Top 7 Highlights of Annapurna Circuit Trek
Nepal is one of the best trekking destinations in the world. Also known as the “Land of Himalayas”, Nepal is home to eight of the ten tallest mountain of the world, including the tallest mountain on the planet, Mount Everest. Nepal is blessed with diverse landscapes, natural beauties, and rich biodiversity. Not only, Nepal is rich in natural beauties but also consist of diverse culture, tradition, and ethnicity.
Among the many treks in Nepal, Annapurna Circuit Trek is one of the most famous treks in Nepal. This trek offers trekkers with a lifetime experience with its stunning natural beauties, rich biodiversity, diverse culture, and breathtaking views of the Annapurna Range. From crossing one of the highest mountain passes, Thorong La Pass (5416m) to getting to the deepest gorge in the world, Kali Gandaki Gorge, walking on diverse climatic zones, and enjoying the beautiful hospitality of the Nepalese people and their ancient mountain settlements, Annapurna Circuit Trek is one of the most inspiring and challenging treks you will remember for the lifetime. No wonder why Annapurna Circuit Trek is one of the most popular treks in Nepal.
Major Highlights of Annapurna Circuit Trek
The Annapurna Mountain Peaks
One of the major highlights of the Annapurna Circuit Trek is the stunning Himalayan views of the Annapurna Massif and its neighboring peaks. The trek embraces an adventurous journey through the foothills of the world’s 7th and 10th highest peaks namely Annapurna (8,091 m) and Dhaulagiri (8,167m). This Annapurna Trek rewards the trekkers with towering views and panoramic sights of mountains including Annapurna I, II and II, the Machhapuchhre Peak, the Nilgiri Himal, Mount Gangapurna, the Lamjung Peak, the Pisang Pak, the Dhaulagiri range and many more, throughout the trek. The view of the world’s highest mountains glowing in the pastel light of dawn and dusk will take your breath away for a moment.
Crossing the Thorong La Pass: One of the Highest Mountain Pass
Located at the altitude of 5,416 meters, the Thorong La Pass is another major hallmark of the Annapurna Circuit Trek. Crossing one of the highest mountain pass, Thorong La is the most thrilling as well as challenging part of this trek. It is situated between the Khatung Kang and the Yakawa Kang Himal. Thorong La pass connects the village of Manang to Mustang. This is the highest point of this Annapurna Trek that offers mesmerizing views of the Annapurna and Dhaulagiri Mountain Peaks.
Marshyangdi and Kali Gandaki River Valley
During the Annapurna Circuit trek, you will be trekking through two beautiful river valleys united by the Thorong La Pass. These river valleys are bestowed with astounding terrains that trekkers can enjoy along the journey. With a diverse climatic variation and rich biodiversity spread throughout the valleys, trekkers can explore the myriad of alpine and sub-tropical forests. Furthermore, the valleys are also drained by the Himalayan Rivers of Marshyangdi, Koshi, and the Gandaki that have various tributaries that water the forests and wetlands home to many species of animals.
Highlights of the Annapurna Circuit Trek – Muktinath Temple
Annapurna Circuit Trek not only rewards the trekkers with natural beauty but also with its rich culture. Muktinath is a major cultural highlight of the Annapurna Circuit Trekking. Muktinath is a sacred temple of Lord Vishnu, a Hindu god, scared for both Hindu and Buddhist. that is visited by hundreds of pilgrims. Located at the foothill of Thorong La Pass, Muktinath is one of the world’s highest temples at an altitude of 3,800 m. This is the first destination that trekkers come across after crossing the Thorong La Mountain Pass.
The prominent and beautiful ethnic culture
Other than the breathtaking view of the snow-capped mountains, the journey around the Annapurna Circuit also takes you on a spiritual trip. During the trek, you can get insight into the local lifestyles of Magar and Gurung people in small settlements throughout the trek. There are many gumbas and small chortens on the trail. Along with that, you will come across charming villages at the foothills of Annapurna Himalayas inhabited by Loba people which will give you a whole different experience. Trekking around the Annapurna Circuit provides you an opportunity to experience a calm and peaceful form of lifestyle which offers a relaxing escape from the bustling city life.
Jomsom: A Picturesque Destination
Jomsom is one of the famous villages in the Mustang region where you will have an overnight stay during the Annapurna Circuit Trek. Jomsom is a beautiful village located by the banks of the Kali Gandaki River. It is known for its Shaligrams- fossilized stones that are said to be the natural state of Lord Vishnu by the Hindu people. The magnificent vies of the Annapurna and the Nilgiri Peaks make this village a picturesque destination. Jomsom is inhabited by the ethnic Thakali people and you can dive into the lifestyle and culture of the local people.
Pokhara: City of Lakes
Pokhara is one of the best tourist hubs of Nepal and the starting point of most of the Annapurna trekking including Annapurna Circuit Trek. Also known as the city of Lake, Pokhara is situated just beside the Phewa Lake that offers a close view of the Annapurna and the Machhapuchhre Himalayas. Pokhara is a great place to relax and enjoy the many sites that the city offers.
15 Days Annapurna Circuit Trek Itinerary
Day 01: Arrival at Tribhuvan International Airport, Kathmandu (1300m)
Day 02: Drive to Chamje (1430m) via Besisahar (830m), 7-8hours drive.
Day 03: Trek from Chamje to Dharapani (1960), 6 hours of trek.
Day 04: Trek to Chame (2630m), 5-6 hours of trek.
Day 05: Trek to Pisang (3300m), 5-6 hours of trek.
Day 06: Trek to Manang (3570) via Ghyaru, 5 hours of trek.
Day 07: Acclimatization day in Manang
Day 08: Trek to Yak Kharka(4,110m), 3-4 hours of trek.
Day 09: Trek to Thorong Phedi (4650m), 3-4 hours of trek.
Day 10: Thorong Phedi to Muktinath(3800) via Thorang pass (5416m), 7-8 hours of trek.
Day 11: Jeep drive to Tatopani (1100 m), 7-8 hours drive.
Day 12: Trek to Ghorepani (2800m), 6 hours of trek.
Day 13: Early morning hike to Poon hill (3210m), descend to Tikhedhunga, and drive to Pokhara, 8 hours.
Day 14: Drive from Pokhara to Kathmandu, 5-6 hours drive.
Day 15: Departure
When is the best time to trek around Annapurna Circuit?
Autumn (September to November) and spring (March to May) are the two best time for Round Annapurna Trek. During these seasons, the weather and temperature conditions around the Annapurna Circuit is just perfect for trekking. The days are bright and sunny with little to cloudless skies. You can get breathtaking views of the Himalayas. Also, the temperature is neither too hot nor too cold.
But you can also trek in winter and monsoon. If you want to travel in winter, you have plenty of opportunities to play with snow, and in the rainy season; you can see the greenery during this trek. The trekking trail is not crowded in the winter and monsoon. Trekking during winter or monsoon is the best choice if you want to trek peacefully in solitary.
In conclusion, the Annapurna Circuit Trek is a classic trek that rewards the trekkers with the best features of north-central Nepal.
The trek offers naturals, Himalayan, and cultural features perfect for avid trekkers who crave to explore thrilling and interesting sites with great travel experiences.
Furthermore, if you want to learn more about the Annapurna Circuit Trek or have any questions regarding this trek or any other trek in Nepal, then please feel free to contact us.