Nepal is world famous for its many trekking destinations and adventurous trails. It offers treks for anyone and everyone. And you can choose to trek any time of the year, throughout the year.
Some popular trekking trails and destinations lie in the Annapurna and Everest region. Annapurna Base Camp is a popular trekking destination in the Annapurna region. And, Spring and Autumn are considered to be the best time to trek Annapurna Base Camp.
However, with the right preparation and equipment, Annapurna Base Camp trek is possible and doable throughout the year.
The most important thing to know before a trek is to get familiar with the weather conditions of the trails.
Nepal experiences four distinct seasons. The area of Annapurna Base Camp trek is no exception. Let us guide you on deciding the best season for your Annapurna Base Camp trek.
Seasons in and around Annapurna Base Camp
The four distinct season that Nepal experiences are Spring, Summer, Autumn, and Winter. Here is a brief introduction to these seasons in and around the Annapurna Base Camp area.
The local spring season is the second best season to trek in Nepal, Annapurna Base Camp included.
Spring falls in the months from March to May in Nepal. The winter ends around mid-February. The days start to get warmer. The weather, climate, and the temperature during spring are just perfect for treks here.
The temperature varies between 17-20 degrees Celsius during the day. The nights and early mornings are slightly colder. In the upper regions of the trek, the weather conditions and temperature do get colder.
The forests in the Annapurna regions start to come alive in spring. The forests and flowers in the lower regions start to bloom. Pink, white, and red blossoms of rhododendrons and wildflowers surround the lower regions of the trails. The surrounding forests of bamboo, pine on the trails are lush green.
You can enjoy the best of nature during this season.
It is also a great time to spot some wildlife like white Langurs, monkeys, Himalayan Tahr, musk deer. And the different species of birds in the forest will amaze you.
During the spring, you can see the beautiful, snow-capped mountains. The bright and dry days and nights make for great visibility. You can also enjoy incredible views of the surrounding landscapes, villages, rivers, and gorges.
This season sees a large number of trekkers and travelers on the trails. This season is great for climbing the high passes in and around the trails of Annapurna Base Camp.
Make sure you pre-book everything. Or else, you may have to struggle for your rooms and meals.
Nepal has a wet Summer. This season sees warm, humid days along with torrential rainfall and thunderstorms.
The months from June to August are the summer months in Nepal. The areas in and around Annapurna Base Camp are partially affected by this season.
The Annapurna Region lies in the rain-shadow area of the very mountain. This is a major reason why the monsoon does not affect largely in this region.
Most of the tea houses, cafes remain open during this season.
A great thing about the monsoons in Nepal is the timing. It mostly occurs during the late afternoons, evening and nights. The mornings to mid-day is usually dry and sunny.
The temperatures on clear days’ vary between 20-25 degrees Celsius. The lower regions of the treks see higher temperatures of 20 degrees Celsius. You can see the rivers, lakes, waterfalls, streams on the trails in their full glory.
You can enjoy the magnificence of mother nature on the trails during this season. But, if you do not enjoy the rain at all, there are some fantastic trekking trails in the rain-shadow areas of Nepal. Some of the most recommended ones are Upper Mustang trek, Lower Dolpo trek.
The trekking routes are not crowded by trekkers and travelers during this season. This leaves you to decide your own pace. You will have the freedom to explore the trails, choose the best tea houses and meals during your trek.
Autumn is the best season to do treks in Nepal including the Annapurna Base Camp trek. Everything about this season is perfect for trekking.
The months of September, October and November is the local autumn season of Nepal. The clear weather makes for amazing visibility.
Awe-inspiring views of the surrounding mountains and landscapes during this season are spectacular. The temperature varies between a cool 15-17 degrees Celsius during the days. It drops slightly during the nights to 7-9 degrees Celsius.
The lower regions of the trails are less dusty. As the monsoon has just passed, the trails slowly start to dry up. The forest, flowers, and wildlife are all lovely and lush. It is a relaxing sight to behold on your treks.
You will also get to enjoy amazing sunrises and sunsets at your rest stops, tea houses, and early morning treks.
