Trekking Guide Regd. No: 293, License No: 205
(26 Years of Experiences in Himalaya)
We Are A Full Local Mountain Guide & Porter Service in Himalaya Since: 1997
  • Trek Duration
    14 Days
  • Max Altitude
  • Trip Grade
    Adventure/High Pass
  • Group Size
    Min : 02 Trekkers
  • Accommodation
    Hotel/Tea House
  • Start/Ending
    Sotikhola to Dharapani

Trip Overview

The Ultimate Guide to Manaslu Circuit Trek Tips, Itinerary & Highlights

Manaslu Circuit Trek you through the stunning Himalayan landscape of the Manaslu region. It is a challenging and adventurous trek that offers a unique cultural experience and spectacular mountain views. Along the way, you will pass through many remote villages where you can experience the rich culture and traditions of the local people. It is a challenging and rewarding trek that offers a unique cultural experience and breathtaking views of the Himalayas.

One of the highlights of the Manaslu Circuit Trek is crossing the Larkya La Pass, which stands at an altitude of 5,160 meters. The pass offers stunning panoramic views of the surrounding mountains, including Manaslu, the eighth-highest mountain in the world. The trek usually takes around 14 to 18 days to complete and is considered a strenuous trek. It requires a good level of fitness and some experience in trekking at high altitudes. The best time to do the Manaslu Circuit Trek is from September to November or from March to May when the weather is clear and the skies are blue. During the winter months, the pass may be closed due to heavy snowfall.

Why choose Manaslu Circuit Trek over other treks

Manaslu Circuit Trek is a unique trek that offers a blend of adventure and cultural immersion. Unlike other treks like Everest Base Camp and Annapurna Circuit, the Manaslu Circuit Trek is relatively uncrowded, allowing you to enjoy the stunning scenery and local culture without the hustle and bustle of large crowds. The trek offers a diverse landscape, from lush green forests to arid high-altitude valleys, and stunning views of towering peaks like Manaslu, the eighth-highest mountain in the world. The trek also takes you through charming local villages, offering a glimpse into the rich culture and traditions of the Nepalese people. For adventure seekers looking for a unique and off-the-beaten-path trek, the Manaslu Circuit Trek is an excellent choice.

Best time to go for Manaslu Circuit Trek

The best time to go for the Manaslu Circuit Trek is from September to November and March to May. During these months, the weather is stable, with clear skies and moderate temperatures, making it ideal for trekking. The monsoon season from June to August and the winter season from December to February should be avoided as the trails are slippery and dangerous. Trekking during the monsoon season can also lead to landslides and flooding, making it unsafe for hikers.

Highlights of Manaslu Circuit Trek

The Manaslu Circuit Trek offers a variety of highlights that make it a unique and unforgettable trek. Here are some of the must-see highlights along the way:

  • Stunning Mountain Views: One of the main highlights of the Manaslu Circuit Trek is the stunning mountain views it offers. The trek takes you through some of the most breathtaking landscapes in Nepal, offering panoramic views of towering peaks like Manaslu, the eighth-highest mountain in the world, and the Annapurna range.
  • cultural Immersion: The Manaslu Circuit Trek also offers a unique cultural immersion experience, taking you through charming local villages and offering a glimpse into the rich culture and traditions of the Nepalese people. The trek takes you through the villages of Sama, Samdo, and Lho, where you’ll have the opportunity to interact with the locals and learn about their way of life.
  • The Larkya La Pass: The Larkya La Pass is one of the most challenging and rewarding parts of the Manaslu Circuit Trek. The pass sits at an altitude of 5,135 meters and offers stunning views of the Manaslu Peak and the surrounding mountains. Crossing the pass is a challenging but unforgettable experience that will test your physical and mental endurance.

Essential gear for Manaslu Circuit Trek

Packing the right gear is essential for a successful and comfortable Manaslu Circuit Trek. Here are some essential items you should pack:

  • Trekking Boots: A good pair of trekking boots is essential for a comfortable and safe trek. Make sure your boots are waterproof and have a good grip, as the trails can be slippery and dangerous.
  • Warm Clothes: The Manaslu Circuit Trek takes you through some of the coldest parts of Nepal, so make sure you pack warm clothes like a down jacket, thermal underwear, and a warm hat.
  • Trekking Poles: Trekking poles can help reduce the impact on your knees and provide extra stability on slippery trails.
  • sleeping Bag: A good sleeping bag is essential for a comfortable night’s sleep, as the temperatures can drop below freezing at night.

