the short hike to the ridge behind camp. From here there are fantastic views of Kangchenjunga and one can look back up to the Goecha La. Leaving Thangsing, you take a different route back, avoiding the long climb to the Dzongri Plateau. Descending to the Prek Chu River, you contour round through jungle with, inevitably, some ups as well as downs, to emerge at Phedang again. From there it is a steep walk down to Tsoka. This, of course, saves a day on the return march, but does involve quite a long day (7-8hrs trek). Camp overnight.

Day 12: Tshoka – Yuksam (15km/5hrs 1760m)
An easy day of hiking takes us back to Yoksum. This afternoon is free to explore the town of Yoksum. Because this is the last night with the trekking staff, we’ll enjoy a farewell dinner and be entertained with a fun-filled cultural evening of traditional singing and dancing. Overnight in hotel Yuksam Residency/Similar

Day 13: Yuksom – Darjeeling (120km /4-5hrs)
After breakfast begin long, but varied and interesting drive through the foothills, along river valleys and passing tea and cardamom plantations to Darjeeling. Check-into your hotel. In the evening, after high tea, you will be taken on a short walk to browse through its bazaar, rubbing shoulders with locals and visitors that throng Chowrasta mall/ promenade in the evening. Overnight in hotel Mayfair Hill Resort or similar.

Day 14:  Darjeeling Tour
At leisure you can spend your day by taking rest at the hotel or exploring the local market at Darjeeling by your own or you can go with the below mention program :
This morning, we will walk to visit the Himalayan Institute of Mountaineering and Zoology (which has had some remarkable success at breeding snow leopard, Tibetan wolf and red panda), the Mountaineering Institute, with its Everest Museum and the Tibetan Refugee centre, where Tibetan craftwork is on sale. We will also view the lush setting of the Happy Valley Tea Estate, probably the finest in the area. The afternoon is for a ride on ‘toy train’ till Ghoom and along the way back, stop in the monasteries. Overnight in Mayfair Hill resort or similar.

Day 15: Departure
Departure transfer Siliguri/ NJP Station or Bagdogra airport. Approximately 3hrs drive.