Manang, the land beyond mountains. It is one of the favourite trekking destinations in Nepal for both domestic and international travellers. It is also renowned as the land beyond mountains after its neighbouring district Mustang, Nepal. The majestic wide verdant fields, valley, waterfalls, beautiful crests, people, culture and etiquette is more than enough to dazzle anyone trekking in Nepal.
Whenever one ponders about Manang, waterfalls, apple farms, outspread colourful fields with a parched hill that took over centuries to form comes to one mind. It is definitely a hidden gem behind the mountains. The trek starts from Besisahar (760 mt), Lamjung which is a subtropical zone (below 1,200 mt) then ascend gradually to the Arctic region (Above 4,400 mt). The initial part of the journey consists of several colossal and puny streams which will leave you awestruck. Imagine, witnessing cascade every after each turn, isn’t this majestic. And most roadside villages located just beneath the vast mountains. The trail follows the rapid of Marshyandi river. It isn’t over yet, all these fascinating places and terrains lead to the Phu (Phoo 4,080 mt), Magical Manang.
Phu valley trekking as its sounds is more exquisite when seen. Intersected by two small rivulets, the valley is situated like a plateau. This region is inside the ‘Annapurna Conservation Area’ so one can expect to see wildlife too. It is famous and explored by all voyager although this trek inside Manang is still in mint condition. By witnessing the valley, it feels like time has stopped. The pre-historic, houses, Chorten, stone-paved pavements and structure date back centuries and its secluded characteristic are what attracts every traveller to this region. In order to reach this secluded place, one has to take another trail from the existing path of Koto. There is no denying that everything comes with a cost and some nerve-wracking uphills cannot be neglected. But, the mightiest view comes after the hardest climb.
The place is dominated by Tibetan Culture whereas Ghale, Gurung and lama have the majority. You can observe the shift of development as most of the river crossing contains both modern and ancient wooden bridge along the way. Getting involved with a lama in the hymn is one of the admirable experience and more to this some Gumba such as ‘Satye Gumba’ also provide health facilities because of the place remoteness. Isn’t this delightful?
Another place we visited was Nar. Compared to Phoo, it was more populated and the area was also larger however the liveliness of the place and zeal of the village was on the same par. Widespread pasture land, livestock, farming, verdant fields and mountains come as a feast that filled our tummy for a lifetime. Various puja, festival, games, and rituals are common in this part for that a rambling soul can get close to religion along with nature.
The extended easy-peasy trail after Nar to Annapurna Conservation Area Shelter (ACAS) leads to Kang La pass which is elevated at an elevation of 5,320 mt. A short and demanding uphill and the sight is yours. One finds his true self after conquering the Pass and the landscape is grand.
Whenever you travel, the first thing to travel is to challenge yourself while getting close to nature but this journey of ours has brought us even closer to the culture. Starting from the Besisahar and traversing through many majestic places, friendly people of the region we suggest this trek in Manang if you are about to embark on a journey in Nepal.
Trip Itinerary and Cost
Type: Tea House
Trek Duration: 10-12 Days
Grade: Moderate – Hard
Total Cost: 1000-1500 per day
Day 1 Kathmandu to Besisahar – 5-6 hrs (Ride)
Day 2 Besisahar to Koto – 6-7 hrs (Ride)
Day 3 Trek Starts from Koto to Meta (8-9hrs)
Day 4 Meta to Phoo (7-8hrs)
Day 5 Phoo
Day 6 Phoo to Chyakhu (4-5hrs)
Day 7 Chyakhu to Naar (4-5 hrs)
Day 8 Naar
Day 9 Naar
Day 10 Naar to Kang La Pass – Ngawal (10-11hrs)
Day 11 Ngawal to Manang (3-4hrs)
Day 12 Manang to BesiSahar
Day 13 Besisahar to Kathmandu/Pokhara
To find out more about this trip. Here is the video