Short Annapurna Circuit Trek

Duration: 9 Days5/5(2 reviews)
At a Glance
  • Duration 9 Days
  • Trip Grade Moderate
  • Destination Nepal
  • Start/End KTM/POK
  • Group Size 1-12
  • Max. Altitude 5416


  • Scenic drive to Dharapani from Kathmandu
  • Overnight stays in beautiful villages like Chame, Pisang, Manang
  • Trek through the wilderness of the Annapurna Conservation Area
  • Go on a hike to Gangapurna Lake or Cave Gompa while acclimatizing in the Manang village
  • Enjoy the heart-warming hospitality of the locals and get to see their daily lifestyle
  • Cross the Thorong La pass and learn about one of the most significant pilgrimage sites in Nepal, Muktinath
  • Drive along Kali Gandaki gorge and beautiful villages to Pokhara
  • Witness stunning mountain panorama and distinct landscapes throughout the trail

Short Annapurna Circuit Trek: 9 Days

Trek within the Annapurna Conservation Area and explore the hidden corners of the Annapurna region on our Short Annapurna circuit trek for 9 Days. A 9-day journey in Nepal Himalayas that takes you close to the stunning western Himalayan Mountains and the tenth highest mountain in the world.

If you're seeking an unparalleled Himalayan experience, the Short Annapurna Circuit Trek is your answer. Established in 1977 AD, this Trek has carved a special place in the hearts of adventure enthusiasts, offering a unique blend of natural beauty, cultural immersion, and physical challenge.

It is a classic trek that starts below 1,000 meters and takes you to the country's highest pass, Thorong La, at 5,416 meters (17,769 ft). The Short Annapurna Circuit Trek explores Mt. Annapurna (8,091 m), the tenth-highest mountain in the world.

The Shortest Annapurna Circuit Trek goes through subtropical forests, and you'll slowly ascend to alpine pastures and a mountain pass before descending to Muktinath (3,800 m) and driving past Kali Gandaki gorge. The Kali Gandaki Gorge is the deepest in the world. Once you drop down from Thorong La, the short Annapurna circuit trek lets you enjoy varied landscapes, including the trans-Himalayan.

The Annapurna circuit trail is renowned for its length, often spanning 18 days or more. However, for those with time constraints, we've crafted a shorter itinerary that still captures the essence of this iconic Trek. Our 9-day journey is designed to maximize your experience while ensuring your safety and comfort.

Walking past lush rhododendrons, oak, pine, fir, and bamboo forests, you will enjoy the most dramatic mountain panorama. Trekking from one valley to another, you will spend eight nights in some of the most picturesque villages and come across stunning waterfalls and cold streams.

Prepare to be immersed in a tapestry of cultural diversity as you traverse the Annapurna circuit trail. From Tibetan-like Buddhist villages with white-washed houses to narrow gullies and spectacular mountains, each step reveals a new facet of this enchanting region.

Main Features of the Short Annapurna Circuit Trek

Scenic drive to Dharapani

The drive from Kathmandu to Dharapani is very long. Also, it leads to the starting point of the short Annapurna circuit trail.

You will follow the valleys of the Trishuli and Marshyangdi rivers. The road winds alongside verdant hills and terraced fields. On the way, you will witness beautiful waterfalls and occasional settlement areas.

The later part of the drive includes snow-capped mountain views, which makes the ride very therapeutic.

Overnight stays in beautiful villages.

A low-key one of the best things about the short Annapurna circuit trek is the villages the trail passes by.

You'll not believe how beautiful these villages are and the scenery you see from each town. Chame, Pisang, Manang, and Yak Kharka are villages where you will stay overnights.

Trek through the wilderness of the Annapurna Conservation Area

The Annapurna Conservation Area is home to hundreds of flora and fauna. It protects the locals and all the natural elements inside the park.

The short Annapurna circuit route starts inside this park and later joins the lower Mustang area (from Muktinath onwards). The trail has waterfalls, meadows, pastures, streams, and rivers.

Side day trips in Manang village

On day 5 of our short Annapurna circuit trek, we have an acclimatization day in Manang village, which is crucial to avoid altitude sickness.

