Nepal - Annapurna Circuit
Hiking the Annapurna Circuit in Nepal - November 2018
How to get there
You probably need to fly to Kathmandu. This is not really a nice city, so do not plan too much time here. However, it Kathmandu you need to get the two permissions for the hiking trail. From Kathmandu, you can take a bus to Besisahar (in case you walk the normal counter clock-wise route). Keep in mind, that due to traffic, the bus takes 6-10 hours.
Day 1 (Kathmandu - Ngadi Bazar)
We took the bus from Kathmandu to Besiahar. We started at 7am in the morning, but the traffic was so bad, that we arrived at ~4:30 pm in Besisahar. It was also raining and almost getting dark, so we decided to take the bus to the first overnight at XXX.
Day 2 (Bgadi Bazar - Jagat)
Day 3 (Jagat - Dharapani)
Day 4 (Dharapani - Charme)
Day 5 (Charme - Pisang)
Upper Pisang is much nicer to stay than Lower Pisang, since you have a very nice view. However, in our case, it was also very window and here it was one of the coldest night of the whole trip.
Day 6 (Pisang - Braga)
Day 7 (Trip to Icelake)
A trip to the Icelake is very good to get used to the altitude, since the Icelake is located on 4.800m. If the wheather is good, the icelake is incredible beautiful (see main image of this description).
Day 8 (Braga - Manang)
Day 9 (Manang - Yak Kharka)
Day 10 (Kharka - Thourong Phedi)
Day 11 (Thourong Phedi - Muktinath)
Day 12 (Muktinath - Kagbeni)
Day 13 (Kagbeni - Marpha)
Day 14 (Marpha - Kalopani)
Day 15 (Kalopani - Tatopani)
Day 16 (Tatopani - Sikha)
Day 17 (Sikha - Ghorepani)
Day 18 (Ghorepani - Pokhara)
Day 18 (Staying in Pokhara)
Day 19 (Staying in Pokhara)
Day 20 (Pokhara - Kathmandu)
We took a bus at 7am in the morning back to Kathmandu. You can buy tickets in many travel agencies. Back to Kathmandu, you recognize how quiet it was on the trip.
There is no reservation necessary. There are enough places to overnight. Usually, if you stay there and pay for dinner and breakfast, you get the night for free. This is no longer true, the more you are closer to the highest point at Thorong La Pass.
You should follow the general advice to never sleep on the highest elevation you reach at one day. According to our guide book, you should go down at least 300m for overnight. We followed that advice (and did some late afternoon walks to achieve this) and did not have any problems with the altitude sickness.
I do recommend to do the counter-clockwise tour. Otherwise, you have one really hard day before Thorong La Pass, where you have to hike up ~1.800m in one day without a possibility to stay somewhere and also water supply. The counter-clockwise direction is much better to get used to the high altitude.
We spent approximately 15€ per day in average. However, we did not buy water in bottles. Instead, we used the “clean water initiave” and we drank the water without further cleaning. If you are part of a travel group, they don’t take you to those clean water stations, since that would be too time consuming. If you are on your own, I can recommend those water stations - check your tavel book where they are located. Otherwise water is getting expensive the higher you hike. Also tea is getting much more expensive the higher you are, but tea is the best hot drink you can get there.
The higher you hike, I recommend to eat more garlic soup. In the beginning it might smell strange, but then you really like to eat it, and it really helps with the high elevation to avoid altitude sickness.
Food on the way
There are plenty of restaurants on the way. You do not need to worry about food. It is very cheap and also delicious. You will also find enough water. We used the general tablets to get rid of all the unwanted bacterias.
Packing list (extract)
- Normal trekking shoes are sufficient, the trek is not really difficult. I recommend to use hiking sticks, since there is at least one day where you hike down ~1.800m which is really a mess without sticks.
- You don’t need to plan for something special. If you take breakfast where you overnight, take lunch in a restaurant on the trail and dinner where you sleep, that should be sufficient. If you are looking for some fruits, that can be a challenge.
- A sleeping bag is sufficient. However, it still can really get very cold. I recommend to have a slepping bag with comfort zone at 0° Celcius. The rooms are usually to 2-4 persons, so you normally don’t need earlugs.