Altitude sickness and how to avoid it

Altitude sickness is a common problem among trekkers in Nepal, and it’s essential to take the necessary precautions to avoid it. Here are some tips to help you avoid altitude sickness:

  • Acclimatize: Take your time to acclimatize to the altitude by spending a day or two in villages like Samagaon and Samdo.
  • Drink Plenty of Water: Staying hydrated is essential for avoiding altitude sickness, so make sure you drink plenty of water throughout the trek.
  • Avoid Alcohol and Smoking: Alcohol and smoking can increase the risk of altitude sickness, so it’s best to avoid them during the trek.

Food and Accommodation on Manaslu Circuit Trek

The Manaslu Circuit Trek offers a variety of accommodation options, from basic tea houses to more comfortable lodges. Most tea houses and lodges offer basic amenities like hot showers and Wi-Fi, but the quality can vary depending on the location. The food on the trek is mostly Nepali and Tibetan cuisine, with options like dal bhat, momos, and thukpa. Vegetarian and non-vegetarian options are available, but it’s best to stick to vegetarian options to avoid food poisoning.

Permits and Regulations for Manaslu Circuit Trek

To trek the Manaslu Circuit Trek, you’ll need to obtain the following permits:

  • Manaslu Restricted Area Permit: The Manaslu Restricted Area Permit is required to trek the Manaslu Circuit Trek and costs USD 100 per person for the first seven days and USD 15 per person per day thereafter.
  • Annapurna Conservation Area Permit: The Annapurna Conservation Area Permit is also required for the trek and costs NPR 3,000 per person.

Tips for Manaslu Circuit Trek

Here are some insider tips to help you make the most of your Manaslu Circuit Trek:

  • Hire a Guide and Porter: Hiring a guide and porter can make the trek more comfortable and enjoyable, as they can help carry your bags and provide valuable local knowledge.
  • Be Prepared for the Cold: The Manaslu Circuit Trek can be very cold, especially at higher altitudes, so make sure you pack warm clothes and a good sleeping bag.
  • Be Respectful of Local Customs: The Manaslu Circuit Trek takes you through some of the most remote and traditional villages in Nepal, so make sure you respect local customs and traditions.

Details Itinerary

Day 01: Arrive in Kathmandu Valley

Upon your arrival at Kathmandu airport, you will be met by our representative who will transfer you to your hotel. You will have the rest of the day to explore the city or rest.

Day 02: Preparation for Manaslu Special Permit and Explore day

On the second day in Nepal, we will spend the whole day in the Kathmandu Valley. It is because, on this day, we have to take a special permit to enter this route. Without a special trekking permit, you are not allowed to enter in this route because it is one of the restricted areas of Nepal. And on this day, we will explore all around the Kathmandu Valley and take some rest.

Day 03: Drive to Soti Khola (930m / 6 to 7hrs)

Start by leaving Kathmandu and heading towards the town of Dhading Besi. You can take the Prithvi Highway or the Pasang Lhamu Highway, depending on your preference. From Dhading Besi, continue driving towards Arughat Bazaar. This is a small town that is located on the banks of the Budhi Gandaki River. Once you reach Arughat Bazaar, you will need to cross the river and continue driving towards Soti Khola.

Day 04: Trek to Machha Khola (1340m / 6 to 7hrs)

The trek begins in the small village of Soti Khola. You will need to cross the suspension bridge over the Budhi Gandaki River to start the trek. You will need to follow the trail that runs alongside the Budhi Gandaki River. The trail is rocky and undulating, and you will need to cross several small streams and waterfalls along the way. As you trek along the river, you will pass through several small villages, including Lapubesi and Machha Khola. After trekking for 6 to 7 hours, you will reach the village of Machha Khola.

