A quieter trek of an 8000m peak, the Manaslu is the more discerning choice to the Annapurna Circuit. This tour involves some of the best mountain walking in the world. This customisable trek involves tough days, but with stupendous views of Himalayan peaks as well as opportunities to experience villages with unspoiled Tibetan culture.

Key information

Destinations Destinations Kathmandu, Manaslu region
Activity Activity Culture, Active, Trekking
Physical Level Physical Level Strenuous
Season Season September - May

Suggested itinerary

Arrive Kathmandu

Arrive Kathmandu

Day 1 in Kathmandu

Arrive at Tribhuvan International Airport, where you’ll be met and receive a private transfer to the Hotel. Get a briefing and enjoy dinner in the city. A special permit ($500 USD) is required for this trek, so it’s required to present hard copies of your passport by 10:00hrs to the permit issuing office. The office is open Sunday-Thursday, Friday Mornings, closed Saturday/public holidays. This requires extra days in Kathmandu.

Drive to Soti Khola

Drive to Soti Khola

Day 2 in Soti Khola

It's a full days drive today as a private vehicle takes you from Kathmandu along the main highway to then turn toward the mountains on a road that follows the Burhi Gandakhi Valley. At some stage (usually around Arghat) you’ll take a locally chartered jeep in order to reach Soti Khola.

Trek to Machha Khola and on to Doban

Trek to Machha Khola and on to Doban

Day 3–4 in Machha Khola

The climate remains sub-tropical and the altitude remains low as you begin the circuit of Manaslu by essentially following the river to the Machha Khola (930m). Although still low, there is both uphill and downhill walking, but nothing like what will come later in the journey. Approx. 7hrs walking.

On the second day, you’ll cross over the Machha Khola River and up to Tatopani, across a suspension bridge to the other side of the valley and through forests to Doban (1070m). Around 5hrs walking.

Walk to Philim

Walk to Philim

Day 5 in Philim

It's a steep (but relatively short) climb up to Louri and then just over an hour’s walk to Jagat (1410m). Trekking permits having been checked, a stone-stepped trail descends to the river followed by an ascent through terraced fields to Saguleri and a further climb to Philim. Around 6hrs walking.

Trek to Deng

Trek to Deng

Day 6 in Deng

Beyond Chisopani the trail follows the hillside and you’ll see pine forests. The train cuts into the walls of a gorge and then goes up and along to Deng (1860m). Walking time approx 5hrs.

Walk to Namrung

Walk to Namrung

Day 7 in Namrung

The valley you're ascending is quite steep-sided and the first signs of the Buddhist influence begin to appear. There are several river crossings (by bridge) today and after around 6-7hrs of fairly tough trekking you reach Namrung (2540m)

Trek to Lho

Trek to Lho

Day 8 in Lho

Today is not as long of a day, as you'll be going over 3000m. Heading deeper, as the valley opens out there's a steep climb to Lihi (2925m) and the villages become more Tibetan influenced. Manaslu will be visible today, and the twin peaks will be evident. Your walk to today’s destination of Lho (3150m) will likely take around 4-5hrs of walking.

Trek to Samdo and acclimatise

Trek to Samdo and acclimatise

Day 9–10 in Samdo

Today the trek leads up through pine forests followed by some downhill walking, then a gradual ascent to reach Sama Gaon (3520m). As you follow the Burhi Gandaki, the scenery starts to become particularly impressive. Samdo (3690m) is today’s destination and requires around 6-7hrs of challenging walking. The village was established by Tibetan refugees and Tibet is a days walk away.

On your second day it's a good idea to help your acclimatisation by walking to a higher altitude and then back down to Samdo for the night. You can climb up to the ridge behind Samdu to do this. It is a stiff, steep ascent but does provide some excellent vistas.

