We will meet you at Kathmandu airport and transfer you to your hotel in Kathmandu. Relax at your hotel, explore the bustling streets of Kathmandu and get ready for your trek.
Overnight: Kathmandu deluxe hotel
Fly to Pokhara & Trek to Tikhedhunga
An early morning 45 minute flight past the Western Nepali Himalaya to Pokhara is a great way to start the day. From Pokhara a one hour drive brings you to the start of your trek at Nayapul. Sublime trekking through green terraced fields and villages brings you to Tikhedhunga.
Trek: 3-4 hours, 540m ascent
Overnight: Tikhedhunga trekking lodge (1540m) (B,L,D)
Trek to Ghorapani (2850m)
A cracking day of trekking as you slip into the rhythm of our trek and the snow capped Himalayas reveal themselves. The route winds through rhododendron and oak forests before reaching Ghorepani.
Trek: 4-6 hours, 1360m ascent
Overnight: Ghorepani trekking lodge (2850m) (B,L,D)
Poon Hill & Trek to Tadapani
An amazing pre-dawn trek to Poon Hill reveals a stunning sunrise over the Himalaya. One of the finest views you are ever likely to enjoy.
After a well earned breakfast your trek continues to Tadapani through pine and rhododendron forests.
Trek: Poon Hill: 1.5 hours, 400m ascent/descent.
To Tadapani: 5-6 hours, 550 descent, 710m ascent
Overnight: Tadapani trekking lodge (2590m) (B,L,D)
Trek to Chomrong (2210m)
You can look forward to a varied day of trekking today via either Ghandruk or Gurajun to join the main trail to Annapurna base Camp at Taglung. A stone staircase brings you to Chomrong.
Trek: 3-4 hours, 600m ascent, 900m descent
Overnight: Chomrong trekking lodge (2210m) (B,L,D)
Trek to Doban (2505m)
The trail continues up the steep sided Modi Khola valley via Sinuwa and Bamboo to Doban.
Trek: 4.5 - 5.5 hours, 700m ascent, 500m descent
Overnight: Doban trekking lodge (2505m) (B,L,D)
Trek to Deurali (3140m)
The day begins with the trail winding through bamboo forest, before you climb gradually but steadily to the open spaces above treeline. After hiking across a grassy pasture at Tomo (8,400' / 2545m), you reach the narrowest point in the canyon, Panchenin Barha, the natural “gate” to the sanctuary, with its small trailside shrine.
Before 1956, no one of low caste, no foreigners, and no “impure” foods such as pork, beef, chicken, garlic, and eggs were allowed beyond this shrine into the sacred confines of the Annapurna Sanctuary.
Trek: 3.5 - 4.5 hours, 750m ascent
Overnight: Local trekking lodge (3140m) (B, L, D)
DAY 8: Machhapuchhare Base Camp (3680m)
This day is shorter, to aid acclimitisation. The gorge widens as you finally feast your eyes upon the full glory of the Annapurna Sanctuary. Ahead of you lies the lateral moraine of South Annapurna Glacier, with the Modi Khola flowing to our right.
Reach your home for the night, Machhapuchhare Base Camp (3680m), site of a 1957 British Expedition to Machhapuchhare that climbed to within 200' of the summit. Because the peak is sacred to the Gurung people and considered the home of a Gurung goddess, Nepal's government subsequently declared it off limits to climbers and it has remained unclimbed since.
The is the option a walk in the afternoon, up the trail, to aid acclimitisation.
Trek: 2.5 - 3 hours, 500m ascent
Overnight: Local trekking lodge (3680m) (B, L, D)
Trek to Annapurna Base Camp (4130m) and descend to Doban (2505m)
Wake up early in the morning for your final ascent to Annapurna Base Camp. The trail contours the broad,
grassy, and sometimes snow-covered valley. When you reach base camp you
are surrounded by a 360-degree panorama of incredible Himalayan peaks:
Hiunchuli, Annapurna South, Fang, Annapurna II, Roc Noir, Glacier Dome,
Gangapurna, Annapurna III, and Machhapuchhare.
After some time taking in the incredible views, begin your descent. Pass back through Machhapucharre Base Camp and, after you enjoy our last views of the Annapurna Sanctuary, head out the “gate” and follow your outward track back down the valley to Doban.
Trek: 7.5 - 8 hours, 500 metres ascent followed by 1720m descent
Overnight: Local trekking lodge (2505m) (B, L, D)
Trek to Jhinu Danda
You continue downhill, then detour off your former trail and head steeply down to the "New Bridge" on the Modi Khola. From here, the route flattens out somewhat until reaching the small settlement of lodges, known as Jhinu Danda. There is a small hot spring so bring a bathing suit if you’d like to take a dip!
Trek: 6 - 7 hours, 900m descent, 550m ascent
Overnight: Jhinu Danda trekking lodge (1780m) (B, L, D)
Trek to Birethani (1080m) & drive to Pokhara
The final day on the trail contours through fields and villages to Biethani, where you will meet your transport for the drive back to Pokhara. The lakeside town of Pokhara is the perfect place to relax, enjoy a cold beer or browse the Tibetan curio market.
Trek: 5 - 6 hours, 1000m descent, 300m ascent
Overnight: Pokhara deluxe hotel (1150m) (B, L)
Fly to Kathmandu, Heritage Tour
After breakfast you fly back to Kathmandu. Upon arrival a tour of Kathmandu awaits you. The capital of Nepal is a fascinating city bursting with energy. Your guide will take you on a journey exploring the classic sights such as Durbar Square, Swayambhunath and Patan as well as those hidden gems only the locals know. Your trip ends with a farewell dinner at a traditional Nepali restaurant.
