Tsum Valley trekking is a remote trek of cultural and topo-graphical diversity in Manaslu. It is well known for its breath-taking mountain views, challenging terrain and mix of Gurung and Tibetan villages. Trek head north towards the border of Tibet to explore hidden Tsum Valley, a fascinating and magical region of ethnically Tibetan inhabitants who still maintain strong links with Tibet. This is a side trip not to be missed, an absolute highlight. The living Buddhist culture is virtually untouched because of their rg emote location and wildlife abounds.
Manaslu Tsum Valley trekking holidays begins in Nepal’s steamy middle hills’ at historic Gorkha, a once capital of Nepal with an impressive durbar, home to Nepal’s first dynasty. From lush rice paddies with water buffalo and thatched huts, trekking north along the incredible mountain capped high trekking route through sprawling Gurung villages perched on high terraced hilltops covered in Rhododendron to reach lower Nubri where the ethnically Tibetan inhabitants speak their own dialect, partly Tibetan and partly Gurung and live a lifestyle that spans Nepal and Tibet.
Trekking ever higher to upper Nubri, purely Tibetan we share the trails with yak caravans. Trade with Tibet continues as it has for centuries and Tibetan villages have been forged from the wilderness by Tibetan refugees. Sublime mountain panoramas dominated by Manaslu itself are a highlight of the trek as our side trips to Manaslu Base Camp, the valley above Samdo near the border of Tibet and the epic crossing the snow covered Larkya La which leads to the Manang region of the Annapurna circuit.
Below is Manaslu Tsum valley trekking itinerary and for customized trekking itinerary, cost deals, latest up to date information and trekking travel guide to Tsum Valley trekking, talk to a team of trekking guide and tour leader.
Day 1: Arrive in Kathmandu (1340m)
You will be met at the airport by us, so look out your name sign when you leave the airport. Transfer to hotel and the rest of the day is free. Short trip briefs in the evening.
Day 2: Kathmandu Tour
Kathmandu tour visits the important historical and culture monument like temple and stupa. Prepare trekking equipment and gear.
Day 3: Drive to Gorkha. Trek to Gorkha Fort Camp (1060m)
Take a scenic drive for 6 hours to the historic town of Gorkha, once the capital of a massive kingdom which included parts of lower Tibet, with its old durbar, or King palace, a mix of Buddhist and Hindu deities, perched high up in the surrounding hillsides and reached by worn stone steps and stay there.
Day 4: Trek to Arkhol (570m)
Trek for 7/8 hours to Arkhol through classic middle hills scenery; rolling, forested hills, snaking rivers with rounded rock strewn on the beaches, local fishermen casting their nets, iridescent rice fields, papaya, lemon and orange trees, water buffalos, thatched huts and local bhattis (Nepali tea-houses) along the trail for a quick dal bhat or cup of tea and meeting many colorful Gurung and Hindu locals en route, we will have time to stop at the many traditional villages along the way.
Day 5: Trek to Rangnung (875m)
Trek for 5/6 hours on a lovely scenery of Arkhol village on stone steps built into the paddies and continue through the long stretch of main Arkhol lined with small shops. We continue though bustling Gurung villages with local tea-houses, some selling a delicious fish curry, contour around rice paddies and then climb high on a steep trail being rewarded by expansive views up and down the misty river valley. We ascend and descend steeply along a new road to reach our camp at Rangnung in the early afternoon after lunch at Daraudi Khola.
Day 6: Trek to Barpak (1915m)
Trek for 4/5 hours on steep, long climb up to the wonderful village of Barpak, situated perfectly on a green ridge overlooking the misty valley below. We trek through the dense forested hillside filled with Rhododendrons, Bauhenia and other large, leafy trees and stopping for a break at the Gurung memorial chautaras rest stops. These are specific to the Gurung people, whose religion is Buddhist with an animist/shamanistic bent.
Barpak is a large, Ghale (royalty) Gurung village, extremely clean, with a weekly market, wide alleys between the houses, grain and vegetables drying outside on the patios, several shops, a new school, a soccer field, viewpoints and flowers planted along the decks of these Gurung houses. Many of its men joined the Gurkha Army, returned to Barpak with new wealth, and have built lovely houses. We are towered over by Baudha Himal, a high, snow-capped peak which makes for wonderful sunrise and sunset photos.
Day 7: Trek to Laprak (2200m)
Trek for 4/5 hours to Laprak on an ascend trekking trail through the forest of rhododendrons are blooming brilliantly, in many hues of white, pink and red around us providing great photographs with the snow mountains-Baudha Himal, Shringi Himal, Ganesh Himal and the Langtang range all span the horizon; a truly breath-taking view from the pass. Bring a wind jacket as the clouds often move quickly up to this ridge, and it gets cold quickly. In the afternoon, explore Laprak village; take a walk down the hill and a look into some of the houses, all with symbolic murals on the mud-brick walls. Medicinal roots are drying on the decks, and millet and barley are spread in low baskets on the decks. The villagers are friendly, and there are lots to explore in Laprak winding maze of lanes.
Day 8: Trek to Korlabesi (875m)
A classic Nepali trekking day for 7/8 hours to Korlabesi, all spectacular but a bit hard on the knees. There trekking are ups and downs through villages, terraced fields of rice, barley and wheat, crossing bridges and rivers. We enjoy the views of the Manaslu Himal, Kutang Himal and Shringi Himal to the north on the way trekking to Korlebesi on the Buri Gandaki River.
Day 9: Trek to Jagat (1370m)
Trek for 5/6 hours past the small terraced villages Tatopani and Dovan to Jagat. We trek on ascend and descend hills through river, tobacco and buckwheat fields.
