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A Complete guide to Tsum Valley Trek

14 Sep 2023 Himalaya Trip

himalayas view from tsum valley trail

The less explored and isolated Tsum Valley lies in the vicinity of towering snow-capped peaks such as Mt. Manaslu and Mt. Ganesh in the west of Nepal. Trekkers can experience incredible trekking in this tranquil Tsum Valley. Tsum means ‘evocative’ in the local language. It is also popular as the “Veiled Basin of Manaslu region”. Syar River cuts this secluded trans-Himalayan Tsum Valley. 

Tsumba people are the locals of this valley who are devoted to Bon Buddhism. The unique lifestyle of the Tsumba people, Bon Buddhism, and ancient Gompas like Mu and Ranchen are the prime attractions of the Tsum Valley. The well-known Milarepa Cave and Gumba Lungdan add historical depth to the trek. The breathtaking landscapes, lush green forests, pristine rivers, towering snow-capped peaks, and panoramic vistas of this valley are truly not to be missed. The untouched beauty of this region is a new experience for trekkers. Undeniably, Tsum Valley is an ideal destination for those seeking authenticity.

Highlights of the trek 

  • Less explored Tsum Valley itself
  • Traversing Tibetan Buddhist villages
  • Local ethnicity Tsumba people, their lifestyle, culture, and traditions
  • Ancient Monasteries like Mu Gompa, Rachen Nunnery
  • Attractions such as Milarepa Cave, Gumba Lungdan
  • Witness diverse flora and fauna traversing the Manaslu Conservation Area

11 Days Tsum Valley Trek Outline Itinerary

Day 01: Drive Kathmandu- Dhadingbensi- Arughat – Soti Khola – Machhakhola (869m, 9 -10 hours’ drive).

Day 02: Trek Machha Khola – Jagat 1340m.

Day 03: Trek Jagat- Philim Gaun – Lokpa 2240m.

Day 04: Trek Lokpa-Chumling(2386m).

Day 05: Trek Chumling-Chhokang Paro (3030m).

Day 06: Trek Chhokang Paro – Chele/Nile (3360m).

Day 07: Trek Chhule/Nile- MU Gompa (3910m) and back.

Day 08: Trek Chhule/ Nile -Rachen Gomba – Chumling 2386m.

Day 09: Trek Chumling -Lokpa- Philim gaun – Jagat.

Day 10: Trek Jagat- Divan – Tatopani -Machhakhola.

Day 11: Drive Machhakhola- Sotikhola – Arughat-Kathmandu.

Trekking permit for Tsum Valley trek

  1. Tsum Valley Restricted Area Permit (TVRAP):

TVRAP cost is dependent on the number of days you stay in the restricted area. The cost is different for peak seasons and off-season.

December to August:

For the first 7 days: USD 30 per person

From the 8th day onward: USD 7 per person per day

September to November:

For the first 7 days: USD 40 per person

From the 8th day onward: USD 7 per person per day

Note: The rates provided are without tax levied by the Government of Nepal.

  • Manaslu Conservation Area Project(MCAP) Permit:

For Foreigners: NRS. 3000 (Approx. USD 30)

For SAARC Nationals: NRS. 1000 (Approx. USD 10)

Note: It can be obtained in Kathmandu

  • Trekkers Information Management System (TIMS)

For Foreigners: NRS. 2000 (Approx. USD 20)

For SAARC Nationals: NRS. 1000 (Approx. USD 10)

Note: You need to apply for all permits via a registered trekking agent. Himalaya Trip will look after all the processes for your permits. Thus, no need to worry.

Best time to visit

Spring and Autumn seasons are ideal for the Tsum Valley Trek. The pleasant weather, moderate temperature, clear views, and availability of lodges make them the best time to visit. For the Tsum Valley trek, the early winter season is also favorable. Expect the weather to be cold during days and nights but average during the day. 

