Manaslu Circuit Trek
Manaslu Tsum Valley Trek – a classic trek into the remote part of Nepal Himalayas
Manaslu Circuit Trek – Why is it called a classic Trek in Nepal ?
Manaslu Circuit trek incorporates all the features of a classic trek in Nepal Himalayas, as it entails trekking through remote villages hardly seen by the outside world. Add a few more days and go on a Manaslu Tsum Valley Trek and this trek becomes a perfect example of a classic trek. The Manaslu Tsum Valley Trek gives one an oppurtunity where one can get a glimpse of the mixed culture of Nubri People of Tibetan descent and picture perfect Himalayan scenery.
Manaslu Tsum Valley Trek is a classic Trek that takes you through the lowlands of the Budi Gandhaki gorge with terraced paddy fields and white water falls, over long suspension bridges to the snow bound Larkya Pass to the North, close to the border with Tibet
Manaslu Circuit Trek circumvates the world’s eighth highest mountain in the world, Mt.Manaslu(8163m). Manaslu Circuit Trek Route used to be the ancient salt trading route to Tibet. The Manaslu Region was closed to foreign Nationals till the year 1991 but is now open to trekkers on a limited basis. Manaslu Tsum Valley Trek route is a little remote as compared to Everest Base Camp Trek or the Annapurna Trek routes & this trek climbs to a little over 5000m at the Larkya La pass, but one needs to be physically fit to do this trek .
Which part of Nepal Himalayas does the Manaslu Region fall ?
Manaslu Circuit Trek Route lies to the east of Ganesh Himal, west of Great Annapurna Range, south of the Tibetan plateau in Mansiri Region of Nepal Himalaya.
What is the Total distance of the Manslu Circuit Trek ?
Manaslu Circuit Trek is a captivating fourteen days trek in the remote part of Nepal Himalayas. The Trek route passes through the Manaslu National Park covering a total distance of 177Km. Manaslu Circuit Trek starts at Arughat and ends in Besisahar, with an average of 18Km walking distance per day.
Manaslu Circuit Trek- is it a Tea House Trek or a Camping Trek ?
Manaslu Circuit Trek is a tea house trek with accommodation in lodges run by local families. These lodges are very basic with two beds in a room with a common washroom and restroom room. These lodges can fit about twenty trekkers at a time. Local Nepal Food are available in these Trekkers Huts viz Rice, Dal and Curry. But there are fewer lodges in the Tsum Valley Manaslu Circuit Trek Route not like in the Annapurna or the Everest Region.
Manaslu Circuit Trek – what to expect ?
Manaslu Circuit trek route passes through Sub-Himalayan foothills to the semi arid region of Larkya Pass. Larkya La is one of the longest pass in Nepal Himalayas, situated at an elevation of 5106m above mean sea level. The Larkya La Pass is located between Dharamsala and Bhimtang and is the highest point in the Manaslu Circuit Trek.
Looking down from Larkya Pass one can get a clear view of the terrain that you had come up but the best views are on the west after you cross over the Larkya Pass. A great glacial circle comes into view. A glacial circle created by Cheo Himal, Himlung Himal, Nemjung Himal, Gyaji Kang and Kang Guru, looking down on the crystal clear streams from the glaciers, while on the horizon the Annapurna II stands tall. This view alone makes the trek worthwhile.
Permits required for the Manaslu Circuit Trek
- Manaslu Circuit Trek is a restricted area trek therefore you will need a restricted area permit to trek in this area and which will be issued to a local company.
- Restricted area Permit will be issued to a group of two trekkers and above only.
- Over and above the restricted area permit one will also need Annapurna Conservation Area Permit(ACAP)
- Manaslu Conservation Area Permit (MCAP).
Can this Trek be customized by adding Tsum Valley into the Itinerary ?
Add a few more days to the regular Itineray and you get the best of the Tsum Valley Manaslu Circuit Trek. Without a trek into the Tsum Valley the Manaslu Circuit trek will be incomplete. The Manslu Tsum Valley Trek is a tough trail, challenging enough to leave a mark in your memory and in your consciousness . A trail that may hurt you and even break you but a trail that may change you. A trail that will give you something to remember for a life time.
