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Why The Mardi Himal Trek Should Be On Your Nepal Bucket List

In the mighty shadow of Machhapuchhre and Annapurna South lies a hidden gem of a trek in Nepal – the Mardi Himal Trek. Reaching the towering Mardi Himal peak (5553m) offers stunning off-the-beaten-path views minus the crowds. As an experienced travel blogger and passionate trekker, I recently conquered this scenic short trek and want to convince you to add it to your Nepal bucket list!

Dramatic Vistas Around Every Corner

The relatively easy 4-5 day Mardi Himal Trek rewards you with non-stop jaw-dropping vistas of the Annapurna Range’s famous peaks. The trail winds through rhododendron forests before emerging above the tree line.

The views get better daily as you gain altitude until you reach the alpine meadows of Mardi Himal Base Camp (4500m). Here the Machhapuchhre, Annapurna South and Hiunchuli mountains surround you in all their glory. It’s one of the most scenic yet peaceful high mountain camps in Nepal!

Experience Authentic Teahouse Trekking

One of the highlights of trekking in Nepal is its vibrant teahouse culture. The Mardi Himal Trail is lined with local lodges and tea houses, allowing you to immerse yourself in mountain life.

There’s no better way to end a rewarding day of trekking than relaxing with daal bhaat and chiya tea alongside fellow adventurers from around the globe. The warm hospitality at these family-run teahouses is what makes this trek so special.

The Best Time to Trek Mardi Himal

The Mardi Himal Trek can be done year-round, but the ideal seasons are:

Spring (March to May)

  • Warm days with cool nights
  • Rhododendron forests are in full bloom
  • Clear skies before the monsoon comes

Autumn (October to November)

  • Stable weather and excellent visibility
  • No rain or clouds to obstruct views
  • Busier as peak trekking season

Winters (December to February)

  • Possible to trek but colder temperatures
  • Higher chance of snow at higher elevations
  • Fewer tea houses open on trail

Avoid Monsoon Season (June to September)

  • Heavy rain likely leading to poor visibility
  • Risk of landslides and muddy slippery trails
  • Leeches come out in the dense forests

The standard Mardi Himal Trek itinerary is:

Day 1 – Drive from Pokhara to Phedi, trek to Pothana

Day 2 – Pothana to Forest Camp

Day 3 – Forest Camp to High Camp

Day 4 – High Camp to Mardi Himal Base Camp (4500m)

Day 5 – Extra acclimatization day to explore MBC area

Day 6 – Mardi Himal Base Camp to Siding Village

Day 7 – Siding to Pokhara

You can modify this itinerary based on your fitness, timeline and whether you want to extend the trek. Spend a night at High Camp to aid acclimatization before Base Camp.

Key Tips to Trek Mardi Himal

Here are some key tips for trekking Mardi Himal:

  • Get permits at the ACAP office in Pokhara before trekking
  • Book tea house lodges in advance during peak season
  • Pack light and dress in layers for changing temperatures
  • Bring enough water and stay hydrated throughout the trek
  • Walk slow and steady to prevent altitude sickness at 4500m+
  • Hire an experienced guide used to the route
  • Carry cash as ATMs are not available on the mountain
  • Have a flexible itinerary in case of weather changes

Travel Tips for an Epic Hike:

– Fly to Pokhara and take a taxi to the trailhead at Phedi to start the trek

– Hike in Spring (March-May) or Autumn (October-November) for ideal weather

– Get permits at the ACAP office in Pokhara before you start

– Have a light backpack to manage the uphills comfortably

– Stay hydrated and walk at a steady pace to avoid altitude sickness

Take Your Trekking to the Next Level

If the Mardi Himal Trek sparks your passion for the high mountains, you can extend your adventure further. Combine it with the Annapurna Base Camp trek for the ultimate 2-week Annapurna experience.

For hardcore trekkers, do the complete Annapurna Circuit across Thorong La Pass. You’ll get to experience lush green foothills, Tibetan culture and the world’s highest mountain pass.

I hope this guide has inspired you to take on the Mardi Himal Trek! With stunning mountain scenery, and authentic teahouse hospitality, it deserves a spot on any Nepal bucket list!