We take this opportunity to hike to either Gangapurna Lake (3,525 m) or Cave Gompa (4,000 m). Both hiking options have impressive routes dotted with striking mountain views.

Welcoming mountain community and cultural heritage

Unlike other parts of the Himalayas, the Annapurna region is home to people from different communities.

On your way, you'll meet Chhetris, Brahmins, Magars, Gurungs, Thakalis, and many other ethnic groups.

These people have distinct languages, cultural practices, norms, and values, which make the Trek a unique cultural experience. You can visit ancient temples and monasteries, immersing yourself in the rich cultural heritage of the region.

Cross the Thorong La pass.

Thorong La Pass is 5,416 meters (17,769 ft) above sea level and is located in the Damodar Himal, north of the Annapurna Himal.

The pass connects Manang village (Manang district) in the east to Muktinath and Ranipauwa village (Mustang district) in the west, completing the Annapurna circuit.

Visit Muktinath Temple: A most significant pilgrimage site in Nepal

Muktinath is a sacred Hindu temple dedicated to Lord Vishnu. It is a famous and influential pilgrimage site and is very important to Buddhists. The Muktinath temple is 3800 meters above sea level and has centuries-old legends and beliefs. Hundreds of pilgrims visit the site every year.

Drive along Kali Gandaki gorge and beautiful villages to Pokhara.

Our Short Annapurna circuit trek ends at Muktinath. From here, we drive to Pokhara. The route goes along the deepest gorge in the world, Kali Gandaki Gorge, and passes by beautiful villages, such as Marpha and Kagbeni.

The ride offers a breathtaking mountain panorama and ends in Pokhara. You'll have the evening free to relax and enjoy the tranquility of Phewa Lake.

Witness stunning mountain panorama and distinct landscapes.

These are the list of some of the mountains you get to see on this adventurous Trek- Mt. Annapurna I (8,091 m), Annapurna South (7,219 m), Annapurna II (7,937 m), Annapurna IV (7,525 m), Mt. Dhaulagiri (8,167 m), Mt. Nilgiri (7,061 m), Mt. Fishtail (6,993 m), Mt. Gangapurna (7,455 m), Mt. Hiunchuli (6,441 m), Tilicho Peak (7,134 m), Pisang Peak (3,250 m), Chulu Peak (6,059 m), Gundang (5,312 m), Khatungkang (6,484 m), etc. These stunning views will leave you in awe and inspire you to keep trekking.

Then comes the never-ending landscapes that motivate you to keep walking and rejuvenate your soul.

Possibility of Altitude sickness

Altitude sickness (acute mountain sickness) is inevitable during the Shortest Annapurna Circuit trek. Traveling at a high altitude (over 2,500 meters) carries the risk of altitude sickness.

To avoid this, we have acclimatization days in Manang village and have carefully planned the itinerary to ensure that you ascend no more than 500 meters daily.

Likewise, the Annapurna circuit trek itinerary balances the climb-high and sleep-low aspects, further ensuring your safety during the Trek from altitude sickness.

Our crew will be with you trekking, helping you if you feel discomfort while walking, and monitoring your health.

The Short Annapurna Circuit Trek Preparation

To prepare for a short Annapurna circuit trek, you can do day hikes and long walks wearing a backpack weighing 5 kg. If not, you can do other activities like swimming, cycling, and running.

All these activities will help you build stamina and endurance. You can also do weight training and cardio. The main thing is to focus on building your core strength, stamina, and walking habits.

Guide and Crew

We provide a local expert trekking guide for the Short Annapurna Circuit Trek. There will be another assistance guide for groups of more than eight people.

We have not included a porter in the package cost, and you can add a porter if you need one while making a booking, as it is optional.

Trek Cost and Booking

Look at the right bar of the page, where you can find the price for the Trek according to the group size. We have offered the maximum cost of 1 to 12 people.

Contact if you are more than 12 people. Special discounted prices are available for the group of trekkers.


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Today, we have a long journey to the starting point of the Trek. After a warm breakfast, we leave Kathmandu and drive following green hills, rivers, and terraces.

The drive will be smooth for the most part. Passing by Besisahar, we'll continue the drive to Dharapani, enjoying the view peaks.

