One of the best kept secrets of Sikkim, the Green Lake Trek is a beautiful yet challenging trek that takes you into the heart of the Himalayas. If you love trekking on untrodden trails, crossing glacial streams and rhododendron forests, surrounded by the solitude of the mountains, this trek is for you. The trek begins in Lachen and takes you to the ethereal Green Lake (4935m) via Tallem, Jakthang and Yabuk. Enjoy unrivalled views of Kanchenjunga as you make your way up the rugged terrain of the Himalayan slopes. This is an arduous trek in Zemu glacier that we complete in 14 days with a couple of rest days in between to let you acclimatise to the changing altitude. There are some steep uphill ascents and challenging treks over uneven terrain of boulders and rocky pebbles. You must be mindful of your steps to avoid slipping. One of the highpoints of any trekking trip is setting up camp at the end of the day. After a full day’s exertions, there is nothing better than to retire to the comfort of your tents and spend the night under the stars, by the warmth of a campfire.
Best time to visit: April and October
Please Note: Due to the strenuous nature of this trek, it is recommended for seasoned trekkers only. Children below 18 years of age are not permitted on this trek.
What is included in the tour
- Hotel/Guesthouse accommodation in Lachen
- Accommodation in tents (twin-share basis) as specified in itinerary
- Airport/station pick-up and drop
- All local transport in premium SUV
- All meals specified in itinerary
What is NOT included in the tour
- Any meal not specified in itinerary
- Air/train fare
- Travel insurance
- Personal snacks/beverages like alcohol
- Personal medication
- Take in the views of peaks like Kanchenjunga, Siniolchu, Simvo
- Enjoy overnight stays in tents at Tallem, Jakthang, Yabuk, Green Lake
- Trek through forests of rhododendron blooms
- Meditate in the relaxing solitude of the Himalayas at Green Lake camp
- Arrive at New Jalpaiguri Railway Station or Bag dogra Airport where our staff will receive you. From here, we drive for 6- 7 hours to reach Lachen, stopping for lunch on the way. Situated at an altitude of 2730 metres, Lachen is a small town in North Sikkim and will be the primary base for our trek. Lachen literally translates to ‘big pass’ and this is an apt name as Lachen is the gateway to some of the best known trekking trails in the region. The town is located just 129 kilometres from the capital city of Gangtok and forms a base to Gurudongmar Lake and Chopta Valley. This is a scenic halt for trekkers and it is where we spend out first night at a guesthouse. Make sure to get a good night’s sleep after dinner before we set off on our trek the next day.
- Have an early breakfast at the guest house and then set off for Zema. This is a 20 minute trek that takes us across multiple bridges and over boulders and rhododendron woods. Zema is the confluence of the Zemu Chu and Thangu Chu glaciers. In fact, Zemu Chu is the largest glacier in the Eastern Himalayas. We follow a trail along the left bank of Zemu to reach Tallem. Today we trek for 12 kilometres over a span of 5- 6 hours before reaching Tallem. At an altitude of 3240 metres, Tallem is situated at the confluence of Zemu Chu and Lhonak Chu. We pitch our tents in Tallem and then settle down for a well- deserved lunch. The rest of the day can be spent exploring the environs of Tallem. Have an early dinner at the campsite and retire to your tents for the night.
- Wake up bright and early for today’s trek! After breakfast at the camp, we set off for a relatively easy trail up to Shobuk. Today we will be trekking across some of the beautiful forests that characterise the landscape of Sikkim. Over twenty varieties of wild rhododendron blooms in every hue will greet you on your way. Revel in the riot of colours as you make a steep descent to reach Jakthang. We set up camp at a clearing in the forest and spend the night here.
- Today will be spent resting and acclimatising to the high altitude and decreasing temperatures. You can choose to stay at the campsite for an invigorating session of yoga or meditation to soothe body and mind. Otherwise, hike around Jakthang, exploring the forest before returning to the base camp.
