Nar Phu Valley Trek | Overview and Itinerary

  • Aug 9, 2019
  • Marvel Adventure
  • 1861
Nar Phu Valley Trek falls within restricted areas located from the capital Kathmandu city towards due Far North Mid-West Himalaya within the district of beautiful Manang.
Nar and Phu Valley is an amazing country situated beyond north of Annapurna massive range of mountains and on the backsides of Chulus range of peaks and close to Damodar Himal in the north with Mt. Himlung the highest peaks within Nar and Phu area at the height of 7,126 m and 23,380 ft.
Nar- Phu Valley was once closed to outside travelers for many years and flung its door open for interested adventurer and visitors since last past two decades. Only few groups of trekkers have seldom ventured in this new and raw country. Thus, it makes this journey and walks more interesting and being away from mainstream trekking trails of Annapurna circuit for a week or more.

Table of Contents

Nar Phu Valley Trek Highlights

  • Higher side of beautiful Manang valley and beyond Annapurna Himalaya
  • Amazing scenery of dramatic terrains and high peaks on daily walks
  • Adventure of great contrast of various climate, cultures and landscapes
  • A hidden Shangri-La around Nepal Far North Mid-West on least visited areas
  • Explore Nar and Phu a time and weather withered villages of great interest 


Nar Phu Valley Trek Overview

Nar-Phu Valley is one of the most interesting and fascinating place to explore around its pristine and undisturbed area where some hidden destinations remains retaining as untouched region.
It is a great opportunity for travelers, trekkers and explorer to visit around hidden Shangri-La of Nar and Phu villages. The weather beaten country offers breathtaking scenery of its surrounding high eroded hills with giant peaks to capture on walks to Nar and Phu valley.
Nar-Phu is one of few regions in Nepal Himalaya where trekkers and outside world are unaware of this magnificent country that exists in the far corners of Himalaya as this trek slowly getting more attention since last few decades.
On this walk, you will come across few groups of trekkers and adventurer than on main trekking trails of lower Manang valley of most famous and popular Annapurna Circuit route.
Nar Phu Valley Trek is a great scenic walks following the northern route to reach first at Phu villages with time here to visit around its time forgotten farm villages and old monasteries of great interest.
After Phu villages walking on peaceful trail to reach to its second village at Nar quite smaller than Phu with almost similar designed houses and way of life. Then heading to cross high Kang-La pass at above 5,322 m high rewards you with stunning views and panorama of mountain range.
From the pass walk down to Ngwal village to join on main trail of Annapurna Circuit to reach main Manang village or return back heading past Pisang village to Chame town and downhill to Syange. Then drive back to Kathmandu or Pokhara.
If not returning one can continue walk past main Manang village enclosed with series of snow capped peaks on both side of the valley with Annapurna and Gangapurna to the south with Chulus and Pisang peak in the north direction.
From Manang walk leads you to last settlement of Manang area at Yak Kharka, Phedi and High Camp of Thorang-La Pass. Whereby, the climb takes you to the highest pass and spot of the adventure at above 5,416 m high facing outstanding and dramatic views of high snow capped mountains.
View includes all of Chulus with Annapurna II-III and IV along with Gangapurna, Tilicho peaks includes Damodar Himal and Dhaulagiri Himalaya range as walk descends to holy site at Muktinath temple premises and in the nice lodge of Muktinath village called Rani Pawa.
The trek ends with drive to Jomsom, the headquarter town of Mustang district and home of Thakali the tribe of Kaligandaki River Valley and on the old Trans Himalaya Salt Trade and Caravan route to Tibet that extends beyond Upper Mustang.
From Jomsom either take a short flight to beautiful Pokhara or enjoy overland journey with scenic views of both Annapurna and Dhaulagiri mountain range all the way to Pokhara for last overnight stop before Kathmandu.

Routes with more information of Nar Phu Valley 

Starting with exciting overland journey from Kathmandu or from beautiful Pokhara cities, where drive takes you to low warmer farm country of Lamjung at Besisar, a large town and headquarter of the district.

From Besisar, a short drive to starting point of the trek either from Syange or Jagat villages to reach at Dharapani village within cooler areas of alpine climatic zone with nice lovely forest where Annapurna circuit and Manaslu trail meets at Dharapani.

After Dharapani within more Buddhism areas on walks, observe Tibetan style houses with prayer monuments and rows of stone inscribed walls as well festooned within spinning chiming bells as walk leads on main Annapurna circuit trail overlooking views of peaks.

