Nar Phu Valley
Wedged between the Manaslu and Annapurna Regions, Nar Phu Valley is a hidden destination in the Annapurna Region. It was forbidden to explore this little corner of the Nepal Himalaya until 2003.
The entrance to this hidden valley lies in Koto, at the confluence of the Nar and Marshyangdi Rivers. Flanked by the Annapurna Massif, Dhaulagiri range, Lamjung Himal, and Tilicho Peak, one can enjoy stunning views of the Himalaya on any given day from the trail.
As it requires an additional permit to enter Nar Phu Valley not many trekkers choose to explore this hidden corner of the Annapurna Region. Located off-the-beaten-path the trails are secluded and one can enjoy a peaceful and solitary walk.
Surrounded by soaring high cliffs, deep ravines, narrow canyons and a barren landscape decorated with Buddhist monuments, a trek here feel like a journey to the Tibetan plateau. The ancestors of the people living in these valleys migrated from Tibet during the tenth century.
Untouched by modern civilization the ancient Tibetan culture is very much alive and thriving in this remote corner of the Nepal Himalaya. The villagers still practice Tibetan Buddhism and culture and speak their own language called ‘Narpa’.
Phu village with its mud and stone houses, white chortens and prayer flags seem suspended in time. The villagers still practice the traditions and customs followed by their ancestors. The ancient Tashi Lhakhang Gompa is an important landmark of Phu village. The gompa is one of the most important Buddhist monasteries in the Manang Valley. If you follow the trail north of the village you will reach the Tibetan border.
‘Naur’ means blue sheep in the local dialect. The village of Nar or Chuprong is named after the blue sheep because these wooly creatures are found on the treeless slope and meadows of this village.
Nar, lying on a fertile belt, is much prosperous than other neighboring villages. Yaks are used to till the fields and one can find the villagers working in their fields most of the day.
A trek to the valleys of Nar and Phu introduces you to a unique culture and landscape. Once used as a retreat by Khampa warriors from Tibet, one can find ruined forts and lookout towers built by these warriors.
Since the route to Nar Phu Valley lies close to the Manaslu and Annapurna Circuit trails, you can combine a Nar Phu Valley Trek with either Manaslu Circuit or Annapurna Circuit Trek. If this is too strenuous for you, you can choose to explore just the Nar Phu Valley.
If you start from Kathmandu it will take around 10 days to complete your Nar Phu Valley Trek. Find more interesting itineraries below.