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Annapurna Circuit Guided Trek

Trek though the annapurna national park from Nayapul to Muktinath

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A cultural & physical journey through the Annapurna National Park, from Nayapul in the south to Muktinath in the north. Taking in the best of the Annapurna circuit with the additions of some lesser-known trails recommended by local guides from Pokhara. A diversity of terrain & culture, from lush green foothills with pretty terraces & picturesque Gurkha villages to barren, Tibet- like landscape, though deep forested gorges, Buddhist villages & temples. Passing close by two of the planets tallest peaks, Dhauulagiri, Annapurna 1 & seven summits over 7000m & Annapurna 2,3,4, Annapurna South & Gangapurna, Machhapuchhre & Tuckuche Peak.

14 night itinerary

Day 1: Arrival in Kathmandu

Arrival in Kathmandu, early evening welcome & initial briefing.

Accommodation:

3* Hotel, B&B

Day 2 Free day to explore Kathmandu:

Free day to explore Kathmandu, the city is crowded and chaotic yet utterly charming. The confusing narrow lanes of Thamel, rickshaws making their way through the streets and the strong smell of street food are experiences in themselves & it is a fabulous area to explore. “Must do” places to see also include: Boudhanath Stupa, Durbur Square, Pashupatinath & Swayabhunath Temples.

Accommodation:

3* Hotel, B&B

Day 3 Travel to Pokhara:

After breakfast we depart by taxi to the airport to take a short flight (25 mins) to Pokhara which is the second largest city in Nepal. The city feels very different to Kathmandu, with a much gentler pace of life; calm & easy going. The small city is situated by the beautiful Lake Phewa & is an entry point into the great Annapurna mountain range. We will take a taxi from the airport to the hotel & arrive early afternoon, the rest of the day will be spent getting organized for our trek, sorting out our kit & obtaining our trekking permits. Late afternoon we’ll have the last trek briefing & meet our Nepali guide.

Accommodation:

3* Hotel, B&B

Day 4 Nayapul to Ghandruk:

After an early breakfast, we take a jeep transfer to Nayapul & the start of our trek. The journey takes approximately 2 hours. A great day ahead awaits as we take the road through the villages of Nayapul & Birethanti, once our permits are checked we make our way into the Modi valley & at Chimrong we start our ascent - steeply at times, via beautifully crafted stone steps through charming small hillside communities & terraced farmland. Once we reach the hillside village of Ghandruk (1940m) with its fabulous views of Annapurna South & Machhapuchhre, we find our Tea House accommodation for the night.

Daily stats:

Distance: 15km Height gain: +1230m Descent: -300m

Accommodation:

Teahouse, half board

Day 5 Ghandruk to Dobato:

Starting early to catch the beautiful morning light, we take the steep stone steps out of the village to Bhaisi Kharka & on to Tadapani (2630m), where we will take a well-earned rest, tea & lunch stop. From here we leave the main path & take the route less travelled, and climb steadily to the hillside settlement of Meshar (2969m). On & up we go, taking the ridge via Isharu (3137m) on to our Community Lodge accommodation at Dobato (3349m).

Daily stats:

Distance: 18km Height gain: +1450m Descent: -200m

Accommodation:

Teahouse, half board

Day 6 Dobato to Khopra Danda:

Early morning option to ascent to Muldai (3637m) to catch the amazing sunrise over the Annapurna & Dhauulagiri, we return to our accommodation for breakfast & our kit. Setting out for the day along a lush grassy ridge flanked by quaint herders' huts we then cross a low col, descending through rhododendron forest to a picturesque river (2600m) before climbing - again amongst rhododendrons, to Chistibung (3020m) and a well-deserved lunch stop for refreshments. Refreshed, we make our final ascent to Khopra Danda & our Community Lodge for the night at 3660m. Khopra Danda sits high on a majestic ridge with outstanding views of Dhauulagiri (8167m), Annapurna 1 (8091m) & seven summits over 7000m, Annapurna 2,3,4, Annapurna South & Gangapurna, Machhapuchhre & Tuckuche Peak.

