Annapurna the Incredible Trekking Region

“Home to some of the  world class trekking routes.”

The north west part of Nepal, Annapurna Region is one of the most visited region and is considered Heaven by many ongoing travellers & nature lovers. Ranging from sodden bamboo forests to windswept desert, this mostly isolated landscape is home to some of the oldest buddhist communities & dramatic high mountains(including the 10th highest mountain).

The Famous city Pokhara is the gateway to Annapurna Region. Either take 6 to 7 hours bus ride or a 30 min flight for kathmandu, Pokhara welcomes you with its beautiful lakes and towering mountains.

Trek in the annapurna region all starts and end in pokhara.

Talking about the climate, being a high altitude region Annapurna Region is very cold in winter with snowfall and low in temperature. Nothing much changes in summer, the days are cooler (warmer) in comparison to winter but night can get cold and chilly.

As mentioned earlier the Annapurna region is home to several world-class treks & one of the  most desired trekking destinations in the world. Let’s start with two of the most popular and most visited trekking destination of this region, Annapurna Circuit & Annapurna Base Camp.

Annapurna Circuit 

Annapurna Circuit is considered one of the best trek in the world. The trek around the Annapurna massif is all about Nepalese village lifestyle, unbelievably challenging yet mesmerizingly beautiful landscape and above all pristine Himalayas. Annapurna circuit trek takes you to four different regions,  Lamjung and Myagdi which are of the lower elevations whereas Manang and Mustang are of the higher elevations.

This 100 miles trek passes from the world’s deepest gorge between two 8,000-plus meter peaks to 5416 meters elevated highland  Thorung La Pass.

Popular side Hikes

Tilicho lake, annapurna region

Tilicho Lake

One of the most popular side hike destination of the Annapurna Circuit, Tilicho Lake is situated at an altitude of 4,919 metres (16,138 ft) in Manang district. It is said to be one of the highest lake in the world and takes additional 2 to 3 days hike from Manang.

Naar phu valley, Annapurna Region

Naar Phu Valley

Opened to foreigners in 2002, Naar-Pho Valley has a total Tibetan character. Phugaon and Naar the two main villages of Naar-Pho are both located at over 4000 meter altitude. Listed as a restricted area trekking permit and travel guide are compulsory which are most likely to be arranged by your trekking agency. A side trip to Naar-Pho requires a total of 9 days if two nights are spent in both Phugaon and Naar.

Annapurna Circuit in Picture.

Annapurna Base Camp 

One of the most regularly visited and most loved trekking trails in Nepal, the Annapurna Base Camp trekking accommodates the incredible taste of Trekking in the Himalayas. The combination of easy walking (some steep uphill climbing & crossing narrow bridge),out of the world scenery and mix of cultures are unmatched by any other trekking routes in Nepal.

The Annapurna Base Camp (ABC) is an elevated glacial basin located in the central Himalayas of Nepal. Most of the trail you tread during this trek is through the protected region of Annapurna Conservation Area Project (ACAP).  The other highlight of the trek is the Annapurna sanctuary, the magical landscape around the Annapurna base camp.

Read Annapurna Base Camp Trek Guide.


Most of the trekking routes of Annapurna Region goes through 7,629 kmAnnapurna Conservation area, which is the largest protected area of Nepal. Among the three major trekking routes (Annapurna Circuit & Annapurna Base Camp) Jomsom -Muktinath is another popular destination.

JomsomMuktinath heading north from pokhara reveals Nepal’s spectacular diversity at its finest. Jomsom (2700 meters)beautiful windy valley nestles in the rain shadows of Mt. Dhaulagiri, whereas Muktinath is a sacred place both for Hindus and Buddhists located in Muktinath Valley ( 3,710 meters)at the foot of the Thorong La mountain pass.

Kali Gandaki Muktinath Trek takes you to the foothills of majestic Dhaulagiri and Annapurna catering diverse highlights of nature and culture from mesmerizing landscapes, scenic Himalayan view and the unique culture.


