Annapurna Base Camp Trek

Annapurna base camp trekking is one of the major trekking routes in Annapurna region. It is also known as Annapurna Sanctuary Trekking. The Annapurna Base Camp Trek is the wildest short trek in Nepal. About two-thirds of the trekkers in Nepal visit the Annapurna region because the area is easily accessible, has good number of tea houses and guest houses, and treks here offer good scenery of both high mountains and lowland villages.

ABC Trekking is a moderate nature trek that starts at Phedi, about an hour drive from Pokhara, which leads to the base camp (4130m) of Mt. Annapurna, one of the most magnificent peaks in the world. The trail takes you through different villages of Gurungs, Magars and Thakalis who are one of the ethnic communities of Nepal. They have also been recruited by British Army as Gorkha Soldiers for their bravery and loyalty. These communities have a unique culture and religion which makes you surprise. You can experience how friendly and open hearted these people are, and you can get a taste of their lifestyle by staying in their houses and knowing their way of living and their culture and tradition.

The hike continues through dense rhododendron forest with towering snowy peaks in the background. Annapurna Conservation Area protects varieties of flora and fauna from sub tropical to pine, fir, rich oak and blooming colorful rhododendron on the way. This region is also the home to many wildlife like pika, blue sheep, snow leopards, tigers, Himalayan thar and varieties of birds including multi–colored Impheyan, koklas and blood pheasants.

The return walk is even more interesting as the trek winds around different ridges towards Ghorepani, where you witness breathtaking views of an early morning sunrise, where a red shaft of light peeps through glistening gaps over the snow capped peaks of the Annapurna & Dhaulagiri Mountains. The sceneries seen throughout this trek grace the landscape of the Himalayas, where imagination defines the beauty of nature as an experience that can never be forgotten.

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrival in Kathmandu
The snow-capped mountain peaks welcome you at first as you enter Kathmandu. The mind blowing panoramic view lets you know you are above Kathmandu valley. A representative and driver from our office will meet you at the airport and escort you to your hotel. The representative will help you check into your designated hotel. At the hotel you will be briefed about your daily activities.

Day 2: Sightseeing of Kathmandu Valley
Kathmandu Valley is one of the richest cities of Nepal, both historically and culturally. It has always been a popular destination for tourists. The city presents a wonderful mix of Hinduism, Buddhism and Western influence in the Valley. Western Influence because Kathmandu used to be hippies favorite place in the world during hippie era. Patan and Bhaktapur, its two major neighboring cities bear immense historical, cultural and religious significances. There will be a half day guided tour to the famous and biggest Hindu shrine of Pashupatinath, the largest Buddhist stupa in Nepal Boudhanath, the 15th century Palace of 55 windows and Swoyambhunath.

Day 3: Fly to Pokhara & drive to Phedi, trek to Dhampus (1,700m)
Fly to Pokhara from Kathmandu, which will reach in 30 minutes. During your flight, you will be sightseeing the most magnificent and amazing view of Manaslu and the Annapurna mountain range. In Pokhara, a bus will take you to Phedi. From there onward, begins your trekking in Annapurna mountain range. As you climb uphill, you will bask in the splendor of nature and your trails become more adventurous. Finally, after walking for 3 hours, you encounter several roadside teashops, and at last your trail leads to the Gurung village of Dhampus. Here concludes the trip for the day.

Day 4: Trek to Landrung (1,550m)
The path narrows as it goes round a ridge. On proceeding further, the trek passes through Pothana and reaches Deorali. At this point, you find yourself high up on the East side of the Modi Khola flowing down the Annapurna Circuit Sanctuary surrounded by complete ambience of nature. Continue with your trekking for four hours until you reach picturesque Gurung settlement of Landrung. Magnificent views of Annapurna South and Hiunchuli instill more excitement into your adventure spirit.

Day 5: Trek to Chomrong (2,100m)
From Landrung, you trek along the mountain path of stone steps, pass through a village, cross a suspension bridge and then you come across dense forest of bamboo. Finding yourself in complete isolation, the serenity of nature can be quite an experience. After trekking for a while, you approach teahouses at Jhinu, where you can rest and enjoy a drink or snacks. Thereafter, you begin your trek to the north, descending Daaulu and after having walked for five hours Chomrong is reached. From Chomrong, you can have prominent and mesmerizing view of Machhapuchhare. There are many wooden lodges and at Chomrong, you can get accommodation and food.

