10 reasons why you need to hire a local guide for Kanchenjunga trek - Himalayan Glacier
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10 reasons why you need to hire a local guide for Kanchenjunga trek

10 reasons why you need to hire a local guide for Kanchenjunga trek

Kanchenjunga Trek is one of the challenging, yet best treks in Nepal, located in the far north-eastern part of Nepal. It is also popularly known as off-the-beaten-path-trek in Nepal, which takes you to the lap of the third highest mountain in the world i.e., Mt. Kanchenjunga with a height of 8,586m. The off-the-beaten trail of Kanchenjunga passes through the wilderness and remoteness of isolated villages. So, if you are planning for a solo trek to Kanchenjunga, then you immediately need to drop the idea for your own safety. Remember, to soak yourself in the mesmerizing Himalayas and sceneries of this region, nothing can be better than hiring a Kanchenjunga Trek expert guide. 

Somewhere in the Kanchenjunga Circuit
Somewhere in the Kanchenjunga Circuit

Kanchenjunga falls under the restricted region in Nepal, so you need to obtain the Restricted Area Permit, which demands at least 2 trekkers in a group, authorized local trekking agency and government-licensed local guide for Kanchenjunga trek.  


Kanchenjunga region wasn’t opened for trekking and exploration till 1987 because the government was aiming to protect and preserve its surrounding. So, unlike other popular treks in Nepal like Everest Base Camp Trek, Annapurna Base Camp Trek etc., this trekking destination hasn’t been explored by many travelers. However, nowadays along with the growing number of teahouses and the development of roads, Kanchenjunga Trek has also been able to increase the inflow of trekkers. Be it to explore the pristine culture or the huge peaks in Nepal, or the serene environment, there can be no better option than Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek with a guide.

By now you must have understood that Kanchenjunga Trek without a guide is not possible. Also, you might be wondering about the reason behind the compulsory requirement of the guide to trek in Kanchenjunga region. So, here we have tried our best to list out the major top 10 reasons that will make you hire a local guide for Kanchenjunga trek.

1. Remote and Restricted Area

Kanchenjunga is one of the most remote regions of Nepal, which is yet to be explored. So, it is full of danger to walk on the trail alone that is not traveled frequently. Also, the remoteness has resulted in the lack of infrastructure facilities. It will be hard for the independent Kanchenjunga trekkers to deal with all the requirements on their own in such a wild and isolated region. Because of this reason, you can’t stop yourself from hiring an experienced guide for Kanchenjunga Circuit trek as they will be your companion for the whole journey.

Exploring remote and Restricted Area in the Kanchenjunga circuit; one of the reasons to hire a local guide
Exploring remote and Restricted Area in the Kanchenjunga circuit

Until recently, Kanchenjunga region was accessible only through camping trek because of its ruralness; however, now it is popular as a teahouse trek in Nepal. 

Likewise, to preserve and protect the beauty of this region, the Government of Nepal has declared it as a restricted region. Moreover, this region also has several human settlements that show the unique and original culture, inspiring lifestyle, and warm hospitality. So, to keep them away from the touch of modernization, all the villages from Tapethok VDC to Yamphuding VDC have been labeled as restricted villages. Thus, you can’t freely stroll around those villages and enjoy the visibility on your own; you mandatorily need a Kanchenjunga trek guide.

2. Experiencing the Local Culture

Trekking in the Kanchenjunga region is filled with locally rich culture and traditions as it goes through culturally and historically rich villages. The lower part of this region houses the Rai, Gurung, Limbu along with Brahmin and Chhetri communities. The upper part of this region is inhabited by the warm-hearted Sherpas, who follow the Tibetan culture and lifestyle. When you trek with a Kanchenjunga guide, they will take you to the villages and introduce you among the locals. Seeing farming, houses, people, and more is nothing until you meet and interact with them. 

Experiencing the local culture in the Kanchenjunga region; one of the reasons to hire a local guide
Experiencing the local culture in the Kanchenjunga region

Roaming around the local villages and interacting with the locals will provide you the idea about their traditional lifestyle. Since the people of this region are hospitable, they will invite you to dinner where you can learn and explore the ethnic dishes, and way of living. Moreover, you will pass through various monasteries, historical places and more during this trek. Kanchenjunga Trek guides are the ones familiar with the hidden places so they might also tell you stories, myths, and facts about those places.

3. Stunning Views of the Himalayas & Sceneries

Kanchenjunga region is gifted by nature because here one can get a glimpse of the four tallest mountains in Nepal – Lhotse (8,516m), Everest (8,848m), Kanchenjunga (8,586m), Makalu (8,481m) and so on. Besides, this region also has stunning valleys like Tamor valley, Ghunsa, Ramche, Lhonak, Khambachen and so on. However, to get the magnificent view of Himalayas and the valleys, trekkers need to get to the right spot. Solo trekkers might not have the knowledge of the best viewpoints. So, hiring a guide for Kanchenjunga trek is a must to enjoy the journey to the fullest by exploring natural views and scenery. 