Not to forget Mustang “former Kingdom of Lo” bordering Tibet is also geographically a part of Annapurna Region.

Mustang remained a mystery for centuries until it was opened for tourist in 1992.If you are craving for something wilderness and exploration the long lost kingdom will surely fascinates you. Mustang is a unique experience taking you beyond the Annapurna and Dhaulagiri, traveling across desert like landscape, barren ridges, deep canyon, cliffs and valleys.

Read Upper Mustang Trek Guide.


Annapurna Region is not just limited to long and tiring trekking trails. Ghorepani Poonhill is the most wonderful short trek with spectacular views of Annapurna.

Panoroma-Annapurana

View from Poon Hill with Annapurna to the right and Dhaulagiri on the left

Ghorepani Poonhill trek is another magnificent addition to Annapurna Region, this trek allows you spectacular mountains sceneries (virgin Fishtail, majestic Annapurna, grand Dhaulagiri and less known beauty Nilgiri and Dhampus Peaks), opportunities to experience the hospitality of Gurung ethnics, lets you be a part of their celebrations and understand how beautiful a life can be, regardless of tough geography in the vicinity.


Easily accessible, plentiful of guest house, unspoiled beauty & its vast bio-diversity with both high mountains and lowland villages; trekking in the region offers unique exposure and experience.


Get Free Advice from Travel Experts

Advertisements

Nepal Travel Guide for 2016

If you are looking for something adventurous, something exciting then Nepal is your perfect destination. Nepal fascinates you with its environmental and cultural diversity like no any other countries in the world. This diverse country has something for everyone regardless of what the interests, let’s say a surprise stored for you in every corner.

The recent April 2015 earthquake has taken thousand of lives made many homeless and many ancients building turned in rebels. Now almost after eight months, Nepal and Nepalese people are back on its feet living a normal life.

Again the question IS Nepal Safe? hits you hard and thinking. Should I or should I not go to Nepal?  Lets us remind u!!

  • Many countries have already uplifted its Travel restriction to Nepal.
  • Thousands of tourist/travelers have visited Nepal after the earthquake according to Nepal Tourism Board (NTB) & TAAN.
  • Nat Geo Traveler Magazine and Forbes, the two leading magazine have listed Nepal on its “Cool list” for 2016.

So, add thrill and adventure to your holiday with some of these must to activities.

Explore the remarkable gems of the Himalayas

Nepal is an only one of its kind trekking destination. Trekking in Nepal is the best way to discover Nepal’s indomitable mixture of natural and cultural wonders while walking on pristine trails of the Himalayas. Almost all of the trekking routes in Nepal take you right through the majestic Himalayas while you walk close to the ethnic villages in the region, explore their rich culture and consider the unique landscape.

Trekking in Nepal is doable in all seasons, depending on which area you want to go and presents you with varying degree of challenges without reducing the thrill. However, the most popular seasons to trek in Nepal are Pre-monsoon (March to June) and Post-monsoon (September to November).

Witness the architectural and cultural marvels

Though holiday in Nepal refers to trekking, insightful tour around Nepal during the visit is a must do. The culture of Nepal is rich and unique. The cultural heritage of Nepal has evolved over the centuries. This multidimensional heritage encompasses the diversities of Nepal’s ethnic, tribal, and social groups. With 8 heritage site listed in the UNESCO Cultural heritage site.

Age, physical condition and time are not obstacles to explore Nepal. Note that not all but only few cultural sites have been affected by the earthquake. The affected area is barred and lanes have been marked for the safety of the visitors. You can still walk around and visit many other temples and historic buildings that remain throughout the country.

Up close and personal with the Mountains

Home to the highest mountain of the world Mt. Everest, Nepal has always attracted mountaineering enthusiasts, amateur and experienced alike. If you are upto the challenge then Nepal is right place. Among the identified 1310 peaks above 6000 meter, one quarter are officially opened for mountaineering activities. Peak climbing in Nepal gives you the experience of both trekking and mountaineering.

