Trek Highlights

  • Trek through the Kali Gandaki Gorge (2,520 m/8,270 ft.) all the way across the Thorong La Pass (5,416m/17,769ft).
  • Trek around the world’s 10th tallest peak, Annapurna Circuit Trek offers you ample diversity.
  • Diverse flora, fauna, rivers, waterfalls, cultures, traditions and lifestyles.
  • The mountain peaks in the Annapurna Massif include Hiunchuli, Manaslu, Annapurna I,II and II, Machhapuchhre, Nilgiri, Lamjung Himal, Tukuche Peak
  • Opportunity to experience different trek through isolated/different routes amongst the local cultures.
  • Explore turquoise lake called Gangapurna Lake
  • Kathmandu Sightseeing tour

Trek Overview

The Annapurna Circuit is a trek within the Annapurna mountain range of central Nepal.

Annapurna Circuit trek is considered as one of the best long treks in the world. Annapurna Conservation Area Project (ACAP) completed alternative trekking route in 2006 and named them NATT (New Annapurna Trekking Trails) and finally back in 2012 NATT was renamed to Natural Annapurna Trekking trail. Nepal Sanctuary Treks use new NATT trail to trek to south of Annapurna and to avoid the road.

The scenery is outstanding with a wide variety of climate zones from tropics at 600m to arctic at 5416m at the Thorong La pass and cultural variety from Hindu villages at the low foothills to the Tibetan culture of Manang Valley and lower Mustang.

Annapurna Region offers a true cross-section of Nepal from lowland rice plantations, deep forest, snowcapped mountain range, with beautiful sunrise and sunset view to the arid terrain in the Himalayan rain shadow. Trekking with us will give you the opportunity to experience different trek through isolated/different routes amongst the local cultures.

Furthermore, Annapurna Circuit Trek also takes us to Manang, Jomsom and the Muktinath region which again gets us acquainted with the diverse Nepalese landscape and culture.

 

Annapurna Circuit Trek

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Note: Below trekking hours, altitudes and distances are approximate, and absolutely for the general idea only.

Itinerary

  1. Day 01: Arrive at Kathmandu airport (1,302m/4,270ft)

    You will be received and escorted to the hotel by our staff, refresh yourself and take some rest or explore the area around your hotel. Overnight at Hotel in Kathmandu.

  2. Day 02: Kathmandu valley sightseeing and Trek preparation

    Kathmandu is the cultural heart of Nepal and has been a famous destination for tourists ever since Nepal opened its borders to visitors. Today after breakfast we will explore Kathmandu valley, a guided tour will be conducted to major world heritage sites inside the valley. As Kathmandu valley is a beautiful combination of Hinduism and Buddhism we will visit historical sites like; Durbar Squares, Pashupatinath, Swayambhunath (monkey temple) and Buddhist shrine of Bouddhanath which is one of the largest stupa in the world. After the tour you will prepare yourself for the trek, will be briefed about the trek; buy all the trekking equipment required and overnight at hotel.

    Highlights:

    Visit World’s UNESCO heritage Sites

  3. Day 03: Kathmandu – Besi Sahar (760m/2,493ft) – Syange (1,100m/3,608 ft.)Drive 8-9 hrs.

    Early morning after breakfast, we will head to Besi Sahar on a private vehicle arranged by the company. A long scenic ride offer spectacular mountain views. Passing the village like Khudi, Bhulbhule, Ngadi takes you to Syange where we stay overnight in a lodge.

    Highlights:

    • Follow Marsyangdi River
    • Pass through villages, paddy fields, tropical forests and varied range of flora and fauna
    • Observe mixed settlement in Syange
    • Many touristic lodges are available
    • Beautiful huge waterfall at Syange
    • Pass through rice fields, rain forest and river.
    • Get an opportunities to capture amazing green landscapes, mountains and waterfalls raising above the powerful river Marsyangdi
  4. Day 04: Syange – Tal (1,675 m/ 5,495 feet), 6 hrs. trek

    The following morning we make our way towards Tal. Take a steady ascend along the motorway and after taking descend you will arrive at Jagat and trek towards Chamje where we will stop for lunch. Further take descend trail along the Marsyangdi River and cross the suspension bridge. As you ascend you can see the cliff onto other side of the trail. Take an additional steep climb up to top from tea house. The top ridge is the border line of Manang and Lamjung. We will enter the valley of Manang district. Then trek through easy trail all the way to Tal. Tal is a beautiful village, mainly made up of lodges and old houses. Behind the village is a huge waterfall which will offer nice photo opportunities.

