The Ultimate Annapurna Trek

The Annapurna Circuit and Sanctuary in one classic 3-week trek

22

days

Trek

From $2,660 Land only

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Holiday Overview

Highlights

  • Around Annapurna and across the Thorung La
  • Trek into the spectacular heart of the Annapurnas
  • Views of Manaslu, the Annapurnas and Dhaulagiri
  • The incredible Annapurna South Face and `Fishtail` peak

After Everest, the Annapurna range of mountains north of Pokhara are the most well known in Nepal and the highest peak, Annapurna I, has the distinction of being the first 8000-metre peak ever to be climbed. Four Annapurna peaks over 7500 metres together with Gangapurna form the main range, considered to be the most beautiful in the Himalaya and extending southwards, two encircling arms ending in Annapurna South and Machhapuchhre (the ‘Fishtail' peak), enclose a high cirque only penetrated by outsiders as recently as 1956. These are the locations for two of the Himalaya's classic treks, namely the Annapurna Circuit which circumnavigates the range and the Annapurna Sanctuary which visits the hidden cirque to view the incredible South Face of Annapurna. Previously these two treks were quite separate but taking advantage of new jeep roads which allow high access to the valleys of the Marsyangdi and Kali Gandaki we can combine the two most famous trails of the region into one classic 3-week trek. This Ultimate Annapurna trek combines spectacular mountain scenery with a wide diversity of ethnic and cultural experiences as we travel through very different ecological life zones. This is without doubt, the ultimate Annapurna experience and is justifiably placed among the world's top treks.

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Is this holiday for you?

This Annapurna Circuit and Annapurna Sanctuary lodge trek is quite sustained but offers relatively straightforward trekking conditions throughout, following excellent trails which are well-served with tea-houses and lodges. The trek has a number of quite long days and the crossing of the Thorung La will present a significant challenge to the regular hill-walker. It should be noted that trekking at altitudes above 3000 metres makes greater demands on the body than walking at low elevations, and is of itself challenging even for fit hikers. Our itinerary is well staged to allow the best possible acclimatisation but you will need to ensure you are physically prepared for the trek. You should be comfortable with walking for 5 to 7 hours each day and for several days continuously.

Brief Itinerary

View in full
  • Meet at the group hotel in Kathmandu. Transfers from Kathmandu Airport are provided.
  • Drive towards Pokhara, before turning into the Marsyangdi Valley. Overnight at Jagat (1314m)
  • Start trekking. Via Chamje and Tal to Dharapani (1945m)
  • Trek through a number of villages to Chame (2713m) with good views of Manaslu.
  • Trek to Upper Pisang (3300m).
  • Trek on a high trail through Ghyaru (3720m) and Ngawal (3680m) to Manang (3540m).
  • A rest and acclimatisation day, with optional hike. A second night in Manang.
  • Short trek via several isolated tea houses to Letdar (4250m). Afternoon at leisure.
  • Trek beside the Jarsang Khola, with views of Gangapurna. Overnight at Thorung High Camp (4750m).
  • Early start for the crossing of the Thorung La (5416m) and long descent to Muktinath (3800m).
  • Drive south through the Kali Gandaki Valley, via Marpha and Ghasa, to Tatopani (1190m).
  • Trek up out of the valley with great views of Dhaulagiri. Overnight at Ghorepani (2900m).
  • Optional pre-dawn ascent of Poon Hill (3195m), then trek eastwards along a ridge to Tadapani (2650m).
  • Trek towards the valley of the Modi Khola with views of Fish Tail. Arrive at Chhomrong (2210m).
  • Trek through rhododendron and bamboo forest to the collection of lodges at Himalaya (2310m).
  • Ascend through a narrowing of the valley to Annapurna Basecamp (4130m).
  • Early start for the sunrise views. Then, after breakfast at the lodge, descend to Dobhan (2540m).
  • Trek down through bamboo forest to the Chhomrong River. Then steeply up to Chhomrong.
  • Contour around and then descend on a stepped trail to Gandruk (1940m) on the west side of the Modi Khola.
  • Trek down to Naya Pul and drive to the hotel in Pokhara. Afternoon free to explore Lakeside.
  • Fly to Kathmandu. The rest of the day is free for sightseeing (optional city tour) or relaxing.
  • Departure day. Transfers to Kathmandu Airport are provided.
2016
Sun 02 Oct - Sun 23 Oct Code UAT /03/16/ Adult$2,660 Status Guaranteed Book now
More information
  • The Ultimate Annapurna Trek
  • The departure reference for this tour is UAT /03/16/
  • This tour begins on Sun 02 Oct and departs on Sun 23 Oct
  • This departure is guaranteed. Secure your place today with a deposit of $400
  • Single Supplement $165 - Includes group nights in Kathmandu & Pokhara only (not available in lodges)
Sun 16 Oct - Sun 06 Nov Code UAT /04/16/ Adult$2,660 Status Available Book now
More information
  • The Ultimate Annapurna Trek
  • The departure reference for this tour is UAT /04/16/
  • This tour begins on Sun 16 Oct and departs on Sun 06 Nov
  • This departure is available to book. Secure your place today with a deposit of $400
  • Single Supplement $165 - Includes group nights in Kathmandu & Pokhara only (not available in lodges)
Sun 30 Oct - Sun 20 Nov Code UAT /05/16/ Adult$2,660 Status Guaranteed Book now
More information
  • The Ultimate Annapurna Trek
  • The departure reference for this tour is UAT /05/16/
  • This tour begins on Sun 30 Oct and departs on Sun 20 Nov
  • This departure is guaranteed. Secure your place today with a deposit of $400
  • Single Supplement $165 - Includes group nights in Kathmandu & Pokhara only (not available in lodges)
Sun 13 Nov - Sun 04 Dec Code UAT /06/16/ Adult$2,660 Status Available Book now
More information
  • The Ultimate Annapurna Trek
  • The departure reference for this tour is UAT /06/16/
  • This tour begins on Sun 13 Nov and departs on Sun 04 Dec
  • This departure is available to book. Secure your place today with a deposit of $400
  • Single Supplement $165 - Includes group nights in Kathmandu & Pokhara only (not available in lodges)
Sun 11 Dec - Sun 01 Jan Code UAT /07/16/ Adult$2,660 Status Available Book now
More information
  • The Ultimate Annapurna Trek
  • The departure reference for this tour is UAT /07/16/
  • This tour begins on Sun 11 Dec and departs on Sun 01 Jan
  • This departure is available to book. Secure your place today with a deposit of $400
  • Single Supplement $165 - Includes group nights in Kathmandu & Pokhara only (not available in lodges)
2017
Sun 19 Mar - Sun 09 Apr Code UAT /01/17/ Adult$2,820 Status Available Book now
More information
  • The Ultimate Annapurna Trek
  • The departure reference for this tour is UAT /01/17/
  • This tour begins on Sun 19 Mar and departs on Sun 09 Apr
  • This departure is available to book. Secure your place today with a deposit of $400
  • Single Supplement $165 - Includes group nights in Kathmandu & Pokhara only (not available in lodges)
Sun 09 Apr - Sun 30 Apr Code UAT /02/17/ Adult$2,820 Status Available Book now
More information
  • The Ultimate Annapurna Trek
  • The departure reference for this tour is UAT /02/17/
  • This tour begins on Sun 09 Apr and departs on Sun 30 Apr
  • This departure is available to book. Secure your place today with a deposit of $400
  • Single Supplement $165 - Includes group nights in Kathmandu & Pokhara only (not available in lodges)
The LAND ONLY dates and prices are for the itinerary joining in Kathmandu. For clients making their own flight arrangements, Kathmandu Airport is the most convenient for transfers to the group hotel. Please refer to 'Joining Arrangements and Transfers' in the trip dossier for further details.

