Pokhara To Siklis Trek

Pokhara to Siklis Trek is one of the best short trekking adventures in the beautiful Annapurna region. It takes you on a journey on the off-the-beaten trails of Annapurna Sanctuary’s protected area to picturesque Gurung villages and terrace farms. 

Siklis is a beautiful Gurung village in the shadow of Mount Annapurna and Lamjung Himal. The village has a long-standing history of providing capable British and Indian armies. They are world-renowned as the Gurukhas. The village residents still sustain their traditional and rural lifestyle even in this day and age. Many travelers come for this raw and authentic experience.

Pokhara to Siklis Trek

En route to Siklis, you can witness gorgeous mountain views, valleys, and landscapes. You will trek alongside the Seti River and Mardi River banks. The dense verdant trail also offers a beautiful opportunity to witness the diverse flora and fauna. You can witness stunning vistas like the Annapurna mountain range, Machhapuchre, Dhaulagiri, Tukuche, and many more. Small hills surround the charming Siklis village. 

Pokhara to Siklis Trek is ideal for all trekkers and those with limited time. You will enjoy raw nature, authentic Gurung culture, and warm Gurung hospitality despite its short duration. Let us learn more about what Pokhara and Siklis Trek have for you!

Preparation for the Pokhara To Siklis Trek

Planning and Logistics

Siklis Trek is a short, relatively low-altitude trek. It is physically less challenging, and the trails are comparatively easier. However, prior planning and preparation will help to make the trek more comfortable. Hence, we suggest you hire a licensed and experienced guide and porter. 

Guides help you navigate unfamiliar territory and ensure your safety. They offer helpful insights that enhance your trekking experience. Guides have local expertise, so they provide deeper insights about the region’s history, culture, and tradition. They will also provide logistic support during the trek and in emergencies. 

Hiring a porter can also make the trek less strenuous. They carry heavy luggage and equipment, and you can enjoy the trek baggage-free. Porters are usually locals of the region. Hence, you also contribute to the local economy when you hire them. 

Necessary Permits and Documents

Visa 

Foreign travelers must have a valid Nepal visa to travel and participate in various activities in Nepal. You can get an on-arrival visa at the Tribhuvan International Airport in Kathmandu. But if you travel by land, you can get a visa at the land border in India and China. 

You must provide a passport-size photo, and your passport must have at least six months remaining before expiry. You can get a single or multiple-entry visa per your requirements. The cost of a visa varies depending on the duration of your stay. The costs are as follows: 

  • USD 30 for 15 days
  • USD 50 for 30 days
  • USD 125 for 90 days   

You can extend your visa for up to 150 days with additional charges. However, you have to apply for an extension at the Department of Immigration in Kathmandu or Pokhara before your current visa expires. You can pay the visa fee in major currencies like USD, euros, pounds, etc. 

Travel Insurance

Travel insurance is mandatory for all trekking destinations in Nepal, including Siklis Trek. The trails pass through rural areas with little infrastructure. There is also a lack of medical facilities at remote routes. Although the trails are safe, unfortunate events and accidents can happen. Travel insurance offers a huge relief at such times. 

Travel insurance must cover medical and emergency expenses. It should also cover high-altitude treks and helicopter rescue and evacuation. Similarly, the insurance can cover other events, such as trip delays, cancellations, loss or damage of luggage, etc. Ensure you read and understand the terms and conditions of the travel insurance before getting one. 

Permits

For the Siklis Trek, you will need two permits: a TIMS (Trekkers Information Management System) card and an ACAP (Annapurna Conservation Area Entry Permit). You can obtain the permits through a travel agency in Kathmandu or Pokhara. 

TIMS Card: All trekkers must obtain the TIMS card to trek in Nepal. The card is crucial in ensuring your safety while on the trek. When applying for the TIMS card, you must provide your personal details, trek itinerary, and emergency contact information. The cost of the card differs for solo and individual trekkers, SAARC nationals, and non-SAARC nationals. 

  • Solo SAARC resident: NPR 600
  • Group SAARC residents: NPR 300 
  • Solo non-SAARC resident: NPR 1000
  • Group non-SAARC residents: NPR 2000 

ACAP: The trekking routes of Siklis Trek lie in the Annapurna Conservation Area. It is Nepal’s largest conservation area and home to numerous flora and fauna. It also has a diverse ecosystem. Therefore, you must obtain ACAP to access the routes. The fees for the permit help preserve the area’s biodiversity and cultural heritage. The costs of the permit are as follows: 

  • SAARC resident: NPR 1000
  • Non-SAARC resident: NPR 3000

Physical Fitness and Training

Prior physical exercise and training help to make the trek more comfortable and less challenging. However, during the trek, you must ascend and descend on off-beat trails and stone-paved staircases. Likewise, you must walk 5 to 6 hours daily on average. 

