Annapurna Circuit Trekking is by far the best trekking route in the north-western Himalayans of Nepal. Annapurna region of north-western Nepal is the most versatile trekking region in Nepal, and popularity-wise second only to the Everest region. The region is often described as the land of contrasts as it includes the country’s windiest, driest, and wettest places. The circuit trek route was open to trekkers only in 1977 AD, hence its beauty and wilderness is still preserved and intact in the purest form. The trekking experience will feel like a journey into the past, as the time has stood still for centuries in the remote Himalayan regions of Nepal.
The three weeks long trek begins with a scenic drive to from Kathmandu to Pokhara.Pokhara is a famous tourist destination in its own right. As we commence our trek from Dharapani, we will pass through several beautiful villages in high hills that have successfully retained their culture and heritage amidst fleeting modernity. Throughout the trek, we will have splendid views of magnificent Himalayan ranges like Mt. Annapurna, Mt. Dhaulagiri, and Mt. Nilgiri. We will continue our trek northward towards the arid Tibetan plateau which is guarded by tall silver peaks. One of the main highlights of the entire trek is the crossing of Thorong La Pass at an elevation of 5,416m. From the top of the pass, we can have great views of the entire Annapurna range along with other beautiful peaks like Dhaulagiri, Gangapurna, Yak Gawa, and Thorungstse – which will make a memorable moment.
In addition to relishing in the magical mountains, the Annapurna Circuit Trek also offers the unique chance to visit the most famous alpine regions of Nepal – Mustang and Manang.While in the beautiful Manang district, we will be able to visit several pristine ice lakes including the Tilicho Lake at 4,919m which is also known as the lake at the highest elevation. Another highlight is the Mustang district – the land beyond the Himalayans. The most trekked region in Nepal – and rightly so –the region strikes a perfect blend of natural beauty and spirituality. Here, we will visit the Muktinath Temple, situated in the driest terrains in the lap of Mt. Dhaulagiri and above Kali Gandaki Gorge, deepest in the world.
After commencing the trek from Dharapani, we will trek through Gurung settlements of Dharapani, Chame, and Pisang to reach Manang. After exploration of Manang and proper acclimatization, we will cross the enthralling Thorong-La Pass to reach Mustang district. Once again after Mustang’s exploration, we will trek dwon to Tirkhedhunga through Marpha, Lete, Tatopani, and Ghorepani. The trek ends at Ghorepani from where we will return back to Kathmandu via Pokhara. Since it is a high-altitude trek, trekkers need to be in good physical health, and preferably have previous trekking experiences. Upon returning to Kathmandu, we have a sightseeing day tour planned for you. We will visit some of the most exquisite and significant religious monuments of the eastern civilization such as PashupatiNath, SwayambhuNath, Durbar Squares and so on.
Day 01: Arrive in Kathmandu received by Team Himalaya staff.
On arrival meet our TH staff for courtesy transfer to respective hotels in the heart of Kathmandu at Thamel area, an interesting place for shopping and having meals in one of the many world class restaurants, pubs and bakery.
Our guide will inform on details regarding the trek to Around Annapurna Circuit Trek.
Day 02: Drive to Jagat 1,290 m via Beshsisar 800 m – 08 hrs.
A scenic long drive of 8 hours to Jagat village, which is quite interesting on the Nepal’s main highway following the Trisuli river for a while and then heading west with views of Ganesh, Langtang Himal and Annapurna, Manaslu range of peaks. On reaching at Dumre in the middle of Kathmandu / Pokhara highway, our route diverts towards Jagat passing large town of Beshisar and then on the dirt jeep road to Jagat village located in the mid hills. On arrival at Jagat village transfer into nice and simple lodge for overnight stop in this interesting farm village.
Day 03: Trek to Dharapani 1,920 m – 05 hours.
From Jagat village starting the first day walk on the gradual winding trail to Chamje, near raging Marsyangdi River and then crossing towards east bank into woodland, with views of Annapurna and Manaslu Mountain range pf peaks, then following a wide path all the way to Tal Besi a nice village located on Marsyangdi valley, after a lunch stop another few hours walk reaches Dharapani village for overnight stop, situated on the junction of this Annapurna circuit and around Manaslu trek.
Day 04: Trek to Chame 2,670 m – 05 hours.
