Annapurna Himal Things to Do

  • locals of the village with their instruments
    locals of the village with their...
    by davidjo
  • KAGBENI GOMPA
    KAGBENI GOMPA
    by davidjo
  • KAGBENI
    KAGBENI
    by davidjo

Most Recent Things to Do in Annapurna Himal

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    ANNAPURNA CIRCUIT AND ABC

    by davidjo Written Jul 30, 2014

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    I have trekked the Annapurna Circuit twice and also to ABC so this is an itinerary that you may want to follow. It can be done much quicker but i preferred to reach my lodge by around lunchtime and explore the surrounding area. Normally the trek would begin at Besisahar but i started one year from Gokha which is an interesting place to spend the day. From Gorkha to Besisahar is a long day's trek but it is possible.
    DAY 1 Besisahar to Ngadi 13 kms
    DAY 2 Ngadi to Jagat 12 kms
    DAY 3 Jagat to Tal 9 kms
    DAY 4 Tal to Chame 18 kms
    DAY 7 Chame to Upper Pisang 15 kms
    DAY 8 Upper Pisang to Bhraga or Manang 17 kms or 19 kms
    DAY 9 Manang rest day
    DAY 10 Manang to Phedi 15 kms--may be stuck in Phedi extra day due to snow on Thorang La
    DAY 11 Phedi to Muktinath 16 kms-- leave Phedi at 4 am to reach Thorang La early before the wind picks up. Exceptionally hard on the knees going down to Muktinath, you descend 1,200m
    DAY 12 Muktinath to Kagbeni 9 kms
    DAY 13 Kagbeni to Murpha 13 kms I prefer to miss Jomson
    DAY 14 Murpha, beautiful village, rest day, climb the hill behind Murpha
    DAY 15 Murpha to Kalopani 17 kms-- good views of Annapurna 1, taste rum at Tukuche Distillery
    DAY 16 Kalopani to Tatopani 20 kms-- relax in the hot springs
    DAY 17 Tatopani to Poon Hill 17 kms--climb the hill in the morning for sunset
    DAY 18 Poon Hill to Tadapani 12kms-- see the lamur monkeys in the area
    DAY 19 Tadapani to Chomrong 10 kms--beautiful village on the side of a hill
    DAY 20 Chomrong to Bamboo 6kms--aclimatise
    DAY 20 Bamboo to Deurali 6 kms--aclimatise
    DAY 20 Deurali to ABC 15 kms
    DAY 21 ABC to Chomrong 18 kms
    DAY 22 Chomrong to Birethanti 19 kms swim in the river
    DAY 23 walk an hour and catch bus to Pokhara

    TAL, view from my room UPPER PISANG CROSSING THORANG LA  5,416 metres KAGBENI NEAR TUKUCHE
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    KAGBENI, A SPECIAL PLACE

    by davidjo Written Jul 27, 2014

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    Whatever you do don't forget to spend a night in Kagbeni as there are many things to see.

    Kagbeni, an old trading village is probably about the most interesting village you will come across on the Annapurna Circuit, as there is a beautiful view to the north of the Kali Gandaki Valley that leads to Mustang. Traders used to travel up the valley to China and bring in salt, but in recent years the income is mainly from tourism. Kagbeni means 'bolt of the two rivers' and used to control the trade route. The village actually used to be a fortress and you can still see some of the ruined outer walls. The Big red building is the 550 year old Kagbeni Gompa which has a collection of masks and old Buddhist books. The books are paraded around the village during a festival.
    In the northern part of the village you can see the village protector to show bad spirits that he is stronger than them. Don't know if they had viagra in those days but he sure is big down below.

    KAGBENI GOMPA protector statue festival

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    PAUNGI DANDA----STAIRWAY TO HEAVEN

    by davidjo Updated Jul 25, 2014

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    A very interesting part of the trek is between Chame and Pisang where you will pass by the huge slopes of Paungi Danda, which will be on your right. This sweeping slope of 1,200 m is amazing as the black cliff side rises dramatically in to the clouds. It is often referred to as "the stairway to heaven"

    TREACHEROUS
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    MINATURE SHEEP

    by davidjo Written Mar 29, 2012

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    I came across some very small woolly sheep in a clearing just before arriving at Pisang. They couldn't have been more than 16 inches tall. LOOK out for them in that area as i never saw them elsewhere.

    TINY SHEEP

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    ARCHERY IN PISANG

    by davidjo Written Mar 29, 2012

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    I stayed a night in Pisang, a village clinging to the hillside to the east of the trail . Actually it is kind of like two villages as it is divided in to Lower and Upper Pisang. Fortunately there was an archery competition taking place as i found out as i rounded a corner and an arrow flew by my head. Archery here is the local sport and most of the children have bows and are busy firing arrows with sharp points at wooden targets. I then spent a the afternoon watching the locals compete, and i tell you that these guys really were skilful. So just check if there is a competition when you are passing by, it's interesting.

    ARCHERY COMPETITION PISANG

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    TUKUCHE

    by davidjo Written Mar 29, 2012

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    Tukuche is just is just 6kms from the picturesque village of Marpha and worth spending a couple of hours here just to visit the distillery which has been here for decades. Tukuche brandy is made from apricots and apples, and is pretty potent stuff. Tukuche sits on the west side of the river which is very wide here, but the village was a major trading village where caravans stopped and were taxed on their goods which were traded and even stored here. The village was one of the richest in the area, particularly during the salt trade, but relies mainly on tourism now.

