Transportation Guide For Manaslu Trek

If you are looking for a transportation guide for Manaslu Trek, you have come to the right place. In this guide, we will provide all the necessary information you will need to access the Manaslu Trek. So stay tuned.

First, let us provide you with a little introduction to the Manaslu Trek. The Manaslu region lies in the center-west part of Nepal. It is a remote and less-commercialized trekking route in Nepal. As a result, the natural beauty and wilderness of the region is pure and untouched. It is ideal for trekkers who want to get away from crowded trails and into serene nature’s lap.

Manaslu Region is 180 km/ 111 miles approximately away from Kathmandu. You will have to drive through the Prithvi Highway to reach either the trek’s starting point. There is no airport nearby so the roadway is the only way to get there. The starting point of the Manaslu Trek can be either Soti Khola at 710 meters or Machha Khola at 900 meters.

Mount Manaslu Peak

Before, the starting point used to be Arughat. Then the road connection reached Soti Khola which has now reached Machha Khola. Trekking from Machha Khola gives you a head start but Soti Khola is still the preferred starting point. Manaslu Trek will provide you with a spectacular opportunity to trek through the remote and untouched valleys, villages, and landscapes. The Manaslu Trek trail passes through the Annapurna Conservation Area, so you can witness the diverse biodiversity while on trek.

The trekking route goes through villages like Jagat, Deng, Namrung, Samagaon, Samdo, and several others. En route, trekkers are treated to majestic mountain views of Mt. Manaslu, the eighth-highest mountain in the world, Ganesh Himal, Annapurna II, Hiunchuli, and several other peaks. The majority of ethnic groups in this region belong to Gurung and Tamang communities. So, you can experience their unique culture, traditions, and warm hospitality.

If you want to know more about Manaslu Trek, you can check out Around Manaslu Trek. Now let us dive into the details of our transportation guide for Manaslu Trek!

Transportation Option For Manaslu Trek

You can drive to either Soti Khola or Machha Khola. Since Soti Khola is the popular starting point, many choose to trek from here to Machha Khola. There are two options, i.e., local transportation and private transportation. Here are details on each transportation option so that you can decide on which one to opt for.

Local Transportation

Local transportation refers to buses and micro-buses. These are cheaper options and are a budget-friendly way of accessing the Manaslu Trek. Usually, buses are used for local transportation which seats around 35-40 people. Meanwhile, micro-buses are also used as local transportation but seat fewer people. It has seats for only 14-16 people.

For backpackers and those looking for a cheaper option, local transportation provides the ideal solution. Moreover, you can experience how locals travel while traveling in local transportation. But you have to note that these buses have specific pick, stop, and drop points. They stop at specific locations for refreshments where you can stretch your legs and taste local delicacies. Also, it is slower than private transportation.

The local bus is available from the Gongabu Bus Park. The bus departs in the morning time but there are also a few that depart in the evening. You should contact the bus station and check the departure schedule. Also, it is best to get the bus tickets beforehand.

Private Transportation

Private transportation refers to traveling via jeep. It offers a more comfortable and enjoyable travel experience. The local buses can be crowded and make several stops along the way. Moreover, it is also faster and more convenient. Traveling via private transportation is more expensive. The jeep usually seats around 5 to 7 people at a time.

Manaslu Circuit Trek via Jeep

Another benefit of taking private transportation is that you can make stops as you wish. You can take time to enjoy the drive while stopping at places that interest you. The road condition is not that smooth. There are off-roads with narrow sections. Jeeps are great for driving on such rugged and bumpy roads. Similarly, private transportation is faster than local transportation.

There are various rental and hiring services available. During the peak season, there are high chances of jeep services being fully booked. So, it is best to book beforehand. NAATA is among the few trekking agencies that have their vehicle rental in Nepal. We have different types of vehicle services with well-conditioned vehicles and experienced drivers. You can contact us for any further details.

Getting To Manaslu Trek

In this section of our transportation guide for Manaslu Trek, we will talk about how to travel to the trek’s starting point. You can use local transportation or private transportation. You will travel through the Prithvi Highway alongside the Nepali countryside.

Similarly, the starting point can be either Soti Khola or Machha Khola. NAATA’s Manaslu Trek’s starting point is Soti Khola. Hence, our transportation guide for Manaslu Trek will take reference accordingly. You can access the Manaslu trek using the following transportation mode:

Kathmandu To Soti Khola Via Local Transportation

The common way of getting from Kathmandu to Soti Khola is using local transportation. There are mostly local buses available and few micro-buses. You can catch the local bus from Gongabu Bus Park, Kathmandu. The bus departs around 7 AM but there are also night buses available.

The journey from Kathmandu to Soti Khola takes around 8 to 9 hours. But the local buses are a little slower so, the driving time can be longer. The roads are full of twisty turns but filled with scenic landscapes. The road connecting Kathmandu to Arughat is well-maintained and offers a smooth driving experience. But then onwards, the bumpy ride will begin.

There are several alternative routes from Kathmandu to Arughat. The buses can take any of these routes but the highly recommended route is through the Dhading Besi. From Arughat you can take sharing jeeps or mini-buses to reach Soti Khola.

