Tilicho Lake Trekking goes to the off-beaten tracks offering majestic views of Annapurna range teamed up with mixed culture and the major attraction, the Tilicho Lake. Tilicho Lake is considered the world’s highest lake located in the trans-Himalayan zone and is formed by the glacial melt of the entire northern slopes of Annapurna and the Thorung Peak. Trekking into Tilicho follows the same route of the Annapurna Circuit alongside the Marshyangdi River trail up to the Tilicho Lake. The trail offers spectacular views of Manaslu and Himalchuli towards the eastern side. En-route visits the Manang village inhabited by Tibetans' religious community with different cultures and customs. Day hiking from Manang offers some great views of peaks like Gangapurna and Gangapurna glacier lake.
The trek starts with a drive to Besisahar from Kathmandu and basically follows the Annapurna Circuit route. Reaching Manang instead of going to the valley north to Tanki Manang & Yak Kharka, the trail proceeds to the main valley to the west passing through the village of Khangsar and trek up till Tilicho Lake. Later on, trek to Yak Kharka, crossing the Thorung La pass at 4450 meters and hike down to Muktinath and towards Jomsom to eventually fly to Pokhara.
What to expect ?
Observe the glacial melt of the entire northern slopes of Annapurna and Thorang Peak, which is claimed to be the highest lake in the world. Experience the fine village inhabited by a wide diversity of people from different ethnic groups, offering spectacular and majestic views of the white himalayas.
Day 01: Arrive in Kathmandu
After landing at the Tribhuvan International Airport in Kathmandu from your designated destinations, you will be received by a representative of the travel company at the arrival gate who will then transfer you to you allotted hotels. If the time persists, you can either visit the city or relax at the hotel to overcome your jet lag. O/N at Hotel.
Day 02: Kathmandu Sightseeing and trek preparation
The Kathmandu sightseeing trip will begin in the morning. After breakfast, you will be taken towards Kathmandu Durbar (Palace) Square, one of the heritage sites where you can view many historical and cultural monuments. Later, you will visit another heritage site known as Pashupatinath Temple. This is a sacred Hindu Temple of Lord Shiva named which is always crowded by Hindu pilgrims. After lunch, visit Buddhist pilgrimage Swoyambhunath (famous by the name of Monkey temple among tourists) will be carried forward. Likewise, Boudhanath Shrine will be covered by the evening. After concluding the sightseeing, there will be a seminar for you to attend to discuss the upcoming trekking plans. O/N at Hotel.
Day 03: Kathmandu to Besi Sahar 6-7 hrs
After breakfast, drive to Besi-Sahar from Kathmandu which takes about 6-7 hours. En-route passing along scenic beauty and city suburbs. Upon arrival, check-in lodge and the rest of the time can be spent exploring this beautiful town located on a hillside. O/N at Lodge
Day 04: Besi Sahar to Bahundanda (1300m) 5-6 hrs
The trek starts today with walking downhill on sub-tropical forests and reaching the village of Khudi. It’s a scenic route providing great views of Hiunchuli, Manaslu, Peak 29 (Nagadi Chuli). Afterward, you will reach Bhulbule for a quick breather. After crossing Ngadi village en-route will reach Bahundanda. O/N at Lodge.
Day 05: Baundanda to Chamje (1410m) 5-6 hrs
After breakfast, start-off with descending down on a steep trail and reach the village of Syange. After crossing several suspension bridges will reach Chamje passing en-route Jagat. O/N at Lodge.
Day 06: Chamje to Bagarchhap (2160m) 5 hrs
The trail follows a rocky path alongside the Marshyangdi River steadily uphill to Tal (1675m), the first village in the Manang district. Then it crosses a wide & flat valley with ups & downs to Dharapani (1890m). A stone entrance Chorten greets you en-route and reaches Bagarchap, a typical Tibetan influenced village. The village has flat-roofed stone houses of local Tibetan design surround by apple orchards and maize fields. O/N at Lodge.
Day 07: Bagarchhap to Chame (2630m) 5 hrs
You will climb to Tyanja (2360m) and continue thru forest and river to Kopar (259
m). Closer to reaching Chame, the headquarters of Manang district, get rewarded by some great views of Annapurna II and come across two small hot springs by the town. En-route you will encounter a local community believed to be migrated from Tibet a long time in the past. These people have brought the local Tibetan house designs and maintained their ways. O/N at Lodge.
