- Country: Nepal
- Trip grade: Moderate
- Destination: Nepal, Asia
- Activities: Trekking
- Accommodation: Hotel and Guesthouses
- Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
- Maximum altitude: 4131 meter
- Group size: Min - 1
- Best Season: Spring & Autumn
Stand and gape at some of the world’s alpine diamonds in an amphitheater of dramatic peaks. This geographical wonder stirs your emotions to the core…
This is a combo trip where the toughness of Himalayan hiking is made easy as we walk amidst regal scenery and green hamlets that makes the trek a joy as we head down to the Annapurna Base Camp, also well known as the ‘Annapurna Sanctuary’’ trek.
The Annapurna Base Camp trek is a wonderful integration of culture with an interesting mix of communities that include the Gurungs and Magar ethnic communities. We haul up at some of the pretty villages for interactions with the local folks who give us a lot of insights into their rich traditions and lifestyles. This cultural experience adds more zest into our trekking holidays. The high peaks of the Annapurna range as we reach base camp is a lifetime memory of the stunning views we get of Mt. Annapurna 1, Annapurna III at 7555m, Machhapuchre at 6999m, Annapurna south 7219m, Hiunchuli at 6441m and several more famous peaks leave us awestruck at the might of these mountains.
Our trailblazing hikes include a trip to Poonhill for the experience of a mesmerising sunrise over the Annapurna ranges which gives us enthralling views of a wide range of famous peaks that include: Gangapurna at 7454m, Machhapuchre at 6999m, Lamjung himal at 6986m, the Dhaulagiri at 8167m and Manaslu peak at 8156m – an early morning hike to this prime spot will be well worth the effort with lifetime memorable views to savour.
Our trek starts from Nayapul after we stroll around the beautiful valley of lakes that we know as Pokhara. We hike through lively villages with cultivated terraces and observe the local folks singing romantic local bards going about happily with their agricultural chores; attired in red saris and cows splattered with vermilion on the foreheads. Cows are revered animals in Nepal. The trails and sublime rhododendron forests are home to some of the rarest birds on the planet. The trek is a wonderful experience that blends the natural beauty of nature, and a friendly cultural welcome you will rarely find anywhere else. Nepal Climbing Adventure will be your escort for a special holiday of this kind…
Some highlights of this trip that would steal your heart:
• Despite the Everest Base Camp considered to be one of the best trails on the planet, you will find the Annapurna Base Camp in a league of its own. Relish stunning landscapes and lush greenery hereabouts; and mingling with the local people in the Annapurna region and experiencing its unique culture will give you memories never to be forgotten.
• Hike into the Annapurna amphitheater, a physical sanctum of stunning peaks that can be viewed 360 degrees where you will get to marvel at these geographical gems that surround you in spectacular splendour, leaving you breathless, virtually.
• Your journey begins with a whirlwind mountain flight from Kathmandu to the ‘City of Lakes’ – Pokhara, giving you close-up experiences of some of the most beautiful mountains in the world, which you will tread in a short while.
• It would be much appreciated for you to know that the company which operates your treks and serves you do so in line with values that provides respectful, safe and conscious working conditions not only in Nepal, but on all trips across the borders into Bhutan, Tibet and India.
A detailed itinerary that gets you set for the trip:
Day 01: Arrival in Kathmandu (1,300m/4,264ft)
If it’s a clear day when you are flying into Kathmandu, then your tour begins right from the skies itself. The sights from the windows of our jet shows us glimmering snow-capped mountain peaks spread out down below us, giving us the first thrills of our just begun vacation, sparking off a whole reaction of unforgettable experiences that stay with us for some time to come. As soon as your plane hits the tarmac of Tribhuwan International Airport, a Nepal Climbing Adventure office representative and driver will be on standby to meet and greet you at the airport and escort you to your hotel. The rep will help you check into your designated hotel, and after going to our rooms and refreshing ourselves we will be briefed about our daily activities. The rest of your time is free to move around the neighborhood and get familiar with your surroundings. In the evening we will meet our senior trek guide who will brief the group about details related to our trek. Your first overnight in the ancient city of temples, probably the most in the world.
