Annapurna Circuit Trek-16 Days

  •  Activities: Trekking
  •   Trip Grade: Moderate

Trip Introduction

Annapurna Circuit Trek, also known as Thorong la pass trek, is one of the greatest treks in the world. Crossing two beautiful river valleys and encircling the Annapurna massif itself, it is among the popular choices of trekkers all around the globe. The 160-230 km route rises at an altitude of 5,416m on the Thorong La pass, touching the edge of the Tibetan plateau.

The route for this round trip is usually anti-clockwise which is considered safer so as to get more acclimatization time; around two weeks. One has to tackle intense inclined paths with fewer services of food and accommodation if chosen other way.

The trek leads the trekkers in the course of Marsyangdi river valley and Kaligandaki river valley with spell bounding views of mountains like Dhaulagiri, Macchapucchre, Manasalu, Gangapurna Annapurna range and Tilicho peak. Trekkers can explore the culture and traditions of people in Manang and Mustang along with the diverse landscapes of mountains, plains, drylands, plateaus, and forests. Varieties of flora and fauna are found along the trip and with chills of every season in 2 weeks.

 

Itinerary

This round trip in the Annapurna Region is a trek through Thorang la pass – biggest pass in the trail takes only 15 days to complete. The trek passes through Syange, Taal, Bagarchhap, Chame, Upper Pisang, Manang, Ledar, Phedi, Muktinath, Marpha, Tatopani, Ghorepani, Poon Hill, Birethanti and Pokhara consisting many of the small treks famous in Nepal.

Day 1:  Kathmandu – Syange (8-9 hours)

The trek is started from traveling to Syange via Dumre and Besisahar in the Prithvi highway. The journey itself is a fascinating one as trekkers are able to enjoy various landscapes and diverse natural beauty.

Day 2: Trek to Taal from Syange (6-7 hours)

The official hike begins today ascending through steep paths. We move towards a beautiful village of Tal- the first village in Manang, situated in a plateau next to a huge waterfall.

Day 3: Trek to Bagarchhap (5-6 hours)

From Taal, we follow the trail crossing Marsyangdi valley. The journey is a stone stairway up and down towards Dharapani. Here we find a stone entrance Chhorten indicating that we have reached a Tibetan influenced village. We then move towards Bagarchhap which is a transition zone before we head to dry highlands.

Day 4: Trek to Koto/Chyame (5-6 hours)

Today the rocky trail climbs to Tyanja. Crossing a forest and river we reach Kopar. After a while, we reach Chyame, headquarter of Manang district. The beautiful town treats us with the view of Annapurna II and two small hot springs.

Day 5: Trek to Upper Pisang (6-7 hours)

The journey of today starts through the hike in deep forest in a narrow valley crossing a river with a long bridge. We then cross another bridge from where the view of Paungda Danda appears. The trail then climbs towards Pisang which is a center for observing local tradition and culture.

Day 6: Trek from Pisang to Manang (5-6 hours) 

We continue our trip towards drier part of Manang district today. Leaving Pisang, we have alternate trails north and south of Marsyangdi River which eventually meet at Mungji. The southern route by Hongde requires less climbing than the northern route via Ghyaru. From Mungji, the trail continues through the hidden village of Bryanga.

Day 7: Manang Acclimatization

Today we are 3500 meters above sea level in one of the beautiful places in the earth. We spend the day praising the beauty of the magnificent views and visiting the ice lake nearby. The village located beneath Annapurna and Gangapurna is a must to explore.

Day 8: Trek to Ledar from Manang (5-6 hours) 

We depart from Manang towards the Thorong La Pass which is at a higher altitude than Manang. We climb through Tenki, leaving the Marsyangdi valley behind, through Jarsang Khola valley. We then reach Ledar.

Day 9: Trek to Phedi/ High camp (5-6 hours) 

Today the trip descends to cross the river. Then we climb up to Phedi (foot of the hill) which is 4420m above the sea level.

