How to Combine Treks to Langtang and Gosainkunda
The Langtang region is easily accessible from Kathmandu, and offers an amazing combination of beautiful mountain landscapes and Tamang and Tibetan culture. One great route combines the trek up the Langtang Valley with a trip to the famous pilgrimage site of Gosaikunda Lake. There are teahouses the full length of the trek, offering plenty of options for food and accommodation, and making it possible to do the trek at a variety of different paces.
To get to Langtang and Gosaikunda from Kathmandu, you can hire a jeep or take a public bus to Syabrubesi. The roads are in bad condition, and the drive takes roughly 7-8 hours. Syabrubesi is a small road-side town and has a number of small hotels and shops selling food and clothing, as well as some hot springs.
The trail up to the Langtang Valley starts directly from Syabrubesi. Most trekkers reach a place called Lama Hotel on the first day, which takes a total of about five or six hours. Lama Hotel has about a dozen different teahouses to stay at.
On day two, most trekkers go as far as Langtang Village, though it is also possible for faster trekkers to reach Kyanjin Gomba. Kyanjin Gomba is the final village in the valley, and there are a handful of different trails that offer perfect day trips, if you want to stay at Kyanjin Gomba for a few days. Cherko Ri is a fantastic day trip and offers a 360-degree mountain view from the top. Kyanjin Ri is a slightly shorter trip, and has mesmerizing views of Langtang peak. For those who are tired of hiking uphill, the walk to Langshisa Kharka is a gentle trail going up the valley along the river.
When you’re ready to leave Kyanjin Gomba, you can hike down to Lama Hotel pretty easily in one day. The next day, continue on the trail leading down towards Syabrubesi, but keep your eyes open for a trail splitting up to the left, a little ways below Bamboo village. This trail is well-marked with a sign and map indicating the way to Gosaikunda. From here, you will climb for several kilometers to reach Thulo Syabru. You can stay here for the night, or faster hikers can continue to Chandanbari (also called Singh Gumba). Chandanbari has some nice teahouses as well as a small cheese factory where you can buy yak cheese.
From Chandanbari, you can reach Lauribinaya by mid or late morning. From Lauribinaya, Gosaikunda is about two and a half to three hours up the ridge. There are several teahouses at Gosaikunda, but I highly recommend returning back to stay at Lauribinaya after you visit the lake. You can even drop some of your belongings at Lauribinaya on the way up, and carry just a small bag to visit the lake and return. The sunrise and sunset view from Lauribinaya is fantastic, and you can see a long chain of the Nepal and Tibet Himalaya, stretching from the Langtang to the Annapurna range.
From Lauribinaya, return on the same trail down to Chandanbari, and then take a big trail on the left, leading several hours downhill to Dhunche. There are a few spots with tea houses along the way to rest or get some food. From Dhunche, you can either find a bus back to Kathmandu, or, if you want to extend your trek, you can return to Syabrubesi and do the Tamang Heritage Trail. This is a cultural trek, passing through traditional Tamang villages, but also offering great views of the mountains.