Day 05: Trek to Jagat (1410m / 6 to 7hrs)

Follow the trail along the river and cross the Machha Khola suspension bridge. The trail will take you through beautiful landscapes, lush forests, and small villages. After walking for a few hours, you will reach the village of Khorlabesi. Continue walking along the river and cross another suspension bridge. The trail will become steeper as you climb up the hill. After walking for a few more hours, you will finally reach Jagat.

Day 06: Trek to Philim (1600m / 6hrs)

The trail upstream along the Buri Gandaki River passes through small villages and terraced fields. The trail gradually ascends and descends, with a few steep sections along the way. After around 3-4 hours of walking, you will reach the village of Philim. The trek from Jagat to Philim offers a scenic and rewarding experience for those who enjoy hiking in the mountains.

Day 07: Trek to Deng (1804m / 6 to 7hrs)

Start in Philim and head east on the main trail towards Ekle Bhatti. Continue on the main trail towards Deng. The trail will start to climb uphill, and you will cross a few suspension bridges over the Budhi Gandaki River. After around 4 to 5 hours of walking, you should reach the village of Deng.

Day 08: Trek to Namrung (2630m / 6 to 7hrs)

Following the trail north, this will take you uphill through a forested area. After about 45 minutes to an hour, you will reach the village of Rana. From Rana, continue along the trail, you will take you uphill again for another hour or so. You will then reach the village of Bihi Phedi. From Bihi Phedi, continue along the trail for another hour or so until you reach the village of Ghap. After Ghap, the trail will continue uphill for another hour or so until you reach Namrung.

Day 09: Trek to Samagaon (3530m / 6 to 7hrs)

From Namrung, follow the trail that leads toward the north. After walking for about an hour, you will reach Lihi, a small village with traditional Tibetan houses and prayer flags. Continue walking on the trail that leads towards Sho, another small village with a monastery and a chorten. From Sho, you will get your first glimpse of the Manaslu peak. After walking for a couple of hours, you will reach Lho, a large village with several tea houses and lodges. From Lho, continue walking towards Samagaon. The trail passes through several small villages, and you will come across several suspension bridges along the way. After walking for about 6-7 hours, you will finally reach Samagaon.

Day 10: Rest day in Samagaon

Samagaon is surrounded by beautiful hills and forests, and going for a short hike can be a great way to enjoy the natural scenery. You can explore the village can be a great way to get a glimpse of the local lifestyle and culture. You can take a stroll through the village and observe the local architecture and lifestyle.

Day 11: Trek to Samdo (3860m / 4 to 5hrs)

Head east from the village; we will follow the trail that runs alongside the Budhi Gandaki River. After walking for about 30 to 40 minutes, you will come across a bridge over the river. Cross the bridge and continue on the trail that goes uphill. After a steep climb for about 2 to 3 hours, you will reach a small village called Kermo Kharka. From Kermo Kharka, continue on the trail that goes uphill.  After another 2 to 3 hours of walking, you will reach another small village called Samdo.

Day 12: Trek to Dharamsala (4460m / 4 to 5hrs)  

The route passes through a beautiful valley and along the banks of the Budhi Gandaki River. The trek offers spectacular views of the high mountains and the rugged terrain of the region. The trek from Samdo to Dharamsala is a challenging but rewarding experience for anyone who loves trekking and adventure.

Day 13: Cross Larkya La pass (5160m) and walk to Bimthang (3720m / 9hrs)

Today, first of all, we will climb Larkya La Pass. The trail climbs steeply to the Larkya La Pass. The trek to Larkya La Pass involves steep ascents and descents, rocky terrain, and glacier crossings. Once you reach the top of the pass, you will be rewarded with breathtaking views of the Manaslu and Annapurna mountain ranges. From Larkya La Pass, the trail descends to Bhimtang. The descent towards Bimthang is equally challenging and requires careful footing. The trek passes through beautiful forests, streams, and meadows.

Day 14: Trek to Gho (2515m / 5 to 6hrs)

From Bimthang, follow the main trail towards the northeast, following the Dudh Khola River.  You’ll pass through beautiful forests and meadows along the way. After around 3 kilometers, you’ll reach a small bridge over the river. Cross the bridge and continue following the trail on the other side. After another kilometer or so, you’ll reach a small settlement called Tilje. From Tilje, continue following the trail towards the northeast. You’ll pass through several small villages and cross a few more bridges along the way. After around 6 kilometers of hiking, you’ll reach the village of Gho.