Day 10: Trek to Muktinath via Thorang La pass (6-7 hours) 

The journey from Phedi to Thorong La pass – the highest point of this trip begins in the morning. We climb to the steep trail about 4 hours to reach the pass. It is marked by Chhortens () and prayer flags. The magnificent view of mountains and landscapes is seen from here. High descend from pass leads to Muktinath which is a holy place for both Hindus and Buddhists.

Day 11: Trek to Marpha (5-6 hours) 

Moderate walking towards Kaligandaki valley and we reach Jomsom- the headquarter of Mustang. Few hours walk from there; we reach Marpha, a beautiful town with narrow stone-paved lanes covered by beautiful houses cleared with white. The settlement is of Thakali people with one monastery and beautiful apple orchards where one can enjoy local apple brandy ‘Marpha’.

Day 12: Drive to Tatopani (5-6 hours) 

After 11 days of walking, we take a local bus or jeep from Marpha to Tatopani meaning “Hot Spring” in Nepali where there are numerous hot spring pools on the bank of Kaligandaki River. Here, one can enjoy natural hot bath to relax from tiring journey.

Day 13: Trek to Ghorepani (5-6 hours) 

The journey today starts crossing the bridge in Kaligandaki River and diverting uphill towards Magar villages. After a steep section in the dense alpine forest we reach Chitre village and after a few hours, we reach Ghorepani – the village with breathtaking views of Dhaulagiri, Annapurna south and Vara- shikar mountains.

Day 14: Trek to Poon hill – Birethanti- Pokhara (6-7 hours)

The last day of the trek is an early hour hike upwards Poon Hill to rejoice the sunrise view over the chain of mountains. The walkthrough Rhododendron forests lead to Birethanti and we drive to Pokhara from there.

Day 15: Pokhara to Kathmandu

A flight from the lakeside city towards the capital concludes the enticing trek.

 

 Food and Accommodation

The food menu largely consists of Daal-Bhat, momos, pasta, sandwiches, pizzas, burgers, Indian dishes, noodles, toasts, and omelets. You cannot expect green vegetables in our food as the altitude increases. Otherwise, there is no problem in foods as there are plenty of tea houses and lodges in the area. Purified water stations are set up in various places along the circuit.

Most of the guest houses offer well-cooked food, good bed and warm blankets in the area. Some rooms have properly attached bathrooms while others don’t but there is no problem for toilets in the circuit area. Rooms are often found on the basis of sharing.

 

Difficulties

The major difficulty faced by the trekkers in this trip is the altitude sickness and hazards of walking 6-7 hours a day. It is advised to consult a physician before the tip and get medicines as per required. The roads are not constructed properly and there is a probability of tripping many times and getting blisters in your feet. The circuit doesn’t contain any hospital so people with major health issues are discredited the idea of this trip. Other than these, the trip is quite a smooth ride.

 

Important Tips to Know

Make sure you include your essentials and extra foods like energy bars and others in your backpack as you will not find shops throughout the circuit. It is very important to have a comfortable backpack with only things you need actually. A set of comfortable warm clothes is a must have as the weather gets tricky sometimes. A walking stick and comfortable pair of trekking shoes are valuable throughout the journey. One shouldn’t forget to carry sun protection lotion and basic medicines. There is no problem of network and wi-fi in most areas.

 

Not really satisfied with this itinerary ? Make your own Customize It

What is included?

  •  All national transportations as mentioned in trip itinerary
  • Accommodation and meals in standard hotels/teahouses during the trek
  • Excellent English speaking trek leader, guides and porters to carry luggage
  • All local/governmental taxes, permits and registrations
  • A portable medical kit
  • Welcome and farewell dinner

What is not included?

  • Visa processing fees
  • Rescue and travel insurances
  • Extra stay in Nepal other than mentioned in trip itinerary
  • Private vehicles, meals, shopping and other personal expenses

Best Time to Travel

Most of the treks in the Himalayas are not possible in monsoon but the Annapurna circuit trek can be achieved at any time of the year.

