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12 Days Annapurna Base Camp Trek (Express)
The Annapurna Base Camp is a high glacial basin lying north of Pokhara. Many of the peaks are over 7000m, including the famous twin-peaked Machapuchare, as well as Annapurna I and lll, Annapurna South, Gangapurna and Glacier Dome. Enjoy mountain views, thick bamboo and rhododendron forests and a mix of cultures unparalleled by other treks as you venture deep into the Annapurna Himal.
Trek Type: Lodge
Trek Grade: Moderate
Trek Days: 9
Max Altitude: 4100m
Best Season: Oct–Dec & Mar–May
The Annapurna Base Camp is a high glacial basin lying north of Pokhara. The combination of easy walking and majestic scenery makes the trek to Annapurna Base Camp (4200m), commonly known as Annapurna Sanctuary, one of the most popular treks in Nepal. This magnificent amphitheatre is called a “sanctuary” because of its natural serenity, beauty and the divine presence of the Hindu goddesses Annapurna and Gangapurna.
This isolated cirque of peaks can only be approached by one route, a deep gorge that carves into the fortress of mountains between Machhapuchhre and Hiunchuli. Many of the peaks are over 7000m, including the famous twin-peaked Machapuchare, as well as Annapurna I and lll, Annapurna South, Gangapurna and Glacier Dome. Enjoy mountain views, thick bamboo and rhododendron forests and a mix of cultures unparalleled by other treks as you venture deep into the Annapurna Himal.
Day 1 | D | Hotel | ▲ 1300m
Upon arrival, meet and transfer to hotel. Check in & trek briefing. Late afternoon leisure walk in Thamel, a popular tourist district in Kathmandu Valley and a bustling bazaar which offers a glimpse of Nepal’s vibrant ethnic culture.
Day 2 | B, L, D | Lodge | ▲ 1030m | ◎ 4hrs Trek
Kathmandu – Pokhara
After breakfast transfer to trek start point via Pokhara (6 hrs drive). Lunch will be on the way. Upon arrival short walk for 30 mins to rest stop at Birethanti.
Pokhara’s pristine air, spectacular backdrop of snowy peaks, serene lakes and surrounding greenery make it ‘the jewel in the Himalaya’, a place of remarkable natural beauty. It is also the gateway to the Annapurna region where many trekkers finds his Shangri-la, The mesmerizing Annapurna massif towering over the valley includes peaks over 8000m such as Machhapuchhre (Mt. Fishtail), Annapurna 1 to IV, Annapurna South, Dhaulagiri and Manaslu.
Day 3 | B, L, D | Lodge | ▲ 2000m | ◎ 4hrs Trek
Birethanti – Ghandruk
After breakfast start trek. From Birethanti, we trek uphill on the trail to Ghandruk. While on the trail, we again enjoy the panoramic views of the mountains, pass along various small villages like Chimrong, Syauli Bazar, and Chane.
After crossing the suspension bridge over Khumnu Khola, we reach Ghandruk, a beautiful village mostly inhabited by the Gurung community. Along with enjoying the stunningly close-up towering views of Fishtail, Annapurna South, and Hiunchuli. We also acquaint ourselves with the simple but rich cultural traditions of the Gurung people at the Gurung Museum in Ghandruk.
Day 4 | B, L, D | Lodge | ▲ 2170m | ◎ 5hrs Trek
Ghandruk – Chhomrong
At this juncture, we climb up for an hour up to Ghandrukkot and then a steep descent takes us to the Kimron Khola. After another steep ascent from Kimron Khola, we have an easy walk of about an hour. Then, we take a steep climb continuing up to Chhomrong. While climbing, we encounter the mighty peak of Annapurna South above the village and the view of Fishtail Mountain (Machhapuchhre) facing across the valley. Chhomrong is a beautiful village located on the lap of the giant Annapurna massive.
Day 5 | B, L, D | Lodge | ▲ 2580m | ◎ 6hrs Trek
Chhomrong – Dovan
We head out of Chhomrong along the Modi Khola leaving behind inhabited foothills into the high step and wooded slopes of the Himalayas. We cross the suspension bridge then trek up to Sinuwa Danda. The ascent from Sinuwa becomes somewhat flatter. The trail passes through a thick and dark rhododendron forest up to Khuldighar. Then, we descend long and steep stone steps into deep bamboo and rhododendron forests through which we reach Dovan shortly.