When is the best time to proceed on the Manaslu Circuit Trek ?
April to May is the best time for the Manaslu Circuit Trek when the temperature is mild and the sky clear. This is also the best time to trek in these area as the valley floors will be filled with flowering plants and and the mountain sides with colorful Rhododendron flowers. September to November is also a perfect time to go on the Manslu Circuit Trek, when the skies are crystal clear after the monsoon rain. A perfect time to view the mountain range.
Before you pack up your travelling bags and put on your hiking boots, please remember, the Manslu Circuit trek is a strenuous Trek through remote part of Nepal Himalayas very close to the border with Tibet and a physical fitness is compulsary.
NOTE: One can also reduce a day by driving from Arughat to Seti Khola. Jeep services are available and the track is little bumpy. This way you can reduce the total distance by 13Km and gain a day.
TRIP FACTS :
- Minimum No. Of Participants : 2 Persons.
- Type of Trek : Tea House / Lodge.
- Highest point : 4460m.
- Trail grade : Strenuous.
- Total duration : 14 Days.
- Starting Point : Kathmandu.
- Ending Point : Pokhara.
- Best Season : February to May and September to December.
- Climate: Days are normally warm. Nights can at times be (general) very cold and in winter even below the freezing point.Monsoon showers in summer (heaviest in July, August) and sometimes even in spring and autumn.
- Trek availability: Private treks only for minimum 2 persons on request.No group departures available.
- Customized private Treks can also be arranged for a minimum of two persons on request on a date of your choice.
Manaslu Circuit Trek Detailed Itinerary:
Day 1: Kathmandu to Soti Khola (700m /8 hrs).
The Manaslu Circuit Trek begins with a drive from Kathmandu to Soti Khola an eight hours drive. One can take a direct bus at 6 am and 8 am, from Gongabu Bus Park, Kathmandu to Arughat and a local jeep to Sotikhola from Arughat. Overnight at one of the teahouse in Soti Khola.
Day 2: Soti Khola to Maccha Khola (900m/23Km/ 6 hrs).
The Trekking trail to Maccha Khola is narrow and rocky and at places one will need to stand aside for the mule trains to pass by, lest you be pushed to the river bed. Trek through beautiful sal forest cross over a couple of rivers and encounter waterfalls and tall cliffs and trek through villages inhabited by the Gurung and Ghale tribes of Nepal until you reach Nyali Khola. Once you leave behind Nyali Khola it is a couple of descending and ascending until you climb to the top of a stream at Maccha Khola with few Tea Houses and some lodges. Despite the uneven road, you will have the most amazing walk on the first day of this trek. The stunning countryside views will keep you engaged throughout the trail.
Day 3: Maccha Khola to Jagat (1340m/23Km/ 8 hrs).
The trek to Jagat starts with a twisting trail besides the banks of the Buri Ghandaki through Sal forest inhabitaed by Macacs and Langurs. As you leave the forest behind, you will enter the Gurung village of Khorlabeshi where you will be greeted by Shepherds clad in their typical smoke browned dress called the Bakhu. On walking further, you will reach Tatopani (hot water spring) cross the new suspension bridge over Bhuri Gandaki river trek through a landslide and climb over a ridge to reach Dovan. Once out of Dovan walk across a land slip the trail drops down to the banks of the Buri Ghandaki cross a wooden bridge on the left side and a steady climb of three hours will bring you to Jagat. A small flagstoned Gurung village Jagat is the entrance to the restricted area of Nepal. On entering the village one will need to produce your trekking permits at the check post there. From Jagat you will be trekking in the restricted region of Nepal.
Day 4: Jagat to Pewa (1600m/20Km/ 6 hrs).
Trek to Salleri on an uneven narrow rocky path and descend to Sirdibas. The sound of the gongs, chanting of the prayers by the monks from the many Buddhist Monasteries and the fluttering of the innumerable prayers flags welcomes you into the village of Sirdibas. Climb further on to Phillim where you will have your permits checked, continue to trek along the west bank of the river where the trail is filled with sculptured boulders made by the river over a long period of time and this part of the trail looks beautiful because of this.