The most popular season for this trek is spring (October- November) as the weather is warm and the sky is clear most of the times. The temperature may drop during the night.

Winter (December- March) trek is also possible but the temperature can reach below the freezing point which can be hard for most people. Snow blocks most of the trails and there could be a chance of avalanches.

The second most popular season is summer (April- May). The trek can be crowded so people enjoying fewer crowds are not encouraged in this season.

Monsoon (July- September) trek is suggested for the hikers as the days are often damp and there are fewer crowds on the way. The blooming of the floras throughout the trip adds up to the refreshment of trekkers.

Day 1:  Kathmandu – Syange (8-9 hours)

Day 2: Trek to Taal from Syange (6-7 hours)

Day 3: Trek to Bagarchhap (5-6 hours)

Day 4: Trek to Koto/Chyame (5-6 hours)

Day 5: Trek to Upper Pisang (6-7 hours)

Day 6: Trek from Pisang to Manang (5-6 hours) 

Day 7: Manang Acclimatization

Day 8: Trek to Ledar from Manang (5-6 hours) 

Day 9: Trek to Phedi/ High camp (5-6 hours) 

Day 10: Trek to Muktinath via Thorang La pass (6-7 hours) 

Day 11: Trek to Marpha (5-6 hours) 

Day 12: Drive to Tatopani (5-6 hours) 

Day 13: Trek to Ghorepani (5-6 hours) 

Day 14: Trek to Poon hill – Birethanti- Pokhara (6-7 hours)

Day 15: Pokhara to Kathmandu

Date And Costs

Trip Start Date Trip End Date Status Prices
1200 Book Now

What is included?

  •  All national transportations as mentioned in trip itinerary
  • Accommodation and meals in standard hotels/teahouses during the trek
  • Excellent English speaking trek leader, guides and porters to carry luggage
  • All local/governmental taxes, permits and registrations
  • A portable medical kit
  • Welcome and farewell dinner

What is not included?

  • Visa processing fees
  • Rescue and travel insurances
  • Extra stay in Nepal other than mentioned in trip itinerary
  • Private vehicles, meals, shopping and other personal expenses

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  •  Activities: Trekking
  •   Trip Grade: Moderate

Trip Introduction

Annapurna Circuit Trek, also known as Thorong la pass trek, is one of the greatest treks in the world. Crossing two beautiful river valleys and encircling the Annapurna massif itself, it is among the popular choices of trekkers all around the globe. The 160-230 km route rises at an altitude of 5,416m on the Thorong La pass, touching the edge of the Tibetan plateau.

The route for this round trip is usually anti-clockwise which is considered safer so as to get more acclimatization time; around two weeks. One has to tackle intense inclined paths with fewer services of food and accommodation if chosen other way.

The trek leads the trekkers in the course of Marsyangdi river valley and Kaligandaki river valley with spell bounding views of mountains like Dhaulagiri, Macchapucchre, Manasalu, Gangapurna Annapurna range and Tilicho peak. Trekkers can explore the culture and traditions of people in Manang and Mustang along with the diverse landscapes of mountains, plains, drylands, plateaus, and forests. Varieties of flora and fauna are found along the trip and with chills of every season in 2 weeks.

 

Itinerary

This round trip in the Annapurna Region is a trek through Thorang la pass – biggest pass in the trail takes only 15 days to complete. The trek passes through Syange, Taal, Bagarchhap, Chame, Upper Pisang, Manang, Ledar, Phedi, Muktinath, Marpha, Tatopani, Ghorepani, Poon Hill, Birethanti and Pokhara consisting many of the small treks famous in Nepal.

Day 1:  Kathmandu – Syange (8-9 hours)

The trek is started from traveling to Syange via Dumre and Besisahar in the Prithvi highway. The journey itself is a fascinating one as trekkers are able to enjoy various landscapes and diverse natural beauty.

