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Experience the Ultimate Annapurna Circuit with Tilicho Lake Trek – 16-Day Adventure

Experience the Ultimate Annapurna Circuit with Tilicho Lake Trek – 16-Day Adventure

Trip Facts:

Destination
Nepal
Group Size
01-12
Region
Annapurna
Trip Duration
16 Days
Activities
Trekking
Culture
Gurung / Thakali
Meals
B/B in Kathmandu & Pokhara full board (B/L/D) during trekking
Accommodation
Hotel/Teahouse
Max Elevation
5500m
Best Month
Spring / Autumn
Trip Grade
Strenuous Trek
Trek Starts / Ends
KTM / KTM
Transportation
Private Vehicle / Flight

Overview

The Annapurna Circuit with Tilicho Lake Trek is one of Nepal's most popular trekking routes, captivating travelers and adventure enthusiasts with its stunning landscapes and the mesmerizing Tilicho Lake, the world's highest situated lake at an altitude of 5,200 meters. This trek takes you through the diverse terrain of the Annapurna region, offering panoramic views of majestic mountains, including the Annapurna range and Thorang Peak. The highlight of the trek is the Thorong La Pass, sitting at an altitude of 5,416 meters, which provides trekkers with a sense of accomplishment and awe-inspiring views. The Annapurna region is truly a natural wonder, consistently providing some of the world's best trekking experiences.

Culturally rich and vibrant, the Annapurna Circuit with Tilicho Lake Trek offers a deep dive into the diverse ethnic groups of Nepal. The trek begins in Besisahar and follows the Marshyangdi River, passing through villages inhabited by people from different ethnic backgrounds, including Gurungs, Thakalis, and Manangis. These communities welcome trekkers with warm hospitality, and you’ll get to experience their unique traditions, festivals, and daily lifestyles. The trek also holds religious significance, with Hindu pilgrims visiting Tilicho Lake, believing it to be a holy spot mentioned in the Ramayana, one of Hinduism's sacred texts.

The journey to Tilicho Lake starts from Manang, diverging from the main Annapurna Circuit to explore the Khanshar Village, known as the "Last Village of Nepal." This route offers trekkers an opportunity to witness the untouched beauty of the Annapurna region, with the trail leading up to the serene Tilicho Lake. After visiting the lake, the trek continues to Yak Kharka and ascends to the Thorong La Pass. Descending from the pass, you reach Muktinath, a revered pilgrimage site, before heading to Jomsom, where a scenic 35-minute flight takes you to Pokhara, completing the circuit.

For those seeking alternative trekking experiences in the Annapurna region, consider the Annapurna Base Camp Trek, a shorter yet equally rewarding journey that leads you to the heart of the Annapurna Sanctuary. Another option is the Upper Mustang Trek, a 15-day trek that takes you through the ancient kingdom of Mustang, known for its unique Tibetan culture and starkly beautiful landscapes. The classic Annapurna Circuit Trek remains a favorite, offering an extensive exploration of the region without the diversion to Tilicho Lake, ideal for trekkers looking to experience the traditional route in its entirety

Trip Highlights

  • Breathtaking Scenery: Trek through the diverse landscapes of the Annapurna region, including lush forests, arid deserts, and snow-capped peaks.
  • Tilicho Lake: Visit the world's highest lake at 5,200 meters, a stunning glacial lake surrounded by majestic mountains.
  • Thorong La Pass: Cross the iconic Thorong La Pass at 5,416 meters, offering panoramic views and a thrilling sense of achievement.
  • Cultural Immersion: Experience the rich culture and warm hospitality of Nepal's diverse ethnic groups, including Gurungs, Thakalis, and Manangis.
  • Historic Villages: Explore ancient villages like Manang and Khanshar, and learn about their unique traditions and lifestyles.
  • Scenic Flight: Enjoy a breathtaking 35-minute flight from Jomsom to Pokhara, offering aerial views of the Himalayan landscape.
  • Alternative Treks: Consider other treks like Annapurna Base Camp, Upper Mustang, and the classic Annapurna Circuit for varied experiences.
  • Himalayan Dream Team: Trek with experienced guides from the Himalayan Dream Team, ensuring a safe, comfortable, and enriching adventure.

Experience the Ultimate Annapurna Circuit with Tilicho Lake Trek – 16-Day Adventure Itinerary

Details Outline

Upon arriving at Tribhuvan International Airport, a representative from Himalayan Dream Team will greet you and guide you to your hotel. Once you reach the hotel, you can check in, freshen up, and take some time to relax. In the evening, enjoy a welcome dinner hosted by Himalayan Dream Team. We will spend the night in Kathmandu.

Food
Dinner
Accomodation
Hotel
Highest Altitude
1335 m

Your adventure starts early, as our trekking team arrives at your hotel at 7:00 AM to begin the journey. We will embark on a 7-hour drive covering approximately 185 km from Kathmandu to Besisahar. As you arrive in Besisahar, prepare to be captivated by the spectacular views of snow-capped mountains that herald the start of your trekking experience. This scenic route not only sets the stage for what’s to come but also brings you closer to the heart of Nepal’s natural beauty.