Once you leave the river trek through the lush green Rhododendron and pine forest with overhanging rocks and towering peaks above. This is the highlight of this part of the trek. Trek further on and walk across a bridge over the Siyar River until you reach a junction. The Trek route to the right goes to Tsum Valley take the left track to Pewa.
On proceeding further you cross the Siyar Khola bridge and reach a junction where the trail separates to Tsum valley on your right.Finally, you will reach Pewa, the final destination of the day. There are only two teahouses in the region where they serve basic food and a basic room for the night.
Day 5: Pewa to Namrung (2630m/21Km/ 6 hrs).
After breakfast start the trek of the day. Walk across the bamboo forest to reach Deng from here ascend the winding trail, and cross a suspension bridge over the Gandhaki River and start the climb to Rana(1980m) and Bihi Phedi. The trail then proceeds to Ghap through several landslide zones and then a one hour climb up the Buri Ghandaki Valley to Namrung. Namrung has some of the best teahouses, a restaurant, and rest houses with modern cappuccinos and WiFi.on the Manaslu Circuit Trek.
Day 6: Namrung to Lho (2957m/10Km/ 4 hrs).
The Population who inhabit this place are known as Nubri people and are influenced by Tibetan culture and lifestyle therefore one can assume that these people follow Buddhism. Walk past several mani walls, lush terraces of wheat and houses through Barsam or Banjam to enter Rhododendron, oak and Pine forest before climbing upto Lihi. Walk through a Kani (that is archway) to enter closely packed houses and wheat fields of Lihi (2900m). Trtek through wooded canyon cross the Hinan Khola on a cantilever bridghe and slowly climb upto Sho(2960m). You will start getting spectacular views of Manaslu(8163m), Manaslu North(7157m and Naike Peak(5515m) from here. Walking across the rocky hillside you are finally in Lho. Lho is a big village with a sizable population and a Buddhist Monastery or Gumpa. From Lho catch the stunning views of Manaslu (8163m) and Manaslu North (7157m).
Day 7: Lho to Samagaon (3540m / 7Km/4 hrs).
Trek to Samagaon a short trek this is to acclimitize you as you will be gaining altitude . The picturesque view of Mt. Manaslu will accompany you as you slowly trek across an easy trail through pine and rhododendron forest heavily laden with moss and cross crystal clear streams to Shyapla. A one hour easy trek from Shyapla, you will reach Sama Gaon. Mountain views disaapear once inside the village but the yak pastures and typical settlements will attract you. Samagaon is the principal village of the Nubri people which has a Buddhist Monastery or a Gumpa, shops, a health post, a helipad and telephone booths.
Day 8: Acclimatization Day. Side trip to Pungyen Gompa, Manaslu Basecamp or Birendra Tal.
One can trek for two hours to Pungyen Gumpa which lies to the east of Nubri Valley or hike upto Birendra Tal (3450m) a glacial lake and to Manaslu Base Camp(4400m) which lies to the North of Samagaon.
Day 9: Sama Gaon to Samdo (3865m/16Km/ 4 hrs).
Trek to Samdo is a short trek as you are at high altitude and needs to get acclimitized. Trek through yak pastures up a broad valley with long mani walls. Cross over the Buri Gandhaki on a wooden bridge, from here the tree line vanishes and the climb starts. Climb to a ridge to reach white Kani, a very picturesque village dedicated to yak herding.
Once at Samdo, you can explore the nearby villages or you can hike to Samdo Peak. The Larkya La trail is on the left above the valley. You can also see the main track for Tibet over the Larjyang La forming slopes on the Larkya La trail.
Day 10: Samdo to Dharamsala/Larkya Phedi (4460m/12Km/4 hrs).
Trek to Dharamsala also known as Larkya Phedi is short but adventurous. As you are high altitude do take your time while trekking as your body needs to get acclimitized. There are wonderful Himalayan Vistas to enjoy while you hike to Dharamsala..