Day 2: Trek to Taal from Syange (6-7 hours)

The official hike begins today ascending through steep paths. We move towards a beautiful village of Tal- the first village in Manang, situated in a plateau next to a huge waterfall.

Day 3: Trek to Bagarchhap (5-6 hours)

From Taal, we follow the trail crossing Marsyangdi valley. The journey is a stone stairway up and down towards Dharapani. Here we find a stone entrance Chhorten indicating that we have reached a Tibetan influenced village. We then move towards Bagarchhap which is a transition zone before we head to dry highlands.

Day 4: Trek to Koto/Chyame (5-6 hours)

Today the rocky trail climbs to Tyanja. Crossing a forest and river we reach Kopar. After a while, we reach Chyame, headquarter of Manang district. The beautiful town treats us with the view of Annapurna II and two small hot springs.

Day 5: Trek to Upper Pisang (6-7 hours)

The journey of today starts through the hike in deep forest in a narrow valley crossing a river with a long bridge. We then cross another bridge from where the view of Paungda Danda appears. The trail then climbs towards Pisang which is a center for observing local tradition and culture.

Day 6: Trek from Pisang to Manang (5-6 hours) 

We continue our trip towards drier part of Manang district today. Leaving Pisang, we have alternate trails north and south of Marsyangdi River which eventually meet at Mungji. The southern route by Hongde requires less climbing than the northern route via Ghyaru. From Mungji, the trail continues through the hidden village of Bryanga.

Day 7: Manang Acclimatization

Today we are 3500 meters above sea level in one of the beautiful places in the earth. We spend the day praising the beauty of the magnificent views and visiting the ice lake nearby. The village located beneath Annapurna and Gangapurna is a must to explore.

Day 8: Trek to Ledar from Manang (5-6 hours) 

We depart from Manang towards the Thorong La Pass which is at a higher altitude than Manang. We climb through Tenki, leaving the Marsyangdi valley behind, through Jarsang Khola valley. We then reach Ledar.

Day 9: Trek to Phedi/ High camp (5-6 hours) 

Today the trip descends to cross the river. Then we climb up to Phedi (foot of the hill) which is 4420m above the sea level.

Day 10: Trek to Muktinath via Thorang La pass (6-7 hours) 

The journey from Phedi to Thorong La pass – the highest point of this trip begins in the morning. We climb to the steep trail about 4 hours to reach the pass. It is marked by Chhortens () and prayer flags. The magnificent view of mountains and landscapes is seen from here. High descend from pass leads to Muktinath which is a holy place for both Hindus and Buddhists.

Day 11: Trek to Marpha (5-6 hours) 

Moderate walking towards Kaligandaki valley and we reach Jomsom- the headquarter of Mustang. Few hours walk from there; we reach Marpha, a beautiful town with narrow stone-paved lanes covered by beautiful houses cleared with white. The settlement is of Thakali people with one monastery and beautiful apple orchards where one can enjoy local apple brandy ‘Marpha’.

Day 12: Drive to Tatopani (5-6 hours) 

After 11 days of walking, we take a local bus or jeep from Marpha to Tatopani meaning “Hot Spring” in Nepali where there are numerous hot spring pools on the bank of Kaligandaki River. Here, one can enjoy natural hot bath to relax from tiring journey.

Day 13: Trek to Ghorepani (5-6 hours) 

The journey today starts crossing the bridge in Kaligandaki River and diverting uphill towards Magar villages. After a steep section in the dense alpine forest we reach Chitre village and after a few hours, we reach Ghorepani – the village with breathtaking views of Dhaulagiri, Annapurna south and Vara- shikar mountains.

Day 14: Trek to Poon hill – Birethanti- Pokhara (6-7 hours)

The last day of the trek is an early hour hike upwards Poon Hill to rejoice the sunrise view over the chain of mountains. The walkthrough Rhododendron forests lead to Birethanti and we drive to Pokhara from there.