Stunning Views of the Himalayas in Kanchenjunga region
Stunning Views of the Himalayas in Kanchenjunga region

Remember, ending at the right spot not only gives you clear visibility, but also helps you capture good photos and videos. So, if you want to experience a good photography and videography journey, don’t even think about a solo trek to Kanchenjunga. 

Kanchenjunga Glaciers such as Tso, Nyukla, Ramdung, and Kumbhakarna are some of the highlights of this region. However, only the trekking guides, having several years of field experience, can lead us to the place, which provides the view of a glacier. They not only take you to the right spot, but also provide a short description about each view. They will stop you frequently and show you the scenes that can’t be found in any other trekking destinations. 

4. Kanchenjunga Trek Difficulty

Trekking in Nepal is associated with so many threats, mainly in higher altitude trek. Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek takes you around 5,153m so there is a high chance for you to get the symptoms of altitude sickness like vomiting, headache, loss of appetite and more. So, if you are trekking solo, then there will be no one to rescue or help you in case of emergency. So, you need to have continuous support from someone who is aware about possible Kanchenjunga Trek difficulties as well as has taken training regarding altitude sickness.

Kanchenjunga Trek difficulties like getting lost, attack from wildlife, unpredictable Kanchenjunga’s weather and so on can be easily minimized with the help of a guide as they will make you feel safe and secure in a strange environment. 

Crossing the river without bridge along with a guide during Kanchenjunga circuit trek; one of the reasons to hire a local guide
Crossing the river without bridge along with a guide during Kanchenjunga circuit trek

Kanchenjunga Trek goes through a few ascents and descents. Likewise, you need to walk through rough and rocky trails. Moreover, you need to cross the three high challenging passes – Sele La pass (4,200m), Mir-gin La Pass (4,026m) and Sinon La Pass (4,663m), which will add extra difficulties to Kanchenjunga Trek. Remember, accidents and injuries don’t come by informing you. It can happen anywhere and at any time. So, always hire a professional guide to trek Kanchenjunga as you will be looked after by a qualified person in case of any trouble.

5. Kanchenjunga Trekking Route

Kanchenjunga Trekking trail goes through narrow paths, lush green forests, unsigned roads, isolated places and so on. Not only freshers, but the experienced trekkers also get puzzled while going through this route. Also, the trails are rocky, dusty, steepy and so on. With several turns, which will obviously confuse the solo trekkers of Kanchenjunga trek. In this type of situation, the one who can help you is only a guide. Kanchenjunga Trek guides are well-known about the terrain as they lead the trekking in this region from time-to-time, which makes them aware about each corner. 

Some trekkers embark on this trekking journey thinking that they will accomplish the whole tour with the help of maps. However, you must know that most of the trekking routes of Kanchenjunga are not properly mapped. 

Glimpse of rocky and confusing trails of Kanchenjunga massif
Glimpse of rocky and confusing trails of Kanchenjunga massif

Likewise, it is also hard for you to get the true information about the trail from any website or book. Moreover, you will not always be surrounded by the local people to ask for their help in finding the routes. Thus, the only option to reach the Base Camp on time is by hiring an experienced guide for Kanchenjunga trek who will guide you throughout the journey. They have the shortest way to explore the new area, just like how you know the best way to get to your hometown. 

Do you want to plan your trip with Himalayan Glacier?
If yes, then tell us about your trip to Kanchenjunga trek, activities you want to experience, and what exactly you expect from the whole journey. Feel free to contact us and we will answer your queries within 24 hours, and help you design a comfortable trip by preparing a tailor-made itinerary to your dream destination. 

6. Kanchenjunga Trek Permits  

As per the rules of the Government of Nepal, it is mandatory for you to obtain the special Restricted Area Permit for the Kanchenjunga Trek. Without this permit, you can’t trek to this region. The main thing is that you can’t acquire this permit on your own. You will need the help of any authorized trekking agency in Nepal and a government-licensed guide for Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek. Kanchenjunga Permit cost varies as per the season and the number of staying days.  

Those who are fascinated by solo trek to Kanchenjunga can do it by obtaining ‘Ghost Permit’; however, it is not affordable as the Kanchenjunga Trek cost will become exorbitant because you need to pay double permit cost.

To get the restricted area permit, you need to visit the Department of Immigration along with the guide provided by your trekking agency. Remember, a freelance guide will not work; a government certified guide is the only way to get a permit and explore the region. Besides these two requirements, you should also meet another trekker – your group should consist of at least 2 people, excluding guides and porters. 

