Annapurna Region Trekking encompasses the Annapurna Conservation Area in the western Nepal. Annapurna region is designated as a treasure house for its ecological and cultural richness and has been developed as an eco tourism destination with a joint effort from the local community and Annapurna Conservation Area Project (ACAP).
Anyone is overwhelmed by the stark contrast in landscape found in this region stretching from barren and arid valleys in the north adjacent to Tibet (China) to lush rhododendron, birch and magnolia forests in the lower elevation. Endangered species like Snow Leopard, Red Panda, Musk Deer, Tibetan Mule, Tibetan Rabbit have made this part of Himalaya their home. The blooming of rhododendrons during Spring is a sight not to be missed so is numerous waterfall, streams, rivers and natural hot spring water.
The region features 55km long Annapurna massif which includes Annapurna I (8091m), the tenth highest mountain in the world, along with nine other peaks that are above 7000m. Annapurna Sanctuary at an average elevation of 4000m offer an astounding 360 degree views of some of the world’s tallest mountains including Annapurna and Dhaulagiri ranges. And there is also the deepest valley in the world, the Kali Gandaki gorge, located between Annapurna and Dhaulagiri peaks. Crossing Thorong La pass at an altitude of 5416m and the hike to Machapuchre Base Camp (3700m) and Annapurna Base camp (4130m) makes for the most challenging yet rewarding experience.
The majority of communities here belong to two ethnic groups, Thakali and Gurungs both of which are steeped into Tibetan Buddhism. The valleys of Manang and Mustang, and the kingdom of Mustang in Lo Manthang are closer to Tibet than Nepal both geographically and culturally. You can visit many ancient monasteries, stupas and mani walls along with Chumig Gyatsa or Muktinath temple, the most sacred religious shrine among Buddhists and Hindus.
Annapurna Trekking is considered one of the ten most fascinating trekking routes in the world. A variety of trekking options are available in Annapurna region from short and east treks to challenging, longer treks with high Himalayan passes. There are plenty of guesthouses and lodges in this region with varieties of services on offer from hot shower to international cuisines. All Annapurna treks begins and ends in Pokhara, a beautiful lake city situated some 200km southwest of Kathmandu.