You can do cardiovascular exercises like running, cycling, jogging, swimming, etc. Similarly, you can do strength training and practice hiking. The exercises and training help you increase your physical strength, stamina, and endurance. It makes the journey less demanding and stressful. 

Trip Info 

  • Trip Duration: 13 days 
  • Max Altitude: 2550 meters
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Start/ End point: Kathmandu
  • Accommodation: Teahouse
  • Transportation: Tourist bus, private vehicle, or flight (as per your preference)

Sikles Trek Route

Our journey to Siklis begins with a scenic drive from Kathmandu to Pokhara, which takes approximately 7 hours. The vehicle will follow the route alongside the Trishuli River, passing through picturesque countryside.

Siklis Trek - Annapurna Region

Upon reaching Pokhara, we will begin driving towards Mardipul (1100 meters). Our trek starts from Mardipul. The trail passes by Baglung and Jomsom. After an hour’s hike, it diverts to the Seti River bank, and we will continue hiking until we reach Mardipul. 

Leaving Mardipul, the trail continues alongside the Seti River Bank. Then, we will cross a river and head toward the north, passing by Lhachok and Ghachok. As you trek by, you will see beautiful terraced fields on the hillsides. As we continue our trek, the river narrows into a V-shaped gorge and reaches Khairpani (1370 meters). 

Khairpani is a small Gurung village from which we will move east and cross the Seti River. The trail then moves downstream before ascending through paddy fields and steep staircases. It continues to climb a ridge and then begins to descend to Chyaglung. After passing the Kyabrang village, we will reach Ghale Kharakha (1810 meters). We can witness gorgeous views of the Annapurna ranges and Mount Machhapuchhre from the village. 

From Ghale Kharkha, the trail enters a dense woodland ridge that separates Seti and Mardi Valley. You will walk through the rhododendrons, oaks, and bamboo forests while witnessing diverse flora and fauna. The trail then ascends to a high ridge and gradually descends as we trek towards Nauli Kharkha (2550 meters).

The trail from Nauli Kharkha again enters the dense forest and heads towards Siklis (2030 meters). Siklis is the largest Gurung village in the Annapurna region and offers a stunning view of the Annapurna and Lamjung Himal. We will spend an entire day exploring the village and its rich culture and tradition.

Leaving Siklis, the trail descends towards Mardi Khola Valley. En route, you will pass several small settlements and farms, including Tabrang Pheding. After a couple of hours of trekking from Tabrang Pheding, you will reach Lamokhet (920 meters).

The trail continues to descend as we leave Lamokhet. From Bhainse, it ascends briefly towards Kalikastha. Thulokhote (1540 meters) is within a short distance from Kalikasthan and offers gorgeous views of Mount Annapurna I, Annapurna II, Annapurna South, Dhaulagiri, Manaslu, and Himalchuli. 

From Thulokhote, we will descend stone-paved staircases to a small valley near Rupa Lake. After hiking briefly, we ascend to the ridge separating Rupa Lake and Begnas Lake. Once we reach Begnas Bajar, we will hop on a jeep and drive back to Pokhara.   

Sikles Trek Difficulty

The Pokhara to Sikles Trek is among some of the easy trekking routes in Nepal. You can do this trek if you have a good physical fitness level. There are no age restrictions and no need for any prior trek experience. However, it does not mean that there are no physical challenges. 

siklis village

On average, you must walk on off-beat trails on uneven terrains for 5 to 6 hours daily. Likewise, you will have to ascend to an elevation of 2550 meters. It is relatively lower than other trekking destinations in Nepal. Hence, there is a minimum risk of altitude sickness. As you ascend to a higher region, infrastructure is lacking. 

Siklis Trek is ideal for trekkers of all experience levels, including beginners. Nonetheless, you must make physical and mental preparations. To enhance your physical strength, stamina, and endurance, you can undertake exercises and training such as running, jogging, hiking, swimming, etc. Also, researching the trek and its route before embarking on the journey helps to build mental resilience and a positive mindset.  

Siklis Trek Itinerary:

Look at our 13-Day Sikles Trek Itinerary for a clearer picture of the trek. 

