Annapurna Circuit and Tilicho Lake Trek
Detailed info about Annapurna Circuit and Tilicho Lake Trek

Annapurna Circuit and Tilicho Lake Trek

When the morning rays reflect on the surface of the snow-clad Himalayas, the energy they radiate is very absolute. The majestic Annapurna, Manaslu and Dhaulagiri mountains are spectacular in this vintage trek and it never fails to captivate the trekkers with jaw-dropping adventure.

Deepak Raj Bhatta
Author | Deepak Raj Bhatta Date Published:
Annapurna Circuit and Tilicho Lake Trek

The classical Annapurna Circuit, which dates back to the era of the 1960s when the trail was used for the daily chores by the locals, later emerged as one of the most admired and fascinating trekking trails in the most diverse Annapurna region of Nepal. Trekking in the Annapurna Circuit and Tilicho Lake offers an unspoiled atmosphere and best-preserved cultural practices of Gurungs and Thakalis. 

A wide range of terrestrial differences is the major attraction of the trek. From the semi-tropical to alpine climate and lush greenery to arid geography attracts a lot of people for trekking every year. Delightful farm stays, amusing atmosphere and most charming Gurung and Thakali culture prevail over a solitary lifestyle and traditions in the remote mountains. 

Trekking through the villages of Annapurna inhabited by Chhetri, Brahmin, Gurungs, Thakali and Bhote opens up an opportunity to explore the cultural variations in the mindblowing Annapurna range of Nepal. The rich and diverse ethnicity is the major cultural artefact of the trek, it also offers a wide range of contrast in the topography of Nepal. 

The glorious Annapurna is spectacular in most parts of the trek. The alpine Sapphire like Tilicho Lake, also the highest lake in the world, is very astonishing. Lush greenery, arid valleys, beautiful small village settlements, mountain panorama and the beauty of the spectacular Himalayan range that begins with a drive to Besisahar to the far off in the Manang valley. The routing to one of the highest passes of Nepal, Thorong La Pass, descending to the Muktinath and Jomsom offers a vivid atmosphere to explore.  

The beginning of the trek in Besisahar has a lush touch, but as you move towards the higher elevation, the semi alpine and arid climate have wonderful experiences to offer. The emerald enriched Tilicho Lake, at an elevation of 4970 m. is the major highlight but there are other attractions that surely fulfil the joy of traversing in the not so extreme, but one of the best trekking areas in the higher elevations of Nepal. 

The human settlement in most parts of the trekking is a distinct feature of the trek. The habitats in the upper elevations, unlike the Everest region, are not sophisticated and diluted, thus remaining a virgin till this time. Tibetan influence in the cultural practices is admirable and the lifestyle of people along the mountainside is an amazing presentation of the trek. 

Trekking to Tilicho Lake via the classic Annapurna Circuit also adds a wonderful spiritual essence. The Gompas and Buddhist monasteries feature the religious enrichment of the region and after crossing the dry steep Thorong La Pass, Muktinath adds a beautiful symbiosis of both the Buddhist and Hindu cultural practices. Muktinath is revered as a place of liberation and Moksha.

Table Of Content

    Trek Overview

    The Classical Annapurna Circuit, as of today, was not fragmented in the beginning. In the old times, people used to trek this whole area to transport goods and livestock for their livelihood. Later, with the beginning of road transportation facilities in the lower parts, the trail fragmented and became easier than before. During that time, it used to take about 20 days to a complete month to trek in the whole area, but now it can be completed in 10-20 days, depending on the itinerary you follow and place from where you begin and conclude your trek. 

    After arriving in Kathmandu, you will explore the monuments and heritage sites around the city and prepare for trekking in the Annapurna region. The advantage of this trekking is you can explore Pokhara too, the adventure city of Nepal. You embark on your journey to Tilicho lake with a drive from Kathmandu.

    The beautiful villages of Chamje, Dharapani, and Chame lead you to the beautiful village of Manang. After day acclimatization in Manang, you will trek to the wonderful Tilicho Base Camp. The amazing oligotrophic Tilicho Lake is the major attraction from Tilicho Base Camp. The beautiful mountains and glacial lakes in this area are very attractive. You will descend to 4080 m at Sri Kharka. The trail to Yak Kharka and Thorong Phedi will take you to the Thorong La Pass at an elevation of 5416 m. Crossing the pass will descend you to the Muktinath and Jomsom, finally taking you back to the Pokhara valley. 

    Trek Name

    Annapurna Circuit and Tilicho Lake Trek 

    Trek Days

    17

    Start/Finish

    Kathmandu

    Max. Elevation

    5416 m. at Thorong La Pass

    Elevation of Tilicho Lake

    4970 m. 

    Difficulty

    Strenuous

    Approx. Trekking Distance

     

    Accommodation

    Teahouse

    Average Walk Per Day

    5-7 Hours

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    About Us

    What is Annapurna Circuit and Tilicho Lake?

    Annapurna Circuit is a classic trekking trail that combines the oligotrophic Glacial Tilicho Lake. The complete trek is of 17 days that passes through some of the pristine villages, virgin forests and mountain sights in the distance. Throughout the trek, you will be walking in the most diverse Annapurna region of Nepal that is protected by the Annapurna Conservation Area Project (ACAP).

