How difficult is Annapurna Circuit Trek?

Annapurna Circuit Trek is rated as an adventurous/strenuous trek in Nepal located in the Annapurna region. Since it is graded as one of the strenuous treks, definitely, one requires high-level stamina and physical fitness. In fact, one is going to cross one of the highest passes in the world, Thorongla Pass 5,416 m. (17,769 ft.) starting from 760 m. (2,493 ft.) at Besisahar passing through  3,450 meters (11,319 feet) that is  Manang. On the way, trekkers will encounter numerous ups and downs with rocky trails. Even, the trekkers will have to challenge with snow during pre and post-winter. So, if anyone is planning to do this trek, they require to have basic skills of trekking and also should have experienced short treks beforehand.

Can you do Annapurna Circuit Trek on your own?

In fact, it is not permitted by the government of Nepal, the Ministry of Tourism, to do Annapurna Circuit Trek on your own since it is mandatory to take a guide for foreign tourists for their safety. If you don’t want to hire a porter to carry your stuff during the trek, it is okay but you cannot do this trek without a guide on your own.  

Is the Annapurna Circuit Trek worth doing?

Definitely, Annapurna Circuit Trek is worth doing since it is considered one of the finest treks to do. It is because the vistas, landscapes, terrains, and mountain panoramas are just awesome. Not only the trekkers can be mesmerized by seeing the astonishing mountain vistas, but they also can experience a world-class adventure throughout the trek especially while crossing Thorongla Pass 5,416 m. (17,769 ft.), one of the highest passes on the planet. Moreover, the local culture, civilization, historical cities, and forts make this trek more worth doing.

How long days does it take for Annapurna Circuit Trek?

Actually, the required days for Annapurna Circuit Trek is 18 with sufficient acclimatization. However, some people want it to complete in 15/16 days and others wish to do it in 19/20 days. So, it demands 15-20 days to complete. More specifically, the trekking days depend on your stamina and physical fitness as well. It also depends on how flexible you want to be during the trek. Hence, if you are a passionate adventurer and own high physical fitness, you can accomplish this Annapurna Circuit Trek in 15-17 days and if you are a moderate trekker, then, of course, it takes 18-20 days.

How can I prevent altitude sickness?

We adopt a few measures to avoid altitude sickness. First, you can simply drink plenty of warm/hot water and other hot drinks like soups. Second, avoiding the local water from local taps/streams/rivers can be very helpful to avoid altitude sickness. Third, don’t smoke and drink a lot in higher altitudes. Fourth, have a balanced diet and sound sleep. Fifth, carry some basic medicine and if you feel you have some symptoms related to altitude sickness, report it to your leader immediately.

What should I do if I get altitude sickness?

In case you have altitude sickness, get to the lower elevation, take a rest and have plenty of hot soups including water. Take some basic medicines according to the symptoms. If the problems get more severe, then, ask your leader to evacuate you to the major city for further treatment.

What is the best time to do Annapurna Circuit Trek?

The time to do Annapurna Circuit Trek is Autumn/Fall (Sep- Nov). As a matter of fact, Autumn/ Fall is the best time of the year for every kind of holiday activity including trekking. The weather condition solely favors the travelers offering the best temperature and awesome mountain views. But for those who cannot make their Annapurna Circuit Trek happen in Autumn, optionally, they can do it in Spring (Mar-May).

What types of equipment are needed for the trek?

Since Annapurna Circuit Trek is taken as a strenuous trek and it is indeed, the one who is boarding on the Annapurna Circuit Trekking trail needs to carry fresh and reliable trekking equipment; we recommend you to get the fresh trekking gears as you are walking up to Thorongla Pass 5,416 m. (17,769 ft.) and get triumph over it. Normally, trekking poles, trekking pants, hiking/trekking boots that can at least hit the trail hard for 18-20 days, trekking t-shirts and shorts, a day backpack, duffle bags for porters (normally provided by the company), sunglasses, gloves, warm socks, hat, a water bottle that can help you to carry both hot and cold water, a down jacket, a sleeping bag ( often provided by the company)  and other daily used materials/stuff. Trekkers are suggested to carry some extra pieces of daily used stuff/equipment since they cannot get them on the trekking route and if they are available, they are very costly.  For further information about Annapurna Circuit Trek Equipment, click Trekking Gear Checklist.

Do I need high trekking skills for this trek?

You don’t require high trekking skills for this trek since this is not climbing. Basic trekking skills will work. However, trekkers require a high level of stamina and physical fitness as Thorongla Pass is 5,416 m. (17,769 ft.) will, sometimes, be absolutely challenging in case it is snowy. Before venturing on Annapurna Circuit Trek, one should have, at least, experienced one or two short treks or hikes in the mountain doing ups and downs working 5-7 hours a day. Actually, this trek is not recommended for beginners and they can never accomplish it. So, have basic skills of trekking, pack up the right and reliable trekking gears, accompany a veteran guide, own a high level of stamina and physical fitness and celebrate your Annapurna Circuit Trek.

How are the tea-house along the trekking route?

You know you are going far-distant from the cities while doing Annapurna Circuit Trek. In fact, Annapurna Circuit Trek Route is not a populated and facilitated area of Nepal. So, of course, the tea-houses will be ordinary and basic which you are going to use for your food and accommodation. You may have to share the accommodation. Be mentally ready for it.  However, the rooms and the beds will be fine to stay overnight. The teahouses, sometimes, may not be able to provide the food items you really want because it is hard to carry all the stuff from the far cities to the mountains. At this point, you have to accommodate it.

I don’t have any trekking skills; can I still do this trek?

At least, basic skills of trekking are required for Annapurna Circuit Trek. So, if you don’t have any skills in trekking, we don’t recommend you do this trek you don’t skill of trekking. First, own some basic skills of trekking by doing short treks or hikes in the mountain to get well prepared for your next adventure, Annapurna Circuit Trek. 

Is a tip mandatory for the guide and porter?

Giving tips depends on the tippers and how satisfied/happy they are with the service they purchased. It is very difficult to declare that a tip is mandatory. However, after accomplishing challenging duty, one naturally expects something extra. We cannot negate this fact too. So, for giving tips, we have found the way in between, not mandatory and something extra is always expected if one deserves it.