Day 6 | B, L, D | Lodge | ▲ 3230m | ◎ 4hrs Trek
Dovan – Deurali
The day starts with a gentle gradual ascent following the trail above the river through thick bamboo, oak and rhododendron forests up the side of the canyon. We pass by Himalaya Hotel and cross two streams over small bridges. The trail passes through solitary places. We get a sense of peace from the beauty of Mother Nature that surrounds us. There is also the possibility of seeing a variety of wildlife species such as wild pigs, deer, and maybe even snow leopards. We climb again to Hinko Cave, an overhanging rock. Our further climb paves the way to Deurali.
Day 7 | B, L, D | Lodge | ▲ 3700m | ◎ 3-4hrs Trek
Deurali – Machhapuchhre Base Camp
Today, we start our trek to Machhapuchhre Base Camp (MBC). We make a gentle climb through a river bed and then a steep climb over to the mountain side. There are avalanche prone areas at some point on the trail. We have to be on alert to protect ourselves. If there is any wind after about half an hour walk from Deurali, we will find ourselves in the middle of a river bed surrounded by giant snow-covered mountains. When the sun rises, the snow on the mountains shines and the river valley is filled with warm sun rays. The hike from Bagar to Machhapuchhre Base Camp is somewhat strenuous but the unfolding view of the majestic Machhapuchhre is certainly a rewarding experience. At this juncture, we enjoy the views of Mt. Hiunchuli, Annapurna South, Annapurna I, Annapurna III, Gangapurna and, of course, the Fishtail or Machhapuchhre itself.
Day 8 | B, L, D | Lodge | ▲ 4095m | ◎ 6hrs Trek
Machhapuchhare Base Camp – Annapurna Base Camp – Himalaya Hotel
On the way to Annapurna Base Camp (4100m) from Machhapuchhare Base Camp, the vegetation disappears. We will encounter with the snow boulders melting and forming small streams. The path widens as we enter the Sanctuary, follows a stream, and then climbs to a few huts alongside a moraine.
Upon arrival at this juncture, we will have sensational views of the near-vertical south face of Annapurna towering above the sanctuary. Annapurna Base Camp sanctuary boasts of a dynamic view without anything impeding panorama of the 360 degrees. After all that hard work in the last few days, you will be rewarded with the inspiring views of Machhapuchre, Annapurna south, Annapurna I, Hiuchuli. We have about 2 hours to explore and walk around the area for photo taking. After which we trek back to Machhapuchhare Base Camp and down to Himalaya Hotel.
Day 9 | B, L, D | Lodge | ▲ 2800m | ◎ 6hrs Trek
Himalaya Hotel – Chhomrung
Trek back to Chhomrung Village and rest for the day.
Day 10 | B, L, D | Hotel | ▲ 900m | ◎ 6hrs Trek
Chhomrung – Nayapul-Seulibazaar – Birethanti – Pokhara
Trek downhill about 2 hours and gradual flat another 4 hrs and take the transport back to Pokhara. Upon arrival check in hotel. Late afternoon free at leisure to explore the Lakeside – a mix of hotels, restaurants, cafes, bars and souvenir shops that has thrived along the eastern shore of the enchanting Lake Phewa.
Day 11 | B, L, D | Hotel | ▲ 1300m
Pokhara – Kathmandu
After breakfast enjoy a five hour scenic drive along Trisuli to Kathmandu. Lunch will be on the way. Upon arrival check in hotel. Afternoon free to explore Thamel.
Day 12 | B
Kathmandu – Departure
After breakfast, check out of hotel. City tour visit Kathmandu Durbar Square, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and if you are lucky, you will get a glimpse of the famous Kumari, the world’s only living Goddess. Transfer to airport for departure.
- Private A/C transportation including airport transfer
- Personal English speaking tour guide
- Hotel accommodation
- Meals as per itinerary
- Entrance fees
- English speaking trekking guide (Assistant guide included for 8 and above persons)
- Porter (1 porter to every 2 trekkers, each trekker’s bag max 15kg)
- Insurance for trekking crew
- Lodge accommodation
- Sleeping bag with fleece inner liner
- Trek permit and national park fees
- 1 trekking map per trekker (provided in Nepal)
- Nepal visa (apply upon arrival)
- Travel insurance
- Alcoholic and other beverages
- Personal & trek expenses (including hot shower, drinking water, battery charging)
- Liabilities of loss, theft and damages