Manaslu Circuit Trek

Manaslu Circuit Trek Highlights

Larke Pass and Snow Capped Mountains

You will be accompanied by the more than ten peaks which are more preponderant than 6500m in altitudes such as Himalchuli (7,893m), Ngadi Chuli (7879m), Shringi (7187m) and Mt Manaslu (8163m) itself, sounds awe-inspiring right? Oh, and the Larke pass at 5160m gives you the breathtaking views of Himalayas and you don’t optate to leave this place and get on with your mundane daily routine.

Geographical and Cultural Diversity

If you optate to experience the raw adventure and amalgamation of Tibetan and Nepali culture then this is an impeccable trek for you. Dense forest to snow-capped mountains, authentic Buddhist people with their Buddhist culture in underdeveloped and beautiful Tsum Valley,  Not so reliable suspension bridges across the Buri Gandaki river, this trek offers you virtually everything. Fascinating right? Exquisite sound of the river flowing along with the waterfalls are always there so that you don’t feel tired and demotivate from time to time. Who needs friends when you got this much beauty to give company?

One of the remote trek of Nepal

I am still astonished how this trail is not discerned as one of the best by the trekking agency and Nepal Tourism board. So much to offer with very less budget but still not given the credit it deserves. Maybe people don’t like the more frugal places, extravagant one better one, I conjecture.  It is off the beaten path and part of the great Himalayan trail and very close  to the Kathmandu city.

A possibility of the Side Trips

You just want to spend more time on the Himalayas, Tadaaa you have came in right place to trek! Manaslu base camp, Birendra Lake, Tsum Valley, Kal lake, Pungent Gomba, Do I require to verbally express it anymore? If you have gut feeling,money in the pocket and time with you then make this journey longer and memorable one.

Part of the Great Himalayan Trail

GHT( Great Himalayan Trail) is one of the single trekking routes that go from east to the west of Nepal covering the distance of virtually 1700km. Manaslu Himal is country’s best-kept secret for a long time. That’s true, the best things are found in the place which is less verbalized and less talked about. Manaslu circuit made me realized that.

Three Highlights of the Manaslu Circuit

  • It was a feeling blessed and excited to be accompanied by such resplendent mountains and greeted by the amicable, caring people and to consummate the trip in a very less expense in compare to the ABC and EBC.
  • A more proximate look to authentic Nepali and Tibetian culture during the trek
  • Less crowded than Annapurna Base Camp and Everest Base Camp

Risks/Perils Involved in the Manaslu Circuit Trek

  • This trail is plenary of suspension bridges, landslide trails and flooded area so you have to to take your steps slow and minuscule during some of the places.
  • You have to take a friend or experienced guide with you to trek this circuit because the weather and the trail are very much capricious  here.
  • One thing is sure, this is not a place to commence your trekking journey. You have to be mentally physically and mentally fit some extent otherwise altitude sickness, nausea, headache will never leave whole time during the trek.

Number of Days for Manaslu Circuit.

It is totally your call how long you optate to make your trip. Lower Manaslu can be consummated in the 10 to 12 days. Manaslu Circuit can be consummated in the 15 to 18 days and Manaslu Circuit with the Tsum Valley can be consummated in the 20 to 22 days. You will have to walk like 15 to 20 km per day during the Manaslu circuit trek, that doesn’t denote you will be ambulating and moving your body perpetually whole time. It’s not possible for the human body. We have to cover around 170km during the whole journey so you just can’t get out from your bed and come to this trek. Prepare your body for this.

The commencement point of the Journey is  Arughat Bazar and ending point is the Besisahar which is the commencement point of the Annapurna Circuit. You can take the jeep from the Dharapani while the return if your body has lost all its energy.

Times to trek the Manaslu Circuit

Autumn season(September – November) is considered as the best time to trek the Manaslu Circuit as the trails as the skies are the clearer, warm at the lower altitudes, no fogs and rain to make our trek boring and difficult.

If you optate to evade the crowd you can trek during the Spring season ( March-May) as you will be able to witness resplendent flower relishes Rhododendron as it is the season for flowers. The whole forest will be covered by the comely flowers and it is the scene you don’t want to miss.

