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Gokyo Lakes Trek: A Comprehensive Guide to Nepal's Stunning High-Altitude Lakes

Gokyo Lakes Trek: A Comprehensive Guide to Nepal's Stunning High-Altitude Lakes

The Gokyo Lakes Trek takes you to the amazing turquoise and sacred lakes in the Khumbu region. Gokyo Lakes (4780 m) are a cluster of turquoise lakes in a mesmerizing landscape. The moderately difficult trek takes you to rugged, rocky trails, steep terrain, and high passes like Cho La Pass (5420 m).

How long does it take for Gorak Shep to reach Gokyo Lakes?

The first stop by the village on the Gokyo Lakes trek is Manjo, which is around 13 km from Lukla Airport. Similarly, the last village on your trek to Everest Base Camp is Gorak Shep. The Everest Base Camp in Nepal is South Base Camp in the South Col Route is in Nepal at an altitude of 5,364 meters.

It takes about a 15 km hike from Gorak Shep to reach Gokyo Lakes. From there, follow the Ngzompa glacier and trek to the Lobuche region. You get to see the world’s highest bakery, which is available in the Lobuche region (which is closed in the off-season).

From Lobuche, you now trek to Dzongla (4830 m) on the windy trail. We need to remember to leave early in the morning for a less windy trail and to leave as early as possible for the Gokyo region. You get to eat noodles, garlic soup, momo, and traditional Nepali Dal Bhat as well in High altitude region on your Gokyo Lake treks.

You won’t believe it, but the sunrise and sunset views in the region are beyond description. Ideally, these barren valleys are also suitable places for stargazing; you get extraordinary views of the Milky Way galaxy and North Stars, unlike before.

How to reach the Gokyo Lakes: Inside the Trek?

To reach the Gokyo Lakes, first cross the area of Lobuche and reach the village of Dzongla (4830 m). Following the windy section of the trail, you ascend to the rocky terrain to cross the Cho La Pass. After a detour from Everest Base Camp, you can continue to the Gokyo Lakes trek.

Heading south out of Lobuche, follow the EBC trail and you can blend this adventure with the Everest Three Pass Trek. Follow the ridge around the south side of Awi Peak (17,208 ft / 5,245 m).

Villages on the windy trail to the Gokyo Lakes trek are quite empty and even the lodges are closed for the season. Pre-inform them in advance for the opening session so that you can enjoy high-altitude delicacies like noodles, garlic soup, momos, and Dal Bhat.

On the challenging and rewarding climb, crossing the Cho La Glacier and Ngzompa Glacier, you get closer to the Gokyo Lakes at 4,780 m. The windy trail is best tackled in the early mornings so start an early morning trek to Gokyo Lakes and reach there as early as possible.

Crossing the Ngozumpa glacier, the longest rice river in Nepal, which is icy most of the time. It is a freshwater stream coming from the Renjo La Pass (5360m) Similarly, you cross Cho La Pass Glacier, using crampons on the icy trail. Reach the mesmerizing landscapes of Gokyo Lakes and you can also dine at the Thanka Inn Hotel in the region of Gokyo Lakes.

6 Sacred Lakes in Gokyo Lake Regions

Gokyo Lakes are sacred and the picturesque glacial lakes are believed to be holy. That is why swimming is not allowed in the lakes. There are 6 main freshwater lakes, and you have hotels and lodges near Gokyo 3rd Lake.

  • Longabanga Cho is the first Gokyo lake.
  • Gokyo Cho is one of the main lakes in the Gokyo region, also known as Dudh Pokhari.
  • Gokyo main lake is spread over an area of 106 acres (42.9 ha).
  • Ngozumba Cho is the smallest lake, spread over an area of 35.6 acres.
  • Gyazumpa Cho is spread over an area of 29 hectares (72 acres).
  • Thonak Cho is the largest and deepest lake, with an area of 35.07 meters (160.8 acres) and a depth of 62.4 meters.
  • Tanjung Cho is spread over 16.95 hectares (41.9 meters).

9 Essential Tips for Gokyo Lakes Trek

Compared to the Kalapatthar trek in the Everest region, the Gokyo Lakes trek is quite easy. With basic trekking experience, you can cross it. We also witness blue paint dabs on the rocks on the trek to Gokyo Lakes.

Having a local guide take you to the lakes is recommended, as the trekking route changes each year due to the closure of the narrow alleyways. This can be because of rock deposition.

  1. Don’t forget to pack crampons, because crossing an icy Cho La glacier without one is tough.
  2. Leave early for Dzongla to avoid strong winds.
  3. Accommodation options are limited in Gokyo so prebook in advance.
  4. Even having basic mountaineering skills with ice axes helps you a lot.
  5. Visit the Everest Research Center, aka Pyramid Hotel.
  6. Stay updated on weather forecasts to navigate safely.
  7. Respect local customs and don't throw your trash on the way.
  8. The trek to Gokyo Ri Peak is steep and takes about 45 minutes.
  9. Enjoy birdwatching of the Tibetan snow cock, Ruddy Shelducks, and other high-altitude birds.

Everest base camp and Gokyo Lakes trek

One can take a side trail to Gokyo Lakes on their way to the Everest base camp trek (5,364 m) on the Southern Col route. There are two base camps on Everest; the North Base Camp (5,150 m) is on the Tibetan side of Everest.

Trekkers around the world prefer to reach the Southern Everest Base Camp in Nepal with permits from the Nepal Mountaineering Association. Do you know that the Everest trek on the east route is the most difficult one?

Colorful prayer flags, Mani stones, and high suspension bridges—all these are quite common on the Everest Base camp and Gokyo Lake trek routes. On your trekking route before the village of Dole, you cross over Mong La Pass (3957 m or 12982 ft), which provides exceptional views of Mount Khumbila at a height of 5,761 m (18,901 ft) and Ama Dablam (6,812 m).

Pass through several yaks grazing pasture land with a steep ascent and gradual descent, head to Thagnak, and further stay at Thagnak. It's the last village before Cho La Pass, the one pass that connects the Everest Base Camp and the Gokyo Lakes Trek route.

You have the memorable crossing of the Cho Lo Pass and descend to Gokyo Lakes, and the amazing viewpoint of Gokyo Ri Peak, where the early colors of the sun rays and sunset hit differently, like Everest is blessing your soul for the holy glance.

Cho La Circuit Trek: Inside the Gokyo Lakes side trail

The Cho La Circuit Trek is an adventurous high-altitude trek chasing the stunning views of Mt. Everest, Lhotse, Cho Oyo, and Makalu. It has steep ascents, descents, and crossings of glaciers like Ngozumpa and Cho La Glacier, and this icy glacier is nearing the state of dying, so raising community efforts under this is crucial.

The Cho La Circuit trek is around a 17-day trek in the Khumbu region, where you pass across villages of Gokyo., Namche Bazaar, Dzongla, Lobuche, and Gorak Shep and have a rewarding experience around Cho La Pass.


The Gokyo Lakes Trek is popular in the Khumbu region of Nepal. The stunning turquoise lakes in Gokyo villages, the cluster of 6 lakes, showcases, glaciers, and snow-capped peaks, including Everest, Makalu, and Cho Oyu.

Within 11 to 14 days of the Gokyo Lakes Trek itinerary, you will be captivated by the amazing views of the traditional Sherpa villages. Icy Glacier, ancient monasteries, and above all, the amazing sunrise, sunset, and day view of Everest and the surrounding mountains. Choose to climb the Gokyo Ri peak and spend extra time exploring the Gokyo Valley.

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