Makalu Base Camp Trek

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Makalu Base Camp Trek is situated between the Everest and Kanchenjunga range and a genuinely impressive Himalayan tea house trek, passing the Shipton La to reach the foot of the world's fifth highest mountain in the world (8,481m). It is a less-frequented route due to its relative inaccessibility. The Makalu Base Camp trek is an absolute trek for nature-loving trekkers who wish to experience a diversification of landscapes and cultures, as well as remarkable views of some of the world’s tallest mountains, including Everest. 

Makalu Base Camp Trek Highlights

The base camp of the world’s fifth-highest mountain, Makalu (8,421m)

Beautiful views of rhododendron forests, granite cliffs, hanging glaciers, and waterfalls, along with the aspects of the Himalayan landscapes.

Witness the rural life of Nepal’s distinct Rai and Sherpa culture

Spot some of the rarest wildlife in Nepal, including the Red Panda, Snow Leopard, and black bears

Enjoy a full-day exploration at Makalu Base Camp and visit Makalu Barun, National Park

Majestic panoramic views of Everest, Lhotse, and countless other peaks in the area

The trail to the foot of the world’s fifth-highest peak takes us through the pristine wilderness of Makalu Barun National Park recognized for its outstanding natural beauty and the great diversity of flora and fauna. It also has a variety of beautiful scenery with every day bringing a rich selection of scenic rewards as we climb from 700m to over 5,000m. The Makalu Barun National Park is home to 440 species of birds, 3,000 species of flowering plants, and 75 species of mammals including the snow leopard, musk dear, red panda, wild yak, wild boar, and the Himalayan Thar. With the possibility of spotting wildlife at lower altitudes, green pastures, fields, villages, and forests, combined with snow-capped mountains, glaciers, and rocky trails, this is also an ideal photography area.

Trekking is challenging but immensely rewarding. On a single day alone, we will cross four high passes, including the Shipton La (Eric Shipton’s original expedition route) three of which are over 4,000m – a truly stunning trek. And, if we do this trek in the spring when there may be continuous snow, crossing the passes is even more breathtaking. The final approach to Base Camp is undoubtedly one of the best and most scenically spectacular walk-ins anywhere in the world and, when we finally reach Base Camp, Mount Makalu utterly dominates with its majestic, monumental presence. It makes us realize how daunting it would be to climb this 8,416m beast. From a viewpoint above the base camp, we can enjoy an epic panorama of some of the Himalayas’ highest peaks including Everest (8,848.86m), Lhotse (8,516m), Chamlang (7,319m), and Baruntse (7,129m). Makalu trekking trail is full of Buddhists so, we will pass various Manes and Buddhist Prayer flags decorated on the high when we are crossing which gives us a very nice Buddhist vibe.

Gurung, Rai, and Sherpa are the main habitants in this area and the region is surrounded by Hindu and Buddhist cultures. We will get a chance to discover the beautiful villages of Tibetan and Sherpa communities in the tranquil Himalayas. Interaction with local people on the trail will give us some wisdom about their culture, lifestyle, and tradition. People here are engaged in agriculture for livelihood. The people are friendly which makes our journey more lively and homely.  Early in this trek, there is a temple called Manakamana which thousands of pilgrims come to visit every year.

Alike many mountain regions in Nepal, the most preferred time to visit Makalu Base Camp is during the main trekking seasons of April-May or October-November. Throughout the winter (December to March) and the monsoon (June to mid-October), the Arun Nadi and Barun Nadi valley systems pass wet weather towards Mt Makalu, dumping large amounts of snow on both the Khongma Danda and Shipton’s Pass (aka Tutu La), closing them.

The Makalu Barun National Park and Base Camp might be less visited than its next-door neighbor, the Everest Base Camp, but it offers extraordinary vistas and rich wilderness experiences that we will cherish forever.

Makalu Base Camp Trek Itinerary

Day-1 Arrival in Kathmandu

Day-2 Kathmandu Sight-seeing and Trek Preparation

Day-3 Flight to Tumlingtar and drive to Num

Day-4 Trek to Seduwa

Day-5 Trek to Tashi Gaun

Day-6 Trek to Kauma

Day-7 Trek to Mumbak

Day-8 Trek to Nhe Kharka

Day-9 Trek to Sherson

Day-10 Trek to Makalu Base Camp

Day-11 Explore Makalu Base Camp

Day-12 Trek to Nhe Kharka

Day-13 Trek to Mumbak

Day-14 Trek to Kauma

Day-15 Trek to Tashi Gaun

Day-16 Trek to Pakuwa

Day-17 Trek to Bumling

Day-18 Trek to Tumlingtar

Day-19 Flight to Kathmandu

Day-20 Final Departure

Makalu Base Camp Trek Route

The adventure begins in Num village guiding you along the path, to the Arun River and onwards, to Seduwa passing through valleys and cultivated fields. Next you'll venture towards Tashi Gaun, a village that provides a peek into the way of living. Moving onward you will trek through rhododendron and oak forests to Kauma crossing challenging passes like Shipton La and Keke La for breathtaking views of the Himalayas.

