Between Jomsom-Muktinath and the Annapurna Base Camp Trek trail, the Khopra Danda Trek presents an eco-friendly nature alternative. The Panorama Himalayas Viewpoint Trekking spotting point at Khopra Danda is one of the most popular treks in the Annapurna Region, which is connected to two other popular treks: the Annapurna Base Camp and Ghorepani Poon Hill Trek. The Khopra trek is much better than the similar Poon Hill trek for those who do not want to deal with crowds.
In addition to Khayer Lake, a Hindu sacred site, high pastures, and a temporary herder’s settlement, we also travel through rhododendron forests and past Tibetan-looking villages. And, of course, we walk along the ridge itself. The Khopra Ridge at 3,660m is at the end of a steady ascent through alpine meadows and pastures, and it offers a superb vantage point overlooking Kali Gandaki River in the world’s deepest gorge. From the ridge, magnificent peaks shimmer in snow and ice.
There are several teahouse treks in Khopra Ridge. The trail to Khopra Ridge is also very prominent, although one should be aware of diverting to other villages along the way.
About the Region
During the hike along Khopra Ridge, you can see Mt. Dhaulagiri, Annapurna, Nilgiri, Tukuche Peak, and Dhampus Peak. Additionally, you can see one of the most spectacular valleys on the Kali Gandaki River from this trail. Furthermore, the main attractions of this particular Trek are Khayer Barahi Temple or Khayer Lake, Narchyang village, Tatopani village, and Ghandruk village.
A spectacular Himalayan panorama can be seen while trekking from the Khopra ridge of Mount Annapurna (8,000 meters), Mount Dhaulagiri (8,167 meters), Annapurna South, Nilgiri, Dhampus peak, Tukuche peak, Himchuli, Gurja Himal. It is favorable to trek to Annapurna Khopra Trek in the months of March to June and September to November because Annapurna Khopra trek weather in these months is excellent.
There is only one long walking day (which can be a challenge, and the view from the summit rivals any viewpoint in the Himalayas). So this Trek is the perfect way to view and experience the beauty of the Himalayas landscape and mountain ranges in a more serene and one-on-one manner. Over nine days, the Khopra Ridge trek covers a distance of 70 kilometers, covering an average of 8 kilometers a day. Your stay for the day usually ends in the early evening.
Permits and Accommodations
Like any other trekking destination near the Annapurna region, you’ll need a TIMS (Trekkers Information Management System) card and the Annapurna Conservation Area Park (ACAP) permit, which can be acquired from the Nepal Tourism Board or with our help.
In terms of accommodations, Swanta, Christibung, and Khopra Danda each have two or three lodges, each with five to seven rooms, and each room has two to four beds and an excellent heater. Hence, a group of six to ten people can stay comfortably in the same lodge at each location. However, multiple homestays or tea house accommodations are also available on the trekking route.
Preparing for the Trek
The hike from Pokhara to Khopra danda does not contain high altitudes or rugged paths; they are shorter and more relaxing, and you will enjoy the scenery along the way. So it would be best if you prepared accordingly. When we made our first trip to this area, our group of friends brought along the following items with them. We suggest you do the same in order for a similarly comfortable trek.
- Energy drink and water bottle
- Walking stick
- Well-fitting gloves, socks, and hiking shoes or boots
- First aid kit
- Sun Protection cream
- Sleeping bag rated to -10°C +
- Trekking bag (Rucksack)
- Duffel bag
- Large plastic bag
Nevertheless, you can easily find these items at the trek shops near the lakeside at the beginning of the Trek if you forget any of them.
The Khopra Ridge Trek Itinerary
You will need to obtain a Nepalese visa if you’re a foreign explorer and fly to Kathmandu. Then, after a couple of days of exploring the beautiful Kathmandu valley, you will need to get to Pokhara by flight or by bus. From Pokhara, we will begin our Trek.
We take a private vehicle from Pokhara to reach the trekking starting point. You may see stunning views of the Annapurna range, Fishtail, and Annapurna II during the drive. You can also see how the local's farm; takes around 2 hours to reach Nayapool. Your permit will be checked at the permit checking office in Birethanti, and then you will trek along the small river until you reach Tikhedunga and climb for two more hours to reach Ulleri.
Today, a beautiful day starts with a climb up Ulleri's stairs to Banthanti. From Banthanti, the trail passes through the forest, with very few stairs, until we reach Nangethanti. In Nangethati, we have lunch at a place situated in a relaxing forest. After lunch, we need to walk for 1 hour more to Ghorepani, from where you can see Mount Dhaulagiri, the Nilgiri mountain range, Annapurna South, and more.
We drive to Poon Hill at 3210 meters to watch the sunrise over the mountains in the early morning. After you return to Ghorepani, we have breakfast. We then begin our Trek. This Trek is fantastic because it goes through the ridge of the hill until Deurali, where you can try the local cheese of this area. Then the trail separates into two; one goes to Tadapani and the other to Dobato with forests. We continue trekking up the second trail until you reach Dobato, where you'll find an amazing landscape.
The day is exciting today. You wake up early and go to see the views from Mulde Viewpoint in the morning. This is a wonderful viewpoint, better than Poon Hill. Today you trek through the beautiful forest, passing several pastures along the way. You then arrive at Shrsitibang, where you eat lunch and continue the Trek to Khopra Danda, which takes approximately 2.30 hours.
From around six in the morning, you start hiking towards Khayer Lake, where you will gain great views of the Fang and surrounding mountains. Trekking along the ridge, you can see both sides of the mountain. As Hinduism and Buddhism are interrelated, you can see both Hindu and Buddhist temples on the lakeside of Khayer Lake. Khayer Lake is considered a sacred lake by the Hindus, and bathing in its waters is believed to help attain Nirvana.
We hike through a thick forest today to get down to Swanta. The forest is full of rhododendrons, oaks, pines, and other alpine trees. This walk is very relaxing. We stay overnight in Swanta.
The Trek today will take us down to Tatopani, where we will have the opportunity to wash up in a natural hot spring and relax after a long day of trekking. After that, we will stay at Nayapul for the night.
The itinerary mentioned above is the general plan arranged by Pokhara Info. The above itinerary is only a guideline; it might change due to the availability of lodging and campsites, fluctuating weather conditions, unforeseen political, trail, and environmental, or any other factors beyond our control. After consulting with the group, your trek leader will decide the best way to reach a final decision if this occurs.
If the itinerary is unsuitable for you, please let us know, and we will customize it. We will be able to make changes to the itinerary if clients want to do so.
In the end, we follow our steps back home via Pokhara from Nayapul. First, however, do not forget to acknowledge and cherish all the beautiful memories and the gorgeous sceneries you experienced during the Trek during your return home.