Day 08: Chame to Pisang (3300m) 5 hrs
The trail goes thru deep forest in a steep and narrow valley crossing a river by a long bridge at 2910meters. You then cross another bridge at 3040meters; at this point witness, the view of soaring Paungda Danda rock face begins to appear. From here the trail joins to climb to Pisang sprawling between 3200m & 3300meters. O/N at Lodge.
Day 09: Pisang to Manang (3540m) 5 hrs
The trek goes past a direr upper part of the Manang district. cut off from the full effect of the monsoon by the Annapurna Range. People of this region herd the yaks & raise crops for part of the year. They also continue to enjoy special trading rights gained way back in 1784.
Today we continue through the drier upper part of the Manang district, cut off from the full effect of the monsoon by the Annapurna Range. People of this region herd the yaks & raise crops for part of the year. They also continue to enjoy special trading rights gained way back in 1784. Leaving Pisang, we have alternate trails north and south of the Marsyangdi River which meets up again at Mungji. The southern route by Hongde, with its airstrip, at 3325meters which involves less climbing than the northern route via Ghyaru, though there are better views on the trail that follows the northern bank of the river. From Mungji, the trail continues past the picturesque but partially hidden village of Bryanga at 3475meters to nearby Manang at 3540meters. O/N at Lodge.
Day 10: Acclimatization day at Manang village (3540m)
Today we spend a day acclimatizing in Manang. The whole day we spend doing some fine day walks and overviewing the magnificent views around the village & the day time is best to gain altitude. At the end of the day, we return back to our accommodation & have a night rest. O/N at Lodge.
Day 11: Manang to Khangsar Village (3700m)
After acclimatizing at Manang you will continue your journey for our adventure for Tilicho Lake. The trail after Manang heads out through the western gates and follows the path down the river. It then crosses the Khangsar Khola through a bridge below Khangsar and ascends by a slope to the village. Khangsar village is still in old Tibetan style and known as the last Tibetan village of Nepal. O/N at Lodge.
Day 12: Khangsar to Tilicho Base Camp (4200m) 5 hrs
The trail goes through a large path passing a monastery. You will then follow a recently built path towards a high ridge. At one point is an intersection. One path maintains the altitude, traversing the slopes towards a place where the valley is narrow; the other continues to ascend towards the line of the ridge. The former is the old path, and is much more difficult as it goes on really steep screed; the latter is the new path that goes a completely different way. You will continue along the new path reaching a high crest and descend on switchbacks carved through the screed slopes to a side valley of the main valley. At its bottom is a brook. On the other side of it is a building known as Tilicho Base Camp at an elevation of 4200 meters. O/N at Lodge.
Day 13: Trek to Tilicho Lake (5200m) & back to Tilicho Base Camp (4200m) 6 hrs
Today start-off early as we try to avoid the wind. It takes about 3-4 hrs from base camp to the Tilicho Lake. Tilicho Lake is a cold barren place in the afternoon and claimed as the highest lake in the world. Upon arrival at the lake, witness the spectacular beauty all around and later on trace the same route back to base camp. O/N at Lodge.
Day 14: Tilicho Base Camp to Yak Kharka (4000m) 5 hrs
After breakfast, the trail follows a track 4000 meters high above the Khangsar village passing through the ruins of old Khangsar. You will go through an unmarked trail leading you around and down to cross the river on an old bridge between Gumsang and Yak Kharka. O/N at Lodge.
Day 15: Yak Kharka to Thorong Phedi (4450m) 5 hrs
Today, after ascending for two and a half hours the trail descends to cross the river at 4310meters we then climb up to Thorong Phedi at 4450meters where we have recently found some good Guesthouses built. Overnight at Lodge.
Day 16: Thorung Phedi to Muktinath (3800m) 6-7 hrs
This day involves crossing the Thorung pass at 5416 meters and the hike starts from Thorung Phedi towards the pass. From it’s elevated venue, witness some great views of the entire Dhaulagiri range. After taking some breath at it’s highest point, the trail slowly and steadily makes a descend to Chabarbu to finally reach Muktinath in the evening. Muktinath has a popular holy Hindu shrine worshiped both by Hindus & Buddhists alike. O/N at Lodge.
Day 17 : Muktinath to Jomsom (2720m) 5 hrs.
The trail follows down to Ekle Bhatti and goes alongside the Kaligandaki River to reach Jomsom. Jomsom is the headquarter of the entire Manang district and a large town with many facilities. There is a government official serving the locals of Mustang. O/N at Lodge.