Day 15: Trek to Dharapani (1940m / 5hrs)

The trail ascends gradually through forests and small settlements, offering stunning views of the surrounding mountains. From Upper Pisang, the trail continues along the Marsyangdi River and passes through the village of Ngawal before reaching the village of Braga. From Braga, the trail continues to Dharapani, passing through the villages of Manang and Tanki Manang.

Day 16: Drive to Besisahar and also drive to Kathmandu (9 to 10hrs)

You can also take a bus or shared jeep from Dharapani to Besisahar. The road from Dharapani to Besisahar is a scenic mountainous route with beautiful views of the Himalayas and the Marsyangdi River. Once you reach Besisahar, we will take a tourist bus to drive toward Kathmandu. Follow the highway and you will pass through beautiful mountainous terrain, small villages, and towns along the way. The drive from Besisahar to Kathmandu offers some breathtaking views of the Himalayan range, rivers, and valleys. After 5 to 6 hours of driving, you will reach the city of Kathmandu. The road leads you to the heart of the city where you can explore the historic temples, cultural landmarks, and other attractions that the city has to offer.

Day 17: Final Departure

This will be your last day in Nepal and on this day at the hotel lobby, there will be a guide who is with you in the trekking period. From the hotel, you will drive toward the international airport and see you take off from Nepal and also hope that you will give a chance to serve you again.      

Cost Details

Cost Includes

  • Airport / Hotel / Airport pick up and Drop by private car/van/bus.
  • Hotel In Kathmandu: 3 Nights of ***3-star accommodation in Kathmandu with breakfast.
  • Kathmandu to Machhakhola and Dharapani to Besi Shahar to Kathmandu by Public bus or local Jeep sharing
  • You’re Meal in During the Trekking as Your standard meals (3 times a day Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner with a cup of tea or coffee).
  • All Trekking Permit (MCA), (ACAP), Manaslu Special Permit.
  • Accommodation in Trekking: All accommodations in lodge/tea houses during the trek.
  • Trekking Guide: Government License Holder An experienced, helpful, friendly, and English-speaking Trekking Guide. His well-paid salary, meals, accommodation insurance, etc.
  • Trekking Porter: porters (1 porter for 2 people). Salary, Food, Drinks, Accommodation, Transportation.
  • After the Success Trip, Everest Trekking Routes will Provide Adventure Certificate.
  • Arrangement of Emergency Helicopter service which will be paid for by your Travel insurance company.
  • Medical supplies (first aid kit will be available).
  • All government taxes and service charges.

Cost Excludes

  • Meals  Extra Accommodation in Kathmandu
  • Private Jeep: Kathmandu Sotikhola and Dharapani to Kathmandu
  • personal expenses (bar bills, beer, coke, a bottle of water, Pot size tea or Coffee, hot water, phone call, laundry service, etc.)
  • Tips for guide, porters, and driver.

Trip Map


Cost & Date

Departure Date Duration Availability Cost Booking
09-11-2021 12 Days Available USD 1299 Per Person
01-11-2021 12 Days Available USD 1499 Per Person

Client Reviews



Breathtaking! - in every possible way Everest Base Camp

My once-in-a-lifetime experience with colleagues from Everest Trekking Routes Pvt. Ltd. started in the early season in 2023 in mid-February. After planning the trip without any problems and answering all the necessary questions via email or WhatsApp, I was met by Rabin (the boss of the trekking agency) at the airport in Kathmandu and then taken to the hotel, where I was finally able to meet my guide for the 12-day tour to Mount Everest Base Camp. Su Sil is an ideal hiking companion who, in addition to his profound knowledge of the region around Mount Everest, has a friendly and cheerful manner. The hotel, where I stayed the first night, left nothing to be desired and corresponded to an upper class hotel by Napalese standards.