    Highlights:

    • Observe Gurung  and Tibetan people and culture at Tal
    • Cross suspension bridge
    • Visit Monastery and waterfall

     

     

  5. Day 05: Tal- Danaque (2,210m/7,251ft.) 4-5 hours

    After breakfast, we walk an easy trail and cross the suspension bridge. Further take ascend and trek through motorway where you reach at Dharapani. Your TIMS permit will be checked by police at Dharapani Bazar. Then, pass Dharapani and take steady climb up to Danaque. Danaqyu is a long village stretched over more than 1km with several lodges.

    Highlights:

    • Walk through pine forests, local villages and apple orchard.
    • Observe Tibetan and Gurung culture 

     

  6. Day 06: Danaque – Chame (2,700m/8,858ft) 6-7 hrs trek

    After breakfast, we take ascend and follow the south bank of the river climbing to Syal Khola (the river of jackals) at 2210 meter, after which we will cross the river over a cement bridge . Further take steep ascend through forest of walnut trees and landslide areas. Then you reach at Temang village, where you can see the great views of Lamjung Himal (6,983m), Annapurna II and Annnapurna IV. The climate and vegetation will change once you arrive at Temang. Then follow motorway passing several local villages, pine forest and fields all the way to Chame. Chame is a district headquarter of Manang with a bank, police headquarters, district administration.

    Highlights:

    • Pass through walnut trees, beautiful villages, pine forests and fields
    • Majestic backdrops of Lamjung Himal (6,983m), Annapurna II and Annnapurna IV

     

  7. Day 07: Chame – Pisang (3,190m/10,465ft) 5-6hrs trek

     

    After breakfast, we leave Chame behind and trek towards Pisang. On the way you will see the first glimpse of Lamjung Himal. Further cross the Marsyandi River via suspension bridge and walk through planted fields to Teleku and Bratang. You can see a huge apple orchard in Bratang run by community. Here, you can refresh yourself by drinking organic apple juice. Further trek through level path crossing Marsyandi River. Our path steepens as we climb passing teahouses and reach at Dhikur Pokhari. We will stop for lunch and enjoy the close view of Pisang peak, Annapurna II, IV and several other unnamed peaks. After lunch, again walk on level path and cross another suspension bridge. Once we take a final ascend we reach our today’s destination, Upper Pisang.

    Highlights:

    • Visit monasteries nestled on top of the village
    • Observe Yak grazing in the field
    • Marvelous views of the mountains like Lamjung Himal, Pisang peak, Annapurna II, IV and several other unnamed peaks
    • Cross suspension bridge
    • You will be surrounded by pine trees and dense forests and pass through many apple farms

     

  8. Day 08: Pisang – Manang (3,500m/11,482ft) 6-7hrs trek

     

    Today, leaving Pisang we trek to major villages of Manang district, the environment will become colder and drier as we climb upwards. There are two ways to reach Manang; we will take the upper trail that offers us the best views of the mountains, if you wish to take the lower trail it will take (5hrs) to reach our destination.

    From Pisang we walk through levelled trail then steep climb up to Ghyaru where you will come across with beautiful chorten. Overlooking the valley with perfect vistas of Annapurna III, IV, Chulu Far east, Pisang peak, Gyaru is a typical village with most houses having flat roofs. Ghyaru is bounded by several fields of buckwheat and barley and gompas. Further walk a level path and from the top of the  ridge, you can see grand views of  Humde village with its short air-strip and the great peaks of Gangapurna, Annapurna II & III, Tilicho and on the right Chulu east, on the back Pisang peak. and mountaineering school. Walking further you will reach at Ngawal where we stop for lunch. After lunch we take a shorter descent to rejoin the main trail and continue to trek towards Braga where you can see traditionally built up Tibetans style of houses and if can be visited the monastery, it has an exceptional display of sculptures, beautiful masks and Thanka, and the sacred manuscripts. After an hour walk you will arrive at Manang for the overnight.

    Highlights:

    • We will have excellent views of most of the Annapurna range, Chulu Far east, Pisang peak
    • Visit monastery and observe traditional Tibetan style house
    • Observe Tibetan culture
    • Pass through chorten, several fields of buckwheat and barley
    • Birds-eye view of Humde village with short air-strip from the top of the ridge.
    • Rocky cliffs and not so much trees as you reach Manang.
    • You can observe birds like eagle and falcon on the way
  9. Day 09: Rest and acclimatization day in Manang

     

    Today is an important day for acclimatization as the next few days we will trek in higher altitudes and altitude sickness can be a problem. Day treks around Manang will be organized today, the best options for today’s trek is Gangapurna Lake, the turquoise glacial lake from the Gangapurna glacier. For acclimatization, we hike above the lake where there is a Chongkor viewpoint which offers spectacular mountains views and the majestic Gangapurna Lake itself. After hike, we will be back to lodge for lunch.