From Dharapani, walk to Kodo a moderate size village close to Chame, a headquarter town of whole Manang area or a district. At Kodo where our direction diverts from main popular Annapurna Circuit trail for some days heading into narrow gorge in between high rocky cliffs following Phu River to reach a wide open and exposed valley on reaching first at Phu village.

With rest day at Phu, visit Tashilkhang and Samdu Choling Monastery and Kyauchyu waterfalls. Phu is a moderate size village of 30 houses for 100 to 150 inhabitants from old folks to children with men and women, where native are mostly Yak herders and farmers. In late autumn around November, most of the villagers migrates to low warmer areas to escape bitter cold of winter times.

From Phu enjoying pleasant and exciting days exploring its age-old heritage villages adorned with impressive Buddhist culture and custom, as walk leads on the same trail for few days then towards Na village.

At Na visit interesting areas of great interest where route leads at the base of high Kang-la pass within absolute wilderness of high mountains and rocky hill cliffs. Next early climb takes you on top Kang-la at 5,322 meters high facing magnificent views of peaks that surround the scenic high pass.

After enjoying marvelous scenery as walk leads to long descend to Ngawal village to reach on the main Annapurna trails to reach at main Manang village. It is an interesting walk within excellent views of mountains on both side of Manang valley.

On reaching at Manang valley with time to marvel views and visit Braga monastery. This monastery is one of the important and old Gompa of Manang area enriched with ancient artifacts and idols of Buddha with other famous Gurus of Buddhism.

From Manang having fabulous stay where walk leads far end of the valley where steep climb takes you on top Thorang-la pass marked with thousands of Buddhist colorful prayer flags with a signboard of Thorang-la and its height of 5,416 m.

Enjoy spectacular views as route takes you to long descend at Muktinath area and its village. Muktinath is regarded as a holy spot for Hindu followers where hundreds of pilgrims from Nepal and India visit to worship Muktinath, dedicated to Lord Vishnu (one of main three gods of Hindu religion). Muktinath literally means Free or to liberate from all your sins.

Muktinath, located within Lower area of Mustang district is a windswept country with few surviving trees of Poplars and Willows, where motor-road has reached around Mustang area making it possible for drive to Pokhara and Kathmandu. From Muktinath with options taking an overland four-wheel jeep drive or fly from Jomsom to reach at scenic Pokhara with great alternative and choice as per your time and duration.

Alternative Routes after Nar Phu Valley Trek

After a great time at Nar and Phu and around Manang village, one can trek to Tilicho Lake. Tilicho is a beautiful large emerald colored lake, considered as highest lakes of Nepal and also a holy spot for Hindu and Buddhism.

It takes 2-3 days to reach at Tilicho base camp and the lake from main Manang village, with two alternative options either continue to the end of Tilicho hidden corners at the base of Mesokanto-La pass and cross to reach at Jomsom town.

Mesokanto-La pass seldom traversed by few trekkers and adventurer at the height of 5,305 m / 17,404 ft offers excellent views of peaks with Tilicho, Gangapurna, Nilgiri’s and Dhaulagiri range.
Other options is to walk back on the same route back near to Manang village and continue walk on main Annapurna circuit route to reach high Thorang-la to reach Muktinath and Jomsom.
From Jomsom taking choice of short scenic flight of 22 mins to reach Pokhara or take an exciting drive where you can witness more of Kaligandaki River villages and great views of Dhaulagiri and Annapurna peaks, as drive involves heading into world deepest gorge of Kaligandaki River valley.
The deep gorge formed by massive mountains of Dhaulagiri and Annapurna located on each side of the rivers makes an interesting overland journey to reach Pokhara and to Kathmandu.

