Only recently-opened to trekkers, the area of Nar and Phu valley, close to the Tibet border, is the main destination of Nar Phu with Annapurna Circuit trek.
Nar-Phu situated in the high remote region towards the east of Mustang is a region wild and largely uninhabited. The Tibetan-style villages along the valley and ancient fortresses built on the rock will surely fascinate you no end. You can find some of the oldest Buddhist Monastery in this region along with dramatic Himalayan ranges including Annapurna, Gangapurna and Dhaulagiri ranges. The trek crosses two passes, Kangla Pass (5322m) and Thorongla Pass (5416m).
The Nar Phu Trek combines high peaks and passes, glaciers, remote villages, narrow canyons, lovely forests, amazing rock formations, yaks, gompas and unique Himalayan cultures. Trails are rugged and at times cut high into side of the cliff. Phu is a beautiful medieval village where you can witness the real lifestyles of the Bhote communities and enjoy the fabulous and typical landscape of the valley. This trekking trail is best for those who wish to trek in a less crowded part of the Annapurna region.
Nar Phu valley is a protected area and special trekking permit is required by all trekkers. The best time to trek is in April, May, October and November.
After early morning breakfast, our guide will pick you up from the hotel and take you to the bus station. Drive from Kathmandu to Bhulbhule via Besisahar, takes about eight hours. During the drive you will follow Trisuli and Marshyangdi Rivers passing through several villages and you will enjoy views of green hills and snowcapped mountains. From Kathmandu to Besisahar is paved road and from there to Bhulbule is graveled. Stay overnight at lodge.
Ahead the Marshyangdi valley forms a steep V-shape. Follow the winding mountain path down to Syange (1100m) and then climb steeply through sheer cliff-face some 200-300m above the riverbed. From here it is a few ups and downs before you reach Chamje. Stay overnight at lodge.
The first part of the trail descends to the Marshyangdi river at which point cross a suspension bridge and make a steep climb to Sattale (1550m). From here descend to a grassy riverbank that leads to the village of Tal (1700m) where you will find hotels and teahouses. Beyond Tal, the valley narrows and the path follows winding cliffs. You will pass through the small village of Karte (1900m.) and cross a suspension bridge as you approach the Mani entrance to Dharapani (1960m.). Stay overnight at lodge.
You trek gradual ascent path and cross a stream to reach Koto. The mountain views you can enjoy are of Annapurna II, Manaslu range and beautiful views of forests on the way add another dimension to your trek. Koto is a small village mainly inhabited by Gurung and others. Their life style is mainly influenced by Buddhist Tibetans. Stay overnight in camp or lodge.
You cross the river leading to the Nar Phu valleys and hike up through beautiful woods above the Phu Khola. The route takes you through some beautiful woods and past several small caves, and a pilgrims’ Dharmashala. After you emerge out of a narrow canyon, the trail actually passes under a wide waterfall just before the Dharmashala, from where the woods become thinner and the vistas wider. Stay overnight in camp or lodge.
A steep climb up the valley along a small, scenic river brings you finally to high pastures on a 3,200m plateau. You pass by e scenic Kharka of Meta, 3560m, a non permanent winter settlement of Nar, where you are likely to share the trail with a few yaks! This morning is one of the loveliest walks in the Himalayas. Stay overnight in camp or lodge.
Dropping steeply down to the river, you trek for a while along the river bank and past the “submarine” rock, passing some small possible campsites along the way. You start to see some of the unique, colorful Chortens for which Nar and Phu are famous. You have to walk carefully across a small glacial stream before reaching a larger one with a bridge only half covered with large slabs of slate. Another hour and a half of trekking through scenic canyon and gorges, you reach the Phu gate. This ancient gate provides you with you first view of the three villages of Phu, as well as an old “dzong” and the remains of the two forts, all now in ruins, but impressively situated atop the flatlands before Phu. Stay overnight in camp or lodge.
You can have interaction with locals and explore up the wide valley systems above you. You might walk up the valley to the summer grazing settlement or Kharka at Ngoru, a three hour’s walk past the gompa. Phu itself is an incredibly interesting village and you can observe the villagers spinning their yak and sheep wool and chat. Stay overnight in camp.
You get back through Phu gate, descend to the river and retrace your step back to Junam Kharka which is a lovely spot for camping. Stay overnight in camp or lodge.
This day you trek down the old bridge spanning a deep, contoured and narrow gorge and all the way back up again. The scenery is stunning. Below you sit Gyalbu Kumbu, built in 1650, and Satte Gompa, both empty. You finally reach the Nar gates at the top of the hill, and pass by yet another line of wonderfully painted, bamboo topped Chortens and a large tiered chorten before turning the corner and being rewarded with sublime views of Nar, the undulating patterns of the surrounding barley and mustard fields, four old colorful and traditional Gompas and the snow peaks looming overhead. Stay overnight in camp or lodge.