Day 02: Drive to Pokhara (827m/2,700ft) by a tourist coach
After an early morning breakfast, we journey to the delightful lake town of Pokhara by a tourist vehicle (approximately 7 hours). Pokhara is a wonderful setting amid some lovely lakes beneath the snow-capped peaks of the Annapurna range, making it an ideal place to relax and mull over what lies ahead. This captivating junction is part of a once lively trade route extending between India and Tibet. This is the land of Magars and Gurungs – hardworking farmers and heroic warriors who have earned world-wide fame as Gurkha soldiers. The ethnic Thakalis, another important local community hereabouts, are known for their entrepreneurship. This afternoon you’ll have your trek briefing and preparation, but depending on your arrival time, there may be time to hire a small boat for a quick paddle on the lake. There are also plenty of lakeside cafes where you can put your feet up and enjoy international cuisine, while the main street is full of shops and stalls selling a wide range of Nepali and Tibetan souvenirs. If you need to hire some extra trekking gear, then there are numerous shops available offering everything below the mountains. Overnight in this thrilling city of lakes.
Day 03: Drive to Nayapul and trek to Ulleri (2050 m/6725 ft): 5-6 hours trek
At 8091 metres, Annapurna 1 is one of the highest mountains on earth. Its surrounding Sister Mountains are equally imposing and create splendid panoramas from any viewpoint. This trek covers a large variety of terrain, from lowland pastures and peaceful villages to powerful glaciers and breathtaking mountain views.
Amid the rugged mountain scenery, you stay in mountain communities and meet friendly local hill people as they go about their daily chores. The journey is not only visually superb but also gives you an opportunity to learn about local cultures. Along the way, see thundering waterfalls of melted snow, you cross icy rivers and reward yourself with a soak in natural hot springs. This is an hour-long drive (remember driving times are always approximate in Asia – patience is your closest friend!) which brings you to Nayapul where you start your trek. Gear up and follow the Bhurungi Khola to Thikhedhunga, trek through farmland before a steep ascent to reach Ulleri. The Ulleri Hill with thousands of steps and boulders continually go upward and this will really be a test of your stamina. We reach Ulleri by late afternoon and do an overnight here.
Day 04: Trek to Ghorepani (2,750 m/ 9,020 ft): 4 - 5 hours trek
After breakfast, we clamber up to Ghorepani village via stone stairs. While ascending we admire the impressive scenery as Annapurna South looms large, playing hide n seek from our view. We pass dancing waterfalls, tiny villages, and several tea-houses before reaching Ghorepani. We haul up at the higher part of Ghorepani village which offers heartwarming views of the surrounding mountains including Annapurna South and Nilgiri mountains. The village has small shops that sell local products such as handbags and crafts. This quaint village also has some good wi-fi. We bunk out for the night at this pretty village.
Day 05: Trek to Tadapani (2,700m/8,860ft) with a visit to Poon Hill (3,210m/10,529ft): 6 - 7 hours trek
Today is a wonderful day because we get onto Poon Hill - an emblem of the Annapurna region. We climb the steep trail to the viewpoint of Poon Hill at (3200mtrs). The efforts will be rewarded with fantastic views of Machhapuchre, Dhaulagiri, Nilgiri, and the Annapurnas. After taking photos and having some coffee or tea or hot chocolate, we return back to Ghorepani. After breakfast, we head east and climb a nearby ridge. We descend through rhododendron forest, pass by superb waterfalls along the way and reach Tadapani for an overnight with all meals inclusive.
Day 06: Trek to Chhomrong (2170m/7120ft): 6 hours trek
As we plod upwards along the forested ridge residing in the vicinity of chains of cloud-clustered hills, a grass-covered slope opens up leading to a course descending across a rock-strewn area to the riverbed of Kali Gandaki. Kali Gandaki is the world’s deepest river gorge of great bio-geographical significance regarded as demarcating Eastern and Western avifauna. The trail up the Modi Khola passes through dense forests of rhododendron and bamboo across Annapurna mountain range. After trekking for 5-6 hours, we reach Chhomrong. From Chhomrong we can get some outstanding views of Machhapuchhare. There are many chalet-style wooden lodges at Chhomrong which provide accommodation and food…and for dessert its delicious apple pie…we bunk out for the night down here.
Day 07: Trek to Dovan [2670m/8760 ft] – approx hiking 5 hours trek
We begin today with some stone stepping through the Chomrong Khola, and continue hiking along steep stone steps.
