Best Season: Spring(March – May) and Autumn(Sept – November)
Total Duration: 25 Days
Mount Manaslu is also known as Kampung, the 8th highest mountain in the world at 8,163 meters above sea level. It is a part of the Nepalese Himalayas, in the west-central part of Nepal. Its name, which means “mountain of the spirit”, comes from the Sanskrit word Manasa, meaning “intellect” or “soul”. Manaslu was first climbed on May 9, 1956, by Toshio Imanishi and Gyalzen Norbu, members of a Japanese expedition. It is said that “just as the British consider Everest their mountain, Manaslu has always been a Japanese mountain”.
Manaslu is the highest peak in Gorkha District and is located about forty miles east of Annapurna. The mountain’s long ridges and valley glaciers offer feasible approaches from all directions and culminate in a peak that towers steeply above its surrounding landscape.
The Manaslu Circuit with Tsum Valley Trek offers a variety of trekking options. The popular Manaslu trekking route of 177 kilometers skirts the Manaslu massif over the pass down to Annapurna. The Nepalese Government only permitted the trekking of this circuit in 1991. The trekking trail follows an ancient salt-trading route along the Budhi Gandaki river. En route, 10 peaks over 6,500 meters are visible, including a few over 7,000 meters.
The highest point reached along the trek route is the Larke-La at an elevation of 5,106 meters. Tsum Valley is a sacred Himalayan pilgrimage valley situated in northern Gorkha, Nepal. The word ‘Tsum’ comes from the Tibetan word ‘Tsombo’, which means vivid. Traditionally, Tsum valley was a currently distinct geographical area called ‘Tsum Tso Chucksums’, which means thirteen provinces ruled as a single territory. Against the majestic backdrop of the Ganesh Himal, Sringi Himal, and Boudha Himal.
This serene Himalayan valley is rich in ancient art, culture, and religion. The local people are mostly of Tibetan origin & speak their own dialogue. The altitude of Tsum Valley Trekking varies from 1905m in Lokpa to over 5093m at Ngula Dhojhyang pass on the Tibetan border. The hidden valley is surrounded by the Boudha Himal and Himal Chuli to the west, Ganesh Himal to the south & Sringi Himal to North.
Manaslu Conservation Area has been established with the primary objective of achieving conservation and sustainable management of the delimited area, which includes Manaslu.
Upon your arrival in Kathmandu (TIA), our representative from Hillstrek will be there to pick you up. You will be transferred to the hotel in half an hour drive with a private vehicles. We will discuss our trip and you have time for refreshments. In the evening we are together again to welcome dinner in a typical Nepalese restaurant with a cultural program.
After breakfast, your tour guide will pick you up for half day sightseeing in Kathmandu Durbar Square, Pashupatinath Temple and Bouddhanath Stupa. You will have your lunch in the restaurant with the view of Stupa then you back to hotel. You will meet your trek leader and discuss about the trek and do last minutes arrangements.
We start early drive today for Sotikhola. During the drive, we enjoy views of Nepalese countryside along with the mountain sceneries. We drive on a pitched road from Kathmandu to Dhading Besi, district headquarters of Dhading, but the drive from Dhanding Besi to Arughat will be on a rough road. Upon reaching Arughat, a major town in the region we drive further towards Sotikhola through Arkhet bazar which place supply all the goods and materials for Manashlu region.
In the beginning of the day, we cross the bridge, we trek through the beautiful forests, then climb onto a ridge above huge rapids on the Budhi Gandaki. Then we reach Khursanibari/Liding upon which the rocky trail weaves its way up and down. The trail to Machhakhola goes through the sand bank of Budhigandaki river and the village Lapubesi.
The narrow trail makes some minor ups and downs and eventually crosses the Thado Khola and reaching Khorlabesi. After a few more ascends and descends we come across a small Hotspring called Tatopani. From the hot spring, we climb over another ridge, then cross the Budhi Gandaki once again. We climb on a wide, well-crafted staircase, then across a landslide and over a ridge to Yarubagar via Dobhan.Crossing the west bank of the Budhi Gandaki, we climb over a ridge, trek along the river and then climb towards the village of Jagat.