Continuing through wilderness towards Mumbak and Nhe Kharka along the Barun River each step unveils a variety of plants and animals. The peaks of Sherson rise dramatically as you get closer. The highlight of the journey is arriving at Makalu Base Camp, which is 4,870 meters above sea level and offers views of Mount Makalu, the highest peak in the world.

After exploring and acclimating for a day at base camp, you start your return journey by walking the same routes you took earlier. Explore Nhe Kharka, Mumbak, and Kauma as you descend and take in views of the surrounding area. After the trek, take a flight from Tumlingtar to Kathmandu for some well-earned rest and time to reflect on your incredible journey.

Makalu Base Camp Trek Distance

The Makalu Base Camp trek spans a distance of, around 150 kilometers encompassing the return journey. It typically requires from 15 to 24 days to complete the trail depending on your specific schedule.

Views from The Makalu Base Camp

From a vantage point overlooking the base camp of Makalu hikers are treated to a panoramic vista of some of the worlds tallest peaks, such, as Mt. Everest (8,848.86m) Chamlang (7,319m) Lhotse (8,516m) Baruntse (7,129m) and many other majestic mountains. The breathtaking sight of the Himalayas coupled with the glacier lakes and picturesque Hinku Valley is truly mesmerizing.

Traveling through the Makalu Barun National Park, known for its range of plant and animal life adventurers might come across elusive wildlife species, like the Snow leopard (Heung Chituwa) Clouded Leopard Himalayan Black Bear and Red Panda.


Flying to Kathmandu is in itself an exciting and beautiful experience. On a clear day, you will get panoramic views of the snow-capped mountains. Upon your arrival in Nepal, the land of the Himalayas, you will be greeted by a representative from Bold Himalaya who will pick you up from the Tribhuwan International Airport. Then, our member will accompany you and escort you to your hotel. Then, you can either take a rest or explore the busy Kathmandu. For the day, you can roam around beautiful Thamel and find yourself some typical local products to shop and get a close look at the bustling urban life.  You can also visit a variety of restaurants and café offering both Western and Nepali cuisine. Overnight in Kathmandu.

Today, we will explore the city as well as prepare for our adventurous trek. We will visit the most historical and spiritual attractions in Kathmandu. They are considered World Heritage Sites including the historic Kathmandu Durbar Square, the sacred Hindu temple of Pashupatinath, the famous ‘Monkey Temple’ (Swyambhunath), and the Buddhist Stupa (Bouddhanath) which is one of the largest stupas in the world. City life is vibrant as the culture and heritage reflect their ethnic identity. Later, there will be a pre-trip discussion where we can meet our trek leader, guide, and other team members. Bold Himalaya will give us brief detail regarding our trek as well as provides us with an opportunity to ask any questions we may have regarding our upcoming adventure. We will prepare the permit on this day as well as make all the preparation necessary for this trip. You can also go for last-minute shopping for your trek. You will find every branded trekking gear at Thamel. Overnight in Kathmandu.

With thrills and adventures in our minds, we will drive to Kathmandu airport for our domestic flight to Tumlingtar. The flight usually takes around 35 to 40 minutes and the views of Mt. Everest, Lhotse, and Makalu along with hills and rivers are magnificent. Then after take-off, a four-hour drive through the beautiful Arun Valley leads to the trek’s starting point at the village of Num. We will drive for about half an hour on a spiralling road uphill to Kandbari, a main town in the district. We will witness a beautiful rural life as we head upwards along with fields of corn, bamboo, and sal trees. We will continue on a winding, dirt road to the highest point at 1,960m before descending to Chichira at 1,900m, a small town with a police checkpoint where we have to present our trekking permit. There are pleasant views of the surrounding, forested hillsides. The road deteriorates a bit from Chichira so it’s a bumpy ride from here to Num. We can get a slight glimpse of the Himalayas from Num.