Flights SHOULD NOT be booked until you have received your booking confirmation and the trip is showing 'Guaranteed to Run' or 'Limited'.


BOOK WITH KE CONFIDENCE - No surcharge guarantee

We have undertaken to guarantee that all of our Land Only prices will not change once you have booked your holiday. Unlike some of our competitors we have decided never to surcharge, whether you are booking for this year or the next.

Map & Itinerary

The Route

  • point
  • airport
  • peaks
  • pass
  • trip direction
  • transfer
  • trek

Holiday Itinerary

  • Meet at the group hotel in Kathmandu. Transfers from Kathmandu Airport are provided.

    Meet at the group hotel in Kathmandu. Transfers from Kathmandu Airport are provided. Depending on your arrival time, you may have the opportunity to explore the immediate vicinity of the hotel and get acclimatised to this bustling city. Alternatively, you may prefer to recover from your journey by relaxing beside the hotel pool. KE Land Only package services begin with the evening meal. Your guide will take dinner with you and will provide an informal briefing about the days ahead.

    • Accommodation Hotel with swimming pool

    • Meals d

  • Drive towards Pokhara, before turning into the Marsyangdi Valley. Overnight at Jagat (1314m)

    We set off after an early breakfast for the drive westwards to the start of the trek, accompanied by our trek crew. After 3 hours or so, we arrive at the town of Mugling and stop for an early lunch at a roadside restaurant. Soon after leaving Mugling, we reach the small town of Dumre, beside the Marsyangdi River. Here, we turn north on a smaller road which follows the river. We cross the river on a long suspension bridge at Syange before climbing to our overnight accommodation at Jagat (1314m).

    • Accommodation Lodge

    • Meals bld

  • Start trekking. Via Chamje and Tal to Dharapani (1945m)

    Today we begin our trek around the Annapurna massif. Although the road continues up valley, its condition is very rough and it is much more pleasurable to walk from here. Where we can, we take the old trekking trail away from the road. From Jagat we start with a steady climb to Chamje, before descending to cross the river on a suspension bridge. Climbing once more, we enter the Buddhist region of Manang at the village of Tal (which means lake in Nepali). Here the terrain levels for a short section and the raging river slows to a lake-like appearance. Beyond Tal, the trail crosses the river again and continues for 4 km to Dharapani (1943m).Beyond Tal, the trail crosses the river again and continues for 4 km to Dharapani (1945m).

    • Accommodation Lodge

    • Ascent 830m

    • Distance 12km

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 200m

    • Time 5 - 6 hrs trekking

  • Trek through a number of villages to Chame (2713m) with good views of Manaslu.

    The valley now turns towards the west, as we pass through the interesting Buddhist village of Bagar Chap. Manaslu is visible behind us and Annapurna 2 comes occasionally into view to the south. Even during today's walk we will be obliged to follow sections of the new road, as we pass through forested areas and stop off to check out several small settlements en route to our overnight stopping place at Chame (2713m). This is the administrative centre of this region, with shops, a bank and a school, as well as views of the Annapurnas.

    • Accommodation Lodge

    • Ascent 1300m

    • Distance 18km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 510m

    • Time 6 - 7 hrs trekking

  • Trek to Upper Pisang (3300m).

