Annapurna Base Camp Trek in May

Published By: February 24, 2020Written By:Shankar Adhikari

Annapurna Base Camp trek is a fantastic adventure in the diverse landscapes of the Annapurna region. The Spring month of May is one of the best times to trek in Nepal. Annapurna Base Camp trek in May provides an unobstructed view of the mountains and a perfect trekking atmosphere.

Hundreds of trekkers flock the region in May for a great trekking experience. The moderate to warm temperatures in the daytime are ideal for trekking the foothills of the majestic Annapurna massif. You will also get to observe the panoramic view of the snow-capped mountains including Annapurna I, Annapurna South, Manaslu, Mt. Dhaulagiri, Machhapuchhre, and others.

Moreover, the trails pass through the natural landscapes of the Annapurna Conservation Area (ACA). You will also have the opportunity to spot the rare and endangered wildlife of the region including Himalayan Tahr, Snow Leopard, Danphe, and others.

Furthermore, this spectacular trek also allows us to explore the cultural heritage and lifestyle of the Gurung and Magar community. We will stay overnight at the local tea houses and lodges run by the community. The incredible hospitality of the local people will overwhelm you.

Trekking in May also helps you avoid the crowded trails that you might find in the autumn season. You can experience all the beautiful landscapes of the Annapurna region in all its glory. Read further for the detailed description of the Annapurna Base Camp trek in May.

Significant Highlights of Annapurna Base Camp Trek in May

  • Breathtaking sunrise views from the Poon Hill viewpoint
  • 360-degree panoramic views of the snow-capped mountains including Annapurna I, Annapurna South, Machhapuchhare, Himchhuli, Dhaulagiri, Manaslu, and others
  • Experiencing the scenic trails with wildflowers including rhododendron
  • Opportunity to spot rare and endangered wildlife of the region
  • Exploring the culture, traditions, and lifestyle of the Gurung and Magar community
  • Tasting the delicious cuisine of the local people
  • Relaxing at the Jhinu danda hot springs after the trek
  • The warm hospitality of the Nepalese people
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Annapurna Base Camp Trek in April

Outline Itinerary of Annapurna Base Camp Trek in May

Day 01: Arrival at Kathmandu (1400m)

Day 02: Drive Kathmandu to Pokhara (900m)

Day 03: Drive to Nayapul and Trek Tikhedhunga (1570m)

Day 04: Trek to Ghorepani (2870m)

Day 05: Hike up to Poonhill (3210m) and trek to Tadapani (2630m)

Day 06: Trek to Chhomrong (2170m)

Day 07: Trek to Himalaya Hotel (2950m)

Day 08: Trek to Annapurna Base Camp (4130m) via Machhapuchhre Base Camp (3700m)

Day 09: Trek to Bamboo (2345m)

Day 10: Trek to Jhinu Dada (1780) and relax at hot spring

Day 11: Trek to Nayapul and Drive back to Pokhara

Day 12: Drive back to Kathmandu

Day 13: Departure from Kathmandu

The Weather Around the Annapurna Region in May

May is the last month of the Spring season in Nepal. The clear and stable weather is the highlight of the trek in May. You will get favorable weather conditions with less precipitation in the Annapurna region.

For these reasons, May is one of the best months for trekking in Nepal. The temperature ranges around 20-degree Celsius at lower altitudes along the trail. You can expect colder weather at higher elevations. The night temperatures range around 5 degrees Celsius in the region.

Moreover, you can experience harsh winds during the Annapurna Base Camp trek in May. The wind speed can reach around 10km/hr at a higher altitude. There is less precipitation in the Annapurna region in the early parts of May. However, you can experience some monsoon rains in the latter parts of May.

How Difficult is the Annapurna Base Camp Trek in May?

The spectacular Annapurna Base Camp trek is moderately challenging. You don’t need any technical climbing skills or previous trekking experiences for this trek. All you need is a basic level of fitness and mental stability to complete this trek.

Moreover, the Trekkers need to walk for 5-8 hours a day on average. The high altitude trek moves at an altitude of 3000m or above throughout the trail. Besides that, the minimal oxygen levels, low air pressure, and freezing temperatures increase the risk of altitude sickness in the high altitude region.

Furthermore, acclimatization is essential to tackle altitude sickness among trekkers. You can also descend to lower altitudes and climb back after you feel better. You should also walk carefully as the narrow rocky trail is quite challenging. The high altitude region remains cold in the mornings and the night throughout the year.

Hence, you need to wear warm clothes and carry proper gear for the trek. Overall, Annapurna Base Camp trek in May is of moderate difficulty.

