What are the Best Seasons to go Nepal?

Published date: September 02, 2020

Namaste and welcome to the Himalayan kingdom Nepal! During this worldwide pandemic of Coronavirus, we hope you are staying safe, well and working out keeping fit for the future, for as sure as night follows day, brighter days will surely come. In normal times two meters would feel like a distance, let alone the many miles between us at present. In the meantime a few words from us provide some insight into what to expect on a trek, depending on the time of year you choose to visit the Himalayas.

Some people are serious about mountains, no matter what the elements they love being out there in nature, accepting any challenge that may come their way. There is no getting away from the fact that the mighty Himalayas have a magnetic appeal that gets into the blood. For the addicts there is never a bad time for a hike in the foothills of the highest mountain range on earth. However, twist out arm a little and we will admit some months are more welcoming than others.

The gods will always dictate weather patterns here, so predicting just how it is going to be on a particular day is not always easy. There are of course times of year when you can be fairly certain what the weather will do.

Some folk say Nepal has six seasons, but they are kind of splitting hairs. In general Nepal has four just like the majority of countries in the world such as:-

  • Spring
  • Summer
  • Autumn
  • Winter


Spring – From March to May

Top of the world Mt. Everest

Spring is a great time to come over and test your legs amongst the most spectacular mountains on the planet. With the temperature slowly rising from the depths of the harsh cold winter months, Nepal comes alive once more. Days are generally predictable with nature ready to breathe fresh life into the hillside. Lakes chill out and birds begin to welcome in the regeneration of what is to come.

Yes spring is a great season; it is the time to see lush rhododendron forests in full bloom cutting a blaze of color across the Himalayan foothills. Birding enthusiasts are in their element with many of the most beautiful birds gracing the trails. Treks at lower elevations (1000m to 3000m) are particularly appealing, especially if you have a young family. With virgin trails there is plenty of time to relax and enjoy some wonderful days in the mountains.

At lower altitudes, mornings and evenings can be quite chilly before sunrise and after the sun has dropped below the mountain peaks, it pays to have a layer or two at hand. Days are mostly sunny and pleasantly warm.

If you are planning to go higher, it is also a very good time to move on up the trail to get a more intimate experience of these mighty giants. With winter temperatures fading in the higher regions, there are some very tempting vigorous days awaiting you on the trail. Temperatures are moderate with generally high skies along with clear sunny and warm trekking days.
 

Pros for Spring Trekking:

  • Comfortable temperatures in the upper hills and lower mountain ranges. Between 18-23º C
  • Warmer days and warmer nights.
  • On the higher altitude treks where snow accumulated, trails are opening up as winter melts away. High mountain passes over 5000m come into their own; Cho La, Larke La and Thorong La to name few.
  • Less chance of flight cancellations into mountain regions, particularly if you are planning the Everest region.
  • Quieter trails compared to the main autumn season of October and November.
  • Spring is also expedition season in Nepal when climbers from all over the world come to conquer their own personal challenge. This is a great time to mingle and share experiences as you trek alongside them, especially the trek to Everest Base Camp, Manaslu Base Camp.
  • The best opportunity of enjoying religious colour festival Holi and Buddha Jayanti
     

Cons:

  • As summer approaches, conditions can get quite hot and sticky at lower altitudes.
  • There are possibilities of mountain clouds as the day builds; generally nights and mornings are clear providing some fabulous mountain views.
     

Recommended Treks in Spring

While Nepal offers wide range of stunning trekking routes, it might be injustice to take a few names. However, we recommend you the most satisfied and shouldn't miss it.