7. Better Lodging and Booking

Kanchenjunga trek is off-the-beaten-trek in Nepal, where it is very hard to find comfortable teahouses. However, if you trek to Kanchenjunga with a guide, then they will take all the responsibilities regarding advance booking. They will look after your accommodation both in Kathmandu and Kanchenjunga region. Even in the high trekking season, guides will manage a high-quality accommodation at a low price as they have a good relationship with the owner of teahouses.

Guides ensuring safe accommodation in tents; one of the reasons to hire a local guide
Guides ensuring safe accommodation in tents

Because of their several years of experience, they know well about the local dishes, accommodation facilities and safety of each teahouse. So, you will always end up getting the best among the rest. Sometimes because of the friendly relation between a guide and owner, you might also get complimentary food, beverage, and special services. Likewise, a guide will also manage the transportation to and from the trailhead. Overall, Kanchenjunga Trek guide will help you provide the standard services logistics. 

8. Mental and Physical Support

As said before, trekking in the Kanchenjunga region is physically demanding. There might be chances for you to feel very low and want to give up. Trekkers who are trying to achieve an independent trek to Kanchenjunga might sometimes lose their confidence and return without completing the whole journey. However, if you are with the Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek guide, then they will constantly boost and motivate you. They will help you deal with the new challenges and sacrifice a lot in making your trip successful. 

Trekking with a guide providing constant mental and physical support for successful completion of trek
Trekking with a guide providing constant mental and physical support for successful completion of trek

We, Himalayan Glacier, don’t hire a freelance guide as we have our own qualified, dedicated, and experienced guide who will look after the safety and security of the trekkers. Even if you are a female trekker, you can happily choose to trek with our guide.

Likewise, sometimes you might get tired of pushing yourself too hard to keep up with the journey. At times like that, local guides will teach you to keep a slow pace, which will also help you in minimizing the effect of altitude sickness. Moreover, when you are too weak to carry the overall backpack, the guide will share your physical load. Overall, presence of a guide in Kanchenjunga trek will help a lot in enhancing better memories by eliminating the Kanchenjunga Trek difficulties.

9. Break the Language Barrier

Kanchenjunga region is very remote as a result it is very hard to find people having the ability to speak English. Only a small group of locals know about English language and can speak a few words. Likewise, even if they speak English, it will be very hard for you to understand their accent. So, if you are planning for Kanchenjunga Trek solo, you will be unable to interact with the local people. Remember, without interacting with the locals, you can’t experience the beauty of this region. So, hiring an expert guide for Kanchenjunga Trek is your #1 requirement while planning for this trip. 

Beautiful village along the Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek
Beautiful village along the Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek

It is always fun to learn the basic Nepalese words like ‘Namastey’, ‘Sanchai Hunuhuncha’ and so on with your local guide as whenever you utter these words, it will bring a smile on the face of locals.

Trekking in Nepal is wonderful when you can communicate with people, laugh with them, and share their lifestyle. However, Kanchenjunga trek without a guide will not allow you to do it. Whenever you get lost or want to ask help, you will be unable to express your feelings in front of them. In a situation like this, a guide might come handy as they will translate for you. Always check the accent of the guide before embarking on the journey so that you can be sure that you understand whatever they speak.  

10. Hassle-Free Trekking

Everyone wants to enjoy a hassle-free trekking as trek itself means getting away from the distraction and hectic routine of daily life. However, if you wish for an independent trek to Kanchenjunga, then it will be nothing more than a burden. From transportation to packing, everything must be managed by yourselves. It will only stress you more and excite less. However, if you travel to the Kanchenjunga region with a guide, then they will look after you right from the beginning until the end of the trip,

Hassle free trekking with a guide in Kanchenjunga region

When it comes to trekking, there are so many things that one must look after. And if you fail in managing even one of them, then the success rate of Kanchenjunga will decrease. So, we always recommend you to hire a guide and enjoy your vacation to the fullest. They will look after the required permits for Kanchenjunga trek, help in customizing the Kanchenjunga Base camp Itinerary, and prepare the packing list for Kanchenjunga trek. Thus, Kanchenjunga Trek guide will provide hassle-free trekking by managing everything for you on your behalf. 

Tips for hiring a guide for Kanchenjunga Trek

No matter if you are trekking through a local trekking agency or with just a government certified guide, it’s your right to ask the guide some questions. You will be spending more than three weeks with that person. It means your whole trip depends upon the credibility of that person. 

Here are a few tips for hiring a guide for Kanchenjunga Trek:

1. Government-Licensed and Insured guide

You can trek the Kanchenjunga region only with a government certified guide. So, before hiring a guide for Kanchenjunga trek, first check the license of the guide and make sure that he/she is authorized by the specific association. Remember, professional guides always have a valid ID Card. Don’t let yourself be deceived by a cunning guide out there. Also, it will be good if you hire a guide with insurance.