Today, on our first day of trekking, we will have a big, steep descent to the Arun River, which takes around 2 hours, and a big climb to Seduwa, losing and regaining the height in one day. The walk down to the river is through cardamom crops (the largest cash crop in the area), and the trail is on big stone steps all the way to the river at 770m. It's very hot, but the scenery is at its best. We will cross the suspension bridge over the Arun River and begin the long, winding climb to Seduwa, passing groves of giant bamboo, and bustling village life. Our guide will need to visit the Makalu-Baron National Park checkpoint to deal with all kinds of legal permits for the trek. We will trek through dense forests of juniper and rhododendron passing few villages to finally reach Seduwa. There is a school in Seduwa, as well as many houses, small shops, and a few tea houses dispersed across the hillside.

It's a lovely day without any ascents and descents like yesterday. We will begin to climb on a path with many stone steps and pass several Mani walls as we head into the Sherpa country. We will walk through many small farms dotted across the hillside, cardamom plantations and bamboo, and rhododendron forests. It's certainly a varied, undulating walk today. After approximately two hours we will reach the small settlement of Chyaksa Danda at 1,900m. There's a school, a tea shop, and several houses. We may hear barbets, cuckoos, drongos, and laughing thrushes calling through the trees. In some places, we will be walking through dense forest and have to cross a few streams on good log bridges. We can see our destination, Tashigaon, on the hillside ahead, although it takes longer than we think to arrive, as we contour on an undulating path. Eventually, we will descend to a log bridge just before our final push on stone steps to reach Tashigaon. The lodges are all perched on the top so we have a bit of climbing through the village to earn our delicious Dal Bhat. The glimpse of the Himalayas is magnificent from Tashigaon.

Be prepared for a lot of ascents today. We will begin by ascending out of Tashigaon and head up on stone steps. After a while, we will cross a log bridge and continue ascending through a stunning rhododendron forest. It's a hilly ascent but a lovely walk with birds like verditer fly-catchers, treepies, and warblers tweeting through the trees, and sparrowhawks. In April, the rhododendrons and magnolia trees provide a colorful foreground with snow-capped peaks to the east. As we look back we'll see Tashigaon way beneath us.

After almost three hours, we will reach Dhara at 2,867m which has a tea shop, and we are likely to have our lunch here as it's our last opportunity to have a refreshment stop until we reach Kauma. Leaving Dhara, it's a stiff climb of around one hour to Unshisa at 3,200m, where we will pass a giant rock. There's a tea hut (closed in April 2019) and prayer flags marking this pass. From Unshisa, it's fiercer climbing on stone steps through a rhododendron forest. Finally, after a couple of hours striving upwards from Unshisha, we will reach a stone rest stop with prayer flags, and after another 15 minutes to a half-hour, we will reach Kauma at 3,470m. There are three lodges at Kauma, and there may be quite a bit of snow here as well.

 We will begin the day with outstanding views of snowy peaks and surrounding landscapes. After leaving Kauma, we will climb on steep switchbacks for a while. We will then ascend less steeply through rhododendron forests to the top of the range, with a large Mani wall decorated with prayer flags. From here, we will get superb views of Chamlang (7,319m), Mt. Baruntse (7,162m), and Mera Peak (6,476m). Following the ridge for a while, we will ascend a stone staircase with a few up and down that passes through the Thulo Pokhari (big pond) and Sano Pokhari (small pond). We will then climb gently up a shallow rocky gully to the Kike La (4,127 m). From the pass, we will go down to another lake, then climb steeply through large boulders to the Tutu La. We will continue descending about 150 meters into sparse rhododendron forests to a level area. The ultimate descent is through a forest of firs and rhododendrons to Mumbuk (3,570 m). Mumbuk is a forest camp, on a lush slope about 100 meters above a small stream, with sights of snow peaks through the trees.

The day begins with a sharp descent into a narrow valley, and then we will cross the Barun Khola just beyond Tamatan Kharka. We will then move left through fir forests, along the flank of the Barun Valley. Moving along the ill-defined trail, we will cross a 200-meter-long slide area, and then follow the river to a Kharka. Moving through forests of birch and scrub rhododendron, we will reach Yangle Kharka. It’s a wild, remote, and windy spot. There is a monastery, which is closed, just down from the lodge, providing glamorous limelight for photos with the snowy mountains behind. Then, we will climb from Yangle Kharka, finally crossing to the north side of the Barun Khola to reach Nhe Kharka. There is a small Gompa at the south side of the valley that present marvelous mountain views.