  • MealsB, L, D
  • AccommodationGuest House
  • Max. Altitude1960

We'll begin trekking today. The trail climbs and descends to the west towards Bagarchhap village. From here, we ascend through pine and fir forests.

After crossing a few bridges, we walk high through oak and maple trees. The waterfalls along the way are enchanting, too.

We will reach Chame, the headquarters of the Manang district, and you will see views of Mt. Annapurna IV, Lamjung Himal, and Annapurna II.

  • MealsB, L, D
  • AccommodationGuest House
  • Max. Altitude2675

The trail from Chame ascends through dense forests. On the way, a 1,500-m-tall rock rises from a river.

From this point, the vegetation gets thin. Trekking across a river, we cross several suspension bridges and enter a U-shaped valley, Manang. Enjoying snow-capped mountain views, we'll ascend to Pisang village.

  • MealsB, L, D
  • AccommodationGuest House
  • Max. Altitude3100

We have two routes to reach Manang. Taking the upper trail, which is much more scenic, we pass by Ghyaru village.

The view is phenomenal in the western Himalayan Mountains, such as Pisang Himal, Annapurna, Nilgiri, and Gangapurna.

  • MealsB, L, D
  • AccommodationGuest House
  • Max. Altitude3440

We will spend a rest day in Manang village, acclimatizing and exploring. Manang village has a lot to offer.

We will hike to Gangapurna Lake (3,525 m) or Cave Gompa (4,000 m) in the morning. The views of mountains like Chulu Peak, Thorong Peak, Pisang Peak, Annapurna, Tilicho Peak, etc., are stunning on both hiking routes.

  • MealsB, L, D
  • AccommodationGuest House
  • Max. Altitude3440

The trail advances towards Yak Kharka. We have left the treeline behind and most walk in meadows.

You will walk across a stream, and the route ascends to Tenki village. From here, we walk out of Marsyangdi Valley and Trek northwest to Jarsang Khola Valley.

Trekking via scrub of juniper trees, we pass by a small village of Ghunsa. From here on, there are meadows and wooden bridges to Yak Kharka.

  • MealsB, L, D
  • AccommodationGuest House
  • Max. Altitude4050

The route from Yak Kharka to Thorong Phedi is challenging. We ascend north and cross a suspension bridge.

The trail goes to Ledar village and continues to Thorong Phedi, following a steep, rough trail. Along the way, the views of Mt. Annapurna III, Syagang, Gundang, and Khatungkang are stunning.

Thorong Phedi is the last settlement before Thorong La pass.

  • MealsB, L, D
  • AccommodationGuest House
  • Max. Altitude4420

Today is the most challenging day of the Short Annapurna circuit trek. Early in the morning, we left Thorong Phedi and followed an abrupt trail.

The trail gradually ascends toward the top of Thorong La Pass. It is steep and rocky, with some loose boulder sections.

From the top of the pass, the views of the mountains are excellent. Later, the trail descends to Muktinath temple for the night stay.

  • MealsB, L, D
  • AccommodationGuest House
  • Max. Altitude5416

Before leaving Muktinath, we will visit the temple and receive blessings. We will explore the premises since non-Hindus cannot enter the main temple.

After breakfast, we hop on the jeep/bus and begin our bumpy, scenic ride to Pokhara.

We will drive along the Kalli Gandaki gorge and numerous villages, enjoying the views of snowy mountains and green hills. The trip ends today in Pokhara.

  • MealsB, L
  • AccommodationHotel
  • Max. Altitude830

Is the offered itinerary not suitable for you?

Looking for a customized itinerary? Reach out to our experts.

Map & Altitude Graph

Short Annapurna Circuit Trek map


  • Eight nights accommodation in a lodge during the Trek
  • Meals during the trekking as per the itinerary
  • Conservation entry permits & TIMS permits.
  • Ground transportation from Kathmandu –Dharapani, Muktinath – Pokhara, and Pokhara to Kathmandu by local bus/jeep/tourist bus
  • Trained trekking guide
  • Salary, food, drinks, accommodation, transportation, and insurance for the guide & staff
  • Arrangement of Emergency Helicopter service (Paid by Travel insurance company)
  • Sleeping bag, down jackets if necessary, and return after the Trek.
  • Seasonal fruits after dinner while on the Trek
  • Company T-shirt
  • A farewell dinner
  • First Aid & oximeter
  • Official expenses and service charge