Overnight: Kathmandu deluxe hotel, (1300 m) (B, D)
Transfer to the International airport for your final departure from Kathmandu (B). Post and Pre-nights can be arranged in Kathmandu and/or Pokhara.
Extra nights and extensions
If you would prefer a more relaxed trek to Annapurna Base Camp we would recommend adding an extra night at Annapurna Base Camp which allows for some wonderful walks in the area. On the way down an extra night at Himalaya and Ghandruk make the descent much easier.
You should also consider adding additional nights in both Pokhara and Kathmandu to allow yourself extra time to explore. Other popular extensions include Chitwan National Park, Birethani and Seti River rafting/float.
Availability and Time of Year
The trekking season in the Annapurna region runs from the end of September to May. The most popular times are October/November, when the post monsoon mountain air is clear and fresh, and March to April when the weather is dry and pleasant and the rhododendrons bloom. You can start your trip on any date in the season.
Average daytime temperatures between
October-November and April-May range from approximately 25c in Kathmandu to
approx. 14c at 3000m, and approximately 3c at 5000m. From December through to
April, the temperatures will be about 5c lower.
Night time temperatures are lower and will
get to below freezing once above 3000m.
Single Rooms and Solo Walkers
Unfortunately this trip is not available to solo walkers, however if you do require single rooms within your party we would be happy to accommodate you, although there is a single room supplement payable.
Grade & Terrain
This holiday is graded moderate to strenuous, due to the fairly long days at high altitude. You should be in good physical fitness and have experience of multi-day trekking or walking prior to undertaking the Annapurna Sanctuary Trek. The effect of altitude should not be underestimated.
The trails are generally well maintained and a good walking surface although the going can be slippery and wet in places and stone staircases steep.
Altitude Sickness & Trekking at Altitude
Acute Mountain Sickness or Altitude Sickness is a major concern when
trekking in Nepal and although our itinerary is designed to minimise the
chances of you suffering from AMS each individual is affected
differently by altitude. The majority of trekkers will suffer from at
least mild altitude sickness.
Your leaders are all trained in dealing with AMS but your
health is your responsibility and you should educate yourself on AMS. If
you have any pre-existing health conditions that you think may make you
more susceptible to AMS we recommend that you consult your doctor
before booking this trip. You should also report any illness to your
guide right away.
While trekking you will only have to carry a day bag with water, snacks, spare clothes and your camera. Your main bag will be moved by a porter. We ask you to limit your luggage to one bag of up to 15kg per person. It is possible to store excess luggage at your hotel in Kathmandu. We will supply you with a detailed equipment list as part of your pre-departure information pack. You will need normal walking and travelling gear as well as a sleeping bag and warm clothes. Trekking equipment is available to hire in Kathmandu.
Your Guide & Porters
Quality guides make the difference between a great trip and an unforgettable experience. Our Nepali guides are qualified and trained. All have many years experience of guiding trekkers in Nepal, and speak fluent English.
They bring a wealth of knowledge to your journey, opening your eyes to the legends, culture, food, flora and fauna of the Himalayas. Additionally they are first aid trained and trained and experienced in dealing with cases of Altitude Sickness.
Your luggage will be transported by porters (1 porter between 2 people).
Air Travel in Nepal
Due to the nature of our treks in Nepal, access to the start point is often only possible by taking an internal flight. Flying in Nepal is an acknowledged risk due to the changeable nature of mountain weather and the fact that the Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal does not operate to the same standards as those of the UK and other western nations. However, we have taken steps to ensure that our customers travelling to Nepal are as safe as they can possibly be by becoming stakeholders in an independent air audit of Nepal airlines undertaken by UK tour operators in 2015. This audit deemed several airlines as safe to fly to with including Yeti Airlines and Tara Air, and our itineraries will only include flights with these particular airlines. Tara and Yeti Airlines have also fulfilled the IATA Standard Safety Assessment (ISSA) which is a new global safety standard for commercial airlines operating smaller aircraft. Whilst we have taken the above steps, you should be aware that flying in mountainous areas like Nepal does carry with it a certain amount of risk. If you would like to find out further information on flying on Nepal and the associated risks, you can read advice on the UK Foreign Office Nepal Travel Advice page.
The distances and ascents/descents are approximations of the recommended routes. Please be prepared by packing all necessary items, (for example, proper rain gear jacket and pants, sun hat, sunscreen). Your information pack has a detailed equipment list which includes standard walking gear such as good walking boots or shoes, warm and waterproof clothes for the cooler months and lightweight clothing for summer, and a day pack.
Please be aware that you need a tourist visa for Nepal to enter. You can get this upon arrival at Kathmandu airport, where a few forms need to be filled out before you can go through customs. You will need to make sure you have the right amount of USD with you and two passport photos in order to obtain your visa. Alternatively Nepali embassies will also issue visas.
Flights to Kathmandu
Flights to Kathmandu are available daily from the UK and Europe via the Gulf or India. Airlines include Jet Airways, Gulf Air, Qatar Airways & Etihad Airways. Kathmandu is also very well served from North America and Australasia.
Travel insurance which includes evacuation cover and covers trekking to the altitude of Annapurna Base Camp (4130m) is a requirement for this trip.