Before COVID-19, the road was connected from Kathmandu to Soti Khola. Post-COVID-19, the road connection extended up to Machha Khola. It has reduced a day’s trek, giving a head start to the trekkers. However, many still prefer the old route and still choose to trek from Soti Khola.

Kathmandu To Soti Khola Via Private Transportation

The other way of reaching Soti Khola from Kathmandu is through private transportation. It is much more comfortable, safer, and faster to reach the destination via jeep. Especially considering the bumpy and rugged road beyond Arughat, taking a jeep is the safest option. Private jeep offers the most convenience and a smooth traveling experience.

If you are thinking of taking a private jeep, you have to know that there are two choices available. There is a green-colored plate jeep which is a tourist number plate. Similarly, the other choice is a red number plate jeep. We recommend that you choose the green number plate jeep. Sometimes the red number plate jeeps may have to stop at checkpoints.

During Manaslu Trek with NAATA, you will travel in private transportation. We will drive through the Dhading Bensi route and reach Soti Khola.

Getting Out Of Manaslu Trek

We talked about getting to the starting point of the Manaslu Trek in the above section. This section of our transportation guide for Manaslu Trek will talk about getting out of Manaslu Trek. These are different options for getting back once you finish your trek:

Dharapani To Besisahar Via Local or Private Jeep

You can take a local or private jeep to travel from Dharapani (1860 meters) to Besisahar (807 meters). The large segment of the road is under the Nepali Army’s wider road project. The project extends up to the Manang Chame. Traveling by local or shared jeep is an ideal option for budget-conscious trekkers. You can share the cost and also experiences with fellow travelers.

Besisahar Lamjung

It takes around 5 hours to travel from Dharapani to Besisahar. The local jeeps depart in almost every hour’s schedule or when they are fully loaded with passengers. The road is not in good condition due to the ongoing construction so be ready for a bumpy ride.

To travel from Dharapani to Besisahar in a private jeep, you have to reserve the jeep in advance. You will have more comfort and freedom to travel this way. Similarly, you can take detours and explore around the region. For a group of 5 to 7 people, hiring a private jeep would be more suitable.

Aside from the Dharapani to Besisahar route, you can also choose the Tilije to Besisahar route to get out of Manaslu Trek. You will arrive at the Tilijie village a day before Dharapani. So, if you decide to take a jeep from Tilijie, it will save you a day. There are local or private jeeps available for this route as well.

Besisahar To Kathmandu Via Bus or Jeep

From Besisahar, you can again get on a local bus or a private jeep to head towards Kathmandu. You can also find micro-buses. It will take around 5 to 6 hours to reach Kathmandu from Besisahar via bus. A private jeep offers faster travel time in comparison to the local bus. The road condition is good and unless there are any traffic jams, you will reach Kathmandu right on the scheduled time.

Wrapping Up

Manaslu Trek offers the best ways to experience Nepal’s pristine and pure wilderness. It is a strenuous and challenging trek. However, it is at the same time also a rewarding and adventurous experience. For seasoned trekkers and adventure seekers, Manaslu Trek will not disappoint you. You can take either local or private transportation to access this beautiful trekking route.

If you want an authentic experience of traveling in Nepal, you can travel like locals via bus. Meanwhile, you can take private transportation offers a more relaxed and comfortable experience. The choice of method can also depend on your budget and time along with your preference. We hope you find our transportation guide for Manaslu Trek useful. For more information and queries, you can contact us at info@naatatreks.com or call us at +977-9818778432.

FAQs

Is Manaslu Trek a good choice for beginners?

Manaslu Trek is among the most strenuous and challenging trek routes. Therefore, it is not suitable for beginners. It lies in a remote area and the trail requires ascending and descending on rugged and rough terrains. There are also steep sections. It is more suitable for experienced or seasoned trekkers.

What transportation is available for the Manaslu Trek?

The typical way of transportation for the Manaslu Trek from Kathmandu is through the local bus. There are also local micro-vans and shared jeeps available for the route. Similarly, you can also rent private jeeps. It is ideal for groups of 5 to 7 people. Several routes connect Kathmandu to Soti Khola and Machha Khola. Based on your preference and budget, you can choose either transportation method.

Is traveling by a local bus better or by private jeep?

If you are looking for an affordable way of traveling then local buses are the better option. However, for a more convenient way of traveling, then, private jeeps are the best. Private jeeps are expensive but are great for bumpy and off-road traveling. Local transportation offers a more authentic and local experience in comparison to private ones.

How is the road condition from Kathmandu to Soti Khola?

The road from Kathmandu to Arughat is considerably smooth with some rough areas. You will drive through the Prithvi Highway alongside picturesque villages and nature. But from Arughat the road condition becomes rugged. The pitched road will change into off-road and rocky. So, be ready for a bumpy and rough ride from Arughat onwards.

Should I trek from Soti Khola or Machha Khola?

Soti Khola and Machha Khola both serve as the starting point for the Manaslu Trek. Soti Khola is the classic and most common starting point. However, with the recent road extension post-COVID, Machha Khola has also become popular. Most trekkers still trek from Soti Khola. However, trekking from Machha Khola gives you a day’s ahead start.


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