Annapurna Sanctuary Trek

Annapurna Sanctuary Trek
Annapurna Sanctuary Trek
Annapurna Sanctuary Trek
Annapurna Sanctuary Trek
Annapurna Sanctuary Trek
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  • Overview
  • Itinerary
  • What's Included
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  • Exodus

One of the best treks through some of the most diverse scenery of Nepal

The Annapurna Himal is a vast massif with several peaks above 7000m. Part of the range forms a natural amphitheatre known as the Annapurna Sanctuary, ringed by such giants as Annapurna 1, Glacier Dome, Gangapurna, Fang and Machhapuchhare. The trek starts through forested hillsides before arriving into the Sanctuary with its panoramic views of the Annapurna. At higher altitudes the close-up mountain views are perhaps the finest in the world. There is a day to explore this breathtaking mountain arena before returning to Pokhara via a different route.

Highlights
* Stay overnight at Annapurna Base Camp surrounded by mountains * Explore the Annapurna Sanctuary, a huge amphitheatre ringed by glistening peaks * Enjoy sunrise views of Dhaulagiri, Machhapuchhare and the Annapurnas from Poon Hill  * Trek through magnificent forests, terraced fields and pretty villages * Time in historic Kathmandu and lakeside Pokhara
Food

Breakfast is included throughout the trip. On trek the breakfast will be a fixed set menu usually consisting of porridge or muesli, with either toast, chapatti or pancake, plus an egg or omelette and a cup of tea/coffee. Any additional items that are not included in the set menu should be ordered and paid for separately. We do not include lunch and dinner on trek allowing you to choose what you want to eat. Lunch will be taken at a teahouse en route - sometimes one of your guides will go ahead with the group’s order to make it more expedient. Dinner will be in the same teahouse that you sleep at (this is custom in Nepal as teahouses base their room rate on it). The menus in the lodges are almost identical to one another but offer a varied choice, ranging from traditional Nepalese dhal bhat to pizza and apple pie. Dhal bhat is the staple diet in Nepal and comes in many different forms but generally comprises some curried lentil dhal and meat or vegetables, some rice, and a pickle/chutney. Another popular snack is momos; a type of Nepalese dumpling, fried or steamed, filled with meat or vegetables. Although meat is available in the teahouses, we advise against eating it on trek. The meat has often been carried in the heat from lower altitudes for several days before reaching the lodges and can cause stomach upsets or illness. Germs can also be spread by handling dirty money - we recommend using hand sanitiser. If you have a gluten free diet, then we strongly recommend you bring some extra food and snacks with you to supplement the food on trek as there will be little variety available for you, particularly for breakfast. Even many of the soups are from powder/packets and contain gluten. If you buy imported food and drink whilst on trek you will spend more than the suggested amount. *Drinking Water* Staying hydrated is important when undertaking any physical activity but particularly so at altitude where it is generally recommended to drink at least 3-4 litres per person per day. We strongly encourage you not to buy bottled water on trek as this contributes to the growing problem of plastic pollution in Nepal’s trekking areas. A few villages along the Annapurna Sanctuary route have safe drinking water stations selling UV treated water for Rs40-50 per litre but these are not always open. The teahouses also sell boiled water for approx. Rs150-300 per litre (the price increases the higher you trek) which should not require treating. This is also perfect for a bedtime refill as it can double up as a hot water bottle. Alternatively, all teahouses will provide cold water free of charge, if requested. Although this should not be drunk untreated, we recommend that you bring a reusable bottle (or two) and use an effective form of water treatment. There are a wide range of products available these days which are more effective than traditional purification tablets - we recommend talking to an outdoor retailer for the latest advice as technologies are improving all the time: make sure to check the product’s performance in cold/freezing conditions and consider battery life (lithium batteries are best in cold conditions). Handheld UV filters such as a ‘SteriPEN’ are widely available to purchase from online retailers such as Amazon and Ebay – they’re very effective, can treat 1 litre of water in a couple of minutes and the water is ready immediately – look for lightweight lithium battery models and remember that you will need to bring a wide-mouthed bottle (e.g. Nalgene) for use with these devices. There are also an array of water filter and purifier bottles on the market but be wary of their weight, bottles with a small capacity and the products performance in freezing conditions. Exodus has partnered with Water-to-Go, a filtration system that eliminates over 99.99% of all microbiological contaminants from any non-salt water source – please visit https://watertogo.eu/exodus/" target="_blank">Water-to-Go for more information*. Exodus customers can claim 15% off your first order, and better still, 15% of the purchase value will be donated to the **Exodus Travels Foundation [1]**.* Please note that if the water freezes it will clog up the filter – in this event, defrost before use by sitting the filter in lukewarm water for 10-15 minutes. [1] node/211076