Trek to Larkya Phedi

Trek to Larkya Phedi

Day 11 in Larkya Glacier

Heading towards the Larkya Glacier, today is primarily all uphill as you trek to Larkya Phedi, which is also confusingly known as Dharamsala and Duwang. Altitude is approximately 4460m. The lodge here is particularly basic. Although it’s only about 6km from Somdu to here, the higher altitude means progress is slow. Approximately 3-5hrs walking.

Larkya La Crossing to Bimthang

Larkya La Crossing to Bimthang

Day 12 in Larkya La Pass

This is the hardest/longest day of walking, as well as the highest point. The Larkya La crossing takes 8-10hrs, conditions permitting. After a steep climb leaving Larkya Phedi, you walk steadily upwards 5hrs. Prayer flags line the pass and the temperature is usually quite cold. Enjoy the views, then begin the steep descent down scree on your way to Bimthang (3590m).

Down to Dharapani

Down to Dharapani

Day 13 in Dharapani

You’ll drop into Burdin Khola Valley, followed by some uphill. Then it’s downhill again and into woodlands, then an ascent to the Karche La. Below lies the Marsyangdi Valley and your exit route. A lot more downhill will make your knees ache, but after approximately 8hrs you reach Dharapani (1963m). Now, you've joined the Annapurna Circuit.

Dharapani to Kathmandu and depart

Dharapani to Kathmandu and depart

Day 14–15 in Kathmandu

Using locally chartered 4x4 vehicle(s) you'll travel to Besisahar via a bumpy/dusty road, and from Besisahar the road is tarmac. It’s a long day, so this journey can be broken up with a stay at The Old Inn at Bandipur. However, it’s probably necessary to add some additional contingency days, in case of delays/difficulties.

A private transfer will take you to the airport for your return international flight

Where to stay

Many treks feature accommodation in trekking lodges, historically called "teahouses" in Nepal. About 85% of people who go trekking in Nepal are undertaking a teahouse trek. These are usually independent, family owned affairs. They are usually very small, simple and basic.

The teahouses are often remote and isolated, with absolutely everything carried in and carried out, or sourced locally.

Usually all meals are included on your trek. Although meals provided by the teahouses will vary, it is always plentiful in quantity.

Teahouse

Chisapani Teahouse lodge

Teahouses are Nepal's traditional trekking accommodation. They're usually family-owned and basic but they provide welcome shelter from the elements and a warm meal!

Simple

Hotel Karuna

A friendly, family run hotel located close to the "Lakeside Strip" of Pokhara. A very pleasant, relaxed place to stay.

Simple

Thasang Comfort Lodge

A fairly new comfort lodge, dramatically perched high above the Kali Gandaki Valley with sensational views, and comfy rooms (proper beds, bathroom, electricity etc).

Simple

Annapurna Comfort Lodge

Set in the heart of Kagbeni on a narrow cobbled street with real Mustang locals for neighbours, this place is basic but cosy and comfortable and beats the usual 'teahouses' hands down.

Classic

KGH Hotel

The original Kathmandu Guest House, updated as a comfortable hotel to 3* standard. It's slap bang in the middle of Thamel and surrounded by excellent dining options.

Book this itinerary

This route booked with one of our specialist tour operators would cost from $1,645pp. Pricing varies by accommodation class, and can be tailored to suit your budget.

Pricing is typically inclusive of hotels, transfers, meals, and all guided excursions and activities.

Learn more

Contact us now and we'll connect you with a specialist tour operator with more information on how to tailor and book this itinerary.

Other itineraries you might like

Why Horizon Guides?

Impartial guidebooks

Impartial guidebooks

Our travel guides are written by the leading experts in their destinations. We never take payment for positive coverage so you can count on us for impartial travel advice.

Expert itineraries

Expert itineraries

Suggested itineraries and routes to help you scratch beneath the surface, avoid the tourist traps, and plan an authentic, responsible and enjoyable journey.

Specialist advice

Specialist advice

Get friendly, expert travel advice and custom itineraries from some of the world’s best tour operators, with no spam, pressure or commitment to book.

Loading...