The Himalaya – the abode of trekkers
'Himalaya' actually translates as “abode of snow”, but these whitewashed, jagged peaks are the true abode of trekkers and justly envelop the winning route in our recent Battle of the Treks. No mountain range is as grand, high, raw, beautiful or influential on so many human lives.
They keep India warm and wet by preventing cold Siberian winds from heading south in winter and forcing the monsoon clouds to drop their burdens as they head north in summer. The great Gobi Desert almost certainly owes its entire existence to the mountains just as much as the waters of the holy Ganges do. It's this magnificent confluence of cultures, religions, rivers and mountains that make trekking in the Himalaya the undeniable top prize for walkers.
The Alps and the Andes are also incredible mountain ranges with culture and history intertwined with the towering spires of ice and rock, but in trekking ‘Top Trumps’ superlatives just aren't good enough, you need the extremes to win. The world's highest mountains: check; fascinating exotic culture: check; most deadly summit: check (Annapurna 1, 40% fatality rate!); many of the world's longest alpine glaciers: check; friendly people, mystery and legends, sublime remote paths with sumptuous views: check, check, check!
The Himalaya are where Exodus pioneered its trekking programme and where our long-standing local relationships are the foundations for the best walking holidays in the region. In our new world of ugly exchange rates (well, for Brits!) Himalaya trekking also provides great value. There can only be one winner in the Battle of the Treks and the true winner is the mighty Himalaya.
Never seen the Himalaya? Get yourself out there - the autumn is the perfect time to visit with the clearest, post-monsoon air and most pleasant temperatures. If feeling up for a moderate challenge, then take the walk to the legendary Everest Base Camp. For something easier and more relaxing, why not try a comfortable trek amongst the giants on Everest in Luxury?
Visited these mountains before? Then see a different part – Ladakh, Annapurnas, Bhutan and Zanskar are other must-see regions without the celebrity of the Khumbu. Or take on a real challenge and head for one of the great trekking peaks of Stok Kangri, Mera Peak, Island Peak or even the highest trek in the world - Lhakpa Ri.