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11 Days Annapurna circuit trek Itinerary

September 11, 2019

11 Days Annapurna circuit trek Itinerary

The 11 Days Annapurna circuit trek Itinerary is genuinely designed for those trekkers who are very short on time in Nepal but have been dreaming for many years to reach the high mountain region.

it is formally opened to travelers in 1949AD. For more than 6 decades it’s been really popular and the best choice hiking for visitors.

Furthermore, it is not only popular in Nepal, but is also the world’s most charismatic trekking route, where more than 40,000 trekkers visit in a year.

The Annapurna circuit trekking is truly a wonderful trekking trail located northwest of Kathmandu. This trek begins from very low land at 1000 meters and the highest point till 5416 meters- Thorong –La pass, which means trekking within a few days gives you so many wonderful opportunities to examine the real countryside culture, nature, and mighty Annapurna mountain panorama thus, no doubt Annapurna circuit trekking is a complete trekking package for trekkers.

However, Annapurna circuit trekking or Annapurna round trekking is a moderate hiking path in the massif Annapurna conservation area (ACAP) stars from rugged mountains from low land up to the very high pass a Thorong la , passing so many Gurung, Tibetan, Brahmin and other mixed cultural villages, their way of farming, the beauty of landscapes and beautifully made wooden and metal made bridges over Marsyagdi river and many streams.

Table of contents:

  • Annapurna circuit trek Highlights,
  • Facts of Annapurna circuit trek,
  • Annapurna circuit trek brief itinerary,
  • Annapurna circuit trek detailed itinerary
  • Annapurna circuit trekking options
  • Guide hiring for Annapurna circuit trek
  • Conclusion
  • FAQs for Annapurna circuit trek

Annapurna circuit trek Highlights:

  • Scenic drive from Kathmandu to Jagat,
  • Enjoy the stunning Natural diversities and explores Indigenous cultural villages  along the trail,
  • Reach to the top of Thorong La pass at 5,416 m and enjoy the circle of White Mountain View including massif Annapurna and Dhaulagiri.
  • Trekking through the verdant forest, farming, waterfalls, glacial lakes, Crystal clear blue rivers, and countryside local lifestyles.
  • There are also quite some Ages old Monasteries, and temples where there are unbelievable art and architecture,
  • After the Thorong la, you reach Muktinath as it is the most popular Hindu Pilgrims site in Nepal and the Stunning Kali Gandaki valley view in the west.
  • Observe the world’s deepest Gorge Dana, and a popular waterfall Rupchechhahara,
  • Visit natural hot spring Tatopani – A great place to relax next to the Kali Gandaki river,

Facts of Annapurna circuit trek:

Trekking duration: 11 days

Best trekking months: September – Early December & March to May

Group size Limits: Minimum 1 and maximum 35 People

Accommodations: Basic Lodges and tea houses

Foods: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner Provides by the lodge

Highest elevation: Thorong La pass (5,416 m)

Major Highlights: Manang, Thorong la pass-Muktinath, Marfa, and Tatopani

Route of Trek: Kathmandu – Jagat – Manang – Thorong-La pass – Muktinath – Jomsom – Tatopani – Pokhara – Kathmandu

Annapurna circuit trek brief itinerary:

Day 01: Drive from Kathmandu to Jagat (1,300 m) – 8 hrs.

Day 02: Trek from Jagat to Dharapani (1,960 m) – 6 hrs.

Day 03: Trek from Dharapani to Chame (2,710 m) – 5 hrs.

Day 04: Trek from Chame to Pisang (3,300 m) – 5 hrs.

Day 05: Trek from Pisang to Manang (3,540 m) – 6 hrs.

Day 06: Acclimatization day at Manang (3,540 m)

Day 07: Trek from Manang to Letdar (4,230 m) – 4 hrs.

Day 08: Trek from Letdar to Thorang Phedi (4,600 m) – 4 hrs.

Day 09: Trek to Muktinath (3,800 m) via Thorang La Pass (5,416 m) – 8 hrs

Day 10: Trek to Jomsom (2,670 m) – 4 hrs

Day 11: Fly/Drive to Pokhara (9,00 m) – 8 hrs.

Annapurna circuit trek detailed itinerary:

1 DAY: Arrival in Kathmandu.

Your trek to the Annapurna circuit starts as you arrive in Kathmandu. Our Airport representative will welcome you at the airport and then take you to your hotel. After check-in at the hotel, on your choice either rest for a few hours or explore the city nearby the hotel, and in the evening time, you will have a welcome dinner with some trekking information from the trekking leader.

