Nepal: Annapurna Base Camp Trek

Angela Broderick

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Nepal

Annapurna Base Camp Trek


Nepal Annapurna ABC panorama

A spectacular trek that you'll never forget! Venture into the Annapurna Sanctuary – a natural amphitheater surrounded by some of the Himalayas' most spectacular peaks. Macchapucchre, known as the 'fish-tail peak', and Annapurna South loom large on the horizon at the beginning of the trek. At the Annapurna Base Camp, you'll be captivated by Annapurna I, rising over 8,000m into the sky.

This trek route passes through several Gurung villages, one of sixty ethnic groups in Nepal. The Gurung people are the predominant Nepali recruits in the famous Gurkha regiment of the British and Indian army. On this trek, you will climb up and down the infamous (and sometimes seemingly endless!) Gurung staircases along the Modi Khola. The trek starts out through terraced rice fields, gradually ascending to old-growth and bamboo forests and on to the Macchapucchre and Annapurna Base Camps. Macchapucchre is considered a holy mountain by the Gurung people and climbing Macchapucchre is prohibited.

Nepal Annapurna South from Dhampus

This is a great first-time trek in Nepal, and we are proud to partner with a top-notch local Nepali trek operator to give you the ultimate experience. Embark on this spectacular journey and experience the culture and hospitality of the Gurung people!

We have several cultural homestay options that we can offer as add-ons to this trek, from 1 night to 1 week or more -- highly recommended! We're happy to customize your Nepal trip to get the most out of your time in this amazing country.

PRICE INCLUDES:

  • All airport transfers
  • Full day in Kathmandu as indicated in the itinerary, including entrance fees to monuments.
  • 3 nights twin sharing hotel accommodation in Kathmandu
  • 2 nights twin sharing hotel accommodation in Pokhara
  • Tourist bus: Kathmandu to Pokhara
  • Airfare: Pokhara – Kathmandu
  • Meals as indicated in the itinerary
  • Chartered 4 x 4 vehicle: Pokhara to Kimche to Pokhara
  • Lodge trekking as indicated in the itinerary 
    • Three meals a day - you choose from a menu (no set meal) 
    • Boiled water for your bottles two times a day
    • Use of Steripen
    • Guide and staff wages, equipment and meals
    • Guide and staff insurance 
  • Annapurna Conservation Area Fee 
  • Trekkers Information Management Card

PRICE DOES NOT INCLUDE:

  • Your international airfare
  • Nepal Visa (Can be obtained on arrival at the Kathmandu airport - $40)
  • Meals not indicated in the itinerary
  • Tips and Gratuities 
  • Personal equipment (a suggested list will be mailed to you)
  • Your travel insurance (Required)
  • And other expenses of a personal nature

Sample Itinerary

Our itineraries are designed to let the country and its people guide your experiences. Please be flexible and allow the program to unfold.

DAY 1

Arrival in Kathmandu, Nepal

Welcome to Nepal! You will be greeted on arrival at the Tribhuwan International Airport at the arrival gate and transferred to your hotel in Kathmandu. At the hotel, you can freshen up or take a rest - the rest of the day is free.

In the evening, enjoy a welcome dinner which will include a briefing on the trip itinerary.

Overnight in Kathmandu

MEALS:  D


DAY 2

Exploring Around Kathmandu

After breakfast, drive to Pashupatinath, Nepal’s most sacred Hindu temple dedicated to Shiva, with its two-tiered golden roof and silver door. Shiva, meaning “The Auspicious One”, also known as Mahadeva (“Great God”), is a popular Hindu deity and is considered to be the Supreme God within Shaivism, one of the three most influential denominations in Hinduism. Here, you may witness a Hindu cremation along the banks of the Bagmati River and many ascetics and Sadhus.

Then on to Bhaktapur, which is located about 20 km east of Kathmandu in the Kathmandu Valley. Bhaktapur is known as the ‘City of Devotees’, the ‘City of Culture’, the ‘Living Heritage’, and ‘Nepal’s Cultural Gem’. It is one of the 3 royal cities in the Kathmandu Valley, along with Kathmandu and Patan. Bhaktapur is filled with terra-cotta monuments with carved wood columns, palaces and temples with elaborate carvings, gilded roofs and open courtyards. As a World Heritage site listed by the UNESCO, Bhaktapur has been heavily restored since a 1934 earthquake severely damaged the city.

Overnight in Kathmandu

MEALS:  B,L


DAY 3

Kathmandu - Pokhara

After breakfast, board a tourist bus to Pokhara. This bus is more comfortable and not as crowded as the local buses. It takes approximately 6-7 hours to get to Pokhara.

Overnight in Pokhara

MEALS:  B,L


DAY 4

Pokhara - Kimche - Chomrong

Today, you'll be driven in a 4 x 4 to Kimche where the trek begins. Descend to the Modi Khola and begin the gentle ascent to Jhinu. After lunch, ascend steeply to Chhomrong, a Gurung village, which is the highest permanent settlement in the valley. Chhomrong is a beautiful village located on the lap of Annapurna. There are great views of Annapurna South and Fishtail (Machhpuchure) facing across the valley.

Overnight at local lodge

MEALS:  B,L,D


DAY 5

Chomrong - Bamboo

Leaving behind the permanent settlements, you follow the Modi Khola Valley towards the Annapurna Sanctuary, soon arriving at the foothills of the Himalayas. Cross a suspension bridge and then trek up to Sinuwa Danda (7,742ft. /2.360m). The trail passes through thick and dark rhododendron forest up to Khuldighar (8,333ft/2,540m). You then enter a forest of predominantly bamboos.

