Nepal, a highly diverse country rich in beautiful destinations and multitudinous gift of nature, is a dream of any trekking and mountain lovers. While most of the tourist destinations of Nepal get busy during the peak seasons, it’s always a good idea to travel to the places that are less explored if you love solitude and want to have more relaxed holidays. There are numerous unique trekking destinations in Nepal that are quieter, yet equally beautiful. Manaslu region is one of them.
Tucked away from civilization, Manaslu region, the home of Mt. Manaslu (8163 m) – the eighth highest mountain in the world, is extremely beautiful snuggled amid snowcapped mountains where you can find beautiful landscapes and feel at home with the typical culture of Tsum and Nubri people. Trekking in Manaslu region takes you through the diverse and impressive sceneries, snowcapped mountains, pristine glacier lakes and rich flora and faunas. Starting right from the green paddy fields and subtropical forests, the trail slowly meanders through higher landscape to reach mountain passes and arid cliffs surrounded by breathtaking views of Mt. Manaslu (8163 m), Mt. Himlung (7126 m), Mt. Kanguru (6981 m), Mt. Annapurna South (7937 m), Himlung Himal (7126 m) and Cheo Himal (6820 m). Not just nature, you can also get insightful cultural experiences that include Tibetan Buddhist traditions, exquisite Buddhist art, monasteries and festivals of different ethnic groups.
Manaslu Circuit Trek is one of the popular treks in this region. This trek encircles Mt. Manaslu. The trek normally begins through the rugged path across the hilltop of Dhading towards the green terraces, lush hillsides and heads up to Budi Gandaki Valley. The trail passes through several small villages, widened valleys, terraced cultivated fields, steamy lowlands, and amazing waterfalls. At Lokpa, you also have the option to go towards Tsum Valley, one of the remotest Himalayan Valleys. The Valley is especially known for its rugged inner terrain and authentic trans-Himalayan culture. Some travelers combine this trek with Manaslu Circuit trek. After completing Tsum Valley trek, they join the Manaslu main trail again, from where the path descends down across the wide sandy river bed and go after steep, craggy valley side and eventually crosses the Tharo khola to reach the beautiful settlement at Namrung. Furthermore, you pass through lovely monasteries, beautiful chortens, manis and get the opportunity to enjoy the stunning landscapes of many mountains such as Himlung Himal (7126 m), Cheo Himal (6820 m) and Annapurna II (7937 m) as soon as you reach Samagaon. The trail then circumvents gigantic Manaslu peak (8163m) and crosses Larkya-La pass at 5106m which follows the narrow path that finally emerges into Marshyangdi Valley along the main trail of Annapurna circuit. The trek traces towards Tilche along the pasture of Sangure Kharka through rhododendron, oak and pine forest and finally concludes at Jagat. So, trekking in Manaslu region is a complete Himalayan adventure that offers not just a regular trekking but also a life changing experience infused with diverse natural and cultural insights.
A training on Homestay and Small Lodge Management has been organized by SNV as part of its ‘High Impact Tourism and Training Programme’(HITT). HATT(Himalayan Academy of travel & Tourism) is the logistic organizer of the programme. The training which began on 19th July is held at Kakani. Training is being imparted to locals from Manaslu, Kakani, Gorkha, Khotang and Nuwakot, who run homestays or small lodges. The objective of the training is to give enterprising locals from these areas the know-how of operating and managing homestays for tourists. Training the locals on Homestay Management will help in developing these areas as tourist destinations where comfortable and basic accommodation and other services will be offered to tourists visiting these areas. A total of 31 participants (26 from Manaslu Area) are receiving training from experts.
A group of six adventurous Danish people decided to explore Manaslu this March and Explore Himalaya helped in organizing this trip for them from 26 March to 20 April 2012. Here is what our Danish Tour Leader Mr Hans Hjordt Hansen had to say after completion of their exhilarating trip “The trek guide Mr Nima Tamang was perfect so was the cook who served us very fine meals, the camping services were also ok, only the last three days of the trek had to be revised due to the road construction”
Ole Andersen and Ingrid Sorensen from Kipling Travels made a recce trip to Manaslu this Spring(February, 2012). Although they planned to complete the Manaslu circuit, they had to make a detour to Tsum Valley because of bad weather and heavy snowfall. Here are some of the amazing pictures from their trek. The trek Sirdar was Nima Tamang.
A village in Gorkha
About to take the trail upstream Macha Khola(river)
The trail up the river
'Laligurans' or Red Rhododendron blooms- Nepal's National Flower
Gray Langur found in Nepal's hills & mountains
Little lamas at Nyingmapa Monastery
A cultural programme in Sama Gaon
A family recieves the blessing from a village elder
Manaslu Festival was inaugurated yesterday in Gorkha district by the Minister of Tourism & Civil Aviation, Mr. Khadga Bahadur Bishwakarma. Organized by the Nubri Culture and Youth Promotion Committee , the three-day festival will showcase the culture and heritage of the region through various cultural programs, horse races, archery competition etc. The organizers are expecting more than 2,000 domestic and foreign tourists to visit the event.
Itinerary was good, having enough flexibility to accommodate illness and to suit individual needs. Keep up the good work!