Day 6: Trek to Himalaya hotel (2,850m)
After crossing Chomrong Khola, you continue trekking along steep stone steps. On your trails, you bypass rhododendron-covered ridge path, mountainous terrains and forests of bamboo. As you savor awe-inspiring views of Annapurna mountain ranges and Machhapuchhare, you gather more energy and enthusiasm to explore further. During the five hours trek, you cross Modi Khola, pass through Khuldigar, Bamboo and Dovan and finally reach Himalaya Hotel where you wrap up your trip for the day.

Day 7: Rest day
Complete rest throughout the day. Planning for forthcoming trips and getting accustomed to your trekking destinations.

Day 8: Trek to Machhapuchhare base camp (3,700m)
The next destination is to reach Machhapuchhare base camp. You ascend and descend as your route opens up new trails. On climbing steeply for a while, you approach Hinku Cave. This course follows zigzag paths of stones. After walking for 3 to 4 hours, you enter the Annapurna circuit Sanctuary, a huge amphitheater enclosed by a solid wall of snow-capped peaks which include Annapurna I, II, III and IV and the fish tail spire of Machhapuchhare. Several lodges and Annapurna inns are spotted at Deorali and Bagar. Finally, you will find yourself at Machhapuchhare Base Camp, a grassy moraine platform. You can rest at the lodges.

Day 9: Trek to Annapurna south base camp (4,130m)
On hiking the Annapurna circuit trail for 2 hours, you descend a small ridge branching out from the mountain pass to mountainside with widespread terraced fields showcasing tranquil pastures and green fertile farming land. As you reach Annapurna South Base Camp, observe awesome picturesque landscapes, majestic panoramic view of snow-capped mountainous peaks and varied Himalayan cultural settings tucked beneath the southern slopes of the Annapurna massif. Thereafter, you head back down to Himalaya Hotel.

Day 10: Trek to Chomrong (2,100m)
As you continue climbing along the forested ridge located in the surrounding area of chains of cloud-snaring hills, a slope covered with grass 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 separating 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 hours, you reach Chomrong. From Chomrong you can have prominent and mesmerizing view of Machhapuchhare. There are many wooden lodges at Chomrong which provide accommodation and food.

Day 11: Trek to Ghandrunk (1,940m)
From Chomrong, we take an alternative route back to Pokhara via Ghorepani. As you pass through flatland, forests and terraced fields, a suspension bridge comes your way. After crossing the suspension bridge over Khumnu Khola, you enter beautiful village of Ghandruk. You get to see unique culture, tradition and custom of Gurung community. Ghandruk offers excellent views of Annapurna South, Gangapurna, Annapurna III and Machhapuchhare. It accommodates several hotels and teahouses. Camping in its terraced fields can be very exciting and adventurous.

Day 12: Trek to Tadapani (2,410m)
Leaving the terraced fields of Ghandruk, we walk along the zigzag path on a steep slope. As you ascend steeply, you pass through dense rhododendron forest to Tadapani which is an ideal point to glimpse heavenly sight of Annapurna South, Hiunchuli and Machhapuchhare. After having walked for 3 hours, you finally reach Deorali.

Day 13: Trek to Ghorepani (2,880m)
From Deorali, you proceed further along steep trails. Nature spreads exotic sight of majestic snow-capped mountain peaks and green vegetation. You climb through rhododendron forest to Deorali (3,100m) and reach a village and cultivated fields. Continue walking for 3 hours and finally you will find yourself in Ghorepani. Ghorepani also houses lodges to provide food and accommodation to travelers.

Day 14: Trek to Nayapul, drive to Pokhara
After enjoying the mesmerizing sight of Dhaulagiri, Tukuche Peak and other Himalayan giants from the popular view point of Poon Hill (3,195m), you leave Ghorepani and march ahead for Nayapul. You further descend towards Birethanti. Birethanti lies stretched beside the Modi River and has resourceful town. On your trails of stone steps, you pass through dense forest and a small village of Ulleri. From Ulleri, a very steep section with 3767 steps leads down to Hilley on the Bhurungdi Khola. After walking for about forty minutes from Birethanti, you come to the main road. Drive to Pokhara. Evening at leisure.

Day 15: Fly to Kathmandu
From Pokhara you can either fly (about 30 mins) or drive (about 7 hours) to Kathmandu.

Day 16: Depart Kathmandu
Transfer to the airport.

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Miami Tibetan Studies Abroad Progarm
Dept. of Anthropology
Miami University