The next morning, the flight left for Lukla at 7am as planned, Su Sil -my travel guide- had all the necessary documents for the flight ready and the adventure towards Mount Everest began…

My booking included an all-inclusive service, so you got 3 meals a day plus a fruit plate to cover your vitamin needs. The accommodation (tea houses) was chosen by the guide in a sensible and appropriate way along the way. In addition, Su Sil always had all the necessary documents for entering the national park at hand. From an altitude of 5000m above sea level, the altitude slowly began to affect me and I suffered extremely badly from altitude sickness, which manifested itself in headaches, loss of appetite and sleeplessness. However, Su Sil had all the necessary medication with him to reduce the effects of altitude sickness to a minimum. Su Sil could speak and understand English without any problems and could also respond to deep thought processes and follow other conversations without any problems. I also came into contact with other trekking groups, as the open-hearted nature of the trekking guides, often in the evenings by the fireplace in the tea house, led to conversations with people from all over the world, which were intensified by the positive mood of the guides among themselves.

At the end of the almost 2-week trek and after successfully climbing the first base camp of Mount Everest and Kala Patthar (5644m), I was again accommodated in the hotel from the first night for one last night. The hotel also has a spa and wellness area, which was logically used directly. The trekkers’ massage is highly recommended!

All in all, the 12-day trip was an absolutely incredible experience. After having been around the world a lot, my expectations were initially a bit low, but in the middle of the trip they were completely fulfilled by the friendliness of the people, the Nepalese culture and the incomparable beauty of the mountain ranges. I was also able to build up a very friendly relationship with my guide, in which we support each other, talk positively to each other and use every conceivable minute for the most diverse conversations.

Thank you for this experience and I will definitely be back!


Soren Dorfhoff


Island Peak, Everest Base Camp and Lobuche Peak Climbing (October 2022)

I have now used Everest Trekking Routes for two trips to Nepal. I can’t put my finger on anything that needs improvement. The initial communication part is spot on. They are quick to respond and I usually my questions answered on the first reply. Both times I have been greeted at the airport by a super polite guide. I’ve felt welcome and gotten all my needs tended to.
On my second trip, we could not fly to Lukla, because of bad weather. Instead of waiting for the weather to clear up, they arranged alternative transport to the mountains, to avoid wasting precious days in Kathmandu.

The whole city experience has been an absolute pleasure. Except for the hard work, summiting a mountain

Best recommendations to the guys from Everest Trekking Routes

Source: Tripadvisor


Hongkong, China

EBC + Island Peak Trek

A professional guide with passion brought us going to EBC, Kala Patthar and Island Peak Summit. He can manage all the matter letting us trek with no worry. There were three days no flight from Lukla back to Kathmandu due to bad weather, but we can still on schedule. Thanks for his help and made this trip memorable. He is Rabin Gurung.


Tift Lars


Mera Peak, Island Peak and Lobuche Peak Climbing

My brother and I had the pleasure of having Rabin as our guide on the trip to Mera Peak Expedition.
Everything was planned to perfection and we had a great time with Rabin, who is friendly, funny, and always helpful.
Last but not least, we reached the summit.

Source: TripAdvisor

Jasmin H


Gokyo Lakes with Gokyo Ri

The trekking was an extraordinary experience. Breathtaking views of Everest and the surrounding 8000s. Rabin Gurung always made sure we have a nice accommodation, enough for eating and drinking, warm and comfortable. He is a really caring guide. I would do another trip with him right away. He organised everything so that we could totally focus on the hiking.

Antonia Carol Suning

Sabah, Malaysia

Everest Base Camp & Lobuche Peak with Rabin

It was such a hard fight to join this trip. Because I had to work hard to find funding for this training. It is the first summit I attended team NOBAT ( No Boundary Adventurers Association Sabah ) to the Himalayas with AMG (Adventure Mountain Guide Rabin Gurung), I gained a great experience, which Mr. Rabin Gurung was very friendly and kind as a mountain guide who experience he made this trip so enjoyable, and build a better friendship.

I would like to thank him for giving the best service to us, this is the first time I walk for 21 days hahaha. In every step, he remained faithful to accompany and not leave us, even though there are 2 people in our group who did not succeed, and he sent us back to our high camp Lobuche to support the spirit reaching the summit of Lobuche Peak Climbing.

Nice trip and good services such as tents, food, and stories you tell about your family, it is good, and I enjoyed the trip because you protected me and my team so much.