Preparation and fitness

Tsum Valley is a moderately difficult level trek. For 10 days, trekkers are required to walk daily for 5-6 hours on rugged trails which is demanding. Elevation gain is another concern. The highest point during the Tsum Valley Trek is Mu Gompa at an elevation of 3700 meters. For beginners, it will be challenging. Therefore, physical fitness and preparation are essential. We recommend to prepare physically about a month before your trek begins. If necessary do a health check-up or consult a doctor for a better trekking experience in the Himalayas of Nepal.

Accommodation and Internet facilities 

Teahouses and lodges are accommodation types for trekkers. The basic rooms with facilities like quilts, mattresses, and pillows are provided. Most rooms have power for charging devices. Pay an additional payment for the use of facilities like Wi-Fi, hot shower, laundry, and charging devices. With the Himalaya Trip, be relaxed with our full accommodation arrangements.

Foods

Full 3-course meals are served during Tsum Valley Trek. Breakfast and Dinner at teahouses where you stay and lunch at midpoint villages. Dal-Bhaat is the primary dish which is a nourishing meal set. Besides Dal-Bhaat, Tibetan cuisine, and some continental options are available. Other choices include soups, noodles, and eggs. Specific dietary needs can be accommodated upon request.

Drinking water

Drinking water during the Tsum Valley trek is either buying bottled water or paying additional costs at lodges for boiled water. Always carry a water bottle for easy filling of water, to minimize plastic pollution. Also, don’t forget to carry water purification kits for safety.

Mode of transportation 

There is no airway route in the Manaslu region. Therefore, roadways are the only possible best mode of transportation.

Kathmandu to Machha Khola: You can take a public bus or opt for a private jeep, depending on your preference and budget.

Machha Khola to Kathmandu: Upon completing the trek, you can return to Kathmandu by tourist bus.

How hard is the Tsum Valley trek?

Tsum Valley region’s remoteness, high altitudes, rugged trails, daily 5-6 hours of walking a day, and steep ascends and descends make it a moderately difficult level trek. Altitude Sickness can be a concern as you ascend. Thus, it is advisable to take acclimatization rest to adapt to the altitude. Before commencing the trek, participate in physical cardio exercises, build strength, and be physically and mentally healthy to complete the Tsum Valley Trek successfully.

mane walls from tsum valley trek
mane walls from tsum valley trek

Packing List

  • The highest elevation of this trek is 3700m. You do not need special gear. If you have normal warm clothes is fine.
  • Backpack
  • Sleeping Bag
  • Flashlight or Headlight
  • Hat
  • Sunglass
  • Sunscreens
  • 3-4 Long sleep and T-shirts
  • Warm Jackets
  • 2-3 Trousers
  • 2-3 pairs of Socks
  • Trekking Boots
  • Slipper
  • Water Bottle with filter or water purifying kits
  • Quick dry Towel
  • Soap and shampoo
  • Toilet paper
  • Tooth brush etc.

Conclusion

Tsum Valley Trek is a unique trekking experience in the Manaslu region of Nepal which is completely different from that of popular Everest and Annapurna base Camp treks. The remoteness and the raw beauty of the Tsum Valley is the major attraction of this trek. Besides this, Tsumba ethnicities, Bon Buddhism, ancient monasteries, beautiful landscapes, snow-capped peaks, local lifestyle, and hospitality add a memorable adventure in the Himalayas.

woman from tsum valley trek
woman from tsum valley trek

Tsum Valley Trek FAQs

Is prior trekking experience necessary for the 11-day Tsum Valley Trek?

Yes, prior trekking is necessary for the 11-day Tsum Valley Trek as the Tsum Valley region is remote and lies in a restricted area.

Is there an age restriction for this trek?

There is no age restriction for this trek but having good physical fitness you’re your trekking smooth with a memorable experience.

Is this trek suitable for you?

Yes, this trek is suitable for you if you have good physical fitness and are willing to adjust to the altitude.

TAGS: trekking to Tsum valley Tsum Valley trek Tsum Valley trek 11 days

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