Annapurna base camp trek is one of the popular trek in nepal.The trek is through diverse landscapes like mountains,paddy fields,picturesque villages,forest,meadows and along the river.In the end you’ll be rewarded with the view of the entire Annapurna range that leaves you spellbound.
Best time to visit: October-November and March-May
Difficulty grade: Moderate
Duration: 7-9 days
Stay: There are trekking huts and homestays in each villages.But higher you go lesser the number.It’s better to make a call and book in advance for the higher camps during peak season.You’ll get contact number from your first stay point.All trekking huts are well equipped with comfortable rooms,warm blanket,wi-fi and charging station.You can also get hot shower at higher camp.
Food: Trekking huts are well equiped.You can get almost everything.But the traditional Nepalese thali “dal-bhat-tarkari” containing rice,dal,vegetable curry is the best one.You can refill water in every hut.
Cost: Fooding and lodging will cost 2000-2500 NPR/day.
Getting a permit: Very easy to get one from Nepal Tourism Board,POKHARA(open at 10:00 a.m.).Things require for getting permit
1.two passport size photo 2.xerox copy of passport(indian citizen can submit copy of adhar/voter card)
Transportation to trek starting point: From POKHARA-BAGLUNG bus park, hop on a bus/shared sumo to GHANDRUK village/SIWAI.Bus goes first to SIWAI,wait for some time,return the same way and take right turn to GHANDRUK village.So if you want to go to GHANDRUK don’t debark at SIWAI.
MY SOLO JOURNEY
After getting the permit i went to POKHARA-BAGLUNG bus park and hopped on a local bus to GHANDRUK.My plan was to start the trek from ghandruk but i accidentally left the bus at SIWAI.It was around 3:00 p.m.So i took the trail to KYUMI,a very small village beside the MODI river.The trail is through terraced paddy fields and small villages.I reached there at 5:30 p.m. and it was almost dark.KYUMI have only two trekking hut.
Then the disaster happened.There was no room and dorm bed left.After searching for half an hour,i found a home near the bridge and asked for help.The owner happily welcomed me and arranged a room along with food.I was saved for the day.I’ll be grateful to them for the rest of my life.:)
After having tea and breakfast,i started my journey to CHOMRONG.There are two trail-one along the left bank of MODI river,another along the right and both again meet at NEW BRIDGE.I took the left one through the forest.After crossing a small bridge the trail gradually ascent to JHINUDANDA,a busy village,full of trekking huts,homestays and restaurant.There is a hot spring also.
After crossing the village the path became more steep to the top of the hill to CHOMRONG.There are two homestay at the entry point of CHOMRONG village.I stayed the second one.From here the view of the valley and river is very peaceful and breathtaking.Mt. MACHAPUCHARE is also well seen on clear day.The trail from GHANDRUK village also meets here.The main village of chomrong is 10 minutes walking distance and full of hotels, homestays, restaurant and souvenir shops.
There is a check point at CHOMRONG.You need to entry your details and show them the permit and the same during return.
From CHOMRONG the trail goes downhill to the bridge then uphill to upper SINUWA village.From here the trail goes through the forest.Small streams across the trail made it more beautiful.After crossing the forest,the trail goes downhill to bamboo village,then again gradually ascent to DOVAN.
I had plan to stay here but as i reached early, i didn’t make stop there.Another hour of walking and i made it to HIMALAYA village.This is a very small one,have three trekking huts surrounded by serene tranquil forest and hills.
And then the second disaster happened.The rooms was all prebooked.Likely i found the guy who is the owner of the homestay at CHOMRONG.He arranged a shared room and saved me for that day.I came to know that the first ever Annapurna sanctuary tourism festival have been held at annapurna base camp and that’s why there were shortage of accommodation.
Now i’m ready to start my thrilling journey to ABC.The trail gradually ascent upto a cave.From here you can see the DEURALI village far away nestle in the slope of the mountain.There are a glacier and a small stream at the trail.The trail on the glacier is muddy,slippery and dangerous.From deurali the trail is through open land,full of flowers and along the river.The mt. ANNAPURNA III and mt. MACHAPUCHARE are well seen throughout the trail.
After reaching the MBC I met again with my last night saviour and he told me that there are no accommodation available at ABC.So i stayed at MBC.This place is very beautiful surrounded by snow-capped mountains.At the evening,the place became more magical when the last ray of sun made the goodbye kiss to the snow-capped mountains.
I wake up early to see the sunrise.The weather was too cold but when the first ray of sun paints the annapurna range in orange,the celestial beauty made my heart warm.
After having breakfast,I went for ABC.The trail gradually ascent then through plane land.Due to festival,ABC was full of trekkers,visitors,media people,high rank people of Nepal and police.I took some pics and videos but all got deleted due to memory card defect.
After having some quality time,i came back to MBC,packed my bag and leave for HIMALAYA.At the evening i reached there and today i was not so lucky to get a room.
So i had to move on to DOVAN.It was already dark,the trail was around 1 hour through forest and i was all alone.I stopped before entering the forest,look back,saw the light of HIMALAYA at distance,thought about going back and stay outside for the rest of night but my adventurous soul pushed me hard to go on.So i step forward without second thought.After going for half an hour i heard footsteps at distance behind me. Seriously!!!!is this the time of a joke!!!!!!????In the dark forest,all alone,nothing around 2km or more and then suddenly footsteps following me like a horror movie.My heart running faster so my foot but the footsteps became more closure.Then i desperately looked back and saw a glimpse of torch-light and i felt relief.A local people with whom i met earlier at trail also going to dovan and i was the happiest person to hear this.Another 15 minutes through dark forest then i saw a glimpse of light at distance,the DOVAN village.I was lucky enough to get a single room here.
Today i came back to CHOMRONG and didn’t go further because the villages after JHINUDANDA have limited accommodation and i don’t want to relive my last night horror story.I had plenty of time to explore CHOMRONG village and it was worth the time spend.
Now the last day of my thrilling,beautiful journey had come to knock my heart’s door.I started early to reach POKHARA by afternoon.This time i took the other trail from the new bridge.There are a beautiful waterfall after crossing NEW BRIDGE.After hrs of walking i reached at KYUMI and met with the family who saved me on very first day.They are the real hero.After spending some memorable time,i started my journey,reached at SIWAI,took a shared taxi and reached POKHARA by 5:00 p.m.