Manaslu Base Camp: Gateway to Nepal's Eighth Highest Peak

The Manaslu Base Camp stands as a gateway to Nepal's one of the most awe-inspiring treasures, the eighth-highest peak in the world, Mount Manaslu. This mountain lies in Thoche, Dharapani, and Samagaun Village Development Committee of Manang and Gorkha Districts. 

The Manaslu Base Camp offers trekkers a truly immersive experience amidst stunning natural beauty and cultural richness. Samgaun is the nearest settlement to the Manaslu mountain, around 2 kilometers from the Manaslu Base Camp.

The Manaslu Mountain: An Introduction

The word “Manaslu” comes from Sanskrit and means “mountain of the spirit.”  Manaslu Mountain is a part of the Himalayan range, the youngest mountain range in the world. 

The Himalayas run from Pakistan in the west to India in the east and include several sub-ranges. The Manaslu Mountain is located in the Mansiri Himal in west-central Nepal.

Manaslu is the eighth highest peak in the world with a height of 8,163m and sits 64 km (40 miles) away from the tenth highest mountain, Annapurna I (8091m). The ninth-highest peak is the Nanga Parbat (8,126 meters) in Pakistan. It is the highest peak in the Gorkha district. 

Geological and Geographical Overview

Manaslu Mountain lies inside the Manaslu Conservation Area (MCA), established in 1998, and covers 1,663 square kilometers within the Mansiri Himal range. The elevation ranges from 1,400 to 8,156 m at the top of Manaslu. 

The Manaslu region covers five climatic zones: the sub-tropical zone from 1,000–2,000 meters (3,300–6,600 ft); the temperate zone from 2,000–3,000 meters; the sub-alpine zone from 3,000–4,000 meters (9,800–13,100 ft); the alpine zone, from 4,000–5,000 meters (13,000–16,000 ft)) meadows; and the arctic zone above 4,500 meters (14,800 ft). 

The geological formations in this region indicate ancient tectonic movements, while the glacial lakes and cascading waterfalls add to the region's ethereal charm.

MCA is home to 33 species of mammals, 10 species of birds, 3 species of reptiles, and around 2,000 species of flowering plants. Notable mammals include snow leopards, musk deer, and Himalayan tahr. 

History of Manaslu Base Camp

Traditionally Manaslu Base Camp was a grazing area for yak herders and a trading route between Nepal and Tibet. The Manaslu region has gradually emerged as a popular trekking destination in recent decades. Nurbis, Tsums, Gurungs, and the Bhutias inhabit this region and show a distinct Buddhist influence apparent by the presence of secluded monasteries, mani walls, and chortens.

The Manaslu Base Camp trek route was officially established as an adventure walking trip for tourists in 1992. However, due to its status as one of the restricted trekking routes in the Manaslu region and the requirement for special trekking permits, the number of tourists visiting the Manaslu Base Camp trek has remained relatively low.

Manaslu Base Camp Permits and Visa

To reach the Manaslu region, you must travel to Nepal. Indian citizens do not need a visa to enter Nepal. However, citizens of most other countries can obtain a visa upon arrival at Tribhuvan International Airport in Kathmandu or immigration checkpoints around various land border crossings. The visa fee depends on your length of stay. The current fee for a 30-day stay is USD 50.

For more detailed visa information, including requirements for specific nationalities and extensions of stay, we advise you to visit the official website of the Nepal Immigration Department at This website provides up-to-date information on visa policies, application procedures, and any changes in visa requirements.

Manaslu is a restricted trek region, and you will need special permits to reach Manslu Base Camp.

You will need three permits to visit the Manaslu Circuit: the Manaslu Restricted Area Permit (MRAP), the Manaslu Conservation Area Project (MCAP), and the Annapurna Conservation Area Project (ACAP) Permit. The MRAP is required for the restricted zone that begins from Jagat and ends in Bhimtang. You will need ACAP from Dharapani. The MRAP depends on the number of days you will stay in a restricted area. 

You can acquire the Manaslu Conservation Area Project (MCAP) which includes restricted area access as well. You will need this permit while entering the Manaslu region from Philim. 

The cost of an MCAP permit is 3,000 NPR (about USD 23) for foreigners, 1,000 NPR (about USD 8) for SAARC (Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, the Maldives, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka) nationals, and 100 NPR for Nepalis. 

The ACAP permit cost is similar to the MCAP cost. If you decide to travel to Manaslu Circuit with us, we will acquire these permits for you.

Best Season to reach Manaslu Base Camp

There are two major routes to reach Manaslu Base Camp. One runs from Gorkha to Khanchok to Deurali to Gumda to Jagat to Philim to Bihi to Namrung to Samagaun and then to the Base Camp. The other runs from Dhadingbesi to Arughat to Jagat and follows the first path to reach the Base Camp. Both routes are around 120 kilometers, but the path from Gorkha is slightly longer.

The best trek season to the Manaslu Base Camp is in autumn or spring, specifically from September to November and March to May respectively. During these times, the weather in the Manaslu region is generally stable, with clear skies, mild temperatures, and low precipitation, creating optimal conditions for trekking.

In the autumn months, the post-monsoon period brings crisp, clear days with stunning visibility, offering trekkers uninterrupted views of the surrounding mountains and landscapes. 

The trails are usually dry and firm, making hiking more comfortable and enjoyable. Additionally, the autumn season coincides with harvest time in the region, allowing trekkers to witness traditional farming practices and local festivities in the villages along the way.

Similarly, the spring season, from March to May, is another ideal time to trek to the Manaslu Base Camp. As winter transitions to spring, the region comes alive with vibrant colors as wildflowers bloom, adding a splash of color to the landscape. 

The weather remains mild, with warm days and cool nights, making it perfect for trekking. Spring also offers the chance to spot various species of birds and wildlife as they emerge from their winter hibernation, adding to the allure of the trek.

Overall, both autumn and spring provide trekkers with excellent weather conditions, stunning scenery, and unique cultural experiences, making them the best seasons to embark on the journey to the Manaslu Base Camp. However, it's essential to check weather forecasts and trail conditions before setting out, as weather patterns can vary, especially at higher elevations in the Himalayas.



A visit to the Manaslu Base Camp offers you a chance to explore the pristine beauty of the Himalayas while immersing yourself in the rich culture and heritage of the region. With its breathtaking landscapes, fascinating history, and warm hospitality of the local communities, a journey to the Manaslu Base Camp is truly an unforgettable experience. Whether you're an experienced trekker seeking new heights or a nature enthusiast craving adventure, the Manaslu region promises to leave a lasting impression on your heart and soul. 

Discovery World Trekking provides you an opportunity to visit the Manaslu Base Camp (MBC) during the Manaslu Circuit Trek as you acclimate at Samagaon. For a Manaslu Circuit Trek, you can contact us.