  • Nepal Entry visa fee
  • Travel insurance (compulsory)
  • Porter ( A porter carries 20-22 Kg, suitable for each trekker) – US $200.00
  • Your personnel expenses/shopping
  • All the alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks
  • Sweet things like chocolate bars and bar bills
  • Hot shower, internet, telephone, and laundry
  • International airfare
  • Tips for the guide and staff
  • Anything not mentioned in the included section

Add-Ons & Options

Upgrade Transport on Day 1 to Dharapani

There are options to upgrade the transportation from Kathmandu to Dharapani to a private jeep instead of a local bus. It Costs US $290.00, and six people can drive in one jeep.

Add a trekking porter.

A trekking porter carries about 22-22 Kg, and we suggest hiring a porter for every two trekkers, which costs US $200.00 for the Trek.

Essential Info

Permits for Short Annapurna Circuit Trek

To do the Short Annapurna Circuit Trek, you need some trekking permits. The permits are the Annapurna conservation entry and TIMS. Once you book the Trek, we will apply and get all these permits.

Best time for Short Annapurna Circuit Trek

The autumn (Sep-Nov) offers clear skies, plus the rains have washed away the bugs and dust.

So, autumn is the best time for the Short Annapurna circuit trek. Spring (Feb-Mid end of May) offers warmer temperatures, longer days, and rhododendrons bloom.

So, the forests are colorful, and Spring is another good time for the Short Annapurna Circuit Trek.

However, it is possible to do the Short Annapurna Circuit Trek most of the year.

Fitness for Short Annapurna Circuit Trek

You must be physically fit and have moderate fitness to complete the Short Annapurna Circuit Trek, which involves daily walking/trekking between 4 and 9 hours on a mountain path.

You reach an altitude of 5416m above sea level at Thorong La Pass. So, you had better have previous trekking experience and have good health, strong desire, and stamina.

Accommodation on Short Annapurna Circuit Trek

Eight nights' accommodations are included in our Annapurna Circuit Trek Package Cost, and we provide simple lodge/teahouse accommodation on the Short Annapurna Circuit Trek.

The rooms are basic; usually, there is just a bed with a pillow and blankets at the trekking lodge. A few have electric lights, and all have a spacious dining room—lounge. Some are very basic, and a sense of adventure is necessary.

Note: Accommodation will be on double/twin share (triple share available in most places).

Meals & Drinks on Short Annapurna Circuit Trek

Twenty-eight meals (eight breakfast, nine lunch, and eight dinners) are provided in the Short Annapurna circuit trek, and the meals are taken in lodges.

You will have breakfast/dinner at the lodge, where we stay overnights, and lunch at the lodge available along the trail.

A wide variety of Nepali and Western meals and drinks, such as coffee, tea, milk, soft drinks, and beer, are also available. Note that drinks are not included in the cost.

We suggest bringing water purification pills or medicine while coming for the Short Annapurna Circuit Trek. You get normal water for free, so you can use the medicine and drink or buy bottled/boiled/safe-to-drink water.

Insurance for Short Annapurna Circuit Trek

You need travel insurance while coming for the Short Annapurna Circuit Trek, and there is always some risk while doing the high-mountain Trek. We transfer you to the nearest hospital in case of sickness or injury.

You will be entirely liable for all the expenses incurred in the evacuation/rescue.

So, please make sure that your insurance policy covers these expenses.

Other options for Annapurna Circuit Trek

We at Outfitter Himalaya have created many itineraries for the Annapurna Circuit Thorong La Pass Trek. Suppose you have enough days and want to spend more time in the Himalayas. In that case, we have the Annapurna Full Circuit Trek, and the Circuit with Tilicho Lake and Narphu Valley with Annapurna Circuit.

Accommodation in Kathmandu and Pokhara

We have not included accommodation in Kathmandu and Pokhara in this Package. Plenty of accommodation is available in these cities, from budget to Luxury. You can easily book them yourself, or we can book them for you if you want to arrange it with us. Let us know.

How long does it take to hike Annapurna Circuit?