    We cross the Marsyangdi several times today, in a steep gorge section of the river. The path is sometimes built into the cliffside on wooden piers. Climbing through a forested ridge beyond Buradhan, we reach a more open valley with some pasture, where we cross the river to its north bank, to reach the terraced fields of Upper Pisang (3300m). We have great views of the north side of Annapurna 2.

    • Accommodation Lodge

    • Ascent 1000m

    • Distance 19km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 300m

    • Time 6 - 7 hrs trekking

  • Trek on a high trail through Ghyaru (3720m) and Ngawal (3680m) to Manang (3540m).

    Today's walk will take us even further away from the valley floor and up onto its northern slopes, via the interesting villages of Ghyaru (3720m) and Ngawal (3680m). The main Annapurna Circuit trail follows the river in the valley floor but the views of the Annapurnas from this high level trail are simply stunning and this, together with the fascinating houses and gompas of the isolated settlements that we will see, makes the extra effort involved in walking this trail very worthwhile. Plus, it's great for our acclimatisation. From Ngawal we descend to the valley and rejoin the main Annapurna Circuit trail at Braga, from where we have a mainly level walk for approximately 4km to reach Manang (3540m).

    • Accommodation Lodge

    • Ascent 980m

    • Distance 20km

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 760m

    • Time 7 - 8 hrs trekking

  • A rest and acclimatisation day, with optional hike. A second night in Manang.

    Manang is a large village inhabited by Tibetan people. We spend a day here, to help with our acclimatisation, prior to crossing the Thorung La. There is plenty to see and do around Manang, which is the last sizeable village on this side of the pass. As a part of our acclimatisation, we will want to get up as high as possible during the course of a short walk. One option is to hike up to the Chongkor viewpoint above Gangapurna Lake and to carry on to a prayer-flagged ridge and deserted village, with great views northwards across the valley and towards the route leading to the Thorung La.

    • Accommodation Lodge

    • Ascent 460m

    • Distance 6km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 460m

    • Time 3 hrs trekking

  • Short trek via several isolated tea houses to Letdar (4250m). Afternoon at leisure.

    In accordance with our programme of careful acclimatisation, we must ascend very slowly and this gives us a relatively short day as we continue toward the Thorung La. Climbing out of the Marsyangdi Valley, there are great views of Manaslu, the Annapurnas and Tilicho Peak as we head northwest up the Jarsang Khola, through scrubby juniper and across alpine meadows up to the settlement of Letdar (4250m).

    • Accommodation Lodge

    • Ascent 830m

    • Distance 13km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 150m

    • Time 4 - 5 hrs trekking

  • Trek beside the Jarsang Khola, with views of Gangapurna. Overnight at Thorung High Camp (4750m).

    We continue on the east bank of the Jarsang stream to a covered bridge, beyond which a steep trail climbs across scree to reach the tea-houses at Thorung Phedi (4450m) (a name which means 'base of the Thorong La'). To make the crossing of the pass easier tomorrow, we will hike up for a further hour and a half to the single lodge at Thorung High Camp (4750m). Arriving at around midday, we will have lunch and then take it easy and make sure we are well fed and well acclimatised ahead of the pass crossing tomorrow.

    • Accommodation Lodge

    • Ascent 990m

    • Distance 9km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 330m

    • Time 4 - 5 hrs trekking

  • Early start for the crossing of the Thorung La (5416m) and long descent to Muktinath (3800m).

    No need for too early a start from High Camp. After breakfast at around 6 am, we set off on the steep ascent to the Thorung La. The trail is well defined, though potentially icy in place. After the steep start, it eases off, passing a number of glacial lakes on the slow climb to the cairns and prayer flags at the pass (5416m). At this altitude, this is a tough 2 to 3-hour climb. There are tremendous views in both directions. In addition to the mountains that have been with us for the last few days, we can see the brown and red hills of Mustang to the north-west and the valley of the Kali Gandaki below us. Descending from the pass is quite straightforward, but hard on the knees. It is three hours (and 1500 metres) down to the sacred village of Muktinath, with excellent views of Dhaulagiri 1, Tukuche Peak and Nilgiri.

    • Accommodation Lodge

    • Ascent 670m

    • Distance 15km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 1810m

    • Time 8 - 9 hrs trekking

  • Drive south through the Kali Gandaki Valley, via Marpha and Ghasa, to Tatopani (1190m).

    The road that for many years has been slowly extended up the Kali Gandaki Valley has now reached Muktinath. rather than walk along this dusty jeep road we now board our transport for the spectacular journey through the Worl'd deepest gorge between the Himalayan giants of Dhaulagiri and Annapurna. This road through the mountains is subject to blockage and landslip so we may have to walk short sections of it as we make our way down through the airstrip town of Jomsom to Marpha with its whitewashed houses, paved streets and numerous well-kept lodges and Tibetan craft shops and then on into the wooded part of the valley and down to Tatopani, where it will feel particularly warm, having descended more than 2500 metres since setting out this morning. Tatopani means 'hot water' in the Nepalese language and there are hot springs here which can provide a relaxing end to a long day of driving. We stay overnight in a lodge at Tatopani.

    • Accommodation Lodge

    • Meals bld

  • Trek up out of the valley with great views of Dhaulagiri. Overnight at Ghorepani (2900m).

