Annapurna with Tilicho Lake Trek - 17 Days

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Trek in the famous Annapurna region and to Tilicho Lake, tour heritage sites and cross mountain pass
Destination: Nepal Trip Cost: $2290 USD
Group size: 1-12 people Max-Altitude: 5,416m/17,764ft
Arrival on: Kathmandu, Nepal Departure from: Kathmandu, Nepal
Meals: Breakfast in Kathmandu and Pokhara. All meals during the trek
Accommodation: 3-star hotels in Kathmandu and Pokhara. Teahouses during the trek

Trip Introduction

Annapurna with Tilicho Lake Trek is a fantastic journey along the famous Annapurna region and to Tilicho Lake (4949m), one of the highest lakes in the world. The trail cuts through varied elevations, and has climates ranging from semi-tropical to  desert, and with the landscapes varying from sub-tropical to alpine forests to snowy barren, and the stunning rocky Thorongla mountain pass with an altitude of  5416 meters. The trip begins in Kathmandu with visits to several cultural heritage sites. Next, drive to Chamje and begin the trek from Dharapani. The 17-day Annapurna with Tilicho Lake Trek concludes in Jomson after which you will fly to Pokhara, followed by another flight to Kathmandu.

This is a 17-day trek best for trekkers willing to not just walk on the Annapurna circle trail but also reach the serene Tilicho Lake. However, for trekkers who prefer a shorter trek in mostly the same route then Annapurna Circle Trek - 14 Days is ideal. Another option for trekkers who want to circle the Annapurna massif Annapurna Circuit Trek - 21 Days would be best.

Day to Day Itinerary

Day 01: Arrival in Kathmandu (1,300m/4,264 ft)

Upon our arrival in the Tribhuwan International Airport (TIA) in Kathmandu, we will be greeted by a representative from Himalayan Glacier who will drop us off at our hotel. After checking in, we take a rest or visit Himalayan Glacier’s office. We may also stroll in the streets of Thamel, a tourist hub in Kathmandu for some souvenir shopping. In the evening, there will be a welcome dinner hosted by Himalayan Glacier. For dinner, you will be served excellent authentic Nepalese cuisine which will introduce you to the Nepalese food culture.

Included meals:B
Day 02: Kathmandu Sightseeing and trek preparation
Today after breakfast we start a guided tour to several of the most historical and spiritual attractions in Kathmandu. Some of these landmarks are considered World Heritage Sites including the historic Durbar Square, the sacred Hindu temple of Pashupatinath, the famous 'Monkey Temple' (Swayambhunath) and Buddhist shrine (Bouddhanath) which is one of the largest stupas in the world. At noon, there will be a pre-trip discussion where we can meet our trek leader and other team members. Himalayan Glacier briefs us regarding our trek as well as provides us an opportunity to ask any questions we may have regarding our upcoming adventure. Overnight in Kathmandu.

Included meals:B
Day 03: Drive to Chamje (1,410m/4,626ft): 6-7 hours

Starting the day early for the trek would be a good idea; we will travel by road from Kathmandu to Chamje village which will be the starting point of the trek. Chamje is a small village in the Annapurna Region at an elevation of 1430 m. There is a waterfall which is an attraction for both locals and tourists alike. The beautiful greenery all around will fuel us for the trek ahead. Overnight in Chamje. 

Included meals:BLD
Day 04: Trek from Chamje to Dharapani (1,960m/6,430ft): 5 - 6 hours

We begin the trek early in the morning. The trail takes us through various vegetable plantations, waterfalls and mixed communities that are believed to have migrated from Tibet.  After crossing the suspension bridge below Chamje and climbing two steep sections, we reach the village of Tal. From Tal, we enter the Manang district. On the way we also pass through Kodo village and walk on the trail that rises and falls and cuts across a mountain side to one of the biggest villages in the Manang district, Dharapani.  Overnight in Dharapani. 

