Annapurna Circuit trek
Nepal

32 Trees Planted for each Booking

Annapurna Circuit trek in Nepal
  • TRIP TYPE: Trekking
  • TRIP GRADE: Strenuous
  • TRIP STYLE: Tea House
  • TRIP LEADER: Local Leader
  • GROUP SIZE: 2 - 10 people
  • NEXT DEPARTURE: 02 Oct 2022

Details

This is the classic Annapurna Circuit trek crossing the high pass of Thorong La at 5,416m. On this Annapurna trek we follow the Kali Gandaki valley then ascend to the viewpoint at Poon Hill.

Trekking Annapurna Circuit offers a cross section of Nepal Himalaya. The mountain views throughout encompass some of the highest peaks in the world. They include Lamjung, Himalchuli, Manaslu, Dhaulagiri, Annapurna and Machapuchare.

The Annapurna Circuit walk starts several hours driving beyond Besishar town at the village of Jagat. You hike through Gurung villages surrounded by terraced fields in Marsyangdi valley. The trail enters pine forest and higher up into the alpine zone around Annapurna. There has been debate about the recent road construction in the Annapurna region. It is still worth trekking the Annapurna Circuit trek as it is possible to avoid walking on the road. By hiking on alternative trails you will enjoy the experience on this classic trek.

We follow Natural Annapurna Trekking Trails (NATT) where possible. We organised a recce trek following NATT for outdoor journalist, Terry Adby. Take a look at his article  "The Return of the Annapurnas". in online magazine Outdoor Enthusiast starting on Page 46. Also see BMC The New Way: Trekking Nepal’s Annapurnas.

After Pisang village we enter a Buddhist region. You will see colourful prayer flags, mani walls and monasteries along the way. We spend three nights at Manang for essential acclimatisation. During the days we explore the area around Manang walking to the Ice Lake and Khangsar village. The highest point is the day crossing the Thorung La pass at an altitude of 5,416m. After crossing the pass you enter an arid landscape in the Himalayan rain shadow. We walk down the Kali Gandaki gorge located between Dhaulagiri and Annapurna massifs.

Annapurna Circuit hike is a lodge based where you stay in the local tea houses along the way. We also organise Half Annapurna Circuit where we finish the trek at Jomsom then take a flight to Pokhara. If you would like to hike in Annapurna region take a look at Kopra Ridge trek, Mardi Himal trek and Annapurna Base Camp trekOther lodge trips in Nepal include Everest Base Camp trek and Manaslu Circuit trek.

Take a look at our Blog article Annapurna Base Camp versus Annapurna Circuit in Nepal. This explains the similarities and differences of these treks in the Annapurna region of Nepal.

  • For better acclimatisation and to prevent altitude sickness we organise a longer trek. We stay for three nights in Manang at 3,500m. The gradual ascent profile for this trekking holiday has worked well for our past group.
  • We are Himalayan trekking specialists having operated trips in Nepal for many years. Roland Hunter has designed the itinerary from his first-hand experience of this trek.
  • Our AITO Traveller Reviews for Half Annapurna Circuit have a holiday rating of 100%. Based on client feedback we won the 2018 Gold Award as AITO Tour Operator of the Year. Read more about our Testimonials and Awards.
  • We pay for private weather forecasts from EverestWeather.com. We also use in house forecasting throughout the duration of this trek.
  • We send a Thuraya satellite phone on our group treks in Nepal. Your leader will have reliable communications for logistics, planning and group safety.
  • We provide the porters with windproof jackets & trousers and shelter. We follow International Porter Protection Group (“IPPG”) guidelines.
  • We bring a comprehensive medical aid kit.
  • Our team with first hand knowledge of this trek provides pre trip support. During high season we have someone from our UK Operations team based in Kathmandu.

Itinerary

Arrive in Kathmandu

None

Hotel Tibet

Flying into Kathmandu on a clear day is in itself an unforgettable experience. The Himalayan peaks are only a short distance north of the capital of Nepal as seen from the plane. After customs, you will pass into the passenger pick-up area outside the building. You will see a Mountain Company signboard. Our representative will be waiting to welcome you to Nepal. After transferring to your hotel we will give you a full trek briefing. The rest of the day will be yours to explore Kathmandu and to make final preparations for the trek. You will hear the Nepalese word for hello ‘Namaste’, you will never forget that word after this holiday.