Day 18: Fly to Pokhara from Jomsom
Early in the morning, take a flight to Pokhara from Jomsom which is about 35 minute’s scenic flight along the Kali Gandaki Gorge and witnessing great views of Dhaulagiri and Annapurna ranges. Upon reaching Pokhara, check-in hotel and the rest of the day is free to explore around this beautiful lakeside city. O/N at Hotel.
Day 19 : Pokhara to Kathmandu (Fly or Drive)
After breakfast, it’s time to leave for Kathmandu. For the return trip, two options can be followed either to fly or to take road ways. Upon Kathmandu, check-in hotel. In the evening, we shall take you for a farewell dinner at one of the Nepali authentic restaurant. O/N at Hotel.
Day 20 : Trip concludes in Kathmandu
As per your flight timings, you will be escorted by one of the representatives of to the international terminal at the Tribhuvan International Airport approximately three hours before your flight schedule from your hotel in Kathmandu. A day to bid farewell to the glorious country situated in the South Asia. While waiting for your flight, you can make plans to venture other destinations of the majestic country in near future.
We hope you had a lovely time with us. We would be obliged to be your travel partner during your next adventure in Nepal. Have a safe flight back home!
- Airport pick up / drop off by private vehicle as per the itinerary.
- Accommodation in Kathmandu including breakfast as per the itinerary.
- Guided Kathmandu city tours inclusive of private vehicle and guide.
- Kathmandu - Besisahar by private vehicle.
- Accommodation during the trek at guest houses/lodges.
- Meals (Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner) during the trek.
- Experienced English speaking trekking guide and necessary porters (1 Porter for 2 trekkers) during the trek including their transportation, food, accommodation, salary, equipments and insurance.
- Annapurna Conservation area entrance Permit and fees.
- Trekker's Information Management System (TIMS) card fees. (Please bring 2 passport size photos for TIMS & Permit)
- Jomsom-Pokhara flight fare with domestic airport tax
- Accommodation in Pokhara including breakfast as per the itinerary.
- Pokhara - Kathmandu by tourist bus or flight.
- First Aid medical kit.
- Duffle bag, down jacket, sleeping bag and walking pole.
- Farewell dinner in Authentic Nepali Restaurant.
- All government taxes, VAT and office service charge
- Lunch and Dinner in Kathmandu and Pokhara.
- Monuments entrance fees while sightseeing in Kathmandu.
- Extra night accommodation in Kathmandu and Pokhara if needed.
- Nepal entry visa fee (bring accurate USD cash and two passport photographs for faster service)
- International airfare and travel insurance.
- Personal expenses (phone calls, internet, laundry, bar bills, battery recharge, hot shower etc.)
- Any kind of drinks (tea/coffee, hot chocolate, boiled water, bottle water, cola, beer etc.)
- Tips for guide and porters
Where to meet ?
We will provide you meeting location after reservation is confirmed.
When to go:
Spring (Feb - May) and Autumn (Sept-Dec) are the best seasons for the Tilicho Lake Trekking. The weather is sunny and warm offering outstanding views but the nights are cold and can fall to freezing in higher elevations. Winter (Dec, Jan, Feb) is also good for Tilicho Lake Trekking, the only issue is cold (obviously). Trekking in summer/monsoon (June, July) will be affected by rain but summer trek could be a boon for a keen botanist. The trekking routes are crowded during spring and autumn but during monsoon and winter the routes are not packed and you could enjoy rather the best of nature.
Travel insurance is highly recommended and is, in fact, compulsory should you be going trekking, rafting, paragliding, etc. We require that, at a minimum, you are covered for personal injury, medical expenses, repatriation expenses, helicopter rescue, loss of luggage, etc. We strongly recommend that the policy also covers personal liability, cancellation, curtailment and loss of luggage and personal effects. Please check with your insurance company that adventure activities and trekking above 3000m are covered in your policy, as some companies do not cover such things. You must carry proof of insurance (e.g. your insurance certificate) with you on the holiday; if you cannot provide this at the start of the holiday, you will be required to take out a suitable policy at that time.
Fitness and Experience Required:
Our 20 days Tilicho Lake Trekking is a moderate trek suitable for passionate walkers who can walk at least 5-6 hours a day with a light day pack. Walking in higher altitudes is physically demanding than walking in the lower altitudes; however, if you are in excellent health with average physical fitness and have a positive attitude, self-confidence, and strong determination, you can accomplish the 20 days Tilicho Lake Trekking successfully. Exercising and jogging regularly for some weeks prior to the trip is a good idea to enhance your strength and stability. Past hiking experience would be an asset but no technical skill is required for this trip. Participants with pre-existing medical conditions such as heart, lung, and blood disease should inform us before booking the trek.