Included meals:BLD
Day 05: Dharapani to Chame (2,710m/8,891ft): 5 - 6 hours

Today we negotiate a few steep, forested ridges along with several landslides on route to Chame. We should not forget to look up though, as we will be greeted with remarkable views of Lamjung Himal, Annapurna II, and Annapurna IV (7,525m). We also come across small hot springs which will be a sweet respite from the tiring trek and help us relax for a while. Chame is the headquarters of Manang District in the Gandaki Zone of northern Nepal Overnight in Chame.

Included meals:BLD
Day 06: Chame to Pisang (3,300m/10824ft): 5 - 6 hours

Today the trail continues up and down, passing several rivers and sparsely populated settlements. We walk through a steep and narrow valley to have our first view of Paungda Danda rock face, a dramatic curved rock face rising 1500 m from the river. From here, we also gain excellent views of Annapurna 2 to the south and Pisang Peak to the north east. We descend to the Manang Valley floor enjoying the captivating landscape. Overnight in Pisang

Included meals:BLD
Day 07:  Pisang to Manang (3,500m/11,482ft): 6 - 7 hours

From Pisang there are two routes to Manang. We choose the one which passes through Upper Pisang via Geru as it guarantees outstanding views of Mt. Annapurna, Pisang Peak, and others. As we near Manang, the climate becomes colder and drier. However, a short visit to Barge Monastery, the biggest monastery in the Manang District, should cheer us up. Overnight in Manang.

Included meals:BLD
Day 08: Manang to Khangsar (3745m/12286ft): 2-3 hours

After breakfast our trek continues up to the village of Khangsar. As we walk ahead, the trail cuts down through a gorge and the Tilicho Peak can be spotted shrouded in clouds far above.  We get to appreciate the natural beauty of the Annapurna range all along the way. We also pass through small scenic settlements and the Tore monastery and get to enjoy the breathtaking Khangsar River and the grand barrier before reaching Khangsar. Overnight in Khangsar. 


Included meals:BLD
Day 09: Khangsar to Tilicho Base Camp (4140m/13,583ft): 5-6 hours

As we begin the trek from Kangsar to Tilicho Lake Base Camp, we come across wide grassy fields and, after making a slight climb up a small hill, witness the glorious views of the entire valley. After trudging down a steep inclination, you now enter the Tilicho Base Camp. Camping is the only option as there are not many lodges out here. Overnight at Tilicho Base Camp. 


Included meals:BLD
Day 10: Visit Tilicho Lake (4,949m/16,138 ft) then trek back to base camp: 5-6 hours

After the initial tough ascent, our trail traverses onto a moraine and then cuts along the side of the mountain. However, the spectacular views of Tilicho, Nilgiri, Khangsar and Muktinath peaks are always close by to cheer us up. Upon reaching Tilicho Lake, one of the highest lakes in the world, we get to admire its tranquil beauty. Sometimes reflections of the surrounding peaks are seen on its turquoise waters, at other times the lake remains frozen. We take a break beside the calm waters and soak-in the astounding views before heading back to the base camp. Overnight in Tilicho Base Camp. 


Included meals:BLD
Day 11:  Tilicho Base Camp to Yak Kharka (4040m/13,020ft): 4-5 hours

When returning from the Tilicho Base Camp, the trail leads out of the Marsyangdi valley and the abrupt change in surroundings can be noticed as the trees are left behind and replaced with more alpine vegetation. Our trail continues through the ruins of the old Khangsar village, until we cross a log bridge over the river between Gumsang and Yak Kharka. The typical Himalayan village of Yak Kharka is an accolade to its name, as lots of yaks can be seen grazing and standing around. From here we also get breathtaking views of Annapurna III. Overnight in Yak Kharka. 


