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mardi himal

24 Feb 2024 Himalaya Trip

Mardi Himal Introduction

The Mardi Himal trek is a hidden gem nestled in the breathtaking Annapurna region of Nepal. While it may not be as famous as the Everest Base Camp or Annapurna Circuit treks, it offers a unique and awe-inspiring experience for adventurous hikers. This 4-day trek takes you through mesmerizing landscapes, dense forests, and offers panoramic views of the majestic Himalayan mountain range.

In this ultimate guide, we will provide you with all the essential information you need to know before embarking on the Mardi Himal trek. From the best time to visit and trekking permits to accommodation options and itinerary suggestions, we’ve got you covered. So, lace up your boots and get ready for an unforgettable journey!

1. Mardi Himal Trek Overview

The Mardi Himal trek covers a distance of approximately 40 km (25 mi) and can be completed in 4 days. The trek starts in the village of Kande and finishes in Siding, passing through mesmerizing landscapes, dense forests, and charming villages along the way. The highest point of the trek is Mardi Himal Base Camp, situated at an altitude of 4,500 meters.

This trek offers a unique opportunity to explore the less crowded parts of the Annapurna region and witness the pristine beauty of nature. The trail is less frequented compared to other popular treks in the area, allowing you to immerse yourself in the tranquility and serenity of the Himalayas.

2. Best Time to Trek

Choosing the right time to embark on the Mardi Himal trek is crucial to ensure a pleasant and enjoyable experience. The best time to trek is during the spring season (March to May) and autumn season (September to November). During these months, the weather is generally clear, and the skies offer stunning views of the mountains.

Mardi HImal Trek Video

Mardi Himal Trek Video


In the spring season, you can witness the blooming rhododendron flowers, adding vibrant colors to the trail. The autumn season offers mild temperatures and clear visibility, making it ideal for trekking. However, these seasons are also the busiest, and the trails can get crowded.

The months of Monsoon (June to August) are characterised by gloomy clouds in the Mardi Himal area. While the trail will be filled with mud and is slippery during these times, it is the least crowded time for the trek. Furthermore, you will be able to witness the surreal greenery of dense forests during this time of the year.

Another least touristy time of the year are winter months( December to February). While the temperature during the winter months are relatively low, the weather remains clear. And the highest point of Mardi Himal trek does not exceed 4500 meters, which makes it feasible during the winter as well. The temperatures during the winter are low but will be bearable.

3. Trek Duration and Difficulty

The Mardi Himal trek can be completed in 4 days, with an average of 6-7 hours of trekking per day. If needed this trek can be lengthened if you want to take it slow and steady. Mardi trek is considered to be of moderate difficulty, suitable for trekkers with a reasonable level of fitness and some prior hiking experience. However, it does not require any mountaineering skills or technical expertise.

The trail involves both ascents and descents, with some steep sections. Altitude sickness can be a concern, as the highest point of the trek reaches 4,500 meters. It is essential to acclimatize properly and listen to your body’s signals to avoid any health risks.

4. Trekking Permits

To trek in the Mardi Himal region, you will need two permits: the Annapurna Conservation Area Permit (ACAP) and the Trekker’s Information Management System (TIMS) card. These permits can be obtained in Pokhara or Kathmandu from your respective trekking agent.

The cost of the ACAP permit is NPR 3,000 (approximately USD 30), and the TIMS card costs NPR 2,000 (approximately USD 20). You will need your passport, and passport-sized photos to apply for these permits. It is essential to carry these permits with you at all times during the trek, as there are checkpoints along the trail.

5. Accommodation and Facilities

Accommodation on the Mardi Himal trek is available in teahouses or guesthouses along the trail. These accommodations offer basic facilities, including comfortable beds, shared bathrooms, and dining areas. The accommodation amenities such as hot shower, wifi are available in most stopovers but becomes limited as you ascend to higher altitude.

It is advisable to carry a sleeping bag in the peak season but blankets are available and a headlamp for your comfort and convenience. Additionally, it is essential to bring your own toiletries and tissues, as these may not be readily available in the teahouses.