Beyond the Nhe Kharka, we will chase the north bank of the Barun Khola for a while. We will then cross a small wooden bridge before the river turns northward. The Barun Valley makes a giant S-shaped curve and the walls rise almost vertically 1500 to 2000 meters above the river, but the trail ascends smoothly as we access Ripok Kharka. Still, on the north side of the Barun, the trail turns westward and leaves the rhododendron forests for alpine tundra. Above Ripok Kharka, the trail crosses a rocky ridge with a few goths and then climbs alongside a hill assembled by the Barun Glacier. There are excellent views of Pyramid Peak (7,168m), Peak 4 (6,720m), Chamlang (7,290m), Peak 3 and Peak 5, but Makalu is not visible yet. As we cross a ridge, the glacier spins lightly north. We will then enter an alluvial valley and Makalu pops into view just before Sherson (4615m). Sherson is partially sheltered but still is a very cold place. This is the lower base camp of Mt. Makalu, providing outstanding views of the surrounding peaks and ranges.

From Sherson, we stay to the right in a trench on the east side of the valley. It is continuous descent to a trivial pass about 100 meters above Makalu Base Camp. We will then descend to a stream, cross on boulders to the base camp on the west bank of the river. From here, we will get outstanding views of the south face of Makalu. The giant column of the south face rises across from base camp. An ascent of this column returns the views of Peak 6, 7 and Baruntse (7220 m), Everest and Lhotse complete the panorama. As we would expect, the world's fifth highest mountain, Makalu (8,481m), completely dominates the view. Many Tibetan snowcocks, black redstarts, hill pigeons, and mountain finches may be seen around the base camp. 

Today, we explore the Makalu Base Camp relishing the beauty of the surrounding glaciers and glacial lakes. We can also walk a little up to Barun Glacier and make a side trip to the calm Barun Pokhari. One option for today which assures the most brilliant panoramic views is to climb to the hill around 5,300m above the base camp. We will cross the river on the Log Bridge and climb on an unclear, slightly indefinite path for around 3 hours. From this viewpoint, we can see Mt. Everest, Lhotse and Nuptse as well as close-up, breathtaking views of Makalu, Peak 7, Peak 6 and Peak 4. We will retrace our steps to the base camp when we've had our full of mountain drama. The round trip should take around 4-5 hours. It's a strenuous undertaking as it's steep and the altitude will surely rise above 5,000m.

There are other few options, which include succeeding a path to view the lakes beyond base camp. There is a shorter hill climb just above base camp, and also a small hill at the head of base camp marked with prayer flags which are around an hour's walkout and back. Our guide may also have other suggestions.

Makalu Base Camp is our the eventual destination for this trek so, we will be following a return trip from this day. We will leave Makalu Base Camp early in the morning retracing our step down the Barun Valley towards Nhe kharka. We will pass through beautiful landscapes, rhododendron forests, rivers, glaciers along with the magnificent views of Peak 6, 7, Baruntse (7220 m), Everest, Lhotse, Pyramid Peak (7,168m), Peak 4 (6,720m), Chamlang (7,290m), Peak 3 and Peak 5. We will pass via Sherson.

From Nhe Kharka, we will continue descending through the forests to Mumbuk. From here we will observe beautiful sunset views of Makalu and Chamlang. We will pass through beautiful rhododendron forests, also we can see a large Mani wall adorned with prayer flags. We will witness superb views of Chamlang (7,290m), Peak 6 (6,739m), and Peak 7 (6,105m). Overnight at Mumbuk.

Leaving Mumbuk, we will trek across the Shipton La and go down to Kauma. We will witness beautiful forests and magnificent mountain views on our way back to Kauma.

Today, we will make a long steep descent back to Tashi Gaon. At Tashi Gaon, we will spend the rest of the day relaxing in order to recover from the high altitude. We will pass through many small farms dotted across the hillside, cardamom plantations, and bamboo, and rhododendron forests. Overnight at Tashi Gaon.

 We will walk through farming settlements to the spread-out Rai village. The trail descends to the Apsawa Khola and crossing it on a suspension bridge we will climb steeply to Chhayang, a pleasant Rai village with an extensive bamboo-pipe water supply at 800 m. The trail then crosses a stream at 590m and makes some ups and downs to reach Parangbu, a delightful camping spot among rice fields on the banks of the Arun River. We will continue through forests and pass several streams to reach Pukuwa.

 The route now follows a trail through forests and some amazing high and disclosed narrow tracks as it climbs over rocky ridges. The route finally enters a region of extreme valley bottom cultivation, and crosses a large landslide and some more jungle before descending to Tome (520 m). Below Tome, the Arun Valley becomes broader and more U shaped. Then, the path ascends over another hill on a steep, narrow stairway of rock steps. From the top of the hill at 530m, the path descends to an enchanting camp on the banks of the Sankhuwa Khola (370m), across from the Chhetri village of Bumling.

