The Manaslu Circuit trek is far less crowded than other classic treks in Nepal and remains a true remote adventure, despite its increase in popularity since teahouses were built here in 2010. The Manaslu trek features all the great aspects of a classic trek in Nepal: epic scenery, spectacular suspension bridge crossings and a 5100m (17,000-ft.) Himalayan pass.

Upcoming Departures

Date Duration Availability Cost per person
Feb 13, 2018 15 days Filling up $995 USD Inquire
Mar 6, 2018 15 days Available $995 USD Inquire
Mar 26, 2018 15 days Filling up $995 USD Inquire
View all departure dates

Prices for our 2018 Manaslu Group departures include guide, porter, lodging, transport and permits, but exclude food. 

Trek Overview

Fast facts
Min. duration 13 days
Max. elevation 5,106 m / 16,752 ft
(Larkya La pass)
Start/finish Soti Khola/Besisahar
Difficulty Challenging
Trek style Teahouse
Manaslu Circuit Trek Map
Manaslu Circuit trek map

Despite its recent rise in popularity, the Manaslu Trek remains remote and off-the-beaten-path compared to the better known teahouse treks in Nepal. The trek takes you around Manaslu, the world's eighth highest mountain at 8,163 meters (26,781 ft). 

Why trek the Manaslu Circuit Trek?

Experts consider the Manaslu Circuit Trek among the best treks in Nepal.

Top highlights of this trek include:

  • It is far less crowded than its more well known peers Everest Base Camp and Annapurna Circuit. The word is getting out about Manaslu, but there are still about 10 times fewer trekkers on the Manaslu Trail
  • The trek is wild and remote, yet there are teahouses at every day stage, so trekkers don’t need to bring tents and food, making it more accessible and affordable than similar treks.
  • The trailhead is reached over land, avoiding the need for domestic flights. 
  • The first part of the trail follows the Buri Gandaki, a deep, long river gorge, with many suspension bridge crossings 
  • The scenery provides all Nepal has to offer: you'll trek from the subtropical jungle at lower elevations, through the Himalayan foothills to the high, cold and challenging crossing of the Larkya La above 5,100 meters / 17,000 feet.
The village of Gho
The village of Gho - Photo by Louis fiorello - March 2016
Crossing the Larkya La
Crossing the snow covered Larkya La in October 2016 - Photo by Rohan Delhikan
View from Bimthang
View from Bimthang, near the end of the trek - Photo by Rohan Delhikan - October 2016
Clouds opening up over the Manaslu Range
Cloud cover giving way to views of the Manaslu Range - photo by Michael Freel - September 2016

Getting to the trailhead

The trailhead of the Manaslu Circuit trek is the closest to Kathmandu of the major Nepalese treks. That said, it's still an adventurous 126 km (80 miles) drive from Kathmandu to Soti Khola, which takes about 6 hours by jeep (recommended) or 8+ hours by public bus. If road conditions are challenging (which is often the case at the tail end of the monsoon in September) you may have to start walking in Arughat, which adds an extra day.

Permits

You need a trekking permit for the Manaslu Trek. Solo trekkers are not allowed, a minimum group size of 2 is required.

Detailed itinerary (15 days)

Larkya Pass - highest point of the Around Manaslu Trek - March 2016, photo by Karyn Anderson
Larkya Pass - highest point of the Around Manaslu Trek - March 2016, photo by Karyn Anderson
Day Destination Altitude
Day 01 Drive to Sotikhola via Arughat by jeep 775m
Day 02 Soti Khola - Machhakhola 800m
Day 03 Trek to Jagat 1300m
Day 04 JTrek to Philim 1560m
Day 05 Trek to Deng 1865m
Day 06 Trek to Ghap 2165m
Day 07 Trek to Lho 3180m
Day 08 Trek to Sama Gaon/Ro 3525m
Day 09 In Sama Gaon – acclimatisation day 3525m
Day 10 Trek to Samdo 3850m
Day 11 In Samdo 3850m
Day 12 Trek to Dharamsala 4460m
Day 13 Cross Larkya La (5135m) to Bimtang (3590m) 3590m
Day 14 Trek to Dharapani 1860m
Day 15 Drive to Kathmandu  

The Tsum Valley Extension (19 days)

If you have the time, we highly recommend extending your trek for another week by adding the side trip to Tsum Valley to your itinerary. Tsum Valley is even more remote than the main Manaslu trail, and has amazing views, including the famous view point above Mu Gompa pictured below.   

