Nar Phu Valley is one of the most remote and very special trekking areas of Nepal. A newly opened region for trekkers, the landscapes are pretty similar of Tibet. A rugged and wild trek, this trek takes you to the exotic Nar Phu Valley that lies in the remote corner of the Annapurna region. It combines remote villages of Nar and Phu, very narrow canyons, beautiful forests, amazing rock formations, Yaks, ancient Monasteries, Kang La pass (5306m) and unique Himalayan cultures. This trek was open for tourist since 2003, which is populated by Nepalese Tibetans who depend on livestock. Especially Nar Phu valley Trek is popular as non touristic destination and also rich in typical cultural heritage
Nar Phu trek starts from Chamje after 9-10 hrs drive from Kathmandu, following the same trail as Annapurna Circuit trek. Or can drive to Dharapani and Koto. Koto village is main starting gate of Naar Phu Valley Trek. After arriving to Koto, we cross the bridge and follow the off the beaten track to Nar Phu valley in the north of Manang and Pass the Kang La (5306m) pass with magnificent panorama views of Annapurna. The Kang La pass links Naar with Manang and 3 other Bhotia villages in the Neyshang valley. The trek can return the same way back to Besishahar or continually can ahead over the Thorung La (5416m) Pass and end in Jomsom. We can either fly to Pokhara or drive to Beni and Pokhara by vehicle. We need special permit because Nar Phu Valley is restricted area.
Duration: 20 days
Type of the Trek: Tea House, Camping
Activities: Trekking, Culture Tours
Best Months: September to November and March to May
Maximum Altitude: 5416m (Thorang Pass)
Grade: Medium to hard
*Walk completely around Annapurna massif.
*Trek through lowland villages to the remote Naar Phu and Manang region and down the Kali Gandaki.
*Magnificent views of Annapurna, Manaslu and Dhaulagiri range.
*Experience different culture and visit ancient monasteries.
Day 1: Arrive in Kathmandu (1350m)
Our representative will meet you outside the customs and immigration area at the airport. He or She will brief you on the immediate arrangements and escort you to your hotel. The trip leader will hold a short briefing in the hotel regarding trek arrangements and general orientation to Kathmandu.
Day 2: Sightseeing in Kathmandu Valley
Today, we visit the most historical and Spiritual attractions in Kathmandu which are also listed in world heritage sites. We visit Durbar Square, Swayambhunath (Monkey temple), Bouddhanath, which is one of the largest Stupa in the world and the sacred Hindu temple of Pashupatinath.
Day 3: Drive to Chamje (1430m / 8-9 hrs)
We begin our journey early in the morning around 7 am. After breakfast we take private transportation for the drive to Chamje, trek starting point. As soon as you drive out of the Kathmandu valley you get panoramic views of the Annapurna, Manaslu and Ganesh Himal. As you descend the scenic winding road, the mountain views disappear and you drive along the Trishuli River before turning west at Mugling and drive against flow of Marshyangdi River. We stop in one of many wayside restaurants for lunch. Upon reaching the tropical town of Dumre, we leave the main road and take a narrower road going north and follow the west bank of Marshyangdi River with the view of tumbling white water, terraced hillsides and a beautiful mountain panorama to Besishahar. Besishahar is head quarter of Lamjung district. Here are many government offices, hotels, restaurants and shops. This is big town. From here we drive along the dusty and bumpy road to Chamje. Here are several hotels and shops in Chamje.
Day 4: Trek to Dharapani (1860m / 6 hrs)
Cross the Marshyangdi to the east bank and follow the trail along the river embankment on rocks and exposed wire. The trail passes under an overhanging rock, and then climbs a rocky trail and a steep stone staircase to a bhattis in sattle. Climb past fields, then through stands of bamboo and rhododendron to an exposed trail that traverses high above the steep river bank. The trail makes a short descend to Tal Besi, there are several bhattis at 1580m. From here it is steep climb beside the Marshyangdi, which has become an underground waterfall beneath huge boulders. The trail crests a ridge and the valley suddenly opens into a large plateau. In these dramatic settings, at a foot of large waterfall, is Tal, at 1675mt. There are many shops, lodges and very nice camping ground In Tal. There is another ACAP check post in Tal. Tal means “lake”. Tal is the southernmost village in Manang and it is the starting point of Manang district. The trail crosses the broad flat valley that was once a lake, through fields of corn, barley and potatoes, then crosses a small stream on a wooden bridge near 2 tea shops. There is a short climb, and then the trail makes its way along a cliff and along the riverbed to Shirental. A short distance beyond it climbs to a 60mt. long suspension bridge across the Marshyangdi River. Climb past several bhattis in Ningalghari. Follow a trail that has been blasted out of the side of the cliff past 2 waterfalls to the Khotro. Descend past a bhatti in the forest to a long high suspension bridge that leads to the east bank of the river and Karte. We follow up a stone staircase and over a ridge behind Kharte then drop to a suspension bridge that leads to the west side of the Marshyangdi. The trail climbs from the bridge to a stone kani that marks the entrance to Dharapani at 1860m, there are 2 parts to this village. There are many good lodges, shops, telephone office; police check post and some camping ground in this village. This is beautiful village.
