Best Time For Manaslu Circuit Trek

  • Last Updated on Aug 22, 2023

Nepal has been renowned for its trekking destinations, offering an abundance of trekking choices that might feel overwhelming. Among these options, the Manaslu Circuit Trek stands out as a top-tier trekking destination, even though it might not be as familiar as the Everest Base Camp Trek or the Annapurna Circuit Trek. What sets the Manaslu Circuit Trek apart is its remote nature, coupled with its pristine natural landscapes and cultural heritage. The essence of this trek lies in its secluded character, ensuring an unparalleled and lasting adventure.

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One of the most important decisions you can make before planning your trip is selecting a good time to decide for trekking. Undoubtedly, the optimal periods for embarking on the Manaslu Circuit Trek are the spring and autumn seasons, unlike the less favorable off-seasons. Specifically, from mid-March to mid-May during spring, and mid-September to mid-November in the fall, ensures pleasant weather conditions and clear visibility of the mountains.

However, there are distinct advantages to trekking the Manaslu Circuit during the other off-seasons. Despite the colder climate, these times see the trail devoid of crowds, creating a serene environment. It is an ideal choice for those who prefer longer tracks with fewer fellow trekkers. Additionally, the monsoon season presents a rare opportunity to witness waterfalls and rivers in their most captivating state. 

Highlights of the Manaslu Trekking

Stunning Mountain Views:

While embarking on the Manaslu Circuit Trek, travelers can savor breathtaking views of majestic snow-covered mountains such as Mount Manaslu (8,163m.|26,781ft.), the world's eighth highest peak, as well as Mt. Dhaulagiri (8,167m.|26,795ft.), Mt. Hiunchuli (6,441m.|21,132ft.), and Ganesh Himal (7,422m.|24,350ft.), Annapurna II (7,937m.|26,040ft.), Shringi Himal (7,083m.|23,238ft.), Ngadi Chuli (7,871m.|25,823ft.), Himlung Himal (7,126m.|23,379ft.), Mount Kang Guru (6,981m.|22,904ft.), Gyaji Kang (7,038m.|23,090ft.), and numerous other peaks.

Remote and Untouched Beauty: 

Unlike some more popular trekking regions in Nepal, the Manaslu Trek offers a quieter and less crowded experience, allowing trekkers to immerse themselves in the serene and untouched landscapes. 

Rich Cultural Diversity:

The trek takes you through various ethnic villages inhabited by diverse communities, including the Gurungs, Tamangs, and Tibetan Buddhists. This presents an opportunity to experience their unique cultures, traditions, and lifestyles.

Budi Gandaki River Gorge:

The trail follows the Budi Gandaki River and passes through deep gorges and lush valleys. The contrast between the steep rocky cliffs and the rushing river below creates a breathtaking and dramatic landscape.

Larkya La Pass:

The trek culminates in crossing the challenging Larkya La Pass (5106m.|16751ft.). Experienced hikers will find the trek through this high-altitude pass to be a gratifying expedition, as it provides breathtaking 360-degree vistas of the nearby mountain summits and scenery.

Less Crowded Route:

The Manaslu Trek stands as an excellent alternative to the more renowned routes like the Everest Base Camp and Annapurna Circuit Treks. While it is gaining popularity, it still receives fewer trekkers than other well-known routes, preserving its pristine environment.

The Best Months for the Manaslu Circuit Trek

Selecting the right timeframe for your trek to the remarkable destination of Manaslu Circuit Trek is crucial to ensuring an enjoyable vacation. The months of June, July, and August, marked by monsoon rains, should be avoided. During this period, the trekking paths become muddy and precarious, while dense clouds hide the splendid mountain panoramas.

For a rewarding journey, opt for the optimal months outside of the rainy season. From March to May and again from September to November, the weather remains stable, offering clear visibility and awe-inspiring mountain vistas. 

It's worth noting that the Manaslu Expedition typically commences in late April or early May, allowing the chance to encounter climbers and vibrant base camp setups if you choose to travel during these times.

Manaslu Circuit Trek in Spring Season

Nepal experiences its spring season during March, April, and May, a prime period for embarking on the Manaslu trek. Following winter, temperatures gradually rise, creating more comfortable conditions.

Let's explore in more detail the experience of the Manaslu Circuit Trek during each month of the Spring Season.

