Manaslu Trekking considered as one of the most challenging treks in Nepal, the Manaslu Circuit will reward the adventurous with an unparalleled alpine experience. Opened in 1992, this area offers a combination of rich culture heritage, unsurpassed beauty, and biological diversity. Manaslu, the 8th highest peak on the planet, locally known as the 'mountain of the spirit', is one of the most spectacular snow-peaks in Nepal, and the Manaslu Circuit, officially open for trekking in the early 90s, a cultural trek par excellence, without a doubt one of the best treks in Nepal. Oddly, it's also one of the Nepal Himalayas least known treks. A trek around the 'high' Manaslu circuit is a step back in time, a glimpse of pristine Nepali and Tibetan villages walk through a remote Himalayan paradise. The diversity of the trek, from the Hindu middle hills to the Tibetan high-country dwellers and the awesome mountain scenery of the Manaslu Himal and surrounding peaks combine to make this circuit one of the most interesting, as well as one of the most challenging trekking in Nepal.
Duration: 18-20 days
Activities: Camping Trekking Package
Maximum altitude: 5140m
Best season: Sep-Oct-Nov/ Apr-May
Trip starts/Ends: In Kathmandu (Capital of Nepal)
Accommodations: Eco Camping organized inclusive breakfast, Lunch and Dinner.
Transport: Necessary as per package you have required depends on group size – car /van/bus/flight/ to and from starting and ending point and drive or flight from gateway town
Manaslu Trekking Itinerary
Day 01: Arrive in Kathmandu (1340m) and transfer to Hotel
You'll be met at the airport by a representative from the Eco Trek Nepal P. Ltd. Our representative will transfer to Hotel and will have welcome drink in the evening at the traditional Nepalese cuisine.
Day 02: Full day Kathmandu valley Guided tour. Our Guide will take around Kathmandu to show its back ground and history, visiting temples, monasteries and colorful city itself gives you a picture of Nepal.
Day 03: Drive to Gorkha. Trek to Kalikasthan 1060m
After breakfast in Kathmandu, about 5 hour drive from Kathmandu to the historic town of Gorkha, the old capital of Nepal, with it's old 'durbar', or King's palace and Gorkha Durbar at the top of the hill of Hindu deities, perched high up in the surrounding hillsides and reached by worn stone steps. After organizing the gear and loads with the porters, we head up to our first night's campsite above the Gorkha Fort, stopping en route to visit this well-maintained site, home of the powerful Gorkha royalty until about a century ago. We can see the crew setting up camp from the top of the fort.
Day 04: Kalikasthan to Arkhole 570m
After breakfast in the morning; we will head to Arkhole with pass through classic middle hills scenery; rolling, forested hills, snaking rivers with rounded rock strewn on the beaches, local fishermen casting their nets, iridescent rice fields, papaya, lemon and orange trees, water buffalos, thatched huts and local 'bhattis' (Nepali tea-houses). We have a leisurely six to seven hour day for our first real day of trekking; with many locals selling bananas and papayas en route (bring small change). We'll meet many colorful local communities and Hindu local en route and will have time to stop at the many traditional villages along the way. We camp along the beach at a lovely campsite just below the small village of Arkole. Take advantage of a chance for a sun-downer while we're still low in altitude!
Day 05: Arkhole to Baluwa 800m
A continuation of yesterday's lovely scenery and another six hour day, we trek though over several swaying suspension bridges spanning the river, past a high waterfall which tumbles to the trail, and back up just a bit to reach our camp at Baluwa in the early afternoon. Tomorrow we have a steep climb ahead of us, and this is the last campsite before the (large) hill. Head down to the river and perch yourselves on the smooth river rocks next to the wonderful swimming hole for a wash after our hot day if you like, and afterwards chilled beers are available from an enterprising little tea-house next to camp. The staff might even pick up some small fish for dinner.
Day 06: Baluwa to Barpak 1915m
Have a big breakfast this morning; we head off early to avoid the afternoon sun for our steep, long climb up to the wonderful village of Barpak, situated perfectly on a green ridge overlooking the misty valley below. It should take us under four hours to get to camp, with several chautaras (rest stops) and the lower village and lively school en route. Barpak is a large village densely populated by Gurung, Ghale (royalty) and Bisokarma, extremely clean, with wide alleys between the houses, grain and vegetables drying outside on the patios, several shops, viewpoints and flowers planted along the decks of these Gurung houses. Many of its men joined the Ghurkha Army, returned to Barpak with new wealth, and have built lovely houses. The villagers often organize 'cultural shows', the proceeds of which go to improving the village, so we might be treated to one in the early evening. We are towered over by Bauddhi Himal, a high, snow-capped peak which makes for wonderful sunrise and sunset photos.