Day 10: Trek to Philim (1570m)
Short day 3 hours trek to Philim through beautiful flame-leaf trees, the paved village of Sirdibas and crossing river. We normally trek ascends and descend hilly trail.
Days 11/18: Trek to Tsum Valley Exploration
Trek to explore the mostly untracked region of Tsum valley gives you an unique opportunity to see a purely Tibetan region, untouched by Chinese intervention. There are many traditional villages to explore and ancient Tibetan Buddhist monasteries to visit and salt butter tea to be shared with the local Tsum-pa.
Day 19: Trek to Deng (1865m)
Trek through dense woods of rhododendrons, bamboo and many flowers on an up and down hills for 6/7 hours to Deng. Deng is the start of the lower Nubri region called Kutang, where the people are ethnically Tibetan but speak a different dialect than the people of upper Nubri where the people are pure Tibetans. The Kutang dialect, called kukay is a mix of Tibeto-Burman and Gurung. We have views of Lumbo Himal to the rear, as well as Lapuchen and Dwijen Himals. We camp just below the village, and get fresh greens from the family that owns the land. It is worth a visit to the upper floor of their house above us, perhaps for a glass of local chang, or Tibetan beer, and for a chat around the hearth. It starts to feel like a piece of old Tibet again.
Day 20: Trek to Namrung (2540m)
Trek through through lovely woods of pine and crossing a small bridge, see Mani stones with many ascents and descents as we walk through the gorge, all the time enjoying spectacular views to Namrung (2540m), where we will set up camp in a grassy site above a Tibetan-owned lodge.
Day 21: Trek to Lho (3180m)
Another wonderful and diverse treks day to Lho through extensive pastures, villages, billowing fields of barley, guarded by more bear watches with views of Ngadi Himal and Manaslu to Lho.
Day 22: Trek to Sama Gaon (3525m)
A wonderful ascends and descend trekking day through villages, forests, classic alpine scenery cross small streams on wooden bridges over glacial streams and fields of barley and potato to Sama Gaon, or Ro, as the locals call it.
Sama Gaon sits in a bowl at the foot of the pastures leading to the high peaks, with mani walls, a small gompa and tightly packed rows of houses at the lower reaches of village, and the large gompa at the upper reaches. The people settled here from Tibet over 500 years ago, and the two gompas date from this time, both having unique architecture and built of wood. The Tibetan villages in this region of Manaslu have distinctive entrance gates (kanis), and they maintain an active trade with their co-religionists in Tibet over several high passes nearby.
Day 23: Trek to Samdo (3850m)
Trek for 3/4 hours through the craggy woods of Himalayan Birch, during the walk up to Samdo. The villagers of Samdo came across the border from the village of Riu in Tibet after 1959 and built their new village here, at their old herding settlement.
Day 24: In Samdo
Another rest and acclimatization day in this wonderful village below Manaslu, which towers above us. We recommend a hike up the valley directly in back of Samdo, with Samdo Ri behind it, heading towards one of their trading passes to Tibet, for amazing mountain panoramas including an in-your-face view of Manaslu itself. A longer option for the day is a trip to the Gya La (large pass) to the north of Samdo, a more frequently used trading route to Tibet where the border markers at the top says China, 1962. You usually share the trail up to the pass with groups of Samdo residents and their yaks carrying timbers over the border to Tibet. True High Asia and a long day!
Day 25: Trek to Dharamsala High Camp (4460m)
Trek 3/4 hours of climbing past more glaciers, through open plateaus of dwarf rhododendron and juniper bushes, with increasingly awe-inspiring panoramas, we come to Dharamasala, the high camp for the Larkya La. We will have lunch here while the staff sets up camp and gaze out at the views. You will really feel the altitude and the cold here, so enjoy a more leisurely afternoon and keep warm. We are in blue sheep territory, so keep an eye out for herds of them grazing nearby on the barren hillsides. We will have an early dinner in preparation for our pass crossing tomorrow.
Day 26: Cross Larkya La (5140m) to Bimtang (3590m)
This is the hardest 9/10 hours trekking to Bimtang, first ascent glacier and moraine to Larkya Pass and then descends down to Bimtang. If there is fresh snow, we may see snow leopard prints from the evening before; it is also blue sheep, pika, marmot and Tibetan snow-cock territory.
The views from the top of the pass are wonderful, a mountain panorama equally stunning from both sides of our double pass. To the west Manaslu on the left and Phungi to the right. To the east, Kang Guru (ridge only), Himlung Himal, Cheo Himal and a bit further the views open up to included Gyagi Kung and the Annapurna II.
Day 27: Trek to Tilje (2300m)
Trek 4/5 hours on a ascends and descends trekking trail through open forests of brilliantly blooming rhododendron, juniper, birches and spruce, rocky river-bed and sliding hill-sides to several small, green villages to Tilje. The inhabitants are a mix of Manangis, Ghale Gurung and Chettris (Hindus), so have a unique architecture and culture.
Day 28: Trek to Tal (1680m)
It is an easy trekking day following the Dudh Khola through bamboo forests down to the grassy lawn of the last tea-house to Tal. Showers available for anyone needing one, and of course cold beers. Take the afternoon to amble over to the waterfall at the other end of town, and wander through this small hamlet.
Day 29: Trek to Syange, and then drive to Besi sahar.
Trek mostly ascends downhill through the woods, looking across the river to large waterfalls, leads us to the lovely cobbled village to Syange and drive to Besi Sahar.
Day 30: Drive to Kathmandu.
It is a hot, five) hour drive back to Kathmandu, so we will try to head off early and stop for lunch en route back. It is a different world back in the Nepali hills, and the gentle light sends us on our way back to the bustle of Nepal capital. A celebration is definitely in order tonight!
Day 31: Kathmandu Airport
Transfer to airport, at least 3 hours before your schedule flight time.