Annapurna circuit trek was opened around 1979 and from that time till the day several tourists flock to this destination. This was and still is favorite trekking destination in Nepal for many new and pro trekkers in the world. What makes this trek so special? In matter of days this trek takes you from subtropical forest zone to alpine zone and matter of fact, to one of the highest man walkable passes. This treks makes one huge circle of the Annapurna mountain and on the other side of the mountain lies 2 beautiful districts of Manang and Mustang. These districts fall in the rain shadows of the high mountains and are deserted and resembles to the landscape of Tibetan plateau. Only one who walks the trails of this very trek experiences the culture of these places, which is hidden from the eyes of the world.
You will begin this trek from a small hill station of Besisahar, but however, in time crunch you could as well drive up to Chame and begin your trek. Nevertheless, the classic circuit lasts for around 20 days and begins from the primary location mentioned. Immediately after you begin your trek, in no days, you will start seeing beautiful landscapes, barren cliffs, snow clad mountains and several indigenous villages. Furthermore, you will begin noticing the culture from Pisang and beyond. The culture of Manang and Mustang are known to be around 1500 years old and even till the day practices can be seen. You will also realize that life up here is difficult and yet people find happiness. Moving on, a lot of travellers opt for this trel to put their limits to test by climbing to the summit of Thorung La pass. Thorung La, at 5416 meters, is one of the highest man walkable passes in the world as well as one of the most rewarding view points in the Annapurna.
Towards the end of Annapurna circuit trek you will get a glimpse of one of the most beautiful districts of Mustang. Part of upper Mustang is still a restricted area which is to protect the fragile ecosystem. The very part of Mustang you will experience is inclusive of one of the highest regarded pilgrimages of Muktinath, beautiful village of Kagbeni in the confluence of Kali Gandaki river and a small town of Jomsom. Fortunate are the ones who walk this trail because you will not only see the 2 highest mountains in the planet but also the deepest gorge and the 2nd largest waterfall in the country. However, our favourite part of the trek is on the last day, in Tatopani. Tatopani is a small village by the banks of Kali Gandaki river and Tatopani means hot water. The name comes from the natural hot water spring in the village which is one of the best, crystal clear, hot water springs one can be in. And, there are none who wouldn’t like to wear off their exhaustion by dipping their bodies for hours and hours in this soothing hot water.
Annapurna circuit trek nicely packs adventure, altitude, culture and biodiversity and hence, these are few of the many reasons which makes this trek one of its kind and heartthrob of many.