The legendary Annapurna region of western Nepal is the most diverse and popular trekking region in Nepal. Every year, the region sees thousands of trekkers coming from halfway across the globe to be a part of unforgettable trekking experiences at the western Himalayans. Be it a three-weeks long circuit stretching into the majestic Mustang, or, a short, three-day trek for a panoramic view of mountains, there is an itinerary suitable for everyone.
Annapurna Semi Circuit Trekking is one of the most enriching and rewarding trekking experience in the whole region. It can be described as a complete package trek which consists of just the right amount of fun, adventure, exploration and relaxation. Since it is a circuit trek, we will follow a different route while returning, coming a full circle. The itinerary has been designed in such a way that there is not a single place for monotony, With the hike to challenging Thorong La Pass, the trek will prove to be very adventurous, perfect for trekkers looking for an adrenaline rush. Similarly, the trek to the historic and forbidden kingdom of Mustang will give you surreal Old-World vibe. In this way, the Annapurna Semi Circuit Trekking is a truly gratifying and one-of-a-kind trek.
The 15-day long trek begin with an eight-hour drive from Kathmandu to Beshi Shahar in Lamjung district. As we commence our trek northwards, we will witness a dramatic variation in the landscape of the region, varying from serene terraced fields to forested trails of rhododendron, pines, oaks and fir forests. Further northward, we will trek through the windswept valleys and terrians as the mountains appear nearer and nearer. As we trek through the picturesque hamlets like Chame and Pisang, on the fourth day, we will reach Manang. Manang itself is a tourist hotcake with its unscathed natural and cultural beauty. Trekking to the Thorong La Pass and crossing it is one of the most enthralling and adventurous highlight of the whole trek. Similarly, while returning, we will trek down through the Mustang district. A forbidden kingdom until a decade ago, the region boasts of impeccable history and culture palpable in its tangible and intangible heritages. The trek comes to an end at Pokhara, the numero Uno tourist destination in Nepal.
On top of the mounting natural beauty, the region also boasts of its grand history, culture and traditions. The Gurungs, who are the traditional inhabitants of the region, have impressively preserved and celebrated their ancient culture and civilization which is visible in their lifestyle till today. During the homestays, trekkers will have the fantastic opportunity to experience their warm hospitality and live a traditional Gurung lifestyle for few days.
In short, we can say that Annapurna Semi Circuit trek is a one-of-a-kind, amazing trek that packs in on history, adventure, and serenity. Although it is a moderate level trek, it is preferable that the trekkers have previous trekking experience, especially because the itinerary involves crossing the Thorong La Pass at a very great elevation.
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 trek Annapurna Semi Circuit & Thorang-la.
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 Jomsom 2, 715 m – 04 hours.
After Muktinath rest of the journey will be easier with moderate walks all the way after Thorang-la, morning walk with a drop of 1,200m of downhill to Kaligandaki river valley, this pleasant walk reaches the vast Kaligandaki river valley with a small break at Ekale bhatti. From here onwards gets windy in the afternoon time, from this place few hours walk to Jomsom, Jomsom the headquarter of Mustang region with an airstrip located above Kaligandaki River. This town is in the centre or junction of Annapurna and Dhaulagiri circuit, Upper Mustang and to holy Muktinath route, afternoon with ample time to explore around Jomsom.
Day 12: Fly to Pokhara and transfer to hotel.
Morning transfer to Jomsom airport for a short scenic flight to scenic Pokhara, Pokhara valley another highlight of this fabulous trip, Pokhara regarded as the most beautiful place on this globe with awesome mountain views and natural surrounding with its serene lake Phewa.
Day 13: 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 14: 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 15: International departure homeward bound.
Last day in Nepal with wonderful memorable time in Himalaya trekking Annapurna Semi Circuit & Thorang –la with Team Himalaya and transfer to airport for the flight back home or to respective destination.