Manaslu Circuit Trek takes you round of the beautiful mountain Mt. Manaslu (8163m) which is the 8th highest mountain in the world. You will be privileged to enter the recently opened, remote world of a people who eke out a living with the barest of essentials, but who nurture a deep and abiding faith. There is no better place to start this trek than from historic place of Nepal, Gorkha, home of King Prithvi Narayan Shah, who united Nepal into one. Even from this point, the views are stunning; Annapurna, Manaslu, Himalchuli, peak 29 and Ganesh Himal can be seen which dominates the skyline. The trail is winding and rice paddies of the Gurung and Magar villages along the Budhi Gandaki River valley soon give way to steep tracks cut into the cliffs of the river gorge. As you enter the zone of rain shadow of Manaslu close to the Tibetan border, the scenery changes dramatically. sparse forests decorated with colorful prayer flags, and many shrines proclaim the region’s as Tibetan Buddhist heritage. While the approach to Larkya La is demanding, your reward is incomparable views of Manaslu and Himlung Himal from the pass. A steep descent into rhododendron forests will then bring you to the Marshyangdi River Valley and the more traveled Annapurna trails, which lead back to the road let the world go by.
Welcome to Nepal! Ramdung Expedition representative will meet you at the airport and bring you to your hotel in Kathmandu. You can take a rest or if you are arriving earlier, can visit around the city. In the evening we will hold a briefing session regarding your trip and get to know your Nepali trekking companion. We’ll be happy to answer any question you may have. O/N Hotel.
Kathmandu valley is has fantastic UNESCO world heritages all around. Today after the breakfast, you’ll be visiting Boudhanath Stupa (the largest Buddhist shrines in the world), Pashupatinath (the holiest Hindu temple in the world), Durbar Squares (Palaces and fortresses of medieval Kings). The lifestyle of the Nepalese people, holy sadhus and monks, the fascinating history and the awe-inspiring architecture will be the highlight of this day. You can also buy or rent any needed gear or clothing from trekking/mountaineering shops. O/N Hotel (B)
Your Trekking staff will come at your Hotel in the early morning at around 8.00 am to pick you up, from there we’ll have an 6-7 hour depending upon road condition driving journey to Arughat. O/N Tea house (B,L,D)
After the morning breakfast, we’ll start our journey following the Budhi Gandaki River toward its point of origin. We’ll be passing the village of Morder and Simre to reach at Arkhat River. Then we ascend slowly towards Kyoropani. Camp today nears the confluence of Seti River - an ideal place to take a fresh water bath and clean the cloths. O/N Teahouse (B,L,D)
The trail star descending slowly until you climb again to mountain ridge to Almara. Then Pass forest trail to arrive at the village called Riden Gaon. The valley here cuts into another side of the river to enter Budhi Gandaki. Then at Lambesi, the trail follows down to the sandy river bed of Budhi Gandaki. O/N Camping (B,L,D)
After crossing Machha River and Khrola besi, there is a hot spring called "Tatopani". The trail follows forested area after towards Dovan. Below Dovan, there is a huge rapid at Budhi Gandaki. As the elevation increases, the rapids and the scenery undergoes a complete transformation. At Jagat, there is a police check-post where your trekking permit will be checked by the official and we stay overnight at Jagat. O/N Teahouse (B,L,D)
After ascending to a terraced hill of Saguleri and view of Sringi Himal (7177 m) can be seen from very near. Then we continue towards Sirish Gaon, Gandaki valley narrows from herewith soaring precipitous walls. O/N Teahouse (B,L,D)
We’ll be following the trail upstream of Deng River - a tiny village of 4 houses. We walk through a newly built rock tunnel from here, thus avoiding the traditional steep climb. At Ghap, the Tibetan culture begins with Mani stones and Chortens all around. O/N Teahouse (B,L,D)
After crossing the wooden bridge over the river Budhi Gandaki, we follow the path lined with houses that are interspersed with cultivated fields. At Namru, there is a police check post and again our permit and belonging will be checked if necessary. After Namru, across the Hinan river originating from Linda Glacier and continue on to Sho astonishing view of Naike peak, Manaslu north (7,774m) and Manaslu (8,150m) which are clearly visible if weather is clear. O/N Teahouse (B,L,D)
Walking along with upper reaches of Lho, with the view of snowy peaks Manaslu ahead of us, we pass the new gompa then ascend through light forests next to a small river to reach the Tibetan settlement village called Shyla, where the villagers are often out in their fields. Another few hours of trekking through classic alpine scenery leads us past Tibet grazing settlements, the train to Pung Gyan Gompa, and then Sama Gaon, or Ro, as the locals call it as. Sama Gaon sits in a bowl at the foot of the pastures leading to the high peaks, with mani walls, a small gompa and tightly packed rows of houses at the lower reaches of village, and the large gompa at the upper reaches. The people settled here from Tibet over 500 years ago, and the two gompas date from this time presents till today, both having unique architecture and built of pure wood. The Tibetan villages here have entrance gates which are very distinctive from the Tibetan ones, and they maintain an active trade with their co-religionists in Tibet (notice the Chinese brandy and beer on sale). If the weather is good, you will see the village women weaving wool (baal) from Tibet into gowns - which are then traded back to Tibet. Taxes were actually paid to the Dzongka Dzong (fortress) at the border of Tibet, a few days walk from Sama Gaon, as late as the 1940's until it was taken over by the Gorkas in the late 19th century. Later, after 1959, the region was home to Tibetan guerillas, and thus closed to trekking until 1992. At afternoon hike up to the gompa above town, and to wander the streets of the fascinating Sama Gaon village. O/N Teahouse (B,L,D)
