Manaslu Circuit Trek is one of the best off-the-beaten-path treks in Nepal. The peace and solitude in this trek are unlike any other destination in Nepal. The scenic views of Manaslu and other mountains including Annapurna range are wonderful in the Manaslu Circuit Trek.
The Manaslu Circuit Trek lies above the foothills of the Gorkha District. You will encounter people of various ethnicities like Brahmins, Chhetris in the lower regions. But as you trek to the high altitude regions, you will meet Gurung people. The Gurungs of this region are adherents of Tibetan Buddhism.
You can see influences of Tibetan Buddhism in various places along this trek. During your trek, you will get to various monasteries like Kargyu-Pemba Chholing Gompa, Labrang (Lama’s Place) Gompa, Pungyen Nunnery, etc. These monasteries let you explore the Buddhism of this region. These monasteries are also set beautifully amidst the mountains surrounding this region.
Manaslu Circuit Trek by Mount Mania starts after a scenic drive through the hills surrounding Kathmandu valley to Arughat and finally to Soti Khola. The trekking trails then take you along the gushing waters of Budhi Gandaki river.
The trail passes through several farmlands, bamboo, rhododendron, oak, and pine forests as you trek to the highest point of this trek in Larkya La pass. This pass is set at an altitude of 5125 meters. The pass is one of the best vantage points to view several mountains like Pawar Peak (6,620m/21,720ft), Cheo Himal (6,820m/22,376ft), the Himlung pyramid (7,126m/23,380ft), Gyaji Kung (7,030m23,065ft), Kang Garu (6,981m/22,905ft) plus Annapurna II (7,937m/26,041ft).
One of the best places during the Manaslu Circuit Trek is the village of Samagaon. You will spend a day acclimatizing in this village. Exploration of this wonderful place includes the visit to the various Gompas as well as mountain viewing spots.
After crossing the Larkya La pass, you will descend into the dense forests of the Manaslu Conservation Area. You will cross some picturesque villages along the way like Samdo and Bimthang before finally getting to Dharapani. From Dharapani, you will take a bus ride to Kathmandu.
Mount Mania invites you to this culturally, as well as a natural, blessed place of Manaslu. Its fresh trekking trails with awesome landscape and an astonishing backdrop of mountains are every trekker’s delight.
Trip Highlights of Manaslu Circuit Trek
- One of the most popular restricted trekking regions in Nepal
- Amazing views of Mt. Manaslu (Eighth Highest Mountain in the world), Mt. Himalchuli, Ganesh Himal Range, Buddha Himal, Shringi Himal, and different peaks
- Cross Larkya La Pass, highest point of Manaslu Circuit Trek
- A scenic drive from Kathmandu to Arughat to Soti Khola
- Explore Budhi Gandaki Valley
- Explore the culture of Tibetan Buddhism in this region
- Walk in the serenity of the Manaslu region
- Visit Kargyu-Pemba Chholing Gompa, Labrang Gompa, Pungyen Nunnery, etc
- The beautiful Himalayan landscape of Budi Gandaki Valley River
- Experience the local multi-ethnic community, culture, and lifestyle
- Soothing Birendra Lake
Foods & Accommodation
Tea house accommodation is a basic lodge or hotel which have separate sleeping and dining room found in the Manaslu circuit trek routes. Teahouse owner offers home-cooked meals to travelers where you can enjoy popular meals Dhal Bhat (Rice and Lentils) and lots more.
After the earthquake, the Manaslu trek is very popular for its new and improved tea-house accommodation. With the establishment of teahouses around Manaslu, you don’t need to carry a tent, cooking utensils, and other camping materials.
If you book this trip with us, we will be offering the following services for food and accommodation:
- 13 Nights Teahouse accommodation during the trek
- 12 Breakfast, 13 Lunch, and 12 Dinner during the trek
Manaslu Circuit Trek Difficulty
The total length of the Manaslu Circuit trek is around 177 kilometers. You will be trekking for 10 days covering a distance of 15-20 kilometers every day.
Another factor that determines the difficulty of this trek is the uphills and downhills you will encounter along the way. Many times as you trek along the Budhi Gandaki river, the trek can be harrowingly steep. The trek up to Larkya La Pass is also quite challenging.
Manaslu Circuit Trek takes you to the highest altitude of 5,213 meters in Larkya La Pass. The altitude is high enough to incite altitude sickness. The trails also can get quite breezy making the trails quite cold.
Taking all of these things into consideration, the Manaslu Circuit Trek is a strenuous trek. As a result, you will have to be quite fit in order to complete this trek. 2-3 months of physical preparation will be necessary for you to complete this trek.
Manaslu Circuit Trek Best Time
Autumn (September, October, and November) is the most popular time for the Manaslu Circuit Trek. Autumn offers the most beautiful views of Manaslu as well as other mountains in the Annapurna Range.
Spring (March, April, and May) is the second most popular time for the Manaslu Circuit Trek. The rhododendron forests of the Manaslu Conservation Area light up beautifully in this season. The low rainfall in this season is another reason for the popularity of the spring season.
As you will trek to an altitude of more than 5000 meters in the Manaslu Circuit Trek, the trek can be quite cold in the winters (December, January, and February) with temperatures going as low as -20 degrees C. In the summer season (June, July, and August), the trails can be quite wet with the monsoon. So you will have to pack and prepare extremely well to trek in these two seasons.