    Highlights:

    • Visit Gangapurna Lake, exceptionally beautiful blue-green lake fed by the glacier
    • Observe Yak, blue sheep along the way.
    • If you are lucky you might encounter with snow leopard.
    • Spectacular view of Annapurna II, Annapurna III (7,555 meters), Gangapurna (7,454 meters) to the South – Tilicho (7,132 meters) and the Grand Barrier to the West – Chulu West (6,583 meters) and Chulu East (6,059 meters) to the North.

     

  10. Day 10: Manang – Yak Kharka (4,090m/13,418ft) 3-4hrs

     

    After an early breakfast, we head towards Yak Kharka. The trail takes to a steady ascend to the Tenki Manang for closer vistas of the Annapurna, Gangapurna and Tilicho peak. The trail slowly winds up offering awe-inspiring vistas and through terrains with juniper bushes and trek further up to finally reach Yak Kharka. Since it is shorter trek today so that it helps everyone in acclimatization and reaching Yak Kharkha earlier will give us the opportunity to explore around the village. We can either walk up the valley and back to the lodge or climb the ridge behind the village. We will rest the night here.

    Highlights:

    • View of Annapurana III, Pisang ,Gangapurna 
    • Encounter with yaks and blue sheep along the way
    • Tibetan  settlement
  11. Day 11: Yak Kharka – Thorong Phedi (4,490m/14,730ft) 3-4hrs trek

    Today is another short trek day; the trek takes us to the foot of Thorang La Pass at Thorang Phedi. From Yak Kharka, you feel a steady rise in the trail. After an hour walk takes you to Ledar and continue to take easy climb along the east bank of the Jarang Khola to Thorung Phedi. Further, we follow a narrow trail across a high, unstable slope crossing landslide and stone fall area before moving to Thorong Phedi. It is advised to be very cautious while crossing these areas. Once you reach at Thorong Phedi, you can either hike up to Thorong  High camp for acclimatization or rest in Thorong Phedi.

    Highlights:

    • You can see the herd of blue sheep grazing around the lodge
    • Enjoy amazing view of mountains and landscapes along the trail
    • We pass through rocky cliffs and dry land
    • You can see Yaks, Eagles and horse along the way
  12. Day 12: Thorong Phedi – Thorong La (5,416 metres (17,769 ft)) – Muktinath (3,800m /12,467ft) 8-9hrs trek

    We will leave Phedi early in the morning for the challenging trek through Thorong La. Crossing the pass early would be a better idea as the weather can affect the trek during noon, it will take us 4 to 5 hours to reach the pass.

    At the Thorong La pass, with its traditional prayer flags and stone cairn you will have outstanding views. You can enjoy the view of the Annapurna, Gangapurna and Khatung Kang, a heavily glaciated peak. You will reach a tea shop from where we start to descend. After the trail becomes less steep we will enter grassy fields and cross pastures where you can see the view of Dhaulagiri range and several other mountains. Finally we arrive Muktinath where we will stay overnight.

    Highlights:

    • Cross Thorong La Pass (5,416m), the highest point of Annapurna Circuit Trek.
    • Capture the moment in your camera and explore the area.
    • Muktinath is a popular pilgrimage among Hindu and Buddhist devotees of Nepal and India. The temple attracts thousands of devotees annually.
    • Walk on your own pace viewing with sunrise and glimpse of the mountains.
    • Picturesque scenery and down to the Mustang part of mountains and the Kaligandaki valley far below to the West.
    • Photo opportunity from this vantage point

     

  13. Day 13: Muktinath – Jomsom (2,800m/9,186ft) 3-4hrs trek

    Muktinath is a holy place for both Hindus and Buddhists. Today we will have an opportunity to visit the sacred Hindu temple. Leaving Muktinath the trail will passes down Kagbeni and along with Kali Gandaki down to the town of Jomsom. Kali Gandaki is famous for ammonite fossils which symbolize and represent Lord Vishnu.We will reach Jomsom at noon having time left for us to explore Jomsom or rest as today is the last day of our trek. We will prepare ourselves to leave Jomsom for the next day and rest the night there. Jomsom is known as windy valley due to strong wind blown after 10 am. On the way to Jomsom you can see the majestic view of Nilgiri and Dhaulagiri

    Highlights:

    • Visit Muktinath , pilgrim site for 3000 years where you can get opportunity to observe small earth fissure water and natural gas pours out, the latter burning in a little flame and listen to the gargling soft sound of the water
    • Amazing walk along the Gandaki river where you can find ammonite
    • View of the Nilgiri Himal peak and Dhaulagiri
  14. Day 14: Fly to Pokhara and on to Kathmandu

    We will have an early breakfast and walk up to the airport nearby the hotel in Jomsom.  After a short flight we reach Kathmandu and will have free leisure time either to rest or explore Kathmandu Valley, you will stay the night in Kathmandu.