Day 5: Trek to Koto (2600m / 5-6 hrs)
From Dharapani we turn west ward. Beyond Dharapani the trail passes a school and climbs over a spur before descending Bagarchhap. The vegetation changes into tall trees of blue pine, spruce, hemlock, maple and oak. About half an hour further we reach a village called Bagarchhap at 2160m. This is the first village on the trek with typical Tibetan architecture closely spaced stone houses, with flat roofs pilled high firewood. Here are several shops and guesthouses. The trail now travels west up the Manang valley with the high Himalayan peaks to the south. From here we get an excellent view of Lamjung Himal (6986m), Annapurna II (7937mt.and Annapurna IV (7525m) through the trees. And if we look down the valley to the west, Manaslu and peak 29 dominates the skyline. The trail climbs through forests to Dhanakyu, a settlement at 2290m with several hotels run by people from Bagarchhap. A broad level trail leads through forests to a wooden bridge near a spectacular waterfall then traverses a rock ledge. Climb over a ridge on a steep rocky trail and descend to the tiny settlement to Temang Besi. The route crosses several landslides and works its way uphill through forests to Lata Manang at 2360m. There are few small nice hotels. From here it is gradual ascends to Koto. The trail climbs over three steep forested ridges, and crosses a large stream before descending to Thanchok. Trek across another ridge to the entrance Chhorten of Koto (2600m), it is also known as kyupar in a meadow surrounded by huge pine and spruce trees. Here are several lodges, shops and camping ground in this village. The police check post here controls access to the Nar Phu Valley to the North.
Day 6: Trek to Meta (3560m / 7-8 hrs)
In the morning, we register our restricted area permit at the police check post. After then walk through the Soti Khola river bank, beautiful Pine forest, streams and Suspension bridge then arrive in Dharmasala. We eat our pack lunch on the way. We continue to walk through nice forests and steeply ascend towards Meta village. Finally, we arrive on the Tibetan Plateau. From here it offers wonderful views of Annapurna-II and Lamjung Himal.
Day 7: Trek to Phu Gaon (4250m / 7-8 hrs)
After breakfast, we start our day traversing ups, downs and cross several streams by suspension bridges. After about 4 hours walk, we arrive in Kyang where we can see the ruined forts of the Khampa settlement. This place was once captured and lived by Khampa refugees from Tibet. We continue to walk further past the Phu khola on a rocky trail and finally reach in Phu village. It takes about 3-4 hrs from Kyang.
Day 8: Excursion around Phu Village and Tashi Lakhang Monastery
Today is our acclimatization day. As we are in the Hidden Valley, we explore the local culture, natural diversity and religious practices. Besides this, we can see how people make their survival depending on agriculture, animals and seasonal migrations in such remote hidden valley. We also visit Tashi Lakhang Monastery which is listed out of the 108 world's great Buddhist Monasteries. It is supposed to be the last Monastery constructed by Karmapa Rimporche. We can see also wonderful views of Himlung Himal and other snow capped peaks. Overnight in Phu Gaon.
Day 9: Trek to Nar (4110m / 7 hrs)
Leaving Phu the trial descends passing several streams and suspension bridges until Mahendra pool. It takes about 4-5 hrs. We pass high suspension bridge over the gorge of Lapche River. We have lunch in Mahendra pool. After lunch the trail steeply ascends passing many Stupas to Nar Village, it takes almost 2-3 hrs. Here are several Monasteries and beautiful views of Pisang peak and other small peaks.