Included meals:BLD
Day 12: Yak kharka to Thorang Phedi: (4420m/14501ft): 3-4 hours

It is an uphill walk to Thorang Phedi. After walking for some time, we cross a suspension bridge and reach Ledar village. We ascend further and pass through towering cliffs before reaching Thorang Phedi, the last village before Thorong La pass.  On this trip we are rewarded with one of the best views of Mt. Gundang, Mt. Syagang, Thorung Peak and Mt. Khatungkan. The word Phedi in Nepalese is referred to as the foot of a mountain. Overnight in Thorang Phedi.


Included meals:BLD
Day 13: Thorong Phedi to Muktinath (3,800m/12,467ft) via Thorong La pass (5416m/17764ft): 7 - 8 hours

Crossing Thorong La pass, one of the highest passes in the world, will be our ultimate objective today. We will be crossing the pass from east to west (Manang to Muktinath) which is the easiest and safest direction. We get up around three in the morning and walk up the mountain. When we finally make it to the top, we realize that our journey was worth it. We can take a few photos before heading to Muktinath Valley at the foot of the Thorong La pass. Overnight in Muktinath.

Included meals:BLD
Day 14: Muktinath to Jomsom (2,715m/8,910ft): 5-6 hours

Muktinath, an ultimate destination for Hindu and Buddhist pilgrims, is a beautiful place. We visit the Muktinath Temple before embarking on the trek ahead. There are water spouts where fresh water pours out channeled from the streams above the temple. As the trail extends we can enjoy the magnificent views of Mt. Dhaulagiri. You can even buy a fossilized mollusk, called ‘Shaligram’ as a memento. We move ahead among meadows, cross streams and hills over to Kagbeni, a village laden with chortens (memorial stupas) and a small monastery. Continue the trek after a lunch break at Kagbeni and over to Jomsom on the Kali Gandaki Valley as the trail cuts through windy areas. Overnight in Jomsom. 

Included meals:BLD
Day 15: Fly from Jomsom to Pokhara (823m/2,700ft): 30mins

We fly to Pokhara after breakfast. The flight itself is spectacular; we fly while looking at views of the Annapurna and Dhaulagiri ranges and over the deepest gorge in the world. The warmer climate in Pokhara will definitely make us feel better. We can take a boat ride in the serene waters of the lake with the reflection of the Fishtail Mountain on its waters. We could also visit the Davis falls. In the evening, we can stroll around the lakeside area and buy souvenirs for loved ones. Overnight in Pokhara.

Included meals:B
Day 16: Fly from Pokhara to Kathmandu: 30mins

Another short flight takes you back to Kathmandu, the capital of Nepal. We can take a rest in our hotel room and spend the rest of day in leisure. In the evening, there will be a farewell dinner hosted by Himalayan Glacier to celebrate the successful completion of our journey. Overnight in Kathmandu. 

Included meals:BD
Day 17: Final departure

Our representative will take us to Tribhuwan International Airport for our next flight, approximately 3 hours earlier than the scheduled time.


Included meals:B

Important Note

Your safety is of paramount concern while traveling with Himalayan Glacier. Please note that your leader has the authority to amend or cancel any part of the itinerary if it is deemed necessary due to safety concerns. Every effort will be made to keep to the above itinerary; however, since this adventure entails travelling in remote mountainous regions, we cannot guarantee that we will not deviate from it. Weather conditions, health condition of a group member, unexpected natural disasters, etc., can all contribute to changes in the itinerary. The leader will try to ensure that the trip runs according to plan, but please be prepared to be flexible if required.