We can count the steps as we hike to get our minds of the steep climb. On our trails, we bypass rhododendron-covered ridge paths, mountainous terrains and forests of bamboo. As we savor awe-inspiring views of Annapurna mountain ranges and Machhapuchhare, we gather more energy and enthusiasm to explore further. During our Five-hour walking, we cross Modi Khola, pass through Khuldigar, Bamboo and Dovan and finally reach Himalaya Hotel where we wrap up our trip for the day with some hot tea/coffee and some snacks before supper and finally, a welcome sleep for the night.
Day 08: Trek to Machhapuchhre Base Camp (3700m/12135ft): 6-7 hours trek
Today, we climb to Deurali through rhododendron and bamboo forest. Passing through Himalaya Hotel, we continue up the narrow valley to Deurali. Sticking to the west bank of the Modi River, we then enter an open valley near Machhapuchhre Base Camp. We follow the valley trail in a steady climb. The trail sticks to a rocky cliff and is sometimes steep. We walk on a somewhat flat path for a while before ascending to Machhapurchre Base Camp. From hereabouts, we get admirable views of Mt. Hiunchuli, Annapurna South, Annapurna I, Annapurna III, Gandharvachuli and the Gangapurna mountains. This is where we haul up for the night at Machhapuchhre Base Camp.
Day 09: Trek to Annapurna Base Camp (4,130m/13,545ft) – approx 3-4 hours trek
After breakfast, we begin our day by ascending further from Machhapuchhre Base Camp to our ultimate destination: Annapurna Base Camp, the highest point of your trek. You will know how your legs and your lungs are feeling by the time you get to base camp. You may remain at Machhapuchhre Base Camp or stay at Annapurna Base Camp for the night. The views from both base camps are gripping to the bone – all the tough climbing you do to get here is worth its weight in gold!
Day 10: Trek down to Bamboo (2310m/7578ft) - Approx 5-6 hours trek
Leaving base camp, the trail descends on a stone staircase and crosses the Chhomrong Khola on a swaying suspension bridge, then climbs out of the side valley. High above the Modi Khola on the west bank, the trail passes through the tiny settlement of Tilicho in forests of bamboo, rhododendron and oak. Climbing further on a rocky trail (beware of the stinging nettles) you reach three hotels at Sinuwa, at 2350m. Climb in rhododendron forests to Kuldi, at 2520m. Descend a long, steep stone staircase into deep bamboo and rhododendron forests. It is then only a short distance on a muddy trail to Bamboo Lodge (2670m.).
Day 11: Trek to Jhinu Danda (1760m/5770 ft): 5 - 6 hours trek
After breakfast, we hike down to Jhinu danda for lunch. From this village it is a steep descent down to the Modi Khola valley. The trail then descends to Jhinu Danda, where we will be resting for the night. Once we have passed Khuldighar there is an experimental sheep farm, from this farm, the trail continues through rhododendron and bamboo fields. From Chomrong the trail descends very steeply to the Jhinu hot spring, and this is where we can freak out with a warm bath in this natural hot springs. They say it sooths a tired body. Overnight at a lodge.
Day 12: Trek to Nayapul, Drive to Pokhara, 5 hours trek & one hour drive
Today we wrap up our trek at Nayapul followed by a short drive back to Pokhara. After reaching Pokhara, we check into our hotel, refresh with some drinks and snacks, maybe even have a bath; We also have options to do some boating on the tranquil Fewa Lake. We then will have a relaxing afternoon where we can simply chill out with some cold beers. Overnight at our hotel down by the waterline.
Day 13: Drive from Pokhara to Kathmandu by a tourist bus – 6-7 hours dive
It’s a scenic cruise in a luxury bus down to Kathmandu through some lovely colourful rural country down a breezy highway in the morning. We reach Kathmandu and get back to our hotel in the city. We can then spend the day taking a much needed rest or catch up on some last minute shopping. Either way, we mark the end of our successful trip with a delicious farewell dinner hosted by Nepal Climbing Adventure where we can share our experiences of the trek before flying back home the next day. Overnight in Kathmandu.