Day 10: Acclimatization day
Today, we spend the day doing day hike nearby and explore Nar Village. We visit also several Monasteries around here.
Day 11: Trek to Ngawal (3657m / 7-8 hrs) via Kang La Pass (5306m)
Today is adventurous day with very long walk. So, we get up early in the morning and climb up to the Kang La Pass. The Kang la pass is amazing; it offers magnificent views of Annapurna Range and other peaks. From here, we descend down to Ngawal.
Day 12: Trek to Manang (3540m / 5 hrs)
Today we start little late because of yesterday's long day. We pass through the isolated village of Paugh overlooking the amazing views of Annapurna range. Then, we move gently uphill to Mungje where we join with main trail of Annapurna circuit. The snow peak at the head of the valley is Tilicho peak, to the north of it is a black rock spire named Khangsar. The trail climbs past fields of barley over a low ridge to Braga at 3475m. Here are many good hotels, shop and beautiful large Monastery perched on a high crag overlooking the village. It is only a short walk, past Mani walls and a stream then arrives in plateau of Manang. This is large village, here are many good hotels, shops and restaurants.
Day 13: Trek to Yak Kharka or Churi Ledar (4018m - 4200m / 4-5 hrs)
From Manang village, the trail cross a stream, climbs to Tengi and then continues to climb out of the Marshyangdi valley, turning north-west up the valley of the Jarsang khola. The trail follows this valley north passing a few Goths as it’s steadily gains elevation. The vegetation now consists of scrub juniper and alpine grasses. The trail climbs to the small village of Gunsang at 3930m. There is an irrigation and hydroelectric project. Here are some hotels. The route passes through sparse forests of juniper, rose and barberry and a few meadows where horses and yaks graze. After crossing a large stream that flows from the peaks of Chulu west and Gundang, the trail passes an ancient Mani wall in a pleasant meadow. Beyond is Yak Kharka (4018m). Here are some hotels. A large herd of yaks graze in the fields nearby. Here are good grounds for camping near hotel. An hour further at 4200m is Churi Ledar. Here are some hotels and camping ground.
Day 14: Trek to Thorung Phedi (4450m / 4 hours)
From Churi Ledar the trail continues to climb along the east bank of the Jarsang Khola then descend and crosses the stream on a wooden bridge. Make a short ascent on a good trail to a tea shop. The route then follows a narrow trail across a high unstable scree slope and descends to Thorung Phedi, a rock –strewn meadow surrounded by vertical cliffs at 4450m. There are several hotels and police check post. There are camp sites by the river or at the main camp site about 10 minutes above the hotel. Many people schedule to leave from here at 3 am. Blue sheep and even snow leopards sometimes magically appear in this valley. The crow and the large birds can see. We reach in Thorung Phedi on time for lunch; therefore can spend the afternoon relaxing and saving energy for the next day’s climb. There is high camp in Thorung Phedi at 4925m but mostly tourist stay in first camp. Phedi means “foot of the hill” is a common Nepali name for any settlement at the bottom of a long climb.