The route pass over the fields of lower Bumling then ascends over a hill and goes down to the Inkhuwa Khola, crossing it on a shaky wooden plank bridge. The trail chases the river downstream to its union with the Arun. It then follows the Arun downstream, crossing a large suspension bridge. Then, succeeding the east bank of the Arun, the trail passes through Chyawabesi before making a short climb back to the Tumlingtar plateau. It is a few km of completely calm walking to the field.

30-minute amazing scenic flight back to Kathmandu. On arrival at Kathmandu, you will be transferred to the hotel and you can take a good rest. Also, you can feel free to explore and enjoy. We will celebrate the successful completion of our trekking with a pleasant farewell dinner.

It’s time to say farewell to Nepal. After wishing you goodbye, our representative from Bold Himalaya will assist you to Tribhuwan International Airport for your next destination. If you have any intention of extending your stay in Nepal for an adventurous experience like Safari, Rafting, Biking Tours, Peak climbing, and trekking in other regions, then we would be more than happy to be of help. Thank you for choosing Upper Mustang Trekking in Nepal with Bold Himalaya. Take care and goodbye from Bold Himalaya.

Included & Excluded Items in the Trip Package


  • Airport pick up and drop off service provided.

  • Enjoy 3 nights of accommodation, in Kathmandu.

  • Assistance with permits processing and associated fees.

  • Included staff insurance

  • Flight from Kathmandu to Tumlingtar and back following the itinerary.

  • All necessary ground transportation arranged for you.

  • Accompanied by a guide proficient in English for the trek and sightseeing, around Kathmandu valley.

  • Kathmandu valley sightseeing after arrival 


  • Indulge in three meals breakfast, lunch, dinner) with tea and coffee staying in shared twin accommodations at lodges, campsites or tea houses during the trek.

  • International airfare

  • Fees, for obtaining a visa for Nepal

  • Any nights spent in Kathmandu that are not included in the itinerary

  • Personal insurance coverage

  • Cost of rescue evacuation if needed

  •  expenses like phone calls, internet usage, toiletries, battery charging, hot showers, laundry services, soft drinks, beer and other alcoholic beverages

  • Personal equipment such, as clothing, packing items or bags personal medical kit, trekking gear, etc.

  • Expenses related to hiring a porter

  • Tips for the guide porters and support staff

  • Any other services or activities that are not specified in the itinerary.

Tumlingtar to Makalu Base Camp

Beginning the trek from Tumlingtar is the most popular trekking route to reach Makalu Base Camp. Tumlingtar is an entry point to Makalu Base Camp, after taking a scenic flight from Kathmandu and relishing a breathtaking view of the mountains, hills, and rivers that make up the Nepalese landscape until you arrive at Tumlingtar.

From Tumlingtar, We drive to the village of Num with greenery filling up our landscape getting a glimpse of the Himalayas. The trek then starts from Num village crossing a wooden bridge over the Barun river to enter Makalu Barun Conservation Area. The trek passes through dense forests of juniper and rhododendron forests, lakes, fields filled with yaks, blue sheep, and other Himalayan cattle grazing in the field. Crossing different villages, climbing over various passes such as Kauma La Pass (3,603m), Keke La Pass (4,127m), Shipton La (4,170m), and Tutu La Pass (4,080m), you’ll reach Makalu Base Camp (4,870m/15,997ft). The journey offers breathtaking views of Mt. Makalu (8,481m/27,825), Mt. Everest (8,848.86m/29,031ft), Mt. Lhotse (8,516m/27,939ft), Mt. Baruntse (7,162m/23,497ft), Mt. Chamlang(7,319m/24,012ft), and Mera Peak (6,476m/21,246ft).

Makalu Base Camp Altitude

Manaslu Base Camp is situated at an altitude of 4870 meters from sea level. To reach this destination you will have to climb through various places.  Beginning the journey from Tumlingtar (410m) and drive to Num (1,560m) – the beginning point of the trek. Trekkers gradually ascend through quaint villages like Seduwa (1,500m), Tashi Gaun (2,100m), Kauma (3,470m), and Mumbak (3,570m) after ascending steeply through rhododendron forests, mani walls decorated with prayer flags observing the superb views of Chamlang Peak, Mera Peak, and Mt. Baruntse.