Manaslu Circuit Trek Permit Cost
In total, you need three different permits for Manaslu Circuit Trek. The Permit costs for the trek depends on the different season. Following are the list of permits with the cost that you need:
1. Manaslu Restricted Permit:
- During September to November: USD 70 for the first seven days and USD 10 for each additional days
- From December to August: USD 50 for the first seven days and USD 7 for each additional days
2. Manaslu Conservation Area Permit (MCAP):
- MCAP Entry Fee for SAARC: NPR 1000 per person (Including Govt. Tax)
- MCAP Entry Fee for other nationals: NPR 3000 per person (Including Govt. Tax)
3. Annapurna Conservation Area Permit (ACAP):
- ACAP Entry Fee for SAARC: NPR 1000 per person (Including Govt. Tax)
- ACAP Entry Fee for other nationals: NPR 3000 per person (Including Govt. Tax)
4. Tsum Valley Permit (Optional)
- USD 35 for per person (1 week)
Above permits need to be applied with a minimum of two travelers. If you are planning to come as a solo. We will find the other travelers for you. For that, contact us via email.
Manaslu Circuit Trek: 10 Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Q. Can I trek the Manaslu Circuit Trek independently?
A. No, you can’t trek the Manaslu Circuit Trek independently or alone. According to the Nepal Government, minimum of two trekkers are compulsorily required to make Manaslu Circuit trek permit. You can’t trek alone due to safety and restricted region.
Q. Why Manaslu Circuit Trek is restricted?
A. You are not the alone to ask the question about why Manaslu Circuit Trek is restricted. One major reason behind this restricted region is that Nepal Government especially Nepal Tourism Board and other concerned governing bodies where they jointly aim to preserve this place for making it attractive to trekkers from all around the world. Another reason is to ensure security to trekkers while passing open border point – Larkya La Pass, Rui La Pass and Tsum Valley which shares the border with Tibet. Hence, Manaslu Circuit Treks is termed as a restricted region in Nepal.
Q. How difficult is Manaslu Circuit Trek?
A. To answer this question, you should know your physical fitness level. You should also be able to walk 6-7 hours a day. There is one special day, where you have to walk before sunrise to avoid storm at Larkya La. Because guide has a strict deadline to pass the Larkya La before noon which should be operated according to the itinerary. Similarly, at some point like Larkya La Pass (5160m), there is a step down which makes a little harder to pass due to the icy path. In that case, you can use crampon on boots to pass the icy path to reach Bimthang. Larkya La Pass is the highest point as well as the longest day in Manaslu Circuit Trek. If you complete this day, then another path is quite easy to trek down around the Annapurna Region.
If you have a willing power or dedication to complete the Manaslu Circuit trek. Then, it’s not that much difficult. In between the trekking, the guide will suggest you take a different level of walking pace depending on your destination. This will make your trekking a lot more physical friendly.
Q. If I am alone. Can I join with other trekkers for a permit?
A. Yes, you can join with other trekkers for a special trekking permit. For that, you must be flexible in terms of duration. In peak season, you will easily find another trekker for a permit. Whereas in low season, it’s quite difficult or time-consuming to find other trekkers who are heading to Manaslu for that particular month. If you inform us a month before arriving in Nepal. Then, we may find another trekker for a permit. Contact us.
Q. How is transportation from Kathmandu to Soti Khola start point?
A. From Kathmandu to Solti Khola start point, you will be traveling to hill-side via Prithvi Highway until Malekhu. After that, you will follow the narrow off-road till to Soti Khola. It’s quite a long off-road journey of about 7-8 hours. You have two options to get Soti Khola start point. The first option is to take four wheels private jeep, which can accommodate 7 people. Another option is to take a morning local bus from New Buspark, Kathmandu. Expect some crowd, local gossips, too many stops and opportunity to make new local friends as well as an adventure while traveling from the local bus.
Q. Do we need Travel Insurance?
A. Yes, you need travel insurance to overcome the unforeseen circumstances such as; Bad weather (Snow, Storm, Landslides and other natural disasters), Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS), food poison and physical accident.
Q. What sort of trekking clothing and equipment do we need for Manaslu Circuit Trek?
A. We have listed the trekking clothing and equipment you need for Manaslu Circuit Trek. Find here!
Q. What kind of food and accommodations can be found in Manaslu Trek?
A. Around Manaslu Trek, there are new as well as old teahouses which were built after the earthquake. So, don’t expect to get luxurious accommodations. You will get a room with a comfortable bed and shared a bathroom with a hot shower facility (private expenses). Nowadays, you can also get connected to wifi from teahouses (private expenses).
Talking about the food types, you can find the fresh local meal which will be made after your order. Expect to get some healthy foods as well as organic vegetables such as; Nepali Dhal Bhat, MoMo, Macaroni, Noodles, Pizza, and others. Don’t forget to take caution before drinking water. You can refill the safe drinking water (private expenses) from every teahouse situated around Manaslu Circuit Trek.
Q. Which is the best season for Manaslu Circuit Trek?
A. The best seasons for Manaslu Circuit Trek are March, April, May and the last week in September to mid-December. Peak season is in October. Low season is the monsoon (June to September) due to rain and haze weather. In December to late February to early March, there is a probable chance of winter snow and lodge will be closed mainly in Laryka Phedi, Bhimthang.
Q. What happens If I or my friends get sick while trekking Manaslu Circuit?
A. If you get sick while trekking, you can ask the guide for normal precautions. If that doesn’t help, try to go to a lower altitude for treating altitude sickness. And, the situation get worse such as; some sort of physical accident then our guide will help you to evacuate from trekking via rescue flight.