Day 15: Pokhara to Kathmandu

A flight from the lakeside city towards the capital concludes the enticing trek.

 

 Food and Accommodation

The food menu largely consists of Daal-Bhat, momos, pasta, sandwiches, pizzas, burgers, Indian dishes, noodles, toasts, and omelets. You cannot expect green vegetables in our food as the altitude increases. Otherwise, there is no problem in foods as there are plenty of tea houses and lodges in the area. Purified water stations are set up in various places along the circuit.

Most of the guest houses offer well-cooked food, good bed and warm blankets in the area. Some rooms have properly attached bathrooms while others don’t but there is no problem for toilets in the circuit area. Rooms are often found on the basis of sharing.

 

Difficulties

The major difficulty faced by the trekkers in this trip is the altitude sickness and hazards of walking 6-7 hours a day. It is advised to consult a physician before the tip and get medicines as per required. The roads are not constructed properly and there is a probability of tripping many times and getting blisters in your feet. The circuit doesn’t contain any hospital so people with major health issues are discredited the idea of this trip. Other than these, the trip is quite a smooth ride.

 

Important Tips to Know

Make sure you include your essentials and extra foods like energy bars and others in your backpack as you will not find shops throughout the circuit. It is very important to have a comfortable backpack with only things you need actually. A set of comfortable warm clothes is a must have as the weather gets tricky sometimes. A walking stick and comfortable pair of trekking shoes are valuable throughout the journey. One shouldn’t forget to carry sun protection lotion and basic medicines. There is no problem of network and wi-fi in most areas.

 

Day to Day Itinerary

Day 1:  Kathmandu – Syange (8-9 hours)

Day 2: Trek to Taal from Syange (6-7 hours)

Day 3: Trek to Bagarchhap (5-6 hours)

Day 4: Trek to Koto/Chyame (5-6 hours)

Day 5: Trek to Upper Pisang (6-7 hours)

Day 6: Trek from Pisang to Manang (5-6 hours) 

Day 7: Manang Acclimatization

Day 8: Trek to Ledar from Manang (5-6 hours) 

Day 9: Trek to Phedi/ High camp (5-6 hours) 

Day 10: Trek to Muktinath via Thorang La pass (6-7 hours) 

Day 11: Trek to Marpha (5-6 hours) 

Day 12: Drive to Tatopani (5-6 hours) 

Day 13: Trek to Ghorepani (5-6 hours) 

Day 14: Trek to Poon hill – Birethanti- Pokhara (6-7 hours)

Day 15: Pokhara to Kathmandu

What is included?

  •  All national transportations as mentioned in trip itinerary
  • Accommodation and meals in standard hotels/teahouses during the trek
  • Excellent English speaking trek leader, guides and porters to carry luggage
  • All local/governmental taxes, permits and registrations
  • A portable medical kit
  • Welcome and farewell dinner

What is not included?

  • Visa processing fees
  • Rescue and travel insurances
  • Extra stay in Nepal other than mentioned in trip itinerary
  • Private vehicles, meals, shopping and other personal expenses

Best Time to Travel

Most of the treks in the Himalayas are not possible in monsoon but the Annapurna circuit trek can be achieved at any time of the year.

The most popular season for this trek is spring (October- November) as the weather is warm and the sky is clear most of the times. The temperature may drop during the night.

Winter (December- March) trek is also possible but the temperature can reach below the freezing point which can be hard for most people. Snow blocks most of the trails and there could be a chance of avalanches.

The second most popular season is summer (April- May). The trek can be crowded so people enjoying fewer crowds are not encouraged in this season.

Monsoon (July- September) trek is suggested for the hikers as the days are often damp and there are fewer crowds on the way. The blooming of the floras throughout the trip adds up to the refreshment of trekkers.