After a nice night at Dharapani, morning walk along a wide trail into tranquil rhododendron and pine forest and villages of Bagachap and Danque, then to Timang village with grand view of Mt. Manaslu 8,163m / 26,781ft, after Timang village another hour walk leads to the village of Koto and then to Chame for the overnight stop, Chame a large major town of Manang area.
Day 05: Trek to Pisang 3, 230 m – 05 hrs.
From Chame onwards walk leads into cool and refreshing mountain air, as the morning walk leads through charming forest of rhododendron and pine tree following Marshyangdi River upstream with short ups and downs path to Bhratang village, from here walk climbs a winding uphill into fine woodlands to reach at Dhukure Pokhari for lunch stop, this place with few lodges overlooking views of Chulu’s and peak of Pisang including Pisang village below the Marsyangdi River valley, after a nice stop descend for two hours to Pisang village for overnight stop from here on with more Tibetan influence in culture, religion and way of daily traditional life.
Day 06: Trek to Manang Village 3,450 m – 05 hrs.
Pisang a mystical windswept village with awesome views of mountains arid landscapes, from here onwards gain in altitude, as the morning walk leads through a pristine woodland with an hour climb to a ridge with fantastic views of Hongde village and its small airstrip beneath the mountains of Annapurna II and III, Gangapurna Chulu’s and Pisang peak, with a nice descent towards flat Marsyangdi River valley at Hongde village, from here slowly the tree lines disappears for barren, arid with cold and dry climate.
From here a picturesque walk leading at Braga village just before Manang, here a worth a visit in its old monastery with an old Buddhist relics, ancient wall painting and frescos, offering overwhelming views of Annapurna’s Himalaya, and then an hour walk reaches at Manang village and check into a nice cizy lodge with magnificent views of snow capped peaks that surround this village and the Manang valley.
Day 07: Rest day at Manang for local hikes and acclimatization.
An important to have rest day for acclimatization before heading high Thorang -la, at Manang with various option for short hike, this large Tibetan like village located on a wide windswept valley at the bank of Marsyangdi River below the massif Annapurna and Gangapurna mountain range, a nice walk up for views of Gangapurna Glacier and Manang emerald glacial Lake one of the source of Marsyangdi River.
Day 08: Trek to Yak Kharka 4,110 m – 04 hours.
After a wonderful rest at Manang, morning journey leads towards Ghunsang village on the winding uphill trail to Yak Kharka, an impressive walk on this high altitude with fabulous views of snow capped mountains, then reaching Yak Kharka a small place with 3-4 lodges, offering incredible views of Gangapurna, Annapurna III and Chulu Peaks.
Day 09: Trek to Thorong High Camp 4,600 m – 04 hrs.
From Yak Kharka getting into much higher terrain towards Thorang-la, leading to cross a bridge with a climb along Jarjung river bank, on the narrow trail to reach at Thorung Phedi, from here an hour steep climb to the overnight stop at Thorang High Camp, to make it shorter for next day traverse over Thorang-la pass on time in the morning.
Day 10: Cross Thorong-La 5,416 m to Muktinath 3,800 m – 07 hrs.
Today, main highlight of this adventure, with an early breakfast setting off with a long undulating climb to the top of Thorang-la at 5,416 m / 17,700 ft, the highest of this journey. On reaching the top after a vigorous climb due to high altitude and thin air, greeted with awesome views of surrounding mountains from Mt. Dhaulagiri, Tukuche, Mustang Himal to Annapurna II, III and Gangapurna mountain range, after catching mind blowing views descend to Muktinath at 3,800 meters. On reaching Muktinath for overnight stop, on this holy place of Hindus and Buddhists the word Muktinath literally means ‘the place for Nirvana or Liberation’.
Day 11: Trek to Marpha 2, 670 via Jomsom 2, 715 m – 06 hours.
Muktinath a marvelous place with many good lodges, where pilgrims from India and Nepal visits once a year on this holy spot of Muktinath with 108 water spouts, believed as the source of Kali-Gandaki River, from here a long descnt to Kali-gandkai valley close to Kagbeni village, and then on the flat windy valley for some time to reach Jomsom town, main town and headquarter of Mustang region with an airstrip which flies daily to Pokhara and Kathmandu only in morning time, as afternoon can be very windy on this windswept terrain. After a brief stop another 2 hours of nice walk reaches Marpha one of charming village of this region, which is a little gem, with whitewashed houses, paved streets and many well kept lodges.
Marpha famous for apples and its products like cider, brandy and juice.
Day 12: Trek to Lete 2,480m – 06 hrs.
