The Manaslu circuit trek is a restricted trekking area with tea houses and Annapurna circuit trek is a normal tea house trek which was developed earlier than Manaslu. These two different trekking trails can give different experiences as trekking in the special area with less traffic and trekking in the normal area with more traffic. So before planning a trek among them can make a clear decision which one is suitable to do.
Annapurna circuit trek is a popular, regular, easier and less challenging trail. There are thousands of trekkers every year. These factors Annapurna circuit trek invites vast numbers of trekkers from all around the world who would like to have experience amazing Annapurna region. Annapurna is a developed trekking route.
In the interim, Manaslu Circuit is less popular and a new trekking trail of Nepal. But it is not mean that is not nice to visit. This trek is popular among them who want to have a remote experience of Nepal which is untouched by high civilization and not to trek with the crowd. So this trek is a really good one to have an adventure experience with a typical lifestyle.
The things to remember about Manaslu circuit VS Annapurna circuit trek are both have high passes as (Thorong La and Larke La), wonderful trekking trails and scenic Himalaya. Annapurna circuit trek can make without a partner so individual trekker may do it but Manaslu circuit must have to have a guide and at least 2 person having a special trekking authorization permit. This restriction is to protect the natural environment and culture of the area.
The trail after the Larke pass
Difference Between Manaslu Circuit and Annapurna Circuit
|Name||Annapurna Circuit||Manaslu Circuit|
|Trek Duration||12-17 Days||12-16 Days|
|Best Time to Trek||September-November and March-May||September-November and March-May|
|Trek Type||Lodge to Lodge||Lodge to Lodge|
|Mode of Transportation||Public Bus/Private Jeep/Flight||Public Bus/Private Jeep|
|Permits||Annapurna Conservation Area Permit and TIMS card||Annapurna Conservation Area permit, Manaslu Conservation Area Permit, Special restricted area permit|
Annapurna Circuit Trek in Autumn Season
The autumn is the main season for Annapurna circuit trek. It is a highly recommended trekking season for Nepal. There are a lot of trekkers during this season so the trails and places will have crowed. The temperature is perfect until October and starts cold from November. There are fewer chances of rainfall so the view is extremely clear most of the days.
The temperature is perfect and the sky is nice and blue so this season is very nice to see snow-capped mountains and other variations of attractions. View of massive Annapurna III, IV, II and other many peaks before the pass and Dhaulagiri, Annapurna I and other mountains after the pass are incredible with clear visibility.
Manaslu Circuit Trek in Autumn Season
Trekking in autumn to the Manaslu circuit is an ideal season. The price for the restricted permit goes up because there are many visitors during this season. Same as doing a trek to the Annapurna, the weather, temperature, and visibilities are same here too. But the numbers of the trekkers are fewer than Annapurna in this trekking trail.
Annapurna Circuit Trek in Winter Season
The winter season is the coldest season in Nepal which starts from December and stay until February. Adventure treks to the high altitude and visiting the base camps are not recommended during this season but there are some short and easy trekking routes for this season in Nepal. The temperature in the higher lands, fall to the minus degrees during the night and morning. With heavy snowfall during this season, the Throng la pass may be blocked so it is normally impossible to do this trek during the winter season.
Manaslu Circuit Trek in Winter Season
The Manaslu circuit trek is also an adventure trek with a high pass (Larke) so same things happen in this trekking trail also as Annapurna. Trekking in this season to the Manaslu is even more difficult and dangerous because the pass is even difficult than Throng la. With heavy snowfall, the trail covers and make risky. The lodges in this region are very normal and small so most of the places, lodges are close so it is not a smart idea to choose this season to do a trek to Manaslu circuit.
Annapurna Circuit Trek in Spring Season
The spring is the second popular trekking season in Nepal. This is the main season for the expedition to the high mountains. The temperature is warmer and the weather is clearer during this season. This season offers clear visibility of the white mountains, hills and the landscapes but visibility from a far distance is not same as autumn. This is dry season and lowers in the valleys will be hazy.
While trekking to the Annapurna circuit in this season, supplies a great view of the mountains and much more attractions with affordable temperature. Blooming colourful rhododendron and sounds of spring birds among the trekking trail makes wonderful.