Sightseeing in Kathmandu

Hotel Tibet

Breakfast

This is a one day guided sightseeing tour of the Kathmandu Valley. We visit three out of the seven World Heritage Sites. You start off by visiting Patan Durbar Square. Afterwards you drive to the Buddhist stupa at Boudhanath. The last stop of the day at the Hindu shrine of Pashupatinath. The tour is likely to finish around 4pm and the rest of the day is free to further explore Kathmandu.

Three major towns in the valley, Kathmandu, Patan and Bhaktapur. Each place has great artistic and architectural traditions. Kathmandu is the capital and the largest city in the country. Patan, the second largest separated from Kathmandu by Bagmati river. Bhaktapur, the third largest, is towards the eastern end of the valley. Its relative isolation reflected in its slower pace and more medieval atmosphere. In Kathmandu there is a bustle of activity especially in the bazaars and markets. While the city has expanded over the last 10 years it is still possible to see traditional buildings and temples.

Drive to Jagat (10 hours)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Teahouse lodge

We leave Kathmandu early in the morning by private bus. It is a scenic drive with occasional glimpses of mountain peaks. At Dumre we turn off the Pokhara highway. We drive north following Marsyangdi River to Besisahar. We drive beyond this town passing a new hydro-plant built at Bhulbule by the Chinese. We arrive at Ngadi and change vehicles from our bus to local jeeps. We continue the drive to Jagat where we camp in the garden of a lodge.

During the months of April, May and October it will be very hot and humid. The temperatures can be more than 30 Degrees Celsius for the first few days of the trek. We have chosen the months that are likely to have optimal conditions for crossing the Thorung La. It is important to bring plenty of water, wear a sun hat and apply sun cream.

Walking 14km (7 hours)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Teahouse lodge

Shortly after leaving Jagat there are views of the 200m waterfall at Chamje. We descend to the river and cross over a bridge to return to the quieter East side of the valley. There is a new walking trail called NATT around the Annapurna Circuit away from the jeep track. Along the way we see small farms and terraced fields. We follow a path of stone steps climbing up and descending the spurs along the valley. The trail passes through huge boulders fallen from the mountains above. There is a steep ascent on a good trail to the beautiful and colourful village of Tal. After about four hours walking we stop for lunch at Tal.

After lunch there is a section of the trail along the base of a cliff next to the Marsyangdi River. After about a three hours walk we arrive at Dharapani at an altitude of 1,940m. There are several shops and lodges in this village.

Walking 14km (7 hours)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Teahouse lodge

From Dharapani we climb up to the village of Bagarchap. Then we walk through the forest following the river to Chame. Today, there are great views of Annapurna II (7,937m) and Lamjung Himal (6,932m) up the valley. If you look back you will be able to see Manaslu (8,154m) and Peak 29 (7,833m).

Walking 14km (6 hours)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Teahouse lodge

Leaving Chame you pass some mani walls and a little further there is a water-turned prayer wheel. After the suspension bridge the valley widens and Pisang Peak (6,091m) becomes visible.

Walking 15km (7 hours)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Teahouse lodge

We take the high level route to Manang taking 7 hours. There is also the option to take the low route taking only 5 hours along the valley floor. The high route starts by crossing the river outside Pisang. We follow a path which passes by a lake and a long mani wall. There is a long climb along a switchback path to the village of Ghyaru. We will stop at one of the tea houses and enjoy the stunning view of Annapurna II and IV. From Ghyaru we follow a high traverse to the next village called Ngawal. Finally you descend back to the valley floor and rejoin the main trail to continue to Braga and Manang.

Day walk around Manang

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Teahouse lodge

It is important to have an extra few days in Manang help acclimatisation to the high altitude. This will help us as we start the climb towards the Thorong La. There are lots of options for day walks around Manang. One possibility is to walk to Khangsar village on the way to Tilicho Lake or a longer walk to Ice Lake above Braga. It is well worth visiting the gompa above Braga. It is also worth attending the Himalayan Rescue Association afternoon lecture. This gives useful information about altitude and acclimatisation.

Day walk around Manang

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Teahouse lodge

It is important to have an extra few days in Manang help acclimatisation to the high altitude. This will help us as we start the climb towards the Thorong La. There are lots of options for day walks around Manang. One possibility is to walk to Khangsar village on the way to Tilicho Lake or a longer walk to Ice Lake above Braga. It is well worth visiting the gompa above Braga. It is also worth attending the Himalayan Rescue Association afternoon lecture. This gives useful information about altitude and acclimatisation.