Some Measures to Reduce the Difficulty of the Trek

  • You should trek in the early part of May to avoid early monsoon clouds and downpours.
  • Pre-Booking the accommodations and the meal facilities are essential.
  • You should trek gently with slow and steady steps to tackle altitude sickness.
  • You need to wear slip-resistant soles as the trails are steep and slippery
  • The Annapurna Region is also hot and humid in the lower regions. You should wear appropriate clothes and hydrate regularly.
  • The Annapurna region has unpredictable weather, especially in the high altitude areas. Therefore, you should pack rain jackets and rain covers for the trek.
  • You should carry water purifying tablets and a refillable water bottle for the trek.
  • You should carry cash and all the essentials as there are no ATMs, Banks, and Shops in the remote high altitude region.

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Why Trek the Annapurna Base Camp in May?

Breathtaking Mountain Vista

The opportunity to observe panoramic mountain vista in May will enthrall you. You can observe the beautiful sunrise and sunset from the various points along the trail. The view of golden sun rays falling over the silver mountains is awe-inspiring. The spring months make the environment in the Himalayas even more beautiful.

Wonderful Weather Conditions

The weather remains mostly stable and clear in the Annapurna region in May. However, if you trek in late May, you can experience some early monsoon rains. Hence, early May is the best and safest time to travel in the region. Besides that, the scenic environment and the moderate temperatures of the spring are also the highlights of the trek.

Spotting of Rare Wildlife

May is a beautiful month with lots of active wildlife around the region. You can observe the unique flora and fauna of the area in all its glory. Hence, it is a great time to trek the Annapurna Base Camp. The lush vegetation is another prime attraction of the trek.

Incredible Hospitality

Another fascinating aspect of the trek is that you will get astonishing hospitality in the tea houses along the trail. The hospitality of the local Sherpa community will make you fall in love with the place.

The Trekking Route

We start our journey with a drive from Kathmandu to Pokhara followed by a drive from Pokhara to Nayapul. The trekking journey starts from Nayapul to Tikhedhunga, followed by a hike to the Ghorepani and Poon Hill viewpoint.

You can observe a stunning sunrise from the viewpoint. You will then trek to Tadapani the next day, followed by a trek to Chomrong. Finally, we arrive at Annapurna Base Camp on day eight via Machhapuchhre Base Camp. We explore and observe the incredible atmosphere of the Annapurna Base Camp.

After observing the atmosphere and taking beautiful pictures, we trek back to Nayapul following the same route taken earlier. We first drive to Pokhara and then drive back to Kathmandu as our Annapurna Base Camp trek in May comes to an official end.

Food and Accommodation Along the Annapurna Base Camp Trek in May

The spring months including May is the next best time for the Annapurna Base Camp trek after the autumn months. You will get the basic accommodation and meal facilities along the trail. There are twin beds, a pillow, a warm blanket, and a shared bathroom in the accommodation.

Moreover, there are Hot water and Wi-Fi facilities available along the trail at an added cost. The facilities get limited as you move along the path. If the accommodations get packed, you might have to share a room with fellow trekkers or even sleep in the dining hall. Hence, you should book your accommodations early to be safe from any hassles.

Furthermore, you will get bread and boiled eggs along with hot beverages like tea or coffee for breakfast. For lunch and dinner, you will get the typical Nepali dish of “Dal Bhat,” which includes rice, dal (pulses), lentils, pickles, Gundruk, and meat. “Dal Bhat” is a balanced diet that will keep you energized during the trek.

There is a limited variety of western and international cuisines available at some lodges along the trail. You can carry chocolate bars, protein bars, granola bars, etc to get instant energy during the trek.

Things to Consider for the Annapurna Base Camp Trek in May

Annapurna Base Camp Trek in May

Acclimatize and hydrate regularly

Acclimatization is extremely important in this high-altitude trek. Since the high-altitude trek moves along the height of 4000m at all times, the risk of altitude sickness is always high among the trekkers. Besides that, the oxygen levels dip very low, and so does the air pressure, which makes breathing heavy and difficult.

Moreover, drinking water at regular intervals will also increase oxygen levels in your body. Hence, acclimatization and regular hydration help you to tackle altitude sickness in the high-altitude region.

Hire a guide and a porter

Hiring a guide depends upon your desire and requirement. However, hiring a guide is always safer and more favorable. There are chances of you getting lost along the trail or experiencing an injury or accident. Hence, a guide will help you immensely along the trail, and you will also get to learn about the local culture and heritage.