Overnight in local lodge

CHOMRONG TO UPPER SINUWA (lunch stop):
Distance – 3.08 miles/5 kilometers
Ascent – 1,483 feet/452 meters
Descent – 1,096 feet/334 meters
Ascent time – 1 hour, 10 minutes
Descent time – 40 minutes
Flat time – 1 hour 25 minutes

UPPER SINUWA to BAMBOO:
Distance – 2.51 miles/4 kilometers
Ascent – 606 feet/185 meters
Descent – 686 feet/210 meters
Ascent time – 45 minutes
Descent time – 40 minutes
Flat time – 30 minutes

MEALS:  B,L,D


DAY 6

Bamboo - Himalaya

Today is a short trek of around 4 hours to help with acclimatization. The trail passes through thick bamboo, rhododendron and oak forest to the village of Dobhan (8,530ft/2600m). Continue to ascend gradually following the trail above the river up the side of the canyon. The trail continues through avalanche chutes and a few landslides to Himalaya.

Overnight at local lodge.

BAMBOO TO HIMALAYA (Lunch and Camp):
Distance – 4.47 miles/7.2 kilometers
Ascent – 1,997 feet/610 meters
Descent – 283 feet/86 meters
Ascent time – 2 hours, 15 minutes
Descent time – 20 minutes
Flat time – 50 minutes

MEALS:  B,L,D


DAY 7

Himalaya - Machhapuchare Base Camp

Today is another short trek day, again, to aid with acclimatization. You will find yourself above the treeline with amazing mountain views of Hiunchuli, Annapurna South, Annapurna I (26,545ft/8,091m), Annapurna III (24,786ft/7,555m), Gangapurna (24,455ft./7,454m), and Machhpuchure. The trail from Himalaya climbs gently through a river bed and rises steeply over the side of the mountain. Cross Hinku cave (10,400ft/3,170m). and Deurali (10,597ft/3,230m). About half an hour past Deurali, you will find yourself in the middle of a river bed surrounded by giant snow-covered mountains.

Overnight at local lodge

HIMALAYA to MACHHAPUCHARE BASE CAMP (Lunch and camp):
Distance – 5.64 miles/9 kilometers
Ascent – 2,931 feet/895 meters
Descent – 227 feet/69 meters
Ascent time – 3 hours, 15 minutes
Descent time – 20 minutes
Flat time – 1 hour, 35 minutes

MEALS:  B,L,D


DAY 8

Machhapuchare Base Camp - Annapurna Base Camp

From Machhapuchare Base Camp, it is approximately a 2-hour trek to Annapurna Base Camp – a collection of four hotels on a hillock. The view of the south face of Annapurna is fabulous from ABC. The vegetation fades and you enter alpine country. The trail takes you along a stream and climbs to a few huts along a moraine. Annapurna Base Camp is a natural amphitheater and offers a 360-degree panoramic view of the mountains.

Overnight at local lodge

MACHHAPUCHARE BASE CAMP TO ANNAPURNA BASE CAMP (Lunch and camp):
Distance – 2.14 miles/3.44 kilometers
Ascent – 1,379 feet/420 meters
Ascent time – 1 hour, 30 minutes
Flat time – 15 minutes

MEALS:  B,L,D


DAY 9

Annapurna Base Camp - Bamboo

Wake up early to witness the sunrise on the Annapurna ranges. Today is all downhill. After breakfast, you start your descent to Bamboo through MBC, Deurali, Hinku cave, Himalaya and Dobhan. After lunch, you re-enter the bamboo forest.

Overnight at local lodge

ANNAPURNA BASE CAMP to BAMBOO:
Distance – 12.25 miles/20 kilometers
Ascent – 510 feet/155 meters
Descent – 6,307 feet/1922 meters

MEALS:  B,L,D


DAY 10

Bamboo - Jhinu

Today, you continue down through the forest to Sinuwa and on to lower Chhomrong. Then again you ascend on the never-ending staircases to Upper Chhomrong. Continue further to Jhinu Hot Springs. The hot springs are a further 30-minute descent from Jhinu village on the banks of the Modi River.

Overnight at local lodge

BAMBOO to UPPER SINUWA:
Distance – 2.51 miles/4 kilometers
Ascent – 686 feet/210 meters
Descent – 606 feet/185 meters

UPPER SINUWA to CHOMRONG:
Distance – 3.08 miles/5 kilometers
Ascent – 1,096 feet/334 meters
Descent – 1,483 feet/452 meters

MEALS:  B,L,D


DAY 11

Jhinu - Ghandruk

Today is a short trek of around 3 hours to Ghandruk. Ghandruk is the largest Gurung village in the region.

Overnight in local lodge

MEALS:  B,L,D


DAY 12

Ghandruk - Kimche - Pokhara

Descend a short distance to Kimche where the trek ends. A 4 x 4 will pick you up and take you back to Pokhara.

Overnight in Pokhara

MEALS:  B


DAY 13

Pokhara - Kathmandu

After breakfast, prepare to fly to Kathmandu. There, the afternoon is free for shopping and exploring. Enjoy a farewell dinner on this final evening.

Overnight in Kathmandu

MEALS:  B


DAY 14

Departure

You'll be transferred to the airport for your international flight home, or consider extending your time in Nepal with an immersive village homestay.

MEALS:  B


PRICE

SPECIAL PRICE! $1,875 based on double occupancy in Dec/Jan/Feb, otherwise $2295 (July & August not recommended due to monsoon). Single supplement $250

DURATION

14D / 13N

DEPARTURE DATES

Custom dates available year-round except July-August


ACTIVITY LEVEL

Moderate-Challenging

ROUTE

Kathmandu - Pokhara - Chomrong - Bamboo - Himalaya - Machhapuchare Base Camp - Annapurna Base Camp - Bamboo - Jhinu - Ghandruk - Kimche - Pokhara - Kathmandu

PROGRAM ELEMENTS

Trekking, customizable



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