    Trekking in the Annapurna Circuit and Tilicho lake is admired by many trekkers for its amazing beauty, climatic variations and culturally enriched hospitable people. The trek encompasses the beautiful villages of Manang, Mustang and Kaski districts. 

    The Annapurna Circuit and Tilicho Lake trek is the best trekking route in the Annapurna region of Nepal. Though the trail is segmented into some areas, the connecting trail to the classic Annapurna circuit leads you to some of the other trekking areas in the Annapurna region of Nepal. 

    During the Annapurna Circuit and Tilicho Lake trek, you can witness the dual sides of the Annapurna mountains. The North and South sides are quite spectacular during the trek as you will be trekking in both parts circumambulating the mountains. 

    Why Annapurna Circuit and Tilicho Lake Trek?

    The trekking trail of the Annapurna circuit was developed in the late 20th century. During that period, it was an eccentric part of daily lifestyle, but with the growing number of trekkers, the trail took the form of the most exciting and rewarding trekking trail of northwestern Nepal. 

    While trekking in the Annapurna Circuit and Tilicho Lake, you will witness spectacular mountains such as Annapurna I, Annapurna II, Annapurna III & IV Tilicho, Nilgiri, Chulu, Manaslu, Ngadi Chuli, Gangapurna, Gandharva Chuli, Dhaulagiri, Gurja Himal, Tukucha Peak, Dhampus Peak, Thorong Peak and many other neighbouring mountains. The lush greenery and jungles along the trail combine a unique essence of wild and vivid encounters. Furthermore, the local people and their lifestyle, undoubtedly, is an amazing part of the trekking in the Annapurna region of Nepal. 

    The rewarding trekking experience in the heart of Annapurna moulded this trail as a most advanced and diverse trekking trail. The old fashioned yet nifty trails are easier to brave in contrast to the off the beaten trails as in some parts of remote Dolpo. So, if you want to experience the authenticity of cultural and natural blend in a single trek, Annapurna Circuit and Tilicho Lake trek, without a qualm, is a must explore trekking trail in Nepal and is on the bucket list of adventurers for this reason. 

    Tilicho Lake: It is an oligotrophic high altitude lake in the Manag valley of Nepal. Known for its incredibly blue water sapphire-like colour, and amusing atmosphere of higher elevations, this lake has been a continuous source of attraction in the Annapurna region of Nepal. Situated at an elevation of 4919 m above sea level, Tilicho Lake is known for its Himalayan beauty, religious merits and indescribable climatic variations. 

    The lake carries wonderful religious merit. Hindus believe that it is the same Kak Bhusundi lake mentioned in the Holy epic Ramayana. The legend has it that the sage Kak Bhusundi told Garuda the various events of Ramayana by taking the form of a crow. So, this lake is named Kak Bhusundi as Kak means crow in Sanskrit. 

    Annapurna Circuit: It is a classic trail that connects many villages of Manang, Mustang, Kaski, Lamjung and Myagdi district. During the time when the roadway was not accessible to the modern bus-jeep system, this trail was used to transport goods and livestock. But during the period of the 1970s and 1980s, the pattern changed as the surge in youthful arrival of adventure seekers increased in Nepal. And it emerged as a popular trekking trail in the Annapurna region of Nepal. 

    annapurna circuit trek

    As of now, most of the parts in the Annapurna region are explored by many trekkers and a few are connected to the existing trail making it a wonderful tourist natural adventure spot in the Annapurna area. The whole Annapurna region is overlooked by Annapurna Conservation Area Project to conserve and protect the cultural and biological ecosystem prevalent in the region.

    How to reach Annapurna Circuit and Tilicho Lake

    Trekking in the Annapurna region of Nepal is an easily accessible and doable trek in Nepal. It is easier than other high altitude trekking in Khumbu and Dolpo region, but difficult than other trekking areas in the Annapurna region. The subtropical lowlands to the arid landscapes in the higher elevations are the best attributes of the trek. 

    The Annapurna Circuit and Tilicho Lake trek begin with a drive from Kathmandu valley. A drive from Kathmandu takes you to Bhulbhule via Besisahar. The trekking begins from Bhulbhule. The trail passes through some of the beautiful villages such as Chamje, Dharapani, Chame, Pisang and Manang village. You will get a day for acclimatization in Manang. On this day you can explore the lakes and terrains in the beautiful Manang village of Nepal. 

    dharapani-annapurna

    After acclimatization in Manang, you will trek further to the Tilicho base camp. After exploring the wonderful Tilicho lake, you will trek downwards to Sri Kharka and Yak Kharka. From Yak Kharka, a steep hike will take you to the Thorong Phedi where you will cross the Thorong la Pass reaching the amazing Muktinath temple. Hiking down, you will reach Jomsom from where you will get a flight back to the Pokhara valley.

    Related Article: Annapurna Inner Circuit Trek

    Permits to reach Annapurna Circuit and Tilicho lake

    Permit

    Cost (For Foreigners)

    Cost (For Indian)

    TIMS

    USD 20

    NPR 1000

    ACAP

    USD 30

    NPR 1000

    Annapurna Circuit and Tilicho Lake Trek Difficulty

    There are a lot of things to explore in Nepal. From the incredibly satisfying lakes and rivers to the jaw-dropping mountains in the extreme elevations, everything is worthwhile but memories last a lifetime. Annapurna Circuit and Tilicho Lake Trek is a moderately difficult trek in the Annapurna region of Nepal. 

