The Nar Phu Valley trek is one of the most exciting trekking holidays in Nepal, as it enters a land that was closed to visitors until 2003. Truly an off-the-beaten-path adventure that combines, remote villages, narrow canyons, amazing rock formations, and untouched Himalayan cultures. It’s a challenging but immensely rewarding route that’s ideal for experienced trekkers who want to avoid the busy trails elsewhere in the country and head into the real wilderness.
Highlights of the Nar Phu Valley Trek
The Nar Phu Valley trek is in the rain shadow of the Himalayas, meaning the landscape is much drier and more barren than at lower elevations to the south, and much more similar to Tibet. It is rarely visited, meaning the villages are simple and the landscape rugged. Traveling here is a perfect way to see how all Nepal once was, before the development of roads and modern conveniences. The trails are rugged and at times are cut high into the sides of the cliff. There are also high passes to cross. The trek in general is quite challenging and best suited to experienced trekkers who are confident in the mountains.
The Nar Phu Valley trek Route Followed
The journey starts in Besisahar, and drives the initial part of the old Annapurna Circuit route, as it was before the road was built. The trek itself begins in Dharapani (1960m). Stunning views of Manaslu (8163m) will open up on the first day of trekking, as you steadily ascend.
The trekking trail leaves the secondary road as you head up the Nar Khola (river) Valley, which was previously off-limits to trekkers. This valley is sparsely populated, with the villages far less developed, and the valley gets narrower as you get deeper in. The trail passes through pine forests and many beautiful waterfalls and towering rock faces as it continues to climb, all the way up to the village of Phu (4080m). Spend an acclimatization day here, where there are stunning views of the valley.
Continue on to Nar, the other main village in this area, which is a bit more lively than Phu. Push on to cross the Khang La (5320m). Crossing the pass will be a challenge at this altitude, and requires one of the longest walking days on the trek. After crossing the pass, descend down to Ngawal, significantly lower at 3670m. Connecting Popular Annapurna Circuit trail at Pisang toward to Chame vila Gyaru and from Chame we will drive back to Kathmandu.
Accommodation availability at Nar Phu Valley trek
While the accommodation options on the Annapurna Circuit section of this route are reasonably good, with basic but comfortable lodges, the Nar Phu Valley is much more remote and less developed. Lodges there are very basic, but there will even be a chance to stay in the monastery at Nar Phedi.
Nar Phu Valley Trek Itinerary
Day 01: Arrive in Kathmandu. (1365 meters).
Day 02: Sightseeing at Kathmandu.
Day 03: Drive to Koto (2600 meters) via Besisahar and Dharapani.
Day 04: Trek to Dharmasala (3220 meters).
Day 05: Trek to Chaku (3772 meters).
Day 06: Trek to Phu (4050 meters).
Day 07: Side trip around Phu Valley or Himlung Base Camp.
Day 08: Trek to Nar (4150 meters).
Day 09: Trek to Khang La Phedi (4530 meters).
Day 10: Cross Khang La (5320 meters) and trek to Ngawal (3670 meters).
Day 11: Trek to Chame 2670).
Day 12: Drive back to Kathmandu.
Day 13: Departure.
Arrive in Kathmandu international airport, receive at airport and transfer to Hotel stay overnight at Kathmandu Hotel.
A half day guided tour to several of historical and spiritual attractions enlisted under the World Heritage Sites. (Overnight at Hotel. Breakfast included) Permits and trek preparation day at Kathmandu.
After breakfast, a private vehicle (car/bus) will pick you at your hotel. We drive to Besisahar via the Prithvi Highway, following Trishuli River till Muglin, and now continue to follow the Marsyangdi River valley. After Lunch in Besisahar continue to drive through the dirt road to Koto. The road at times passes through the settlements of the old Annapurna Circuit. It keeps following the Marshyangdi River for the whole day. This bumpy and exciting ride will take around 5 hours. Stay overnight at Tea house.
