- Experience traditional life in the villages of Dhampus, Landruk, and Ghandruk
- Get classic views of the Annapurna range and Dhaulagiri along the trek
- Learn about Gurung culture, the largest ethnic group in the Nepal Himalaya
- Stay in the famous Ker & Downey lodges for a taste of luxury each night
|Day 1||Welcome to Kathmandu!||Kathmandu|
|Day 2||Fly from Kathmandu to Pokhara, Drive to Astam||Astam|
|Day 3||Trek from Astam to Dhampus (1700m)||Dhampus|
|Day 4||Trek from Dhampus to Landruk (6,234 ft / 1900 m)||Landruk|
|Day 5||Trek from Landruk to Ghandruk (6,365 feet / 1,940 m)||Ghandruk|
|Day 6||Trek from Ghandruk to Kimche, Drive to Pokhara||Pokhara|
|Day 7||Depart Kathmandu|
Day 1: Welcome to Kathmandu!
As you fly into Kathmandu, you'll have beautiful views over the city, the Himalaya, and of the terraced fields below. After going through customs, a representative will be waiting to greet you and guide you through the initial culture shock of Kathmandu’s narrow, winding streets to get you settled into your hotel.
Once you've settled in, head out and explore the city. Durbar Square is a great place to start your exploration, where you'll walk through narrow alleyways teeming with small shops, ancient temples, and local restaurants. If you want to stretch your legs, Swayambhunath, the white stupa rising above the valley, is the perfect spot to catch the sunset over the valley.
In the evening, the tourist hub of Thamel is a good place to grab your first meal, with a variety of restaurants to chose from offering both Western and local Nepali dishes.
Day 2: Fly from Kathmandu to Pokhara, Drive to Astam
After an early breakfast, you will be transferred to the domestic airport for your flight to Pokhara. This is a stunning half-hour flight along the Himalayan Range, seeing four of the world’s fourteen giant mountains over 8000m: Dhaulagiri, Annapurna I, Manaslu, and Shishapangma, before landing in Pokhara.
After landing, you'll be picked up and driven out of town (1-2 hours) taking a scenic route to the village of Astam, entering a completely diﬀerent world from that of Kathmandu. Along the way, you can see the magniﬁcent views of the Annapurna Range and Machapuchare.
Day 3: Trek from Astam to Dhampus (1700m)
This morning, you'll rise to a spectacular view (weather permitting) of the Annapurna range and a hearty breakfast to get you ready for the day ahead. You'll hit the trail and follow the ridgeline to the beautiful Gurung village of Dhampus. The Gurung people are a famous ethnic group in Nepal, well known for their role in the Gorkha regiments of the Nepali, Indian, and British armies. Tonight, you'll stay in one of the famous Ker & Downey lodges, called the Basanta (meaning springtime) Lodge. You'll have amazing views from the garden and can relax with happy hour drinks and take it all in.
Trekking time: 3-4 hours
Day 4: Trek from Dhampus to Landruk (6,234 ft / 1900 m)
After breakfast, you'll trek up to the village of Pothana and onwards to Deurali through rhododendron and orchid forest that holds a variety of bird species. From on top of the ridge at Deurali, you'll have great views of the Himalaya, including Mt. Dhaulagiri, the highest mountain in this region.
You'll have time to enjoy the views and a well-earned rest, then descend through forest to Tolka, a small beautiful Gurung village rich in culture. You'll then proceed on to Beri Kharka and, from here, the trail descends through forest and villages to Landruk. Landruk is a large Gurung village situated above the Modi River where you'll stay the night in a local teahouse. Lunch will be served en-route.
Trekking time: 4-6 hours
Day 5: Trek from Landruk to Ghandruk (6,365 feet / 1,940 m)
Enjoy the last moments of your higher elevation views with breakfast in Landruk. Then, the trail begins with a steep descent towards the Modi Khola (river) for about an hour, followed by a steep ascent of 2-3 hours through scattered villages to Ghandruk, with great views of the Himalaya en route.
Eventually, you'll reach the village of Ghandruk, one of the largest Gurung settlements in western Nepal. Once here, you will have time to enjoy the landscapes and snow-capped peaks like Gangapura, Machhapuchhre (Fishtail), and Mount Annapurna.
If time permits, visit the Annapurna Mountain Conservation Area Project (ACAP) headquarters. The ACAP is the first conservation area and the largest protected area in Nepal. Rich in biodiversity, the area offers over 1,000 species of flowering plants, mammals, amphibians, and birds. You can learn about tourism management (and its effect on the environment) and activities that benefit local communities.
Trekking time: 4-5 hours (2.5 miles / 4 km)
Day 6: Trek from Ghandruk to Kimche, Drive to Pokhara
After breakfast in Ghandruk, you'll make an easy trek downhill to Kimche where a jeep will be waiting to transfer you to your hotel in Pokhara.
Trekking time: 1 hour (2.4 miles / 3.9 km)
Day 7: Depart Kathmandu
It's time to say farewell to Nepal. Enjoy your last moments in Kathmandu with breakfast in a café, a city stroll, and/or souvenir shopping. A representative will meet you at your hotel and drive you to the airport for your return flight home. It's good to be at the airport at least 2 hours prior to departure.