You might have heard about the gorgeous Gokyo Lakes in the Khumbu region and the adventurous trek that it takes to reach this high alpine lake. Well, in this blog, we'll be giving you all the information about the Gokyo Lake and Renjo La pass trek and tips to make the venture even more fantastic.
At Nepal Gateway Trekking, we have taken a lot of travelers to the Gokyo Lakes and helped them cross the challenging Renjo La pass. Our team has outlined this blog, including all of our expertise and knowledge about the trek. You are learning from the experts and from our experience.
So, first, let's talk about the...
Gokyo Lakes is well-known for its sparkling blue and green water. Located in the Everest region, the Gokyo lakes are 5,000 meters above, making it one of the world’s highest freshwater lakes. The Gokyo lakes make a chain of six turquoise glacial-fed lakes, which is a breathtaking view and makes it hard to take your eyes off them.
Gokyo Lake and Renjo La pass trek 2022/2023 Overview
Gokyo Lake and Renjo La pass trek also go by the name, Renjo la pass trek. It is a thrilling and extremely adventurous trekking journey. The trek can take you up to 5,360 meters above sea level offering you views of lakes, rivers, and high mountains. These snow-capped high mountains include some 8,000 meters mountain peaks such as Mt. Lhoste (8,516 m), Mt. Makalu (8,463 m), Mt. Cho-Oyu (8,188 m), and Mt. Everest (8,849 m) all in your view.
Trekking through this trail has much more to offer than just mountains. You get to see the largest glacier in the Himalayas- the Ngozumpa glacier and explore remote villages. Some remote and off-beat path of the route is inhabited by the solitary Tibetian-Buddhist Sherpa civilization, who are residing there for centuries.
Gokyo Lake and Renjo La Pass trek is less crowded but extremely rewarding. From exploring the rich culture and lifestyle of Sherpas and the Khumbu region to running across beautiful waterfalls, green valleys, and pleasant glaciers. This trek won’t disappoint you in any way, as it has a challenging and demanding route. To make it even more challenging, trekkers can integrate this Gokyo Lake and Renjo La Pass trek with Cho La Pass trek, which connects Everest Base Camp to Gokyo.
Gokyo Lake and Renjo La Pass Trek difficulty
Gokyo Lake and Renjo La pass trek is a high-altitude trek. It is considered a moderate/difficult trek, given the length of the journey and high elevation. If we compare the Gokyo Lake Renjo la pass trail with other challenging trails like Everest three pass in the Khumbu region, it is not so tedious. The trekkers get to enjoy subtle offbeat, steep walking. It does not mean Gokyo and Renjo la pass trek is not physically demanding. The trek does require your physical resilience.
The level of difficulty also depends on other factors, such as weather and isolation of the region, which demands you to be mentally prepared. You can see a transition from a sunny day to a cloudy real quick. Unlike the EBC trek, Gokyo Lake and Renjo La pass trekking route see comparatively less crowd. The trail follows a less happening course, so the limitations on modern comforts are bigger.
Even though this Gokyo Lake and Renjo La pass trek is not the highest-altitude pass (if we compare it with Thorong La pass or Cho La pass), trekking uphill towards Renjo La pass can steadily raise the risk of altitude sickness. The best way to avoid this minor altitude sickness is to ascend slowly. Trekkers see the symptoms, and most of the time, they get cured by taking preventive measures & medicine.
High altitude can affect a few trekkers if they climb above 4,500 meters, but here you will not spend a lot of time above 4000 meters, which makes it less problematic in terms of altitude-sickness issues. And not to forget the well-planned itinerary that we have designed in a way that lets you get acclimated to the climate. Your body can get acclimated as you rest for two days (in Namche Bazaar & Gokyo Ri) between the trek. Read more about Altitude Sickness >>>
To participate in the Gokyo Lake and Renjo La pass trekking, you need an excellent amount of physical endurance and stamina. If you do not have good physical strength, then you can build it. You do not need to hire a trainer or something for that. All you need to do is some strength and endurance training to ready your muscles for the upcoming challenge.
