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Annapurna Circuit


One of the world's greatest circuit treks
Stunning views of the Annapurna massif
Cross dramatic river gorges above the Marshyangdi river
Traverse the famous Thorung La pass
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Annapurna Thorung La
Prices from £1270 Prices From $1649 Prices From €1364
14 days

The classic circuit trek around the Annapurnas is an incredibly varied and exciting journey. Dramatic deep gorges, bleak high mountain passes, Buddhist temples, picturesque farming villages and at every turn a different view of the Annapurna summits.

To reach the start of the trek there is a long drive, first down the main Pokhara road then following the Marshyangdi River to Besisahar. The trek proper begins here, crossing and re-crossing the gorge carved by the Marshyangdi River on suspension bridges before you reach Manang, the largest village on the route.

An acclimatisation day is taken here to prepare for crossing the Thorung La pass which is the highest point of the trek at 5416m. From there you descend progressively with plenty of up and down along the way until you reach Jomsom.

We now end our Annapurna Circuit trek at Jomsom to avoid the last section of the circuit. A new road now follows very closely making it very noisy and dusty for trekkers. Instead you catch a spectacular mountain flight to Pokhara and then on to Kathmandu.

Additional days relaxing on the shores of Lake Pokhara can be arranged before you fly back to Kathmandu.

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1Arrival

We'll meet you at Kathmandu Airport and drive you out to your  hotel.  After you've checked in, we'll give you a briefing on the coming trek and double-check your gear.

Day 2Drive from Kathmandu to Besisahar, trek to Bhulbhule

We'll drive to Dumere via the Kathmandu-Pokhara highway, then follow the Marshyangdi River to Besisahar, a 6-hour trip overall.

This is where our trek really starts, working our way uphill past the village of Denauti before spending the night in Bhulbhule.

  • Elevation: From 1300 metres to 840 metres
Day 3From Bhulbhule to Jagat

We'll set off to the north from Bhulbhule, passing through deep gorges in the Marshyangdi Valley region. We'll cross a suspension bridge then cross through rice fields to Ngadi Village and its many shops and tea houses. We will also be able to see Manaslu most of the way.

After leaving Ngadi we'll head to Bahundanda, which means 'Brahmin Hill'. As you might expect, most of the inhabitants are of the Brahmin caste. From there we'll go uphill to the village of Hani Gaon. The path winds along the mountain through Syange, from where we get our first sight of the Annapurna Range, then follows the river for a way, only to turn into a steep cut into the cliffside. The river 200-300 metres below is quite a sight. 

At last, we'll descend to the stone village of Jagat for the evening.

  • Elevation: From 840 metres to 1300 metres
Day 4From Jagat to Bagarchap

Today's trail starts off downhill to the river, then on through lush jungle, before heading uphill again to another cliffside. We'll cross on another bridge and climb the steep path past Sattale and Tal.

On the way out of Tal the path becomes winding and quite rugged. It takes us past Karte and Dharapani before brining us out at Bagarchap for the evening.

  • Elevation: From 1300 metres to 2160 metres
Day 5From Bagarchap to Chame

We'll leave the Dudh Khola river behind and climb up into pine and oak forest today. We trek through the village of Dhanakyu just before coming to a beautiful waterfall.

When the steep incline levels out we'll find ourselves in a rhododendron forest that eventually gives way to pine. Next is a hamlet called Kotho which offers an excellent view of Annapurna II.

Finally we reach the gate to Chame, the administrative capital of the Manang District. Unlike many of the settlements in this region, Chame has almost all of what you'd expect from a modern city. Its hot springs are well worth a visit, if there is time.

  • Elevation: From 2160 metres to 2630 metres
Day 6From Chame to Pisang

We'll cross the Marshyangdi river via a large suspension bridge today. We'll move through planted fields to Teleku and then Bratang as the valley rounds out. Our path steepens as we ascend the south side of the valley and cross another high bridge.

Paungda Danda towers more than a kilometre and a half above the river at this point, making quite a sight. One more bridge takes us into Pisang for the night.

  • Elevation: From 2630 metres to 3190 metres
Day 7From Pisang to Manang

Day seven takes us along a steep ridge overlooking the Manang Valley with views of Tilicho Peak in the distance. We'll go down past Manang's small airstrip. Our next waypoint, Hongde, waits at the foot of Annapurna III.

Next we'll head through the wide Sabje Khola valley where we can see Annapurna III. A wooden bridge takes us to Mungji village. We'll travel along planted fields to Bryaga and its monastery, then down to Manang. We will have excellent views of most of the Annapurna range along the last leg of today's trek.

  • Elevation: From 3190 metres to 3520 metres
Day 8Acclimatisation Day at Manang

We will organise two separate acclimatisation excursions on day eight, both of which will help you grow accustomed to climbing to higher altitudes and reduce the risk of being debilitated by AMS. The first trek is to a local stupa, and the second to a wonderful scenic viewpoint.

Once back down in Manang, there will be plenty of time to enjoy some real Lavazza coffee and some of the excellent pastries available here.

  • Elevation: 3520 metres
Day 9From Manang to Letdar

We'll climb next to Tengi, just 120 metres above Manang. Leaving the Marshyangdi valley behind, we'll cross over into the Thorung Khola valley. Our next waypoint is the  village of Gunsang at 3960 metres, nestled among the scrub juniper and grasses that thrive at this altitude.