The early part of trek moves gently uphill and then follows a flat leveled path. You cross a suspension bridge over Budhi Gandaki before you enter Philim. Philim is a big village mainly inhabited by the Gurungs. From Philim you climb a gradual up hill stopping for lunch at Ekle Bhatti. Lokpa is the first village as you enter the Tsum valley. Stay overnight in a lodge.
You take an ascending route to reach Chumling stopping for lunch along the way. Chumling is located on the south face of the Shingri Himal. This day you enjoy a pleasant visit to the Gombas of Chumling. This day is challenging as it is an ascending path that stretches on almost the entire route. Stay overnight in the lodge.
This is a tough and long day of walking but the scenic views of the valley amply compensates for the long walk. Chhokangparo is situated on a flat land and consists of 2 settlements, Chhokang and Paro. From here you can get superb views of the Ganesh Himal range. Some households practice polyandry down here. This area is prominent for its Tibetan Buddhist heritage. Stay overnight in the guest house of Rachen Gumpa.
Nile is the last village heading north in the upper Tsum valley. This village is situated on the banks of the Shiar Khola and it consists of large number of households. Mu Gompa is home to a very old monastery and there are no village establishments here. It is located at the highest and farthest point in the Tsum valley. This trail is used to import and export things to and from Tibet. You may come across several yak trains supplying goods to local villages. Stay overnight in the guest house of Mu Gompa.
Today we can take excursions to the many snow covered peaks in the area for the most spectacular views of this trek. Take a Half day walk to the Nunnery and to a small pond a big further up to Nunnery. Or day a full day trek to Vajyo with your packed lunch as there are no places to buy our lunch. Stay overnight in the guest house of Mu Gompa.
On an entirely descending path. This day you can enjoy glimpses of the Punchen Himal that is unique in shape. This day you continue your descent by retracing the path from your ascent. Stay overnight in the Guest house.
On the way you can enjoy views of Manaslu and Ganesh Himal. Gomba Lungdang is home to a beautiful and large monastery that houses monks (all females). Men are not permitted in some areas of this monastery. The most spectacular sunrise through Ganesh Himal range is a magic moment. Stay overnight in the Gumpa.
After Breakfast at Gompa, we take downhill keep our unforgettable and very close views of Ganesh Himal range to Rainjam and then gradual up and down hill to Ripchet, Ripchet is a big village where there are about 70 families living, its one of the most laid back village in this region, You can find very simple home stays. Over night at Ripchet.
We begin today’s trek by descending to the forest and climb over a rocky ridge of Chumling. Then again we descend to the river and ascent to the village Lokpa. The trail goes gradual down to the place where The trail derived into the Manashlu circuit and it’s starting point. At this point, we descend to the grassland slopes, cross the Budhi Gandaki, then trek along the west bank for a while, then cross to the east bank and then back again. As we continue through the trail we pass through bamboo forests to the Deng Khola. Upon crossing the Khola, we reach the tiny village, Deng.
The day begins with crossing the Budhi Gandaki and climb to Rana. From the bridge, we climb a bit to join a trail from Bihi fedi, then head west up the Budhi Gandaki valley. The trail also passes through forests and manewall where we turn towards a corner that enters to Ghap.We further cross the Budi Gandaki several times today and come across several gompas enroute. The trail follows the river upstream through a dense forest. After crossing the river at an impressive spot where it thunders down a narrow gorge, the forest becomes less dense and the trail is fine again. The pleasant walk continues and after a last steep climb we reach Namrung.
