Mardi Himal trek is a haven for peace and nature-loving trekkers. Situated right beside the Annapurna Base Camp trekking route, this trek offers a completely different experience. The trail is realtively new and unspoiled and hence a less crowded one too. Yet it is highly diverse with cultural insights, beautiful rhododendron forests and alpine landscapes, rivers and provides an off the beaten path experience for those who like a more tranquil time.
Mardi Himal trek offers magnificent and panoramic up-close view of Annapurna mountain range, Mardi Himal, Machhapuchhre as well as Hiunchuli Mountains. At low camp Machhapuchhre is on full show and is nothing less than spectacular. The highlights of the entire trek include the impressive peaks of Machhapuchhre ( Fishtail (6,993 m)), Annapurna South (7,010 m) and Mount Hiunchuli (6,441 m).
Trip Start & End Location
Full board meal plan during the trek
Tourist Standard hotels in the cities and teahouses during the trek
Upon our arrival at the International Airport in Kathmandu, you will be warmly greeted by a representative in Nepal. You will find our representatives with the company’s placard at the arrival gate. You will be then escorted to your Hotel. After checking and settling down, depending on the time of your arrival, you may take an outing around the impressive locale of Thamel, a popular tourist junction in Kathmandu. You could be spending hours strolling around the narrow streets of this tourist magnet filled with color, chaos, charms, and chimes and not be at all aware of it.
In the evening we will be hosting a welcome dinner at one of the most popular local and traditional Nepalese restaurants where you will dine alongside cultural music and ethnic dance. If the free day of exploration did not already captivate you, the authentic Nepalese cuisine and a glimpse of its cultural diversity will surely do the job. Note: In case of late arrival, the dinner will be postponed to a later date.
In the morning, we’ll take a short 30 min ﬂight to Pokhara. This scenic flight offers some wonderful scenery of rivers and countryside and spectacular views of Annapurna and Manaslu Himalayan Ranges. Once there we will board a private vehicle and drive to our trailhead at Kande (trek starting point), following the scenic winding highway that offers views of Pokhara valley. Kande is located on the way to Nayapul where a long version of Annapurna treks starts.
We start our walk towards Deurali through Australian Camp and Pothana. The trekking route is mostly carved inside the forest. Australian Camp is set on the beautiful hilltop that offers striking views over the valleys and stunning views of the Annapurna Mountain range. From Australian Camp, you will be rewarded with the panoramic views of the Annapurna range with your first clear view of Mt. Fishtail (Machhapuchhre) – one of the few sacred and unconquered mountains of Nepal. We stop at Pothana for lunch and then continue through the thick forest until we get to Pitam Deurali where we will be stopping for the night.
We continue your journey onward to Kokar Forest Camp. The trail here is covered by rhododendron trees and gradually progresses upward via a doublewide dirt path. You’ll likely notice water buffalo and locals trekking up as well. Before you get to Forest Camp, there are some great views on the left side of the trail.
We get up early and continue to Low Camp, which is a good place to stop for lunch. Low Camp is another small settlement in the trail like Forest Camp. Then we continue up to Badal Danda (Middle Camp). Here the forest recedes and the mountains begin to come into greater view.
From Badal Danda, the trail undulates along the ridge and after about 3 hours hike up we arrive at High Camp (3550m). You’ll potentially start seeing snow depending on the season.
To get an early head start, we will be having our breakfast earlier than usual since we have to be back at the High Camp for lunch. The trail to the upper viewpoint is undulating, and sometimes on a steep and narrow path. Our trail passes through pastures and we hike along a narrow ridge before reaching the Upper Viewpoint. The view of the Himalayan vista from here is astonishing. We see Mardi Himal (5587m), Annapurna I (8091m), Annapurna South (7219m), Hiunchuli (6441m), Baraha Shikhar (Mt. Fang) (7647m), Tent Peak (5695m), Singhachuli (6501m), Machhapuchhre (6993m) and others.
Conditions being favorable, our party should reach up to 5,000m and only the crest of Mardi Himal itself separates us from the south face of Machhapuchhre. The great ice fields and blue glaciers of the Sanctuary Wall lie below. Annapurna I, highest of all is beyond, and around us, and an arc from horizon to horizon, from Dhaulagiri to the Ganesh Himal, are a dozen or more glistening snow-bound giants. You are standing on a spot that has been your constant aim for days now. The view that is almost impossible to equal – and you’ve earned it. Whatever our achievement, by noon we will make the descend to our camp back at High Camp and from there retrace our steps down to Low Camp to spend the night.
After a relaxed breakfast, tired bodies make an unhurried descent through the shade of the forest and out onto terraced fields. This is a different route down to the upper Mardi Khola, the torrent that has been the ice and snow of the Mardi Himal. Sidhing offers a quiet stay for trekkers as it is tucked away from the busier trails. We make our way along the banks of the Mardi Khola from the hillside village of Siding, down through the lovely fields, past the simple farms and over the interesting bridges. Depending on our pace we will be reaching Sidhing in the afternoon from where we will drive to Pokhara to stay for the night. This is going to be a very long day but getting back to warm and cozy beds and hot shower is going to be surely rewarding!
Your flight back to Kathmandu is set for late afternoon, you will have some time to explore the lake city itself. Furthermore, if you had missed it before, you would definitely want to do some boating around the Phewa Lake to enjoy the unparalleled splendor of this semi-natural freshwater lake. You will also be able to explore some landmarks and popular tourist sites around the city before we leave for the airport in the afternoon.
As we board the twin otter aircraft, we bid our goodbyes to Pokhara and Annapurna foothills and its majestic snowcapped Himalayan views. The flight back to Kathmandu will give us the chance to enjoy an incredible aerial view of the mountains before finally entering the valley. After your arrival, you will be escorted back to your pre-booked hotel in Kathmandu for an overnight stay.
Your adventure in Nepal and journey to its mountains comes to an end today. You may trade emails with your new made friends and organize your photos before finally bidding your goodbyes to this amazing Himalayan kingdom. Depending on your flight itinerary, you may enjoy a few hours leisurely in the city exploring some landmarks Kathmandu before we leave for the airport. As per your international flight time, keep your confirmed air ticket, and your passport handy. You will then be escorted to the airport for your final departure from Nepal.
It was a wonderful experience knowing you and it is a privilege being your partner on this memorable journey. We would like to wish you a safe journey home. We hope the memories of this trip that you have enjoyed so much will enhance your efforts to remember us as time goes by. Take care!!