Manaslu Circuit Trek Day by Day Travel Guide | Nepal


The Manaslu Circuit Trek is a stunning journey around the world's eighth highest peak, Mount Manaslu (8,156 meters), located in the remote Manaslu region of Nepal. The trail traverses a diverse range of landscapes, from lush green valleys and terraced fields to rugged terrain, alpine meadows, and high mountain Larke passes. You'll be treated to breathtaking vistas of snow-capped peaks, including Manaslu itself, as well as Himalchuli, Ngadi Chuli (known as Peak 29), and Ganesh Himal. Here's a comprehensive guide to help you plan your adventure:

Nomadic Experiences contributor Arianne Andia shares her Manaslu Circuit Trek travel guide


  • Location: Manaslu Conservation Area, Nepal
  • Duration: 13 days
  • Difficulty: Moderate to challenging
  • Permits: Manaslu Restricted Area Permit, Manaslu Conservation Area Permit (MCAP), Annapurna Conservation Area Permit (ACAP)
  • Best Time to Trek: Spring (March to May) and Autumn (September to November)

Day 1: Kathmandu to Machha Khola

Distance: Approximately 140 kilometers (87 miles). Travel Time: Around 8 to 10 hours by road.

Bus station in Kathmandu

Begin your journey early in the morning from Kathmandu. You can arrange transportation either through a private vehicle or take a public bus from the tourist bus park in Kathmandu. I took a public bus from Macha Pokhari Bus park to Machha Khola. the road are bumpy and adventurous. It was quite a ride. We stopped on the way for the lunch.

Day 2: Machha Khola to Jagat

The trail from Machha Khola to Jagat involves a mixture of gentle ascents, descents, and river crossings. Trek alongside the gushing river, passing through Budhi Gandaki River. Crossing suspension bridges and ascending gentle slopes as you make your way towards Jagat. 

Machha Khola to Jagat

You will be walking on the motor road but there are no vehicles as Government of Nepal is yet to build the road.

Day 3: Jagat to Deng

The trek from Jagat to Deng on the Manaslu Circuit offers a captivating journey through diverse landscapes and charming villages. Starting from Jagat, trekkers follow the winding trail alongside the Budhi Gandaki River, passing through terraced fields and quaint settlements like Salleri and Sirdibas. The route meanders through lush forests of pine, oak, and rhododendron, offering refreshing shade and occasional glimpses of snow-capped peaks. you ascend gradually towards Deng, they are treated to panoramic views of the surrounding mountains and cascading waterfalls, creating a picturesque backdrop for the trek.

Hike from Jagat to Deng.

Arriving in Deng, you are greeted by the tranquil ambiance of this remote Himalayan village nestled amidst terraced fields and towering cliffs. The traditional architecture and warm hospitality of the locals provide a welcoming atmosphere for weary travelers. Deng serves as a peaceful haven for trekkers to rest and rejuvenate after a day of trekking, with teahouses and lodges offering basic amenities. The journey from Jagat to Deng not only rewards trekkers with stunning natural beauty but also offers cultural insights into rural life in the Manaslu region.

Day 4: Deng to Namrung

From Deng to Namrung, the trek continues to unveil the majestic beauty of the Manaslu region, offering you a blend of scenic vistas and cultural encounters. Departing Deng, you follow the trail that winds through picturesque villages, terraced fields, and dense forests. The route gradually ascends, providing panoramic views of the surrounding mountains, including the towering peaks of Manaslu and Ganesh Himal. As you ascend, they pass through settlements like Ghap and Prok, where they can interact with locals and immerse themselves in the rich cultural heritage of the region.

Finally reaching Namrung

Arriving in Namrung, you are greeted by the charming village nestled amidst terraced fields and surrounded by towering cliffs. Namrung offers a serene atmosphere for trekkers to unwind and soak in the breathtaking scenery. The village is adorned with traditional Nepali houses, colorful prayer flags, and Buddhist stupas, adding to its cultural charm. Teahouses and lodges in Namrung provide comfortable accommodation and warm hospitality, allowing you to recharge before continuing their journey deeper into the Manaslu Conservation Area.

Day 5: Namrung to Lho

As you set out from Namrung towards Lho on the Manaslu Circuit, prepare for an enchanting trek through the heart of the Himalayas. Ascending further into the rugged terrain, you'll find yourself amidst verdant forests, charming villages, and terraced fields that dot the landscape. Along the trail, be sure to pause and take in the awe-inspiring vistas of towering peaks like Manaslu and Himalchuli, their majestic presence dominating the horizon. As you trek, you'll encounter local villages such as Lihi and Sho, where you can immerse yourself in the daily rhythms of rural life and connect with the warm-hearted locals, whose traditions are deeply rooted in Tibetan Buddhist culture.