    Leaving the Kali Gandaki behind, we follow a steep trail which climbs the valley of the Gahr Khola. After a couple of hours the scenery opens out and there are fine views back towards the Kali Gandaki and Dhaulagiri, whilst ahead of us lies a steep terraced hillside, dotted with farms and villages. We take lunch in the village of Chitre approximately two-thirds of the way up the 1700 metre climb to Ghorepani. The going is easier after lunch and before long the trail enters an unusual (and cool) forest of moss-hung oak and rhododendrons for the last hour or so to Ghorepani (2855m). Large grey langur monkeys inhabit this high woodland and the sight of these bounding white-furred, black-faced creatures is at first startling. Entering Ghorepani is itself something of a surprise. Numerous tall, chalet-style, wooden lodges crowd around the trail at the ridge crest and present a rather incongruous sight. At this point we are at the junction of several trekking routes and there are likely to be lots of travellers passing through this ridge-top settlement in all directions. Whichever way they have come, they will be tired after a long climb and will stop to slake their thirst at one of the many hostelries. Traditionally a stopping place on the route from Pokhara into the prosperous Kali Gandaki Valley, the name Ghorepani means horse-watering place.

    • Accommodation Lodge

    • Ascent 1830m

    • Distance 16km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 200m

    • Time 6 - 7 hrs trekking

  • Optional pre-dawn ascent of Poon Hill (3195m), then trek eastwards along a ridge to Tadapani (2650m).

    It is a must for those who stay at Ghorepani to make the walk up to the celebrated viewpoint of Poon Hill (3195m), which is a continuation of the ridge to the west of the village. Dawn is the best time to go - so, we arrange a wake up call at 5 a.m. and those who wish can head up the well marked track by the light of our head-lamps. The first light of dawn illuminates Dhaulagiri and Tukuche Peak with a surreal pink glow. You may be able to buy coffee and breakfast from some enterprising Nepali who has carried his wares up to Poon Hill to take advantage of the morning trade. Descending to Ghorepani, we make time for breakfast, before setting off on our trek towards the south side of the Annapurnas and into the fabled annapurna Sanctuary. Our trek today takes us eastwards, through rhododendron forest and along a pleasant ridge-top trail to Tadapani (2650m) where we check into our lodge.

    • Accommodation Lodge

    • Ascent 1250m

    • Distance 13km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 1430m

    • Time 5 - 7 hrs trekking

  • Trek towards the valley of the Modi Khola with views of Fish Tail. Arrive at Chhomrong (2210m).

    Continuing our trek towards the Modi Khola (the river flowing out of the Annapurna Sanctuary) and with great views of the ‘Fish Tail’ peak, Machhapuchhre, we pass through a number of charming settlements, en route to our overnight lodge in the highly pictursque Gurung village of Chomrong (2210m).

    • Accommodation Lodge

    • Ascent 700m

    • Distance 9km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 1160m

    • Time 4 hrs trekking

  • Trek through rhododendron and bamboo forest to the collection of lodges at Himalaya (2310m).

    We start the day heading downhill, mostly negotiating stone steps as we descend to the Chomrong Khola. What goes down must go up again, and having crossed this side stream we begin a steady ascent of the main valley of the Modi Khola. In less than 1.5 hours of trekking we reach the village of Sinuwa where we take a welcome break. From here the trail continies to climb through terraced fields and then through forest of bamboo and rhododendron to the ridge crest at 'Sinuwa Hill Top' which we should reach after a further 1.5 hours of trekking. We continue through the forest (with chance of seeing a troop of monkeys) mostly following the contour and then making a short descent to the collection of lodges known as Bamboo (2310m) reached after 2 more hours of trekking. From Bamboo we climb again through yet more attractive forest, reaching the lodges of Dobhan after just over an hour and after a final 1.5 hours we reach our overnight lodging at the place known as 'Himalaya'.

    • Accommodation Lodge

    • Ascent 1460m

    • Distance 14km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 820m

    • Time 6 - 7 hrs trekking

  • Ascend through a narrowing of the valley to Annapurna Basecamp (4130m).

    The next section of the trail is subject to avalanche during the winter and usually has to be rebuilt each year so it is not possible to describe exactly. Some years this may involve a long climb to by-pass unstable ground in the steep-sided valley but mostly the trail-makers do a good job of finding a route which makes a steady ascent including the constructiion of some ingenius bridges. Along the way we pass the fire-blackened overhang of Hinko Cave, used by porters as shelter and we should reach the lodges at Deorali (3170m) after around 2 hours. Beyond Deorali the valley narrows to a steep sided gorge as we head towards the 'gateway' to the Annapurna Sanctuary. Depending on the trail conditions, we may opt to cross the young Modi Khola to the east side for a while before returning to the west to climb up to the area which is called Machhapuchhre Basecamp (MBC), a level and grassy moraine platform at 3700 metres, with several lodges. At this point we have passed through the narrow 'entrance' to the Sanctuary and find ourselves in more open country which is dominated by giant snow covered peaks. It will take around 2 - 3 hours of trekking from Deorali to reach MBC and from here it is a relatively gentle walk of only about 2½ miles.to Annapurna South Basecamp (4130m). Increasingly impressive views and jaw-dropping mountain moments reward us for our efforts as we climb the last steep section before reaching the basecamp area and the entire south face of Annapurna is revealed. A cirque of stupendous peaks surround us and the feeling of being inside a hidden valley - a snctuary in fact - is overwhelming. After we check into our lodge we can relax and admire one of the most stunning mountain amphitheatres in the Himalaya.

    • Accommodation Lodge

    • Ascent 1550m

    • Distance 14km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 280m

    • Time 6 hrs trekking

  • Early start for the sunrise views. Then, after breakfast at the lodge, descend to Dobhan (2540m).

