Trekking in the Annapurna Region with Glorious Himalaya

Thousands of hiking enthusiasts head to Annapurna in Nepal every year searching for adventure. Trekking around this region that has become a Mecca for hikers in recent years covers a fascinating range of cultural and geographical varieties that makes trekking here an experience of a lifetime. Most trekkers that visit follow the standard route to the Annapurna circuit but there are also a lot of other alternate treks that you can take if you can’t complete the circuit. One such trip that doesn’t require intense preparation is the Poon Hill Trek (it usually takes four days to complete). It’s one of the easier treks in Nepal that you can complete without a guide even if you’re visiting Nepal for the first time.

Day 1: Nayapul- Thikhedunga

trekking in the Annapurna Region

The starting point for most treks in the Annapurna region is Nayapul, a small mountain town near the popular tourist destination- Pokhara. If you’re leaving from Kathmandu, you will need the whole day to reach Nayapul since the roads in Nepal are in a pretty bad condition. However, if you’re starting from Pokhara you can reach Nayapul in around 2 hours. The walk to Thikhedhunga passes through Birethanti and Ramghai and is relatively easy. This shouldn’t take more than 4-5 hours walking unless you’re in a pretty bad shape.

Thikhedhunga is a great first stop and the views are simply amazing even though the altitude isn’t really high (1,500 meters). The accommodation options here aren’t great but the beauty of this charming village surely makes up for it.

Related: Guide to trekking Tsum Valley in Nepal

Day 2: Thikhedunga- Ghorepani

trekking in the Annapurna Region

The trek from Thikhedunga to Ghorepani is probably the hardest part of the trek that requires the most Stamina. To reach Ghorepani, you have to pass through Ulleri and more than 3,000 stairs. Even after you pass the stairs part you have to continue going up. On the second day, you will experience the biggest change in altitude: from 1,500 to 2,900 meters. You’ll be extremely tired by the time you reach Ghorepani but once you reach this divine mountain paradise you’ll forget all about your muscle soreness and fatigue.

Related: How to reach Everest base camp by helicopter?

Trekking in the Annapurna region

Ghorepani is amazing, especially in the monsoon, once the thick layers of mist surround the small mountainous town, adding another layer of beauty to this already gorgeous place. Keep a note that unless you’re in a good shape, you’ll need a porter to carry your bag. This was the day I was cursing myself for not getting one because I had to carry two backpacks (mine and my girlfriend’s) through 3,000 stairs and 1,500 meters of elevation. Glorious Himalaya’s porters are just as friendly and helpful as their guides.

If you’re planning to take the Poon Hill Trek or just go trekking in general, you’ll need a good backpack. Check out our list of the best hiking backpacks.

Day 3: Ghorepani- Poon Hill- Gandruk

Trekking in the Annapurna region

The third day is the one that requires the most walking. This is the day when the trek reaches its highest peak: Poon Hill at 3,200 meters above sea level. The hike from Ghorepani to the top takes approximately one hour and the best time to do it is at the sunset. You get to see how high you climbed as the sun rises above the distant mountains. Seeing where you reached and what you accomplished gives you an amazing feeling and the view is even better. Unless it’s the monsoon season. If that’s the case you probably won’t see anything but clouds and mist.

trekking in Nepal

After coming back down from the top, the terrain is much easier. There’s not much climbing left to do as you only need to complete the circle and go back to Nayapul. By the end of the day, you should be able to reach Gandruk, the biggest town you’ll encounter during this trek. It’s a beautiful town with amazing views of the Annapurna Circuit and many great accommodation options.

Related: Hiking in Kashmir

Day 4: Gandruk- Nayapul

Trekking in the Annapurna region

The last day includes a relatively easy walk from Gandruk back to Nayapul. However, don’t think that climbing down is easy. You might not feel it right away but your body sure will by the end of the day. For me, climbing down turned out to give more muscle soreness than climbing up. If you don’t think you can complete the walk, you can ask your guide to get a bus or a jeep in the Khimchi village (not too sure about the spelling).

If I go back in time, I would probably tell myself to bring a few more things. If you don’t want to make the same mistake, check out my Nepal packing list that will tell you what all you need to bring along for your Nepal trip. Additionally, if you’re interested in a more challenging trip, check out this post where I break down the costs of Annapurna base camp trek.

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9 thoughts on “Trekking in the Annapurna Region with Glorious Himalaya”

  1. I’m not a great hiker, and to be honest I’ve never considered heading to Nepal to make the trek. The area looks lovely and it looks like there are alternative options for those who want to embark on the trek. Sorry your girlfriend twisted her ankle, but I’m glad it was an overall good experience for you!

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