View point above Mu Gompa Tsum Valley with view on backside of Ganesh Himal
View point above Mu Gompa in Tsum Valley with view on backside of Ganesh Himal - Photo by Alex Treadway
Day Destination Altitude
Day 01 Kathmandu - Soti Khola (by jeep) 775m
Day 02 Soti Khola - Machhakhola 900m
Day 03 Macchakhola - Jagat 1300m
Day 04 Jagat - Phillim 1590m
Day 05 Phillim - Chumling 2360m
Day 06 Chumling to Chhokangparo 3010m 
Day 07 Chhokangparo to Nile 3361m
Day 08 Nile to Mu Gompa (3700m) and Chhokangparo  3361m 
Day 09 Gumba Lungdang to Lokpa 2240m
Day 10 Lokpa to Ghap 2160m
Day 11 Ghap to Lho 3180m
Day 12 Lho to Samagaon 3580m
Day 13 Day trip to Manaslu Base Camp 4400m
Day 14 Samagaon to Samdo 3875m
Day 15 Climb Samdo Ri or take a day trip to Tibet border 3875m
Day 16 Samdo to Dharamsala  4460m
Day 17 Dharamsala to Bimtang (via Larke Pass 5160m) 3590m
Day 18 Bimtang to Dharapani 1963m
Day 19 Dharapani - Kathmandu (by jeep) 1400m

Boutique-style camping trek

Camping makes for a unique way for trekkers seeking a special Manaslu experience (Photo: Kim Bannister)

While most trekkers stay in teahouses, some choose to camp. The advantages of camping include more flexibility to select camping spots that are further away from the villages where most trekkers congregate, and higher quality and more varied food, since your crew will be carrying in supplies. Kimkim local specialist Kim Bannister runs an annual boutique Manaslu camping trek in her unique "Kamzang style". While pricier than the standard Manaslu teahouse trek, this option is great for trekkers seeking a "higher touch" experience. More info and dates & pricing can be found here.

Group departures and Private Treks

Kimkim local specialists are running small group fixed departures in 2018. The treks include guide, porter, lodging, transport and permits, but exclude food. Our partners also run private treks just for you and your travel partners that can be customized to your exact needs.

Map

Map of Manaslu Circuit Trek - The Ultimate off-the-beaten-path Trek in Nepal - 13 to 19 days
Map of Manaslu Circuit Trek - The Ultimate off-the-beaten-path Trek in Nepal - 13 to 19 days

Upcoming Departures

Date Duration Availability Cost per person
Feb 13, 2018 15 days Filling up $995 USD Inquire
Mar 6, 2018 15 days Available $995 USD Inquire
Mar 26, 2018 15 days Filling up $995 USD Inquire
Apr 10, 2018 15 days Available $995 USD Inquire
Apr 24, 2018 15 days Available $995 USD Inquire
May 8, 2018 15 days Available $995 USD Inquire
May 22, 2018 15 days Available $995 USD Inquire
Jun 5, 2018 15 days Available $995 USD Inquire
Jun 19, 2018 15 days Available $995 USD Inquire

Recent Trip Reviews

Related trips planned by kimkim specialists

Manaslu circuit trek - the ultimate off-the-beaten-path trek in nepal - 13 to 19 days, Nepal - Nov 13 - Nov 30, 2017

Traveler: Bronwen K. - Local specialist: Ngima Dorji Sherpa

We had a fantastic time trekking the Manaslu Circuit with Lhakpa (guide) and Pasang (porter/assistant guide). It was our first time trekking in Nepal and Lhakpa and Pasang did everything they could to ensure that we were safe, and enjoyed our time trekking. They are amazing guides and people and we would highly recommend them for anyone planning a trip to Nepal (from beginner to advanced), as they are very experienced, highly skilled, and knowledgable. Ngima was also excellent to... read more

We had a fantastic time trekking the Manaslu Circuit with Lhakpa (guide) and Pasang (porter/assistant guide). It was our first time trekking in Nepal and Lhakpa and Pasang did everything they could to ensure that we were safe, and enjoyed our time trekking. They are amazing guides and people and we would highly recommend them for anyone planning a trip to Nepal (from beginner to advanced), as they are very experienced, highly skilled, and knowledgable. Ngima was also excellent to communicate with to book and arrange the trek. Ngima was always very responsive to our questions and the whole trek was well organised. Bronwen and Wayne.

