Annapurna Circuit Trek trail saw the light of day in 1977 and is an archetypal Himalayan trek. The Tour and Trekking Nepal itinerary are geared to give you the most out of this unique trip; it completes the Circuit with a few new variations that will enhance this magnificent trek with more fulfilment & a sense of purpose. We ascend the Marsyangdi Valley before heading to the high country, windswept 5416m Thorong La (pass) and around the Annapurna massif. This trek offers baffling contrasts throughout the course of your venture. The trails start and get wrapped up in the lush green foothills of the Annapurna range which are dotted with colourful Hindu villages & cows roaming around with vermilion on their foreheads.
Annapurna Circuit Trek venture will take you around the Annapurna circuit as we hike along beautiful Gurung & Magar villages bubbling with the life of the trekking trail. The Annapurna round is the kind of trek that is rewarding in a sense where, despite the fluctuating elevations & toughness of the trails, we don’t have to camp out in the cold, even though some areas are pretty remote; we enjoy the dining-room stoves and famed hospitality of the local people of the Annapurna region, whose warmth also keeps us warm in the winter. All our gear is carried by sturdy porters, and we have local guides explain the various cultures, mountains, and sights to us along the way the going is tough, & if these are the rewards, the landscapes & the apple pies could warm your heart for 100 years.
The ‘Circuit’ also provides unequalled opportunities to explore the backdrops of both the northern and the southern Himalayas where the amazing views just leave you gasping for breath. From the thick fir and rhododendron forests to the harsh, thin atmosphere of the Tibetan plateau; the ethnic groups we come across along the way, lowland Hindus and highland Buddhists, are as varied as the mind-blowing landscapes. From the staggering heights of the Thorung Pass at (5416m) line upon lines of snow ridges just flow before you whilst below lies the sub-tropical Kali Gandaki Gorge, a busy pilgrimage and trade route controlled by the Thakalis who inhabit the lowlands of Mustang.
As we trek north of the Great Himalayan Divide there is a dramatic change as we enter the bleak landscape of the Tibetan Plateau where the culture is overwhelmingly Buddhist. We then head back down the great Kali Gandaki Valley, said to be one of the deepest gorges on earth with Annapurna and Dhaulagiri standing naked & towering some 7,000 meters above before we haul up to rest from this elating trek. Our route embraces the ancient trading link beside the Kaligandaki River. The location of the Kali Gandaki gorge between Tibet and India has made this area one of the most important passageways through the Himalayas for thousands of years. It’s a never-ending gorge that flows to oblivion from its origin, & as a tiny spring in Mustang, the river flows south to India carving its way between the two towering massifs of Dhaulagiri at (8172 m) and Annapurna (8091m). These two colossal peaks are only 35 km apart, turning the plunge to the Kali Gandaki at Tatopani from their summits into a brainstorming 6660m gorge – the deepest on Earth. The trek finally concludes at the Kali Gandaki river valley. En route, you trot along paddy fields and subtropical forests, view the beautiful mountain scenery, several waterfalls and gargantuan cliffs with your camera on overdrive, and you can also stop over & experience interesting village life by striking up a conversation with the local folks as you come across some amazing cultural factors that can go into your notebooks. The entire trip is virtually enlivening & will keep you spellbound day after day.
Upon your arrival at Kathmandu International Airport, you will be welcomed by a representative from Volunteer Society Treks. After sorting out your custom formalities (Visa etc) you will be then transferred to the hotel. The representative will help you check into your designated hotel and give you some time to freshen up. After this, we will attend an orientation about your trek led by our Trekking leader over a typical Nepali welcome dinner that will include a scintillating cultural dance performed by the local belles. You then return to your hotel for your first overnight in the valley of the gods! *Included Meal Dinner. (B,B)
Kathmandu is the cultural heart of Nepal and has been a famous destination for tourists ever since Nepal opened its borders to visitors. The city displays an interesting combination of Hinduism, Tibetan Buddhism and Western influence in the Valley. Patan and Bhaktapur, the two important neighboring cities bear much cultural and religious significance to Nepal’s landscape. There will be a full day guided tour to the histori Durbar Square, unique architectures and Kumari (living goddess), the sacred Hindu temple of Pashupati Nath, the famous ‘Monkey Temple’ (Swayambunath) and Buddhists shrine (Buddha Nath), in the evening, there will be a pre-trip discussion where we meet our trek leader and other stuff for your adventure trip.Overnight at hotel, included meal: (B,B)
We drive from Kathmandu for about 7 hours to Besishahar. We drive along the Trisili River through the beautiful countryside of Nepal. We can see many beautiful villages, farms, rivers and magnificent mountain scenarios. From Mugling we head along the roadway Pokhara. We leave the highway to Pokhara at Dumre and continue drive towards north to Besishahar. Besishahar offers us a first glimpse of the beautiful mountain range. We stay overnight at guesthouse (B, L, D)