Autumn is ideal all around. The weather and temperature are more stable and you can enjoy the long, cool days at leisure.
Being the peak season for trekking, the trails, tea houses, cafes are busy with trekkers and travelers. Make sure you pre-book yours to be on a safer side.
The weather in the upper regions of the trek can change drastically. The clear weather can change into blizzards. So, prepare yourself with proper gear and equipment.
From December to February, Nepal enjoys winter. Due to the difference in altitude and landscapes, the temperature varies greatly. You can notice this within the same trek in the same season.
The starting part of your journey including Kathmandu and Pokhara sees a cool winter. The temperature ranges between 9-17 degrees Celsius during the days.
From the place where your actual trek on foot begins to your destination, the winter weather condition varies.
It gets colder on the trails leading to Annapurna Base Camp. The mornings and evenings are especially chilly. The temperatures drop to negative degrees Celsius during these times.
The days are slightly warmer with temperatures between 2-6 degrees Celsius. Some of the upper regions of the trek also witness snowfall. Some of the high passes in the region like Thorong La pass is closed for safety regions.
The Annapurna region wears a deserted snowy look in winter. Most of the locals migrate to the lower regions for the season.
But, if you like the cold and the snow, this can be a perfect season for you to trek to Annapurna Base Camp. And with the right preparation, equipment, and supplies, this trek should be spectacular.
You get magnificent views of snow-capped landscapes and mountain peaks. Along with these, you can also see the village houses in the upper regions covered by snow. It makes for wonderful, picturesque Christmas cards.
You will also have the trails for yourself. Most of the tea houses and cafes do close for the season. There are some that remain open throughout the year. Be sure to confirm your booking with your tea houses, cafes in advance.
The tea houses offer you warm fireplaces, blankets, hot water, soup to help combat the cold. Some alpine or mountain climbing experience would be great if you want to climb the smaller peaks or passes in this region during this season.
Shoulder months refer to months that fall in-between seasons. February, September, December, and June are shoulder months in Nepal.
You are in for a surprise trek during these months, you may experience some difficult weather conditions. But you will enjoy the best weather conditions within the same trek.
Early February still sees some signs of winter. You may get to enjoy the occasional snowfall in the upper regions of the trek. The temperatures are just starting to rise. So, you may be in for a chilly morning or night during early February.
By Mid-February, spring sets in and you get the full benefits of the spring season.
Some traces of monsoon can be felt during early September. You may encounter the occasional rainfall and thunderstorms.
Autumn finally settles from Mid-September. The temperature and weather conditions start to cool and become more stable. The weather becomes cool, warm and dry.
You can still enjoy the last traces of autumn during early December. Winter has not yet settled. So, the temperature has not reached negative degrees. You can enjoy the trails freely and comfortably during early December.
Early June still sees the lingering spring season weather conditions and temperature.
By May, most trekkers will have left. You can enjoy the quiet and peaceful trails at your own pace in early June. By mid-June, the summer (monsoon) season will have settled.
These months are an adventure in itself. You may see the best and worst of what the season has to offer. The trails to ABC (Annapurna Base Camp) see lesser number of trekkers during these months. If you are up for it, these are great months to do you trek as well.
Nepal is a country of diverse culture. Numerous ethnic groups and people of different religious beliefs live here in harmony. This makes a good reason for Nepal to enjoy many festivals throughout the year.
Festivals give you a unique opportunity to explore and indulge in the culture and lifestyle of the locals.
You can witness the local culture to its full glory. The local people come in their finest clothes and jewellery. They celebrate the festivals with songs, prayers, drama, and dance.
The bright and beautiful season of Spring sees the festivals of color ‘Holi’. Nepali New year also takes place during this season.
Some colorful and enjoyable festivals like Gai Jatra, Janai Purnima, and Teej takes place during summer.
- Gai Jatra is celebrated in memory of their loved ones lost during the year. In modern times, it is also celebrated with parades from the LGBT community of Nepal.
- Teej is the festival for the women. They dance and fast for a day. They also pray to Lord Shiva for blessings. Single women pray to find a suitable match for themselves.