Manaslu Circuit Trek in March  

Trekking in March offers captivating scenery as the surrounding peaks retain significant snow cover, enhancing the visual appeal. The trek is exceptionally stunning during this time, drawing a considerable number of fellow trekkers, as it aligns with Nepal's trekking season. Tea houses, offering accommodations and meals, are in operation, though reservations should be confirmed due to potential high demand.

  • During the daytime, temperatures usually span from 2°C to 8°C, while nights might see a drop to as low as -6°C. 
  • The likelihood of experiencing rainfall or snowfall is minimal. 
  • Key features are the official onset of spring and the presence of steady, foreseeable weather conditions.

Manaslu Circuit Trek in April

Spring showcases the zenith of local flora and fauna. Lush greenery blankets the forests, while vibrant flowers exhibit their most brilliant hues. April, in particular, boasts an enchanting display of Rhododendron flowers. 

  • Daytime temperatures hover around 4°C to 12°C, with mornings and nights being relatively mild. 
  • Rainfall is improbable. Longer daylight hours offer excellent visibility. 
  • Noteworthy features enclose clear skies, vibrant paths adorned with greenery, and blossoming Rhododendrons, coinciding with the celebration of Nepali New Year.

Manaslu Circuit Trek in May

As May arrives, Nepal's spring comes to an end, marking the conclusion of the seasonal trekking period. Trails become less crowded, although tea houses continue their services. Despite its lesser popularity, May remains a viable period for undertaking the Manaslu Circuit trek. It offers a distinctive trekking experience.

  • The warmest month of the year sees daytime temperatures ranging from 4°C to 30°C. 
  • Possibility of early monsoon Rainfall. The atmosphere is fairly dry, often accompanied by a refreshing breeze that makes walking comfortable. 
  • Noteworthy traits include consistently warm and stable weather, accompanied by ample sunshine.

Manaslu Circuit Trek in Autumn Season

Nepal's autumn season spans from September through November and is widely regarded as the optimal period for embarking on the Manaslu trek. This time frame is favored due to its pleasant temperatures and stunning mountain vistas, drawing a significant number of trekkers to the Manaslu region. The main challenge lies in securing accommodations and reservations, which can be conveniently managed by pre-arranging through our services. We can customize an ideal schedule to match your preferences and ensure a seamless trip. 

Let's explore in more detail the experience of the Manaslu Circuit Trek during each month of the Autumn season.

Manaslu Circuit Trek in September

In Nepal, the month of September stands out as one of the most favorable periods for engaging in trekking activities. It is the first month of Autumn which is the best considered season for peak climbing and trekking. After the monsoon, the mild temperatures and clear weather begin to prosper. The temperature becomes comfortable for hiking, and the equal day-night length will have a greater impact on your hiking and resting balance. 

  • Temperatures are expected to stay between 5°C and 7°C. 
  • Rainfall is likely in early September, with minimal chances of snowfall. 
  • Key attributes include the conclusion of the monsoon period, decreased humidity, and the initiation of autumn.

Manaslu Circuit Trek in October

October stands as the peak period for trekking in Nepal, particularly for trekking to Manaslu Circuit. This month, part of the Autumn season, strikes a perfect balance. The weather remains mild and ideal for trekking throughout October. A consistent feature of this month is the clear, rain-free skies. The ambiance exudes tranquility, justifying the expenses of the trek. It's important to note that this is also a festive period in Nepal, attracting local tourists. However, this vogue translates to crowded trails and fully occupied tea houses. To handle this, it's recommended to secure accommodations well in advance if you're planning a Manaslu circuit trek in October.

  • Temperatures are expected to stay between 12°C and 15°C. 
  • Minimal chances of rainfall and snowfall. 
  • Key attributes: Peak of the fall season, Extremely arid weather, Festive period in Nepal

Manaslu Circuit Trek in November

The month of November marks the end of the Autumn season and is another excellent time to go trekking. However, the second half of November has some drawbacks due to the quickly approaching winter. The skies will be clear, and the days will be sunny but cool. There won't be any rainfall in the upcoming month, but the nights will feel cold, and there's a possibility of snowfall in higher areas. Overall, early November remains an excellent period for embarking on the Manaslu Circuit Trek due to the favorable weather conditions.