Included in the Cost

  • Airport pickups and drops ina private vehicle
  • 3-star hotel accommodation in Kathmandu and Pokhara with breakfast
  • Teahouse accommodation during the trek
  • All meals (breakfast, lunch and dinner) during the trek
  • Welcome and farewell dinners
  • All ground transportation on a comfortable private vehicle as per the itinerary
  • Domestic flights from Jomsom to Pokhara and from Pokhara to Kathmandu
  • Guided city tour in Kathmandu by private vehicle
  • Entrance fees for sightseeing/monument visits as per the itinerary
  • An experienced, English-speaking and government-licensed trek leader and assistant trek leader (4 trekkers: 1 assistant guide)
  • Porter service (2 trekkers: 1 porter)
  • Staff costs including their salary, insurance, equipment, food and accommodation
  • Down jacket and sleeping bag  (to be returned after trip completion)
  • Himalayan Glacier’s trekking bag/duffel bag, t-shirt and trekking map are yours to take
  • All necessary paperwork and trekking permits (ACAP, TIMS)
  • Medical kit (carried by your trek leader)
  • All government and local taxes

Not Included in the Cost

  • Nepalese visa fee 
  • Excess baggage charge(s)
  • Private transportation except what is mentioned in the What Is Included section
  • Extra night accommodation in Kathmandu and Pokhara because of early arrival, late departure, early return from mountain (due to any reason) than the scheduled itinerary
  • Lunch and evening meals in Kathmandu and Pokhara (and also in the case of early return from the mountain than the scheduled itinerary)
  • International flights
  • Travel and rescue insurance
  • Personal expenses (phone calls, laundry, bar bills, battery recharge, extra porters, bottle or boiled water, shower, etc.)
  • Tips for guide(s), porter(s) and driver(s)

Travel Insurance

It is a condition upon joining any of Himalayan Glacier's trips that all clients be insured for comprehensive expenses that might incur due to medical issues or accidents (this includes air ambulance, helicopter rescue, and treatment costs). Please note that we don't arrange or sell insurance.

Accommodations

We will be staying at Hotel Moonlight in Kathmandu, Mt. Kailash Resort in Pokhara and teahouses (guesthouses) during the trek. All accommodations are on twin-shared basis. Single supplement will be served on request and will cost an additional USD 360. Himalayan Glacier will arrange rooms with attached washrooms; however, teahouses in some places only have shared washing and toilet facilities. Also note that single rooms are readily available in Kathmandu and the trekking regions at lower elevation but it might be difficult to find them at higher elevations.

Meals

During our Annapurna trek, we can enjoy authentic Nepalese food as well the more common international cuisine (Tibetan, Continental, Italian, Indian, etc.). Breakfast and dinner will be served from the teahouse or from a lodge menu where we spend the night whereas lunch will be served on the way to the next destination. All meals will be provided during trekking while only breakfast will be available while in Kathmandu and Pokhara. There will also be welcome and farewell dinners for guests.

Leader(s) & Staff Arrangements

The most significant thing that makes our Annapurna with Tilicho Lake Trek successful, enjoyable and memorable is the skilled, experienced, courteous and helpful trek leader and the crew members. Our trek will be led by only the best and most professional leaders. All of Himalayan Glacier's trekking leaders are carefully selected on the basis of their appropriate experience, leadership skills and personal aptitude. With an objective of sustaining local communities, Himalayan glacier only employs local staff who have adequate knowledge about culture, ecosystem, flora, fauna, geography, and history of their local region(s). The trek and expedition leaders have undergone the following trainings:

  • Intensive Wilderness First Aid
  • Trekking Guide Training
  • Eco Trekking Workshop and Adventure Meet
  • English Language
  • Conservation and Biodiversity
  • Rock climbing, Ice Climbing and Mountaineering (for expedition leaders)

To meet Himalayan Glacier's team, check out the Guide Profile Page

Porter Care

Himalayan Glacier is firmly committed to porter rights. We make sure that all our porters are well treated and well paid. Furthermore, Himalayan Glacier also provides the required level of shelter, clothing and footwear that these harsh environments demand. Porters who become sick are treated with the same care and attention as other team members. We have previously used helicopters at company's expense to rescue porters from dangerous situations. And for the porter's sake, all trekkers keep the weight of their luggage under 15kgs/33 pounds. We also support the work of International Porter Protection Group (IPPG), making our resources available to them to help improve the working conditions of the porters.