It’s not like you cannot trek this circuit during the rainy and winter season but you know how much pain the ass it can be during the muddy trails and cold weather in such high altitude.

Don’t be a hero trying this trail during winter or rainy season cause nature will show what are we in front of them. It’s better not to take the risks cause nature will not give you second chance.

Entry  points/Modes of Convey/ Costs Involved

The entry point to the Manaslu Circuit is the Soti Khola Via Arughat. You can take a local bus from Kathmandu to reach Arughat via Dhading Besi which is 6 to 7-hour long journey. At Arughat you can take a local jeep or private jeep to reach Soti Khola. The roads after the Arughat is not so smooth as you expected. Immensely narrow roads and  get stuck when two jeeps emanate from the opposite side. It will cost you like 10USD to 15USD per person on the local bus. It is the fine-tuned price but it can elevate up to 20USD during on season. It will take like 200USD to 250USD in the jeep for the six to seven people.

Exit Points/ Modes of Convey/ Costs Involved

Dharapani, Besisahar is the exit points of the Manaslu Circuit. You can take private jeeps to reach Besi Sahar from Dharapani. You can take a local bus and jeeps to reach Pokhara and Kathmandu from Besisahar. No facility of the local bus in Dharapani you have to take jeeps from Dharapani to Besisahar which will costs you like 20USD to 25 USD. You can take a local bus from Besisahar to Kathmandu to Pokhara which will cost like 10USD and 5USD

Manaslu Circuit as a Tea-House trek

Manaslu Circuit Trek can be taken as the Tea-house trek after 2010 as there are ample numbers of tea-houses and lodges during the trek. You can still take the tent and do camping trek but it will increment expenses of your trek and stress as you have to carry extra weight with you. The only time you will require the tent is when you decide to spend the night in Manaslu Base camp and Larke pass.

Cost and Accommodation

You will be spending like 20USD to 40USD on a food, accommodation, electricity and hot shower. Since it is not commercialized the rooms are assuredly frugal with 6USD to 9USD per night. Lodges provided you offer that if you had supper and snacks there they will provide you with a room free of cost. What a lucrative marketing to attract the trekkers, right?

Foods are little bit pricey as it is carried out by the mule or porters (5USD per day).

Cost of the Snacks: 5USD per day

Cost of the Drinks: 2 to 5USD per day

Sundry Cost such as charging the electronic contrivances, sultry shower, tips to guide and porter will cost you like 100 to 150USD for the whole trip.

Sanctions and Their Costs Required for this Trek

Sanctions and cost depend on the number of days you are travelling to this day. There are two costs according to seasons. One is during the peak season and another cost is during the offseason. Manaslu Circuits cuts two districts Manaslu and Annapurna District so you have to take permits from two districts.

Manaslu Restricted Permits

Manaslu trek sanction costs USD 70.00 for first seven days and USD 10.00 each day during September to November

Manaslu trek sanction costs USD 50.00 for first 7 days and USD 7.00 each extra day during 

December to August.

Manaslu Conservation Area Sanction (MCAP)

Ingression fee for SAARC Nationals is Nepali Currency 200 per person and for other Nationals is Nepali Currency 2,000 per person.

Annapurna Conservation Area Sanction (ACAP)

Ingress fee for SAARC Nationals is Nepali Currency 200 per person and for other Nationals is Nepali Currency 2,000 per person.

Tsum Valley Restricted Sanction (Optional: if you optate to go to the Tsum Valley)

If you optate the Tsum Valley trek, it costs USD 35 for each person per week.

No TIMS ( Trekker’s Information Management System) required for the Manaslu Circuit but if you are orchestrating to elongate your trip to Annapurna Circuit then get your TIMS as soon as possible.

A permit is only applicable to 2 or a group of people. You cannot trek Manaslu Trek alone as the trek is remotely arduous and has life-threatening route and weather. So you require someone virtually each and every time to look after you.