Food
Breakfast-Lunch-Dinner
Accomodation
lodge
Highest Altitude
760 m
Walking Hours
7hrs

Starting from Bahundanda, the trail descends sharply to Syange, situated at an elevation of 1,070 meters. Along the way, you'll have the opportunity to marvel at a magnificent waterfall, a refreshing sight amidst the rugged terrain. After leaving Bahundanda, the journey continues with a crossing over the Marsyangdi River via a suspension bridge, connecting you to the rhythm of the flowing waters below.

Following the river, the path leads to the stone-laden village of Jagat, where traditional houses and friendly locals welcome trekkers. The trek then winds upward through dense forests, culminating at Chame at 1,400 meters. This leg of the trek not only showcases the diverse landscapes of the region but also offers a glimpse into the serene rural life in Nepal's mountain villages.

Food
Breakfast-Lunch-Dinner
Accomodation
Lodge
Highest Altitude
2740 m
Walking Hours
5 hrs

Your day begins with a trek through a dense forest nestled in a steep and narrow valley. Early on, you’ll cross a river via a long bridge at an elevation of 2,910 meters. As you advance, another bridge crossing at 3,040 meters offers your first clear view of the impressive Paungda Danda rock face. The sight of this sheer cliff is truly a highlight, marking the dramatic changes in the landscape.

From there, the path merges and begins its ascent to Pisang, climbing through varied terrains to reach this high mountain village. Positioned between 3,200 and 3,300 meters, Pisang offers a serene stopover, surrounded by the breathtaking Himalayan vista.

Food
Breakfast-Lunch-Dinner
Accomodation
Lodge
Highest Altitude
3300 m
Walking Hours
5/6

Today’s route takes us through the upper Manang district, shielded from the monsoon by the Annapurna Range. In this unique environment, the local communities engage in yak herding and seasonal agriculture, benefiting from historical trading rights established in 1784. Starting from Pisang, the trail splits around the Marsyangdi River, reconvening at Mungji. Opt for the scenic northern route via Ghyaru for impressive views, or the southern path through Hongde for less climbing. We'll pass through the secluded village of Bryanga before reaching Manang.

Food
Breakfast-Lunch-Dinner
Accomodation
Lodge
Highest Altitude
3540 m
Walking Hours
5/6

Spend the day adjusting to the altitude with leisurely walks around Manang, enjoying expansive views of the surrounding peaks. The day concludes with a restful evening back at our local accommodation.

Food
Breakfast-Lunch-Dinner
Accomodation
Lodge
Highest Altitude
3540 m

Post-acclimatization, we proceed towards Tilicho Lake, exiting Manang through the western gates and descending to the river. After crossing Khangsar Khola, we ascend to Khangsar Village, an area preserving old Tibetan architectural styles and known as the last village of Nepal.

Food
Breakfast-Lunch-Dinner
Accomodation
Lodge
Highest Altitude
3700 m
Walking Hours
4/5 hrs

Our path from Khangsar winds upwards, past a local monastery and onto newly constructed trails leading to a high ridge. Here, the trail splits; one maintains elevation while the other ascends sharply. We take the new route, descending via switchbacks to Tilicho Base Camp.

Food
Breakfast-Lunch-Dinner
Accomodation
Lodge
Highest Altitude
4200 m
Walking Hours
5/6

An early start helps us avoid the afternoon winds, taking us from Base Camp to the stark, breathtaking Tilicho Lake in about 3-4 hours. After exploring, we return to Base Camp, as the lake area lacks accommodations.

Food
Breakfast-Lunch-Dinner
Accomodation
Lodge
Highest Altitude
5200 m
Walking Hours
6/7

Leaving Base Camp, we follow an elevated path above Khangsar Village, passing through historical ruins and descending to cross a river on an old log bridge to reach Yak Kharka.

Food
Breakfast-Lunch-Dinner
Accomodation
Lodge
Highest Altitude
4000 m
Walking Hours
5/6

The trail ascends for several hours before a descent to cross another river, followed by a climb to Thorong Phedi, where new guesthouses offer accommodation.

Food
Breakfast-Lunch-Dinner
Accomodation
Lodge
Highest Altitude
4450 m
Walking Hours
5

We begin before dawn to traverse Thorung La Pass by mid-morning, avoiding the harsh weather typical of higher elevations. Descending from the pass, we reach Muktinath, a sacred site for both Hindus and Buddhists, by late afternoon.

Food
Breakfast-Lunch-Dinner
Accomodation
Lodge
Highest Altitude
5416 m
Walking Hours
7/8 hrs

Our route takes us through Ekle Bhatti and follows the Kali Gandaki River to Jomsom, a major town in the Mustang district with ample facilities.