Day 14: Drive to the Airport to head back to that lovely place we call ‘home’’
After breakfast, our rep and office vehicle will be on standby at our hotel to transfer us to the airport for our connecting flight home. Serving you was a wonderful joy and pleasure, we at Nepal Climbing Adventure will cherish the bonds of our relationship created over the time you spent with us and we thank you for choosing us as your travel partner and for visiting this amazing country Nepal. This homely trek in the beautiful Annapurna region will give you lifetime memories of a vacation worth its weight for all the miles you travelled from home. Adios friends! Till we meet again.
What is included?
- All airport and hotel transfers
- Welcome and farewell dinner
- Accommodation and meals during the whole of the trek.
- 2 nights in a 3 star hotel in Kathmandu
- All necessary paper works and permits
- Government and local taxes
- An experienced English speaking trekking guide, assistant trek guide(4 trekkers: 1 assistant guide), porters(2 trekkers: 1 porter) including their salary, insurance, food, lodging and all equipment.
- A comprehensive medical kit
What is not included?
- Nepal Visa fee(bring small denomination cash USD and two passport photographs)
- International airfare
- Excess baggage charges
- Extra night accommodation apart from the schedule due to any reasons
- Lunch and evening meals in Kathmandu and in case of early return than the scheduled itinerary
- Private vehicle from Kathmandu and back
- Travel and rescue insurance
- Personal expenses
- Tips for travel guides or porters
Vital Frequently Asked Questions [FAQs] for treks in Nepal
• Are you a licensed trekking agency?
Yes, we are. We have been organizing Tours, Treks and Expeditions for our valued clients that go beyond two decades. We’ve enjoyed nothing more than this, right to the hilt.
• Do the guides speak English and have first aid training?
All of the guides are specialists in their work and speak fluent English; most are born in the areas they escort trekkers to and have many years of experience in guiding foreign travelers. It's a compulsory requirement that they are trained in first aid and also carry a first aid kit with them during the trek.
• How big are the groups?
We always do our best to team up a small group of likeminded people to give them a memorable and insightful travel experience, coupled with an invaluable opportunity to interact with each other in the true spirit that comes with adventure. Our trek groups generally comprises of maximum 12 members. We need a minimum of 2 participants to run our fixed departure dates. For private trips, no minimum or maximum numbers apply.
• Are permits included in the price of the trek?
Yes. All of the necessary permits for your trek are included in the price and will be arranged for you prior to your trek. For certain restricted regions (like Manaslu and Makalu), you'll need to have a full day in Kathmandu prior to your trek as your trek operator will need your passport for the permit registration.
• Do you arrange private treks?
Yes, we do. If you would like to travel independently, or with your friends, families & colleagues you are invited to choose any of the trips at a timeframe that best suits you for any number of people (minimum 1 & maximum 100 at a time). The costs for private trips are generally fixed on the basis of group size, trek area, duration and trek style, and is negotiable. We also arrange TREKS FOR A SINGLE WOMAN. If by any chance, none of our fixed group departure dates work for you and you do not have anyone to accompany you, you can still be able to make your preferred trip with us. There is absolutely nothing to worry about if you want to go solo. We assign local guide, porters etc who you can trust your life with.
• Do you provide any equipment while trekking?
On all our Camping treks we provide all the tents, sometimes dome tents, sometimes sturdy A frames and normally people share one tent between two; a foam mattress each; all the cutlery and utensils, cooking pots, stoves; candles/kerosene lantern, tables and stools, kitchen tent, dining tent and toilet tent; all the main meals while trekking but not snacks. On Tea house treks there isn’t really a necessity to provide any equipment.
But you are provided a duffel bag if you don’t have one and a down jacket if you haven’t flown in with your own. This is loaned to you and must be returned when the trek is done.
• How difficult are the treks?
Classifying the difficulty of a trek is like walking a thin red-line, as it depends on your fitness and experience hiking on the mountains. In the Himalaya, a trek's difficulty depends on the steepness of the trail, the general altitude, and duration of the trek. Generally, the higher you go the more difficult the trek becomes. For most treks in the lower foothills (Ghorepani, Poonhill, Ghandruk, and Pikey Peak), it's fairly moderate trekking, although some days will be more challenging than others. For higher-altitude treks (i.e. Everest Base Camp, Gokyo, Annapurna Circuit and Nar Phu), the treks become more challenging as you get going over 5,000m passes with longer days. If you’re an avid walker and enjoy hiking, then there’s no better adventure than trekking.