Walking 9km (4 to 5 hours)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Teahouse lodge

Today is a shorter walk taking about 3 to 4 hours. By having a gradual ascent towards Thorung La helps your body adapt to the high altitude. It is a good idea to go for an afternoon walk. This helps the acclimatisation process by "climb high, sleep low". You can either walk up the valley and back to the lodge or climb the ridge behind the village.

Walking 6km (4 hours walking)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Teahouse lodge

Today is another short day of about 3 to 4 hours walking. Leaving Yak Kharka we pass through a few lodges at Letdar. After crossing the river there is a climb to Thorong Phedi. In the afternoon it is a good idea to go for a short walk.

Walking 12km (8 to 9 hours)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Teahouse lodge

We leave Phedi at first light for the challenging walk over the Thorong La at an altitude of 5,400m. The trail is on undulating terrain and after about 4 to 5 hours we should reach the pass. From the summit of the pass there are spectacular views of the Annapurna Range to the south. We can see Mukat Himal bordering Dolpo to the West. As we descend on the other side we see Annapurna (8,175m) and Tukuche Peak (6,920m). The descent to Muktinath is quite steep and will take between 3 to 4 hours. It is a good idea to use walking poles to help in case of a slippery path if there is still snow (depends on the time of year). Poles also take the strain off your legs and help to protect knees. We also include micro crampons on the kit list in case there is snow and ice on the trail.

Walking 9km (4 hours)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Teahouse lodge

We have a short walk downhill to Kagbeni. Before you set off it is well worth going to visit the important temples above the village of Muktinath. Many Hindu pilgrims travel to visit this temple where there are 108 water spouts. Below Muktinath the trail passes through a beautiful arid landscape. This is in the rain shadow of the Himalayas and is different to green and lush vegetation at the start of our trek. We descend to the green oasis of Kagbeni. It is a fascinating place to explore with narrow streets and old buildings. One needs a special permit to follow the path north of Kagbeni along the Thak Khola to Upper Mustang.

Walking 15km (6 hours)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Teahouse lodge

The trail follows the Kali Gandaki down to the town of Jomsom. We continue our descent to the pretty village of Marpha set amongst apple orchards. On most days this valley has strong winds in the afternoon. Having a Buff scarf is helpful to protect your face from the dust.

Walking 19km (7 hours)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Teahouse lodge

Today we pass the attractive village of Tukuche with traditional houses. We continue on down the Kali Gandaki and follow NATT where possible. Kalopani is further located further down the valley.

Walking 19km (7 hours)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Teahouse lodge

We now leave the Tibetan like arid landscape and start to see pine, cypress and juniper trees. The trail is sometimes on the valley floor and other times on a trail high above. Tatopani is a village with natural hot springs and it is well worth having a soak in the afternoon.

Walking 9km (4 to 5 hours)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Teahouse lodge

For the next two days we have a sustained climb to Ghorepani. Today after 800m of ascent we stop for the night at the village of Sikha.

Walking 7km (4 hours)

Walk up Poon Hill (45 minutes)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Teahouse lodge

We continue the climb through rhododendron forest to Ghorepani. There are many lodges located on the top of the ridge as the walk up to Poon Hill from here is a popular short trek in Nepal. There are superb mountain views of Dhaulagiri, Annapurna, Hiunchuli, Machhapuchhare and Lamjung.

Walking 8km (4 to 5 hours)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Teahouse lodge

The trail descends steeply from Ghorepani to the village of Tirkhedungha.

Walking 7.5km (4 hours)

Drive to Pokhara (1 1/2 hours driving)

Breakfast and lunch

Mount Kailash Resort in Pokhara

This is our last day trekking where we walk to Nayapool to meet our private transport for the drive back to Pokhara. We spend a night at a hotel in Pokhara beside Lake Phewa before flying back to Kathmandu.

Flight to Kathmandu

Breakfast

Hotel Tibet in Kathmandu

Transfer to Pokhara airport for the flight back to Kathmandu.

Fly home

Breakfast

Transfer to Kathmandu airport for the flight back home.  End of trip.