    Acute Mountain Sickness

    While trekking in the higher elevations of Nepal, you are prone to acute mountain sickness. Some people experience Altitude Sickness in areas above 3500 m. The difficult terrains and decreasing oxygen in the atmosphere with higher elevations make it difficult to adapt to the changing climate. So, Altitude Sickness makes it difficult to trek for some people. But with some precautions and measures, the risk of altitude sickness can be mitigated.

    Some measures to lower the risk of altitude sickness are:- 

    • Acclimatization is a must. Gaining significant elevations without rest and acclimatization can be fatal. 
    • During the trek, it is normal to feel drained. Staying hydrated and getting energizers can help reduce the feeling of dizziness and the risk of Altitude Sickness. 
    • Before planning the trek, it is important that you work on your fitness so that it will be easier for you to sustain the tiredness and difficulty in the mountains. 
    • Eat a healthy meal and get enough water throughout the trek. Staying hydrated can help reduce the risk of altitude sickness. 
    • If you are getting the symptoms of AMS, try losing some altitude to the lower elevations. 
    • If you are experiencing severe symptoms of AMS, consider getting heli evacuation. 
    • The mild symptoms should go by using medicines such as Diamox. 

    Inclement Weather

    Inclement weather is another major factor that causes difficulty trekking. It is also the major factor that is worth considering while visiting the Annapurna Circuit and Tilicho Lake. While trekking in the higher elevations, you should always be prepared for the worst so that you don’t have to suffer in the uncertainties. Some measures you can take to avoid inclement weather are:- 

    • Always plan according to the seasonal favorability.
    • Forecast the weather before planning the trek. 
    • Get the contact details of local authorities, police and tourist assistance agencies before venturing the trek. 
    • In case of emergency, consider getting a rescue. 

    Physical Pain and Problems

    While trekking in the mountains, the common problem many hikers face is knee and foot pain, and fatigue. Trekking requires rigorous walking of more than four hours each day. And while doing so, it is quite common to experience physical pain and fatigue. To lower the risk of it, trekkers can take a few precautions. 

    • Make your backpack lightweight, a heavy backpack is the main cause of pain in ligaments and sore feet. 
    • Always use shoes that fit your feet. Good shoes are a must in strenuous trekking. 
    • Hydrotherapy can help cure sore feet during the trek. Cleaning your feet with lukewarm water has a good effect and has proven to be beneficial during trekking.
    • Don’t push yourself to exertion. Mental and physical stress is the main reason for fatigue. So, intrinsic motivation is good, but over pushing yourself to extra limits, it may not be a good idea. 
    • Always have enough food that is good for your body. Stay hydrated and energized during the trek. 
    • Do breathing exercises regularly. 
    • Do not smoke and drink while trekking in the mountains. Breathing shortness and tiredness is mostly due to smoking habits. Instead, work on your stamina and develop habits that are good for your physical and mental health. 

    Best Time to Visit Annapurna Circuit and Tilicho Lake

    The exquisite beauty of Annapurna is best explored in Annapurna Circuit and the Tilicho Lake trek. While the best time to visit the mountains can be a matter of contradiction, there are still some ways that define the favorability in terms of visibility, trail conditions, climate and geographical change. Most part of the trekking in the Annapurna region, especially in the higher elevations, are arid because of its trans-Himalayan attributes. 

    For trekking in the Annapurna region, every month is favourable as this area observes low rainfall in the monsoon and also the climate stays quite pleasant throughout the year.   

    The January month begins with some snowfall around the valleys in the higher elevations. This time is not quite favourable, but you can visit lower areas to enjoy the beauty of snowy mountains. The weather remains quite frosty, however, if you want to explore some places around Muktinath and Jomsom, January is still a good time. For the complete trekking to Tilicho Lake and the Annapurna region, January is not a good time as there are chances of heavy snowfall and you might lose your trail while trekking. 

    February and March months are still winter in Nepal. During these months, trekking is possible but due to the frosty climate and poor visibility, it might not be rewarding as much. So, if you are planning to trek in winter, it is better to avoid it. However, trekking can be quite cost-efficient as these months are off-season in Nepal and you might get cheaper trekking supplies including accommodation in the mountain area. 

    Trekking in Nepal begins rigorously in late April. Late April, May, and Early June are spring in Nepal. These months are a good time for trekking. The clear visibility, moderate temperature and humidity, good trekking trails, lush greenery around and pleasant atmosphere makes the trekking a wonderful experience. So, if you want to explore the authenticity of flora and fauna throughout the way alongside the mountain vistas, Spring is an amazing season for trekking in Nepal. 

    annapurna-trek

    Early June, July, and August months are monsoons in Nepal. Since the Mustang region lies in the trans-Himalayan zone, the higher elevations of this trek are mostly arid. So, there are fewer chances of rainfall. But a light rainfall can be expected during the trek. Trekking in other areas than Annapurna Circuit can be demanding due to the monsoon climate but in the Annapurna area, the chances of heavy rainfall during monsoon are less, thus favourable for trekking. 