The trail continues to higher elevations reaching Nhe Kharka (3,000m) and Sherson (4,615m) – the last village before Makalu Base Camp. Climbing through a steep trail alongside the Barun River, trekkers walk through icy glaciers and ridges to reach Makalu Base Camp (4,870m). From Makalu Base Camp, the superb panorama of Mt. Makalu from the south, Mt. Everest (8,848.86m), Lhotse (8,516m), and other Himalayas in eastern Nepal can be viewed. Trekkers adore the beauty of the surrounding glaciers and glacial lakes. The gradual ascent and proper acclimatization ensure a safer and more enjoyable trekking experience, allowing adventures to forge unforgettable memories amidst the splendor of the Himalayas.

Weather Difficulty

The weather in the Himalayas can be unpredictable and harsh, especially at higher altitudes. Strong winds, low temperatures, and snowfall can make trekking more difficult increasing the risk of frostbite and avalanches.

The weather is troublesome mainly when trekking during the winter and monsoon seasons. The temperatures are cold and the trails are wet, muddy, and slippery during these times due to snow and rainfall. The beauty of nature gets hidden behind the dark clouds and the roads get blocked due to heavy snowfall. There are also the chances of flight cancellations and delays due to fog and rain showers.

Best time for Makalu Base Camp Trek

The Makalu Base Camp trek is most popular between Spring (March to May) and Autumn (September to November) being the optimum seasons. The weather during these seasons is consistent, and the temperature is pleasant so that the trekkers can fully appreciate each wonderful journey aspect. It is possible to undertake this trek in Summer Season (June to August) and Winter (December to February) but the heavy rainfall and snowfall make the route challenging.

Spring Season

Spring Season is one of the finest seasons for trekking at a higher altitude. The weather is favorable, the temperature is pleasant, and the sky is usually clear during this season. The alpine forest is a rainbow of blooms with rhododendron and magnolia flower. This season also offers a vast selection of exotic flora and fauna so you can encounter beautiful plants and animals during the trekking.

During this season, Trekkers experience the finest views of the mountains and landscapes when the weather is clear. The daytime temperature ranges from 5 to 15 degrees Celsius and the nighttime temperature ranges from 0 to 7 degrees Celsius. The magnificent peaks dotted with tiny hamlets, glaciers, and villages can be seen with your eyes so spring is one of the most admired seasons to explore beautiful Makalu Base Camp.

Autumn Seasons

Autumn is another ideal season for Makalu Base Camp trekking. The weather during this season falls typically with clear skies and the temperature is comfortable, making the time perfect for trekking. Apart from having gorgeous skies which offer crystal clear views and memorable trips, the autumn season is the time of year when there are many religious events. The greatest festival of Nepal, Dashain, and Tihar falls under this season so trekkers will experience customs, and distinct culture prevailing the trek memorable.

During this season, the mountain views are at their finest which will give a thrilling and magnificent experience to the trekkers. The daytime temperature ranges from 6 degree Celsius to 17 degrees Celsius and the nighttime temperature ranges from -4 to 1 degree Celsius. Experiencing the festivals and cultural insights, with clear skies and favorable weather, trekking to Makalu Base Camp is an unforgettable lifetime experience. Makalu Base Camp Trek

Makalu Base Camp Trek Difficulty

Trekking to Makalu Base Camp is known for its nature in terms of difficulty. Its considered one of the treks, in the Himalayas due to trails and rough terrain. Trekkers typically walk for around 6 hours daily so being in shape is crucial.

To minimize altitude related risks its recommended not to gain than 500 meters in elevation per day a guideline our Makalu base camp trek itinerary follows. Other challenges include weather, altitude sickness concerns and the remote location of the base camp.

Located at an altitude of 5000 meters trekkers must acclimatize properly to the elevation. Individuals, with a history of altitude sickness should exercise caution. Consult with a professional before starting the trek.

With proper support anyone can successfully hike to Makalu Base Camp. Our team of trek leaders, guides and porters is here to assist you in completing your journey, to Makalu Base Camp 

Makalu Base Camp Trek Preparation

To ensure a rewarding and pleasant Makalu Base Camp Trek experience adequate preparation is essential. Here are key factors to keep in mind while getting ready, for the journey;

Training Required

Going on the 20 day expedition, to the Makalu Base Camp Trek demands a level of fitness. Each day you'll be trekking for 5 6 hours so its crucial to boost your stamina. To prepare we suggest engaging in cardio exercises like running, jogging, swimming using a treadmill and working out on a machine.

To improve your endurance, for trekking consider incorporating strength endurance exercises and hiking related activities like trail running, stair climbing or short hikes into your routine. Allocate time daily for about a month, to your trek to prepare yourself for the adventure.