Destinations
  • Kathmandu
  • Pokhara
  • Annapurna Region
  • Asia
  • Nepal
  • Annapurnas
  • The Himalayas
  • Annapurna
  • The Himalaya
Tour Types
  • Point-to-point
  • Natural Wonders
  • Scenic
  • Walking
  • Active
  • Mountains
  • Walking & Trekking
  • Snow Activities
  • Trekking
  • Adventure
Day 1

The group flights depart London this evening. **



Day 2

The group flights arrive into Kathmandu this afternoon. There will be a full trek briefing this evening. *Hotel Ambassador / Manaslu (or similar)*



Day 3

We leave early and drive westwards to Pokhara. This town is set in a beautiful valley and is overlooked by the Annapurnas and Machhapuchhare, one of the most distinctive of the Himalayan peaks. We continue through Pokhara to Naya Pul and from there have a 30-minute (2km) walk to the village of Birethanthi, where we stay overnight. Birethanthi is a riverside village at the confluence of the Modi Khola and the Burungdi Khola. If there is time we can bathe in the clear but cold pools of the Burungdi Khola. *Teahouse*



Day 4

We start our trek by following the Burungdi Khola upstream. After a lunch stop in Tirkhedunga (renowned for its variety of local beer called chang) we start the long steep climb up a stone staircase through the neatly terraced hillsides to the top of Ulleri. Continuing through Ulleri we stop tonight at lower Banthanti. *Teahouse *(sleeping altitude 2,240m)



Day 5

The trail winds its way onwards and enters rhododendron forest. In spring the forest is ablaze with colour. Trains of mules provide colourful and noisy interludes to the continuous ascent today (there are many stone staircases). Carrying rice and other supplies north to the kingdom of Mustang the trail resounds with the sound of their bells. Finally, we emerge from the forests at Ghorepani and suddenly a splendid mountain vista appears before us - Dhaulagiri, Annapurna, Hiunchuli, Machhapuchhare, Lamjung and other Himalayan giants. We continue up through Ghorepani to our lodge in Upper Ghorepani (2,900m), usually arriving by lunchtime. *Teahouse *(sleeping altitude 2,900m)



Day 6

This morning there is an optional ascent of Poon Hill (3,210m - about an hour's walk uphill) to see the spectacular sunrise over the Dhaulagiri and Annapurna Himals. As the sun emerges from behind the mountains the sky glows red and pink in the first rays of the sun and the panorama is surely one of the world's great mountain vistas. Best seen at dawn, the climb is well worth the effort. After breakfast we head east, following a ridge to cross a pass at 3,150m. We pass through more forest and some tea houses and then the descent becomes steeper as we descend on stone steps through jungle to a few lodges in a clearing called Banthanti at 2,760m, where we have lunch. Descending further to a small stream, we cross a bridge and climb back up to 2,690m at Tadapani where we have a superb view of Annapurna South and the peak of Machhapuchhare. From here we descend for a short while to our lodge at Chuili, where we have great views of the mountains from the lovely garden. *Teahouse *(sleeping altitude 2,290m)



Day 7

The trail descends steeply through the forest to the Kyumnu Khola, a tributary of the Modi Khola. From here a steep ascent brings us to Chhomrong, at 2,220m, another Gurung village and the last permanent settlement in the valley. Beyond here we shall see yersas, the shelters used by herdsmen in the summer months. From Chhomrong we have good views again of Annapurna South and from this point onwards the twin-peaked mountain Machhapuchhare ('fishtail') which gives the mountain its name. *Teahouse* (sleeping altitude 2,220m)



Day 8

The trail from Chhomrong descends first on a stone staircase to cross the Chhomrong Khola and then climbs steeply on another stone staircase out of this side valley to Sinuwa, where we enter the main Modi Khola Valley. From Sinuwa the trail descends on stone steps through dense jungle and then undulates to lunch at Bamboo, a cluster of lodges in a forest clearing. The forest around us is full of bamboo thickets. These are cut extensively to make 'dokos' - the carrying baskets as used by our porters - and woven mats for floors and roofing. Undulating further through the bamboo forest we reach Dobhan at 2,500m, another small clearing in the forest where there are several teahouses. *Teahouse *(sleeping altitude 2,500m)