    The Autumn months such as September, October and November are the best time for trekking in the mountains of Nepal. There are many things that you can experience during this time of the year. The clear visibility, moderate temperature and pleasant climate make it the best time to trek in Nepal. Many people venture the trek in Autumn in the mountains of Nepal. The dry climate, clear sky, spectacular mountain views and incredible scenery are the best parts of trekking in these months. It is also an excellent time to explore a diverse range of flora and fauna in the mountains. 

    Late November onwards, and December observes fewer trekkers in Nepal. This is the off time for trekking as the winter begins. But if you want to hike in the outskirts of Kathmandu and Pokhara valley to experience the snowfall, these months are the best time. Short hikes and trekkings are quite pleasant in the winter. It may be a good idea to avoid longer treks during the winter season.

    Annapurna Circuit Weather Chart

    Months

    Av. Min. Temp. (° C)

    Av. Max. Temp. (° C)

    Av. Rainfall (mm)

    January

    -11

    1

    9

    February

    -13

    0

    14

    March

    -8

    4

    9

    April

    4

    8

    8

    May

    0

    14

    13

    June

    3

    18

    39

    July

    7

    19

    123

    August

    7

    19

    136

    September

    4

    17

    62

    October

    -1

    11

    6

    November

    -5

    6

    0

    December

    -8

    4

    5

    Classic Annapurna Circuit and Tilicho Lake Trek Itinerary

    The Annapurna Circuit and Tilicho Lake trek is a 17 days trek in the Annapurna region of Nepal.  The trekking is diverse and rewarding in terms of the mountain vistas you see, the culture you explore and the geography you pass through.

    Related Trip: Annapurna Circuit Yoga Trek

    Day 01: Kathmandu Arrival [1350 m/4430 ft]

    This is the day you will be arriving in Kathmandu for your Annapurna Circuit and Tilicho Lake Trek. Upon your arrival, a representative from our company will meet you at the airport and transfer you to the hotel. You will get every information you require about your trekking in the Annapurna region of Nepal. Plus, we’ll assist you to process the needy permits and other arrangements. 

    If you have questions or anything that comes up in your mind regarding the trekking activity, this is the day you ask without any hesitation. The trek preparation will be completed on this day and you will be all set to attend the mountain calls. 

    Day 02: Drive to Bhulbhule via Besisahar [840 m/2755 ft]

    The Annapurna Circuit and Tilicho Lake trek starts with a drive from Kathmandu to Besisahar and finally taking you to the beautiful village of Bhulbhule. It takes about 6-7 hours of drive to Besisahar and more or less two hours to reach Bhulbhule from there. This day you will be driving all the way to this beautiful village. 

    Throughout the road, you can explore the beautiful scenery and lush green jungle right after leaving the Kathmandu valley. The stunning mountain vistas and the roaring Trishuli river are astounding to see. In the northern central part of Nepal, Bhulbhule village is a remarkable place that offers unique cultural and biological values. The Gurungs, Tamangs, Chhetris and Brahmins are the primary inhabitants of this place, however, you can witness a mix of diverse cultures in the beautiful mountain terrains of Bhulbhule village. 

    Bhulbhule

    Bhulbhule is the trek starting point from where you will be beginning to trek to Tilicho Lake. This place is popular among trekkers and many nature explorers. The beautiful mountain vistas seen in the Besisahar and Bhulbhule drive is very captivating sight to explore. Also, you will be welcomed by the most hospitable people in the area. This day, you will spend your remaining time in Bhulbhule to explore the local culture and mind-blowing natural beauty.

    Day 03: Trek to Chamje [1430 m/4692 ft]

    With a beautiful sunrise in the Bhulbhule, you will prepare for trekking in the Annapurna region. After breakfast at the lodge in Bhulbhule, you will trek towards Chamje. The trail passes through some of the beautiful villages such as Bahun Danda and a few more. It takes about 5-6 hours of trekking to reach Chamje from Bhulbhule. 

    Throughout the trail, you can witness the majestic Annapurna panorama and other neighbouring mountains. The beautiful waterfalls, roaring Marshyangdi river and lush greenery around make the trail very exciting. The incredible display of nature, mind-blowing mountain settlements and vistas along the hospital with people from diverse ethnicities are the major attractions of the day. 

    There are many things to explore in the surrounding places. The cliffs and farmlands, terraced farming style and lifestyle of people and their daily chores are fascinating to explore. 

    After a tiresome, but incredible trekking day, you will be residing in the beautiful Chamje village. The trekking is not so difficult as you will be reaching at an elevation of 1400 m only. So, it won’t be difficult for you to adapt to moderate altitude.

    Day 04: Trek to Dharapani [1860 m/6102 ft]

    After early breakfast in the morning, you will begin your trek to the beautiful Dharapani village. This village is situated at an elevation of 1860 m and offers incredible mountain sceneries, the lifestyle of local people and wonderful geography. 

    Passing through the beautiful villages such as Bagarchhap and Danagyu and exploring the amazing nature throughout the trail, you will reach Dharapani. Along the trail, you can explore a few waterfalls, lush green jungles and mountain cliffs and panoramas. The picturesque beauty of some of the mountain peaks of the Annapurna range can be witnessed from the trail. 