The growing popularity of the trekking peaks in Nepal is down to the fact that visitors not only get to trek some of the world’s popular trails, but also experience the adventure of mountaineering. Depending upon the amount of time and climbing experience you have, you can choose a peak that best suits you.

Relive the adventure

Nepal is a perfect playground for those adventure junkies who love blood pumping, heart racing, breathtaking, and thrilling adventure. Nepal caters some of the best of best adventures which will surely get your adrenalin going.

Be apart of a fascinating tales to tell your friends as you experience the thrills in the land of adventures.

Keeping close to the nature

Amidst the hype of the miraculous thrill of the Himalayan terrain and the beautiful yet challenging peaks, it is easy to forget that Nepal has a total of 14 national parks and wildlife reserves. Wildlife diversity is a notable feature of Nepal. Home for some of the mostly endangered species in the subcontinent, terai region of Nepal has some of the most exciting jungle safari destinations of the Indian subcontinent.

Experience the wilderness on a back of an elephant or a four wheel jeep jungle safari ride. Keeping up close with the nature can be perfect holidaying option.


Last Minute Deals. Save Big! Enjoy More!

Offer on some of  the best Outdoor Destinations!!  (till end of July 2016)

read-more

Get Free Advice from Travel Experts

Buddhist Prayer Wheel

Prayer Wheel at Boudhanath Stupa

Prayer Wheel at Boudhanath Stupa

Prayer wheel cylindrical in shape (Mani Wheels in Tibet) is a devices used for spreading spiritual blessing and well being.  Mostly made from metal or wood, the prayer wheel contains rolls of prayer (mantra) OM Mani Padme Hum, written numerous times on paper and the same prayer is decorated outside of the cylinder in an ancient Tibetan and Indian scripts. Used mostly by the Buddhists of Nepal and Tibet during prayer to acquire good karma and decontaminate bad karma, and also is believed to help them develop compassion and wisdom by spinning the prayer wheel.


Origin

Three Buddha Park in Swambunath

In the center the Amitaba Buddha statue, at his left side Avalokiteshvara and to the right Padmasambhava.

According to the Tibetan tradition the prayer wheel was introduced by a famous Indian Buddhist scholar Arya Nagarjuna. The Tibetan text also says the prayer wheel was brought to Tibet by the well renowned eight century Indian Buddhist teacher Padmasambhava, and afterward practiced by the great Indian Buddhist masters Tilopa and Naropa and later passed it on to the Tibet’s well known yogis. Since then the Prayer Wheel has been passed on to numbers of enlightened teachers all around the world.


Symbolism and Spiritual Belief of the wheel

A Tibetan woman in Kathmandu with her prayer wheel

A Tibetan woman in Kathmandu with her prayer wheel

The Buddhist or Tibetan prayer wheel symbolizes the universal law and reflection of that law in the morals of human. The rim of the wheel represents the cycle of birth, death and rebirth; a cycle of suffering that Buddhists endeavors to set them free from. The core of the wheel indicates freedom, while the spokes symbolize the various pathways to achieve liberation. There are in general eight spokes or more, in multiples of eight, refer to the noble eight fold path, the way to the end of suffering as taught by the Lord Gautam Buddha.

Buddhists, mainly within the Tibetan tradition have a belief just touching and turning a prayer wheel brings inconceivable purification and hoards implausible merit. The Prayer Wheel is a physical expression of recitation of mantra, as the spinning of the wheel and the round movement of the written mantra inside and out is the same to the speech of the human voice. The rotation of the wheel is a form of speech for the turning of the wheel of Dharma, described as the Buddha’s first teaching. Always spun clockwise, It is also believed turning of the prayer wheels helps gain insight and compassion.


Om Mane Padme Hum the Mantra

The colored mantra in Tibetan with the six syllables

Colored mantra in Tibetan with the six syllables.