Daily stats:

Distance: 16km Height gain: +1050m Descent: -900m

Accommodation:

Community lodge, half board

Day 7 Day trek to Khayar lake:

Optional day walk from Khopra ridge towards pilgrimage site of Khayer Lake (4025m) where the views of are truly superb. The ridge walk is tough, but the views are more than worth the effort. As we have two guides, for those of you not wanting to walk all the way to the lake, we can organise a shorter walk from Khopra or alternately you may decide to use this as a rest day to discover the natural beauty of the area.

Daily stats:

Distance: 12km Height gain: +365m Descent: -20m

Accommodation:

Community lodge, half board

Day 8 Khopra Danda to Narchyang:

An early start to see the fabulous sunrise at Khopra Danda, breakfast and then we are on our way on our long & steep descent through magnificent temperate forest, on a gem of a trail less travelled, into the Jomsom valley with fabulous views of the Dhauulagiri massif. Today we need to make sure we have all the provisions we need as there is little or nothing on the trail until we reach our rest stop for the night at Narchyang (1510m).

Daily stats:

Distance: 19km Height gain: +200m Descent: -2150m

Accommodation:

Teahouse, half board

Day 9 Narchyang to Kalapani:

Making our way up the beautiful valley, above the river Kali Gandaki we pass fields of orange, lemon and banana trees and maize on the steep verdant hillside. We pass the beautiful Rupse Chhahara waterfall and then, after crossing a wooden bridge, arrive at the village of Rukse/Rupse (1,560m). We climb through steep ground to Pairothapla and then criss-cross from one side of the river to the other by way of suspension bridges. We arrive at the small settlement of Kalapani (2530m) and our lodge for the night.

Daily stats:

Distance: 20km Height gain: +1050m Descent: -200m

Accommodation:

Teahouse, half board

Day 10 Kalapani to Thinigaon:

A long but relatively easy day, with only 500m of height gain over 18 kilometres. We make our way up the Jomsom valley on a dirt road to the right of the Kali Gandaki river. On route we pass by the architecturally fascinating village of Kobang (2,580m), where the houses here are accessed from a partially enclosed central tunnel designed to give protection from the valley’s strong gusting winds. Once we reach the Thinigaon (2840m) we are at our lodge for the night.

Daily stats:

Distance: 18km Height gain: +150m Descent: -0m

Accommodation:

Teahouse, half board

Day 11 Thinigaon to Muktinath:

We are now entering a very different environment & the gateway to the Mustang region of Nepal. Setting off early we trek in the dusty & sandy, shaligram-filled riverbed with fabulous views of the nearby peaks of Dhaulagiri, Tukuche, and Nilgiri. We then take an alternative trail to avoid the touristy jeep trail to Jharkot and Muktinath and have the opportunity to visit visiting a local Bonpo Monastery. Bonpo is an ancient pre-Buddhist religion, so it is a rare and special chance to learn about this ancient animist religion while taking a stunning alternate route to Muktinath & our rest stop for the night.

Visiting the Muktinath Temple & Pilgrimage Site is a must after arrival. It is one of the worlds highest temples which is sacred for both Hindu & Buddhists and has fabulous, far reaching views towards the Jomsom valley & the Dhauulagiri range.

Daily stats:

Distance: 18km Height gain: +1040m Descent: -200m

Accommodation:

Teahouse, half board

Day 12 Travel to Pokhara:

After breakfast we take a jeep ride to Jomsom. We then take a short flight (30 mins) back to beautiful Pokhara. We then have the afternoon to relax & reflect on our fabulous trekking & cultural experience.

Accommodation:

3* Hotel, B&B

Day 13 Free day to explore Pokhara:

A day to rest & reflect on your journey through the Annapurna National Park. It’s also a great opportunity to visit the attractions of Pokhara. You can take a boat onto the lake, or visit the Tal Barahi Temple island. The Mountain Museum has exhibits on the history of mountaineering and the people of Nepal or perhaps you just want to relax lakeside & browse the shops.

Accommodation:

3 * Hotel, B&B

Day 14: Travel back to Kathmandu:

Breakfast & morning short flight (25 mins) to Kathmandu, followed by an afternoon to rest and relax.

Accommodation:

3* Hotel, B&B

Day 15: Departure

Breakfast, farewell & departure