The trail leaves the road, enters a narrow valley, leaving crowded settlements behind, and heads for sparsely inhabited Nar Phu Valley. The trek crosses and leaves Marshyangdi River and starts to follow Phu River gradually climbing into the valley. The valley gets narrower and goes through pristine forests, as the valley grows wider with views starting to open up. The long day of climb finally ends at Dharmasala. (6-7 hours)
Trek to Chaku is an interesting day as the trek passes through stunning waterfalls and towering rock faces. The day starts with a steep climb passes the village of Meta. The terrain is leveled all the way up to Junam and continues to be similar until the lower village of Chaku. The day ends with a final steep climb ending at the higher village of Chaku. (6 hours) (Overnight at tea house or Camp)
A steep dropkicks off the day and leads to the river. The trail stays on the riverbed for a while and then slowly starts to climb off the river. Another climb ends another long day at Phu. (6-7 hours) (Overnight at tea house)
A short hike up to the village offers stunning views of the valley. Although a long and exhausting walk to Himlung Base Camp also remains a good alternative. (Overnight at tea house)
The trek retraces back to Chaku and passes the village. After crossing the bridge, the trail once again starts to climb and does so for the rest of the day. This is also one of the longer days of the trek. (7-8 hours) (Overnight at tea house)
The day is a shorter one as the trek enters the higher elevations. A couple of hours climb ends the day at Khang La Phedi. A good rest is recommended as the trek now enters higher elevations. (3 hours) (Overnight at Camp)
An early start to the day to cross the Khang La (5320 meters). The day starts with a climb that continues to get steeper and only ends at the top of the pass. A steep drop in a rocky moraine then on scree leads to a new valley. The steep drop continues throughout the day and finally ends at the village of Ngawal. This is one of the longest and hardest days of the trek. (7-8 hours) (Overnight at tea house)
Following the trackback route of upper Annapurna Circuit via the old village of Ghyaru and descending the narrow valley of Marsyangdi river valley leads us to Upper Pisang one of the traditional local villages. Crossing the Marsyangdi River and following the popular Annapurna Circuit trail finally lead us to Chame stay overnight at Lodge/ tea house.
After breakfast drive back to Kathmandu with Private Jeep, arrive in Kathmandu check in Hotel stay overnight at Kathmandu.
A representative from Visit Himalaya Treks Pvt. Ltd. will check your flight tickets and transfer you to the airport two hours from your flight with the hope of seeing you again in the future. (Breakfast included)
Start Dates are your arrival date in Nepal and End Dates are the returning date from Nepal.
The set departure dates listed are specially quoted and specified for group joining option. Let us know if the set departure dates are not suitable for you- another dates which are suitable for you can certainly be added by us.
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Nar Phu Valley Trek.
Hello Himal & Team Namaste, Thank you for organizing our trek to Nar Phu valley in such a short time of only one day. We had a wonderful time in the lost valley. Our guide Khari took care of us very well. In crossing landslides or avalanches, finding best places to eat and stay he did a great job. With Khari we learnt a lot about local culture, tradition, language and music. Because of a blizzard and a lot of snow we had to change some details of our trip but Khari managed it very well. We felt that it was a great pleasure for you and your guide to make us happy. Thank you for your warmth and helpfulness. We will recommend you to our friends who want visit Nepal and we are looking forward to seeing you again in 2016. Kind regards from Sabine and Lutz Erlangen, Germany
We always try to be flexible to design the trip itinerary for our client’s needs. However, if you are not convinced as our suggested itinerary then off-course you are always welcome to customize or change the trip itinerary.
Holiday should never be about making it to the final point quickly. Along your trek, we can add days at your request with additional costs to cover guides, porters, accommodation, and food.
An average physical fitness should be maintained prior to booking a trek. Any sort of illness or recent medical problems should be mentioned while booking a trip. Most of our itineraries are prepared to give you maximum time to acclimatize and pace-setting on the treks would be done according to your convenience. If you are having regular medication then tell us before the trip started which would be better for us to give you the physical feedback.
Our main concern is your safety. We never compromised on your safety during the Trekking and all our guides are properly trained and well equipped to take care of our client's safety even in remote areas as well.
There would be always back support in case of an emergency situation like severe high-altitude sickness or accident (which is least expected), you will be sent to the nearest hospital, if possible, otherwise rescued by a helicopter and sent you to the hospital as soon as possible. Since you are entirely liable for all the expenses incurred for the use of such emergency services, please make sure that your travel insurance covers both- medical and emergency evacuation costs.
It is not a problem at all because in a mountain most of the tea houses/lodges serve vegetarian food as well and our guide will take care at the time of cooking and on a camping trek, our cook and staffs will care all about the food section.
Most of the lodges in the mountains are basic like a guest house or tea house style. In a few major settlements Lodges are upgraded, where are the possibilities we provide you with the best accommodation! Also, it depends upon the service packages.
Lately, most of the teahouses have electricity supply even with solar panels. So, charging your gadgets is not a problem at all. But charging your battery you should have to pay an additional fee (US$ 1 to 3 approx. per hour.), in order to get your gadgets to be charged.
Now a day’s most of the major village has a cell phone network connection. However, in a remote area where cell phone does not work, and even if there is not any other communication access then we send satellite phone along with our guide so you can easily be in touch with your family.
Yes, either you can store at the same hotel as you stayed or we can store your goods with us safely in our office free of cost.
The luggage must not exceed up to 20 kilograms. A trekking helper (porter) carries the baggage of fewer than 20 kilograms. This bag can be received at the end of each day’s trek and you should carry the rest of the weight as a day bag with all your money and valuables inside it.
This is a difficult thing to gauge. We have seen everything from USD 25 to USD 900 per person for guides and porters. Tipping is not required, but a small gesture of thanks to your guides and local porters. The level of the tip should reflect the level of satisfaction from and personal involvement with your guide. However, we recommend you to spend a minimum of 10% of your total trip cost for tipping the entire local staff.