    With the blooming Rhododendrons, and some uphill and some flat trails, you will reach the beautiful Dharapani. You will explore the mountain scenery in the evening, and you can talk to the locals if that’s what you prefer.

    Day 05: Trek to Chame [2650 m/8695 ft]

    This day, you will be exploring the majestic mountains, mind-blowing sceneries and incredible natural beauty. After breakfast at the teahouse, you will trek towards the beautiful Chame village. This village is situated at an elevation of 2650 m. Though the elevation is significantly higher than previous days, it’s not that difficult to complete. 

    Trekking from Dharapani to Chame requires uphill and flat walks in the forested area. The dense forest and flora and fauna can be explored while passing through the trail. The trail passes through some of the popular villages such as Bagarchhap, Danakyu, Timang, Thanchok, Koto village and more. The beauty of passing through different villages is that you get to explore the diversity and cultural variations in the different places. One of the major attractions of the Annapurna Circuit Trek is the diversity of culture that has a significant contrast in the higher elevations with the slow pace. 

    chame

    The total trek distance is about 17 km and takes about 5-6 hours of continuous trekking. This day is a little difficult as you have to climb uphill in some places however, this is a very rewarding day in terms of the experiences you get.

    Day 06: Trek to Pisang [3250 m/10662 ft]

    You will begin the trek by crossing the Marsyangdi bridge. The beautiful forests of pine and tsuga alongside the incredible mountain vistas are the major attraction of the day. After continuous walking from Pisang, you will reach Bhartang. From Bhartang, there’s a significant uphill walk at the end of which lies the Dhukur Pokhari. From here you can witness the beautiful Paungda Danda rock face. 

    Annapurna II is spectacular in this area. Trekking ahead,  you will reach lower and upper Pisang. 

    Pisang is a popular stopover in Annapurna Circuit and the Tilicho lake trek. This place is popular for the mind-blowing sceneries, cultural artefacts and wonderful Himalayan panorama stretched in the mountain valleys. It takes about 3-4 hours of trekking from Chame to reach Pisang.

    Day 07: Trek to Manang [3540 m/11614 ft]

    As the first ray of sun hits the mountains, you can see the spectacular beauty of the Himalayas from Pisang.  After breakfast at the teahouse, you will be heading towards the incredible Manang valley. Manang is popular for its amazing cultural values, mountain vistas and astounding geographical variations that are particularly observed in this area. 

    Trekking from the Pisang village, it will take about 4 hours to reach Barga village where lies a 900 years old monastery. This is a spiritual hub in the Manang valley. An hour walks ahead of Barga, lies the beautiful village of Manang where you can explore the authentic culture and traditions of local people, arid landscapes accompanied by majestic mountain panorama. 

    manang nepal

    Manang is the stopover of the day. There are many things to explore in this area. And it is also a stopover for acclimatization that lets you prepare for the higher elevations you will be getting into.

    Day 08: Acclimatization in Manang [3540 m/11614 ft]

    This is the acclimatization day in Manang. You will do some acclimatization hikes in the nearby areas and explore the authenticity of the place. There are various things you can explore here. For acclimatization hikes, you can visit the vantage points or just trek to the near Lake. 

    Basically, you will be exploring the beautiful Manang village today. You can spend time with the locals and try the local dish or visit the viewpoints in the hills. You will stay in Manang this day too for acclimatization.

    Day 09: Trek to Tilicho Base Camp [4919 m/16138 ft]

    Finally comes the glorious day to witness the incredible Tilicho Lake. Early in the morning, after breakfast at the teahouse, you will be heading towards the Tilicho Base Camp at an elevation of 4919 m. 

    Today, you will stay in Tilicho base camp from where you can farsightedly see the spectacular mountains and glacial lakes.

    Day 10: Hike to Tilicho Lake and Trek Back to Sri Kharka [4080 m/13385 ft]

    Early in the morning, after breakfast, you will trek to Tilicho. Tilicho Lake is near Tilicho Base Camp. 

    Trekking to Tilicho Lake is one of the most magnificent adventures of the classic Annapurna Circuit and Tilicho Lake trek. It is the major highlight of the trek. After witnessing the incredible lake, you will trek downwards to Sri Kharka, losing the significant elevation. The returning trail follows Yak Khara the next day. 

    Tilicho nepal

    You will stay overnight in Sri Kharka. Here you can explore the arid landscapes and beautiful mountain vistas. 

    Day 11: Trek to Yak Kharka [4050 m/13288 ft]

    From Sri Kharka, you will trek to Yak Kharka. You will follow the trail to Khangsar village above Sri Kharka passing through some old ruins of the monasteries and old Khangsar. You will reach Yak Kharka after crossing the old log bridge between Gumsang and Yak Kharka before reaching this place. 

    Yak kharka

    It takes about 5 hours of trekking to reach Yak Kharka from Sri Kharka. This place is incredible as you can explore the arid beauty amidst the mountains and witness the villages in some places. There are several teahouses that offer accommodation facilities in Yak Kharka. 

    The following day, you will be trekking in the Thorong area which is revered for its high altitude mountain pass in the Annapurna area.

    Day 12: Trek to Thorong Phedi [4525 m/14845 ft]

    After Yak Phedi, you will be trekking to the Thorong Phedi which will lead you towards the legendary Thorong La Pass. This day you will be trekking uphill for about 4-5 hours to reach Phedi at an elevation of 4525 m.