Day 07: Barpark to Laprak 2200m
Another early start and a picturesque climb, with Bauddhi Himal providing a spectacular back-drop to the sprawling, scenic Barpak as we ascend the narrow ridge; we take the small, stone trail to the right of the main trail after an hour or so, and a total of three hours later, we reach the ridge, officially a pass, Gupsi Dada (3000m) which separates Laprak and Barpak, and are rewarded with panoramic mountain views along with herds of sheep grazing on the grassy hillsides from the peak. Bauddhi Himal, Shringi Himal, Ganesh Himal and the Langtang range all span the horizon; a truly breath-taking view. The rhododendrons are blooming brilliantly, in many hues of pink and red, around us, providing great photographs with the snow-peaks in back. Another steep down of a hour or two of trekking brings us down to another large Gurung village, Laprak. The villagers often offer some friendly indoctrination. We camp in the only campsite around, at the school in the upper section of the village, with several tea-houses nearby. Again, we have the afternoon free to explore the village; take a walk down the hill and a look into some of the houses, all with symbolic murals on the mud-brick walls. The villagers are friendly, and there are lots to explore in Laprak's winding maze of lanes.
Day 08: Laprak to Khorlabeshi 875m.
A classic Nepali trekking day of seven to eight hours, all beautiful. We descend through Laprak's maze of village paths and then to the river. After crossing a very rickety suspension bridge, we climb equally steeply back up, past terraced fields of pink sorghum and rice. We contour around several hillsides on a narrow trail, barely visible at times, up to a small chorten just below the village of Singla. From here, the going is easy, and we enjoy the views of the Manaslu Himal, Kutang Himal and Shringi Himal to the north as we walk down through more terraced fields and papaya trees, through the Gurung village of Khorla, and then down along a narrow, winding trail to Korlebesi on the Buri Gandaki River. Take care as the rocky steps just before the long suspension bridge to Khorlabesi are treacherous. Look out for the local women weaving straw mats in the village. We will probably get a visit in the evening from this village's cultural ambassadors, and perhaps have another show.
Day 09: Khorlabeshi to Jagat 1370m
A five hour day today, starting with an hour of walking along the river, by tobacco and buckwheat fields, past rocks washed smooth by the river, often climbing up stone steps, to reach the hot springs in the centre of the small, terraced village of Tatopani, where can enjoy for a time to soak our grungy bodies in the gushing hot water, and then perhaps go for a swim in the icy river below, drying off on the wonderful river-side beach. A gentle climb through the woods past with a spectacular waterfalls, across an old, wooden suspension bridge and through a short section of forest path and we reach Dobhan. Above Dobhan, the Bhudi Gandaki River descends in an impressive series of steep rapids. Here, our trail climbs high above the river to descend through the river calms. We cross the river on a long, new suspension bridge and climb high on stone steps before coming into our camp below Jagat, the entrance to the Manaslu Conservation National Park. It is worth wandering around this beautiful, paved village, where proud villagers have recorded how much they contributed to these paving schemes.
Day 10: Jagat to Philim 1570m
After descending a long series of stone steps back down to the river from Jagat, we climb on wonderful stone steps along a terraced hill-side to the small hamlet of Saguleri, from where we can see the impressive Shringi Himal 7187 meters high. We pass through the charming, paved village of Sirdibas. We Cross the river again on a long, high suspension bridge at Ghata Khola, the path splits, with the right-hand branch heading off towards the Ganesh Himal. Our route continues upstream, and again we have a steep climb to reach Philim. In the afternoon free to wash at the dharapani (tap) across the path from camp, explore the interesting upper village and gompa, or sit and enjoy the afternoon at camp.
Day 11: Philim to Deng 1865m
We cross the river first at a narrow section of the gorge on a new suspension bridge, ascend gradually along a wide hillside through an open forest, and then cross the river two more times in the next two hours on small, very badly maintained bridges, Nepali style. The first bridge sits at the intersection to Tsum valley, a remote valley leading to Tibet. After trekking through dense woods for over an hour, we pass the cold campsite of Pewa on the river, and after another hour we leave the gorge and climb briefly to the small village of Deng. Deng is the start of the lower Nubri region called Kutang, where the people are ethnically Tibetan but speak a different dialect than the people of upper Nubri where the people are pure Tibetans. We have views of Lumbo Himal to the rear, as well as Lapuchen and Dwijen Himals. It's worth a visit to the upper floor of their house above us, perhaps for a glass of local 'chang', or Tibetan beer and for a chat around the hearth.