Keep up the good work you AMG! I am happy to see and to know you! Good luck! * extra bonus able to speak Bahasa Melayu! hehe

Jasen Moore & Helen Kerrandjas

Toronto, Canada

Annapurna Base Camp Trek

While Rabin is a very knowledgeable and cabable guide it was his kindness, Warm smile, and Constant eagernessto help that made our trip truly memorable. Rabin quickly earned our trust and friendship and would be an exlcellent campanion on any trek ! we would very happily Recommend Rabin to any one who is making a trip in Nepal. He is is a wonderful person, and a good friend.

Email :
Details Address : 191 Millwood Rd, Upper Toronto, ON M4S 1J6 Canada

Jaistin Tamin

Sabah Malaysia

Everest Base Camp, Island Peak, Lobuche Peak & Chulu West Peak

Sewaktu saya ditugaskan oleh persatuan NOBAT untuk mendapatkan khidmat ‘trekking guide’ bagi ekspedisi NOBAT Himalaya 2013, saya telah menghubungi beberapa ‘trekking agent’ di Kathmandu melalui emel. Saya tertarik dengan laman web Rabin Gurung dan ‘testimonial’ dari beberapa individu yang penat mendapatkan khidmatnya. Rabin memberikan tawaran kos yang paling berpatutan. Dari raut wajahnya saja saya yakin dia adalah orang yang jujur dan’friendly’. Satu kelebihan lain ialah dia boleh berbahasa Malaysia.

Apabila bertemu dengan Rabin buat pertama kalinya di Kathmandu, memang sah bahawa kami telah membuat pilihan yang tepat. Sepanjang trekking, Rabin sangat professional dalam khidmatnya. Beliau flexible dan mudah diajak berunding. Kami tidak lagi menganggapnya sebagai pemandu jalan tetapi sebagai sahabat..kepada sesiapa yang ingin trekking di Himalaya, sila dapatkan khidmat Rabin. Saya percaya anda bakal membuat pilihan yang tepat.

Amy Cheung

Hongkong, China

Island Peak Climbing Via Everest Base Camp

I’m so grateful that I finally finished the trekking, and this must be credit to our professional guide, Rabin! He is so nice! He cared us so much, greeted us with his big warming smile during the whole journey! Before this trekking, the highest place I had ever been was only 934 meters, I was so worried about high altitude problem. But In fact, my adaptability was pretty good, cuz Rabin’s trekking plan was so suitable for me that I finally reached EBC and Kala Pattar under the snow and strong winds! When we backed to Island Peak Base Camp after summit, he brought hot drinks and biscuits and waited for us on the way, that was so sweet and we were really really exhausted and hungry at that time, he just like an angle showed up to us!

It’s a great trekking journey and I really thanks Rabin’s guiding and accompany with us! We shared the precious moments on this journey!

Jan Erik & Camilla Hedborg


Helambu Circuit Trekking in Nepal

This is the second time that we go to Nepal, and both times Rabin has been our guide while trekking. First time we did a 4 day trek in the Annapurna region and the second time a 6 day trek in the Helambu region. We enjoyed both our treks very much and are so happy to have been able to trek with Rabin on both occasions, who is not only a knowledgeable and experienced guide, but also a very nice person and good company. Both of us a re happy to recommend you contacting Rabin if you are planning a trip to Nepal – whether you are going for a short hike or longer trip that needs more planning.

Email :

Jeff Tucker & Wanida Tucker


Manaslu Circuit & Tsum Valley with Rabin Gurung

Recently my wife and I visited Nepal for the eighteenth time and enjoyed a wonderful trek, one of the best treks ever, and this was largely due to our guide, Rabin Gurung (Trekking Guide in Nepal), with whom we also trekked around Manaslu in 2010.

If you come to Nepal with the idea of doing ‘your own trek’ with a small party, I highly recommend hiring Rabin. Not only does he have many years of experience but he is very honest and humble, so much so that one woman at a very basic lodge on our recent trek, impressed by his honesty, told my wife that “this man is a very good man, honest man, all other guide-man say lie to customers, say them that price is higher than the real price, so they can get more money.”