    Along the way, you can witness the spectacular views of some mountains such as Mt. Gudang, Mt. Syagang, Thorung Peak, and Mt. Khatungkan. The beautiful landscapes and sceneries are also the major attractions of the day.

    Day 13: Trek to Muktinath via Thorong Phedi [3760 m/12335 ft]

    This is the day you will be crossing the major pass in the Annapurna region of Nepal. The Thorong La Pass is famous for its wonderful arid atmosphere, high elevation attributes and beautiful mountains are seen from the top. To complete the challenging Thorong La Pass, you will wake up early in the morning at about 3:00 Am and prepare for the trek. The majestic mountain panorama stretched in the northern side towards Tibet and the very religious and spiritual surrounding of Muktinath while descending down will make it totally worth it. 

    thorong la pass

    The stopover of the day is Muktinath. It is one of the most popular Hindu and Buddhist temples in Nepal. The spiritual epitome of this incredible is also the major place to explore this day. This day, you will need to trek a little longer than others as you will be crossing the Thorong La Pass and descending down is also a little difficult while reaching the Muktinath area.

    Day 14: Trek to Jomsom [2720 m/8924 ft]

    Trekking to the Jomsom provides a mind-blowing view of the arid valley, beautiful apple trees and unique Thakali culture at some places. It takes about 4-5 hours of trekking to reach Jomsom to Muktinath. 

    Though there are transportation facilities available to reach Jomsom from Muktinath, exploring local villages while trekking in this area provides an amazing part of this place to explore. 

    Jomsom is a popular place in the Mustang region of Nepal. It is famous for its beautiful village settlement, airport and arid views spectacularly seen from the different places. You will stay at Jomsom for the upcoming returning day.

    Day 15: Drive/Fly to Pokhara [810 m/2657 ft]

    Finally,  this day formally ends the trekking adventure. Early in the morning, looking after the flight time, you will be escorted to the Airport in Jomsom. From Jomsom, a short quick flight will take you back to the Pokhara valley. 

    If the flight option this day is not accessible due to inclement weather, you will be transported via a drive to the Pokhara valley. It takes about 5-6 hours to drive to reach Pokhara via Jeep from Jomsom.

    Day 16: Drive to Kathmandu [1350 m/4429 ft]

    Pokhara is a beautiful place in western Nepal. After exploring the nightlife a day ahead, you will have a returning drive to the capital- Kathmandu. It takes about 4-5 hours to drive to Kathmandu from Pokhara. 

    The flight option is also accessible from Pokhara to Kathmandu if you want to get a quick flight to the capital. But the drive option is rewarding as you get to explore the diverse landscapes, rivers and hills throughout the way during the drive. 

    Kathmandu

    Upon reaching Kathmandu, you can explore the Thamel area for nightlife in Kathmandu. This day is officially the end day of Annapurna Circuit and Tilicho Lake Trek. A representative from our company will come to visit you.

    Day 17: Departure

    Looking after your departing time, we’ll transfer you to the Airport for boarding. This day, after collecting a lot of incredible memories in the mountains of Nepal, you will be returning to your next destination. 

    10 Days Annapurna Circuit Trek Itinerary

    In this trek, the former trek to Annapurna Circuit and Tilicho Lake is shortened. On the first day, you will be directly driving to Dharapani skipping trekking in some villages such as Bhulbhule and Chamje. You will directly begin your trekking from Dharapani to Koto and Upper Pisang.

    From Upper Pisang, you will be trekking to Manang village where you will acclimatize and spend two days. The incredible culture and arid valleys are the major things to explore in Manang village. From Manang, you will trek towards Yak Kharka, trailing in the classic Annapurna Circuit Trail to reach Thorong High Camp at 4925 m. From Thorong High Camp, you will cross Thorong La Pass. 

    After crossing the incredible Thorong La pass, you will descend down to the Muktinath and Jomsom. From Jomsom, you will catch an early flight and return to Pokhara valley. A daytime flight from Pokhara valley will take you back to Kathmandu. 

    This trek concludes your Annapurna Circuit Trek. It is shortened to make your trip efficient and effective and allows you to explore the most admired Annapurna Circuit Trek in the Annapurna region of Nepal. 

    The brief itinerary of the short Annapurna Circuit Trek is mentioned here. 

    Day 01: Drive to Dharapani [1860 m/6103 ft]

    A drive from Kathmandu will take you to the beautiful Dharapani villages. Passing through the different villages and scenic jungle throughout the way is the best part of the drive to Dharapani. It takes about 7 hours to reach Darapani from Kathmandu. The stopover of the day is at a guest house in Dharapani.

    Day 02: Trek from Dharapani to Koto [2600 m/8530 ft]

    This day, you will begin trekking from Dharapni to Koto. The beautiful waterfalls, small villages, terraced farmlands and the spectacular Himalayas seen during the trail are fascinating parts of the day. You can witness the spectacular Annapurna mountains and explore the local authentic culture during the trek. 

    Day 03: Trek from Koto to Upper Pisang [3300 m/10827 ft]

    The trekking from Koto to Upper Pisang is the most spectacular one. You can witness various mountains, cliffs, villages and beautiful jungle. In the upper parts, the arid geography starts which is also a wonderful sight to see. It takes about 6 hours of trek to reach there. 