Another day of incredible mountain views during the walk up to Samdo, an easy three hours trekking. En route we pass the long mani walls at Kermo Kharka, after which we spot the entrance chorten of Samdo high on a bluff. We descend back to the Bhudi Gandaki and cross a small bridge before another short climb to the 'kane' entrance of Samdo; look back down valley for great views. The villagers of Samdo came across the border from the village of Riu after 1959 ad and built their new village here, at their old herding settlement. Samdo village is a collection of houses and lodges at 3850 m, and most trekkers miss the heat of a week ago as we huddle around the stove and a wind from Tibet batters the windowpanes. Get out and take a walk around the village, where the inhabitants live an essentially Tibetan lifestyle, herding their yaks, sheep and goats, training their horses and planting barley. There is a small home Gompa in a house mid-village which we visited during our last village, a puja being held by several of the reincarnated lamas living in the Samdo. O/N Teahouse (B,L,D)
We spend one more day acclimatizing ourselves. It is recommended that your body acclimatizes to the high altitude and be adjusted for higher altitudes in the days to follow. O/N Teahouse (B,L,D)
We leave on the trade route to Tibet and climb through the ruins of Larkya bazaar, one of the trade markets that flourished years back. After two hours of climbing passing glaciers, with increasingly awe-inspiring panoramas, we come to the campsite at Dharamsala, where we have lunch and gaze out at the views. You'll really feel the altitude and the cold here, so enjoy a more leisurely afternoon and keep warm. We'll have an early dinner in preparation for our pass crossing tomorrow. O/N Teahouse (B,L,D)
After a short climb above the campsite, we reach the valley on the North side of the Larkya Glaciers where we have views of Cho Danda and Larkya Peak. We continue across the moraines of the glacier, making a gradual ascent which becomes steeper only in the last section to the pass, which take us about three hours to summit. From the pass, there are outstanding views of Himlung Himal, Cheo Himal, Kangguru and the huge mountain Annapurna II. If there is fresh snow, we may see Snow Leopard prints from the evening before; it's also blue sheep (Bharal) and Tibetan Snow Cock territory. The views from the top of the pass are truly astonishing. After hanging our Tibetan prayer flags, and yelling 'Ki ki so so lha gyalo' (may the Gods be victorious), get ready for a steep, ankle straining drop to a trail following the glacial moraine, very slippery if covered in snow so have your 'Yak tracks' ready if you've brought them, and definitely use trekking poles. It is a longer day then usual to our campsite at Bimtang, but to walk into these low pastures with the evening mist coming in and Manaslu; it's an experience of lifetime not to be missed. A boulder-strewn descent brings us, finally, to Bimtang, where the three sisters of the 'Three Sisters Hotel' are on hand with Himalayan chilled beer. O/N at Teahouse (B,L,D)
The route gets easier from today onwards. We start with a gentle climb through paddy fields towards the small Karcha La pass and descend through fig tree and rhododendron forests to Tilje. O/N at Teahouse (B,L,D)
Follow the trail downstream of Marshyangdi River, passing through the scattered villages to reach Tal village a settlement near Marshyangdi River for overnight stay. O/N at Lodge (B,L,D)
Ascending gently for 30 minutes and the trail runs gently down to Sanjee village, then trail goes up for 15 minutes to Gharmuu Phant. From here another 2 hours easy walk and 30 minutes up will take to the village of Bahundanda. O/N at lodge (B,L,D)
Today is the last day of our trek, and a hot, five hour walk through gentle, muted hills and colorful villages to Bhulbhule and Khudi, where we will meet our transport back to Besi Sahar. If the road isn't passable, we continue walk to until Besisahar. O/N at Lodge (B,L,D)
You’ll return to Kathmandu from Besisahar by Bus. You can spend time resting/buying souvenirs back to home. In the evening, we will host farewell dinner in traditional restaurant with cultural dance performances in celebration of your amazing trip. O/N Hotel (BD)
The journey within the mountains of Nepal comes to an end today! At last approximately 3 hours before our scheduled flight, a representative from Ramdung Expedition escorts us to the airport. On our way to home we will have plenty of time to plan our next adventure trip in the wonderful country of Nepal. (B)
Normally, we use following 3 star standard hotels in Kathmandu depending on availability in our trekking package.