We can complete the Annapurna Circuit Trek in 9 to 18 Days, depending on how much area you want to cover on your itinerary.


  • Q1. How long does it take to hike Annapurna Circuit?

    We can complete the Annapurna Circuit Trek in 9 to 18 Days, depending on how much area you want to cover on your itinerary.

  • The short Annapurna circuit is a strenuous trek suitable for experienced trekkers. Suppose you know the Himalayan trail and have been trekking before. In that case, you can level up your game by joining the shortest Annapurna circuit trek with Outfitter Himalaya.

    Crossing the Thorong La pass (5,416 m) is no joke. It demands high physical fitness, patience, and trial knowledge. And for eight days, you'll walk on steep, rugged mountain terrain.

    You begin walking early in the morning every day for 6 to 7 hours. The trail crosses landslide areas, slippery passages, and snowy paths. Then, there are the limited facilities that test your endurance and willpower.

    The short Annapurna circuit trek is an incredible venture. However, it has many setbacks, making it one of the most adventurous and challenging treks in the Himalayas.

  • The Annapurna Circuit is safe, and many trekkers do it on their own. However, the trails are in high mountain terrain, so there is always a risk of acute mountain sickness or other accidents. We at Outfitter Himalaya recommend a guided Trek in the high Himalayas in Nepal.

  • No, we cannot see Everest from the Annapurna Circuit Trail as they are located in different locations. The Annapurna Circuit is in the western Himalayas, and Everest is in the eastern Himalayas.

  • Normally, we do not need crampons for Annapurna Circuit trekking in peak seasons such as autumn and Spring. However, if you are trekking in winter, such as January and February, we recommend you have one to be safe.

Client Reviews

  • 5/5

    12 Days Short Annapurna Circuit Trek

    I engaged in a month - long trip to Nepal with my mother. I started corresponding with Arjun from Outfitter Himalaya early in the year and his responses were always prompt and informative, regardless of how many questions I had.

    We did the 12-day Annapurna trek with guide Raj and fantastic porters. The porters were truly remarkable and helped my mother and me with our daypacks at the top of Thorong La pass where we struggled a bit to keep pace.

    The guide was patient, did not push us, allowed us to walk at our speed. We tailored the trip to add a loop to reach lake Tilicho, which was wonderful. The company also organized the flight into Pokhara, a few days of relaxation for us in Pokhara, a sightseeing flight to see Mount Everest, and extra days into the Nepalese countryside. What impressed me most was their energy, professionalism, honesty, and very reasonable prices for a tailored trip approach. I want to re-visit Nepal at some point and they will be the first to know so they can help me plan my next adventure.

    Highly recommend you, do not hesitate to contact me if you have questions or want more info.

    SarahFrom: Canada,May 03, 2022

    Dear Sarah,

    Thank you for your good review about the Short Annapurna circuit trek in Nepal and it is our great pleasure to know that you had good travel holidays with us.

    We wish you all the best and wish to serve you again.

    Have a good day.

    Outfitter Himalaya Holidays P. Ltd

  • 5/5

    Short Annapurna Circuit Trek in Nepal

    My wife and I recently did the short Annapurna circuit trek offered by Outfitter Himalaya, and we loved it. Even before we got to Nepal, Arjun always replied to our emails promptly and gave us all the information about the short Annapurna Circuit Trek. Everything promised by the company was provided, from the airport pick-up to the quality accommodation and the excellent guide and porter (thanks Bim!!!).

    We had an incredible time walking through the mountains. The Himalayas are something that you need to see if you haven't been there. Our guide was flexible, letting us walk further if we wanted, and stopping anytime we wanted a break or something to eat.

    The guesthouses during the trek were great, particularly the delicious food that we'd get each day, if only our local Nepalese restaurant did a proper Dal Bhat! When we go back to Nepal, we will be booking with this company again.

    CarnthecarpsFrom: Australia,May 02, 2022

    Dear Carnthecarps,

    Thank you for your good review about the Short Annapurna circuit trek in Nepal and it is our great pleasure to know that you had good travel holidays with us.

    We wish you all the best and wish to serve you again. Have a good day.

    Outfitter Himalaya Holidays P. Ltd

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