    Day 04: Trek from Upper Pisang to Manang [3540 m/11614 ft]

    Trekking in the arid meadows and exploring the beautiful dry land while heading towards one of the most astonishing villages of Nepal, Manang, is the best part of the day. The beautiful mountains, spectacular Himalayas and arid valleys seen from the trail make the experience overwhelming. It takes about 6 hours to reach Manang from Upper Pisang. You will be staying at Manang this day.

    Day 05: Acclimatization in Manang [3540 m/11614 ft]

    This is the acclimatization day. Explore the local culture, traditions and lifestyle that is so different from other parts of the trail. Acclimatization walk to the outskirts, nearby lakes and vantage points reward you with the best experience that this Manang village has to offer. 

    Day 06: Trek from Manang to Yak Kharka [4050 m/13287 ft]

    After spending two nights in the beautiful Manang village, you will trek toward Yak Kharka. Trekking trail slowly ascends to Yak Kharka and the trail passes through arid trails, beautiful valleys and villages. The semi alpine climate here is very attractive and so unique than other parts of the trail. 

    Day 07: Trek to Thorong High Camp [4925 m/16158 ft]

    This day is strenuous in terms of elevation gain. However, this day will reward you with the mindblowing atmosphere in the upper elevations of Nepal. Reaching the iconic Thorang High Camp is the major aim of the day. However, you can witness the beautiful mountain panoramas and high mountain settlements during the trek. 

    Day 08: Trek from High Camp to Muktinath [3760 m/12335 ft]

    You will begin trekking early in the morning from Thorong High Camp. This day, you will cross the challenging but wonderful Thorong La Pass. The beginning is difficult but as you descend towards Muktinath, the trail is downwards and offers spectacular views of the mountain valleys and Himalayas. 

    Day 09: Trek from Muktinath to Jomsom [2720 m/8923 ft]

    You can explore the holy abode Muktinath temple early morning and descend towards the Jomsom. Jomsom is a popular spot in the mustang region of Nepal. This place is wonderful as you can explore a diverse ethnicity, culture, mountains, beautiful terrains and captivating sight of the mountain lifestyle. 

    Day 10: Fly from Jomsom to Pokhara, Fly to Kathmandu [1350 m/4430 ft]

    You will catch an early flight from Jomsom to reach Pokhara and a daytime flight from Pokhara will take you back to the Kathmandu valley.

    Related Article: Short Annapurna Circuit Trek

    Accommodation During Annapurna Circuit and Tilicho Lake Trek

    Annapurna Circuit and Tilicho Lake trek is a classic, adventurous and cultural trek that offers a splendid experience in the integrated cultural and biophysical atmosphere. The whole trek is a popular trekking route. So, there won’t be any difficulty finding accommodation facilities and other services. This trek became a part of lifestyle a long time ago, so, today, this trail holds an authentic value that is rooted in the living standard of locals. 

    Some of the types of accommodation facilities that you can get during the Annapurna Circuit and Tilicho Lake trek are provided here. 

    Camp: Camping can be adventurous if you are travelling in remote areas of Nepal. But Annapurna region is filled with small scattered communities in a wide area. So, to camp is possible but you can get teahouses and lodges throughout the trek in the Annapurna region. 

    Teahouse: Teahouses are the most popular accommodation in the trekking regions of Nepal. These are comparatively cheaper than lodges and come very efficiently and handy while trekking in the mountains. The teahouse accommodation culture is intricately associated with the mountain adventure, thus, teahouses are unique in terms of the experiences you gather in locally run facilities. The cost of a teahouse per night varies between $2 to $5 and meals are also cheaper. 

    Lodges: Lodges are more advanced than teahouses. These are the mid-range accommodation facilities that you may get in the remote mountains. In the Annapurna region, teahouses are available throughout the trek but lodges are available in some developed areas only. So, it is not always viable to find a good lodge in the mountains. But if you are a bit luxury centric, then the luxury you find in the mountains is in lodges rather than teahouses. The food options are more than Teahouses. So, you may get to eat the food of your choice in the teahouse. The cost of a lodge varies between $15 to $50 per night.

    Food and Health Safety

    Trekking in the mountains has its own perks and cons. While it is an incredible way to explore the mountain panoramas, if health is not taken into serious consideration, trekking in the mountain areas can be fatal. Therefore, trekkers need to identify the risks associated with trekking in an alien land before venturing into the mountain adventure. 

    Some of the major things that you may need to take into consideration are as follows:- 

    • It’s essential to stay hydrated and energized throughout the trek. Don’t push yourself to the extreme. Exertion can be fatal in the mountains.
    • Make a good itinerary and plan everything beforehand. Food and beverages, length of stay, stopovers, hiking partners and everything associated with trekking need to be planned before trekking in the Himalayas. 
    • Carry dry fruits, cereals, bottled water and other foods that you will need during the trek. 
    • Carry first aid kits. You may need it in case of an emergency. 

    Amenities during the trek

    Annapurna Circuit Tilicho Lake trek is one of the popular and well-established trekking trails in the Annapurna region of Nepal. Camping is not an option for accommodation because at every stopover you can find teahouses and lodges. So, it is well accessible in terms of accommodation, trekking trail and other services you get during the trek. 