Hotel Manang. Located in touristic hub, Thamel. www.hotelmanang.com
Hotel Utse. Located in touristic hub, Thamel. www.utsehotel.com
Hotel Manaslu. Located in Lazimpat near to Thamel area. www.hotelmanaslu.com
while on trek, the lodges are fairly basic but perfectly adequate for the mountain type service. Two people will be accommodated in each room mostly in twin beds with foam mattresses. If you prefer private accommodation, you can choose “single supplement” option. It is important to consider that some places in the trek do not have sufficient lodges and rooms; in this case you’ll have to share room. Some lodges now have showers (charged at $3-$5).
it is mandatory to have travel insurance for the trekking and please submit us photocopy before departure to mountain. Standard policies often only cover medical evacuation to 4000m so make sure it covers up to 6000m.
You are expect to trek about 5-7 hours covering distance of 10-15 kilometer daily depending on trial conditions and state of the weather. You’ll be traveling through wilderness, remote countryside and high elevations. Trekking with a guide is not only safer but also for more enjoyable experience. Our guides and porters are expert in Himalayan treks and have more than one decades of experience in average.
It is recommended that you prepare for trek with suitable training such as climbing hills/stairs, jogging, exercise and gym to improve your stamina few months prior to trek. The trek will be more enjoyable if you are fit.
MEALS AND DRINKS
There are plenty of excellent restaurants to serve food and drinks in Kathmandu such as Rum doodles, Fire & ice, La Dolce Vita, Ktoo Steak House, Everest Steak, New Orleans, Gaia etc. Breakfast is provided at your hotel every morning. It will cost $ 3-7 per meal depending on meals item chosen and restaurant.
While on trek, the lodges or teahouse provide good quality food in sufficient quantities. Meals whilst on trek are included in the package which is breakfast, lunch, dinner and hot drinks. You can choose your meal from hotel menus. Meals in lodges are varied ranging from traditional Nepalese daal bhaat to pizza, apple pie, steak, pasta and so on.
It is safer to drink bottled, boiled and filtered water. A reasonable variety of both hard and soft drinks are available in cities and while on trek. You can purify your own water if you carry a canteen or water bottle and iodine drops or tablets.
Spring starts from March until May where temperature fluctuated between 20°c to 30°c. From June to August is summer season which is also time of monsoon with occasional thunderstorms and hot temperatures. From late September to end November is autumn and is best for trekking activities. Winter is from late November to February.
The trek will have a wide range of temperatures depending on the elevation and time of the particular day. In the mountains between 1000m-3500m, the night generally will be cool around 5°C and during the day temperatures every so often rise to 20°c. At the higher altitudes, temperatures range from 15° to -15°c.
Tips is not mandatory but generally after hard work something extra is expected. We recommend a tip for guide and porter as at least $70 (more will be appreciated).
CLOTHING AND EQUIPMENT LIST
The following are what we recommend to bring as clothing and equipment needed for the trek. Trekking gear can be rented or purchased in Kathmandu at cheaper price; we can assist you with necessary arrangement. Except for your day pack, your luggage will be carried by porters. You’ll have strong and hospitable porter for two people. The weight limit for trek is 10-13kg per person. One porter can carry 20-25kg weight. Before the trek, you can store all your excess baggage in Kathmandu at hotel or at our office and take only which is required for the trek.
Light balaclava or warm fleece hat
Sun Hat or scarf
Cotton tees or thermals
Gloves for hand
Lightweight cotton pants (long)
Thin inner socks
Thick, warm wool hiking socks
Comfortable Trekking boots
Sleeping bag rated to -20
Trekking bag or duffel bag
Large plastic bags (keeping items dry inside trek bag)
Trekking poles (recommended, optional)
Lonely Planet Nepal: A guide book of Nepal.
Annapurna: A book by Reinhold Messner about his expedition experience in the dead zone of Annapurna.
Trekking in Nepal: Written by Stephen Bezruchka is an nice book for all treks with and bibliography of additional books.
Trekking and climbing in Nepal: Written by Steve Razzetti, this book gives comprehensive knowledge of major trekking trails and climbing peaks.
Nepal Handbook: By Kerry Morgan. Recommended specially for Kathmandu Valley sightseeing’s.
Trekking in the Nepal Himalaya: By Stan Armungton. This book has detailed trek descriptions including restricted areas of Mustang, Manaslu, Dolpo and kailash.
Into Thin Air: By Jon Krakaur. A personal account of the Mount Everest disaster.
Travelers Tales: Edited by Rajendra Khadka, Traveler’s Tales, and San Francisco.
Mustang: A lost kingdom by Michel Peissel.