    For those who wish, a pre-dawn wake-up is worth the extra discomfort to catch the sunrise on this unique mountain scene. After breakfast we leave all this behind and retrace our steps first to MBC then on to Deorali where we take lunch after 3.5 hours of trekking. In the afternoon we continue our descent of the Modi Khola to reach the relatively warm climes of Dobhan (2540m).

    • Accommodation Lodge

    • Ascent 280m

    • Distance 17km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 1880m

    • Time 5 - 6 hrs trekking

  • Trek down through bamboo forest to the Chhomrong River. Then steeply up to Chhomrong.

    Back into the forests again as we pass through Bamboo and the ridge top Sinuwa where we take lunch. After lunch we swop the forest for terraced fields as we descend to the Chomrong Khola and begin a final climb of about an hour and a half up the stepped trail leading to Chhomrong.

    • Accommodation Lodge

    • Ascent 720m

    • Distance 12km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 1010m

    • Time 4 - 5 hrs trekking

  • Contour around and then descend on a stepped trail to Gandruk (1940m) on the west side of the Modi Khola.

    Today is a relatively easy hike, starting on a fairly level trail for the first 2 hours, passing through small Gurung villages and rhododendron forests. After crossing a small wooden bridge over the Kimrong Khola we part company from the trail on which we walked in. Instead of crossing 'New Bridge' to Landruk our trail now follows the west bank of the Modi Khola and ascends steeply to the village of Gandruk. At an elevation of 1940 metres, Gandruk is an exceptional village and has been given the status of 'model village' by the Annapurna Conservation Area Authority.

    • Accommodation Lodge

    • Ascent 760m

    • Distance 10km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 1010m

    • Time 5 hrs trekking

  • Trek down to Naya Pul and drive to the hotel in Pokhara. Afternoon free to explore Lakeside.

    The trail follows the fall of the Modi Khola and in around 4 hours we reach the bustling road-head town of Birenthanti. At the road beyond the town, we meet up with our transport for the one hour ride back to Pokhara where we check in to our comfortable hotel close to Phewa Tal. After a shower and clean-up we will have some free time to wander by the lake - or sit in the garden of one of the excellent lakeside restaurants and admire the view of the Annapurnas. Compared to Kathmandu, Pokhara is a very laid-back town and is the perfect place to relax at the end of our trek. Pokhara also has a reputation for great restaurants and this evening we will go out for a celebratory meal.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Ascent 170m

    • Distance 13km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 1080m

    • Time 4 - 5 hrs trekking

  • Fly to Kathmandu. The rest of the day is free for sightseeing (optional city tour) or relaxing.

    We take the morning flight to Kathmandu. One of the attractions of any visit to Nepal is the chance to walk the streets of Kathmandu, which presents a fascinating mosaic of shops, cafes and restaurants, food markets and street vendors, as well as a bewildering array of colourful temples and shrines. This evening we will have a dinner in one of Thamel’s excellent restaurants.

    • Accommodation Hotel with swimming pool

    • Meals bld

  • Departure day. Transfers to Kathmandu Airport are provided.

    KE Land Only package services end after breakfast. Transfers to Kathmandu Airport are provided. There are lots of extensions that can easily be added to your holiday in Nepal. Why not pre-book a simple day-tour in the Kathmandu Valley, or a multi-day excursion to one of the important wildlife reserves at Chitwan or Bardia. Extension packages are also available to include a visit to neighbouring Tibet or Bhutan. Contact our office for details.

    • Meals b

Holiday Information

  • An experienced English speaking local leader
  • Kathmandu Airport transfers
  • Internal flights and all land transport involved in the itinerary
  • All accommodation as described in the trip dossier
  • All meals
  • Guided sightseeing tour of Kathmandu
  • Once on trek the group will be assisted by porters and a local guide
  • Travel Insurance
  • Nepalese Visa
  • Tips for porters and other trek staff
  • Miscellaneous expenses - drinks and souvenirs etc.

Typical meals provided in the lodges will include Nepali dishes but also international cuisine from pizza and chips to apple pie. To ensure that the group can eat together, we order meals in advance and your trip leader will arrange a set menu for the group, which will alternate daily between local and international dishes. Breakfast will usually be porridge, eggs, bread and a hot drink, lunch will be a simple meal with a hot drink, and dinner will be 3 courses consisting of soup, main meal and a simple pudding. If you wish to order additional dishes and/or snacks, you should budget accordingly. Boiled drinking water will be provided at breakfast, lunch and dinner. All the lodges and tea-houses sell snacks, chocolate bars, soft drinks and beer. In Kathmandu we take our meals in the hotel and local restaurants.

All meals are included in the trip price from dinner on day 1 to breakfast on day 22.
All clients travelling to Kathmandu will be met at the airport by a KE representative who will arrange the transfer to the group hotel. Clients MUST provide the KE office with full details of their flights and should let us know if Kathmandu Airport transfers are not required. Hotel contact details and an emergency number will be provided with your booking confirmation.
Whilst on trek there are 18 nights in lodges/tea houses. All accommodation is on a twin-sharing basis (note that in some lodges only dormitory beds may be available). If you are travelling by yourself you will be paired up with another single client of the same sex. The Nepalese trekking lodges also known as 'tea-houses' are simple, friendly and atmospheric. As they are far from the nearest road is it not surprising that they are simple establishments as everything must be carried up by porters or animals. Mostly these lodges have heated dining areas which are often attractively decorated. Accommodation is basic in unheated rooms with wooden beds and foam mattress. You will need a sleeping bag. The lodges have shared washing and toilet facilities. Some lodges have solar powered showers (charged at $2 - $3 per shower) and battery charging facilities (also charged at a rate per hour). Staying at the lodges is a great way to meet fellow hikers and the locals. The group will also spend a total of 3 nights in Kathmandu and Pokhara at centrally-located tourist-class hotels. For the 3 hotel nights single rooms are available for a supplementary cost. Additional hotel nights in Kathmandu are also available. For Hotel prices and single supplement costs please refer to the dates and prices page of the trip on our website. Hotels are subject to availability and prices may vary.