Rabin is always in good humor and friendly and gets along well with the local people and the porters too. Furthermore, his varied experience from his earlier years as a porter and cook helped to make him a better guide. I can’t remember how many times during our treks, when we stopped at a new or very basic lodge, or even at a tea house for lunch, when the owner’s cooking skills were at most primitive, Rabin tactfully volunteered to move into the kitchen and some amazingly delicious food would come out, made from the most simple ingredients.

Three years ago, in March of 2010, the Manaslu trek was not what it is now. Along the entire trek from Arughat (where we had to start walking), until we reached to Annapurna circuit route, there was at that time only a single lodge with what could be called a ‘menu’, and that was the one and only lodge in Sama village at that time. All other villages either had nothing but dal bhat and perhaps chapatis, or nothing to eat and no lodge at all. We had to camp some places, but when we could, we stayed in the simple lodges that existed and he often improved our diet by cooking foods that the proprietor did not know how to cook, sometimes even such a basic menu item as an omelet, to be rolled up inside a chapati for breakfast.

This year, again in March, we decided to return to the same area, with the desire to explore the newly opened valley of Tsum. This is a lovely, beautiful valley populated by some 4000 Tibetan people, who have lived for nearly a thousand years in that inaccessible ‘hidden valley’, connected by easy passes to Tibet but until not so many decades ago, without any reasonable connection to Nepal through the truly stupendous canyons of the lower section of the valley. Indeed, many inhabitants could not speak any Nepali, only Tibetan, which made it difficult at times. We had a double permit, which if you ever want to see Tsum Valley thoroughly, I highly recommend. Most people try to do a quick one-week detour to Tsum Valley as a kind of bonus side trip on the way around Manaslu. They never know what they have missed. Some of the most interesting villages and friendliest people, and some truly awesome scenery, can be visited in Tsum valley if you have time. One week is too little time to see more than a quick glimpse of the Valley.

I and my wife have been trekking in Nepal for years, myself since 1981, and our trek to Manaslu was the first time we had ever used a guide (because it was required on that trek), despite having visited some very remote areas such as crossing the Trashi Labtsa Pass from Khumbu into Rolwaling with friends in 1982. I had doubts about using a guide, I had seen how so many of them control their clients and take a commission from lodge owners to fill their pockets, I have seen many guides from Kathmandu who knew less about the local people and places than I did. I say this not to boast but as a word of caution: there are all too few honest, humble, helpful, and experienced guides out there, and many of those who are have moved into the higher levels of trekking management and no longer guide. But from the first days, on our 2010 Manaslu trek, we were impressed by the level of experience Rabin has, and also his sensitivity in allowing us to make our own itinerary day by day. He never was angry, never showed irritation, always explained patiently what was going on, and was always in a good mood. We were a group of five at that time, and by the end of the first week, we all agreed that if we returned to Nepal for another trek requiring a guide, we would try to get Rabin again.

This is what we did in March 2013 on our visit to Tsum Valley. Using more porters in order to have tents and extra food, we planned to visit the highest area of the upper end of Tsum Valley and ascend to one of the high passes overlooking Tibet. This year was plagued by poor weather and too much snow in March, however, and we were unable to do that, as were all the people who had set out to trek around Manaslu this March: the deep snow at higher elevations did not allow anyone in the first weeks of March to cross the Larkya La and go around Manaslu. But we had time, and because of the tents and food we had, we also had more options. The tents and food we used in a wonderful visit to the nunnery at Gumalungdang, up a steep side valley surrounded by the huge peaks of Ganesh Himal. We camped there for two nights, as there is no accommodation yet, and enjoyed incredible sunrise views of the nearby Ganesh Himal and also the distant great Peaks of HImalchuli, Ngadi Chuli, and Manaslu.

Tsum Valley is developing rapidly, as is the Manaslu circuit. However, particularly if you are new to Nepal trekking, don’t believe the hype that many agencies will tell you, that the Manaslu trek is the “new Annapurna circuit”. The Annapurna trek, over a period of three decades, developed a huge infrastructure for trekkers, with scores and scores of hotels, often equipped with deluxe menus and services, hot showers, laundry service, spring mattresses, etc. I think it will be some time yet before these things appear on the Manaslu trek, and if you find them in some places, don’t expect them at the next place. Tsum Valley is one step back in development yet.