Dates & Prices

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2022

Dates Trip Leader Price Single Supplement: Room/Tent Availability
Dates 02 Oct 2022 to 23 Oct 2022 Trip Leader Local Leader Price US$2,395pp Single Supplement:
Room/Tent
US$240pp / NA
Availability 2 Left to Guarantee Book Now
Dates 30 Oct 2022 to 20 Nov 2022 Trip Leader Local Leader Price US$2,395pp Single Supplement:
Room/Tent
US$240pp / NA
Availability 2 Left to Guarantee Book Now

2023

Dates Trip Leader Price Single Supplement: Room/Tent Availability
Dates 02 Apr 2023 to 23 Apr 2023 Trip Leader Local Leader Price US$2,450pp Single Supplement:
Room/Tent
US$240pp / NA
Availability 2 Left to Guarantee Book Now
Dates 23 Apr 2023 to 14 May 2023 Trip Leader Local Leader Price US$2,450pp Single Supplement:
Room/Tent
US$240pp / NA
Availability 2 Left to Guarantee Book Now
Dates 01 Oct 2023 to 22 Oct 2023 Trip Leader Local Leader Price US$2,450pp Single Supplement:
Room/Tent
US$240pp / NA
Availability 2 Left to Guarantee Book Now
Dates 29 Oct 2023 to 19 Nov 2023 Trip Leader Local Leader Price US$2,450pp Single Supplement:
Room/Tent
US$240pp / NA
Availability 2 Left to Guarantee Book Now

2024

Dates Trip Leader Price Single Supplement: Room/Tent Availability
Dates 07 Apr 2024 to 28 Apr 2024 Trip Leader Local Leader Price US$2,450pp Single Supplement:
Room/Tent
US$240pp / NA
Availability 2 Left to Guarantee Book Now
Dates 21 Apr 2024 to 12 May 2024 Trip Leader Local Leader Price US$2,450pp Single Supplement:
Room/Tent
US$240pp / NA
Availability 2 Left to Guarantee Book Now
Dates 06 Oct 2024 to 27 Oct 2024 Trip Leader Local Leader Price US$2,450pp Single Supplement:
Room/Tent
US$240pp / NA
Availability 2 Left to Guarantee Book Now
Dates 27 Oct 2024 to 17 Nov 2024 Trip Leader Local Leader Price US$2,450pp Single Supplement:
Room/Tent
US$240pp / NA
Availability 2 Left to Guarantee Book Now

For private and bespoke trip, please contact us

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What's Included

  • All internal transport and transfers including airport collections.
  • Internal flights. The flight is Pokhara - Kathmandu. The weight allowance is 15kg for your main bag checked into the hold and 5kg for your day pack.
  • One day sightseeing in Kathmandu with Nepalese cultural guide and private vehicle.
  • Twin share room in Kathmandu at Hotel Tibet or Hotel Ambassador. In Pokhara stay at Mount Kailash Resort.
  • Twin share bedroom with a common bathroom while on trek.
  • Breakfast only in Kathmandu and Pokhara, all meals included while on trek. Trek meals include breakfast, lunch, afternoon tea and biscuits plus two course dinner. This is soup and the main meal. Two hot drinks included per meal.
  • Trekking arrangements. Including permits and fees, tents, Nepalese guides and porters. We provide one trekking guide for a group size of two people. We provide two guides for a group size of three people and three guides for group size of six people plus.
  • Porterage. The allowance for your main bag is 15kg.
  • Weather forecasts from EverestWeather.com.
  • Thuraya satellite phone for organising logistics and medical evacuations. It can also be also used for personal calls at extra cost.
  • Trekking map given to you on arrival to Kathmandu.
  • Rubberised luggage tag posted to you before departure.
  • Full financial protection. Our Air Travel Organiser’s Licence (ATOL) number is 10921. Our Association of Bonded Travel Operators Trust (ABTOT) membership number is 5365).
  • Pre departure support and advice from The Mountain Company. We are available by email, phone or face to face meetings.

What's Not Included

  • International flight to/from Kathmandu.
  • Travel & trekking insurance.
  • Nepal visa for 30 days.
  • Lunch and evening meals in Kathmandu.
  • Personal clothing & equipment, please see Appendix for suggested kit list.
  • Tips (guidance on amounts included in our “Nepal Pre Trip Information” notes).
  • Other items not listed in “What is included”.

Accommodation

Hotel Tibet in Kathmandu

Hotel Tibet is in Lazimpat next to the Radisson. This is our usual hotel for our standard trips in Nepal.

