Mardi Himal trek

5 Based On 4 Reviews

5 Trees Planted for each Booking

Mardi Himal trek in Nepal
  • TRIP TYPE: Trekking
  • TRIP GRADE: Moderate
  • TRIP STYLE: Tea House
  • TRIP LEADER: Local Leader
  • GROUP SIZE: 2 - 10 people
  • NEXT DEPARTURE: 02 Mar 2024


Mardi Himal is a classic Nepal trekking experience in the Annapurna region. This trek combines cultural interest with incredible views of the Himalaya.

Mardi Himal trek is a short hike with only six trekking days. The Mardi Himal itinerary passes through villages and a range of landscape from forest to high alpine. The mountains seen include Annapurna South, Mount Hiunchuli and Mount Machhapuchhre. This last peak is also known as Fishtail and is at an altitude of 6,993m. This trail in the Annapurna region of Nepal is less busy than many others such as Annapurna Circuit. It is a shorter alternative than the popular Annapurna Base Camp trek. We included this trek in our choice of 7 Best Annapurna Treks in Nepal.

We start the trek only a short drive from Pokhara at the road head in a place called Phedi. We ascend a trail through the forest to the large village at Dhampus. There are several trekking routes with a trail heading to Australian camp. Another trail goes to Ghandruk and continues to Annapurna Base Camp. At the trail junction at Pitam Deurali we hike through forest towards Forest Camp. Higher up we walk through rhododendron forests. Above Low Camp we pass Middle Camp. On the way to High Camp we get wonderful views of Annapurna range. Along the Mardi Himal ridge at Upper Viewpoint we look down into the Annapurna Sanctuary. If the weather is fine and we have enough time we can walk further along the danda to Mardi Himal Base Camp.

After the trek we spend two nights in a hotel at the lakeside town of Pokhara. This is an enjoyable place to relax and explore the city with many good restaurants, cafes and shops.

For accommodation while on trek we use tea house lodges. This is like for other treks in Annapurna and Everest region such as Pikey Peak. If you would prefer to join a camping style trek in Annapurna region take a look at Lamjung Himal.

  • 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 Mardi Himal 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 review weather forecasts for the Annapurna 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.

Route Map


Arrival in Kathmandu

No meals

Hotel Tibet in Kathmandu

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 in Kathmandu

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.

Fly to Pokhara

Drive to Phedi (1 hour)

Walking 7km (4 hours)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Teahouse lodge

After breakfast, we take the morning flight to Pokhara. On arrival, you will drive for about an hour along the Seti River valley to the trek start point at Phedi. The path ascends through forest in the lower foothills of the Annapurnas. After 2 hours of climbing, we arrive at Dhampus village at an altitude of 1,650m. From here this is a superb view of Mount Machhapuchhre also known as Fishtail. We continue walking up this trail until we arrive at the cluster of lodges at Pothana at an altitude of 1,925m
During the months of April, May, and October it will be hot and humid during the days of this trek at a low altitude. It is important to bring plenty of water, wear a sun hat and sun cream.
Important note: there is a safety risk to consider when flying on airlines in Nepal. If you would like to avoid the flight from Kathmandu to Pokhara there is an option to drive and this takes about 6 to 7 hours (depending on the traffic). There are also safety considerations with driving in Nepal as the roads are busy and road traffic accidents happened from time to time. For information about the aviation risk in Nepal read the relevant sections “Threat and Risk Assessment” and “Internal flights in Nepal”. Please get in touch with us if you would like to discuss this further.

Walking 7.5km (4 hours)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Teahouse lodge

From Pothana we walk up to a place called Pitam Deurali. At this junction we turn off the Annapurna Base Camp trail. We hike through a dense forest of oak, maple, hemlock and rhododendron. Tonight we stay at one of the lodges in a clearing of the forest at Forest Camp or also known by the locals as Kokar.

Walking 4km (4 hours)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Teahouse lodge

The trail to Low Cam continues through the forest covered with moss, lichen and tree ferns. As we ascend higher there is more rhododendron and bamboo. At Low Camp there is a cluster of lodges. The view from Low Camp is superb with Mount Machhapuchhre, known as Fishtail, up the valley.

Walking 4.5km (4 hours walking)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Teahouse lodge

An hour or so above Low Camp the trail breaks out above tree line. Looking towards the West there is a good view to Annapurna South and Hiunchuli. The trail continues up along the Mardi Himal ridge. We are walking on grass with some rhododendron bushes along the way. We often see the colourful Danphe pheasant on this section of the trail. We arrive at the cluster of lodges at High Camp.

Walking 9.5km (6 to 7 hours)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Teahouse lodge

Today we wake early for sunrise view of the mountains. After an early breakfast we walk up the ridge towards Mardi Himal. There is a good trail through the grass with a couple of steeper sections on rock. There are dzos (yak/ cow cross breeds) grazing up here. In the summer sheep and goats from lower villages graze in this area. We pass several herder’s huts along the trail.

After three hours you should reach Upper View point at 4,200m. From here we can look into the Annapurna Sanctuary and the panorama view is spectacular. We are looking at the south face of Annapurna, Hiunchuli and Machhapuchhre (Fishtail). We return to High Camp for lunch and then in the afternoon we descend back to Low Camp.

Walking 3.5km (3 to 4 hours)

Drive to Pokhara (2 hours)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Mount Kailash Resort in Pokhara

On the return trek from Low Camp we take a different route from the way up.  We follow a steep trail that goes down to Siding village. Siding is a traditional Nepalese village and a lovely place to spend some time. This place is at the road head and we take a jeep out to Pokhara. We pass through the villages of Kalimati and Ghalel to Lumre and then onto Pokhara.