You can achieve this by walking long paths, jogging, cycling, walking on a treadmill, or even hiking in uneven areas. You can start your preparations two weeks before your trek starts (four weeks even better), and you’ll be all set for your amazing journey. Your main focus should be incorporating cardio in your training.
Accommodation & Food
Gokyo Lake & Renjo La pass trek has lodge/teahouse accommodation facilities available on the trail. Generally, we offer twin sharing rooms, but if you want a room for one, let us know your preference at the time of booking. The lodges along the Renjo La pass trekking route are comfortable and clean, with every necessary item available for your service. It may not be as luxurious as the hotels that you may be used to staying at but cater to your basic needs.
On your trek, you will be provided with all three meals, including breakfast, lunch & dinner. For breakfast, you will be getting pancakes, toast, tea, coffee, juice, eggs, and a lot more. For lunch/dinner, you will be having dal bhat, pasta, momos, chow mein, soup, etc. The meals are given as per the menu of the lodges. The menu has a wide variety of Nepali and Tibetan dishes.
Meals & drinking water
Eating a healthy and hygienic meal on your journey should be your priority, as this trekking is going to be physically challenging. Therefore, it is highly advised not to smoke and consume alcohol or any junk food, which can wreck your health even slightly. Thus, choose what you consume wisely. Your meals should contain enough carbohydrates to give you the energy to walk long hours. Usually, by the end of a venture like this, the trekkers often lose 4 to 5 kgs. So, do not worry about putting on weight during the trek.
When you go for such trekking, you sweat a lot. You may not feel very thirsty due to the cold weather, but there is a high possibility of your body getting dehydrated. Make sure you consume at least 3 to 4 liters of water per day as you trek. You may consider bringing electrolyte powder or any flavors to make drinking water easier for you. You can also carry water purification tablets.
Best time to trek to Gokyo Lake and Renjo La
The best time for Gokyo Lake and Renjo La pass trekking is autumn (October to November) and spring (March to April), which are peak seasons for trekking in Nepal. Trekking in these seasons can be extremely favorable for you in terms of the ease of trek as well as for enjoying the scenic beauty of lush vegetation and mountains. The moderate temperature of these two seasons ensures you a smooth and convenient journey.
On the other hand, during winter and monsoon/summer, a trek to Gokyo Lake and Renjo La pass is not advisable. However, it is not at all impossible to go. In winter, trekking can be attempted in December, but in January it becomes extremely hard to plan a trek to a higher elevation as the trail gets blocked by snow most of the time. December to February months are less crowded, but then again, trekking in cold weather is not accessible if you are new to this.
Similarly, in the monsoon season, trekking is possible. However, it takes a lot of effort. Slippery and muddy trails, landslides, and floods can arrive anytime. If you plan the trek in the right months, which is either till mid-June or the last week of August, then Gokyo Lakes & Renjo La pass trek can be attempted in monsoon too.
Trekking permits for Gokyo Lake and Renjo La pass
To start your journey to Gokyo Lakes and Renjo La pass, you first need to have a permit. You mandatory need trekking permits for traveling in the Everest region. How do you get one?
You do not need to worry about your permits and all the hassle that it takes to get one. Because once you confirm your booking with us, it is our responsibility to arrange it for you. All the permit cost is included in the package cost.
For Gokyo Lake and Renjo La Pass Trek, trekkers need to have three permits, and those are:
Sagarmatha National Park entry permit
Khumbu-Pasang Lhamu Rural Municipality permit
Gokyo Lake and Renjo La Pass Trek without a guide
Trekking to Gokyo Lakes without a guide is not impossible. You can surely attempt if you would like. But, it is not recommended to trek alone to a high pass as the weather in the Everest region is unpredictable. It doesn’t take long to turn from sunny to cloudy and then stormy. This can only make your trekking experience challenging and inconvenient. Moreover, crossing a high Himalayan pass is more strenuous than you may think. It's challenging for experienced trekkers to navigate through the winding trails of the Himalayas on their own.
A guide has all the knowledge that you may require for a safe and beautiful journey. They are capable of assessing the weather and analyzing any possible risks or mishaps that may arrive during the journey. Since they are well-trained for this, they can take safety measures on time and rescue you from any misfortunate situation. They know what is best for a trekker and take care of you throughout the journey.