• How long do we walk each day?
Much of our trekking ventures are classified into THREE different categories according to the level of difficulty. Soft Adventure treks are only about a week to 10 days in duration. They generally don't go above 4000 meter and each day, you can expect to be walking for around 4 – 5 hours. While moderate to fairly challenging treks are longer treks that go right into high mountain country. Physically quite tiring, these involve approx 6-8 hours trekking along rocky ridges of high Himalayan peaks. Arduous treks are longer treks that go far beyond the normal haunts of trekkers and tourists. Physically challenging, these may involve 7-9 hours trekking and likely to include unfavorable weather conditions and activities that are not only physically challenging, but also tax the mind. These trips are not for greenhorns.
• What is exactly 'teahouse' trekking?
Teahouse trekking refers to staying at a small local lodge or mountain hut each night of your trek. The lodges are basic but pretty cosy; enough to shelter you from the bitter mountain winds. They consist of 5-10 rooms with a common area used for eating and hanging out. Most treks in Nepal are teahouse treks where the lodges are run by members of the local community. Bunking out at these teahouses in some of the harshest territories on earth will give you a true sense of what life is in the wild.
• What do we mean by FOT trek?
On FOT or a ‘Fully Organized Trek’, all meals and sleeping arrangements will be fully organized by the support crew. FOTs are also known as CAMPING TREKS. On camping treks you will be sleeping in tents. A trekking crew consists of one sirdar, one cook and kitchen crew, Sherpa assistants and porters depending on the size of the group. Under the leadership of the sirdar (local trek leader), the crew consists of several Sherpa assistants who will ensure you don't take the wrong path, a cook and kitchen crew to keep you well fed with delicious and nutritious meals and the porters to transport all the gear from camp to camp.
Our main aim is to make the trek as hassle-free and enjoyable as possible. The ratio of both Sherpa guides and kitchen crew to group members is generally 1:4 and the ratio of porters to group members is around 3:1 at the beginning of the trek, but this decreases as food is eaten and loads become smaller. For bathroom facilities we carry a toilet tent. Your camping staffs dig a deep hole in the ground for excrement and cover the hole with soil after nature’s call is done. Camping treks are more expensive than teahouse treks. These treks are generally operated in remote restricted alpine zones that go above the tree-lines. Camping treks can also be used as options for teahouse treks throughout the Himalaya to enjoy the true spirit of adventure!
• What is security like during trekking?
Security for our clients is always a foremost priority for us. All our guides and other support crew are carefully chosen for your trips. Our guides hold licenses issued by the Nepal Government. They are very honest and reliable. But we would also advise you to take care of your own personal belongings. If you are on ‘camping treks’ please do not leave your bags unattended at any time for your own safety. Take your main bag inside the tent once you reach campsite. At night, all bags and belongings are kept in the middle of the tent. Your guide assigns a Sherpa on a rotation basis to guard the campsite throughout the night. If you are on a ‘Tea house or GAP trek’ arrangement, you will be sleeping in local teahouses. You need to take sensible precautions yourself at all times. Never leave your baggage unattended and keep your lodge room locked when you go out.
• What happens if I fall ill during the trek?
If by chance you fall ill during your trek, the first course of action depends on what's wrong with you. If it's altitude sickness, moving to lower altitudes and taking altitude medication will solve most cases; if it's quite severe, your guide will arrange for an emergency evacuation by helicopter (be sure that emergency helicopter rescue is covered in your travel insurance). If you have a stomach sickness, bug or any other types of food or water-related illnesses, your guide will have medication on hand for most common illnesses.
• What type of food is served during a trek?
On CAMPING TREKs we provide three delicious, plentiful and nutritious meals daily with a tasty mix of local and western dishes. Your day starts with a king-size breakfast consisting of a choice of porridge, muesli and cereals followed by omelet, fried or scrambled eggs with ‘chapattis’ [rounded bread made from wheat] or multigrain-bread. Also included are seasonal fresh fruits. Lunch is generally a selection of organic salad, cooked vegetable dishes, pasta and traditional breads. Dinner is a truly hearty 3 course meal - soup, followed by a variety of vegetables, meat, and rice and pasta dishes and completed with a simple dessert [which may include a finger-licking crusty apple pie].