We have used Hotel Tibet for over 15 years and our clients have enjoyed staying at this property. It has a good location, comfortable rooms and high level of service. There is a garden terrace next to the restaurant on the ground floor. On the fifth floor there is a roof terrace with the Yeti Bar overlooking the city.


Teahouse lodge in Nepal

While on trek at a teahouse lodge in Nepal there are twin share rooms with common bathroom and a heated communal dining room. 

We will provide all meals at the lodges and include breakfast, lunch, afternoon tea and biscuits plus two course dinner (soup and main meal) plus up to two cups of hot drinks per meal. We regularly inspect and select the best lodges in each location.


Mount Kailash Resort in Pokhara

Mount Kailash Resort is in a good location along a quieter section of Pokhara Lakeside. It has fine views of the lake and the mountains.

This is a modern property with an attractive garden and swimming pool. The rooms are spacious with attached bathrooms. The rooms have television, air-condition and free Wi Fi.


Practical Information

Typical Day On a Teahouse Trek in Nepal

We provide a comfortable experience on our teahouse lodge-style treks. Our team works hard to support you so that you can relax and enjoy trekking in Nepal. The lodges provide your meals in a communal dining room. You will sleep in private rooms with a shared bathroom. There is a range in standard and service in teahouse lodges depending on location. i.e. lodges at higher altitude and places with fewer trekkers tend to have more basic facilities.

The day starts with getting up in your room shared with another trekker in our group. Before heading for breakfast you pack your overnight gear into your duffel bag. You would have given your breakfast orders to the guide to pass onto the kitchen last night. At the designated time the group will assemble in the dining room to eat breakfast. The menu has a range of items to choose from such as porridge, cereals, chapattis, and a choice of egg dishes. There is also the choice of tea or coffee plus other hot drinks like the popular ginger, lemon honey drink.

While the group is having breakfast the porters arrange their loads and set off in the cool of the morning. After breakfast, between 7am and 8am, we start walking. The pace of the trek is moderate as there is plenty of time in the itinerary to reach the lodge for tonight. There will be plenty of time to enjoy the scenery, take photos and explore the local villages. Lunch will be around midday at a teahouse lodge by the side of the trail.

After lunch, we continue the walk and on most days we arrive at the lodge by mid-afternoon. On arrival, you will get a hot drink and biscuits. For dinner, you get a two-course dinner (soup and main meal). The menus are quite standard with a range of dishes such as dal bhat, momos and the famous Sherpa stew. Dal bhat is a Nepalese dish of rice and lentils with vegetable curry. It is also possible to order spaghetti and pasta; pizzas; vegetable burgers and chips and fried rice. We also provide up to two cups of hot drinks per meal.

After supper, the leaders will discuss the plan for the next day. Afterwards, people might stay in the dining room chatting about the day’s events or playing cards. After a tiring day, most people head to their rooms quite early for the night. Tomorrow is likely to be very similar to today!

We cater for a variety of dietary requirements. There are always meals that are suitable for vegetarians. During booking, we find out if you have any dietary needs and agree upon meal plans before departure. If you have any questions about the food provided please get in touch with us to discuss further.

You can read more about Teahouse Trekking in Nepal on our Blog. This article explains the facilities available at a teahouse lodge. It also describes the advantages and disadvantages of camping style treks. Plus the amount to budget for extra costs. We also touch upon what to pack for a teahouse trek, safety and security plus responsible use of the lodge.

 

Communications

We bring a Thuraya satellite phone for logistical, safety and personal use. Personal calls charged at £4 (US$5 or €4.50) per minute and £2 (US$3 €4.50) to send and receive SMS text.

Kit List for Annapurna Circuit

This is the mandatory kit list for the safety of everyone in the group and to ensure a successful trek. You must have the following items tailored for Annapurna Circuit trek. The group leader will check your gear in Kathmandu before departure for the trek.

As a reminder, the weather on this trek will vary season to season and day to day as you ascend to higher elevations. At the start of the trek you will experience hot and humid conditions with temperatures up to 25 Celsius. You experience the coldest temperatures in Thorung Phedi at an altitude of 4,490m. Overnight lows here will be down to around -12 Celsius.

You should bring a rucsac or backpack for gear required during the day. Your pack should contain items such as warm clothes, jacket, camera, water bottles, personal first aid kit and snacks. The weight limit is 5kg. A porter will carry the rest of your personal equipment packed in a duffel or kit bag. The weight limit for your duffel bag is 15kg. Please mark your bag on the outside for easy identification.

