Do you know that trekking is the most popular touristic activity to do in Nepal? The presence of cascading hills and snowy mountains along with the multi-ethnic villages make it a heaven for an enthralling walking experience. No wonder, thousands of trekkers trek the Nepal Trekking routes. Everest region, Annapurna region, and Langtang region are the most popular trekking locales. These are also commercial sites for trekking and are often crowded. Nowadays, lots of people are placing queries about trekking on some off-the-beaten trekking routes. Among countless tranquil and serene trekking routes, the Manaslu region stands out tall. However, trekkers need to know lots of things about the region. Therefore, in today’s blog, let’s know more about the complete guide to Manaslu Trekking.
Manaslu Region is within the restricted trekking area as listed by the Nepal Government. There are few places in the northern side of Nepal under this category. The northern side of Nepal has a border with Tibet. During the Tibetan uprising against the Chinese Government, lots of Khampa people initiated the movement from this side of the country. Nepal Government has the One China policy. Therefore, it prevents any kind of movement against China. In order to reduce the movement of Khampa people, the region is listed as a restricted region. Some people argue that these places hold their own culture and traditions. They are unique and are part of Nepal’s cultural heritage. So, in order to preserve these traditions and cultural values, the Manaslu region is listed as a restricted trekking region.
Every trekker needs to acquire four permits for the Manaslu Trekking. They are immigration-restricted area permits, ACAP (Annapurna Conservation Area Project), MCAP (Manaslu Conservation Area Project), and TIMS cards (Trekkers’ Information Management System). These permits are mandatory for every trekker. A solo trekker is not allowed to do the trekking. Each permit cost should pay $10 per day for 10 Days. A group of a minimum of two trekkers is needed for the trek accompanied by the licensed Trekking Guide.
The region is accessible via roadway and helicopter flight only. There isn’t any airport for regular flights unlike the Everest region or Annapurna region of Nepal. Therefore, after completion of all the documentation formalities, the trek can be termed as a guaranteed departure destination. The trailhead used to be Aarughat but the extension of the road network has curtailed the number of days of trekking. Nowadays, trekking starts either from Machha Khola or Soti Khola.
The mode of transportation to the trailhead place is either by local bus or jeep. There are two trekking routes in the region. They are the Manaslu Circuit Trek route and Tsum Valley Trek route. However, some trekkers accommodate both destinations in one single itinerary. Villages like Samagaon and Tsum are the major places where there is a dense population of people. Most of the sections of the trekking route are along the Budi Gandaki River with many crossings through suspension bridges or make-shift wooden bridges.
The hardest day on this trek is the crossing of Larkya La Pass (5160 m). Even if the trek is moderately challenging, the vista is spectacular. One can see the mountains from the Annapurna Himalayan range and Langtang range. Some people have also extended the trekking trip by adding the Annapurna Circuit Trek itinerary as trekkers meet the round trek route upon crossing the Larke La Pass.
Yes, for any kind of high-altitude trekking activities, we need to do acclimatization activities. The Manaslu Trekking also requires proper acclimatization. Therefore, trekkers stay a day extra in Samagaon Village and perform acclimatization activities. The hike of nearby hills, villages, and monasteries is the acclimatization activity. The major principle of proper acclimatization is to reach the higher altitude destination and spend overnight at a low altitude.
The difficulty level of trekking is moderately challenging. The route is prone to landslides and flooding. In some sections of the trek route, trekkers have to cross the stream and rivers either barefoot or through wooden bridges. The area is less crowded and there is a high chance of trekkers getting lost. Therefore, you need to heed the instructions of the trekking guide. If you are physically fit and adopt good food habits, it would not be a problem to successfully complete the trek. Be prepared for the continuous walking uphill and downhill trail for about 6 – 7 hours a day. Travel insurance is mandatory. Both the trekkers and trekking crew members must be insured with the plan of helicopter rescue, accidents, and medical coverage.
In the lower section of the Manaslu Region, there are multi-ethnic people. Brahmins, Chhetris, Gurung, Magar, Tamang, and Dalits are the major communities residing in these parts. However, the upper section of the trekking route is habituated by Nepalese Tibetans. The major religions of the people are Hinduism, Buddhism, and Bonpo. People are friendly and offer impeccable hospitality to trekkers. The presence of multi-ethnic people means countless festivals. Trekkers can enjoy the festive celebrations with the locals if their trip falls within the festivals.
Almost every trekking route that runs commercial trekking activities has numerous teahouses or lodges. These establishments offer menus with lots of food choices ranging from local delicacies to Western food items. However, high-altitude places offer lesser choices of food items. As for the drinking water, you can find bottled mineral water in almost every lodge. Therefore, you don’t have to use the water purifying pill.
If you would like to drink the natural spring water then use the purifying pill before drinking. The rooms have basic amenities and in most of the lodges, trekkers have to use the room on twin sharing basis with common toilets. If you’re considering trekking to the Manaslu region in 2023 find acceptable treks like the lower Manaslu scenic trek, Manaslu circuit trek, Manaslu base camp trek, and Tsum valley trek.