    HORSEMEN NEAR TUKUCHE

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    GHANDRUNG

    by davidjo Written Mar 29, 2012

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    At Ghandrung we were lucky enough to catch a village festival which seemed to be organised by the women who danced and performed a mini play. I believe this was held in May but not sure if it is an annual event.

    LOCALS ENJOY THE FESTIVITIES GHANDRUNG MUSICIANS locals of the village with their instruments having fun
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    TAL

    by davidjo Written Mar 29, 2012

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    Tal, a village at 1700m is worth staying a night, There is a waterfall on the right hand side at the end of the village but it is extremely cold to take a quick shower. Tal means lake so there was originally a lake here before it was filled in by landslides caused it to silt up.

    ENTRANCE TO TAL (old photo) TAL FROM MY GUEST HOUSE (1981)
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    THORANG LA

    by davidjo Written Mar 29, 2012

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    Best to Cross the Thorang La from Phedi as you only have to ascend 1000m compared to 1600m from Muktinath. Some people manage it from Muktinath but this is very dangerous as you may get disorientated with altitude sickness, and even die. If you start from Phedi you would have a couple of days in Manang to acclimatise, then an early morning trek to Phedi where yu can spend a further night before the attempt of the Thorang La in the morning. We had an early breakfast at 4 am so we could leave with our flashlights at 4.30. The trail was easy to follow as it winds its way above phedi and it took us 2 hard hours to reach the pass. We were very fit as we had just come from a 30 day trek at Everest, so most people take a little longer than this. We had a wonderful view at the top ( a rocky desolate place) where we spent an hour before continuing down to Muktinath. Later in the morning it can become very windy (over 100km p h), and covered by clouds, so that is the reason to reach the top early.It was real tough on the knees coming down 1600m, so be careful not to fall. March, april, October and November there should be fewer problems crossing the pass but even then be prepared to spend extra nights in Phedi if there are unexpected snow falls. The rest of the year the pass would be very difficult to cross and it would be closed for the worst months.

    THORANG LA CROSSING THE THORANG LA
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    WHITE-WASHED WALLS OF MARPHA

    by davidjo Written Mar 29, 2012

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    While trekking around Annapurna schedule a stop in Marpha, which will remind you of villages on the Greek Islands as all the buildings have been white-washed. There is a narrow lane leading through the village where the locals will pass by with their herds of sheep/goats. The village is famous for apple pies and it is reputed that the best apples in the whole of Nepal come from this area. There are many quality guest houses in the village and two monasteries to visit. There is a trail leading up the mountain to the west, climb it to see a wonderful view.

    MARPHA GOATHERD
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    Praken Gompa & Monastery - Manang

    by Robmj Updated Sep 17, 2011

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    No doubt you will spend a day acclimatising in Manang, there are many day walks you can do:

    - Walk back to Bhraga which is a stunning village and go to the Lake (4hours) from here
    - Glacier walk fro Manang on Northern side
    - Monastery visit (the 1000 rupee Lama) via the Praken Gompa

    Of course you can easily relax in the town, there are a reasonable number of good eateries and bars in lodges. The valley is a stunning setting and views you get from climbing up to the Monastery are well worth the effort.

    Gompa above Manang
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    Chame

    by Robmj Written Sep 17, 2011

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    Chame is a bigger village and the district headquarters for the Manang district.

    The trip from Dharapani to Chame has some quite steep pieces but great views. On the way into Chame you get great views of Annapurna II weather permitting.

    Chame has a heap of lodges, internet cafes, trek-gear shops and other amenities.

    Just past Chame
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    Jagat

    by Robmj Written Sep 17, 2011

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    A good village for a stop. The village has quite a few teahouses and numerous places to eat and drink that are part of the teahouses.

    This was the first night on the trail having started at Bhulbhule having bused from Kathmandu. Jagat is a good alternative to the many who stay at Ghermu.

    All the villages are fine, so walk and stop when you feel tired.

    Jagat
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    Manang Culture Museum

    by tayloretc Written Jun 10, 2010

    If you ever wanted to poke into the corners of a local house, here’s your chance. The culture museum’s collection of common local tools, utensils, and clothes, are displayed in a traditional Manang house. It’s a pretty quick visit – a few rooms, but full of things. Most of the items are in the upper story (the lower story is a courtyard for livestock), which you get to via ladder.

    If there’s someone at the counter, you can buy a guide book, which strays a bit off topic, but has some interesting related information and suggestions for local places to visit.

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    Movies in Manang

    by tayloretc Written Jun 10, 2010

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    Since you have to stay an extra day in Manang to acclimatize, a movie at the High Vision Hall is a welcome break from hours of carom or cards. The theatre is exactly as big as it looks, and when I was there the screen was a TV and the chairs were benches, but it does have a fireplace. The odd power cut just means you get to meet new friends, and maybe a cliff hanger for the movie to give you something to ponder for the next week. With a good yak steak somewhere nearby, it's a pleasant evening after a hard day’s trek.

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