Mental preparation

Heading towards the Makalu Base Camp can pose hurdles. Preparedness, for the treks requirements and embracing it with a sense of adventure are key.

Makalu Base Camp Trek Insurance: 

It's crucial to have travel insurance when embarking on the Makalu base camp trek as the region is quite remote and not frequented by trekking paths in the Himalayas. The area is secluded, lacks facilities. In case of an emergency or an injury that cannot be adequately treated with first aid air evacuation is necessary. Hence, it is basic to have emergency evacuation facilities together with your travel insurance. Cancellations of trips due to normal fiascos, political turmoil, or individual crises ought to be secured by the protections. Making beyond any doubt the approach complies with the journey criteria requires carefully going over the subtle elements.

Makalu Base Camp Trek Permits

Trekkers must purchase two types of permits if they are interested in embarking on the trek to Makalu Base Camp. The permits are Makalu Rural Municipality Permit which costs USD 25 and Makalu-Barun Conservation Area Permit which costs USD 30.

Note: Our licensed guide will arrange the trek permits but please provide the essential documents required for permits.

Documents required for Permits

The documents required to get a permit for the Tsum Valley trek are mentioned below:

1 passport-size photo (for MCAP permit) 

One scanned photograph (to be uploaded for Tsum Valley RAP's online form) 

Photocopy of your passport (with at least six months validity) 

Travel Insurance

Nepal tourist visa Makalu Base Camp

Makalu Base Camp Trek Guide

Solo trekking is not permitted for foreign trekkers. Bold Himalaya provides highly experienced and licensed trekking guides who prioritize the safety and well-being of all trekkers. 

Guides are there to provide you will enormously support, and guidance, and make sure you have delightful meals and comfortable accommodation facilities. They keep you safe and have the best possible experience during your trek by showing you famous places and making you fascinated with the tales of local lore and experience wild adventures. 

For having a comfortable journey with less constraint, hiring a porter is crucial as they carry your luggage and equipment assuring you have an unburdened journey. The maximum weight limit for porters is 20 kg.

Altitude Sickness and its Prevention

Altitude sickness is a condition where your body cannot adapt to the changing altitudes. The chances of altitude sickness come into existence after reaching an elevation higher than 3,000 meters. Gaining an altitude with a constant pace and taking a break after every 1,000 meters of trekking helps decrease the chances of altitude sickness. Symptoms like headache, nausea, dizziness, vomiting, or insomnia can be seen if one suffers from altitude sickness.

To mitigate the risks of altitude sickness follow the below mentioned measures;

 Stay well hydrated along the trek.

 Monitor your itinerary for acclimatization periods.

 Avoid alcohol consumption.

 Listen to your bodys cues. Maintain a pace.

 Carry a pulse oximeter to monitor blood oxygen levels.

 Opt for climbing during the day and sleeping at elevations at night.

 Remember to pack medication, for headaches and body pains.

Facilities Available

Drinking Water

Drinking water is the most essential factor in keeping yourself hydrated during the trek so trekkers are required to drink at least 3 to 4 liters of water per day. Safe drinking water like bottled water, mineral water, and boiled water are available at teahouses or lodges but come with some additional charges.

Drinking water is available at various water sources from ponds, springs, and water taps however it is recommended to use a water purifier. It is advised to carry 3 or 4 water bottles for refilling purposes. 


Electricity, along the trekking trail, is available at teahouses even in higher altitudes. Charging the electronics at teahouses comes with small fees so it is recommended for trekkers to carry power banks or portable chargers.

Mobile Networking and Internet

While at lower altitudes, good access to mobile networking and the internet is available but the access is limited with higher altitudes. Teahouses offer internal facilities through WiFi routers but getting internet access requires some fees. You can also use the Nepali sim like Ntc and Ncell to utilize mobile networks.

ATM and Money Exchange

The facilities for ATMs and money exchange along the trekking trail are not available. You can withdraw enough money and exchange it with Nepali rupees while in Kathmandu. Make sure to carry enough Nepali currency for your Makalu Base Camp trek.

Packing List


Scarf, sunhat or warm hat, sunglasses, scarf, bandana, woolen shirt, waterproof jacket, long sleeve shirt, half sleeve shirt, fleece jacket, hoodie, thick sweater, tracksuit, trousers, waterproof pants, thermal bottoms, hiking or trekking trousers, woolen gloves, woolen socks, and trekking or hiking boots. 