    Highlights:

    • Scenic flight from Jomsom to Pokhara
  15. Day 15: Back home

    You will be assisted by our staff in a vehicle and transferred to TIA airport in Kathmandu from where you will take your flight back home.

     

Fast Facts

  • Max altitude :  (5,400m/17,716ft)
  • Suitably designed itinerary for acclimatization
  • Accommodation in the best-selected lodges and tea houses along the trail and in Kathmandu
  • Crossing Thorong La, one of the most challenging pass
  • Views of Annapurna Range, Machhapuchhre, Dhaulagiri, Manaslu, Gangapurna and Tilicho Lake
  • Traditional villages inhabited by Gurung, Thakali, Tamang etc
  • Fauna found in the region- pika, blue sheep and Himalayan Tahr. 
  • One of the most popular trekking route of Nepal

Most Common FAQs

  1. 1 . Why choose Annapurna Circuit trek ?

    The Annapurna Circuit is a trek within the Annapurna mountain range of central Nepal. The trek is considered one of the best treks in the world as because of the scenery the trek offers. You will trek through a wide variety of climate zones and cross Thronog La pass, experience Tibetan culture of Manang and lower Mustang. The trek offers much more than just trekking.

  2. 2 . How fit do I need to be for this trek?

    You will be walking for minimum of 5 – 7hrs a day, you don’t have to really fit but the minimum level of fitness is required as the trek is not an easy one. You do have to be healthy and mentally prepared for trekking in this region although it doesn’t require mountaineering skills.

  3. 3 . What is the best time of the year for this trek?

    The trek is possible throughout the year. However, autumn and spring are the best seasons; choose to trek in autumn (Sep-Nov) as spring is busy with expedition stuff.

  4. 4 . Why should I trek with Nepal Sanctuary Treks (NST)?

    We (NST) believe in socially and environmentally responsible, sustainable tourism. Our personalized services are guided by these principles and our 27 yrs of experience in the field of trekking is invaluable in giving our clients quality service. Our itineraries are suitably designed for acclimatization and we use the best selected lodges through the trail and in Kathmandu.

  5. 5 . Can children trek in this region or are there any age restrictions?

    Yes, children can trek as there is no age restrictions. Nepal Sanctuary Trek can design suitable trekking itinerary for all age group above 8yrs. However, for children fewer than 8 can have high time trekking for longer period of time and altitude sickness can be a problem.

  6. 6 . What to take for the trek (clothes, personal kits)?

    To make it easier for you Nepal Sanctuary Treks have prepared you a kit check list, you can have a look at it below:

  7. 7 . Do I need travel insurance covered while trekking/traveling in Nepal?

    Insurance is a compulsion as anything can happen in the trek; for emergency rescue, personal liabilities, cancellation, loss of luggage and other reasons if necessary.

  8. 8 . How much weight do I have to carry or how much will my porter carry?

    You can bring as much as clothes you want but extra luggage is not required for the trek, you can leave your extra luggage in Kathmandu or Pokhara’s hotel. For the trek you can carry enough clothes you require in your backpack or carry only the camera, water bottle few clothes etc in your backpack. The potter can carry your extra duffle bag clothes which can weigh up to 15 to 30kg and a camping porter carries up to 30kg. However the local domestic flights allows maximum of 18kg per person.

  9. 9 . What medical facilities are there on Annapurna Circuit trek?

    In case of emergency you need to get evacuated by helicopter to Kathmandu, you need to take proper care of your health. Anyways, you will find small clinics along the trek, one at Manang and other at Jomsom (these clinics only check minor sickness). However, you need to bring your medicine (if any) and a first aid box will be provided by Nepal Sanctuary Treks, also your guide will be trained for first aid in case of emergency.
    For further enquiries you can contact Nepal Sanctuary Treks at:

Reviews

We returned to the UK all intact and have returned to work but still remember what a fabulous trek we had to ABC.  A big thank you to you and to Gopal for looking after us so well.  It was truly a trip of a lifetime and made all the better by having such competent, professional and personable guides.

I am already thinking about what is next and I would like to consider something a bit more adventurous but need your advice.  I have always rock climbed and managed a little ice climbing about 30 years ago!!  What sort of expedition would you recommend that might include a low-level peak or something a bit more technical?

Thank you again for all your help and support.

100
Dominic Wish, United Kingdom

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