Namrung village is a good viewpoint for Siring and Ganesh Himal and from the village we can also see Mount. Himal Chuli in the south. We climb steadily and pass through forests and reach Lihi, a fine village with many chortens and barley terraces. The trail drops and crosses the side valley of Simnang Himal with Ganesh Himal always closed by. We further pass through Shyo, Lho and Shyala villages before reaching Sama Village. We enjoy extraordianary views of Mt. Manashlu from Lho village and also explore the famous Ribung Gompa. In Shyala village we will be surrounded by high mountains like Himal Chuli and Peak 29 (Ngadi Chuli) to the left, Manaslu and large glaciers straight ahead, and other snow summits to the right, and at the far end stands Ganesh Himal. Today’s journey ends in Samagaon.
We spend the day at Samagaon both for rest and acclimatization. Today, we get acquainted with the rich Sherpa culture. We enjoy the sight of thousands of mane stones with Buddhist texts and pictures. We explore the monastery (Pungyen Gompa), with great views of the glacier. It is named after Manashlu, Pungyen means bracelet, a good description of the two peaks. It was destroyed a year after the first unsuccessful Japanese attempt to climb Manashlu. The locals believed that the climb angered the gods, and when the Japanese came back a year later they met with a lot of resistance that they had to give up their attempt. They were finally successful in 1959.
Today, we descend to the Budhi Gandaki River, that has turned north and follow it to a bridge over a side stream. The trail to the left leads to the Manashlu Base camp. The Larkya la Trail passes several mane walls as the valley begins to widen. It is an easy trail on a shelf above the river passing the juniper and birch forests of Kermu Kharka. We drop to the river, cross the Budhi Gandaki on a wooden bridge and climb steeply onto a promontory between two forks of the river and on the top is Samdo.
Even today, we continue our walk down the edge, cross the wooden bridge over Budi Gandaki and begin walking upward. Upon crossing two streams and witnessing the Larkya Glacier we go around the valley of the Salka Khola and climb up again to the stone guest house (4450 m), which is not a lodge but a kind of shelter called Dharmshala, also known as Larke Phedi. Way to the north goes to the Tibet boarder on the way. The short walk today also leaves plenty of time for acclimatization and relaxing in the afternoon.
After a short climb, we reach a valley on the north side of the Larke Glaciers from where we can enjoy great views of Cho Danda and Larke Peak. Finally, we walk across moraines of the glacier, making a gradual ascent which becomes steeper only in the last section of the pass. From the pass, there are outstanding views of Himlung Himal, Cheo Himal, Kangguru and the huge Annapurna II. The downhill trail from Larke-La to the bottom is amazing but tough.To walk into these low pastures with the evening mist coming in with Mt. Manashlu looming close by is an overwhelming experience.
From a ridge at Bhimthang, we can enjoy great views of Mt. Manaslu, Lamjung Himal, Himlung Himal and Cheo Himal. We descend further and cross a high pasture (Sangure Kharka) followed by a bridge over Dudh Khola. We walk through rhododendron forest and follow a trail through a narrow valley until we reach the highest cultivated land of the valley at Karche. We pass across fields before making a steep climb over a ridge. The trail comes off the ridge in a big, sweeping arc to the river bank. A short distance beyond is the village of Gowa. Due to yesterday’s tiredness we might take an overnight rest at Gowa but better settlements are available at Tilche.
We climb over a small ridge and enjoy the stone paved trail as it passes through a beautiful village. Then we cross the bridge over Dudh Khola and climb up through a chorten-shaped arch, pass a mane wall and reach the Thochen village. At the village, we go through a police checkpoint and continue to Dharapani. We have entered the Annapurna circuit section from Dharapani. Further down, we come across Karte village and after quiet a bit of walking we cross a bridge over Marshyangdi Khola. We also come across some mane walls before reaching the village of Tal, situated at the foot of a large waterfall.
We follow the trail to Chyamche village crossing the Marshyangdi Khola once again. The Marsyandi valley opens with its terrace fields and villages clung very high to the hillsides. The trail then descends through rhododendron and pine forests to Syange via Jagat.
The drive from Syange to Kathmandu via Besi Sahar offers one an opportunity to enjoy both hill and mountain landscapes. The drive is often along the banks of the Marsyangdi and Trishuli rivers. We also drive by some beautiful villages with farming terraces on both sides of the road. Farewell dinner