Day 9

A tough day today as we walk above 3,000m. The trail continues up through the forest, passing the lodges at Himalaya Hotel. From here the trail gets steeper and rockier as we climb up past Hinko Cave, where the first expeditions to the Base Camp used to camp. Crossing a ravine, the trail continues to climb steeply among boulders, leaving the trees behind us. We have lunch at Deurali and from here the valley broadens out and the scenery becomes wilder as we approach the gates of the sanctuary. From Deurali there are two trails. The one on the left side of the valley is the main trail but especially in spring when there is a lot of snow it is not used and an alternative trail on the right side of the valley is used. Your leader will decide which trail to use. Both trails finally meet for the last 1.5hr climb up between the heights of Hiunchuli and Machhapuchhare, to Machhapuchhare Base Camp (3,700m), where we spend the night. The views are stupendous and the panorama includes Huinchuli, Annapurna 1, Annapurna 3, Gangapurna and Machhapuchhare. *Teahouse *(sleeping altitude 3,700m)



Day 10

In the early morning, we walk for 2 hours up to Annapurna Base Camp (4,130m), surrounded by the snow-capped peaks of some of the highest mountains in the world. Hiunchuli, Annapurna South, Annapurna Fang, Annapurna 1 and 3, Gangapurna and Machhapuchhare all encircle us with unbroken soaring ramparts but for the route by which we entered. The sunset and sunrise are truly magnificent in this mountain arena. We spend the day in this special place with a chance to watch the sunrise the following morning. There should be time to make an excursion to the ridge overlooking the base camp from which Sir Chris Bonington led the ascent of Annapurna's South Face. (Occasionally there is too much snow to stay at Annapurna Base Camp. In this case, we would walk back down to Machhapuchhare Base Camp in the late afternoon). *Teahouse* (sleeping altitude 4,130m)



Day 11

A long and mostly downhill day as we leave the Sanctuary. We follow the same trail back to Machhapuchhare Base Camp and further down to Deurali. Entering the forest, we descend slowly and carefully on a rocky trail through Himalaya and Dobhan back to the lodge at Bamboo. *Teahouse* (sleeping altitude 2,330m)



Day 12

A rollercoaster walk today with lots of ups and downs. We start with a climb up to Sinuwa, then we descend to the river and climb back up the stone steps to Chomro. A final steep descent on stone steps brings us to Jhinnudanda. Close to Jhinnudanda, there are some hot springs that you can visit if you wish; getting there involves descending for twenty minutes or so down to the river, and the climb back up takes a little longer (around 30 mins). *Teahouse* (sleeping altitude 1,710m)



Day 13

The trail today undulates down the Modi River Valley. We follow the valley down to the road head at Sinwai. If the road is in good condition, we will pick up our transport here (sometimes our vehicle cannot get to here) and drive back to Pokhara. If we have to walk to Birethanthi this will add an additional 3 hours/10 km. *Hotel Lakefront / Hotel Dahlia / Mount Kailash Resort (or similar)*



Day 14

A full day to relax in Pokhara. There are plenty of cafés and restaurants along the lakeshore where you can watch paragliders in flight. You may wish to take a rowing boat across Lake Phewa and walk up to the World Peace Pagoda, set on a hill overlooking the lake with fantastic views. There are also plenty of shops and a traditional bazaar where you can pick up some souvenirs. Alternatively, there are several museums to visit, including the International Mountain Museum and the Gurkha Museum. *Hotel Lakefront / Hotel Dahlia / Mount Kailash Resort (or similar)*



Day 15

We fly to Kathmandu. Weather depending there should be good views of the western end of Nepal on this flight. The afternoon is free for sightseeing. You may wish to visit the monkey temple at Swayambhunath, one of the largest Buddhist Stupas in the world at Boudhanath, or the most important Hindu temple in the valley at Pashupatinath.   *Hotel Ambassador / Manaslu (or similar)*



Day 16

The trip ends after breakfast. Those on the group flight will be transferred to the airport for the flight back to London. Those not on the group flight will leave us after breakfast. **



* All breakfasts  * Morning bed-tea on trek * Welcome drink at each overnight lodge * 4 nights standard hotels and 10 nights teahouses * All transport and listed activities * Tour leader throughout, plus local staff (staff to client ratio of 1:4 on trek) * Flights from London (if booking incl. flights) * Arrival and departure transfers * Full porterage throughout trek * Exodus kitbag  * Trekking map (provided locally) * Trekking permit and national park fees


Fantastic Trip!