After an enjoyable time in Marpha, morning walk follows Kaligandaki river downstream reaching at Tukuche village, located beneath Tukuche peak and Dhaulagiri massif mountain, with fantastic views of Nilgiri’s peak and tumbling icefalls of Dhaualgiri’s East Face, after an hour walk from Tukuche to reach Larjung village, then crossing wide river bed, getting back to forested area lined with pines, oaks and rhododendron trees, the path leads away from the river for a while then back to river bed before Kalapani village, Kalapani, another nice village with excellent surrounding and view of Mt. Annapurna I, Nilgiri’s and Dhaulagiri above the beautiful pine tree lines. A short pleasant walk from here reaches at Lete village for overnight stop.
Day 13: Trek to Tatopani 1,190m – 06 hrs.
Trek from Kalapani and Lete onwards leads to a dramatic change in vegetation, from dry and arid country to warmer paddy terraces that leads in between two giant mountains Dhaulagiri and Annapurna forming world deepest of gorge Kaligandaki river valley. First two hours walk passes Ghasa villages through cool forest leading across many settlements, lodges and tea houses, the architectural style on houses changes with much ornately carved wood work. This pleasant walk continues towards terraced paddy fields and in warm sub-tropical climate all the way to Tatopani passing beautiful waterfalls of Rupsi on route.
Tatopani (Hot Spring) village the valley is quite constricted and it is quite warm with sub-tropic climate and vegetation, Tatopani is another nice village with large hot spring pools just by the bank of the River Kaligandaki.
Day 14: Trek to Ghorepani 2,750 m – 06 hrs.
After an enjoyable time in Tatopani, morning walk continues on the winding trail for an hour, to cross a bridge over Kaligandaki river, and then our route diverts heading to a steep terraced hillside, dotted with farms and villages, all the way through dense alpine forest reaching at Chitre, from here an hour climb to overnight stop at Ghorepani- Deurali village with fabulous views of world’s 07th highest Mt. Dhaulagiri towards North West, including Annapurna South and Vara-Shikar (Annapurna Fang), Ghorepani located on old Trans-Himalayan Salt Trade Route which extends all the way to Upper Mustang and beyond Tibet, this village inhabited with Pun Magar tribe and Ghorepani is famous for Pun Hill view point, offering super panorama of world’s three highest mountains with striking sunrise and sunset.
Day 15: Trek to Tirkhedhunga 1,500m -05 hours walk.
Early morning before sunrise an hour walk up to Pun-Hill at 3,190 meters, this wonderful hill top, with fantastic view of sunrise over mountain range from Mt. Dhaulagiri, Mt. Manaslu to Annapurna and as far to Ganesh Himal in the far eastern horizon including majestic Mt. Machhapuchhre “The Fish Tail” one of the most respected and unclimbed peak, after an enjoyable and impressive panorama walk back to Ghorepani through enchanting rhododendron forest, and then walk continues with a long descent to Ulleri on the stone paved steps all the way to the suspension bridge at Tirkhedhunga for overnight stop.
Day 16: Trek to Nayapul 1,100m and drive to Pokhara 860m.
Today the final trekking to end trek at Nayapul with a drive to Pokhara, morning walk leads downhill on gradual path most of the way passing many farm villages with beautiful views waterfalls, then reaching a nice village of Bhirethati next to Modi river with views of Mt. Machhapuchhre (Fish Tail), from here half hour walk reaches Nayapul completing walk of this great adventure, and then two hours interesting and scenic drive to the famous tourist spot in Pokhara for overnight stop near beautiful Lake Phewa.
Day 17: Drive back to Kathmandu – 06 hrs.
Morning a scenic drive to Kathmandu, after a wonderful memorable trip in the high mountains of Annapurna area, then on reaching Kathmandu transfer to respective hotels with afternoon free at leisure.
Day 18: In Kathmandu full day sightseeing tour.
Morning after breakfast at given time our city and cultural guide will guide you in and around Kathmandu at places of interest and importance, as Kathmandu Valley is full of World Heritage Sites the holy Pashupatinath temple, Bouddhanath (Little Tibet), Swayambhunath (Monkey Temple) & monasteries, ancient Kings Palaces and courtyard in Kathmandu; after an interesting sightseeing back to the hotel
Day 19: International departure homeward bound.
Last day in Nepal with wonderful memorable time in Himalaya trekking around Annapurna & Thorang –la with Team Himalaya and transfer to airport for the flight back home or to respective destination.