Note:

  • Entry fee is not required for children under 10 years.
  •  Trekkers need to carry individual entry permit to visit the Annapurna Conservation Area(ACA) and Manaslu Conservation Area (MCA).
  • 4 passport size photographs are required while applying for the entry permit.
  • For the Manaslu Trek TIMS (Trekking Information Management System), a card is not required as you already have special trekking in entry permit. But if you optate to perpetuate your journey to Annapurna Base Camp or Jomsom, Muktinath and culminate up at Pokhara you will require a TIMS card.

Terms and Conditions:

  • This entry sanction is valid for individual trekkers only. It is non-refundable and non-transferable.
  • The sanction holder can enter the culled places within the Conservation Area only.
  • A person entering the Conservation Area must abide by the regulations made under the National Park and Wildlife Conservation Act, 2029 B.S. (1973)
  • This entry sanction needs to be carried during the entire trip and should be shown to concerned personnel of the Conservation Area if they optate to check it.

The arduousness and difficulties of the Trek

Manaslu trek requires some kind of fitness and phrenic preparation. You cannot just come to this trek when you physcially exercise  very less in one day. You require some fitness, some preparation and an abundance of dedication to consummate this trek. You require a guide or a friend to consummate this trek.

Highes point  in the Manaslu Circuit Trek

Larke Pass at an altitude of the 5106m is the apex of the Manaslu Circuit trek. Mission accomplished Right!

 Itinerary for the Manaslu Circuit Trek

Lower Manaslu Circuit Trek can be consummated on 10 days. There are a fortnight and 17 days itinerary for the Manaslu circuit and it consummately depends on how you decided to go for it, but the 17 days one is the classic and most popular one. If you are orchestrating for Tsum Valley Manaslu circuit then it will take like 20 to 22 days.

DayDay to Day ItineraryElevationTrek Hour

1
Drive from Kathmandu to Arughat (private jeep or local bus)600m2,328 ft7-8 hour drive
2Trek from Arughat to Lapubeshi970m3,051 ft8-9 hours trek
3Trek from Lapubeshi to Tatopani990m4,625 ft6-7 hours trek
4Trek from Tatopani to Jagat1,350m5,917 ft6-7 hours trek
5Trek from Jagat to Ekle Bhatti1,610m8,626 ft6-7 hours trek
6Trek from Ekle Bhatti to Bihi Phedi2,000m11,578ft6-7 hours trek
7Trek from Bihe Phedi to Namrung2,650m11,578ft6-7 hours trek
8Trek from Namrung to Lho3,180m12,660ft4-5 hours trek
9Trek from Lho to Sama Gaon3,530m12,660ft8-9 hours trek
10Acclimatization-rest day in Sama Gaon (trip to MBC, Birendra Lake)3,530m12,660ft4-5 hours trek
11Sama Gaon to Samdo3,700m12,139ft8-10 hours trek
12Acclimatization rest & rest day in Samdo (side trip to Tibetan border)3,700m12,139ft5-6 hours trek
13Trek from Samdo to Dharmashala4,450m14,599ft4-5 hours trek
14Trek from Dharmashala to Bhimtang via Larke Pass (16,929ft)3,700m12,139ft8-10 hours trek
15Trek from Bhimtang to Tiliche2300m7,545 ft7-8 hours trek
16Trek from Tiliche to Tal1430m4,951 ft5-6 hours trek
17Drive From Tal to Kathmandu via Beshishar (Jeep, Bus, or Car)1,300m4,265 ft7-9 hours drive
Alternative Route to Manaslu Circuit Trek

Nepal Goverment  promulgated to construct the pathway between the Tibet and Nepal from the Tsum Valley and this has affected the trails between two areas Sotikhola and Jagat. During the 1st day trek, the classic trail in Lapubesi has been superseded by the hike in the Budigandaki river. During the walk from Macchikhola ta Kholabesi and Tadapani, the trail of Khorlabesi has been superseded by the hike in the 1hour uphill hike to the Kerauja.

All the construction work had been monitored by the Nepal Army and trekkers are allowed  to pass the area from 11:00 am to 1:00 pm and 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm during the construction phase.