One problem to watch out for is this: Manaslu Tsum Valley’s popularity and this can be said for Manaslu too, is growing much faster than services can be built–may be large because the road around Annapurna has grown so quickly and has put people off from that once glorious trek. We were there both times in March when there are fewer trekkers than in April or especially during the high season in October and November. In Tsum, as of March 2013, there was only one real lodge with rooms, and that was just a bit beyond Lokhpa at the foot of the valley. The other ‘lodges’ were basically beds in a side room of a local house, the largest such able to sleep ten people but others only four or five. Most villages had only one such place for trekkers to sleep, some villages had no place. When we reached Mu Gompa, in March all but one of the 80 monks were away from the valley for the winter, and furthermore, there was no food available at all. Only because we had our tents and stove and food for going higher up the valley (which we were unable to do because of snow), were we able to stay there e and eat our own food, instead of returning to Nile village the same day. The same goes for Gumbalunddang, where no food was available. if you are going o visit Tsum valley, and perhaps Manaslu too, during the busiest season, think seriously about hiring at least one EXTRA porter and having a tent, stove, and food, in case of accommodation is full! It might be worth it! Also, think of the porters: we saw many groups of two or three with a guide and a single porter carrying an enormous load, who was trailing far behind the others during the day. Many of them were unhappy with the arrangement.

In conclusion, this time with four people in our group, and with several porters and with Rabin as our guide again, we once more enjoyed what all agreed was one of the best treks we’ve ever done in the Himalayas, out of a total number of over thirty now, in Nepal and India. Rabin is an excellent choice for a guide. He is honest and will help you save money instead of trying to find ways to squeeze more for himself, he is fun and funny and friendly and all along the trails, he makes new friends with the people we meet along the way. He is experienced but doesn’t try to tell the customers what to do, he asks what they want to do, and then explains the options. If you are the type of trekker who is truly interested in Nepal, in the places, the culture, and religion and people and villages, and like to understand what is happening around you, hire Rabin as your guide, you won’t be disappointed. Indeed, like us (except for one, the same group that went around Manaslu with Rabin three years earlier), perhaps you will want to return to Nepal and go on another trek with Rabin Gurung!


Alex Lim


Everest Base Camp and Annapurna Base Camp Trek with Rabin Gurung

This is my second trip with Rabin and I am already looking forward to a third trip with him soon. That shows how much I value his services, his extensive experiences with the treks, his honesty, and of course, the great supporting staff he have.

I feel safe and well taken care of with Rabin as my guide. He is a man with integrity and deal in a most honest way with us. This is unlike lots of horror stories you read about guides and tea-house owners collaborating to fleece hikers. We pay exactly what we consumed at the tea houses based on the published menu prices, no more and no less. With Rabin, there is no hidden cost.

With more than 20 years of trekking experience, he gave good advises on the route and safety measures to take. For example, he insisted that we started off early on a particular day so that we will reach a section with an ice sheet before the ice started to melt and traversing the ice-sheet becomes dangerous and difficult.

We have a large team of porters and assistant guides to take care of our team of 12 hikers and everyone on Rabin’s team have been extremely helpful and friendly. My teenage son enjoyed playing Uno and sliding down the ABC  Trek icy slope with a teenage porter, a fellow hiker who has walking difficulties was supported all the way by assistant guides and porters and our meals were all ordered in advance so the group don’t have to wait long for food to be served.


Sources from: TripAdvisor

Rechard Boston

California, U. S. A.

Annapurna Circuit Thorong La Pass Trek

After reading online reviews we contacted Rabin and several other “Trekking companies” inquiring about trekking the Annapurna Circuit. This was our first visit to Nepal so we were a little apprehensive about selecting a guide via web endorsements and email. After receiving several quotes and descriptions of the trek we focused on Adventure Guides. I had done some research on where to stay in Kathmandu and when I asked Rabin where he recommended he suggested The International Guest House. The very same place i was interested in. He met us at the airport and had a vehicle to take us to the hotel. Rabin and porter Suk were great to travel with. They took care of all the tedious details so that we could enjoy Nepal and the trek. It was a fabulous journey and we are planning to come back next year and trek with Rabin. Visited October 2016

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