We'll follow a stream to Letdar, where we'll spend the night.

  • Elevation: From 3520 metres to 4250 metres
Day 10From Letdar to Thorung High Camp

Our path now crosses a ridge and takes a covered bridge across the stream we've been following. We'll ascend the right bank, follow a narrow and tricky trail up again, then back down to Thorung Phedi.

After a short break there it is 300 metres of steep climb to Thorung High Camp where we will prepare  to make the pass tomorrow.

  • Elevation: From 4250 metres to 4850 metres
Day 11From Thorung High Camp to Muktinath, via the Thorung La Pass

An early start to day eleven. Our path zig-zags along the mountainside for the steepest part of the ascent, then levels out for a good two hours of easier travel. The pass itself is decorated with many colourful prayer flags. As you might expect of a high mountain pass, the landscape is laid out below you in every direction, and is well worth a few pictures.

Now we have a fairly difficult 1600 metre descent to Dhaulagiri. Afterwards the terrain levels out to a grassy slope and easy travel along the Jhong Khola valley and to the temple and shrines of Muktinath itself.

  • Elevation:  From 4850 metres to 3800 metres
  • Highest point: 5416 metres (Thorung La Pass)
Day 12Descent from Muktinath to Jomsom

The hike down the Kali Gandaki valley is beautiful and dramatic. We'll pass Jharkot and Khingar villages and stick to the valley floor most of the way to Jomsom. Dhaulagiri and Nilgiri are visible most of the way.

Jomsom itself is quite large compared to most of the villages so far, and a great place to spend our last night of real trekking.

  • Elevation: From 3800 metres to 2713 metres
Day 13Flight from Jomsom to Kathmandu via Pokhara

Today we have two short flights, the first from Jomsom to Pokhara, then on to Kathmandu. Of course, we'll drive you back to your hotel as well.

Day 14Departure

We'll collect you from your hotel and take you to the airport at Kathmandu for your return flight, and see you safely on your way.

Congratulations! You've made it!

What's Included

Included
  • Meet and greet on arrival at Kathmandu Airport and transfer to your hotel
  • Hotel accommodation in Kathmandu before and after your trek on a bed & breakfast basis
  • Transfers from your hotel to and from your trek start point
  • Return domestic flights to Lukla / Pokhara (depending on actual trek itinerary)
  • All National Park fees
  • TIMS (Trekkers Information Management System) fees
  • Accommodation at standard teahouses on a room only basis
  • Service of our qualified mountain guides and porters
  • Insurance for all guides and porters
  • Prices are based on 2 people sharing hotel rooms and tealodges throughout
  • Transfer to Kathmandu airport
Excluded
  • International airfare and departure taxes
  • Items of a personal nature
  • Tips for the crew
  • Entry visa for Nepal
  • Personal trekking insurance (must cover trekking to 6000m)
  • Breakfast, lunch and dinner on the trek
  • Meals and drinks not specified

Availability

Last Updated September 30 2016
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Arrival: February 18 2018
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Price: £1335 $1730 €1364
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Price: £1335 $1730 €1364
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Frequently Asked Questions

Q1HOW DIFFICULT IS THE ANNAPURNA CIRCUIT TREK?

The Annapurna Circuit is considered moderately difficult. A good level of fitness is required as you will be walking long distances each day for two consecutive weeks. The toughest part of the circuit is going from Thorong Phedi to Thorong La pass (5,416m). There is a steep 45 minute climb at this altitude which will take the breath out of you. The views are worth it though!

Q2WHAT IS THE DISTANCE OF THE ANNAPURNA CIRCUIT TREK?

The rough distance of 14 day Annapurna Circuit itinerary is 100 miles or 160 kilometres. You will be trekking for a good 6-7 hours each day.

Q3WHAT IS THE SCENERY LIKE ON THE ANNAPURNA CIRCUIT TREK?

Simply stunning. The Annapurna Circuit is often considered to be not only the best trek in Nepal, but in the world. The reason for this is the stunning vistas and constant views of Annapurna summits. The circuit takes you through a number of climatic zones which take in rice paddy fields, sub-tropical forests, rural farmland and glacial zones. You will also see great views of some the worlds giants including Annapurna I, Annapurna Massif (I-IV), Manaslu (8,156 meters) and Dhaulagiri (8,176 meters).

Q4SHOULD I BOOK IN ADVANCE?

Yes. The Annapurna Circuit is an extremely popular trek and we therefore advise booking as early as possible. At least 1 month in advance is recommended.

Q5WHEN IS THE BEST TIME TO HIKE THE ANNAPURNA CIRCUIT TREK?

The two best seasons to trek this circuit are spring (March – May) and autumn (mid Sept to late November). These are the busiest times though and the trail can get crowded. If you want to avoid the crowds then there is the option to trek during winter, however, you will need to be fairly hardy as the temperatures can drop quite dramatically, particularly at night.

Q6WHEN IS THE BEST TIME TO HIKE THE ANNAPURNA CIRCUIT TREK?

The two best seasons to trek this circuit are spring (March – May) and autumn (mid Sept to late November). These are the busiest times though and the trail can get crowded. If you want to avoid the crowds then there is the option to trek during winter, however, you will need to be fairly hardy as the temperatures can drop quite dramatically, particularly at night.

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