Toothbrush, toothpaste, shampoo, comb, and toilet paper


Trekking poles, duffel bags, and sleeping bags

First Aid and Medicines

Antibiotics or painkillers, bandages, water bottles, and backpacks

Miscellaneous items

Contact lenses or power glasses, water bottles, power banks or universal adapters, cameras, and binoculars

Nepal Visa Information

If you are planning to trek in Nepal, you will require a tourist visa to enter Nepal. You can apply for a visa to Nepal from the embassy of Nepal in your country or you can get an arrival visa on your arrival at Tribhuvan International Airport. You must enter within six months from the visa-issued date. Your total stay will be counted from the day you enter Nepal. 

You will have to fill the visa application form and submit it to the immigration officer with visa fees. 

Foreigners except for citizens of India or China, compulsorily require a visa to enter Nepal, and it is charged around US$ 40 as visa application fees for 30 days for a tourist visa. 

Makalu Base Camp Trek Cost

For the Makalu Base Camp Trek participants can expect to pay around falano per person for the entire experience.


Responsible Tourism

Our experienced field staff or team strongly believes that we have a responsibility to act in favor of the local culture and environment. We heartily request all our guests to respect the local people, culture, traditions, and beliefs, be responsible, and express the positive influence of tourism in Nepal to local people and support the well-being of the local community. Let's leave only footsteps behind and capture only good memories from the Makalu Base Camp trek.


The accommodation during your stay at Kathmandu is offered in a 4-star category hotel with all the luxurious facilities. Accommodation during the Makalu Base Camp trekking and safe and hygienic tea houses are arranged. Although the teahouses don't have modern facilities, the room available in the tea houses usually come in double occupancy including beds, blankets, mattresses, pillows, and attached bathrooms. Attached bathrooms might not be available everywhere, but you will get a luxury toilet available in the tea houses. Single rooms are available and they will be provided for female solo travelers. These teahouses and lodges provide amenities like showers (available, at an additional cost) electricity (often generated by solar panels) and Wi Fi (though the signal strength can vary). Hikers should expect a basic way of living especially at higher elevations. 

We will make sure and accommodate you to the best tea houses available with great views and scenarios during the trek.

About Meal

While at Kathmandu, hotels offer a variety of delicious meals according to your selections. 

The body requires a tremendous amount of energy to walk uphill and downhill for a long time so food is one of the most essential parts while trekking to Makalu Base Camp. Foods that are rich in proteins, minerals, and carbohydrates are offered in teahouses. Even though the food items are limited, the menu includes:

For Breakfast

Tibetan bread, Corn flakes, Chapati, Oatmeal, French toast with jam, fried rice, pancakes, porridge with milk, fried or boiled eggs, honey, and peanut butter, muesli, vegetable items, and drinking options like hot tea and hot chocolate.

For Lunch Dal, Bhat, Tarkari, Thukpa, Noodles, Spaghetti, Fruits, vegetable items, sherpa stew, chapati, bread, macaroni, momos (dumplings), pizza, burgers, spring rolls, steaks, potato items, rice and curry, and dessert items.

For Dinner Dal, Bhat, Tarkari, Chapati bread, macaroni, Korean Ramen, pizza, burgers, spring rolls, yak steak, rice with curry, momos (dumplings), sandwiches, meats, thukpa, spaghetti, and dessert items like rice pudding or apple pie.

Mt. Makalu lies in the Mahalangur section of the Himalayas, about 19 km southeast of Mt. Everest. It is located in Sankhuwasabha, Nepal's eastern region, entirely within Makalu Barun National Park. 

Solo trekking in Makalu Base Camp is not allowed however you can do the trek alone only by hiring a guide and porter. If you are a beginner, then solo travel is not recommended.

Makalu Base Camp is graded as a moderate to challenging level trek. The level of difficulty mostly depends upon an individual's physical fitness, weather conditions, and trekker's experience. If you are a regular trekker, the route is less demanding and less challenging. 

The highest elevation you will experience during the Makalu Base Camp trek is 5,100 meters/16,732 feet.

Makalu Base Camp is among the solitude routes that take 20 days to complete the entire trek starting from Tumlingtar. Due to remoteness and longer itineraries, and depending upon group sizes, the Makalu Base Camp trek costs around US$ 2,000.

For the Makalu Base Camp trek, you'll walk around 6-7 hours on average per day. 

The Autumn season (September, October, and November) and the spring season (March, April, and May) are considered the best time for Makalu Base Camp trekking when the weather is favorable and the views are crystal clear.

Makalu base camp trek offers you numerous beauties of untouched nature ranging from alpine meadows to lush forests to incredible vistas of the Himalayas. Also, it is home to numerous exotic floras and faunas. All these factors make the Makalu base camp trek one of the most beautiful moments to be cherished for your lifetime.