Ironically, some of the best apple pies in the country are found on these mountains and not in thamel, Asia’s hub for backpackers; as many tourists would assume. Tea and coffee are also provided at all meals. We use as much fresh organic produce as possible available at some of the villages we hike through and special diets are regularly catered for. The trek leaders maintain very tight controls on health and hygiene in the kitchen with respect to general cleanliness and food preparation and also within the group with respect to personal hygiene.
All foods are well cooked and vegetables are treated by potassium permanganate or iodine. We only serve Boiled water for drinking. Antiseptic soaps and potassium or iodine treated water are provided for washing. Special dietary requirements can always be catered for. On Tea House treks we provide standard breakfast, lunch and three course dinner, tea or coffee is also included with each meal. Your guide will help with menu selection and ensure that you get the best value meals possible. Although the food is usually plentiful and delicious, you should be aware that the menu is not normally extensive. Most teahouses offer a variety of rice and soupy noodle dishes, as well as soup and seasonal vegetables. A variety of cereals, bread and egg dishes are generally available for breakfast. There will also be plenty of snacks available such as biscuits, chocolate and soft drinks and in some areas you will find fresh fruit in season. You can buy packaged water (bottled mineral water) from local lodges and shop en route or you can also ask your guide to fill your water bottle with boiled water and treat it with water purification pills. Although its held that gluttony is a sin, nevertheless, we ensure our trekking guests are well fed in as much as they can digest to cope with the arduous trails and the tough elevations.
• Do I need to carry my own gear?
You'll carry your daily essentials (sunblock, water, hat, light jacket, and camera) but your porter will carry the bulk of your gear, such as extra clothing and overnight basics. Porters are especially helpful for longer treks where you'll be carrying more gear. For shorter treks (2-3 days), you may opt just to have a guide if you're comfortable carrying your own gear, but hiring a porter is a great way to support the local economy and is quite affordable. Its also the safest thing to do when you’re hiking on the biggest and most rugged mountains on planet earth.
• How much could porters carry?
Porters typically carry up to 30 kgs max. (To ensure they're not overloaded). For fragile items, such as cameras, it's still best to carry these items yourself. If you have more than 15 kg., please carry the extra weight in your day pack. In the commercial trade, when transporting goods and supplies up into the high mountains, some porters carry up to 100 kgs and get paid less than a fair wage provided by some so-called responsible trekking companies. However, doing things like this weighs on the conscience and we totally avoid such unfair situations.
We know the risk that comes with neglecting our porters and follow all mandatory guidelines as stipulated by the IPPG international porters association.
• What is the overnight accommodation like?
In cities like Kathmandu or Lhasa, accommodation will be in hotels of your preference. We have a pool of hotels that ranges from luxury deluxe to budget hotels. While on a trek accommodation will depend on the trek style. If you are taking a camping trip then you will be sleeping in tents. Whilst we endeavor to stay in the best possible accommodation along the way, you should be aware that most teahouses, particularly in the smaller villages, are pretty basic but cosy enough to protect you from the harsh elements. The bedrooms are usually very small, the shared bathroom facilities are often outside and meals are served in a communal dining hall. Although simple, the teahouses do provide shelter and warmth and are normally run by friendly local families. Tea house treks are less expensive then Camping treks and are largely suitable for small groups. Usually, during busy seasons if private rooms in smaller villages are fully occupied you might have to bunk out in a dormitory. But then this is what adventure is all about.
• Can we change the itinerary?
Depending on the prevailing situation, you can modify it to some extent after consulting with your senior guide. However, the date of trek completion should always coincide with the original itinerary. You should keep in mind that this is an adventure trip into some of the most remote regions in the world, where many unforeseen circumstances may contribute to the need for a change in itinerary. In such cases, we or your guide will suggest the best alternative similar to your original itinerary.
• Is tipping included and if not, how much should I budget?
Tips are always appreciated by your support team after the trip. The amount depends on your budget and appreciation of their work. Guiding on some of the most risky trails on earth is a tough job and your crew always makes sure they lead from the front. Some trekkers give 10% of the total tour cost as tips. The hat is passed around and the whole group contributes. Most trekkers happily provide tips with big hearts. The choice is yours if you feel they’ve been worth it.