This was our first trek and we we struck gold - the scenery and people of Nepal are beautiful. They have left a lasting impression and a return trip is a must. The porters and guides looked after us - lugging our gear and organising food and accommodation, pointing out wildlife and keeping us safe - always smiling, they created a real family feel to the group. I miss the early morning wake up call of a cheerful Namaste with a cup of tea and a stunning sunrise.

Rating: 5




Annapurna sanctuary

This was an amazing trip with Poon hill sunrise and Annapurna base camp sunrise , both of which we were spoilt on clear skies and lovely weather, The guides and porters were all amazing, trying to communicate with their broken english, our main guide Milan was fantastic , with his knowledge of mountains and other areas in nepal. I would highly recommend this trip, just be sure that you love steps and that you love mountains and breathtaking views!!

Rating: 5




Himalayan Highs

1st time in the Himalayas and what an introduction. Expectations were high but easily exceeded, both by the scenery and the people (guides, porters and fellow travelers). The trek was challenging but hugely enjoyable, helped greatly by the brilliant weather that allowed us the best views of the stunning mountains and valleys. Our guide, "Milan" and his team of assistants and porters were phenomenal, making everything run smoothly for us pampered western travelers. It was humbling to see how they and the local people cope with what seem harsh conditions compared to those many of us take for granted at home. Overall, an excellent trip that I would not hesitate in recommending to others.

Rating: 5




Trip of a lifetime

From the moment we met our guide, he talked about us becoming a family for the next fortnight as he wanted us all to stick together. This we did and it really made our trip special. He, our porters and two assistant guides looked after us every step of the way. The high mountains were tantalisingly shy for the first few days, but then gradually showed themselves to us. Simply stunning.

Rating: 5




Great way to get into nature

Nepal has always been a place I have wanted to visit, especially due to the fact it hosts some of the tallest mountains in the world. I chose the Annapurna Sanctuary Trek because I wasn't sure my reaction to the high altitude of Everest Base Camp and also it was different. I lucked out with my trip for many reasons: small group (5 trekkers, 2 guides, 3 porters), good weather (sunny and clear mornings, no rain while walking), great guides (Ram and Maila took great care of us and made sure we all made it up to ABC and back with no incidents). During our trek we saw many other groups, specifically on the first few days and it surprised me that their "guides" did not keep the group together or seem to be properly pacing. The Exodus guides made sure we took smart breaks and typically had one person leading, the other at the back so as to not leave people behind or spread the group out too much. For me, waking up each morning getting closer and closer to ABC, seeing the sunrise gleaming off the white snowy peaks of the Annapurna range, those are images that are forever engrained on my memory (and camera). This trek has lots of stone steps, and although I consider myself physically fit, it is demanding. However, the payoff is seeing the beauty of Nepal and being removed from modern amenities like cars and other conveniences. I found the food in the tea houses good value for the money, especially Dal Bhat, which is almost an 'all you can eat' meal. Overall the trip is a great way to see the Himalayas and experience a bit of Nepalese culture.

Rating: 5




Annapurna Guides, Porters and Sherpa - Easily the best!

The trip was made by a combination of two excellent guides, a wonderful hard working team of porters and a cheerful experienced Sherpa. They all work incredibly hard in their respective roles and simply made the holiday. Always encouraging, helpful and cheerful. Nothing was too much trouble for them. Easily the best guides of all my many Exodus trips, they were devoted to their role. It is incredible how the porters manage to carry such loads. Tourism is a major economic force for Nepal and without them tourism would cease in its current form. They are the unsung heroes and must be supported including financially as it is a dying skill, sad for Nepal and for those of us who loved our trip.

Rating: 5




Great time in great mountains

The Annapurna Sanctuary trek was well organized and I have thoroughly enjoyed it. It can be physically challenging at times (e.g. climb 3000 stairs in one go at the end of a walking day), but completely doable without many difficulties.