  • During the daytime, temperatures usually span from 10°C to 13°C, while nights might see a drop to as low as -6°C. 
  • No rainfall was experienced, but there are chances of snowfall. 
  • Key attributes: This period marks the end of autumn in a dry climate. It corresponds to the festival months in Nepal. One can feel the drop in temperature.

Manaslu Circuit Trek in Winter Season / Cold Season

Exploring the Manaslu Circuit during the winter months of December, January, and February offers a unique experience for those seeking tranquility, frosty nights, and snow-covered landscapes.

Particularly around mid-December, numerous teahouses are shut at higher elevations, although some locals remain available to assist even in these cold conditions.

In January, you can experience extremely cold temperatures, accompanied by mostly clear skies. The trails are covered in snow, and given that it's the chilliest month of the year, enduring the biting cold nights requires significant effort. As a result, only a limited number of people manage to journey along the Manaslu Circuit in January. Given the closure of many teahouses, bringing along a tent and sleeping bags is essential.

February exhibits little temperature variation from January. However, towards the end of the month, a handful of lodges begin to reopen, providing a bit more accommodation options.

  • During the daytime, temperatures usually span from -15°C to 15°C in the span of these three months. 
  • Chances of rain are slim, while the likelihood of snowfall is quite high.
  • The weather is characterized by snowfall, freezing temperatures, and unpredictable conditions, accompanied by relatively brief daylight hours.

Manaslu Circuit Trek in Summer Season / Rainy Season

June, July, and August witness significant rainfall, especially at lower elevations. However, this doesn't mean there's continuous rain all day long. Rainfall usually happens in the morning, late afternoon, or at night daily. The trails become muddy during this period, and you'll come across an abundance of leeches and frogs. Additionally, the monsoon season experiences natural disasters and pathways blocked due to floods and landslides. Opting for the Manaslu base camp trek during the monsoon season is a good choice if you wish to avoid crowds during the peak tourist season.

  • During the daytime, temperatures usually span from 5°C to 25°C in the span of these three months. 
  • There are intense downpours of rain, increasing the chances of landslides and flooding. 
  • The path might be slick and inhabited by leeches.

Food during the Manaslu Circuit Trek

While undertaking the Manaslu Circuit Trek, you'll be provided with three daily meals prepared and served by the teahouse proprietors. There's a diverse range of dishes available for your selection. We strongly advise including dal bhat in at least one meal as it offers substantial energy and nourishment during the trek. Additionally, it's the most cost-effective choice.

Manaslu Trek Permit Costs

Manaslu Trekking region has set different pricing in different seasons.

  • From September to November, the Special Restricted Manaslu permit trek costs $100 for the first 7 days and $15 for each additional day. 
  • From December to August, the Special Restricted Manaslu permit trek costs $75 for the first 7 days and $10 for each additional day. 
  • Manaslu Conservation Area Permit (MCAP) costs NPR 3000 
  • Annapurna Conservation Area Permit (MCAP) costs NPR 3000
  • Trekkers Information Management Systems (TIMS) costs NPR 2000

Final Say – The ideal time for Manaslu Circuit Trek

  • For those seeking breathtaking mountain views and the festive atmosphere of Nepal, the ideal window is between October and November.
  • If your preference is to experience vibrant trails adorned with a variety of wildflowers, then April and May are the recommended months.
  • Travelers who are open to colder temperatures and yearn for snowy landscapes should consider February, particularly in the lower regions.
  • If you're planning to travel during the summer season, consult your travel planner for suitable preparations and avoid the peak monsoon period.

Comprehending these particulars as above can assist you in preparing for your trek to the Manaslu region. It's advisable to plan in advance, procure appropriate trekking equipment, and make necessary arrangements for food and accommodation.

Nepal Nirvana Trails is committed to providing you with an exceptional trekking journey. Embark on this incredible adventure with the confidence that our skilled and experienced team will be by your side to offer assistance whenever needed. Additionally, we can support you in crafting a tailor-made trekking package to ensure a truly unique experience. We look forward to helping you make long-lasting memories during your stay.

Benjila Dhital

Benjila Dhital

Benjila has been an integral part of the Nepal Nirvana Trails as she writes passionately and learns about new spots, people, cultures, and languages. With a Bachelor's Degree from the reputed college NATHM in Bachelors of Tourism and Travel Management lately, she has been engaging in authoring web content and familiarizing new locations with the tourist out there.