Nepal being a mountainous country is a home of innumerable trails known as The Great Himalayan Trails covering an extensive trail system that ranges from Humla and Darchula in the west to Kanchenjunga in the east. The diversity of trekking in Nepal is hardly found in any other regions of the world. Among the trekking and hiking areas, Everest, Langtang and the Annapurna regions are known as the popular trekking routes in Nepal. Some of these Himalayan trails such as those in Kanchenjunga, Makalu, Dolpo, and the far West are accessible only via flight and some others such as Langtang and Annapurna trails are also accessible by road transport. Nepal has six diverse vegetation zones ranging from Tropical areas below 1000m through sub tropical 100m-200m, lower temperate 1700m -2700 m, upper temperate zones from 2400 m to 3000 m, subalpine zones 3000 m – 4000 m and alpine zones range from 4000m to the snowline and above snowline lies Himalayan Tundra like wilderness. Each of these zones is well populated with an appropriate flora and fauna.
Trekking in Nepal today has a completely different scenario from that of the sixties. The main trekking areas, National Parks and Conservation Areas accommodate lodges and teahouses where trekkers not only find food and accommodation but also have opportunities to meet other trekkers and locals. You will notice the well maintained and sign posted trails in most of the trekking destinations. The lodges have facilities for charging batteries and the larger villages often have email facilities. Although the popular treks in Kanchenjunga, Everest, Manaslu and Annapurna provide accommodation, the less frequented treks even in those areas and in other areas west of Annapurna will generally require camping support. You can simply find a trail all the year round. Higher levels of precipitation can be found in the southern regions of Nepal. However, some routes along the Great Himalayan Trails lie in the rain shadow, a dry area on the leeward side of a mountains. The rainshadow areas include the northern parts of Mustang, Dolpo where Mt. Annapurna, Mt. Manaslu, Mt. Dhaulagiri and Mt. Saipal directly assist to make them the rainshadow regions. Post monsoon, the weather tends to be clearer. Although winter is good, it is colder and has shorter days and seasonal rain and snow storms affect the spring whereas summer is short and it heralds the monsoons.
The length, the difficulty and timing of the treks vary greatly and therefore transportation becomes a problem and often involves at least two journeys made on domestic scheduled flights. Domestic flights are generally scheduled early in the morning. In case two domestic flights are required, appropriate timing should be allowed from your part. The majority of visitors to Nepal come via Tribhuvan International Airport in Kathmandu where they need to acquire their permits and other documentation either from a trekking agent or from the concerned offices. Trekkers have to show these documents along the trekking routes. If you have limited time to spend in Nepal, you can opt for the half-day hikes from Kathmandu for sightseeing the splendid views of the Himalayas. The treks over stunning Himalayas and challenging mountain passes consume a week or more for completion.