Environmental Concerns

The Annapurna Region is stunningly beautiful, but equally fragile. Future generations have just as much of a right to appreciate it as we do and so the tourism industry has an obligation to protect and preserve it. Himalayan Glacier employs a 'zero impact' policy on the natural environment and the traditional communities that live there. Himalayan Glacier, therefore, enforces number of do's and don'ts. Himalayan Glacier's experienced staff can advise us on how to minimize our impact on the local environment. To find out more about the clean-up campaigns and environmental awareness events, Himalayan Glacier works with KEEP.

Acclimatization

All of Himalayan Glacier’s treks are planned with high degree of awareness of AMS (Acute Mountain Sickness). Going up at higher altitude too fast causes a medical condition serious enough to kill. We understand that for a safe trek it is essential to allow sufficient time for acclimatization. Sensible planning is therefore required to minimize the risk of AMS. Himalayan Glacier advises guest(s) especially ones with known heart, lung or blood diseases to consult their doctor before traveling. Mild headaches, fever, loss of appetite or stomach disorders are symptoms of AMS.  You may check out "Altitude Illness" by Dr Jim Duff for detailed information on AMS. Himalayan Glacier's itineraries are designed to prevent AMS as much as possible. But, it is important to remember that some visitors are more vulnerable than others.

Physical Condition & Experience Requirements

Himalayan Glacier's 17-day Annapurna with Tilicho Lake Trek is moderate trek suitable for passionate walkers who have the ability to walk at least 5-7 hours a day with a light day pack. Walking in higher altitudes is more physically demanding than walking in lower altitudes; however, if we are in excellent health with average physical fitness and have a positive attitude, self-confidence and strong determination, we can accomplish this trek successfully. Exercising and jogging regularly for some weeks prior to the trip is a good idea to enhance our strength and stability. Past hiking experience would be an asset but no technical skill is required for this trip. It is vital for participants with pre-existing medical conditions such as heart, lung, and blood diseases to consult their doctor before taking the trip. It is also advised that you inform Himalayan Glacier before booking the trek.

Best Time to Travel

Autumn (Sept. to Nov.) and Spring (March to May) are the best seasons for trekking in the Annapurna region. The weather is sunny and warm with outstanding views. If you wish to avoid crowds and enjoy some alone time with nature, then taking this trip during winter (Dec., Jan., Feb.) could also be an option. However, the temperature during winter could be harsh for most guests. Trekking in the summer or monsoon season(June to Aug) will be affected by rain but the summer trek could be a boon for a keen botanist.

Equipments & Packing List

This list is a guideline to help you pack for your adventure. Also understand that the items listed below will vary a little according to the season and the trek duration. Those items marked by an asterisk (*) are provided by Himalayan Glacier inclusive in the service. The weight limit for your luggage is 33 pounds or 15 kg. Remember that your luggage will be carried by your porter but you are required to carry a day-pack (with your valuables or anything important) on your own. We also suggest that you pack only what is necessary.

Important documents and items

  • Valid passport, 2 extra passport size photos, airline tickets
  • Separate photocopies of passport, visa form (easily obtained at Kathmandu airport), proof of insurance
  • Dollars, pounds or Euros in cash for purchasing Nepalese visa at Kathmandu airport, for paying for restaurants and hotels, for gratuities, snacks, and to purchase your own drinks and gifts
  • Credit cards, Bank/ATM/Cash machine cards for withdrawing funds from cash machines (bring a photocopy of your cards), traveler's checks, etc.