Day 11:Dharamasala – Larkye La Pass(5016m) – Bimthang(3590m /25Km/10 hrs).
The Trek to Bhimthang is challenging and a long one too, as one will have to cross the Larkya La Pass(5016m) highest point on the trek. The day starts early as you will need to cross the pass before noon. Climb gently besides the moraine to the top of the ridge and descend gently to a lake then climb up to the ridge at 4690m. Cross the moraine and descend a little to a couple of lakes and then start the climb up to Larkya la Pass. Once at the Pass witness the stunning views of Himlung Himal(7126m) near Tibet, Cheo Himal(6820m), Gyaji Kung(7030m), Kang Guru (6981m) and Annapurna II (7937m) in the Annapurna Range. A three hours trek downhill through scree and moranines with views of the snow clad mountains, huge icefall, glaciers, Pongkar Tal between the Pongkar and Salpudanda Glaciers finally brings you to Bhimthang for an overnight stay.
Day 12: Bimthang to Tilje(2300m/26Km/6 hrs).
This is the final day you will be walking on the trails of Manaslu region. On climbing downhill, you will walk through the lush forests full of flora and fauna including rhododendron bushes.
Walking back across the Dudh Khola, you will walk to Karche for lunch. In the next hour, you will see many signs of a glacial flood, with tree trunks smashed and banks undermined, the track becoming quite rough. And, the trail drops to Gurung Goa, the first real village since Samdo.
The valley becomes more agricultural and lush as you pass fields and copses of oak and rhododendron, staying on the north (true right) bank until Tilije. From there, you will continue your stroll towards Dharapani and continue to Tal.
Day 13: Trek Tilje to Sirichaur (1150m/6Hrs).
Day 14: Trek Dharapani to Besisahar(8Km/3Hrs)and drive to Kathmandu (1300m/8 hrs). If you feel you are done with trekking than you can take a jeep from Dharapani to Besi Sahar(35Km/3Hrs). From Besisahar you can take a bus ride back to Kathmandu or drive to Pokhara(103Km). You can also take a bus back to Kathmandu from Tal. End of the Manaslu Circuit Trek.
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- COSTS : US$1100/person
- Manaslu Trekking Permit for 2 weeks(US$ 120 per person/ Extra as applicable).
- Manaslu and Annapurna Park Fees(US$ 45 per person/Extra as applicable).
- Indian Nationals kindly enquire within for quotes in IRupees
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Trek Services Include:
- Trek guide; porter/s to carry luggage(1 porter for 2 persons);
- Lodge accommodation in twin share rooms;
- Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner during the period of the Trek;
- Contribution to guide transport;
- Guide/porter insurance costs;
- Transport by bus from Kathmandu to Arughat and from Sirichar back to Kathmandu;
- Any services in Kathmandu, hotel/meals, etc.
- Airport pickup/drop in Kathmandu.
- Nepal visa fees;
- Manaslu trekking permit and national park fees
- Sleeping bags (can be hired @ $1 per night in Kathmandu);
- Personal clothing/equipment;
- Client insurance of any kind;
- Cost of evacuation (if any);
- Bottled/alcoholic drinks;
- Tea/coffee – other than at breakfast;
- Expenses of personal nature.
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NEPAL TOURIST VISA
- Nepal visa is readily available on arrival at the International Airport in Kathmandu and all other entry points to Nepal.
- 2 passport photos will be required.
- Single Entry visa: US$ 30 per visa (valid for 60 days).
- Multiple Entry visa: US$ 80 per visa (valid for 150 days).
- Nepal Visas are also available in all Nepalese Embassies and Consulates.
- Visa is not required for Indian Nationals to travel inside Nepal
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Note: The above itinerary is a sample, intended to give you a general idea of the likely trip schedule.Numerous factors such as weather,road conditions, physical ability of the participants etc. may dictate itinerary changes either before departure or while on the trail. We reserve the right to change this schedule in the interest of the trip participant’s safety, comfort and general well being.
Recommendations: The trek is a relatively difficult requiring good physical fitness. Few weeks training is advised and a physical fitness check-up is a must.
(All relevant Terms & Conditions apply).