Day 12: Deng to Ghap 2165m
We switch back steeply up to the small, poor village of Lana, where the women usually have their looms out. After climbing through lovely woods of pine and crossing a small bridge, we reach Bihi Phedi, where there is a good shop and views of Kutang Himal, and start to see mani stones (prayers etched onto wayside rocks, particularly mani stones with pictures of gods and goddesses), a sure sign that we are entering another of the tiny Tibetan footholds that mark the high Himalayan places. We have three or four hours of trekking ahead of us, twice crossing the large Bhudi Gandaki River and twice over smaller tributary streams, staying mostly high with many ascents and descents as we walk through the gorge, all the time enjoying spectacular views. Eventually we reach Ghap, where we set up camp for the night at the house of some wonderful villagers.
Day 13: Ghap to Lho 3180m
Today is a wonderful trekking day; soon after leaving Ghap, we ascend for an hour through a dense, cool forest, crossing the Bhudi Gandaki River once on a wooden bridge, climb on smooth, stone steps and eventually arrive at Namrung, at 2540 meters at the Tibetan-run lodge. As we gain altitude, we reach alpine territory and are treated to increasingly broad mountain views. Namrung village is the start of Nubri, the region of purely Tibetan inhabitants speaking a dialect of western Tibet. A few hours later, we reach the village of Lihi at 2840 meters, a substantial altitude gain. Lihi houses an old gompa, and is spread along the trail with its billowing fields of barley, guarded by 'bear watches'. We are climb gently now; soon we cross a large stream flowing down from the Lidanda Glaciers and reach the picturesque Tibetan village of Sho at 3000m, where we stop for lunch. After an hour we reach at Lho, where we are treated to breath-taking views of Manaslu itself. We set up camp in Lho, Sunset and sunrise from the campsite are wonderful, and the small Gompa.
Day 14: Lho to Sama Gaon (Ro) 3525m
Walking through the upper reaches of Lho, with the snowy peaks of Manaslu ahead of us in the distance, we pass the new gompa and then ascend through light forests next to a small river to reach the high, idyllic Tibetan settlement of Shayla, where the villagers are often out in the fields. Amazing mountain panoramas from here. Another few hours of trekking through classic alpine scenery leads us past Tibet grazing settlements, the trail to Pung Gyan Gompa off to the left, and eventually past checkered fields of barley and potato to Sama Gaon. Sama The people settled here from Tibet over 500 years ago. The Tibetan villages in this region of Manalsu have distinctive entrance gates (manes), and they maintain an active trade with their co-religionists in Tibet over several high passes nearby. If the weather is good, you will see the village women weaving wool from Tibet into gowns - which are then traded back to Tibet. Take the afternoon to hike up to the old gompa settlement above town, and to wander the streets of the fascinating Sama Gaon village.
Day 15: Samagaon to Samdo 3850m
Another day of incredible mountain views, past craggy woods of Himalayan Birch, during the walk up to Samdo, an easy three hours away. En route we pas the long mani walls at Kermo Kharka, after which we spot the entrance chorten of Samdo high on a bluff. We descend back to the Bhudi Gandaki and cross a small bridge before another short climb to the 'kane' entrance of Samdo. There is a small home gompa in a house mid-village which we can visit during our last village, a puja being held by several of the reincarnated lamas living in the Samdo. We're at the high and the wind can be chilling in the evenings, so tuck into the little tea-house next door to our campsite for a cup of salt-butter tea to warm you up!
Day 16: Acclimatization in Samdo
Another rest and acclimatization day in this wonderful spot below Manaslu, which towers above us. We recommend a hike up the valley directly in back of Samdo, heading towards one of their passes to Tibet, for amazing mountain panoramas. En route, we'll pass many lovely, slated herding settlements. The prayer flags strung up on a distant hill, sending messages out into the Himalaya make a good stopping point before returning to lively Samdo.
Day 17: Samdo to Dharamshala (Larkya Phedi) 4460m
We leave Samdo on the old trade route towards Tibet, cross a bridge, and climb through the ruins of Larkya bazaar, one of the trade markets that flourished years back. After about three hours of climbing past glaciers, with increasingly awe-inspiring panoramas, we come to the campsite at Dharamsala, the high camp for the Larkya La pass, where we have lunch and gaze out at the views. You'll really feel the altitude and the cold here, so enjoy a more leisurely afternoon and keep warm. We'll have an early dinner in preparation for our pass crossing tomorrow.