Nar, phu and annapurna circuit with tilicho, Nepal - Nov 2 - Nov 20, 2017

Traveler: Janet T. - Local specialist: Mads Mathiasen

Mads was very responsive when I was in the process of booking my trip. My guide and porter, Chhiri and Suppa (sp?) were a 10/10 and I will most definitely request their services in the future. Chhiri's knowledge of the mountains were above and beyond expectations; he was able to provide the most amazing and memorable trek and I cannot thank him enough for my experience.

Manaslu circuit trek, Nepal - Oct 16 - Oct 30, 2017

Traveler: Joel K. - Local specialist: Mads Mathiasen

Our guide was amazing and everything was very simple to set up

Manaslu circuit, Nepal - Apr 1 - Apr 26, 2017

Traveler: Anna W. - Local specialist: Amanda Delecca

Our 3 generational family trip into the Tsum Valley and Manaslu Circuit was absolutely stunning!! From beginning to end, we were impressed with the input from Amanda in the organisation/communication with loads of questions promptly answered. She was very friendly and helpful and met us both before and after the hike - we would not hesitate to book through kimkim again and use Himalayan Trails. Both hotels were perfectly suited in both location and budget, we particularly enjoyed 'Mums... read more

Our 3 generational family trip into the Tsum Valley and Manaslu Circuit was absolutely stunning!! From beginning to end, we were impressed with the input from Amanda in the organisation/communication with loads of questions promptly answered. She was very friendly and helpful and met us both before and after the hike - we would not hesitate to book through kimkim again and use Himalayan Trails. Both hotels were perfectly suited in both location and budget, we particularly enjoyed 'Mums Garden' in Pokhara after the hike - a sanctuary to rest weary legs!

As for the hike itself - we were extremely grateful to our fantastic guide Chhiri. He was both very professional and knowledgeable and good company. He and the two porters, Sam and Siri made our hike all the more special. They did far more than meet the minimum requirements of a guide/porting service, they became good friends and went out of their way to share their culture, country and themselves with us.

17 days hiking with 3 generations couldn't have been done in a more special place. The days walking were well mixed with some longer and others shorter, when altitude became a factor. The weather was perfect which always is a bonus and the Tsum valley was probably the highlight (just ahead of Larke Pass) - The mix of monasteries and walking through ancient villages was very special. Chhiri was also very caring and conscientious with the responsibility of taking my 10yr old daughter on such a long hike. While she had done long hikes before, she'd never been to this altitude at 5100m - she loved the experience and Chhiri again took great care with all of us.

Thank you does not quite cover it!!!

Amanda was incredibly helpful, both online prior to booking in answering a myriad of questions and once in Kathmandu, meeting with us both before and after the hike. She made sure the trip was seamless from start to end and was very friendly and knowledgeable.

In wanting to take my 10yr old daughter on such a long hike and to 5100m, Amanda was very careful in giving advise and ensuring that we had a senior guide who had experience with children. This proved to be possibly the making of the hike with Chhiri being an excellent guide -and the envy of other hikers!

Thank you very much to Amanda for giving us such special memories. We would love to be back in Nepal one day!!

Manaslu circuit trek with heli drop in, Nepal - Mar 15 - Mar 31, 2017

Traveler: DANE W. - Local specialist: Amanda Delecca

We highly recommend Amanda and team. We had a fantastic trip and everything was organised seamlessly​

Amanda and team were always there looking after us. We really didn't need to worry about a thing. Our trekking guide was the envy of the rest of the group's we met on the trek so we felt very well looked after and in capable and safe hands.
We highly recommend a helicopter to get you to the where the best trekking starts if your budget allows.
Amanda and her team went above and beyond to make our trip to Nepal unforgettable.