The most Popular Treks:

1. Everest Base Camp Trek
2. Everest Three High Passes Trek
3. Gokyo Valley Trek
4. Gokyo Valley with Everest Base Camp Trek
5. Pikey Peak Trek
6. Annapurna Circuit with Tilicho Lake Trek
7. Khopra Ridge Trek
8. Mardi Himal Trek
9. Annapurna Base Camp (ABC) Trek
10. Langtang Valley Trek
11. Langtang Gosaikunda Pass Trek

 

Off the Beaten Path Treks:

1. Manaslu Circuit Trek
2. Manaslu Tsum Valley Trek
3. Nar Phu Valley Trek
4. Upper Mustang Trek
5. Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek
6. Makalu Base Camp Trek
7. Dhaulagiri Circuit Trek
8. Lower Dolpo Trek
9. Upper Dolpo Trek

Summer – From June to August

Trekking in Summer

Monsoon is a yearly visitor, the dates above are approximate. Sometimes the monsoon begins later and finishes later but these dates cover the most intense period of rain in Nepal. Trekking over this period is significantly reduced, but as ever in Nepal there are always people from all over the world on the trails. Temperatures are hot especially at lower altitudes with clouds and haze often limiting views. The landscape would be beautifully lush in summer with brighter green fields, numerous cascading waterfalls, diverse of flora and fauna and much more fresh air.

Trekking at lower altitudes is still very possible and enjoyable on the better trails. It is also worth remembering it doesn’t rain every day. We might encounter rain a couple of hours at afternoon and night which we can avoid beginning our journey earlier in the morning. If you want to stay “rain free” treks to the regions of Mustang and Dolpo are very tempting exceptions as both lie in the rain shadow in Nepal. In general peak rains occur in July, from the end of July onwards the rain begins to taper off as autumn approaches.
 

Pros for Summer Treks:

  • You are In Nepal, one of the most compelling places in the world.
  • If you don’t mind the occasional heavy rain, lower altitude trekking especially in the Annapurna Region can be very enjoyable.
  • Lower price
  • Best way of avoiding crowds and enjoying with core beauties
  • More options and flexibility choosing beautiful tea houses during hike
  • The more remote exotic treks of Upper Mustang, Nar Phu Valley and Dolpo lie in the rain shadow of Nepal, unaffected by the monsoon. A trek to either of these destinations to explore the richest heritages are ideal in monsoon time.
     

Cons:

  • Restricted clear views everyday
  • Snowbound trails at higher elevations making it basically impossible to trek.
     

Suggested Treks in Summer:

1. Upper Mustang Trek
2. Nar Phu Valley Trek
3. Lower Dolpo Trek
4. Upper Dolpo Trek
5. Everest Base Camp Trek
6. Gokyo Valley Trek
7. Langtang Valley Trek
8. Tilicho Lake with Annapurna Circuit Trek
9. Annapurna Base Camp Trek
10. Ghorepani Poon Hill Trek
11. Khopra Ridge Trek
12. Mardi Himal Trek

Autumn – From September to November

View from Gokyo Ri

Autumn is high season in Nepal; ask most people the question “what are the best seasons to trek in Nepal? Autumn comes out tops. The weather is deliciously good, almost perfect and the views are out of this world.  One thing is certain, if you like company you certainly won’t be alone on the trail. Temperatures are ideal, ranging from between 22c to 27c during the day, nights are cool. If you are trekking early season you may encounter the odd leftover from the monsoon as it can still rain sometimes, mainly in the afternoons. High passes can be difficult to cross early season due to the buildup of snow over the monsoon, but in general you should have no problems.

October arrives, the trails are clear of any lingering snow; skies are brilliantly high with the magnificence of Himalayas standing naked before you in all their glory. As the season moves into November, at higher altitude you may encounter occasional snowfall as the temperature begins to taper off.

Another draw about autumn has to be the plethora of highly impressive festivals Nepal is known for. These colourful displays are deeply significant for Nepali people who remain deeply rooted in religion. With just about every trekking trail open at some stage over the season, you are spoilt for experiences. Autumn in Nepal is a trekkers dream, inspiration itself.
 