Mount Kailash Resort in Pokhara

Today is a free day to rest and relax in the lakeside town of Pokhara.  You can look around the shops and enjoy the restaurants and cafes. Sightseeing options include hiring a boat to row out to Barahi temple on an island in the lake.

Fly to Kathmandu


Hotel Tibet in Kathmandu

Transfer to Pokhara airport for the flight back to Kathmandu.

Fly home


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

Dates & Prices

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What's Included

  • All internal transport and transfers including airport collections.
  • Internal flights. The flights are Kathmandu - 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 a Nepalese cultural guide and private vehicle including all entry tickets.
  • Twin-share room at Hotel Ambassador or Hotel Tibet in Kathmandu and at Mount Kailash Resort in Pokhara.
  • Dormitory room with common bathroom while on the trek.
  • Breakfast only in Kathmandu and Pokhara.
  • All meals are included while on the trek. You can select your dishes from the menu at the lodge. The trek meals are breakfast, lunch, afternoon tea, and dinner. Breakfast includes cereal, porridge, or rice pudding and an egg dish with bread or toast. Lunch includes one dish such as fried rice, dal bhat, momos, or pasta. For afternoon tea, you get a hot drink plus biscuits. Dinner is two courses including soup and the main dish chosen by you from the menu. You are allowed two cups of hot drinks per meal so this means a total of seven cups per day.
  • Trekking arrangements. Including permits and fees, tents, Nepalese guide(s), and porter(s). 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 a group size of six people plus.
  • Porters to carry your main bag. The porterage allowance is 15kg.
  • Weather forecasts for the Annapurna region during your trek.
  • Thuraya satellite phone for organising logistics and medical evacuations. It can also be also used for personal calls at extra cost.
  • A trekking map is given to you on arrival in Kathmandu.
  • UK-registered charity, Pipal Tree, will plant 5 trees for you in the Gurkha Memorial Forest in southern Nepal.
  • Full financial protection for bookings from the UK (ATOL) and internationally (ABTOT). 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 at US$50 (approx £40).
  • Lunch and evening meals in Kathmandu.
  • For personal clothing & equipment, please see the Appendix for the suggested kit list.
  • Tips to the trek crew. Each trekker should budget for giving tips into the group fund. This should be in the region of 8,000 Nepalese rupees (approx. £50 or US$65)
  • Other items not listed in “What is included”.


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 of standards and service in teahouse lodges depending on location. i.e. lodges at higher altitudes 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 main bag (this could be a duffel, kit bag, or rucsac). 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. Breakfast includes cereal, porridge, or rice pudding and an egg dish with bread or toast plus two cups of hot drinks such as tea, coffee, or lemon ginger honey. 

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. 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.  This includes one dish such as fried rice, dal bhat, momos, or pasta plus two cups of hot drinks.

After lunch, we continue the walk and on most days we arrive at the lodge around 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. Afterward, 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 to 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.



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 Mardi Himal

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 Mardi Himal 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 warm conditions with temperatures up to 25 Celsius. You experience the coldest temperatures in Mardi Himal High Camp at an altitude of 3,600m. Overnight lows here will be down to around -10 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.


  • 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.


  • 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).
  • 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).

Head and Gloves

  • Fleece 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.

Personal equipment

  • Sleeping bag. Overnight lows down to -10 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.


  • 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 Mardi Himal trek

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 Mardi Himal trek. 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 place 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.
  • Rockfall and landslides.
  • 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 accidents.
  • 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 in Nepal

Flights from Nepal’s Short Take-Off & Landing (“STOL”) airstrips are dependent on weather. Delays often happen if there is poor visibility or high winds. For our itineraries with flights to or from STOL, we include one extra day in Kathmandu at the end of the trip. This is in case of delays flying back. If the delays are longer we will help reschedule your international flights. There is likely to be a fee charged by the airline for this. You also have to pay for costs incurred in Kathmandu as a result of the delay such as accommodation and meals.

You should read the Foreign, Commonwealth, and Development Office (“FCDO”) travel advice for Nepal. For their latest advice take a look at their Safety & Security section under Air TravelThere have been some recent air accidents in Nepal. The European Union has banned Nepalese airlines from flying to Europe. For more information on Nepal’s air safety profile take a look at Aviation Safety Network.

Weather and conditions for Mardi Himal

Mardi Himal 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 -10 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


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.


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.

Trip Reviews

Review by DaveG on 21/10/2019

4th visit to this wonderful country with the friendliest people I have ever met. Difficult to describe the joy trekking in Nepal brings as a life experience Pictures don’t do the majesty of Nepal justice The Nepalese people are always smiling, welcoming in a way many other countries could learn from Having used the Mountain Company for each visit ...

Review by Bruce on 24/11/2019

Mardi HImal Trek Experience. We had a great time on our Mardi Himal trek. Everything was well organized and went smoothly. Besides the actual trek we got to spend a few days in Pokhara and Kathmandu. That really helped introduce us to Nepal culture and people. The were very responsive during our planning and making our reservations. They had a comp ...

Review by Ian Grey 09/12/2019

Fantastic views. A very well organised trek. Flexible staff who ensure that customers receive the best possible trip and endeavour to solve problems quickly. Very prompt to respond The any questions. ...

11 DAYS FROM US$1675.00

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