View the gallery below for images of the style of accommodation used

Shortly after first light you should wake and start packing your kitbag and making preparations for the day. Coming down to the lodge dining room we will be served breakfast from the lodge kitchen before setting off on the day’s trek. We will generally reach our lunch stop after around 4 hours walking. Lunch break usually takes an hour or even two and these will be taken at tea houses along the route. This is a great time for relaxing, reading and sitting in the Sun. Porters usually catch up with the group during lunch and then are well on their way to the evening’s stop which we hope to reach well before dusk. It is usual for the afternoon’s walk to be shorter than the morning session. After checking in to your room you may wish to relax with a beer on the terrace of your lodge before taking dinner. This is a great time of day for reliving the events of the trek so far and for general socialising. By 9.00pm most trekkers will have retired to bed and by 10.pm the whole lodge will be asleep.

Internal Flights

Access to the high and remote areas of the Himalaya where our treks start is often only possible using internal flights. The changeable nature of mountain weather makes flying conditions complex. In addition the Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal does not operate to the same standards as those of western nations and all airlines in Nepal appear on the European Commission’s list of airlines that are banned from flying into EU member states. Flying in Nepal is an acknowledged risk, and the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office travel advice provides further details which you can read on their website at: www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/nepal/safety-and-security. KE is mindful of its duty of care to clients travelling with us in Nepal and we were stakeholders in a recent independent air audit of Nepal airlines undertaken by UK tour operators during 2013. KE uses only three airlines in Nepal which were approved by this audit as safe carriers. These airlines are: Yeti Airlines, Tara Air and Buddha Air. We continue to cooperate with other tour operators to monitor aviation safety in Nepal and will ensure we remain a stakeholder in any further air safety audits. While we have taken appropriate action to try to minimise the risks of flying in Nepal, you should be aware that flying in mountainous terrain is not without any risk.

The group will be accompanied by an experienced, professional English-speaking local leader, and on trek will have the services of porters and local trekking guide

Approximately £250 - £300 (or equivalent in US dollars, Euros etc.) should be allowed for miscellaneous expenses including approximately £50 - £60 (in equivalent Nepali rupees) for porter and trek crew tips. It is not necessary to obtain local currency prior to departure. Sterling, US Dollars and Euros are equally acceptable for exchange in Nepal. We recommend that you carry your travel money in the form of cash, since you will exchange the majority of this on the day of your arrival in Kathmandu. If you prefer not to carry all of your spending money in cash, it is possible to withdraw money from ATMs in Kathmandu using your debit or credit card. During the trek it is possible to buy snacks, chocolate, soft drinks and beer on most days. Please be aware that since everything has to be carried up by porters or animals, these items become more expensive as you gain altitude.

Tipping is the accepted way of saying ‘thank you’ for good service. Tips do not form part of the wages of your porters and trek crew but they are very much appreciated. It is important to remember that tipping is voluntary and should be dependent on good service. Normally the tips are given at the end of the trek and this is best done as a group. Most groups will give the tips with a bit of ceremony (or sometimes a party) on the last evening, to mark the end of the trip. As a guide, we recommend that each group member contributes around the equivalent of £50 -60 in rupees to these tips. More detailed guidelines on tipping will be sent with your joining instructions. At the end of a trek many people also like to donate various items of their equipment to the porters and trek staff who work so hard to make the trip a success. Boots, gloves, hats, scarves and even socks (clean of course) are always warmly received by the porters. Technical clothing and equipment such as head-torches and trekking poles are highly prized by the Shepa crews. If you think you would like to donate equipment at the end of your trip, your local leader will make arrangements for a fair distribution among the crew.

Your baggage on trek will be carried by porters or pack animals. The packed weight of your trek bag whilst trekking should be no more than 15kg (33 pounds). It is possible to leave clothes or other items not required on trek at the group hotel.

All KE clients will receive a FREE KE trek bag.  These have been specially made to stand up to the rigours of adventure travel.  Your KE bag will be posted to you when your trip is guaranteed to run or on receipt of your booking if the trip is already guaranteed.  If you have travelled with us before and already have a KE trek bag you can select an alternative free gift in the booking process.

This holiday involves going to very high altitude. During the course of your trip you will be spending at least one night above 4000 metres and/or trekking to 5000 metres or above. This is not something that you should worry about; the human body is quite capable of adapting to a very wide range of altitudes, but it is important that we follow some simple rules in order to acclimatise successfully. Before coming on this holiday you should read the advice on trekking at high altitude. Unless you have previous experience of trekking above 4000 metres you should consult one of our trekking experts before embarking on this holiday. On this trip we carry a portable altitude chamber (PAC-bag) and/or bottled oxygen for use in emergencies.

The following checklist should help you with your packing. As a general rule, you should always try to keep the weight of your equipment to a minimum. The packed weight of your trek bag while trekking should be no more than 15 kgs. It is possible to leave clothes or other items not required on trek at the group hotel.
 

You must bring the following items:

  • Hiking boots

  • Socks

  • Trekking trousers

  • Waterproof overtrousers

  • Underwear

  • Baselayer shirts

  • Casual shirt and/or T-shirts

  • Fleece jacket or warm jumper

  • Waterproof jacket

  • Warm jacket (down)*

  • Sunhat

  • Warm hat

  • Sunglasses

  • Gloves or mittens

  • Daypack 30 litres

  • Headtorch and spare batteries

  • Sun protection (including total bloc for lips, nose etc.)