Pros for Autumn Treks:

  • The weather would be much clear and stable
  • Days tend to be warmer (though nights are colder heading into winter)
  • Temperatures in the upper hills  and lower mountains area reach between 16 to 24c during a day.
  • Best time for photography and research
  • Less chance of domestic flight cancellations due to weather such as Jomsom, Lukla etc.
  • Great opportunity of combining famous peak climbing with beautiful treks
  • Exploring the biggest festival of Hindu Dashain and Dipawali with locals
  • High chances of successful trip and collecting a life changing experience
  • Getting value of hard earned money
     

Cons:

  • Trails are busier
  • Less flexibility in terms of choosing tea houses due to over crowds
  • The expenses migh go slightly higher than low season
     

Suggested Autumn Treks

The most Popular Treks:

1. Everest Base Camp Trek
2. Everest Three High Passes Trek
3. Gokyo Valley Trek
4. Gokyo Valley with Everest Base Camp Trek
5. Pikey Peak Trek
6. Annapurna Circuit with Tilicho Lake Trek
7. Khopra Ridge Trek
8. Mardi Himal Trek
9. Annapurna Base Camp (ABC) Trek
10. Langtang Valley Trek
11. Langtang Gosaikunda Pass Trek
 

Off the Beaten Path Treks:

1. Manaslu Circuit Trek
2. Manaslu Tsum Valley Trek
3. Nar Phu Valley Trek
4. Upper Mustang Trek
5. Kanchenjunga Circuit Trek
6. Makalu Base Camp Trek
7. Dhaulagiri Circuit Trek
8. Lower Dolpo Trek
9. Upper Dolpo Trek
 

Winter – From December to February

Trekking in Winter

Winter at high altitude means snow in Nepal, trekking can be more challenging at higher elevations, but generally winter is another great season to hit the trail. What’s more it is the ideal time to experience the tremendous warmth and hospitality of the local people. Nepal transforms into a fairy tale winter wonderland, stay in charming cozy lodges around warm fires in the evening with a chance to fully interact with the local mountain community. Treks at lower elevations are particularly appealing, in particular routes around Pokhara in the Annapurna Region. With tranquil trails, winter is a great choice for anyone who prefers a more personal Himalayan adventure. One easy short trek that stands out amongst many is the hike to Poon Hill not far from Pokhara. You will need to wrap up warm at night but generally during the day when the sun is out temperatures are very pleasant for trekking.
 

Pros for Winter Treks:

  • Fewer people on the trail
  • The sky is often very clear and blue during the day and night
  • Monasteries come into their own and are great to visit in winter
  • Great season for photography
  • Saving budget
  • Flexibility on choosing beautiful villages and tea houses during hike
  • Less chances of domestic flight cancellation

Cons:

  • Many of the high passes might be inaccessible due to snow coverage
  • Winter temperatures require more planning and preparation beforehand
     

Suggested Winter Treks

1. Langtang Valley Trek
2. Tamang Heritage Trek
3. Annapurna Base Camp Trek
4. Ghorepani Poon Hill Trek
5. Khopra Ridge Trek
6. Mardi Himal Trek
7. Everest Panorama Trek
8. Pikey Peak Trek

In conclusion, it is not easy to choose one particular season as every season has its own reason for being here in the most spectacular region in the world. Even during the monsoon there are some very rewarding trekking experiences, albeit you are limited for choice. What we can say for certain is, unlike the weather, the essence of Nepal really does not change.

Surely you may also do not prefer to miss more practical and informative blog before travelling to Nepal:-

Trekking in Nepal after Coronavirus

The 10 Best Short Treks in Nepal

Nepal Trekking Permits and Fees Cost

Top Ten Reasons to Hike Manaslu Circuit Trek

About Everest Region Trekking Routes

How Difficult is Kanchenjunga Trek?

Everest Base Camp Trekking Information

All you need to Know about Manaslu Region
 

Have you got everything that you were looking for? Please feel free to drop us a line to discuss in detail with our experts. During these strange surreal times, Nepal is still here patiently waiting to welcome you. Whatever the season and when the world opens up again. See You Soon!

Share it