Print the kit list and tick items off as you pack them then weigh your kit bag before you come on trek.

Footwear

  • Walking Boots. A pair of water repellent boots with ankle support. Boots must be in good condition, the best approach is to get new boots and break in before the trek. 
  • Trail shoes. Used around lodge.
  • Walking socks.
  • Gaiters. A pair of knee high gaiters used to keep boots dry if walking through snow or on wet ground.

Clothing

  • Waterproof and Windproof jacket (with hood) and trousers (goretex or similar). For use if it rains or snows during the trek and in windy conditions.
  • Trekking trousers. (eg. Mountain Hardwear Mesa V2 or The North Face Paramount Peak).
  • Soft Shell Trousers.
  • Long sleeve tops or shirts (not cotton).
  • Micro fleece.
  • Mid to heavyweight fleece or synthetic/ primaloft top.
  • Sleeveless/ gilet or body warmer type fleece / synthetic top. This will help keep your core warm while not bulking when layering up. Gilet used in combination with base layers, other fleeces and down jacket. This provides the most warmth and insulation.
  • Thermals or base layer for top & bottom (merino wool or synthetic).
  • Fleece or synthetic leggings. Worn around the camp or added as a layer when the temperatures start to drop higher up.
  • Medium weight down jacket.

Head and Gloves

  • Fleece gloves.
  • Warms mittens and/or gloves.
  • Wool or fleece hat.
  • Sun hat.
  • Bandana or scarf (eg. Buff Headwear).
  • Head torch. Bring extra batteries.
  • Sunglasses. The lenses need to be Category 4 rated. They should have side protection or wraparound design.

For crossing the pass

  • Trekking poles (Black Diamond with “Flick Lock” are best). Two poles are mandatory for your safety. These will be helpful on steep sections of the trail and river crossings. Also for walking on snow or ice higher up.
  • Kahtoola Microspikes or YakTrax Summits. These are for your security when descending passes with snowy or icy conditions. They fit onto your walking boots.
  • Gaiters. A pair of knee high gaiters used to keep boots dry if walking through snow or on wet ground.

Personal equipment

  • Sleeping bag. Overnight lows down to -12 Celsius. It is possible to rent a bag from Shonas Rental in Kathmandu.
  • Fleece or silk liner for your sleeping bag. A liner protects your sleeping bag from getting dirty. Also helps by adding extra insulation to keep you warm at night.
  • Day pack. Recommended size is around 30 litres. You need to have enough space to carry water bottles, camera, snacks and extra clothing. The pack should have a good waist belt. It is also a good idea to bring a rain cover to keep the contents dry.
  • Trekking poles (Black Diamond with “Flick Lock” are best). Two poles are mandatory for your safety. These will be helpful on steep sections of the trail and river crossings. Also for walking on snow or ice higher up.
  • Stuff sacks for keeping your gear dry and organised. Or even better are fold dry bags such as from Exped.
  • Two water bottles. Nalgene wide mouth bottles are the best. You may use a hydration pack lower down but the tube will freeze in the cold so ensure you still have two water bottles.
  • Pee bottle. Recommended as means you do not have to get up to find the toilet tent at night! For men you can use an old water bottle. For women take a look at SheWee.
  • Sunscreen and lip salve with a high SPF.
  • Water purification tablets (Pristine, Biox Aqua or Aqua Mira).
  • Favourite snack food.
  • Books and cards etc.
  • Camera with spare batteries and memory cards.
  • Insurance certificate.
  • Earplugs (optional).
  • Baby wipes (optional).
  • Hand sanitizer. Keep this in your day pack for use after a toilet break during the trek or before eating any snacks. We provide sanitizer for use before meals.

Travelling

  • Duffel bag for your personal gear on the trek. Will be carried by a porter. Rugged and waterproof made of a plastic material. Size 80-100 litres. Eg. Mountain Equipment or Rab. Bring a small combination padlock to secure the bag.
  • Travel clothes. You will need casual clothing for air travel days and time spent in Kathmandu.
  • Toiletry bag with soap, travel towel, toilet paper, toothbrush etc.

We provide a comprehensive group first aid kit.  Please bring personal medications and other items you might use such as:

  • Any personal medications.
  • Blister treatment (Compeed patches are the best)
  • Rehydration powder (eg Dioralyte).
  • Analgesics (paracetamol, ibuprofen and aspirin).
  • Plasters and zinc oxide tape.
  • Throat lozenges.
  • Diamox (helps with acclimatisation).

