Mardi Himal trekking route is probably the best example of ‘off the beaten path’ experience. This 6 days of challenging trek covers dense forests, cliffs, terraced farms, waterfalls and uncharted territory of Annapurna region. By fourth day you will be amazed to find yourself in Mardi Base Camp at an altitude of 4500m. This is a great viewpoint to catch extraordinary view of Annapurna South & Hinchuli, Macchhapuchare (Fishtail) mountain peaks. The trek is also famous for beautiful Gurung villages such as Sidhing where home stay is available.
Day 01: Arrival in Kathmandu (1,300m)
Day 02: Fly to Pokhara – Trek to Pothana 1975m VIA Kaade
Day 03: Pothana to forest camp (2,520m)
Day 04: Forest Camp to Badal Danda (2795 m)
Day 05: Badal Danda to High Camp (3500 m)
Day 06: High camp to upper viewpoint (4250m) & Mardi Himal Base Camp 4500 m
Day 07: High camp to Sidhing Village (1700m)
Day 08: Drive Back to Pokhara & Sightseeing
Day 09: Fly Back to Kathmandu
Day 10: Fly Back Home
Pick-up at Tribhuvan International Airport, meeting with your guide and transfer to the hotel. First impressions of Kathmandu (1 350 m) – walk to medieval Kathmandu Durbar Square and explore the beautiful complex of palaces, temples, shrines and courtyards built by the ancient Nepali kings between the 12th and 18th century. We bring you to our office and Thamel – the vibrant tourist area with hotels, restaurants, bakeries and outdoor shops. We get to know each other over a welcome dinner.
First flight to Pokhara, breakfast and drive to Kade where our proper trek starts. After 2 hours of climb we will have lunch at beautiful Australian camp where ACAP’s office to check the trekking permit. We further trek to Pothana village 1975 meter where we stay for the night. Overnight at Fishtail Lodge.
After breakfast at Fishtail lodge we start our hike to Forest camp through beautiful and dense forest dotted with red rhododendrons trees. The climbing human made steep steps are more challenging than walking inside the dense forest so there will be few place where we stop for water, tea and some cold lunch. After a 5 to 6 hours of walk we will see our camp with blue rooftops from the distance. Overnight at Gurung Guest House in Forest Camp.
We continue climb to Low Camp where we will have tea break and middle camp where we will have our lunch. The middle camp offers amazing view of Annapurna south and Dhaulagiri. From lunch place, we will continue climb for 1:30 hours to reach top of Badal Danda guest house where we stay for the night. The 360 * view point guest house with an amazing view of Machhapuchare or Fish Tail peak and Hinchuli very close.
We trek uphill alongside a ridge towards Mardi Himal and Macchhapuchhre. The tree lines start getting thinner and the area mostly consists of shrubs with isolated rhododendron bushes along the trail. If lucky, we might even come across the Daphne pheasant (national bird of Nepal) on our way to high camp. We ascend up to the high camp, which the final destination of the day. From here the mountain views are stunning. Overnight in high camp.
On our trek to the upper viewpoint we ascend and descend, and sometimes on a steep and narrow trail. 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), Machapuchhre (6993m) and others. We trek back to the high camp for an overnight stay.
We take a different route in high camp that takes us to Siddhing instead of going back down to Mardi Himal. The different route lets us experience something different and makes our trek exciting. Siddhing offers a quiet stay for trekkers as it is tucked away from the busier trails. Overnight in Siddhing.
4 Hours drive and sightseeing in Pokhara. The main activities are paragliding, boating at Phewa Lake, drive to world’s peace stupa hill and sunset or sunrise view at Sarangkot hill.
Sightseeing around Bhaktapur and Nagarkot. Last shopping day in Nepal.
Day 10: Fly Back Home
Nepal is like not home. It is exotic, it is wonderful, but it is also different. Great elevation changes, differences in customs and language, menu variations and the many other mysteries and wonders of travel in Nepal are all conditions you must be physically and mentally prepared for. The itinerary may change. You may meet unknown hardships as well as unexpected pleasures. Come with an open mind and positive spirit.
This trip features 2 nights hotel in fascinating Kathmandu, 1 night in Pokhara, a moderate medium altitude 6-day lodge or tea house trek which strives for maximum of 6 hours hike per day. The trek is non-technical and suitable for anyone in good shape who likes to hiker over mountain trails. You will spend each night staying and eating meals in rustic lodges along the route. During the trek you only carry your daypack. The day starts early, and often the bulk of the day’s kilo meters are covered in morning hours. The shorter afternoon hike brings you to the site of the camp to be used that night.
You should be in good physical shape for this trip and feel comfortable hiking seven to ten miles per day on a trail while carrying a day pack of about ten pounds. All the trail have good footing. On day we leave high camp on the Viewpoint and Mardi Base Camp ridge route we may encounter old snow, and maybe even some ice, making stretches of the trail potentially hazardous. The highest hiking altitude will be at about 4500 meter, and the highest sleeping altitudes will be at 3210 m high camp. This trip is designed to that an average hiker will require between 4 to 6 hours of hiking per day to reach the evening’s stop.
In general this is an easy to moderate trek but remember that trails are often steep in Nepal and at 3 000 m any hiking can seem strenuous. On some days altitude gains and losses of up to 900 m can be expected. Strengthen your knee muscles and prepare for some days of steep descent of anywhere up to 900 m. A program of cardiovascular conditioning such as running, swimming, biking or aerobics is essential, but try to supplement your exercise with hiking on steep hills or running up and down steps. The more you can condition by closely simulating the activities of trekking, the better off you will be. Good conditioning is essential to your enjoyment of the trek.
Remember that, the latitude of Nepal is between 26 degree and 30 degree N so it will warm at the lower elevations (short and T-shirt) while nights will be cool to cold depending on the elevation. Daytime temperatures will be between 10 degree C and 20 degree C at the lower elevations in Autumn (0 degree C on spring and winter trips occurs). Spring sees more clouds in the afternoon and the possibility of occasional thunder storms. The pace on the trek will be leisurely and unregimented. You are encouraged to walk by yourself or in small groups. Take time to visit local houses and temples, share a cup of tea or rakshi with our porters and the locals in the many chiyaa houses. Pursue interests in photography, bird-watching and botany, and sample the culture of the area you are traveling through.
Personal gear will be carried by porters. Porters can carry two members’ duffel bags. Since their load is 25 kg, this means that your duffel cannot exceed twelve kilos. The group will stay in locally owned guest lodges and will receive an insight into family living that isn’t possible for those staying in tents.
Additionally, you will enjoy comforts such as Western or Nepali food and beds with foam mattresses. All the guest houses have toilets and cold showers. Some of the guest houses have hot showers available, and few have electric lighting. The main common room of each lodge has charcoal of kerosene heaters-especially nice on cold nights. You will be expected to share a room with one or more persons depending on the number of beds in the room.
This is not a tour where everything can be planned in advance to run like clockwork. You probably won’t experience exactly what is written in the daily itinerary. Often adjustment must be made in the field. We want you to participate in the trip with the clear understanding that things can go wrong. Adventure travel does involve certain risks both emotional and physical. One has to be flexible when traveling in Nepal and have a cheerful attitude.