The classical trail takes you from the west side of the river, now the alternative trail will take you from the east side of the river. Manabu-Yartsa-Kasigaun-Keraunja-Runchet-Hulchuk-Dobhan-Jagat is the route taken by local people mostly and the alternative trail taken to avoid the hassle from the construction works.

Difficulties of the Alternative Trail
  • Victuals options constrained and tea houses are not well facilitated
  • Guide and porter may not be able to give you detailed information about this place.
  • You will require the extra day
  • Distance to covered will be longer which can be hectic for some trekkers.
Itinerary in the a fortnight Manaslu circuit If we take the alternative trail

Day 01: Kathmandu to either Sotikhola or Manbu by local bus (about 8-9 hour and private jeep 6-7 hour) 

Day 02: Trek from Sotikhola to Kashigaun (via Manbu).  Lunch at Yarsa and overnight homestay in Kashigaun (7-8 hours) 

 Day 03: Trek from Kashigaun to Runchet.  Lunch at Kerauja and overnight in Runchet (7-8 hours) 

Day04: Trek from Runchet to Jagat or Dobhan via Yaru (8-9 hours) 

Day 05: Trek from Jagat to Deng (6-7 hours)

Day 06: Trek from Deng to Namrung – 2630m (6-7 hours)

Day 07: Trek from Namrung to Sama Gaon – 3530m (6-7 hours)

Day 08: Rest day and side trip to Manaslu Base Camp (MBC) or Bihendra Lake – 3,530m (6-7 hours)

Day 09: Trek from Sama Gaon to Samdo – 3860m (4-5 hours)

Day 10: Rest day and side trip to Tibetan border or day hike – 3860m (8-9 hours)

Day 11: Trek from Samdo to Dharmasala – 4460m (4-5 hours)

Day 12: Trek from Dharmasala to Bimthang Via Larke pass – 5160m (8-10 hours)

Day 13: Trek from Bimthang to Tilije – 1700m (5-6 hours)

Day 14: Trek from Tilije to Dharapani – 1080m (5-6 hours)

Day 15:  Drive From Tal to Kathmandu (Jeep, Bus, or Car) – 1300m (7-9 hour drive)

Attractions of the Manaslu Circuit Trek
  1. Namla Gompa

This hugely tall, yellow in colour gompa is just 20 mins away from the Namrung Village. Earthquake hit these places deplorably and it was later renovated by the local people and government. This gompa lies in the dense forest and you have to climb for the first 10 mins to reach the place. It was headed and taken care by the 12 Gelukpa monks who fled from the Tibet after it was invaded by China. It is considered as the domicile of the Nam Lha Rinpoche. Keys to the gompa are kept safely by the local people and there is an astronomically immense big prayer wheel on the side of the Gompa.

      2)  Namrung Gompa

This is the go-to place for the people of Namrung village because it is situated right in the village. This gompa is an old one and it is optically canvassed by the old man who lives in the diminutive hut and he has kept the keys to the gompa in his neck. If you ask him politely about the gompa he will be more than ecstatic to give a tour to the gompa and expound about its history and importance. Guru Rinpoche is the main idol and Guru Namjena and Guru Fabo Genesij sit in the side. Roofs are the concrete stones tiled together, walls are composed of the woods and they are stitched together by not so vigorous mud.

Sidetrips
  1. Serang Gompa(3100m)

If you are going to the Serang Gomba then you should be prepared with some foods and it is better to stay overnight at the Serang as it takes like 5 to 6 hours to reach the Gompa and returning the same day can be very tiring. No quandary with the pre-booking as this place is most of the time less crowded and most of the trekker do not take this as one of their must-go places. This place is referred to as the land of jubilance and Buddhist people additionally considered this place as the obnubilated and happy land. This Gompa was handcrafted by the monk that lives in the Bihi village at the around 15th century. It holds the statue of Guru Padmasambhava on the middle with Gautam Buddha at the left and Karmapa at the right.

It’s an off beaten track so you will not be facilitated by the tea houses in this place. You have to be nice with local people and monk for a night stay here. Kindness can be helpful sometimes during the trek, right?

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