Tsum Valley Trek is a stunning Himalayan adventure that takes trekkers through the remote and culturally rich Tsum Valley in Nepal. Tsum Valley Trek is a unique trek, often referred to as the “Hidden Valley” trek, that offers a remarkable blend of natural beauty and cultural exploration. The region that was once a part of Tibet has a radically distinct appearance from other locations. The Tsumbas, also known as the residents of Tsum Valley, are of Tibetan descent and have their unique ancient dialect, art, culture, and religion. Tsum Valley Trek is the high and enigmatic valley, which once served as a crucial trading route between China and Tibet, has only been reached by a select few daring adventurers. We first trek the conventional Manaslu route, followed by other trekking trails, and then move towards the more unique Trail of Manaslu Tsum Valley.
Tsum Valley was once a distinct geographical region known as “Tsum Tso Chuksum,” which refers to the region governed by the thirteen provinces. Many of the Tsum Kingdom’s remnants can still be found in the secluded valley, which has largely escaped infrastructure and urbanization. Thus, the valley’s native culture is still there and unaltered.
Tsum Valley Trek’s start and end point is Arughat, a seven-hour drive from Kathmandu. The first half of the Tsum Valley Trek ascends the Budhi Gandaki Valley on good paths through a mix of dense forest, terraced fields and hill villages. As we leave the main Manaslu Trail for the Tsum Valley Trek, suddenly we get a feeling of entering truly into the hidden valley. While on the trek, we also pass through the alpine forests, and glacial rivers, and enjoy the warm hospitality of ethnic people. Pass the lower Buri Gandaki regions of Liding, Machhakhola, Jagat and Philim. We also visit the ancient Gombas of the region such as Rachen Gompa, Mu Gompa, and Dephyudonma Gompa.
Upon our arrival at the Tribhuwan International Airport (TIA) in Kathmandu, we will be greeted by a representative from Tour and Trekking Nepal who will drop us off at our hotel. After checking in, we take a rest or visit HTour and Trekking Nepal’s office. We may also stroll in the streets of Thamel, a tourist hub in Kathmandu for some souvenir shopping. In the evening, there will be a welcome dinner hosted by Tour and Trekking Nepal. For dinner, you will be served excellent Nepalese cuisine which will introduce you to the country’s authentic food culture. Overnight in Kathmandu.
We start a guided tour of several of the most historical and spiritual attractions in Kathmandu. Some of these landmarks including the historic Durbar Square, the sacred Hindu temple of Pashupatinath, the famous ‘Monkey Temple’ (Swayambhunath) and the Buddhist shrine (Bouddhanath) which is one of the largest stupas in the world are listed as the UNESCO World Heritage Sites. There will be a brief pre-trip group discussion followed by trek preparation in the late afternoon at Tour and Trekking Nepal’s office in Thamel around noon. Overnight in Kathmandu.
We drive 7-8 hour’s from Kathmandu into the western mountains takes us to Arughat via Dhadingbesi, headquarter of the Dhading district. Through the dirt road from Dhadingbesi viewing the greenery hills we reach Arughat, our trek start point. Arughat is a major town in the region and is divided in two parts with the Budhi Gandaki river flowing between them. Overnight at Arughat.
We cross the bridge over Budhi Gandaki and begin our trek from the western part of Arughat., we follow the stone-paved street north through the bazaar. We pass through the hydro- electric power plant, fields of rice and millet to Mangaltar, and through forests we arrive at Shanti Bazar. The trail to Budhi Gandaki valley now becomes steeper and the trek more difficult as we cross the Arkhet Khola on a suspension bridge, passing the shops of Arkhet Bazar. Descend to a high, cascading waterfall making a long steep slog up a ridge to Kuerepani. Then from here the trail descends to Soti Khola. Overnight stay at the campsite at Soti Khola. Overnight at Soti Khola.
Cross the bridge and trek through the beautiful Sal forests, then climb onto a ridge above huge rapids on the Budhi Gandaki. The rocky trail then weaves its way up and down, past two tropical waterfalls on a steep, rocky trail clinging to the side of a cliff. It eventually makes its way down and past a few rice terraces, then up and around to the Gurung village of Labubesi. Climb behind a rocky outcrop, where the valley opens and the Budhi Gandaki meanders among wide gravel bars. Drop to the sandy river bed and walk along rounded stones before climbing over a side ridge. Head down again to the river and traverse to Machha Khola village. Overnight at Machha Khola.
The narrow trail makes some minor ups and downs and eventually crosses the Tharo Khola, flowing in a rocky ravine, then reaches Khorlabesi. After a few more ups and downs there is a small trailside hotspring, from where we reach to Tatopani. From the Hot spring we climb over another ridge, then cross the Budhi Gandaki on a suspension bridge. Climb on a wide, well-crafted staircase, then across a landslide and over a ridge to Dobhan. Crossing a suspension bridge over the Dobhan Khola, the trail climbs on a rugged trail to Duman. Ascending up again to the Budhi Gandaki, we reach at Yaru Khola. Crossing a suspension bridge over the Yaru Khola we climb the stone stairs and then drop to the river and again climb more stone stairs to Tharo Bharyang. Cross to the west bank of the budhi gandaki, climb over a ridge, and trek along the river then climb towards the village of Jagat.
