One of the newest treks in the Manaslu region is the Lower Manaslu Cultural Trek. This route has been recently been laid out, and is an ideal short trek with a moderate grade. It offers some fantastic views of the High Himalayas while enjoying primarily the Gurung Culture.
There are waterfalls, wildflowers and fast flowing mountain streams. The view from Dhanche Danda offers one of the finest sunrise views of the mighty Himalayas with Mt. Manaslu (elev. 8,163 m) the crowning jewel of the morning.
The region was the epicenter of the devastating 2015 earthquake that hit Nepal. The region is currently being rebuilt by the determination of these hardy mountain people.
The trek is ideal for beginners and older people who want to try trekking. While it does offer a few challenges, it is not shy on natural beauty.
The trek needs no special permits as this is not part of the Manaslu Conservation Area. All trekking is home stay except at one place where we will spend the night in a Porter's Shelter.
DAY 1 – Arrival in Kathmandu, Transfer to your hotel
DAY 2 – Travel to Gorkha, tour city
DAY 3 – Travel northward to Baluwa, trek to Barpak
DAY 4 – Trek to Laprak
DAY 5 – Trek to Namba Kharka
DAY 6 – Sunrise at Dhanche Danda, trek to Tallo Thotnery
DAY 7 – Trek to Deurali
DAY 8 – Return to Kathmandu
DAY 9 – Departure
DAY 1 – Arrival in Kathmandu: Arrive at Tribhuvan International Airport where you will be met by a representative of Swiss Nepal Family Trekking & Expedition and taken to your Three Star Hotel for the night.
DAY 2 – Travel to Gorkha (elev. 1060 m): The day begins by traveling to Gorkha City in a private vehicle. The trip is a beautiful journey as you travel across the Valley Rim and into the canyons beyond, following the Trisuli River much of the way. Gorkha City is located on a high hill with incredible views of the mountains. Visit the old royal palace (Gorkha Durbar) where King Prithivi Narayan Shah began his conquest of the various kingdoms to create the modern state of Nepal 250 years ago. Gorkha is a beautiful city with steep hills and charming three star hotels. Travel time is around 5 hours.
DAY 3 – Travel to Baluwa, Trek to Barpak (elev. 1950 m): The day begins by following the Daraudi River through its valley northward on the road until we come to the village of Baluwa. Here we begin our trek upwards, past beautiful waterfalls and upwards until we reach the village of Barpak. The village is in many ways a small city with a population of around 10,000. The village is connected by road to the rest of Nepal only part of the year. There are wonderful views of Mt. Boudha Himal to the north with its snowcapped peak. We will stay in a local tea house for the night. Trekking time is around 5 hours.
DAY 4 – Trek to Laprak (elev. 2100 m): We depart Barpak and crest the hill above Barpak as we make our way toward Laprak village. There are great views of the mountains today as we look northward. We can see Manaslu, along with other peaks. Laprak Village hangs off the side of the cliff as the paths make their way down stone steps through the village. Laprak suffered immensely in the 2015 earthquake; the local people are now rebuilding their village. This is a Gurung village and there is a great deal of local culture to enjoy. Trekking time is 4 – 5 hours.
DAY 5 – Trek to Namba Kharka (elev. xxxx m): Today's journey takes us long the rim of the cliff and then upwards past Namba Kharka and onto our destination which offers an incredible view of the mountains. This place has a simple porter's shelter, but it is very new and pleasant facility. We will turn in early because we are getting up early to enjoy a fantastic sunrise over the High Himalayas. Trekking time is 4 hours.
DAY 6 – Trek to Dharche Danda (elev. 3200 m), trek to Tallo Thotnery: The day begins before sunrise as we make our way to the top of Dharche Danda. It is about a 45 minute walk to this high point where there is a temple dedicated to the sacred gods of the Gurung people. From up here, enjoy a most incredible sunrise over Mt. Manaslu and the surrounding peaks. After watching a sunrise, take a breakfast and then begin the trek toward Tallo Thotnery. It is a long day of trekking, but almost of the trip is dropping in elevation. There are no villages from Dharche Danda to Thotnery, so the villagers will bring us a picnic lunch along the way. The trip passes along some beautiful scenery as well as great views of the mountains. Tallo Thotnery is a pleasant little Gurung village where we will stay in a local tea house. Trekking time is 8 hours.
DAY 7 – Trek to Deurali (elev. xxxx m): Today is the last day of trekking as we make our way to the village of Deurali. It is here we can pick up a bus back to Gorkha. The trail will pass by several small villages with great mountain views. Trekking time is 5 hours and we will stay at a local hotel.
DAY 8 – Return to Kathmandu: In the morning, we will meet our private vehicle that will take us back to Kathmandu. It will be about an 8 hour drive back to Kathmandu where we will check into our Three Star Hotel. In the evening, enjoy a farewell dinner with cultural show. Travel time is 8 hours.
DAY 9 – Departure: All good things must come to an end, and today, it is time to travel to your next destination. Your representative at Swiss Nepal Family Trekking & Expedition can help you to plan your future trip as well as to other destinations around South Asia. Be sure to talk to your representative before leaving Kathmandu about a return trip to this great country. As they say, a lifetime is never enough to explore all that Nepal and the Himalayas have to offer.
THE TREKKING GROUP
For this trek, there will be one leader, an assistant leader (4 trekkers = 1 assistant leader) and Sherpa porters for carrying luggage (2 trekkers = 1 porter). This arrangement ensures that if anyone in the group is sick, the trip can still go ahead as planned. Swiss Nepal Family Trekking & Expedition can run this trek for groups of any size. But, Swiss Nepal Family Trekking & Expedition generally includes maximum of twelve (12) visitors as this company has found this to be the optimum size for a successful trip. However, if you would like to make a group booking for more than twelve people, Swiss Nepal Family Trekking & Expedition can arrange this, too.
All accommodations for the Lower Manaslu Cultural Trek are on a twin sharing basis with inclusive trip costs and based on standard of hygiene, standard of service and food, location, etc. There are two styles of accommodations on this trip. In Kathmandu, we will stay two nights in Three Star Hotels and one night in Gorkha. On the trek, we will stay five nights at local lodges and tea houses which do vary in quality. Most contain unheated rooms with wood beds and foam mattresses. Swiss Nepal Family Trekking & Expedition provides attached rooms in some major towns; however tea houses or lodges in some places only have shared facilities as well as shared toilet. If we are a solo traveler, we may have to share the room. However, some places in Tsum Valley have just one big room where everyone sleeps. Please understand that we will try to provide single rooms if at possible for an additional supplemental fee.
During our trek, we can enjoy typical Nepali food as well as some basic foods from different types of cuisines. While in Kathmandu, we can enjoy a great selection of foods from a variety of ethnic cultures. In the larger villages, we will have good selections, but some of the small villages may only feature a single item for dinner. Lunch will be served as a picnic lunch. There will be a farewell dinner that will feature a cultural show in Kathmandu.