Annapurna National Park (180 km from Kathmandu) is known for its Tibetan temples, monasteries and hot mineral springs. The path of pilgrims to the sacred cities of Mustang-Kagbeni and Muktinath passes through its territory, where Hindus, Buddhists and followers of the Bon religion coexist peacefully. The most important Buddhist shrine of Muktinath is the Temple of Fire of the Earth, within the walls of which an unquenchable fire burns, fed by natural gas from underground. Locals say that Shiva himself lives on the top of Mount Machapuchare, whose name translates as “fish tail”. See JIBIN123 for Nepal customs regulations and visa requirements.
The Annapurna massif is located in the southern spur of the Main Himalayan Range and is squeezed by two rivers: Kali Gandaki and Marsengdi. The highest point is Annapurna Main (8091 m), two more peaks of the southwestern spur are adjacent to it – Annapurna Middle (8010 m) and Annapurna East (8000 m), together forming one of the 14 eight-thousanders. Annapurna is the tenth highest peak in the world and the first peak conquered by man.
On the territory of the park are the highest peaks – Annapurna and Dhaulagiri, separated by the deepest valley on the planet, Kaligandaki.
There are three main routes for trekking around Mount Annapurna: Jomsom Trek, Sanctuary Trek, Annapurna Trek (Circuit Trek). Hiking around Annapurna is a rare opportunity to get to the very center of the Himalayas and get acquainted with the original culture of the locals: Gurung, Tamang, Thakali and Pokhari. Along the way, you can meet numerous Buddhist monasteries, Hindu shrines, suspension bridges and gorges. The most striking moment is the ascent to the Torung La pass (5416 m), from where a stunning view of the Main Himalayan Range opens. The route usually starts in Kathmandu, passes through mountain paths and ends in the city of Pokhara.
Annapurna base camp
The Annapurna Base Camp Trek lasts about 12 days, starting in Pokhara and ending in Nayapul. The best time to go is from March to June or from October to December. On the way you will see the base camp, located in the heart of the Annapurna mountain range, from here you can enjoy a gorgeous view of the peaks of Annapurna, Gangapurna and Machapuchare. Here is one of the best viewing platforms in Nepal – Poon Hill with a panorama of the peaks during sunset.
2 things to do in the Annapurna area:
- Visit the valleys of blooming rhododendrons during their spring bloom.
- Look into the largest Gurung village of Ghandruk.
Trek around Annapurna
The Annapurna Circuit or Annapurna Circuit is one of the most popular hiking trails along the slopes of the mountain range in the Annapurna National Park. Its length is 211 km, it lasts about 20 days.
You can gain strength at the Thorong La pass, where there are two tourist camps – Thorong Pedi and the Upper Camp. He takes his start in the village of Besisakhar, part of the way follows the valley of the Marsyandi River, passing through which it is impossible not to admire Mount Annapurna, the massifs of Manaslu, Peri Himal and Damodar Himal. The Annapurna Trek can be supplemented with a trip to Lake Tilicho, 16 km west of the village of Manang.
You can replenish supplies in the large settlements of Dharapani, Chame, Pisang and Manang. Near the village of Ranipauwa is the temple complex of Muktinath. In the Kali-Gandaki valley, the track goes through the villages of Jomsom, Marfa, Dana, Tatopan. At the end of the path, you will climb Mount Pun Hill, which offers a view of the eight-thousanders of Annapurna and Dhaulagiri. And in the final – Nayapul, a small settlement, from where you can return to Pokhara by bus.
Jomsom trek – hiking along the Kali Gandaki River from Nayapul to Muktinath. Not a very popular track, so not crowded.
In addition to the classic tracks to the base camp and around Annapurna, there is a shortened version with a length of 40 km along the route Birethanti – Gandrung – Ghorepani – Ulleri – Birethanti. It passes through rice fields, villages and tropical rainforests. The best time to complete the route is mid-late November.