2 DAY: Drive from Kathmandu to Jagat

From Kathmandu, you are driving all the way to Jagat along Trisuli and Marsyagdi River. It is about an 8-hour journey but you get to see the traditional houses, valley, farmland, Green Hills, Forest, and Headquarter of Lamjung district – the Besi Sahar. After Besi Sahar, we continue our drive to Jagat. We will spend a night there in the lodge, which is a beautiful mountain area.

3 DAY: Jagat to Dharapani- 1,960 m: 6 hrs. walk

Today is your first walking day for this beautiful trek. From here we take a popular route descending through the forest likewise some villages such as Chyamje, Sattale, Tal, Karte and so on…next, we have to pass a few bridges fixed on the cliff of massif rocks and passes also many traditional houses. Today is a relatively easy walking day.

We are staying at Dharapani tonight in the lodge.

4 Day: Dharapani to Chame- 2,710 m: 5 hrs walk

On your trail to Chame today you are walking on the ridge of Mountain and forest. It is mostly an easy walk again on a flat path, and the further walk goes smoothly and pleasant with all the beautiful scenery and breathtaking views of Annapurna II, Annapurna IV, and Lamjung Himal along with the wonderful natural hot spring.

Your 5 hours journey today takes you to the beautiful mountain settlement Chame, as it is also a popular administrative center of this area. You are staying in the lodge at Chame run by local people.

5 DAY: Chame to Pisang 3,300 m: 5 hrs.

From here we are taking a small trail along Marsyangdi, river, and dense forest. As long as you go up towards Pisang the dense forest will be thin and more visible around. The next after passing the forest the landscapes change dramatically and are more pleasant because you are over 3000 meters high and the view of white snow cap Mountain will be truly stunning.

Our pleasant 5 hours trek takes us to Beautiful Pisang village, where there is some tea house to eat and sleep in tonight.

06 DAY: Pisang to Manang (3,540 m): 6 hrs. Walk

After a warm and fresh early breakfast, we are talking popular trail to Manang. There are main two routes from here the lower trail and the upper trail passing traditional villages the Nwagal. From our exciting steps onwards we get to see Magical mountain views of Gangapurna, Tilicho, and Annapurna. Likewise, the landscapes before reaching Manang are just wonderful with a small pine forest and exceptional rock Foundations.

07 DAY: Manang Acclimatization day (3,540 m)

Manang is absolutely the best tea house camp during Annapurna circuit trekking and it is located at 3540 meters from the sea levels, which means it is the best spot to acclimatize your body, the next from here you can observe magical high mountain views of Gangapurna, Annapurna and many eye-catching snow cap peaks.

There are few monasteries that will give you immense opportunities to enjoy the local culture influenced by Tibetan Buddhist traditions. If you are physically fit and got the energy to walk for a day trip from Manang then you can hike to Ice Lake of Gangapurn Mountain similarly, or visit Milarepa bushiest cave. Notated that sleeping during the day is not good for your body to acclimatize thus, try to hike at least a hundred meters higher than your lodge.

You are spending one night again here in the lodge.

Day 08: Manang to Letdar (4,230): 4 hrs walk

Our hike begins again in the morning after breakfast. We trek along the rocky trail most of the time today and also along the bank of Jharsang Khola(stream), follow the gradual ascends and descents frequently than need to cross some basic bridges, passing some local villages then reach Letdar. Tonight we are staying here in the lodge.

Day 09: Letdar to Thorang Phedi (4,600 m)

From here we follow the trail going up straight throughout the massif rocks, landscapes, and admirable scenery. Our trail today takes us on the dry land with quite some colors making wonderful scenery and a giant White Mountain view in the background.

You are suggested to walk carefully at some point today because of the dangerous landscapes otherwise you will enjoy each and every step onwards to Throng Phedi.

You are very close to Thorong –La but tonight you are staying in the lodge with your guide, porter, and introduced hikers.

Day 10: Trek from Thorong Phedi to Muktinath via Thorang La Pass (5,416 m): 8 hrs.

Today is our most exciting day and also days with many adventure activities, such as walk-on Glacier Lake, reach to the top of Thorong la and Walk also on rocky trail formation. While you are walking towards Thorong Phedi to the op of Thorong la, it gets strong wind therefore, you are suggested to start your hike early in the morning and it takes about 3 to 4 hours to the top.

