My husband and I spent 10 days trekking around the Manaslu circuit from the end of September to early October through the guidance / outfitting of Nepal Mother House. It was amazing. Here are a few thoughts about the guiding company (Nepal Mother House), the Trek (Manaslu), time of year, and suggestions that we have.
Nepal Mother House -- Would 100% recommend this company to other travelers headed to Nepal. Before arrival, we had communicated a lot with Karna, as he fielded our many questions and helped sort out our specific requests. Karna is responsive over email and Skype, and did his best to answer any questions that we had. Because of cultural differences and a few language barriers (he speaks great English, but we found it occasionally hard / some lost in translation over Skype!), we arrived in Kathmandu a bit skeptical and holding our breath as to what we had signed up for. Karna was there waiting for us the minute we stepped outside, staying up past midnight to take us to the hotel (which is great --- trust wherever he puts you up!! We were at the International Guest house which we ended up staying at longer after the trek). Because Nepal Mother House is a smallish organization, they are so personal. On our first full day in Kathmandu Sightseeing, karna walked to our hotel to pick us up, then walked us back to his office where the 10 or so porters and guides had all gathered for a daily check in. It was fun to meet them all, and began the personal experience with our guides. Overall, Id recommend and trust Nepal Mother house on another expedition, and appreciated that it was VERY well priced (maybe even too cheap, we know that we were not ripped off at all upon calculating things).
Manaslu Circuit Trek -- Highly recommend. Next to Annapurna, but a PERCENTAGE of the foot traffic. The locals at the tea houses are authentic and excited, not over westernized, no hiking next to roads, very remote, beautiful, and overall a great first Nepalese trek. Because of some timing constraints, we adjusted the plan to be a 10-11 day trek, rather than the original proposed 15+ days. As two in shape but fairly normal people, we found the "fast" track to be completely doable. I would not have wanted to go slower, as we would have been sitting at tea houses for the majority of the day rather than hiking. Typically we hiked for 5-7 hours --- which is very doable seeing as there was nothing else to do other than drink tea, look at the scenery, eat, and sleep.
Time of Year -- We started the trek in mid / late September, and wish that we could have started 2 weeks later. The rainy season is no joke. On the trek, we had 2 or 3 days of rain that we had to push through -- not ideal, but not terrible. The benefit of going early was that there were VERY FEW other hikers, and really made the whole experience feel authentic and unique. There was always a bed available and many perks like getting to sit in the kitchen with the nepalese to stay warm and talk at night. If we did it again, wed likely go in December, after the rush of hikers but in the colder season.
A few suggestions -- we opted for the "private transport" from Kathmandu to the trail head, somewhere in the neighborhood of $300-400 totally round trip. This felt like a lot at first but was 100% worth it. On the way home, the road was jammed and it took us 17 hours to travel what should have taken a few. We were soooo thankful to be in our car (with the driver, guide, and porter). Public bus may be "fun" and a little more cultural, but Id opt to get some extra culture in elsewhere and take the private transportation option. If you can swing it, also bring your own sleeping bag, as those were rented to us and fine but definitely not the cleanest. We used water purification tablets the whole time and those worked great.
Our guide was Sabut and porter was Isor -- they did a great job. Thanks guys!! Hope to be back some day soon and missing Dahl Bat and Rakki!
Claire Thompson (United States)
January 10, 2020
We were a group of 3. Karna was recorded to us by our daughter who had used him a couple of years ago. Karna was very flexible to accomodate our requirement to have access to power in our rooms each night. Our guide Jayaram was very professional and patient. We had to redesign our Annapurna Short trek midway as one of us was struggling. Jayaram came up with a great alternative plan that meant we could all continue the experience together. Our porters Dharaj and Umesh were also very professional and attentive.
Maurice Fink (Australia)
January 03, 2020
We are a team of 10 people from Hong Kong in an age group ranging from 50s to 69 and have just completed a 19 day trek in Everest Base Camp and 3 Passes (Kongma La pass, Chola pass and Renjo La pass) during period 8-28 November 2019. We were very pleased with the professional services provided by Nepal Mother House Treks.
Karna, our trekking agent was very responsive to our needs and the communication with him was effective and honest. The package arrangement gave us enough time for acclimatization and flexibility to cope with the strenuous trek. We didnt have any major AMS problem hindering our progress. We felt very happy-go-lucky for the accomplishment.
Our guides Subarna and Suman were very attentive to our needs. They were caring and always kept us informed of the forthcoming challenges. They were young and possessed a high level of energy to look after us in connection with hot water, battery charge, medical help, meals and accommodation arrangements, etc. along the trek. They always tried to find the best available accommodation lodges to us along the trek for which we felt grateful for this.
Subarna was never away from our team and always around for our needs. He was very communicative and approachable that you wouldnt feel bored with him, so was Suman. Not only were the guides exceptional, the porters were friendly and helpful. We were thankful for being given such an efficient team of guides and porters for our Everest 3 Passes Trek with EBC. Thank you, Karna.
Most importantly, the trekking cost with Nepal Mother House Treks was very competitive and worthy of value for a once for a lifetime adventure. We have no regrets!
We highly recommend Nepal Mother House Treks as your choice of trekking agent, you wont be disappointed!
Andie Ho (Hong Kong)
December 10, 2019
We highly recommend Nepal Motherhouse Trek! The tour was very well organized. Communication and planing with the agency before travelling to Nepal was very personal! Special thanks to Suba for being the perfect tour guide and thanks to Kanil, 1st class porter :) during our 3 Days Annapurna Short Trek.
We would definitely book the next trekking with the same team again!
Sophia Von (Swaziland)
December 10, 2019
I highly recommend Nepal Mother House for delivering on both price and quality for trekking. The owner, Karna Rana, worked with me to design a custom 21 day trek around two mountain ranges Manaslui and Annapurna. The experience of trekking with guide Suman Thapa and porter Biraj Rana was wonderful! Suman was very knowledgeable about the region. Were fairly strong trekkers who live at high altitude, and Suman let us explore way beyond the normal trekking areas on side hikes. He also arranged a jeep and taxi for us to avoid hiking on some dusty road sections around Annapurna, allowing us even more time for side hikes and cultural exploration.
Gray Johnston & Neil Purrett (United States)
December 01, 2019
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