The prayer (mantra) on the outside and inside of prayer wheels is a six-syllable mantra has several versions. The literal translation is “the jewel in the lotus,” or “praise to the jewel in the lotus” or, basically, the “jeweled lotus”.


Types of Prayer wheels

Mani Wheel: Also known as hand wheel the Mani wheel has a cylindrical shape mounted on a metal shaft or pin set into a wooden or metal handle that rotates on a round bearing which are usually made of Turbinella (conch) Shell. The cylinder is attached with chain, the weighted chain allows itself to spin by slight rotation of the wrist.

Water Wheel: A prayer wheel that is turned by flowing water. It is said the water that is touched by the wheel is said to become sacred and carries its purifying power into all life.

Fire Wheel: Turned by the heat of a candle or electric light. It is believed that the light released from the prayer wheel cleanses the negative karmas.

Wind Wheel: Turned by wind. The wind that touches the prayer wheel helps ease the negative karma of those it touches

Stationary prayer Wheel: Many monasteries and Buddhist pilgrimage have large, fixed, metal wheels set side by side in a row. Devotees can turn the wheels simply by sliding their hands over each one.

Electric dharma Wheel: “Thardo Khorlo,” as these electric wheels are occasionally known, includes one thousand copies of the mantra of Chenrezig and many copies of other mantra, and are powered by electric motors.


Types of Prayer wheels in Pictures


Get Free Advice from Travel Experts

Boudhanath Stupa: Sacred desitination in Nepal

Boudhanath Stupa

Boudhanath Stupa

Boudhanath Stupa also knows as (Boudha, Bouddhanath or Baudhanath or the Khasa Caitya) is one of the skylines dominating stupa in Kathmandu Nepal.  Also famous for the holiest Tibetan Buddhist pilgrimage temple outside Tibet the Boudhanath Stupa is the center of Tibetan culture and rich in Buddist symbolsim.

About 11 km from the center and northeastern outskirts of Kathmandu, the Simple, immense and influential stupa rises above the numerous buildings with its painted eyes gazing earnestly over the countryside.


History

Numerous fascinating myths are told on the subject of the construction of the Boudhanath Stupa. The first stupa at Bodhnath was built sometime after AD 600, when the Tibetan king, Songtsen Gampo, changed to Buddhism. According to legends, the king constructed the stupa as an act of apology after unintentionally killing his father. Sadly the frist stupa was demolished by the Mughal in the 14 Century and the current stupa was constructed.


What you see in Boudhanath Stupa

The form and the alternated squares and circles represent a three-dimensional mandala, which is comprised of conceptual religious concepts and seen in all Tibetan mandalas. Every piece has symbolic significance from the base, dome; square harmika, spire, and pinnacle represent the five elements (earth, water, fire, air and ether). The 13 rings from the base to the summit represent the path to enlightenment. The stupa is surrounded by an irregular 16-sided wall with 108 small images of the Dhyani Buddha Amitabha (108 is an auspicious number in Tibetan culture) and a ring of prayer wheels with the mantra of Avalokiteshvara – Om Mani Padme Hum which is carved on it.

The base of the stupa consists of three big platforms, lessening in size. These platforms represent Earth. Walking around the platform you can enjoy the perfect view of beautiful mountain range while in the background you can listen to the chant of Buddhist devotes doing kora “walking around the stupa while praying”. The two round in shape plinths which symbolizes water support the hemisphere of the stupa. The question mark symbol type which denotes the nose is actually Nepali character of Number 1, which represents the Unity and the only way to reach enlightenment. The 13 steps square tower represents the ladder of enlightenment and the top of the tower is cover with gold canopy which represent air.

Flag prayers tied to the stupa waves in the wind which carries mantra and heavenward. The Boudhanath stupa is surrounded with narrow alley and streets which are lined with monastery, and streets vendors. The base of the stupa is open from 5am to 6pm and till 7pm in the summer.


♦ Gallery ♦ 


Get Free Advice from Travel Experts