2. Professional and Experienced Guides

As said before, you will be spending more than 3 weeks with your guide. So, you must make sure that the guide you are planning your trip is confident enough to deal with all the Kanchenjunga trek difficulties. Also, the guide should have proper information about the trekking route, distance and so on. They should lead you like a leader and be able to predict the weather changes, symptoms of AMS and so on.

Early morning beverage in the remote region of Kanchenjunga
Early morning beverage in the remote region of Kanchenjunga

3. Language Abilities

Language is one of the key criteria to look after while hiring a guide for Kanchenjunga trek. Language barriers can lead to the failure of the trek. So, before embarking on the trip, spend some time with the guides and talk to them. Make sure that you give enough time in selecting a guide so that you are sure that they are fluent English speakers with a good accent (or any of your native language). 

Cost of Kanchenjunga Trek Guide

Guides and porters are affordable as well as crucial. There are several authorized local trekking agencies in Nepal that offer government-licensed guides at a very fair price. Along with guides, they provide porters as per your needs. Hiring a guide for Kanchenjunga trek will cost you around USD 30 per day. Likewise, a porter for Kanchenjunga trek will cost around USD 25 – USD 30 per day. 

Cost Includes:

  • Daily wages
  • Insurance charges
  • Daily meals and accommodation
  • Government taxes and trekking agency charges

Cost Excludes:

  • Transportation expenses
  • Tips to guide and porter (it’s not mandatory, but if you are happy with their services, then you can offer them at the end of trek)

If you are looking for an expert guide and team who can lead your group as per your interest and needs, then feel free to contact us to plan your trip to Kanchenjunga.

Short Trek to Kanchenjunga Base Camp

Kanchenjunga Circuit trek usually takes 24-26 days, which is a very long period for someone who wants to complete the trek quickly. So, if you are short on time, but still want to get the taste of trekking in Nepal by visiting Kanchenjunga, then you have the option of Kanchenjunga short trek. It can be completed within 14 days. Likewise, other trekking destinations, this short trek will also offer you the views of snow-capped peaks, green hills, and forests, thundering waterfall, sounding rivers, beautiful landscape, fertile farming lands, rich culture, warm-hearted locals and so on. Isn’t it exciting? 

So, if you love the idea of a short trek to Kanchenjunga, then please feel free to contact us. Our travel experts will help design a customized itinerary as per your needs and availability. We, Himalayan Glacier, also offer short Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek of around 16 days. So, hurry up and book your date! 

Overall, the Kanchenjunga region is full of surprises and to unfold all those surprises a trekking guide is mandatory. You might think that when there is google translator and google maps, Kanchenjunga trek without a guide is easy. But if you ever think in this way you might be wrong because no matter how technical the nation goes, guides will never go out of fashion. Kanchenjunga trek guide is the only reason behind hassle-free trekking, success rate of Kanchenjunga trek, and wonderful trekking experience.

We, Himalayan Glacier, have been offering well-organized Kanchenjunga trek for several years. We also provide a well-trained and government certified trekking guide. All our guides speak fluent English and have perfect knowledge about the trekking route and local culture of the Kanchenjunga region. If you ever want to hire an experienced local guide for Kanchenjunga trek and porter services, then always remember us. Further, if you have any queries about hiring process of guide or any other trekking packages, feel free to contact or WhatsApp us at +1-860-593-1567.

About the author

A leading adventure & tour operator in the Himalayas since 1992, Himalayan Glacier Adventure & Travel Company® is the number. 1 guide service adventure choreographer on Mount Everest Base Camp and beyond. Continuing its decades-old legacy, Himalayan Glacier is a little different from other adventure & tour operators. Each of our holidays is truly a tailor-made package which we design for all ages, groups, families & solo travelers. We have veteran mountaineering leaders who have been into this industry for several decades. So, we offer you complete choice and freedom to explore the real pleasure of traveling.
2 Responses
  1. jane

    I would like to do this but would have to go slowly and I do not need to get right up to the base camp, it is the area I am most interested in, ie the countryside. I have lived in eastern Nepal when I was young. Is it possible to do slowly obviously with help and guides and going with others? If necessary I could stay in a village and wait while others go on ahead to more testing levels. what do you think?

    I have two new knees but can walk well just need to look after them and not go too fast. I have in the past climbed to 18,000 ft but would not want to go very high again at my age. I had brief alt sickness around 16,000 ft but took Lassix and then was alright but would not want to push myself right up high again,

    many thanks jane elliot

    1. Himalayan Glacier

      Definitely Jane it is possible to customize the Kanchenjunga trek according to your requirement. One of our trek specialist will reach out to you with detail information on the trip.

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