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Top 10 Tallest Mountains In The World

When we say the top 10 tallest mountains in the world, which mountains come to mind? We have a complete list of ten mountains above 8000 meters, so read until the end!

Top 10 Tallest Mountains In The World

Introduction to the Top 10 Tallest Mountains In The World

The top 10 tallest mountains in the world start with Mount Everest, the highest mountain in the world, with a towering height of 8489 meters. Most people worldwide know this fact. They may be familiar with other popular mountains like Mount Kilimanjaro, Mount Fuji, Mount Blanc, etc.

Eight of the tallest mountains are in Nepal, a small, landlocked country. A few of these mountains are close to Everest in the Himalayan mountain range. These tall mountains have been alluring to mountaineers for centuries. Despite the hazards and threats, mountaineers have continued to climb them. 

So, which is the magnificent top 10 tallest mountains in the world? Well, let us learn about the world’s highest mountains together! 

Top 10 Tallest Mountains

Mount Everest

  • Height: 8,489 meters/ 29,032 feet
  • Country: Nepal

Mount Everest, the highest mountain in the world, lies in Nepal’s Mahalangur Himalayan sub-range. In the local Nepali language, the locals refer to the mountain as Sagarmatha, which translates to “the head in the great blue sky.” Meanwhile, its Tibetan name is Qomalangma, meaning “holy mother.” The border between Nepal and Tibet runs between the summit.

Top 10 Tallest Mountains In The World

Sherpas, the locals of the Himalayan region, consider Everest a sacred peak blessed with spiritual energy. They are world-renowned mountain guides who have been indispensable logistical support in mountain expeditions.  

Tenzing Norgay Sherpa and Edmund Hillary in 1953 were the first to ascend Everest successfully. They were part of John Hunt’s ninth British expedition. The early known attempt to climb was the 1921 British Reconnaissance Expedition. Similarly, another notable ascent took place in 1978. Reinhold Messner and Peter Habeler were the first to ascend to the top without supplemental oxygen. 

Climbing Everest, the tallest mountain on earth, is something only some skilled mountaineers can do. It requires a lot of experience, good health, skills, equipment, and logistic support. Everest’s deadly hazards and extreme weather conditions make it fatal. As a result, the Everest area above 8000 meters is infamous as the “Death Zone.”

In recent years, there have been concerns about pollution and waste management at Everest. In 2019, the Khumbu Pasang Lhamu Rural Municipality launched a campaign to clean 10,000 kg of garbage from Everest.

K2

  • Height: 8,611 meters/ 28,251 feet
  • Country: Pakistan 

K2 is the world’s second-highest peak and one of the deadliest. It has several names, the most popular one being Savage Mountain. George Bell, a member of the 1953 American expedition, gave the mountain this nickname. The Great Trigonometrical Survey of British India gave the mountain the name K2.

K2 Top 10 Tallest Mountains In The World

A British team surveyed K2 for the first time in 1856. Meanwhile, the first attempt to climb the mountain was in 1902 via the northeast ridge. Those who attempted the climb were Oscar Eckenstein, Aleister Crowley, Jules Jacot-Gullarmord, Heinrich Pfannl, Victor Wessley, and Guy Knowles.  

It was only in 1954 that Italian climbers Lino Lacedelli and Achille Compagnoni became the first to reach the top of K2 successfully. They were part of an Italian expedition team led by Ardito Desio. The first female to reach the summit was Polish mountaineer Wanda Rutkiewicz in 1986. As of February 2021, only 377 climbers had successfully climbed the K2. 

The mountain is notorious for being difficult and dangerous. It is even more brutal than climbing Everest. A survey states that one of every four climbers who reach the top dies. It is part of the Karakoram range of the Himalayas

Conservation efforts have been made to preserve K2’s natural beauty. These efforts include maintaining its raw nature, managing waste, and promoting responsible climbing. 

Kanchenjunga

  • Height: 8,586 meters/ 28,169 feet
  • Country: Nepal

Kanchenjunga translates into five treasures of snow and is the third-highest mountain in the world. This is because the Mountain consists of five peaks representing five treasures: gold, silver, gems, grain, and holy books of God. Hence, locals in Tibet, Nepal, and India consider the mountain a sacred peak.

Top 10 Tallest Mountains In The World

The earliest exploration of Kanchenjunga took place between April 1848 and February 1849. Joseph Dalton Hooker explores the northern and eastern part of the mountain to study the Himalayan flora. Until 1852, mountaineers believed Kanchenjunga was the highest mountain in the world. In 1856, the mountain received the title of the third-highest mountain in the world. 

Joe Brown and George Band were the first to ascend Mount Kanchenjunga successfully in 1955. They were part of the 1955 British Kangchenjunga expedition. Another notable ascent was in 1979. Dough Scott, Peter Boardman, and Joe Tasker climbed the peak for the first time without oxygen.  

Climbing Kanchenjunga is difficult and dangerous due to its remote location and challenging terrain. The mountain has steep terrain and glaciers, which require technical skills. The freezing temperature and harsh weather conditions further add to the challenges. 