6. Food and Water

During the Mardi Himal trek, you will have access to a variety of meals at the tea houses along the trail. The menus offer a range of options, including Nepali, and Western own style which is not a city’s restaurant. You can enjoy dishes like Dal Bhat (lentil soup with rice), pasta, noodles, and momos (dumplings).

It is recommended to drink bottled or filtered water to stay hydrated. Bottled water is available for purchase along the trail, but it can be expensive and harmful to the environment due to the plastic waste. Alternatively, you can use water purification tablets or a water filter to treat the water from the natural sources along the trail.

7. Trekking Routes

There are various routes you can take for the Mardi Himal trek, depending on your preferences and time constraints. The most common starting point is Kande, which can be reached by bus or taxi from Pokhara. From Kande, you will trek through Australian Camp and Pittam Deurali before reaching your destination.

Another option is to start from Ghandruk or Kyumi and finish in Siding . This route is usually chosen by those returning from Annapurna Base Camp Trek or Ghorepani Poonhill Trek as well. It offers a different perspective and allows you to explore more of the region.

8. Guides and Porters

It is recommended that you hire a professional licenced trekking guide and porters for your Mardi Himal Trek.  A guide can provide valuable insights into the local culture, navigate the trail, and ensure your safety. They can also assist with communication and help you make the most of your trekking experience.

Porters can help carry your heavy backpack, allowing you to trek with ease and enjoy the journey. Hiring a guide or porter also contributes to the local economy and provides employment opportunities for the local community.

9. Safety and Insurance

Safety should be a top priority during the Mardi Himal trek. It is essential to be prepared and informed about the risks associated with high-altitude trekking. Acclimatization is crucial to avoid altitude sickness, and it is recommended to take rest days and drink plenty of water during the trek.

Having travel insurance that covers trekking activities in Nepal if possible. Ensure that your insurance policy covers the altitude of 4,500 meters and includes emergency evacuation.

10. Cost of the Trek

The cost of the Mardi Himal trek can vary depending on various factors, including accommodation, meals, permits, group size and hiring a guide or porter. The starting price begins from USD 310 per person for 4 days Mardi Himal trek package. This is an all inclusive trekking package which includes guide, permits, food, accommodations and ground transportation. Your trip will begin and end in Pokhara. There are varieties of trekking packages you can find in the market which have different inclusions.

It is advisable to carry enough cash with you, as there are no ATMs or banking facilities along the trail. Additionally, it is customary to tip your guide and porter at the end of the trek as a token of appreciation for their services.

11. Mardi Himal Trek Itinerary

Here is a suggested 4-day itinerary for the Mardi Himal trek:

  • Day 1: Drive to Kande, Trek to  Forest Camp via Australian Camp(33 km)
  • Day 2: Trek from Forest Camp to High Camp (7.5 km)
  • Day 3: High Camp to Mardi Himal Base Camp and Descend to Badal Danda (14 km)
  • Day 4: Trek to Sidhing, Drive to Pokhara (5.6km)

Mardi Himal Trek Map

Mardi Himal Trek Map
Mardi Himal Trek Map


12. Packing List


Here is a list of essential items to pack for the Mardi Himal trek:

  • Sturdy hiking boots
  • Comfortable trekking clothes
  • Warm layers (fleece jackets, thermal underwear)
  • Waterproof and windproof jacket
  • Hat and gloves
  • Sunglasses and sunscreen
  • Sleeping bag
  • Headlamp
  • Water bottle and water purification tablets
  • Snacks and energy bars
  • First aid kit
  • Trekking poles
  • Camera and extra batteries


Remember to pack light and only carry the essentials to minimize the weight of your backpack.

Conclusion

The Mardi Himal trek offers a unique and off-the-beaten-path experience in the stunning Annapurna region of Nepal. With breathtaking mountain views, diverse landscapes, and rich cultural experiences, this trek is sure to leave you with unforgettable memories.

By following the information and tips provided in this guide, you can plan and prepare for your Mardi Himal adventure with confidence. Ensure that you adhere to safety guidelines, respect the local culture, and leave no trace behind to preserve the beauty of this pristine region.

Come and discover the hidden gem of the Mardi Himal trek and venture on an incredible journey through the heart of the Himalayas!

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