When you reach the top of Thorong la, you will have no doubt such a magnificent mountain panorama then you trek continue following the popular trail to Muktinath, however, from the top of Thorong la there will be very easy walking, all going downhill but quite windy, be aware from that. You are staying at the lodge in Muktinath today. 

Day 11: Muktinath to Jomsom (2,670 m): 4 Hours

From here we follow the steep trail down to Budigandaki River then we trek along the river to Jomsom. It is a popular trade center in the Mustang district and also the headquarters of the Mustang district. We spent one night here in the lodge.

There are two options from Jomsom to reach Pokhara, either fly from here to Pokhara or take a bus, jeep to Pokhara, If you are taking a jeep then you can stop at Tatopani for an hour to bathing in the pool then drive continue to Pokhara and if you are flying takes 20 minutes to Pokhara.

Day 12: Fly/Drive to Pokhara(850 m)

After a night’s stay at Jomsom, we can fly to Pokhara, which takes 20 minutes, and the flight is only available in the morning, likewise, if you want to get a jeep or bus to Pokhara you can take bus/jeep straight to Pokhara via Tatopani. Stay one night in Pokhara.

Conclusion:

11 Days Annapurna circuit trekking is an ultimate trekking trail in the Annapurna region who wants to experience the local culture in the mountain and enjoy the magnificent view of Complete Annapurna, Dhaulagiri, and Nilgiri. This trek takes you to a very remote area, where there are so many indigenous people and interesting culture, However Annapurna circuit trekking is the 2nd biggest trekking path starting from 800 m to 5416 m throughout the cultural houses, farms, rivers, valley, and mesmerizing white mountain view.

Annapurna circuit trekking options:

There are 40 % of travelers, who come to Nepal for the purpose of Annapurna trekking, especially the Annapurna circuit trek as it is the most visited and a complete 2 weeks holiday provides you many unique experiences. However, there are many people who want to experience this trek but because of budget, Time, and previous experiences they can’t make it there are few alternative options for Annapurna circuit trekking.

Few options for the Annapurna circuit trek:

  • Classic Annapurna circuit trek (Besisahar to Nayapul via Thorong la Pass)- 18 to 21 days
  • Besisahar to Tatopani via Thorong la pass – 15 days
  • Besisahar to Tatopani (then Bus and Jeep to Pokhara) – 15 days
  • Besisahar to Jomsom (then a flight or jeep to Pokhara) – 13 days
  • Drive to Jagat than to Tatopani – 12 days( Drive from Tatopani to Pokhara)
  • Drive to Chame than to Jomsom -10 days(Drive from Jomsom to Pokhara)

Mainly there are 3 popular options for the Annapurna circuit trek which are as bellows:

Option 1:

The common itinerary of this trek is quite long but if are able to follow this itinerary then you can experience various cultures from low elevation to the upper Annapurna region. For example, you begin your trek with a 7-hour drive from Kathmandu to Besisahar then the trek begins according to the itinerary and reaches Thorong la pass then to Muktinath. From here you trek continue to Jomsom- Marfa- Tukuche- Kalopani- Ghasa- Tatopani- Ghaorepani- Naya pul then back to Pokhara, it is a classic Annapurna round trek to experience the entire mountain life, culture, daily life of local, etc.

Option one Annapurna circuit trekking is for those trekkers who are curious more about countryside life, their traditions, cosmos, behaviors, and of course to enjoy the high Annapurna mountain panorama.

Option 2:

Option two is a shorter trek than option one, which is short on time but wishes to be on top of Thorong la (5,416, through the villages. In this option instead of taking a bus from Kathmandu Besisahar, you can take the bus/jeep straight to Jagat, which means you skip already few days then follow the popular trail of Annapurna circuit to Thorong la, then to Muktinath and the next you trek to Jomsom and fly to Pokhara, it will take 12 days only to complete it.

This option is truly the best for those trekkers, who are short on time but strong desire to enjoy the mountain scenery and culture.

Option 3:

It is relatively the easiest option for hikers. In this option, you start your trek from Pokhara to Nayapul and follow the popular route of Ghorepani then to Muktinath. It is 10 days half Annapurna circuit trek skipping the highest elevation the Thorong la pass (5416 m). Trekking to the Annapurna region via Ghorepani and Tatopani provides you the unbelievable natural scenery, a White Mountain view, the world’s deepest gorge, a natural hot spring, and unspoiled Thakali and Gurung culture along the route.

This trekking option is for those trekkers who are not so fit, are short on time, and are scared of the altitude. However trekking to Muktinath is half of the popular Annapurna circuit trek gives you many chances to enjoy the local life, introducing them, to high mountain vistas and Admirable kali Gandaki valley view.