Lho and Behold the beauty

Upon reaching Lho, you'll be greeted by the tranquil serenity of this mountain hamlet, nestled in the shadow of the towering Manaslu range. Take some time to explore the village's narrow lanes lined with traditional Tibetan-style houses and vibrant prayer flags fluttering in the breeze. Visit the local monastery, steeped in centuries of history and spirituality, and marvel at the panoramic vistas that unfold before you. As the day draws to a close, settle into one of the cozy teahouses or lodges in Lho, where you can unwind and replenish your energy amidst the warm hospitality of your hosts. The journey from Namrung to Lho promises not only stunning natural beauty but also a rich tapestry of cultural experiences that will stay with you long after your trek is over.

Day 6: Lho to Samagaun

Today you will traverse the scenic route from Lho to Samagaun, one of the most exciting parts of your Manaslu Circuit trek. Say goodbye to the quiet atmosphere of Lho, and let the surrounding nature change from rocky outcrops to green meadows and then to steep valleys. During the hike, you will be able to learn more about the local people and their culture. Observe the locals in their everyday activities and witness how their traditional way of life remains despite being perpetually surrounded by towering mountains.

The closer you get to Samagaun, the more stunning views of the Himalayas will open in front of you, offering spectacular sights of numerous snowy peaks and glaciers. Once you reach the village, take the time to experience its calm and soothing atmosphere. Stroll through the village’s narrow cobbled streets, lined with flags carrying the prayers of the Tibetian people. Meanwhile, the ancient monasteries in the area will create a deep spiritual atmosphere that only the Himalayas can provide.

Day 7: Acclimatization day in Samagaun

Your acclimatization day in Samagaun offers a chance to adjust to the altitude and soak in the beauty of this Himalayan oasis. Begin your day with a leisurely breakfast, savoring the crisp mountain air and panoramic views of the surrounding peaks.

Enjoying an outdoor tea at a random teashop along the circuit

Take advantage of the day to explore the village and its surroundings. Consider a hike to nearby viewpoints or a visit to the iconic Birendra Tal (Lake), a tranquil spot reflecting the majestic peaks above. As you wander through Samagaun, immerse yourself in the local culture by visiting monasteries, interacting with villagers, or observing traditional practices like prayer flag-making or butter lamp offerings.

Day 8: Samagaun to Samdo

you'll walk from Samagaun to Samdo. Start your day with a yummy breakfast and get ready for a fun adventure! As you walk, you'll see big mountains covered in snow. Keep an eye out for yaks, big furry animals with long horns, and cute marmots popping out of their burrows.

The trail will take you up and down hills. When you reach Samdo, you'll see more amazing mountains all around you. Take a break, catch your breath, and check into your cozy place to stay. You can relax and get ready for more exciting trekking adventures tomorrow!

Day 9: Acclimatization Day in Samdo

On your acclimatization day in Samdo, take it easy and give your body time to adjust to the high altitude. Start by enjoying a leisurely breakfast and then consider going for a short hike around the village.

if you're feeling adventurous, you can opt for an exciting day trip to the Tibetan border from Samdo. This journey offers a unique opportunity to explore the rugged terrain and experience the cultural richness of the region.

Start early in the morning and embark on the scenic trek towards the border. Along the way, you'll traverse through high mountain passes, expansive valleys, and pristine landscapes, with breathtaking views at every turn.

Upon reaching the border, take in the awe-inspiring vistas of the Himalayas stretching into Tibet, and immerse yourself in the unique atmosphere of this remote frontier. Spend some time soaking in the cultural significance of the area, perhaps interacting with local traders, or visiting nearby monasteries. After a memorable day of exploration, return to Samdo in the evening, filled with unforgettable memories of your adventure to the Tibetan border.

Day 10: Samdo to Dharmasala

Starting from Samdo, I felt a mix of excitement and anticipation as I geared up for the day's adventure. After a hearty breakfast, I hit the trail, ready to take on whatever the Himalayas had in store for me. And let me tell you, the views were absolutely breathtaking! As I trekked through rocky terrain and gradually ascended to higher altitudes, I was surrounded by towering peaks and pristine valleys stretching out as far as the eye could see.

Along the way, I encountered some amazing wildlife, from majestic blue sheep to adorable Himalayan marmots popping up to say hello. Each step brought me closer to Dharmasala, also known as Larkya Phedi, where I'd be resting up before tackling the Larkya La Pass. When I finally arrived, I couldn't help but feel a sense of awe at the sheer beauty of the mountainous landscape surrounding me.

After settling into my accommodation, I took a moment to soak it all in, enjoying a well-deserved meal and reflecting on the incredible journey so far. The tranquility of the mountains was truly something special, and I couldn't wait to see what the next day would bring.

