Trekking Tips

Physical Fitness

Treks vary from short three-day walks across low altitudes to the three-week Snowman Trek that covers 356 kilometers and climbs three of the Kingdom’s highest passes. Not only the overall duration but also the daily walking distances vary substantially according to the different trek routes.

Guiding, Food and Camping

In Bhutan, all trekking supplies – camping equipment, kitchen implements, food – are all carried by pack animals. Porters are rather unusual in Bhutan with loads usually carted by horses or, in higher regions, yaks. All trekkers are accompanied by a guide, a cook and usually at least one horseman or yak herder. With the surest footing; they lead trekking groups across the passes. The horseman and cook will usually run ahead during a trekking day. They will have prepared a packed lunch for hikers and will go on to the night’s resting place to set up camp. They set up tents, cook dinner and ready the area for arriving trekkers. When trekkers reach the campsite they are greeted with a hot cup of tea and biscuits in the dining tent. After six hours on the mountains, no drink will ever taste sweeter. For dinner the cook will usually prepare a buffet of dishes that are as welcome as they are delicious.


Health & Safety

Trekkers are warned that altitude sickness can be a serious problem at the altitudes hiked to in Bhutan. If you feel sick, dizzy or have a worsening headache, stop and drink as much water as possible. If the symptoms persist, go back down the mountain. Bhutanese guides are trained to look out for altitude sickness and other ailments that can affect trekkers. They are expert walkers who have been trained as trekking guides and follow routes that have been walked for centuries. All trekkers are required to strictly follow trekking rules to protect the fragile environment at high altitudes.

Trekking Gear

Although trekking gear is available in Bhutan you are advised to bring your own gear.

What to Bring

Trekking or running shoes

Camp shoes or thongs

Socks (polypropylene)


Down or fibre-filled jacket

Jumper or piled jacket

Hiking shorts

Waterproof jackets, poncho or umbrella

Hiking pants

T-shirts or blouses


Sun hat


Other equipment

Self Inflating Sleeping Mattress (optional, “normal” mats provided by Bhutanese tour operators)

Sleeping bag

Water bottle

Torch, batteries and bulbs.

Photographic Equipment


Mountain trekking boots

Socks or wool to wear with boots

Socks, light cotton for under wool socks



Insulated pants

Nylon windbreaker

Nylon Wind pants

Long underwear

Woolen hat


Long gaiters


Toilet articles

Cigarette lighter

Small knife

Sun block / Sun block for lips



Laundry soap

Medical and first aid kit

Sewing kit


Walking sticks

While on trek your Bhutanese tour operator will be providing you the following items:

Two-person tent

Trekking mattresses

Eating utensils

Kitchen equipments

Other camping equipment such as dining tent, toilet tent

Trekking guide

Trained cook and other helpers