Manaslu is the eighth highest mountain in the world standing at the elevation of 8,163 meters located in the west-central part of Nepal about 64 km east of Annapurna. Considered as one of the most demanding trek, Manaslu Circuit trek offers its trekkers an experience of a lifetime. View of the breathtaking mountains like Ganesh Himal, Himchuli, Ngadi Chuli and Mt. Manaslu itself will be an additional reward to you. The first people known to scale this eighth highest peak were Toshio Imanishi and Gyalzen Norbu on May 9, 1956. Only after 1911, the then Majesty of Nepal Government declared it as a trekking region. In recent days, people from all around the globe come for trekking and traveling here. However, since Manaslu still lies under restricted area, you are not allowed to enter the territory unless you get a permit from the Government of Nepal and have professional guide or Sherpa with you.
Trail to Manaslu follows through green and golden terraced field surrounded by majestic hills and unsurmounted peaks. Trek begins after 7-8 hours of ride to Soti Khola of Gorkha, a district carrying a strong history of Nepal. During your long journey by bus, you will encounter changes in the landscape as you move away from the hustle-bustle of the city. You can stop on the way; meet with local people residing in one of the villages. Interacting with local residents is the best way to know more about their culture and lifestyle. Trek to Manaslu has more to offer than just a steep climb to the mountains. It is the best reward to those whose intention is to perceive nature at its purest form. Manaslu is famous for portraying six climatic zones which gives backpackers an opportunity to experience a number of magnificent sceneries along the way. Unlike other regions, plants of tropical to alpine ecological zones both can be discovered here. Around 1,500- 2,000 plant species counting various medicinal herbs and aromatic plants grow here throughout the year. In addition to that, Manaslu is a sanctuary to over 110 species of birds, 11 butterflies and 33 mammals including some of the world’s endangered ones like Red Pandas and Snow Leopards. Two major ethnic groups inhabiting this region are Gurung and Sherpa, following Buddhism sharing much of their history and culture with its neighboring territory Tibet. While on the way to mountains, there are several ancient monasteries where you can find locals and tourists praying for the successful venture that lies ahead. Villages en route to Manaslu are Syala Village, Samagaon, Samdo, Pang Phuchi and Bimtang. One can opt for taking rest in one of these villages for proper acclimatization while ascending. Total of seventeen days of this expedition will give a perfect opportunity for travelers to explore the wide variation of nature and rich culture of Nepal. Larkya La is one of the most dramatic pass in the mountains and the highest point of your 17-day Manaslu circuit trek. With its own hurdles, Larkya La is the most challenging part of this trek and needs few hours of strenuous walk on rough and Slope Mountains. Tea house treks have been gaining popularity lately because of the facilities given. They give you access to internet and electricity. Cost of lodging is cheaper however food costs expensive in the mountains. Besides tea houses, trekkers can opt for camping under the stars. Before tea houses came in light, camping was the only option for night stay to the mountaineers. Manaslu trekking is one of the hidden trekking routes of Nepal with less population visiting the region in comparison to other trekking places. For those who are looking forward to travel an isolated route, this trek is the best choice. Although categorized as strenuous trek, it is possible for a non experienced or a first time climbers to successfully reach the summit, however, with high level of fitness and strong willpower. Walk of 6-8 hrs up and down rocky and snowy mountains is what makes the trek tiring. In case of the new climbers, it takes maximum 25 days to complete the trek. Manaslu is a remote area of Nepal with roads still under construction which is why it is one of the less traveled mountain routes. After the earthquake hit Barpak in lower Manaslu Circuit trek in April 2015, some of the trails were damaged especially in between Soti Khola and Jagat. Now that two years have passed, trails to Manaslu are safer than before. Locals and foreigners in collaboration made a huge contribution to make this region a better and safer place again. September, October and November is the best month to go for Manaslu Circuit trek. March, April and May are the alternative months for trekking. These three months are the busiest months throughout the year. This time of the year gives trekkers magnificent panoramic views of regional mountains.
If Manaslu circuit trek has been in your bucket list for quite a long time, perhaps it’s time you make it come true. Go for suitable trekking packages online and make sure they have what you need. You need to arrange the treks through a legal travel companies. There are number of travel agencies who offer same package in different rates. It all depends on the type of service you require. There are always alternative routes to the destination. The cost might differ with the change in trekking days as you have to lengthen your stay at the lodges. In case if you wish to travel in budget, the best thing to do is to have a talk with the agency people in person. Doing so, not only you will save yourself money, but also be crystal clear about your trip. Make sure you’re fully prepared prior heading for the trip. Ask your agencies the necessary equipments and supplies. Things are really expensive as you move to the mountains. A last moment shopping can be a huge help during emergencies. Do not forget to pack first aid kits. Things get rough resulting to severe pain and aches in your body parts as you walk rough steep mountains for next couple of weeks. Altitude sickness is always a concern for trekkers and mountaineers. Research online or consult with your guides regarding signs and symptoms of altitude sickness. There are altitude medicine clinics built in different trekking places of Nepal. Every trekking is fun; it becomes special when you’re safe and alive every moment.