  • Day 1: Arrival in Kathmandu 
  • Day 2: Sightseeing of Kathmandu Valley 
  • Day 3: Drive to Pokhara and trek to Mardipul
  • Day 4: Trek to Khairpani
  • Day 5: Trek to Ghale Kharakha
  • Day 6: Trek to Nauli Kharkha
  • Day 7: Trek to Siklis
  • Day 8: Siklis Exploration
  • Day 9: Trek to Lamokhet
  • Day 10: Trek to Kalikathan to Thulokhote
  • Day 11: Trek to Begnas Lake and then drive to Pokhara
  • Day 12: Drive to Kathmandu
  • Day 13: Final Departure

Tips and Insights

Take a look at these few tips for Pokhara to Siklis Trek: 

  • Prepare for the trek physically and mentally. 
  • Hire a licensed and experienced guide for the trek. 
  • Ascend to higher elevation gradually and acclimatize properly. 
  • Stay hydrated and drink plenty of fluid during the trek. 
  • Pack light and carry what is necessary for the trek. 
  • Respect the local culture and ask before taking pictures inside monasteries and temples. 
  • Practice eco-friendly tourism and avoid littering.

FAQs

Can beginners do the Siklis Trek?

Yes, the Siklis Trek is perfect for beginners. It is relatively easy and requires a basic level of fitness. Trekkers have to ascend and descend on off-beat trails. Likewise, you must walk 5 to 6 hours daily on average during the trek. However, it is physically less demanding. There is no need for prior experience, and it is ideal for all types of trekkers of all ages.

When is the best time for Siklis Trek?

Siklis Trek is doable all year round. However, the best weather and climatic conditions for the trek are in the spring (March to May) and autumn (September to November) seasons. The days are warm and sunny with mild temperatures. There is a low precipitation level, so the visibility is usually excellent. 

Do I need permits for the trek?

You will need two permits for the Siklis Trek: a TIMS (Trekking Information Management System) card and an ACAP (Annapurna Conservation Area Entry Permit). You can obtain the permits through registered trekking agencies in Kathmandu and Pokhara. NAATA’s 13 Days Siklis Trek package includes both permits.

Will I need travel insurance?

Yes, travel insurance is mandatory for trekking in Nepal, including for Siklis Trek. Travel insurance helps to cover risks that can occur while trekking. For the Siklis Trek, your travel insurance must cover medical and emergency expenses. It should also cover high-altitude and helicopter rescue and evacuation. Likewise, travel insurance also covers trip delays, cancellations, loss or damage of luggage, etc.

What kind of accommodations are available during the trek?

Most accommodations you will find during the Siklis Trek are teahouses, guesthouses, and homestays. These accommodations offer only basic facilities and amenities. There are no luxury accommodations available along the Siklis Trek route. Note that you must pay extra costs for WiFi/ internet, hot water/ showers, charging devices, etc. 

Is safe drinking water available during Siklis Trek? 

Yes, you will easily find safe drinking water while on Siklis Trek. You can also find bottled water, but we suggest you bring your own thermal/water bottle. The teahouses provide boiled or filtered water with extra charges. You can also use water purification tablets or carry a portable water filter. 

What should I carry for the trek?

Despite the season, the temperature can vary depending on the altitude. Therefore, you must carry adequate and proper clothing and equipment. Bring a windproof/ waterproof jacket, insulating layers, long-sleeved t-shirts, trekking pants, moisture-wicking socks, innerwear, and comfortable hiking shoes. Likewise, you should carry trekking poles, water bottles, flashlights, toiletries, power banks, and personal hygiene products. 

Is there a risk of altitude sickness?

The risk of altitude sickness is very low during the Siklis Trek. The maximum elevation during the trek is 2550 meters, and the risk begins at 2500 meters. The oxygen level in the atmosphere decreases along with the air pressure. Despite the minimum risk, we suggest you gradually ascend to a higher altitude.

Can I charge my electronic devices during the trek? 

Yes, you can charge your electronic devices while on the Siklis trek. The accommodations provide charging facilities for an extra cost of USD 2 to USD 3. We suggest you carry a universal adapter as the electric outlets may not match your charging sockets.  

Conclusion

Nepal has several short and easy trekking destinations. The Pokhara to Sikils Trek is on the top list. The trek is a beautiful, enriching, and fulfilling journey into the rural Annapurna region. The breathtakingly gorgeous scenery and beautiful mountain vistas add to its charm. 

If Siklis Trek has piqued your interest, we at Naata Travel & Adventures are here for your service. You can visit our website or contact us to book the trek or for further information!

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