The Kanchenjunga Conservation Area project has been crucial in conserving the mountain region. It aims to protect its rich biodiversity and cultural diversity and promote eco-friendly trekking and climbing expeditions. 

Lhotse

  • Height: 8,516 meters/ 27,940 feet
  • Country: Nepal

Mount Lhotse is the fourth-highest mountain. It connects to Everest through the South Col, and the route is the same as Mount Everest via Everest Base Camp until Camp 3. Everest lies to the north of Mount Lhotse, while Nuptse lies to the west.

Lhotse Top 10 Tallest Mountains In The World

The mountain sits at the highest point of the horseshoe-shaped range, which includes Everest. The term Lhotse translates to “South Peak” in Tibetan. The first attempt to climb the mountain was in 1955, during an International Himalayan Expedition by Norman Dyhrenfurth. 

A year later, in 1956, Fritz Luchsinger and Ernst Reiss successfully climbed Mount Lhotse as part of the Swiss Mount Everest/ Lhotse Expedition. Later, in 1979, Andrzej Czok and Jerzy Kukuczka ascended the mountain without supplemental oxygen. Czech mountaineer Sona Vomackova became the first woman to summit the mountain. 

The climb from the standard Reiss Couloir route to the Lhotse summit is moderately challenging. However, the climb from the South Face is among the most difficult and dangerous. It has incredibly steep sections, which require extensive technical climbing skills. The North East Face of the mountain remains unclimbed.

The Nepal Mountaineering Association (NMA) has tried to conserve and protect the essence of Mount Lhotse. They aim to preserve the region’s biodiversity, manage waste, and promote eco-tourism. 

Makalu

  • Height: 8,481 meters/ 27,825 feet
  • Country: Nepal

Mount Makalu is the fifth-highest mountain in the world. It lies in the Mahalangur Himalayas, southeast of Mount Everest. It is a solitary peak that has the shape of a four-sided pyramid. It is a solitary peak that has the shape of a four-sided pyramid. The mountain has two subsidiary peaks: Kangchungtse and Chomo Lonzo.

Makalu Top 10 Tallest Mountains In The World

An American team led by Riley Keegan made the first attempt to reach the mountaintop in the spring of 1954. They were part of the California Himalayan Expedition to Makalu. Later, in the fall of the same year, a French reconnaissance expedition team made their first ascent to Kangchungtse.

Lionel Terray and Jean Couszy were the first mountaineers to ascend to the main summit. They were part of the French expedition team led by Jean Franco. The next day, Jean Franco, Guido Magnone, and Gyalzen Norbu Sherpa summitted the mountain. American climber Kitty Calhoun became the first woman to reach the top of Makalu in 1990. 

Ascending Mount Makalu is one of the most technically demanding climbs in the world. It requires extensive technical and mountaineering skills. The route to the summit has steep rock walls, icy slopes, crevasses, and harsh climatic conditions. It pushes the limits of even seasoned mountaineers.  

In 1992, authorities established the Makalu Barun Conservation Area to conserve the biodiversity around the region. There have been efforts to minimize its impact and promote responsible tourism practices. 

Cho Oyu

  • Height: 8,201 meters/ 26,906 feet
  • Country: Nepal 

The Turquoise Goddess is the sixth-highest mountain in the world. Mount Cho Oyu lies in the Mahalangur Himalaya range, 20 km west of Mount Everest. A few kilometers west of the mountain lies the Nangpa La Pass. The pass is the main trading route between Tibet and the Khumbu region.

Cho Oyu Top 10 Tallest Mountains In The World

In 1952, the Joint Himalayan Committee of Great Britain led the first expedition to Cho Oyu, which was a preparation for an attempt on Mount Everest. Eric Shipton led the expedition, which included Edmund Hillary, Tom Bourdillon, and George Lowe.

In 1954, Herbert Tichy, Joseph Jochler, and Pasang Dawa Lama of an Austrian expedition successfully submitted Cho Oyu. Vera Komarkova and Dina Sterbova were the first women to reach the summit in 1984. 

Cho Oyu is among the easiest 8,000-meter mountains to climb. There are several routes to the top, and it is comparatively more accessible than other mountains. However, it is still a challenging and dangerous climb. 

The increasing awareness of environmental impact has raised concerns about mountaineering. The government and local communities have promoted sustainable tourism, minimized waste, and preserved the region’s biodiversity. 

Dhaulagiri  

  • Height: 8,167 meters/ 26,795 feet 
  • Country: Nepal

Mount Dhaulagiri is an isolated mountain that lies northwest of Mount Annapurna. It lies on the western side of Kali Gandaki, the deepest gorge in the world. In Sanskriti, Dhaulagiri translates to Dhavali giri, meaning white mountain.

Dhaulagiri Top 10 Tallest Mountains In The World

The stunning seventh-highest mountain peak is famous for its massive glaciers and deep valleys. A French expedition team led by Maurice Herzog first attempted to climb Dhaulagiri in 1950. From 1953 to 1958, five expeditions attempted to climb the mountain’s north face. 

It was only in 1960 that a Swiss-Austrian-Nepali expedition team led by Max Eiselin successfully reached the top of Dhaulagiri. Kurt Diemberger, Peter Diener, Ernst Forrer, Albin Schelbert, Nawang Dorje Sherpa, and Nyima Dorje Sherpa ascended the mountain. 

