Mt Kailash Trek via Simikot is a popular journey into the heartland of spirituality. The trek also provides an opportunity to enjoy the remote beauty of both the Nepalese and Tibetan landscapes. Mt Kailash Trek via Simikot, an ancient Path of Pilgrims, has always been regarded as a pilgrimage trek.
- In 1993 the governments of Nepal and China allowed the first treks across the border between the two countries. While it had been a route for Nepalese pilgrims for years.
- Since 1993, travelers are able to make tours to Mt. Kailash and Lake Manasarovar through Humla, Nepal’s most remote district in the Northwest of the country. This route is the shortest and most practical for trekkers in terms of elevation and distance.
- The trek takes you through a unique blend of Tibetan Buddhist and Nepali Gurung cultures. The vertiginous Himalayan trails climb up to a dramatic plateau at over 4000m. This trek rewards trekkers with dramatic views and a sense of intimacy with Nepal.
- The people of northern Humla are Bhotias whose roots are in Tibet. The upper Humla Karnali Valley is also populated by Bhotias who trade extensively with Tibet in traditional ways that have totally vanished elsewhere. It is only near Simikot, the district headquarters, that travelers encounter people of other ethnic groups, mostly Thakuris and Chhetris.
- The trek to Mt. Kailash starts from Simikot, situated at an elevation of 2910 meters, and climbs up to Nara La pass before reaching the arid Tibetan Plateau. There is no direct air service from Kathmandu to Simikot. Travelers generally have to fly to Simikot via Nepalgunj, the regional hub of Western Nepal.
- The trek via Simikot reaches to the foot of the mighty Mount Kailash. From Nyalu La Pass, visitors begin the Kailash Kora (Parikrama), a spiritual walk across extraordinary scenery. The walk is a pilgrimage for both Buddhists and Hindus who revere the mountain which was once believed to be the abode of their deities. Mount Kailash is a mysterious mountain for travelers. But for Buddhist, Hindus and Bonpo faithful it is the abode of God Shiva; it is their sacred land.
- Kailash peak and Manasarover Lake are situated at 4500 meters above sea level; it is at the highest elevation on the Tibetan plateau. It is the source of holy rivers of south Asia like Indus, Sutlej, Brahmaputra and Karnali. Despite its barren and dry features the lake and the mountain have the magnetic influence to devotees and visitors alike.
- The king of Holy Mountain, Mt Kailash was also known as Mt Meru, the center world of Buddhism where the founder of Buddhism, Sakyamuni used to perform Buddhist rites or the hall of Lord Shiva in Hinduism. The Mt Kailash peak is the highest snowcapped peak in the grandiose range, the meaning of Mt Kailash is “precious snow mountain or saint in Tibetan”.
- Mt. Kailash is the perfect mountain with awesome beauty, with 4 great faces. It is the spiritual center for four great religions: Tibetan Buddhism, Hinduism, the Jain religion and the pre-Buddhist animistic religion – Bonpo. To Tibetans, it is known as Khang Rimpoche (Precious Jewel of Snow) and they see it as the navel of the world.
- Mansarovar is the larger of the two lakes and considered by Buddhists and Hindus to be more worthy of veneration. Buddhists believe that Queen Maya, the Buddha’s mother, was carried here by the gods and washed prior to given birth to the Buddha.
The trek to Mt Kailash via Simikot leaves the travelers with a lifetime of memories. It will be truly a wondrous trek experience.