On the other hand, a porter helps you by carrying your luggage along the trail. They carry around 15-20 kgs of weight per person. Similarly, you can also hire a porter-guide who works both as a guide and a porter.

Start your trek early

You should always start your trek early as it will help you arrive at the destination before dark. The jungle trail is not safe after dark as wild animals come out during the night. Hence, you should start the 6-7 hours of trek soon and separate times for rests in the middle as well.

Moreover, you can arrive at the destination safely and sound without any hassle. You should also trek at a slow pace with rests in the middle. This way you can hike more comfortably and also observe the beautiful landscapes of the region.

Book your trip early

May is the peak time for trekking in the Annapurna region. Hundreds of trekkers flock the region to trek the fantastic landscapes of the region. Hence, you should always book accommodation and other facilities early.

After deciding the best package, you should book your accommodations and meal facilities in advance. This way, you will get the best accommodations and other facilities at a reasonable cost.

Set proper training routine

A proper training regime is essential during this high altitude trek. You should start training at least two to three months before the trek. The training routine should include cardiovascular and aerobic exercises, including cycling, hiking, swimming, and others.

Moreover, these exercises also build your strength, stamina, and endurance to tackle the harsh conditions along the trek. Besides that, you should also eat a healthy diet and drink water regularly.

Pack adequately

Packing is an essential part of any trekking adventure. An important point to note is that you should only pack those stuff that is extremely important for the trek. You should also pack your cloth in layers so that you can add or remove your clothes as required by the weather.

However, you should not miss packing a down jacket, and a sleeping bag as the blankets provided by the teahouses are not always enough. Besides that, you should pack other regular stuff like trekking pants, shirts, shoes, thermals, first aid, toiletries, and others.

Get a proper Travel insurance

You need to get an excellent travel insurance package to stay protected. An excellent travel insurance package covers you from any accidents, injuries, and other emergencies.

Some travel insurance packages also cover flight cancellations and helicopter evacuation, as well. A helicopter evacuation costs around $5000 to $10000 in the high Himalayas. One important thing to note is that you should always get a travel insurance package that covers 4000m and above.

Some Essential Tips for the Annapurna Base Camp Trek in May

  • Do not rush and maintain a gentle pace throughout the trek.
  • You should rest at the same altitude or even descend further if you feel the symptoms of Altitude Sickness.
  • Trek in the early part of May to avoid occasional monsoon rains. Get yourself a light raincoat and rain covers for a trekking adventure in late May.
  • You should wear comfortable trekking boots that you should break in before the trek. This will help you along the rugged and dusty trails.
  • You should Pre-book your accommodation and meal facilities during the trek.
  • Hydrate at regular intervals. This improves the oxygen levels in your body.
  • You should hire a porter if you find it difficult to trek with your backpack.
  • Carry some extra snacks that give you instant energy during the trek. You can carry chocolate bars, protein bars, snickers, granola bars, and others.
  • You should carry all your essential documents, including passport, travel permits at all times for safety purposes.

Things to Pack for the Annapurna Base Camp Trek in May

Annapurna Circuit with Annapurna Base Camp Trek

Some of the essential items you need to pack for the Annapurna Base Camp Trek in May are as follows:

Clothing

  • Waterproof/windproof jackets
  • Waterproof/windproof pants
  • Trekking boots
  • Thermals
  • Down jacket
  • Waterproof trekking trousers
  • Waterproof trekking pants
  • Short-sleeved trekking shirts
  • Woolen gloves
  • Woolen cap
  • Liner socks
  • Ski goggles
  • Fleece sweaters
  • Woolen trekking socks
  • Raincoat

First Aid

  • Anti-nauseant medication
  • Diamox tablets
  • Moisturizers
  • Sunscreen
  • Rehydration salts
  • Water purification tablets
  • Mosquito and insect repellent

Toiletries

  • Toilet paper
  • Soap
  • Shampoo
  • Sanitizer
  • Toothbrush
  • Toothpaste
  • Quick-dry towel

Accessories

  • Cameras
  • Chargers
  • Power Banks
  • Extra batteries
  • Sleeping bags
  • Hot and cold Thermos
  • Reusable Water bottle

Important documents

  • Passports
  • Travel permits

The Final Say

May is one of the best months to trek the Annapurna Base Camp. You should schedule your trip at the beginning of May to avoid the early monsoon rains. The spring environment of May is pleasant and favorable for trekking in the region.

Furthermore, you will get the spectacular views of the entire Annapurna range from the various viewpoints along the trail. You can also spot the rare wildlife of the Annapurna region. Overall, the Annapurna Base Camp trek in May is an incredible experience.

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