Manaslu Trek information, everything you need to know.
This is everything you need to know about the Manaslu trek on one page.
When best to do the Manaslu Trek?
- The best months are March, April, May and the last week in September to mid-December. The busiest season is October. Limits are the monsoon (June to September) and winter snow and lodge closures (Larkya Phedi, Bimtang) from some time in December to late February, early March. See When to trek the Manaslu Trek.
Permits and rules
Yes, you need permits for the Manaslu Trek. There is a Restricted Area Permit which is perhaps a little out of date but is to do with the border with China/Tibet being easily accessible from here. Anyhow this keeps the numbers down.
- RAP $70 first week + $10/d thereafter.
It’s $50+$7 in off-peak seasons though this can change. The checkpoint in is in Jagat and checkpoint out at Dharapani.
- The rules state min. 2 people + registered guide.
If you are alone, then you still need a second permit of a “ghost” trekker. This needs an actual passport to get, so it is not easy. Another option is to join a group until Jagat then say a pre-arranged bye bye. Also, why not advertise for a trekking partner?
- MCAP & ACAP permits Rs. 2000 each
You need both as the check for ACAP at Dharapani. If you don’t have one you will have to pay double. Stupid, but there you go. ACAP and MCAP stand for Annapurna / Manaslu Conservation Area Project.
- 4 x PP photos
Get in Kathmandu quite cheaply for 12 or 24. Or send your guide/company a photo of you in daylight against a white wall and they can print.
- No TIMS card required
This odd permit is needed for other areas of Nepal, but not needed if you go to a restricted area.
- Tsum valley permits:
Approximately: Sep to Nov US$35 for first 8 days, Dec to Aug US$25 for first 8 days. Days in Tsum don’t count against your Manaslu permit. But double check at the time you go!
What to take with you on the trek?
- A map of Manaslu (online version here)
- Good sleeping bag – it can be cold in early spring and late November. You can buy or rent in Kathmandu.
- Down jacket, a good one!
- Sun glasses – sun is very bright, high amounts of UV. Take them off when talking to people though to make personal contact.
- Head-torch – for reading, going to the toilet, expect limited electricity. Expect to pay also for battery charging.
- Buff – good for keeping sun of neck and face.
- Wide brimmed hat – not very fashionable, but keeps sun of face and you will stay younger looking for longer.
- Trekking poles – pack them for the flat bits, great on the hills and steep descent from the pass and trail to Dharapani.
- Hand sanitizer and a small bar of soap for washing after visiting toilet. Keep healthy! Keep hands clean!
- Full kit list and suggested trekking first aid kit list.
Finding a guide or company…
You have no choice but to go through a registered trekking company to get permits. Once they have bought permits from the government department then they are on the tax radar, and will be taxed accordingly. So either you will pay a surcharge if they will indeed give permits without a guide, or better, you take a guide or guide/porter with you. This is a good thing to do for many reasons, namely giving a person or two and his/her family income. Most freelance guides are associated with some kind of trekking company to be able to get the permits.
There are some guides and companies recommended on these pages and in the comments. Otherwise, contact us, we’re based in Kathmandu and know everything about the Manaslu Trek and can point you in the right direction. We even run quality organised departures and can organise top quality private treks with personally selected guides.
What to read about the Manaslu area?
There are a couple of semi-anthropological books to be found as well as guidebooks.
Manaslu Trek Tips
- Keep your hands clean at all times. Don’t use the towels handing in restaurants! Read this about hygiene in Nepal.
- Great if you can take a water filter with you, or puri-tabs – this will save you money, and save on either burnt wood, mule-hauled gas, or waste plastic bottles.
Recommended post-manaslu-trek massage!
Face it, you will deserve it. Not only is a massage anyway a very pleasant thing, but probably a very good thing to loosen tired muscles before your flight and the new fitness regime you’ve been thinking about starting when you get home.
- Seeing Hands, massage by expertly training blind masseurs. As of May 2014 it costs Rs 1800 per hour, which is at the upper end for Nepal, but the service is great. All masseurs are trained by physiotherapists and study anatomy in detail. My friend Upendra Sunuwar who had just completed two multi-day trail races. “Running is easy, massage difficult,” he said.
- For something lighter and more relaxing, try Zen Spa in Thamel near to the Kathmandu Guesthouse.
- Don’t forget to tell them “Trail Running Nepal” sent you! (That’s us too)