Food
Breakfast-Lunch-Dinner
Accomodation
Lodge
Highest Altitude
2720 m
Walking Hours
5hrs

A short morning flight brings us to Pokhara. After checking into our hotel, the afternoon is spent exploring local attractions like Fewa Lake and Devi’s Waterfall.

Food
Breakfast-Lunch-Dinner
Accomodation
Hotel
Highest Altitude
822 m

There is a choice between a 25 minute flight to Kathmandu or, we start our 200 kilometers drive by tourist bus back to Kathmandu. In both cases you can enjoy the scenery, but from the car you will witness the beauty of Nepali nature far more better when you drive along the Trisuli river. On arrival in Kathmandu, you will be transferred to your hotel. 

Food
Breakfast
Accomodation
Hotel
Highest Altitude
1335 m

After breakfast or lunch, depending on your flight time, we will transfer you to the international airport or if you leave by evening you can put your luggage at the Hotel and enjoy the city one final day.

If you're interested in extending your stay in Nepal, you might want to consider pre-booking a day's sightseeing tour in the Kathmandu Valley or a multi-day excursion to the wildlife reserve at Chitwan. For further information, please don't hesitate to reach out to our office.

 

Food
Breakfast

Not satisfied with this itinerary?

If the above itinerary does not meet your needs, we can design individualized travel plans based on your preference and specification.

Service Included on Trip Cost

Cost Includes

  • Arrival and transfer to and from the international and domestic airports by private vehicle
  • Welcome dinner upon arrival in Kathmandu
  • 3-star hotel accommodation with bed and breakfast in Kathmandu and Pokhara
  • Domestic flight from Jomsom - Pokhara 
  • Meals (Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner) during the trek
  • Experienced, first-aid trained, government-licensed, English-speaking trekking guide
  • Permits for Annapurna Conservation Area (ACAP) and Trekkers’ Information Management System (TIMS)
  • Travel and Rescue arrangement 
  • Government taxes

Cost Excludes

  • International airfare 
  • Lunch and dinner in Kathmandu and Pokhara
  • Nepal visa on arrival at the international airport in Kathmandu (USD 30 for 15 days and USD 50 for 30 days and 4 passport-sized pictures needed)
  • All beverages
  • Personal trekking equipment, travel and medical insurance, helicopter rescue, and personal expenses
  • Tips for staff (guide/porter and driver)
  • Any other expenses not mentioned in the inclusive section above

Experience the Ultimate Annapurna Circuit with Tilicho Lake Trek – 16-Day Adventure Altitude Profile

Route Map

route map

FAQs

What is the Annapurna Circuit with Tilicho Lake Trek?

It's a trekking route in Nepal that combines the traditional Annapurna Circuit with a side trip to Tilicho Lake, located at an altitude of 4,919 meters.

The trek usually takes about 12 to 18 days, depending on your starting point, itinerary, and pace.

The best times are during the pre-monsoon spring season (March to May) and post-monsoon autumn season (September to November), when the weather is clearer and temperatures are more comfortable.

This trek is considered challenging due to its long distances, high altitudes, and the steep climbs to Tilicho Lake.

Yes, you will need the Annapurna Conservation Area Permit (ACAP) and a Trekkers' Information Management System (TIMS) card.

Accommodations are primarily teahouses which provide basic lodging and meals throughout the trek. Options become more basic as you approach Tilicho Lake.

Essential gear includes a sturdy pair of hiking boots, a sleeping bag suitable for cold temperatures, layered clothing, a wind/rain jacket, a sun hat, sunglasses, a water purification system, and a first-aid kit.

There is a significant risk of altitude sickness due to the high elevations reached on this trek. Proper acclimatization and staying hydrated are crucial to mitigate these risks.

While it's possible to trek independently, hiring a guide is recommended for safety, especially for navigating tricky sections and managing logistics.

Highlights include crossing the Thorong La Pass, visiting the holy Tilicho Lake, exploring the Manang and Mustang regions, and experiencing the diverse cultures of the Gurung and Thakali communities.

Preparation should include cardiovascular exercises such as running, cycling, and hiking, ideally involving some hills to simulate the trek conditions.

Food along the trek is mostly Nepali cuisine, with teahouses also offering a variety of Western dishes like pasta, pizza, and soup. Dal bhat is a staple that provides good energy for trekking.

The cost varies widely depending on the length of the trek, whether you hire a guide and porter, and your spending habits. Generally, you can expect to spend between $30 and $50 per day.

Always have travel insurance that covers high-altitude trekking and medical evacuation. Carry a well-equipped first-aid kit and keep emergency contact numbers handy.


Respect local customs by dressing modestly, taking off your shoes before entering temples or homes, and always asking permission before taking photographs of people.

Price Per Person

US$ 1685

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  • No Booking Fees
  • Group Discount Available
  • No hidden cost

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