Day 11: Dharmasala to Bhimtang

I've just had the most amazing trekking experience from Dharmasala to Bhimtang on the Manaslu Circuit, and I can't wait to tell you all about it!

So, starting from Dharmasala, also known as Larkya Phedi, I woke up bright and early, feeling both excited and a little nervous about the day ahead. After a hearty breakfast and a quick check of my gear, I hit the trail, ready to conquer the challenges that lay ahead.

The trek from Dharmasala to Bhimtang was nothing short of spectacular. As I climbed higher into the mountains, I was surrounded by jaw-dropping scenery at every turn. From lush green forests to cascading waterfalls and snow-capped peaks, the landscape was like something out of a dream. And the feeling of accomplishment as I reached the top of the Larkya La Pass was indescribable!

But the adventure didn't stop there. As I descended towards Bhimtang, I was treated to even more breathtaking views and encountered friendly locals along the way. When I finally arrived in Bhimtang, I was greeted with warm hospitality and a sense of peace that can only be found in the mountains.

Day 12: Bhimtang to Dharapani

Starting the day in Bhimtang, I woke up to the most breathtaking views of the surrounding mountains. After a hearty breakfast, I hit the trail, feeling a mix of excitement and a little sadness knowing that my adventure was coming to an end.

As I descended from Bhimtang, the landscape changed dramatically, with lush forests giving way to quaint villages and terraced fields. Along the way, I crossed crystal-clear streams and encountered friendly locals going about their daily lives. It was amazing to see the contrast between the remote mountain villages and the bustling towns we passed through.

As I made my way towards Dharapani, I couldn't help but feel a sense of accomplishment knowing how far I'd come on this journey. And when I finally arrived in Dharapani, I was greeted with warm smiles and a sense of nostalgia for the incredible experiences I'd had along the way.

Day 13: Dharapani to Kathmandu

I was sad to say goodbye to the stunning landscapes and warm hospitality of the mountain villages. But on the other hand, I was looking forward to returning to the hustle and bustle of Kathmandu.

The trek from Dharapani to Kathmandu was a mix of emotions. As I descended from the mountains, I couldn't help but feel a sense of accomplishment knowing that I had completed the circuit. But at the same time, I found myself reminiscing about the incredible experiences I had along the way – from crossing high mountain passes to encountering friendly locals and soaking in the natural beauty of the Himalayas.

Arriving back in Kathmandu was like coming full circle. The sights, sounds, and smells of the city were both familiar and comforting after spending weeks in the wilderness. And while I was sad that the trek had come to an end, I was also grateful for the memories that I would carry with me forever.

What are the Permits required for Manaslu Circuit Trek?

To trek the Manaslu Circuit, you'll need to obtain several permits, as the area falls within a restricted region of Nepal. Here are the main permits required for the trek:

Restricted Area Permit (RAP): The Manaslu Conservation Area is a restricted region, and all trekkers need a Restricted Area Permit (RAP) to enter. This permit is issued by the Department of Immigration in Kathmandu or through authorized trekking agencies. You must be accompanied by a licensed guide to obtain this permit.

Another teahouse

Manaslu Conservation Area Permit (MCAP): In addition to the RAP, you'll also need a Manaslu Conservation Area Permit (MCAP). This permit is issued by the Nepal Tourism Board or the Conservation Area Office in Soti Khola. It is essential for trekking through the Manaslu Conservation Area.

Annapurna Conservation Area Permit (ACAP): The Manaslu Circuit Trek often includes a section through the Annapurna Conservation Area, so you'll also need an Annapurna Conservation Area Permit (ACAP). This permit can be obtained from the Nepal Tourism Board office in Kathmandu or Pokhara.

Can you Trek Manaslu Circuit Trek Independently?

Trekking the Manaslu Circuit independently isn't permitted. Local trekking agencies are the only ones authorized to issue the necessary permits for the trek. I had a fantastic experience with Magical Nepal for my Manaslu Circuit Trek. Their team made the booking process smooth and hassle-free, ensuring all the required permits were obtained.

One of the great things about trekking with Magical Nepal was their transparency. Before the trek, I could see the details of the other group members who would be joining the trip. This not only helped me prepare mentally but also allowed for better coordination during the trek itself.

The guides provided by Magical Nepal were exceptional. They were experienced, knowledgeable about the local culture and environment, and always ensured our safety and well-being throughout the journey. Their expertise added immense value to the trekking experience.

Additionally, I found Magical Nepal's Manaslu circuit trek package and itinerary to be well-designed and updated. They offered a comprehensive Manaslu trek package that included accommodation, meals, permits, and transportation, making the trekking experience hassle-free and enjoyable.