Rating: 5




A wonderful trek in the very heart of Nepal's Annapurna

Annapurna Sanctuary is 14 days of an excellent trek, which is very well organised, with excellent and attentive guides. It is great scenery, with such majestic and magnificent Mountains. You stay in sustainable, if frugal, Tea Houses offering great sustenance, which is all part of the fun experience.

Rating: 5




A wonderful trek in the very heart of Nepal's Annapurna

Annapurna Sanctuary is 14 days of an excellent trek, which is very well organised, with excellent and attentive guides. It is great scenery, with such majestic and magnificent Mountains. You stay in sustainable, if frugal, Tea Houses offering great sustenance, which is all part of the fun experience.

Rating: 5




Comfortable trek with beautiful scenery

This is the third trek I've done in Nepal, the fourth in the Himalayas. I enjoyed the trek, found it easier than Everest Base Camp, the Annapurna Circuit and Ladakh- the Markha Valley. Yes, the numerous stone 'staircases' were a bit tough at the time, but very do-able and we were not rushed but had plenty of stops to catch breath and drink water. The tea-houses were OK (I always find the basic level of accommodation, especially the toilets & showers, also the rooms a tougher personal challenge than the actual walking) - the food they offered was OK (I didn't get sick!!), if a bit repetitive. The scenery was beautiful - big mountain landscapes, valleys with rippling streams and waterfalls, small villages and families farming their terraces using water buffalos and wooden ploughs. Always, the high snowy peaks were in the background. Add to that the colourful rhododendron forests and tiny bamboo bridges. When we first arrived at the Annapurna Sanctuary, I was a bit disappointed as there was no snow on the ground....and muttered to my friend 'Oh no, just a load of old rocks!!', but then, as we arrived at ABC, it started snowing heavily...and snowed and snowed all afternoon. The next morning, we trekked back across the flattish section between ABC and MBC and it was stunning - a perfect 'winter wonderland' and everything i'd hoped for. This trek reached a lower altitude than I had experienced on my previous Himalayan treks and I was fortunate not to experience any symptoms of altitude sickness at all (whereas I did have some (manageable) symptoms on the previous ones. Sunrise at Poon Hill was also a delight. I'd experienced this once before when on the Annapurna Circuit, but, unfortunately, on that occasion, although we climbed the hill, there was no view to be had - it was all obscured by clound. However, on this occasion, Mother Nature decided to reward my persistence and we were greeted by beautiful views of the mountains.

Rating: 5



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You will have the option to book your own flights independently with the operator.

Dates Price Single Availability
26-Mar-2021 for 15 Nights Flight inclusive adult Flight Included Visit website
27-Mar-2021 for 14 Nights Land only Visit website
09-Apr-2021 for 15 Nights Flight inclusive adult Flight Included Visit website
10-Apr-2021 for 14 Nights Land only Visit website
01-Oct-2021 for 15 Nights Flight inclusive adult Flight Included Visit website
02-Oct-2021 for 14 Nights Land only Visit website
22-Oct-2021 for 15 Nights Flight inclusive adult Flight Included Visit website
23-Oct-2021 for 14 Nights Land only Visit website
05-Nov-2021 for 15 Nights Flight inclusive adult Flight Included Visit website
06-Nov-2021 for 14 Nights Land only Visit website
12-Dec-2021 for 15 Nights Flight inclusive adult Flight Included Visit website
13-Dec-2021 for 14 Nights Land only Visit website
11-Mar-2022 for 15 Nights Flight inclusive adult Flight Included Visit website
12-Mar-2022 for 14 Nights Land only Visit website
08-Apr-2022 for 15 Nights Flight inclusive adult Flight Included Visit website
09-Apr-2022 for 14 Nights Land only Visit website
22-Apr-2022 for 15 Nights Flight inclusive adult Flight Included Visit website
23-Apr-2022 for 14 Nights Land only Visit website
30-Sep-2022 for 15 Nights Flight inclusive adult Flight Included Visit website
01-Oct-2022 for 14 Nights Land only Visit website
14-Oct-2022 for 15 Nights Flight inclusive adult Flight Included Visit website
15-Oct-2022 for 14 Nights Land only Visit website

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tour details

This tour is operated by Exodus

15 nights from pp exc.flights; per Night
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Group Size:4 - 16
Suitable For: 16 to 99
Difficulty:Moderate / Challenging
Meals:14 breakfasts, 0 lunches, 0 dinners.
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