  • Water bottles 1 Litre x2

  • Sleeping bag (comfort rated –15ºC)*

  • Washbag and toiletries

  • Travel towel

  • Toilet paper (you can also buy this in the lodges if necessary)

  • Antibacterial handwash

  • Small towel

  • Selection of dry bags (to keep trek bag contents dry)

  • Small padlock (to lock trek bag)

  • Basic First Aid Kit including: antiseptic cream, throat lozenges, diarrhoea treatment (Imodium), altitude (Diamox), painkillers, plasters and blister treatment, insect repellent, and re-hydration salts (Dioralite). Glucose tablets and multi-vitamin tablets.

The following items are optional:

  • Trekking poles

  • Trainers or similar

  • Gaiters

  • Spare laces

  • Shorts

  • Thermal baselayer - leggings

  • Sleeping bag liner

  • Swimwear (for the hotel pool in Kathmandu)

  • Travel clothes

  • Camera

  • Pen-knife (remember to pack sharp objects in hold baggage)

Notes

*Available for hire/rental through KE Adventure Travel
Please make all requests at least 6 weeks prior to the trip departure date. Please note all hire / rental equipment is issued in Kathmandu. Please remember to allow room in your trek bag for these items.

The Nepalese are still traditional and conservative in the way they dress. Therefore to avoid embarrassment on both sides we recommend that you respect this and do not wear revealing clothing or sleeveless tops while visiting Nepal. Shorts are acceptable, but they should reach to just above the knee and be modest and for women it is preferable to wear trousers or a long skirt.

For each holiday there is a minimum number of participants required to enable it to go ahead. Once the minimum number is reached, the trip status will change from 'Available' to 'Guaranteed to run'. You can check the trip status for each departure in ‘Dates and Prices’ table. Other than in exceptional circumstances, we will not cancel a trip once it has achieved this guaranteed to run status and so you are free to proceed with your international flight booking and other travel arrangements.

A passport with 6 months remaining validity at the end of your stay is generally required. The information that we provide is for UK passport holders. Please check the relevant embassy or consulate for other nationalities. It is your responsibility to ensure that you have the correct travel documents and visas for your holiday. Visa requirements and charges are subject to change without notice. If you are travelling outside the EU you should have at least 2 blank pages in your passport.

Transit via India

If you are travelling via India (Delhi or Calcutta) to your destination you may also require a visa for India. This may apply even if you are not leaving the airport unless your baggage has been checked all the way through to your destination. Generally, if you use the same carrier for both legs of your journey, you will not need an India Visa. Please download the detailed information document: Visa PDF India.

Visa Nepal

All nationalities require a visa. The visa fee is $25 for 15 days, $40 for 30 days, $100 for 90 days and is obtainable on arrival. Payment must be made in cash and USD, GBP or Euros are accepted. You will require 2 passport photos.

For all the regions of Nepal that we visit an additional permit is required. This is included in the holiday price and KE will apply for it, with your full passport details and 1 passport photo (sent by post or emailed). You must supply this to us at least 4 weeks prior to departure.

For the following holidays, in addition to the above, we will also require you to supply a copy of the information page of your passport (sent by post or emailed).

These trips are: Kanchenjunga (KAN), Mustang (MUS), Dolpo (DOL), Manaslu (MAN), Hidden Valleys of Naar and Phu (NAP), Naar to Mustang (NTM), Humla and Limi Circuit Trek (HUM), Naya Kanga and the Ganja La (NKG), Yala Peak and the Ganja La (YPGL), Tent Peak (TPK), Ramdung and Parchemo (RAM), Mera Peak, Island Peak and the Amphu Labsta (MIP), Island Peak Climber (IPC), Peaks and Passes on Nepal (MTR); Mera Peak Climb (MER); and Chulu Far East & the Tilicho La (CTL); Tabsar Peak and the Tsum Valley (TVC), Mukot Peak (MKP).

You should contact your doctor or travel clinic to check whether you require any specific vaccinations or other preventive measures. You should be up to date with routine courses and boosters as recommended in the UK e.g. diphtheria-tetanus-polio and measles-mumps-rubella, along with hepatitis A and typhoid. Malarial prophylaxis is not usually required for trips in the mountains, however if you are visiting rural and remote low lying areas then they might be necessary. On holidays to more remote areas you should also have a dentist check up. A good online resource is Travel Health Pro.

The unit of currency in Nepal is the Nepalese Rupee.

We recommend you check if you require an adaptor for your electrical items at:

http://www.worldstandards.eu/electricity/plugs-and-sockets/

It makes a lot of sense to spend some time before coming on a trekking holiday getting some additional exercise. The fitter you are, after all, the more enjoyable you will find the experience. We suggest that you adopt a weekly exercise regime leading up to your trip. Regular hiking in hill country is the best training but jogging, squash and swimming are also good for developing cardio vascular fitness and stamina. We also suggest you do some reading about the culture of Nepal and its various ethnic groups.

As a reputable tour operator, KE supports the British Foreign & Commonwealth Offices ‘Know before you go’ campaign to enable British citizens to prepare for their journeys overseas, and we recommend that all KE travellers take a look at the FCO Travel Advice for their chosen destination on the official FCO website: www.fco.gov.uk. North Americans can also check out the U.S. Department of State website: www.travel.state.gov for essential travel advice and tips.