Nar Phu Valley Trek Outline Itinerary

Option A:
Day 01: From Kathmandu or Pokhara drive to Syange (1,240 m) via Besisar of approx 6-8 hrs journey.
Day 02: Trek to Dharapani (1,920 m) - 06 hrs.
Day 03: Trek to Kodo 2,540 m near Chame (2,670 m) - 05 hrs.
Day 04: Trek to Dharmashala (3,230 m) - 05 hours.
Day 05: Trek to Kyang (3,020 m) - 05 hours.
Day 06: Trek to Phu village (4,080 m) - 06hours.
Day 07: Rest day at Phu village and explore Phu Valley.
Day 08: Trek to Nar Phedi (3, 545 m) - 06 hrs.
Day 09: Trek to Nar Gaon (4,206 m) - 06 hrs.
Day 10: Trek to Kang La Base Camp (4,530 m) - 05 hrs.
Day 11: Cross Kangla Pass (5, 322 m) and trek to Ngawal (3,650 m) - 07 hrs.
Day 12: Trek to Manang Village (3,450 m) - 05 hrs.
Day 13: Trek to Yak Kharka (4,110 m) - 06 hrs.
Day 14: Trek to Thorang High Camp (4,600 m) - 04 hrs.
Day 15: Cross Thorang-La (5,416 m) and to Muktinath (3,800 m) - 07 hrs.
Day 16: Drive to Jomsom (2, 715 m) - 02 hrs.
Day 17: Fly / drive to Pokhara (860 m) from Jomsom with free afternoon.
Day 18: Drive / Fly back to Kathmandu and transfer to hotel.
Option B with visit of Tilicho Lake and crossing Mesokanto-La pass:
Day 01: From Kathmandu or Pokhara drive to Syange (1,240 m) via Besisar (800 m) of approx 6-8 hrs.
Day 02: Trek to Dharapani (1,920 m) - 06 hrs.
Day 03: Trek to Kodo (2,540 m) near Chame 2,670 m - 05 hrs.
Day 04: Trek to Dharmashala (3,230 m) - 05 hours.
Day 05: Trek to Kyang (3,020 m) - 05 hours.
Day 06: Trek to Phu village (4,080 m) – 06 hours.
Day 07: Rest day at Phu village and explore Phu Valley.
Day 08: Trek to Nar Phedi (3, 545 m) - 06 hrs.
Day 09: Trek to Nar Gaon (4,206 m) - 06 hrs.
Day 10: Trek to Kang La Base Camp (4,530 m) - 05 hrs.
Day 11: Cross Kangla Pass (5, 322 m) trek to Ngawal (3,650 m) - 07 hrs.
Day 12: Trek to Manang Village (3,450 m) - 05 hrs.
Day 13: Trek to Khangsar (3,734 m) - 05 hrs.
Day 14: Trek to Tilicho Base Camp (4, 800 m) - 05 hrs.
Day 15: Trek to Tilicho Lake 4,140 m - 04 hrs.
Day 16: Trek to base of Mesokanto-la at 4,860 m high - 05 hrs.
Day 17: Cross Mesokanto-La (5,305 m) to Kaisang 3,510 - 07 hrs.
Day 18: Spare and contingency day in case of bad weather to cross the pass.
Day 19: Trek to Jomsom (2,715 m) and transfer to lodge - 05 hrs.
Day 20: From Jomsom fly to Pokhara and transfer to hotel (22 mins via air).
Day 21: Drive or Fly to Kathmandu and transfer to hotel.

Nar Phu Valley Trek Difficulty

Nar and Phu Valley Trek lead you from moderate to adventurous grade due to touch of high altitude. The trek is normal like any other walking around mountain and hill trails of Nepal Himalaya.
It all starts with moderate walks and climb to reach at Nar and Phu with an adventurous climb to reach at high Kang-la pass, then with steep descend to Manang valley.
Where walk leads on moderate gentle winding ups to Thorang Phedi with steep climb again to highest spot of the adventure on top Thorang-la pass with steep downhill to Muktinath to end the walks.
However, all trekkers joining for this trip needs to be physically fit and in sound medical health to cope with high terrain and passes and walking into rough rugged and beautiful country to enjoy your adventure in Nepal Himalaya.

Nar Phu Valley Trek Cost and Permits requirement:

As Nar and Phu falls within restricted region of Nepal Himalaya, special permits are required at extra cost to enter the forbidden areas of Nar and Phu.
The trip cost also includes ACAP (Annapurna Conservation Area Project) Permit which is active to conserve all Annapurna regions to its pristine form as it was past hundreds of years.
Besides special permits and package trip cost, rest expenses for your own need for hot-showers, charging electrical gadgets from the lodge where available including drinks, buying souvenirs and gratitude (tips) at the end of the treks at Jomsom.

Nar Phu Valley Trek Conclusion

New, almost fresh and raw areas around Nar and Phu, a Shangri-la or a hidden country away from mainstream trekking trails, that makes Nar and Phu a special and exclusive trekking, an enjoyable adventure within its pristine location untouched and undisturbed country.
The main highlights reaching at Phu and Nar villages is to witness hidden culture and custom of the area and as well crossing two high passes of Kang-la and Thorang-la with incredible mountain panorama.

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