Guide & Porter
When you book with us, we ensure you a safe and beautiful journey by providing you with a friendly and well-trained guide. Booking a guide not only ensures a risk-free trek but can also be helpful when interacting with locals for accommodation during your trek. They can help you get good offers and discounts on booking. So, it is required for a guide to be multilingual, and our certified guides are capable of doing just that.
Another factor that you should be considering while trekking is hiring a porter. They can help you carry your luggage. Two members can have one porter who can carry around 20 - 22 kg. For your convenience, we advise that you hire a porter as well as a guide.
Kathmandu Lukla flight
Kathmandu Lukla flights are known for their overwhelming experience and delays. This is one of the highest landing flights in the world. The flying route is full of giant mountains and rocky hills. Because of the high altitude and unpredictable weather, Kathmandu Lukla flights are recognized for their delays & cancellations, especially in the off-season.
In case we have to face a delay or cancellation, we'll schedule the next flight. If our guest's budget allows, we also hire a helicopter flight to Lukla from Kathmandu. On a sharing basis, the per head cost is reasonable and offers a comfortable flight experience with jaw-dropping landscapes.
Your first day of the trip begins with a flight from Kathmandu to Lukla, which is a short 30-minute flight. This domestic flight to Lukla is thrilling and filled with the picturesque beauty of mountain views and green valleys. We are flying to Lukla, after which we will be continuing our trek to Phakding (2,610 m) and onwards.
The trail passes through the Khumbu Pasang Lhamu Rural Municipality office, from where it ascends towards the Dudh Koshi river. This will take 3-4 hours of walking on a combination of the uphill and downhill rocky path, but it is pretty straightforward, so this would go easily. Once the walk is over, you will reach Phakding, a village filled with greenery that offers a breathtaking view of mountain Khumbila (5,761m).
Why go on Gokyo Lake and Renjo La Pass Trek?
A 13 days trek to Gokyo Lake and Renjo La Pass Trek is loaded with challenges and thrills. It is because of these challenges that the trek is so rewarding. With so many options to explore, such as the Khumbu region, Gokyo valley, Sherpa settlements, Buddhism culture & tradition, and many more, the Gokyo Lake and Renjo La pass trekking is a hard-to-miss trek. There are more reasons for that:
It is an off-beat trekking trail, but an exotic one. Unlike the Everest Base Camp trek, which is packed with more and more crowds, this trek to Gokyo valley is less crowded for a reason, and that is because it is away from the mainstream.
Explore something new:
If you are not new to trekking but still looking for a different experience, we suggest you go for Gokyo Lake and Renjo La pass trek. Trekking through Sagarmatha National Park, Namche Bazaar, the warm hospitality of the Sherpas, one of the world’s highest hotels- Everest View Hotel, thrilling suspension bridges, stunning alpine lakes, and a lot more is a once-in-a-lifetime experience for you even if you are an experienced trekker.
Hidden corners of the Everest region:
The trek lies in the Solukhumbu district of the Sagarmatha National Park region, which is home to Sherpa, Gurung, Rai, and other communities. The pass was once a trade route between Tibet and Sherpas. You trek to Phakding, from where you hike to a lively town called Namche Bazaar. To explore Gokyo village you trek to Dole and then to Machhermo. Relish the serenity of the Gokyo lakes and catch gorgeous views from Gokyo Ri. After crossing over Renjo La pass, you descend to Thame to visit a monastery.
The trail goes through Dudh Koshi valley and Gokyo valley, which has many eye-catching turquoise lakes, waterfalls, streams & rhododendron forests. It's a journey of admiring towering mountains that become your friends. The stunning Himalayan view with its fresh air will sway your heart and keep you exhilarated as you trek your way.
You will be looking at five magnificent 8,000 meters above mountain peaks, such as Cho Oyu, Everest, Lhotse, Makalu, and Kanchenjunga. The rest of the trails are decorated with many hills and views of snow-capped peaks like Ama Dablam, Khumbutse, Gyachung Kang, Thamserku, Chamlang, and Nuptse, etc.