KE treat the safety and security of all clients as the most important aspect of any trip we organise. We would not run any trip that we did not consider reasonably safe.  Should the FCO advise against travel for any reason, we will contact everyone booked to travel to discuss the situation.  We receive regular updates direct from the FCO and are in constant touch with our contacts on the ground.  If you have any questions about government travel advice, please call our office.

October to November and March to May are the best times for trekking in Nepal. These months either side of the summer monsoon season are neither too hot in the foothills nor too cold in the higher elevations. Pre-monsoon is the time to see the colourful blooms of the rhododendron at lower elevations. The post-monsoon months usually offer the clearest skies and the most settled weather. At either of these periods you will encounter a wide range of daytime temperatures during your trip from approximately 25ºC in Kathmandu to approximately 14ºC at 3000 metres and approximately 3ºC at 5000m. The ‘real feel’ temperature in the middle of the day will be much warmer than this. At night in the rarefied air the temperatures plummet. You can expect to experience overnight temperatures below freezing once above approximately 4200 metres and at our highest camps night time temperatures may drop as low as minus 10 or more rarely to minus 15ºC. Extended periods of rain or snow are very unlikely outside of the monsoon period but short lived storms can and do occur.

  • Trekking and Climbing in Nepal. Steve Razzetti. New Holland

  • Annapurna, a trekkers guide – Kev Reynolds, Cicerone

  • Trekking in Nepal. Stephen Bezruchka

  • Trekking in the Nepal Himalaya. Stan Armington

  • Trekking in Nepal, West Tibet and Bhutan. Hugh Swift

  • Kathmandu and the Kingdom of Nepal. Prakash Raj

  • Insight Guide to Nepal

  • Adventure Treks Nepal. Bill O’Connor

Annapurna Adventure Trekking Map - 1:125,000. National Geographic & Nepa

Nowadays the best maps of Nepal tend to be produced in Nepal. This map is a collaboration between the Nepal publishers Nepa; and National Geographic. It covers the whole of the Annapurna Circuit and the Sanctuary.

Extend Your Holiday

Chitwan Jungle Extension

The jungles of southern Nepal are an interesting counterpoint to trekking in the foothills or the high Himalaya. Tiger Tops Tharu Lodge provides a relaxing and comfortable base for a wildlife safari and cultural village experience. During two days of wildlife viewing in the Chitwan National Park 'buffer zone' - the interface area between visitors and the animals that live at Chitwan – you will be accompanied by expert guides on safaris by jeep, boat, on foot and by elephant back.



Tiger Tops Tharu Lodge Chitwan

From $1000 per person

More info

Tiger Mountain Resort Pokhara

Tiger Mountain Pokhara Lodge sets the standard for comfortable and luxurious mountain lodge accommodation with its relaxed atmosphere, tranquil setting, eco-tourism and conservation ethos. Located on a spectacular hilltop ridge, it has panoramic views of ‘Fishtail Mountain and Himalayan giants, Dhaulagiri, Annapurna and Manaslu. It has won several prestigious awards including the PATA Heritage and Culture Gold Award and the Conde Nast Traveler magazine Ecotourism Award.

Tiger Mountain, exit Pokhara

From $680 per person

More info

Kathmandu Tour - Nagarkot and Bhaktapur

The Kathmandu Valley contains the cities of Patan, Bhaktapur and Kathmandu itself, all of which were once independent kingdoms. An exploration of the valley’s historic and cultural sights is an excellent way to begin or end your adventure in Nepal. Highlights of this tour includes a very early drive up to Nagarkot on the Kathmandu Valley rim, the perfect place to watch a Himalayan sunrise. This is followed by a tour of the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Bhaktapur, renowned for its temples and traditional buildings. 

 

Nagarkot and Bhaktaphur Tour

From $135 per person

More info

Malla Hotel

From $100 per room per night

Gokarna Forest Resort Kathmandu

From $138 per room per night

Shanker Hotel

From $100 per room per night

Situated next to the grounds of the former Royal Palace and only a 10-minute walk from the popular Thamel district, this former Rana residence was converted into a hotel in 1964. The original architecture was based on a French palace and the hotel has a grand appearance. Set in a large and beautifully tended garden, it provides a hideaway from the hustle and bustle of city life and is an ideal base from which to explore Kathmandu. All its rooms which are en-suite have been recently refurbished and the hotel facilities include 2 restaurants, 2 bars and a swimming pool where you can also order drinks.

Shangri La

From $119 per room per night Another of Kathmandu’s original ‘luxury’ hotels. While the sophistication of its amenities may be upstaged by Kathmandu’s more modern concrete and glass hotels, the Shangri La maintains an old world charm that cannot be beaten. Located in the diplomatic enclave of Lazimpat, away from the hustle and bustle yet just 10 minutes walk from tourist centre of Thamel, the hotel is set in a pleasant garden and facilities include a pool, tennis court and massage therapist. The hotel has a speciality Indian restaurant and a garden café serving international cuisine as well as a bar.

Dwarikas Hotel

From $279 per room per night Dwarika’s is a heritage hotel modelled on the grandeur of the palaces of the Newar Kings. Consisting of several buildings arranged around a quiet courtyard, the hotel incorporates many original 15th – 17th century features in its architecture from the lifetime collection of its founder. The rooms are in the same Newari style and lavishly luxurious in their appointments. Its location close to Pashupathinath and Bouddhanath is perfect for exploring this side of Kathmandu. There are 3 restaurants serving Nepali, Japanese and international cuisine, a bar, spa and fitness centre, and a swimming pool.

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