Great Himalaya Trail in Nepal

By Justin Walker and Lauren Smith 20 October 2014
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Getting close to Nepal’s high peaks, the variety of terrain, the multiple cultural experiences and the personal satisfaction of completing such an adventure.

There’s no doubt that the Great Himalaya Trail (GHT) – all 1700km and 152 days of it (there are variations on this) – is the Big One of multi-day treks. There are other uber-long distance treks – the Appalachian and Pacific Crest trails in the USA are just two – but the GHT offers probably the most complete experience when it comes to not only trekking, but also in the variety of terrain you traverse, as well as the myriad cultural experiences along the way as you cross Nepal’s mountainous spine.

The appeal of doing the “full GHT” is why it featured numerous times during Australian Geographic Adventure’s selection process, but this was also backed up by the fact that the GHT can be walked in sections as well. You can do the full-length GHT and the various sections independently, but for those who like most of the planning and logistics taken care of, Aussie adventure travel company World Expeditions offers the full monty traverse and the choice to do one, two, three or – eventually – all eight of the GHT sections.

For those (mad?) keen to do the full guided GHT in one hit, experience and preparation are crucial – as is the ability to pay for it (it ain’t cheap at a touch above $30k; again, do it independently and it’s less costly), and have an employer who, hopefully, understands your dreams regarding the time needed. Get all those variables to align and you are off.

The highlights are myriad – getting up close to Nepal’s high peaks, walking in terrain ranging from humid lowlands to snow-draped alpine areas, and the multiple cultural experiences – as is the satisfaction of completing such an adventure. The GHT experience offered by World Expeditions starts in the east of Nepal, in the Kanchenjunga region, and ends in the west at the border with Tibet, in the town of Hilsa.

If time is an issue then one or more of the seven separate sections in no way detracts from the challenge or the appeal (and it is a lot more feasible budget-wise). In fact, spending eight separate years joining up sections of one of the world’s best treks isn’t a bad way to spend your time!