Day 15: Trek to Muktinath (3760m / 8-9 hrs)
From Thorung Phedi trail becomes steep, switch backing up moraines and following rocky ridges as it ascends to the pass. Local people have used this trail for hundreds of years to bring herds of sheep and yaks in and out of Manang. So, the trail is well defined and easy to find. The crossing of the pass is just walk at high altitude and there is no technical problem. But if we are late to start, weather sometimes create problem. Therefore we make an early start. There is a steeper section at the beginning for about an hour after which the walk towards the pass is rather gradual uphill. It takes from 4-6 hours from Thorung Phedi to the pass. Thorung La, with its traditional Chhorten, prayer flags and stone cairn is at an elevation of 5416m. The views from the trail and from the pass are outstanding high Himalayan scenes. You can see the long ridge of high mountains called the “great barrier”. This separates the drier, Tibet like region of Manang from the rest of Nepal. Yakawa Kang (6484m) to the north and Khatung Kang (6483m) to the south. The Mukut and the Mustang Himal lies in the west with the Kaligandaki valley down below. The peaks of Chulu East and Chulu West lies on the north and the entire Annapurna ranges dominate the southern horizon. Descending down is steep and rough on the knees a loss of more than 1600m in about four hours. During the descend there are excellent views of Dhaulagiri standing alone in the distance across the valley. Eventually the moraines yield tom grassy slopes and the final descend to Muktinath is a pleasant walk along the upper part of the Jhong Khola valley. There are hotel at Chabarbu (4100m) where the grassy slopes begin. From Chabarbu, it is 1 and half hours to Muktinath. The trail crosses meadows drops into a deep ravine that is the start of the Jhong Khola. Climb out of the ravine and follows a wide trail into Muktinath which is the first village after crossing the pass. The temple and the religious shrines of Muktinath are about 90 meter from hotel area. It is not allowed to make camp in temple area. Muktinath is an important pilgrimage place for both Hindus and Buddhists. The holy shrines at Muktinath are in a grove of trees and include a Buddhist Gompa and the pagoda style temple of Vishnu mandir, containing an image of Vishnu. Around the temple is a wall from which 108 waterspouts, cast in the shape of cow’s heads, pour underground spring water. There is also a Buddhist temple containing a burning natural gas and a small spring emerging from the rock in the same vicinity. This auspicious combination of earth, fire and water is responsible for the religious importance of Muktinath. Muktinath is beautiful place where you can enjoy very much. Here are many good hotels, restaurants and shops. Here is also a police check post. Now, this place has been connected with motor able road with Jomsom and Beni.
Day 16: Trek to Kagbeni (2800m / 3 hrs)
We will spend the morning half either relaxing or exploring. After lunch we descend towards the kali Gandaki valley through the village of Jharkot back dropped by the sensational view of Dhaulagiri – I (8167m) and Nilgiri (7061m). Jharkot is an impressive fortress- like village at 3500m. There are several hotels with its picturesque Kani and large Gompa is well exploring. Across the valley we can see the ruins of Dzong, the ancient capital of this region and the smaller villages of Purang and Changur. We walk through the rough road and small trail. Passing the yellow barren landscape with dotted patches of green cultivation, we follow the windy trail and after a short steep descend we reach a former trading post of compact Kagbeni on the way to Mustang and to Tibet. Kagbeni looks like a town out of the medieval past, with closely packed mud houses, dark tunnels and alley ways, imposing Chhorten and a large ochre colored Gompa perched above the town. Now here are many new modern buildings. There are many hotels, shops and police check post in the end of the village. The ACAP office that administers upper Mustang is in Kagbeni. Here are some good camping grounds. Kagbeni and Muktinath have been connected with motor able road but the road is rough. If we don’t have enough time we can go direct to Jomsom from Muktinath.
Day 17: Trek to Jomsom (2720m / 4 hrs)
We head south through a wide, windswept and barren section of the Kali Gandaki valley. In the morning we follow the road and small trail on the left bank along the floor of the Kali Gandaki River. A little further south we pass through Eklebhatti and still further south we reach dusty and windswept town of the Jomsom in full view of Nilgiri Himal. Jomsom is the administrative headquarter of Mustang district. Jomsom is the gate way to the Mustang valley and Muktinath for pilgrims. Follow the main path past several hotels to the school after then, we cross the Kali Gandaki River by nice bridge. Here are 2 bridges. North of the airport, on the west side of the river, are shops, bhattis, shoe repair shops and a large army camp after then we inter into the main market area. There are many nice hotels, restaurants, shops and several airline branch offices. Here is an airstrip in the last part. Many daily flights operate from Pokhara to Jomsom. In this area mostly people are Thakalis. In the afternoon we can visit Jomsom market and cultural museum. From Jomsom to Kagbeni and Muktinath there is rough road but most of the time we use trekking trail and use road in few places.
Day 18: Fly to Pokhara (823m / 30 min)
From Jomsom to Pokhara is short flight. During our flight we can see very nice views of the mountains. We will fly along the Kali Gandaki valley and then through the middle of the Annapurna and Dhaulagiri ranges. During the day we can visit many interesting places in Pokhara. Pokhara is the most beautiful town of Nepal and it is surrounded by Annapurna range and nice hills. There are many famous lakes and viewpoints.
Day 19: Fly back to Kathmandu
You fly back to Kathmandu airport and transfer to hotel. In the afternoon we visit the Thamel market for shopping and then have farewell dinner at traditional Nepali restaurant with pure Nepali cultural program.
Day 20: Departure to your home
We will transfer you in international airport from your hotel.