Risk assessment for Annapurna Circuit

You should be aware trekking in a developing country involves a risk of personal injury or death. You must accept these risks and be responsible for your own actions and involvement. Adventure travel requires an open and flexible attitude. You may experience extreme conditions and unpredictable weather. There could be last minute changes to the itinerary beyond our control. The ability to work in a team is an important aspect of our trips.

We have performed a threat and risk assessment for our Annapurna treks. Our trips have a degree of risk. This is part of the attraction of adventure travel and why so many people choose to join this type of holiday. By identifying the hazards we assess the level of risk. We have control measures in places to reduce this happening or to reduce the impact.

Our risk assessment is available to clients on request. We have listed below a summary of the significant risks and hazards identified by us:

  • Falls and trips resulting in physical injury eg. slipping on ice or falling off the path.
  • Altitude illness including but not limited to AMS, HACE and HAPE.
  • Climatic injuries (dehydration, sunburn, heat exhaustion, hypothermia or heat stroke). Please note during the months of April and October it will be very hot and humid for the first three days of the trek.
  • Crossing a river with no bridge resulting in drowning and/ or a fall.
  • Rock fall and landslides.
  • Snow and ice avalanches eg. on Thorong La pass.
  • Lightning strike.
  • Wildlife, pack animals (e.g. donkeys or horses) or stray dogs. Pack animals can knock people off the path. Dogs can attack and bite. Discuss rabies vaccination with your doctor.
  • Earthquake.
  • Risk of fire in the hotel or lodge.
  • Endemic local diseases. Discuss vaccinations with your doctor before departure.
  • Physiological injury. Such as heart attack, appendicitis, hernia, toothache etc. in a remote area.
  • Road traffic or flight accidents. Read paragraph “Internal flight".
  • Contaminated food and/ or water.

This trip visits a remote area. You are away from the usual emergency services and medical facilities. Evacuation for a serious injury requiring hospitalisation could take up to several days. This delay could impede your ensuing recovery. Helicopters are the usual means of evacuation. They are not always available or hindered by poor weather and flying conditions.

Internal Flights

Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (“FCDO”) travel advice from UK to Nepal states that “STOL airstrips in Nepal are among the most remote and difficult to land on in the world and are a challenge for even the most technically proficient pilots and well-maintained aircraft.” For their latest advice please take a look at their Safety & Security section under Air Travel.

There have been a number of recent air accidents in Nepal and in December 2013 The European Union banned all airlines based in Nepal from flying in the 28-nation bloc under the latest changes to a list of unsafe carriers.  For more information on Nepal’s air safety profile take a look at Aviation Safety Network.

Weather and conditions for Annapurna Circuit

Annapurna Circuit trek has a wide range of temperatures. This depends on the season, altitude and time of day. In the mountains between 1,000m and 3,500m the nights will be cool around 5 Celsius. During the day temperatures sometimes rise to 25 Celsius. At higher altitudes temperatures range from about 15 Celsius to -12 Celsius.

The trekking season in Nepal is late September to May. October and November is generally recognised as having the best weather. Spring is a popular time of year with warmer weather than in Autumn. Also there is the advantage of seeing spring flowers and rhododendrons in bloom.

The trekking months with highest temperatures are April, May, September and early October. The trekking months with the lowest temperatures are March, November and December.

We have written a blog article When is the best time to go trekking in Nepal Himalaya? This has information about the weather and conditions in Spring and Autumn seasons. It also explains the differences between the trekking regions of Nepal..

Suggested reading and maps for Annapurna region

Maps

Annapurna Trekking Map by Himalayan Maphouse. Scale: 1:900,000. We include in your welcome pack when you arrive in Nepal. National Geographic Annapurna Trekking 1:135,000.

Books

Annapurna south face. By Chris Bonnington.

Himalayan Pilgrimmage. By David Snellgrove.

Annapurna. By Maurice Herzog.

True Summit: What Really Happened on the Legendary Ascent on Annapurna. By David Roberts.

The Ascent of Rum Doodle. By WE Bowman.

A Nepalese Journey: The Essence of the Annapurna Circuit (Mountain Photography). By Andrew Stevenson.

Nepali Phrasebook by Lonely Planet.

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