Dhaulagiri is among the most challenging mountains. Its steep slopes and high avalanche risk make it deadly. Due to its technical difficulty and danger, it is one of the less famous mountaineering peaks. 

Although there are fewer mountaineers, there have been efforts to conserve the environment and manage waste. The local authorities and communities have actively participated in such campaigns. 

Manaslu

  • Height: 8,163 meters/ 26,763 feet
  • Country: Nepal

Mount Manaslu is the eighth-highest mountain in the world. It lies in the Mansiri Himal range in west-central Nepal, 64 km east of Mount Annapurna. It is the highest peak in the Gorkha District. 

Manaslu translates to “mountain of spirit.” The Tibetan name for the mountain is “Kutan I,” where “tang” refers to a flat place. H.W. Tilman’s European expedition team first visited the region in 1950. However, they did not attempt the mountain.

manaslu circuit trek birendra lake

Between 1950 and 1955, four Japanese expeditions attempted to climb Manaslu from the east and north faces. In 1956, Toshio Imanishi and Gyaltsen Norbu successfully ascended to the mountaintop. They were part of the Aritsune Maki Japanese expedition team led by Maki Yuko. 

The mountain is approachable from all directions. However, it is the fourth most dangerous 8000-meter mountain. Due to harsh weather, heavy snowfall, and steep landscapes, avalanches are highly likely. As of May 2008, there have been 297 ascents and 53 fatalities.  

The Nepal government and local authorities established the Manaslu Conservation Area Project in 1997 to preserve the region’s nature and heritage. It has been crucial in maintaining and managing sustainability around Manaslu.   

Nanga Parbat

  • Height: 8,126 meters/ 26,660 feet
  • Country: Pakistan

The Nanga Parbat is the westernmost peak of the Himalayas, lying in Pakistan-administered Kashmir. The local name for the mountain is Diamer, i.e., the king of the mountains.

Nanga Parbat Top 10 Tallest Mountains In The World

Nanga Parbat translates to “Naked Mountain.” It is the second highest prominence (height of the summit to the lowest contour line) after Mount Everest. The expedition team led by Albert F. Mummery made the first attempt at the mountain in 1895. 

However, the successful ascent took place in 1953 via East Ridge. Austrian climber Hermann Buhl, part of the German-Austrian Nanga Parbat expedition, was the first to reach the mountain’s summit. In 1984, Lilliane Barrad from France became the first woman to reach the summit. 

The mountain’s nickname, Killer Mountain, comes from the high fatality rate during the climb. It is one of the most challenging mountains in the world. Its remote location, rough climbing routes, and the high risk of avalanches and unstable glaciers make it a deadly mountain. 

The peak lies within Nanga Parbat National Park, which conserves and protects the region’s flora and fauna. The park has also been crucial for boosting sustainable tourism and employment opportunities for locals. 

Annapurna

  • Height: 8,091 meters/ 26,545 feet
  • Country: Nepal

Mount Annapurna lies in north-central Nepal. The mountain stands at a height of 8091 meters above sea level. It is among the most dangerous and toughest mountains in the world. 

The mountain’s name comes from the Hindu deity of food and nourishment, Goddess Annapurna. In Sanskriti, the name translates into “everlasting food.” The name fits the mountain perfectly, as many streams from Mount Annapurna provide water for agriculture in lower regions.

annapurna base camp trek in september

Mount Annapurna was the first 8000-meter mountain that climbers successfully ascended. Maurice Herzog and Louis Lachenal achieved this feat in 1950. Herzog led the French Annapurna expedition. Swiss climber Ueli Steck’s 2013 ascent has become famous as “one of the most impressive Himalayan climbs in history.”

However, Annapurna has one of the highest fatality rates. It has an extremely steep landscape, unpredictable weather, and is prone to avalanches. From 2012 to 2022, the fatality rate has decreased from 32% to 20%. 

The National Trust for Nature Conservation established the Annapurna Conservation Area Project in 1986. It covers the mountain and its surrounding areas. The project conserves the region’s biodiversity and heritage. It has also been crucial in waste management and promoting sustainable tourism in the region. 

Conclusion

So these are the top 10 tallest mountains in the world. Conquering them is a feat only few can achieve. These famous mountains are the ultimate test for mountaineers and expeditions worldwide. Standing on their summit requires strength, skills, determination, resilience, and a little luck. Each mountain has its uniqueness, challenges, and dangers, which draw mountaineers to its summits. 

We hope you find this article on the top 10 tallest mountains in the world informative. However, many will be unable to list all the top 10 highest mountains in the world.  If you want to trek and tour Nepal, visit our website at Hillary Step Treks!

Hillary Treks

My name is Hillary. Since completing the Government Guide Training from Nepal's Ministry of Tourism and Civil Aviation (KEEP and HRA), I have been a specialist in mountain trekking and peak climbing. With specific expertise in the Nepal, Tibet, and Bhutan regions, I have now been a trekking guide and tour operator in Nepal, and across the Himalayas, since 2012.

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