We drive from Besishahar for about 7 hours to Chame. The trail follows the river Marshyadgdi upstream passing by the villages of Latamanang and Koto before further half an hour brings us at Chame. We stay overnight at guesthouse (B, L, D)
Today we will experiences a dramatic change of scenery. The trail then follows the steep narrow valley through pine woods and small villages with several ups and downs till you reach orchard village of Bhartang where you can have apple garden. We continue through the garden path up to a bridge and we cross the river where the impressive curved rock faces of Paungda Danda rises from the riverbank, and climb to the village of Pisang at (3,300m.) We stay overnight at guesthouse (B, L, D)
After Pisang, there are two routes that we can follow to reach Manang. If taken lower, less strenuous route follows valley floor via Hongde, and upper route through upper Pisang via Geru, upper route is almost 3 hours longer than normal lower route, the sceneries are outstanding on the way to upper Pisang. We feel like we are horizontally in front of the magnificent peaks .The panoramic views of towering peaks such as Annapurna 2, 3, 4, Pisang peak Gangapurna, and several others will definitely attract us. Passing carved Mani walls we arrive at the village of Manang. We stay overnight at guesthouse (B, L, D)
It is important to have an extra day in Manang for acclimatization as we start the climb towards the higher altitude, Thorong La. There are spectacular views of the majestic Himalayas peaks around the Manang valley, it’s not good idea to stay idle but short walk to higher altitude is recommended to get acclimatized with the altitude. Manang is right place to do that as next two days will be considered as a challenging trek for us with rapid gain in altitude. There are lots of options for day walks around Manang. One possibility is to walk to Khangsar village on the way to Tilicho Lake or a longer walk to Ice Lake above Braga. Also worth visiting is the Himalayan Rescue Association to get some ideas about rapid mountain sickness. We stay overnight at guesthouse (B, L, D)
From Manang, the trail ascent steady to the Tenki above Manang, and then continue to climb out of the Marshyadgdi valley to see the view of the Annapurna, Gangapurna and Tilicho peak from close distance. The trail follows this valley northward; passing through beautiful forest and turning northwest up the valley of Jarsang Khola. Now the trail goes through meadows where horses and yaks graze. After crossing a small river on a wooden bridge, the trail passes an ancient old Mani wall in a pleasant meadow and then reaches another small village of Yak Kharka. We stay overnight at guesthouse (B, L, D)
Today we trek slowly to make our way to the foot of the pass, Throng Phedi. It is a small busy settlement with an amazing view of mountains and landscapes. People use this place as a base. Some travelers also attempt a hike to the High camp to make easier for next day although we don’t recommend ascending High camp to stay overnight there because sleeping at higher altitude is not really advisable. Phedi means foot of the hill is a common Nepali name for any settlement at the bottom of a long climb. We stay overnight at guesthouse (B, L, D)
Today is the longest and hardest day of the entire trip. We leave Phedi early in the morning for climb to the pass with packed lunch. It is lifetime experiences- crossing the famous high pass, Throng –La. An early morning is highly recommended to complete this challenging pass. The first part of the trail becomes steepest initially and reaches at the high camp. Each moment we have to work hard through icy high- altitude eventually, after numerous false summits, we reach the pass itself at 5416. Ahead there is an outstanding panorama of majestic Himalayan peaks extending northwards into Tibet, and looking back we can see several of the main peaks of Annapurna. We reach Muktinath with the setting sun. Muktinath is an important pilgrimage place for both Hindus and Buddhist. . Muktinath itself demonstrates the religions harmony in Nepal. We stay overnight at guesthouse (B, L, D)
We drive to Beni along the Kaligandaki river.
Early morning at around 7:00 am, we drive by tourist bus to Kathmandu along the Trishuli and Marshyadgdi River through the beautiful countryside of Nepal that offers villages, Rivers greeneries, rice fields and wonderful mountain sceneries. After nearly 5-6 hours drive we arrive to Kathmandu. Your day is free, however, at even tide; you will be taken to a well known Nepali kitchen for a delicious farewell dinner of the original Nepalese cuisine. As you enjoy your meal, you will also be entertained to an exciting cultural dance performed by the local belles. You will enjoy this experience which is complimentary on behalf of the Volunteer Society Treks. We stay overnight at hotel (B, D).
Our office representatives will escort you to the airport for your connecting flight home. It’s been wonderful meeting you & knowing you all of these weeks. We are doubly sure you’ve had the vacation of a lifetime & we hope you will pass on your experiences to the generations to come. We will remember you and also hope you will remember us in the days ahead. Bon Voyage!! & take care!!! (B)
Note: The above-mentioned program itinerary is a sample. The period of tour or trekking can be changed or extended as per travellers availability of duration.