Head

  • Bandana or head scarf, also useful for dusty conditions
  • Warm hat that covers your ears (wool or synthetic)
  • Headlamp with extra batteries and bulbs
  • Sunglasses with UV protection
  • Prescription sunglasses (if required)

Upper Body

  • Polypropylene shirts (1 half sleeve and 2 long sleeves)
  • Light and expedition weight thermal tops
  • Fleece wind-stopper jacket or pullover
  • Waterproof (preferably breathable fabric) shell jacket
  • Down vest and/or jacket *
  • Gore-Tex jacket with hood, waterproof and breathable

Hands

  • 1 pair of lightweight poly-liner gloves.
  • 1 pair of lightweight wool or fleece gloves
  • 1 pair of mittens, consists of 1 Gore-Tex over mitt matched with a very warm polar-fleece mitt liner (seasonal)

 Lower Body

  • Non-cotton underwear briefs
  • 1 pair of Hiking shorts
  • 1 pair of Hiking trousers
  • 1 pair of lightweight thermal bottoms (seasonal)
  • 1 pair of fleece or woolen trousers
  • 1 pair of waterproof shell pants, breathable fabric

Feet

  • 2 pairs of thin, lightweight inner socks
  • 2 pairs of heavy poly or wool socks
  • 1 pair of Hiking boots with spare laces (sturdy soles, water resistant, ankle support, “broken in”)
  • 1 pair of trainers or running shoes and/or sandals
  • Cotton socks (optional)
  • Gaiters (winter only), optional, “low” ankle high version

Sleeping

  • 1 sleeping bag (good to -10 degrees C or 14 degrees F)*
  • Fleece sleeping bag liner (optional)

Rucksack and Travel Bags

  • 1 medium rucksack (50-70 liters/3000-4500 cubic inches, can be used for an airplane carryon)
  • 1 large duffel bag *
  • A small daypack/backpack for carrying your valuables, should have good shoulder padding
  • Small padlocks for duffel-kit bags
  • 2 large waterproof rucksack covers (optional)

Medical

  • Small, personal first-aid kit. (simple and light)
  • Aspirin, first-aid tape, and plasters (Band-Aids)
  • 1 skin-blister repair kit
  • Anti-diarrhea pills
  • Anti-headache pills
  • Cough and/or cold medicine
  • Anti-altitude sickness pills: Diamox or Acetylzolamide
  • Stomach antibiotic: Ciprofloxacin, etc. Do not bring sleeping pills as they are a respiratory depressant.
  • Water purification tablets or water filter
  • 1 set of earplugs
  • Extra pair of prescription glasses, contact lens supplies

Practical Items

  • 1 small roll of repair tape, 1 sewing-repair kit
  • 1 cigarette lighter, 1 small box of matches
  • 1 compass or GPS(optional)
  • 1 alarm clock/watch
  • 1 digital camera with extra cards and batteries
  • large Ziplocs
  • 2 water bottles (1 liter each)
  • 1 small folding knife
  • Binoculars (optional)
  • 4 large, waterproof, disposable rubbish sacks

Toiletries

  • 1 medium-sized quick drying towel
  • Toothbrush/paste (preferably biodegradable)
  • Multi-purpose soap (preferably biodegradable)
  • Deodorants
  • Nail clippers
  • Face and body moisturizer
  • Female hygiene products
  • Small mirror

Personal Hygiene

  • Wet wipes (baby wipes)
  • Tissue /toilet roll
  • Anti-bacterial hand wash

Extras/Luxuries

  • Reading book
  • Trail map/guide book
  • Journal and pen
  • iPod
  • Travel game i.e. chess, backgammon, scrabble, playing cards (to help you pass the time at teahouses and/or camps)
  • 1 modest swim suit
  • Binoculars (optional)
  • Voltage converter (from 220 to 110)
  • Plug adapter (2 round pegs to 2 flat pegs)
  • Lightweight pillow case (in case your teahouses provide you with pillows) or use your own stuff as a pillow

Additional Information

Our website contains as much information as possible about this trip. However, if you wish to discuss any aspect of this trip or your suitability for it please contact us by email. If you want to talk to us directly feel free to call us at: 00977-98510-55684

Source:www.himalayanglacier.com