FAQs for Annapurna circuit trek

How many days will be enough for the Annapurna circuit trek?

In general, for Annapurna circuit trek takes 18 days but it will still depend on where you going to finish your trek and where you begin, however, the normal trekking days for the Annapurna circuit trek is about 2 weeks, and the next in this beautiful trek you will minimum walk about 160 km and mix about 230 km.

The shortest duration for this trek is 10 days but you have to be physically fit and strong. If you have enough time and budget for your Nepal holiday then you can follow the classic Annapurna circuit trek which will take about 28 days.

What are the best months to go to the Annapurna circuit trek?

The best months for the Annapurna circuit trek and the entire Annapurna region are during spring (March-May) and (September – November). Trekking to Annapurna circuit/round during spring and autumn is the best because, there will be a clean route, no risk of landslides and avalanches, the view of the waterfall will be perfect with lots of water on, the temperature will be relatively mild, the sky gets really clear, which means you will have a magical view of Mt. Annapurna, Nilgiri, and Mt. Dhaulagiri mountain range.

Is the Annapurna circuit trek very difficult?

This is one of the most visited trekking and it is considered to be the moderate trek. While trekking in this area you don’t need any technical knowledge or any kind of equipment but you are suggested to be fit, experienced and positive.

There are various landscapes and terrain but there are limited hours of walking every day and enough time to walk during the day. The higher you ascend, the trek will be slightly harder and harder but you should drink a lot of water, and eat fresh food which will help you a lot in avoiding AMS. However, when you get more than 3500 m you should walk very slowly, take a rest whenever you want, eat enough, and drink enough.

Are there any problems with Altitude mountain sickness?

During Annapurna circuit trekking there is not really such a risk of altitude sickness but once you cross 3500m, you need to be slow and take care, because above 3500 m you may get mountain sickness. If you are heading to Annapurna circuit trekking you should be aware of mountain sickness and get some information also preventive medicine similar, incase if you need some information and treatment about AMS during the trek, you can visit the AMS lecture hall at Manang which is organized by The Himalayan Rescue Association.

What kind of accommodation can you get during Annapurna circuit trekking?

The Annapurna circuit trek is totally Tea house base trekking which means you don’t need to carry any tent or food, everything will be provided by the tea house and lodges. Generally, the tea houses and lodges rooms are basic with sharing bathrooms. You will have a bed, private locker, pillows, mattress, and a small tea table inside the room but not a blanket. This is why if you are trekking during peak season (Sep to Oct or march to May) you should take your own blanket. On request, the lodges provide blankets but are not 100 % sure in each tea houses so it is better to bring your own sleeping bag yourself.

There is a kind of heating system at the lodge in the middle of the dining hall which means if you are cold you can stay in the dining hall instead of the room and only by the sleeping time you can go to your room.

How much Nepali money/USD do I need per day?

In this trekking, you don’t need a lot of money but you have to bring enough money because there is no ATM machine/money exchange. Per day one trekker needs about 25 to 30 USD (3100 Nepali rupees) that will cover your 3 times meal and accommodation. Furthermore, if you want to eat chocolate, bars, and extra snacks then you might take about 40 USD per day person.

How much money do I need?

2000 NPR (approx. US$20) per day should be fine for covering your room and three basic meals per day. If you want to splurge a bit more and buy some additional snickers bars, have a continental meal for dinner, or drink heaps of hot chocolate, then think of spending up to 3000 NPR per day ($30).

The price which I mentioned above is in general but with your nature of expenses and intension, it can be different so keep in mind that prices may get higher together with the altitude increase and every additional year and season the cost of food and accommodation will be different.

Is a trekking permit compulsory for Annapurna circuit trekking?

Yes, it is compulsory to have an Annapurna conservation area permit (ACAP) and TIMS (Trekker’s Information Management System Card) card. The cost of a trekking permit per head cost $30 USD (Nepali rupee-3,000) and the TIMS card cost $20 USD.

You can obtain a Trekking permit from the Nepal tourism board (NTB) In Kathmandu. To make a permit you just need two p.p. size photographs and a passport copy.

Is our guide and porter compulsory?

The Annapurna circuit trekking can be done without a guide or porter but if you are here to explore the culture and mountains then you are kindly suggested to hire a guide and porter, they will help you a lot give you so much knowledge and locality. Next, you are also giving a great contribution to the poor local guide and Porter.

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