We climb over a rocky ridge to Salleri, and then descend to Sirdibas. The valley widens a bit as the trail continues up to Ghatta Khola. Continue upstream to a long simple hanging bridge. Climb up to Philim, a large gurung village. Philim valley is well known for Japanese made school and police station. Walk past Philim to the north across a forest with the views of the narrowing valley we reach Chisopani. Overnight at Chisopani.
After Ekle Bhatti cross the gorge and half an hour walk in the right side we get to see the big and beautiful waterfall and enter the pine tree forests. Descend down to trail going to the Tsum Valley. Climb through pine and rhododendron forests. Enjoy the views of Himalchuli mountains at 7893m and Boudha Himal from Lokpa, a small beautiful village. Pass Lokpa, descend half an hour towards Lungwa khola and climbing jick jack difficult trail further two hours north through pines and rhododendrons we reach Gumlung. Crossing the Siyar Khola, finally arrive at Chumling, from where we can view Shringi Himal. Visit the old Chumling gompa, and the stone streets of the village.
Cross the suspension bridge onto the opposite bank. Enjoy the great views of Ganesh Himal. Walk past Rainjam to Serpu Khola crossing another bridge we arrive at the Gho Village. Another continues 2 hours climb to Tsum takes us to the village of Chhokangparo. Weather permitting; enjoy the views of Himalchuli at 7893 meters and Ganesh Himal at7140m. Overnight at Chokhangparo.
While climbing above Chokhangparo, better to be careful of altitude problems. Walk past Lamagaon crossing rope suspension bridge to the Rachen Gompa, which is also well known as Nunnery Gompa too. We make a small visit and then we cross the Shiar Khola. Continue walking through the well managed villages Lar (micro hydro power), Phurbe and Pangdun. Leaving old historic Stupa of Bhudda in a way crossing the village of Chhule, climb upstream and cross the bridge to finally arrive at Nile. If you consider we can make your visit to a famous monastery of Chhule which is located in the top of area.
We are now almost close to the Tibetan border. Walk to the west bank of the valley through the Tibetan landscapes. Climb up to the Mu Gompa. We also visit the monastery. Then after, we make a visit to the Dhephu Doma Gompa.
Today we make a sightseeing of the whole Mu Gompa Region. Mu Gompa is the largest monastery in the region. The Gompa lies at the highest and most remote part of the Tsum Valley. After exploring the Mu Gompa area, you may also consider the option of getting to the base of Pika Himal (4865m).
Trek back through Chhule and Phurbe, on the east bank of the Shiar Khola. Finally we arrive at Burgi village. The Burgi village is a small beautiful village. Climb up to the Milarepa’s Cave Milarepa Cave (piren phu) is known for its mesmerizing glimpses of Poshyop Glacier, Kipu Himal and Churke himal.
Continue trekking watching the greenery of nature and descend down to Chhokang Paro again. From their continue descending to Gho. Descending further, we arrive at the bridge over the Sarpu Khola. Trekking along the lower Tsum Valley takes you to again Chumling.
The trail continues to Lokpa. After lunch south on a flat trail we move ahead. Enjoy the gorgeous Samba Falls. Finally arrive at Philim after 6 or 7 hours long trekking. A trail passes through the Phillim village that leads to the Ganesh Himal Base Camp.
Trek starts today from Philim to Khorlabesi via Jagat and Tatopani. Descend down to Sirdibas and we finally reach to Jagat. Further descend takes us to Yaruphant. The arid Tibetan climate now gives way to subtropical green vegetation. Continue trekking to Dobhan. Finally arrive at Tatopani. There is a hot spring at Tatopani. If interested, you may dip yourself in the hot spring and relax your tired muscles by soaking yourself in the hot spring. If not continue walking up and down from Tatopani to reach Khorlabesi, our rest place for the day.
The trail crosses the Tharo Khola flowing in a rocky ravine. Head down again to the river and traverse to Machha Khola village. Walk along the Budhi Gandaki River to reach to Gurung village of Labubesi. Pass the two waterfalls on a steep rocky trail on the side of a cliff. We then reach Khursane. Walk along the ridge above Budhi Gandaki and cross the Sal forests. Finally, cross the bridge to arrive at Soti Khola.
Climb up to the ridge of Kyorpani. Descend down to the cascading waterfall. Trekking further arrive at Arkhet. Cross the Arkhet Khola. We are now leaving the Budhi Gandaki Valley. Arrive at Sante Bazaar; pass through the forests to Maltar. Finally, passing by the hydroelectric plant following the stone streets, we arrive at the Arughat Bazar. Back to Kathmandu along the banks of the Marsyangdi and Trishuli rivers with splendid views of green hills, mountains, farming terraces and villages on both sides of the road. To celebrate the successful completion of our journey, we will have a farewell dinner in the evening. Overnight in Kathmandu.
Our journey in Nepal comes to an end today! A Tour and Trekking Nepal representative will drop us off at the airport approximately 3 hours before our scheduled flight. On our way to home, we have plenty of time to plan our next adventure in the wonderful country of Nepal.
Note: The above-mentioned program itinerary is a sample. The period and cost of tour and trekking, volunteering and internship can be changed or extended as per travellers or volunteers' availability of duration.