    Porter: Porter is important if you are trekking in the mountains of Nepal for a longer time. You can get porters to carry your duffel bags and other backpacks during the trek. Porters charge around $20 to $40 per day. 

    Pony: In some places, you can get a pony to carry your goods and bags. In the remote mountains of Nepal, the local people carry goods with the help of Pony to maintain their lifestyle. 

    Electricity: Electricity is available in most parts of the Annapurna region. So, you won’t have difficulty charging your batteries and other resources. In some places in the higher elevations, the solar facility is there. 

    Mobile Network and Internet: Mobile networks and the internet are available in most parts of the Annapurna region. However, in higher elevations, the internet and mobile network may not be accessible. 

    Water Facilities: You can get water throughout the trek. In the teahouses, a water facility is available. But you may have to pay some sum to use hot water for shower purposes. 

    Insurance and Rescue

    Getting to the higher elevation poses a sort of risk that is highly influenced by altitude sickness, geographical variations, mountain terrains and health hazards. So, it is important to obtain insurance. Insurance helps in the evacuation process and also the financial burden is also mitigated. 

    The heli evacuation service is provided by insurance companies. Rescue is important in case of emergency. So, in the higher mountains, having a contingency plan in case of uncertainty can be life-saving. 

    If you are planning to trek in the Annapurna Circuit and Tilicho lake area, it is better to be insured by a reliable and trustworthy insurance company. Always have an insurance plan before trekking in the mountain areas where the risks and hazards associated with life exist.

    Trekking Gears Essentials

    Trekking gears are important if you are planning a trek in the mountains. It becomes more essential if you want to trek in the higher elevations. To be safe and sound, you need to have good gear to protect yourself from inclement weather and hazardous terrains. 

    backpack trekking

    We’ve prepared a list of Trekking Gears Essentials for the trekkers who want to trek in the mountains of Nepal. Please check our Nepal Trekking Gear Essentials and consider making a backpack accordingly. The list indicates the major things that you may need while trekking in the mountains. 

    Trekking Tips

    •  If you are planning to trek in the Annapurna region, plan your trek ahead of time. Start doing exercises regularly and it is recommendable that you do breathing exercises. It surely helps to cope with high altitude sickness. 
    • It is not a good idea to avoid acclimatization during the trek. Acclimatization helps you cope with the changing altitude and prepare you to adapt to the high altitude climate. It is also an excellent way to develop endurance and understand the local culture and traditions alongside the wonderful things that a particular place has to offer. 
    • Carry a light backpack and include essential things that you will need during the trek. A light backpack means less burden and less physical weight. 
    • Get a guide and porter for your trek. A guide can help you with many things including showing the trail, making you understand about different places and looking after you in case of uncertainties. 
    • Always eat healthy food. Stay hydrated and have enough healthy supplies to eat during the trek. 
    • Don’t be too tight while planning the trek. Bring extra money. It is always a good idea to have a contingency plan and extra money in case of emergency and extra expenditures. 
    • If you have any health conditions, consult with your doctor first. If it’s okay with getting in the high altitude with the condition you have, then be precautious and get medications that you might need while trekking in the mountains. 
    • Don’t push yourself to exertion. 
    • Respect the local culture and traditions. People expect you to be wise and respectful to their culture and community. So, in an alien land, it is important that you value the local sentiments. 
    • Don’t smoke and drink while trekking. Smoking is itself not a good habit. Plus, if you are getting in the higher elevations, smoking can reduce your stamina and make you feel dizzy. 
    • And, Do not LITTER. 

    Frequently Asked Questions

    • What can we do in Annapurna Circuit and Tilicho Lake trek?

      Annapurna Circuit and the Tilicho Lake trek are full of wonders. You can explore the lush greeneries, arid valleys, culture and traditions, artefacts, monasteries, lakes and cliffs, and the incredible mountain panorama during the trek. 

    • How difficult is the Tilicho Lake trek?

      Tilicho Lake trek is a moderately difficult trek in the Annapurna region of Nepal. The maximum elevation you will be getting into is at Thorong La Pass at 5416 m. This trek is not as difficult as other remote trekking areas in Dolpo. However, it requires a remarkable elevation gain each day and 5-6 hours of average walking, it is quite an adventurous trek. 

    • Can you swim in Tilicho Lake?

      Swimming might not be a good idea to do in the freezing climate of higher elevations. The frosty climate and unpredictable weather of high altitude can make the situation worse. SO, swimming in Tilicho Lake is not a recommended activity to do. 

    • Is Annapurna Circuit still worth it?

      Though it was developed in the time of hardships to maintain the daily lifestyle, this classical trek is still the most admirable and rewarding trek in the Annapurna region. Yes, some parts of the trails are fragmented into small trekking areas, but trekking in the Annapurna Circuit is still worth it. Worthier than ever before due to the accessibility and mind-blowing experiences it has to offer. 

    • Which is harder: Everest Base Camp or Annapurna Circuit?

      Everest Base Camp and Annapurna Circuit both are classic trekking trails with their own unique history, geography and climate. Trekking in the Everest region has a unique geography that has significantly difficult terrains and higher elevations. But Annapurna Circuit is comparatively easier as it has more accessible routes and trails and diverse villages to explore. 

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