The Annapurna region is classified by many to be the most diverse and most sought-after trekking trail in the world. Trekking in the intricate Annapurna region combines some of the jaw-dropping mountains like the Machhapuchhre (6997m) and Annapurna (8091m) along with the Tibetan culture. A variety of landscape in the Annapurna region takes travellers to the heavenly abode carved by the roaring Kali Gandaki River.
Another major attribute that attracts tourists to dwell in these marvellous lands is its easy accessibility and well-maintained trails. This region attracts trekkers and hikers from across the globe. There is also an abundance of teahouses and stopping points here so taking it slow can be a good option. You can arrange trips that span as long as 3 weeks to ones as short as 3 days all of which focus on the Annapurna region. From long treks like Upper Mustang Trek and Annapurna Circuit Trek to short treks like Mardi Himal Trek and Ghorepani Poonhill Trek, there are several options.
One thing that the long and short treks have in common is that you’ll always be accompanied by the gorgeous display of Annapurna and Dhaulagiri mountains. Likewise, you’ll always get to interact with the local people residing in its wilderness. Now let’s shed some light on the most explored short Annapurna treks that can be conducted in the wild Annapurna.
Annapurna South (7,219m)
Ghorepani Poonhill Trek
Poon Hill (3,210m)
The Ghorepani Poonhill Trek is one of the popular treks that takes place in the Annapurna region. The trek starts from Nayapul and heads north with views of Annapurna South (719m) and Hiunchuli (6441m). As you walk in the dense rhododendron forests, Ghorepani village welcomes you with its open arms. The next morning sees you climb the magnificent vantage point at Poon Hill (3210 meters) from which you'll feast on the sight of Nilgiri, Dhaulagiri, Annapurna, and Lamjung Himal ranges. Slowly descend to Ghandruk where the delicious Gurung cuisine will astonish you. Learn culture and tradition at the Gurung museum and then navigate back to Nayapul and head to Pokhara where this trip shall end. This is a budget trek and can be completed in 10 days at USD 630.
Dhampus Sarangkot Trek
View from Sarangkot
The Dhampus Sarangkot trek aims to take you on a spiritual and natural journey that connects the hill stations of Dhampus and Sarangkot. Your journey takes you on a cruise down the Prithivi Highway and after relaxing in Pokhara, you’ll hit the road to Phedi. Make your way through cultivated fields and Gurung settlements. The trail gives way to the amazing display of Manaslu and Annapurna. Walk for 5 hours to reach Naudanda and then climb steep stairs to arrive at the vantage point of Sarangkot. This is the best place near Pokhara to marvel at the glory of snow laded peaks like Annapurna (8091m) and Machhapuchhre (6997m). This short yet adventurous journey spans for 8 days and can be done at the cost of USD 510.
Mardi Himal Trek
View from Badal Danda
Mardi Himal Trek is for the travellers willing to encapsulate the entirety of the Annapurna region. The picturesque trail takes you initially through Pokhara and then the road traverses from Phedi towards low camp. The trail is dreamy in the sense that it is filled with blooming rhododendrons. There aren’t human settlements along the trails which are filled with mesmerizing rhododendron forests. As we move past High Camp, we find ourselves in the highest elevation point at 4250 meters. The view of mountains including Barha Shikhar, Tent Peak, and Macchapucchre is simply stunning. To conquer this trail, you need to have strong physical conditions as you need to walk for at least 5 hours a day. This trekking experience comes with a price tag of USD 899 and can be done in 12 days.
Jomsom Muktinath Trek
For travellers that need something desolate and ethereal, the Jomsom Muktinath trek fulfils their craving. Set on the rain shadow area of the Annapurna region, this trek commences from Tikhedhunga and takes you through the many small Gurung, Magar, and Thakali villages. You’ll need to walk for at least 5 hours a day and as you move forward, the landscape transforms from green ones to the arid desert-like landscape. Trek along the Kali Gandaki River and reach Marpha before heading towards Jomsom. As you battle the winds, you arrive at the holiest temple in this region, ‘Muktinath’. You can see a large number of devotees here praying to Lord Vishnu. Admire the sight of Annapurna massif and fly back to Pokhara. This trip comes with a price tag of USD 1099 and can be completed in 14 days.
Khopra Danda Trek
Dhaulagiri from Muldhe Viewpoint
The Khopra Danda Trek is a recently nurtured trail that takes you away from the major Annapurna trails and deep into the untouched terrain of Khopra. The trail offers surreal views of the residing peaks of the Annapurna region which include Annapurna (8091m), Dhaulagiri (8167m), and Machhapuchhre (6997m). The road takes you along the Gurung settlement of Ghandruk where you’ll observe the past of Gurung people. The major highlight of this trek is the Khopra ridge from where you can see the Annapurna South (7219m) and do take a tour at the holy Khayer Lake. Exploring the forested trails and learning the culture of Gurung inhabitants on the Khopra Danda Trek. The trek commands you to walk for 5 hours a day and lasts for 14 days for USD 899.
Mohare Danda Trek
Mohare Danda Trail
The Mohare Danda Trek that takes you to the tranquil off-beaten paths in the foothills of Annapurna. This trekking trail is recently discovered and there is much more to it. The trail takes you on a whirlwind of a journey that takes you through Pokhara and along the banks of the Kali Gandaki River. As you move ahead, you can catch immense views of the Annapurna massif. On average, the trail commands you to walk for 5 hours a day. Finally, we arrive at the summit of the Mohare Danda at 3300 meters. Also, it is a great vantage point to witness the panorama of Annapurna and Dhaulagiri ranges. We make our way back through the Gurung village Ghandruk, and after crossing several small settlements to reach Nayapul. This 11-day trek costs USD 820.
Trekking in the Annapurna region has never been more popular. As such, there is a variety of choices for the treks in this region based on duration and difficulty. The availability of excellent trails and teahouses have made it even more popular. If you are in search of a quick getaway or are willing to experience the glamour of nature, then you should choose to scout the Annapurna region.