Stay overnight in camp or lodge.
The Kang La is not a diffucult pass, but it could be a long day if there is snow on the pass. The Kang La, at 5240m, is an absolutely spectacular pass looking over Annapurna II, Gangapurna, Tilicho peak, the peaks surrounding Tilicho and the airport at Hongde. The trail down is steep and gradual down towards the end.
Ngawal, on the upper Pisang route of the Annapurna circuit (off the main Annapurna circuit), can be reached in as little as two hours from the pass, but the walk down is so nice that you will take it easy and enjoy the views. Just before Ngawal is an unusual grouping of Chortens and prayer flags, and marks a meditation cave far up in the hills. Ngawal is a wonderful, old village of cobbled streets, prayer wheels and beautiful architecture, obviously a hub of religious activity in previous times. Stay overnight in camp or lodge.
This day you walk through the leveled path along the bank of Marshyangdi River to reach Manang. On the way you pass pine forests, villages such as Braga and farming terraces. You can enjoy the views of Annapurna range, Tilicho Mountain and beautiful landscapes. Manang is a small town. Stay overnight in lodge.
Today is an important rest day for acclimatization before crossing the Thorung La Pass. There are optional walks such as crossing the river to see the tremendous icefall coming down from the Annapurna, or climbing high above the village for a full panorama of the Annapurna range and the Manang Valley. Stay overnight at lodge.
This morning the trail ascends gently all the way to Yak Kharka passing through Gunsang village (3960m). En route, you can see panoramic mountain views all day long. Stay overnight at lodge
Leaving Yak Kharka, you climb gradually to a ridge before descending to the headwaters of Marshyangdi. After a short ascend along the mountain path on the right bank, you follow a narrow trail across an unstable spree slope and then descend to Thorung Phedi. Stay overnight at lodge.
Today will be a long day of walking so you will leave early morning. The trail becomes steep immediately and after around 4 hours of steady climbing, you see chorten and prayer flags fluttering from the Thorong La pass. Thorong La pass is one of the highest passes in the Annapurna region. Once you are at the pass, you will start your descent along the Jhong Khola Valley to Muktinath as the moraines eventually give way to grassy slopes. Muktinath is one of the most sacred places in the Himalaya for both Hindus and Buddhists. Stay overnight at lodge.
Today you continue down for an early two hours and then walk along a flat path until you reach Jomsom. Stay overnight at lodge.
The flight is a scenic one with panoramic views of Himalayan peaks, especially Annapurna, Dhaulagiri, Nilgiri etc. and Kaligandaki River. The flight to/from Jomsom happens only in the morning because of high wind in afternoon time. Stay overnight at hotel in Pokhara
After breakfast early morning, drive from Pokhara to Kathmandu that takes about seven hours. En route, you will enjoy the mountain views, green sceneries, rice terrace fields, vegetable fields and people being engaged in their daily life activities. If you choose to fly back to Kathmandu, it takes about 25 minutes. There are several flights from Kathmandu to Pokhara from morning to afternoon.
Below is a list of equipment and clothing required for trekking. The necessity of these items depends on the type, altitude, timing and destination of trekking. Appropriate trekking gears are not only required for the comfort/pleasure of your trek but also to improve safety factor. Please have a look over these items in order to fully prepare and thoroughly enjoy the trekking.
Daypack, Rucksack, Sleeping bag, Duffel bag, Walking Poles, walking boots, sandals, Toiletries (Soaps, Toilet papers, Sanitizers, toothpaste, tooth brush, etc.)
Thermal underwear, Down jacket, Shorts, Trekking trousers, Towels, Woolen gloves, Gaiters, Fleece jacket or Pullover, Wind/water proof jacket, Raincoat, Warm socks, buff
Sun hat, Sunglasses, Snow goggles, Sunscreen, Lip balm
Headlamp, Flash light, Binoculars, Cameras (chargers and batteries),
Water bottle/bladder, Water purification Iodine tablets, Energy bars and snacks
First Aid Kit
Altimeter, Compass, Binoculars, Books/magazines, GPS, Pocket knife, Candles (for lodges), Notebook with pencil/pen, etc
Additional items for camping trek:
Tent, Stove and fuel, Utensils for cooking, eating and drinking, sleeping mattresses
Note: We can also provide sleeping bag, down jacket, duffel bag, walking poles, and First Aid Kit in case if you don’t have one. These items are inclusive of total package price.