Autumn is the season of the biggest and grandest festivals in Nepal. Majority of Hindus in the lower regions of the trek celebrate their biggest festivals of the year- Dashain, Tihar during this season. Tihar is the festival of lights. You can see the entire nation in colorful lights.
In winter, you have the opportunity to enjoy a snowy Christmas and New Year in some of the remotest parts of Nepal.
The locals in the Annapurna region also celebrate Tamu Loshar, Gyalpo Losar, Christmas, and Mageshangrati. Losar means New year in the local dialect.
The local Gurung community in different parts of Nepal celebrates Tamu Loshar. the upper regions of the trek like Jomsom, Mustang, Manang celebrate Gyalpo Losar. You can witness the locals decked in their cultural dresses. They visit monasteries and celebrate at their homes, community places.
Highlights of Annapurna Base Camp
- Immaculate 360 degrees view of spectacular mountain peaks. These include the majestic Annapurna mastiff, Mt. Machhapuchhre (6,993 m), Hiunchuli (6,441 m), Tukuche (6,920 m) and Dhaulagiri (8,167 m).
- Two base camps in one trek- Machhapuchhre Base Camp and Annapurna Base Camp
- Beautiful lush green forests of rhododendron, pine, bamboo
- Opportunity to explore and indulge in the diverse local culture, tradition, and lifestyle of the region
- One of the more easily accessible treks of Nepal.
- An easy to moderate level trek- doable and possible for anyone regardless of age, gender, budget.
- Natural, hot springs- great for relaxing your tired muscles after the trek.
- Can be modified to include other trekking destinations near the area like Ghorepani, Poon Hill.
Some Extra Tips to Annapurna Base Camp Trek
- The best season for treks to Nepal including Annapurna Base Camp Trek is autumn and spring. The best month to do this trek is in October.
- Do not choose a season or month because of its listing on famous trekking websites and blogs. Make your decision based on your own preference and strength.
- The cool and stable weather conditions are recommended for beginners.
- Make sure you pack everything essential for a high altitude trek during your ABC trek. The weather conditions are unpredictable on the higher regions of the trek.
- It is always recommended to trek with guide and porters throughout the year. They will have experience of doing the trek in all seasons. They can help enhance your overall trekking experience.
- Do not rush your trek. Always maintain your own pace. Relax and enjoy the surroundings and the experience. You are on holiday.
- It is recommended to pre-book everything if you are trekking during the peak seasons. This ensures that you get the tea houses and rooms of your choice.
- Learn as much as you can about high altitude sickness. This will be helpful for you as well as your fellow trekkers.
- Remember to stay hydrated. Staying hydrated is one of the keys for a comfortable and safe trek.
- The weather conditions of Pokhara and Kathmandu are different from the trekking trails of Annapurna Base Camp. Do not plan your trek to Annapurna Base Camp based on information about the weather conditions of Pokhara and Kathmandu.
- Make sure to check your trekking gear and equipment before your trek. They will come handy on the trails.
- Make sure you take a bug repellent in summer. You will come across mosquitoes, flies, and other bugs during this season.
- Do consult with your doctor before undertaking this high altitude trek.
- Take some aqua-tabs, gels or steripen. This is a safety precaution against water contamination.
- Make sure you have a day or two extra for any delays in flight, need to explore the beautiful villages, culture in and around the trails.
- If possible and for beginners, do put in some physical training before your actual trek.
Annapurna Base Camp trek is an adventurous and exciting trek. Trekking to the base of one of the highest mountains in the world, Mt. Annapurna is absolutely blissful.
It is possible to trek in all the four seasons. You will need proper preparation, training, and equipment for winters and summers. Each season offers its own unique flavor to your overall trekking experience.
The weather in the higher regions of the trek is unpredictable and can change anytime. It is best to be well prepared for it.
Trekkers from all around the world visit Nepal for treks, tours, adventure sports. With some of the most diverse trekking destinations and trails, Nepal will spoil you with its choices.
You can contact us for any queries, confusions or questions you have regarding your treks or visit to Nepal.