Manaslu Circuit Trek in Spring Season
Doing Manaslu circuit trek in spring is perfect. The warm temperature and clear weather make the worth of the journey during this season. It is not very cold but at the starting for a few days may be very hot because starting areas are sub-tropical lands. As Annapurna circuit, there are blooming rhododendrons and other colourful flowers make the trail beautiful. Encountering with wild animals like blue sheep, marmot, and others provide more energy to walk to the trekkers.
Annapurna Circuit Trek in Monsoon
The monsoon is not a good season for trekking in Nepal. It rains almost every day and high humidity. The rain makes wet floor so it will be slippery and dangerous some parts of the trail. The rivers along the way will be big and have the chances of landslides. The clouds may cover the mountains but other views are still good to see. But some days for a while, the mountains can be seen. If people don’t like to trek having big traffic of the trekkers and enjoy green nature, this season can be choose able to them. The lodges are open everywhere on the way of Annapurna.
Manaslu Circuit Trek in Monsoon
The monsoon in Nepal remains normally 3 months from June to August but still, it may rain till the first week of September in some years. Same as Annapurna, Manaslu circuit also is not recommended in this season with a similar problem faced. The problem of leeches and mosquitoes has to face along the way of the trek in this time.
Lodge and Food in Annapurna Circuit Trek
Facilities of the lodges are well managed in the Annapurna circuit trek so trekkers may have a private room everywhere. There are hot shower available in every place and have attached bathrooms in some places. This is a like backpacking trekking trails with so many backpackers. Cost of the accommodation is a little cheaper than Manaslu in this trekking area.
The foods are cocked by basic trained cooks most of the places and may choose from the food menu everywhere. Bakery items in Manang are nice to try. There are safe drinking water stations to buy safe water which is refilled and also available mineral bottled water.
Lodge and Food in Manaslu Circuit Trek
The Manaslu circuit route is new than Annapurna so the facilities of the lodges everywhere are lesser quality than Annapurna. This is a special trekking region so not backpackers are found on this trail. There is no chance of bargaining for the room cost so they are fixed and competitively expensive than Annapurna. Fewer places have proper hot showers so most places they provide a hot bucket for a hot bath. There is a lack of quilts in the higher area so having a good quality of the sleeping bag is highly recommended.
Also, the food menus are available in this trekking and cocked by basically trained persons. People sell bottled water and boiled water in the lodges or can use normal water using purification tablets or drops along the way.
Altitude Sickness during the Treks
Altitude sickness can kill people. This is a common problem on the higher elevation in the Nepalese Himalayas. But it happens rarely only some people. Both treks start from a lower elevation and gradual ascent to the higher area so trekkers may be well acclimatized. But people may feel altitude above 3000 meters because of high atmospheric pressure and low oxygen. Especially during the high passes like Throng la and Larke la are difficult with this problem. Drinking more water, walk slow and keep warm prevent the problem and must have to descend if a problem found.
Annapurna Circuit Trek Cost
The cost of the trek depends on a service type. Hiring a guide and porter may cost cheaper than full board but in the end, only hiring a guide and porter becomes expensive than full board booking through a company. Normally group trek cost less than private small group or individual. It cost 600$-1200$ for Annapurna circuit trek.
Manaslu Circuit Trek Cost
Somehow, the cost for the Manaslu circuit is a bit expensive than Annapurna because of the special trekking authorization permit and conservation permits. But other services cost the same as Annapurna. In some case, it may cheaper because of shorter itinerary and at least need to be 2 people for the trek so the salary of the guide and porter may share between two persons. It cost 700$-1100$ for the Manaslu circuit trek.
Permits Required For the Treks
|Annapurna Circuit Trek||Manaslu Circuit Trek|
- Annapurna Conservation Area Permit: 3000 NPR
- Trekkers Information Management System Card (TIMS): 1000 NPR with a company and 2000 NPR for Free Individual Trekkers
- Manaslu Conservation Area Permit: 3000 NPR
- Annapurna Conservation Area Permit: 3000 NPR.
- Manaslu Special trekking permit 70$ for a week than 10$ additional per day during autumn (September-November) season and 50$ for a week than 7$ per day additional rest of the months.
The Annapurna and Manaslu, both circuit treks are adventure treks with high passes. These are quite popular trekking routes for the adventure trekking lovers. With the above information, trekkers may figure out their nice which one is fitted and demanding.
Both treks are beautiful and demanding treks having their verities. While Annapurna is regular, popular and older than Manaslu but trekking with less traffic, Manaslu is one of the best options.