Face the challenges:
Gokyo Lake and Renjo La Pass Trek take you to 5,360 meters from sea level with a chance to experience more than just trekking. You will be pushing yourself and testing your endurance while crossing Renjo La pass and glaciers. You will constantly challenge your strength as you traverse these rocky trails and lush Himalayan forests. The bare minimum services test your perseverance and ability to adjust to an unfamiliar environment.
Gokyo Lake and Renjo La Pass Trek cost break down
Our package for the Gokyo Lake and Renjo La Pass trek will cost you USD 1280 in total. It includes your ground transportation, meals/accommodation during trekking, permits, and two-night accommodation, including breakfast & welcome/farewell dinners. The package cost also covers government taxes and travel service charges.
This package will take care of your basic needs, for instance, a first aid kit, a Gokyo Renjo La Pass Trekking map, a duffel bag & down jacket (to be returned to the company at the end of the trek), and your round flight ticket from Kathmandu/Lukla/Kathmandu. In case of emergency, we use your travel insurance to provide you with immediate medical air evacuation.
What this package will not include is your lunch and dinner in Kathmandu, travel insurance, international flight tickets, personal expenses, such as shopping, extra meals, beverages, tips, etc. You can customize the Gokyo Renjo La pass trek itinerary with us. Changes in itinerary may also affect cost.
Nepal Entry Information & Personal Expense
Entry points: Your entry point in the country will be from Tribhuvan International Airport in Kathmandu. When you enter the country, immigration officials put stamps on your passport and give you access. If you are entering via land border, you'll do the same obligations at land entry points.
Visa: You can get your visa easily once you arrive at Tribhuvan International Airport in Kathmandu. A multiple-entry tourist visa for 30 days and 90 days can be obtained for US $50 and US $135, respectively. If you are staying for a short duration, then you can avail of a 15 days tourist visa for the US $25. To avail of the visa, do not forget to keep at least two passport-sized photographs. Citizens of some countries do not get on-arrival visas in Nepal, so do check the visa status once.
Airport pickup/drop: Upon your arrival at Tribhuvan International Airport in Kathmandu, our team members will pick you up from there and take you to the hotel, where you can take a rest and enjoy your stay in Kathmandu. Once your trekking journey is over, we will bid you goodbye by offering a farewell dinner, and later our team will be dropping you back at the airport terminal.
Personal expenses: Your expenses may include everything that is not a part of your package, including your shopping expenses, snacks, beverages, international flight fare, entry visa fees, tips for guides and porters, extra meals, and emergency funds.
Travel Insurance: Getting yourself travel insurance before starting your trekking journey is a must. You may at any point in time get sick or need some kind of emergency medical treatment, so travel insurance prepares you for your times in crisis. It covers your medical expenses, loss of luggage, and any helicopter evacuation you might need.
Pre-preparation: Choosing the right season and training ahead of time is something you should do before booking the trek.
Charging: Electricity and battery charge points will be available in most of the villages on your trekking journey, but it is highly advised to carry an extra battery for your gadgets if possible.
Cash: Always carry extra cash for your expenses. You will find the last ATM in Namche Bazaar, so in case you run out of cash you can always withdraw it there.
Luggage: You can either lock your luggage in the hotel locker or carry them in a duffel bag that is capable of holding 10 kg.
Travel Insurance: Take your travel insurance seriously and make sure you get it done before your trek.
Trekking essentials: Carry toiletries like hand wipes, hand sanitizer, soap, towel, etc, as well as moisturizers, sunscreens, and lip balms.
Gadget essentials: Carry extra batteries, solar power banks, camera, and torch light.
For safety: It is no harm in carrying cold weather outfits, raincoat, shade hat, water bottle, lightweight thermal tops, trekking boots, passport and extra passport photocopies, and a duffel bag.
Get ready for an adventurous and exciting trekking journey to Gokyo and Renjo la pass. Explore the beautiful Khumbu region that leads you to a beautiful and exotic Gokyo valley that can mesmerize you with its beautiful sparkling glacial lakes and panoramic Himalayan views.
It is an off-beat trekking trail that is worth exploring for its rewarding and at the same time, challenging factor. Our certified guide can help your trekking experience to go smoothly and more memorable. Let us know when you are all set for the journey. We'll organize the best Gokyo Lake and Renjo La pass trek for you.