Day 18: Dharamshala / Cross Larkya La (4930m) to Bhimtang 3590m
After a short climb above the campsite, we reach the ablation valley on the North side of the Larkya Glaciers where we have views of Cho Danda and then of Larkya-La. We continue across the moraines of the glacier, often through the snow, making a gradual ascent which becomes steeper only in the last section to the pass, which should take us about four hours to crest. The views from the top of the pass are wonderful; a mountain panorama of Himlung Himal, Cheo Himal, Kangguru and the huge Annapurna II, equally stunning from both sides. After hanging our Tibetan prayer flags, get ready for a steep, often slippery drop to a trail following the glacial moraine. We'll lunch below the pass on smooth rocks before continuing the descent, still three hours to go to our campsite. A boulder-strewn descent brings us, finally, to Bhimtang. It's all worthwhile now.
Day 19: Bhimtang to Tilje 2300m
A chilly but beautiful morning, as the sun hits the peaks around us long before the campsite. After leaving the grazing fields of Bhimtang, we cross a boulder-strewn river and head down through open forests of brilliantly blooming rhododendron, past the Kharka below Bhimtang. We'll lunch at a small tea-house, and then continue along the rocky river-bed and sliding hill-sides to several small, green villages, a sign that we've reached lower altitudes. Eventually, after a somewhat long but very scenic day, we reach the large village of Tilje village which are a mix of Manangis (of Tibetan descent) and Chettris (Hindus), so have a unique architecture and culture, and eat mix foods - Dal Bhat, buckwheat dhiro, tsampa and Tibetan salt-tea.
Day 20: Tilje to Tal 1680m
It's an easy trekking day following the Dudh Khola through bamboo forests down to Dharapani, an atmospheric Tibetan village with prayer flags fluttering in the wind, stopping en route at the gompa in Thongje on the old Annapurna trail. Trekking south on the main Annapurna Circuit trail, we soon arrive at a long suspension bridge over which we cross the Marsyangdi River to reach the small village of Karte, re-crossing it soon afterwards. We continue along a high, winding, stunning cliff-side trail past several small teahouses at Khorte, and then switch backing down the steep trail before crossing the Marsyangdi river yet again. Before us, we see the wide plain and waterfall at scenic Tal, the last village of the Lower Manang region.
Day 21: Tal to Syange. Drive to Besisahar
Continuing along the riverside, we have a quick ascent to the entrance 'kane' of Tal, and after cresting the small hump, we descend steeply past the small teahouses at Sattale, loosing even more altitude as we continue down through the lush forest to the river and cross another suspension bridge leading to Chamje. Chamje is an atmospheric, 'wild west' village of traditional-style teahouses, often packed with saddled local horses. From here the road-building is full-on, so we'll continue as far as we can get, and hop in our jeeps. But before then, one more steep descent through the woods, looking across the river to large waterfalls, leads us to the lovely cobbled village of Jagat, situated on a shelf which juts into the precipitous Marsyangdi valley. Descending steeply, we arrive at the small, somewhat wild-looking village of Syange. We'll have a bumpy drive to Besisahar where we set up our last campsite and get ready for our last night's party with the staff and porters in the evening!
Day 22: Drive to Kathmandu
It's a hot, five (plus) hour drive back to Kathmandu, so we'll try to head off early and stop for lunch en route back. It is a different world back in the Nepali hills, and the gentle light sends us on our way back to the bustle of Nepal's capital. Finally, back at the Kathmandu Guest house, and a real shower. A celebration is definitely in order tonight!
Day 23: Free day in Kathmandu for shopping and other activities.
Day 24: Transfer to Airport for departure.
Cost: Please contact us.
Minimum Group size: 2
Season: April - October
Departure date: as per your convenience.
- Completely camping trekking with full board i.e. breakfast, lunch and dinner.
- Twin sharing tented accommodation and camping equipments and Kitchen equipments
- Mattress, Toilet tent, shower, Dinning tent, dinning tables, chairs etc.
- All entrance fees
- All necessary transportations
- Airport pick up/drops on private vehicles
- First aid kits
- All government taxes and official charges.
- Kathmandu valley Guided city tour
- 4 nights hotel in Kathmandu with breakfast
- Guide, Assistant Guide, Cook, assistant cook and Porters
- Accidental and medical Insurance of Nepalese staffs
- Road transport/ one way flight as well.
- Personal equipment such as sleeping bags/ jackets (if you do not have we can arrange within US $1.00/day for two items).
- Lunch & Dinner in Kathmandu
- Rescue/ emergence and insurance cost
- Beverage and hard drinks and alcohol
- Nepal entry visa fee and airport tax during the departure.
- Personal equipments and personal expenses.
- Tips (usually people can keep US $2/day in total for tips and donation which is good amount)
- In case of natural calamities i.e. political unrest, cancellation of flight due to weather, landslides etc the extra charge should be born by themselves.
Please click on small photo to have larger view.