- Refreshed and energised after a full day’s rest its back to the trekking trail today. We set off after breakfast at Jakthang camp and cross the rhododendron forests and several small streams to reach a bridge at Thombak Chu. Cross the bridge and then continue trekking downhill towards the bank of the Zemu Chu following a trail by the river. The final leg of the trek takes us over multiple ascents and descents and after an exhausting 8 kilometre trek, we reach our campsite at Yabuk. Being so close to the glacier, Yabuk is very cold and windy so make sure you layer up with sufficient warm clothing. Spend the day exploring the surroundings of Yabuk campsite and after an early dinner, retire to your tents for the night.
- Have a hearty breakfast at camp and gear up for a challenging day of trekking ahead. From Yabuk, our route takes us into glacier territory. Traverse moraines and boulders of Zemu glacier and trek uphill. This is a difficult trek but offers fantastic views of surrounding peaks like Mt. Simvo (6811m) and Mt. Siniolchu (6891m). On a clear day, you can also spot Mt. Kanchenjunga in the distance. After a further 6 kilometre walk we finally reach our rest camp at the mouth of Lhonak Valley. Settle down for a well deserved lunch and get a good rest. This is where we halt for the night and prepare for the final leg of the trek.
- Today we set off for the final passage to Green Lake. As before, the route takes us uphill over moraines and rocky terrain. As we make our way uphill, we can see the topography changing. With each step, the surrounding peaks like Mt. Simvo, Mt. Siniolchu, Nepal Peak, Twin Peaks etc. will get clearer and closer. Finally after a challenging 6 kilometre trek we reach the base camp at Green Lake. A hot lunch awaits us at the camp, to compensate for the exertions of the morning. You are free to spend the rest of the day as you like. Explore the camp surroundings or enjoy some quiet time by yourself.
- Today is officially a day for rest and acclimatisation. However, it also gives us a chance to explore the place that we’ve travelled so far to reach. Green Lake is one of the most beautiful places in Sikkim. The turquoise water surrounded by the snowy peaks of the Himalayas creates a mesmeric visual effect. The surroundings of Green Lake are equally enchanting with meadows dotted with primulas, poppies and rhododendrons. Make sure to carry your cameras and click away to your heart’s content. It’s a magical experience to spend the night in the heart of the Himalayas, humbled by their towering presence and feeling at one with nature.
- Have breakfast at Green Lake camp and then say goodbye to this Heaven on Earth as we trace our steps back to the rest camp at Lhonak Valley. This is a downhill trail taking us over the same route that we came by on our way to Green Lake. As before enjoy the views of the surrounding peaks as you make your way downhill over a rocky terrain. We trek for 6 kilometres today that takes 2- 3 hours and reach the Rest Camp where we spend the night.
- Have breakfast at the rest camp and then make your way to Yabuk. We follow a moderate pace taking time to appreciate the beauty of the surroundings. The 8- kilometre trek takes 3-4 hours to complete and we reach Yabuk in time for lunch. This is where we spend the night.
- Today we continue our descent to Jakthang. You can feel the change in temperature as you move down to lower altitudes. The trek covers an 8 kilometre route that we complete in 3- 4 hours to reach Jakthang. Spend the night at the Jakthang campsite.
- Enjoy an easy to moderate day of trekking today as we continue our descent to Tallem. We’re almost at the end of the trekking trip and today’s 12- kilometre stretch is completed in just 3- 4 hours before reaching Tallem. We will spend the night in tents in Tallem
- On the final day of trekking, we make our way from Tallem to Lachen. This is an easy downhill trek and we reach Lachen by lunchtime. Spend the rest of the day at leisure. You can choose to relax at the guesthouse or explore the town. A farewell dinner will be held in the evening where you can look back on the adventures of the last two weeks and also plan the next one!
- Have an early breakfast at the guesthouse before leaving for NJP/Bagdogra. The drive takes about 6- 7 hours and packed lunch is served on the way. Watch the topography changing as you leave the mountains behind and move towards the plains. Our car drops you off at NJP station/ Bagdogra Airport where your tour ends.