The finest short and easy trekking in the Annapurna region, Poonhill Trekking fascinates thousands of trekkers and adventure lovers every year. Poonhill is the best vantage point located at the elevation of 3200m above the sea level offers the 360-degree mountain panorama include Annapurna Massif, Gangapurna, Himchuli, Dhaulagiri, Manaslu Ganesh Himal and mesmerizing Machhapuchhre. Poonhil trekking is sometimes graded as easy to moderate. Poonhill also paves the way to Annapurna Base Camp Trekking.
The most difficult portion of Poonhill Trekking is the uphill of Ulleri. This uphill of Ulleri has more than 3000 stones steps which, sometimes, is challenging for the aged and beginners. But your professional trekking crew and the guide will assist you in different ways that you will find it exciting and less strenuous.
This trek begins with a flight or drive from Kathmandu to Pokhara. Pokhara city itself is one of the dominant highlights of Poonhill Trekking. It is the city with serene street, peaceful lakes, holy caves and temples. At the same time, Pokhara offers us breathtaking views of Annapurna mountain panorama.
We further drive to Nayapool and begin hiking aiming to get to Ghorepani. Before Ghorepani, we pass Tikhedhunga, Ulleri, Banthanti and lower Ghorepani. These settlements are just beautiful. People are friendly. While passing these picturesque settlements, we experience serenity, lush rhododendron, some species of flora and faunas in Annapurna Conservation Area, rhythmic waterfalls and wilderness. If you make your Poonhill Trekking during spring (March-May), we will be stunned with flowering rhododendron covering the entire hills. So, majority of the people love to trek to Poonhill during Spring.
The average hours of trekking in a day is 5 hours including lunch time in the afternoon. We begin with an elevation of 900 m in Pokhara and the highest elevation we get is 3200m which is Poonhill. The trail is not slippery. However, on returning we get some part of the trail steep and slippery too. We will encounter this part between Ghorepani and Tadapani. We don’t get snow on the trail except in mid of the winter.
We normally spend one night at Ghorepani. But some trekkers prefer a day rest at Ghorepani. We climb Poonhill early in the morning before sunrise. The top of the hill offers magnificent views of sunrise and entire Annapurna panorama with astonishing Dhaulagiri. We celebrate the views for around half an hour and get back to Ghorepani. It takes around 45 minutes to get the top of the hill. We get tea and coffee at the top. We also need to buy our entry.
On backtracking, we pass other beautiful settlements like Tadapani and Ghandruk. Both Ghandruk and Tadapani please us with captivating Annapurna Mountain and sunrise view. Ghandruk is the largest village inhabited by Gurung people. Gurung are one of the ethnic people of Nepal with a rich culture and tradition. We will experience rich Gurung culture and hospitality of the friendly people at Ghandruk. This typical Nepali village astonishes us.
This trek after 4 hours of trek from Ghandruk to Nayapool, ends at Pokhara. Optionally, we can escape this walk by hiring a jeep from Ghandruk to Nayapool.
Accommodation and Food
We will use normal accommodation during our Poonhill Trek. We get attached accommodation in Ghorepani and Ghandruk but hard to get during peak season, Autumn (Sep-Nov). So, we should not expect to enjoy luxury accommodation during Poonhill trekking. The toilets and bathrooms are outside and shared. The beddings are neat and clean. We sometimes have to share the accommodation with other people too.
The local guesthouse will provide us the menu and we make a choice of our meal. One item of meal cost between 3-8 USD. Nowadays, we get even western and continental food. The food is organic and made with local products.
Best time to trek
Nepal has four climatic seasons: Winter, Summer, Autumn and Spring. Among them, Autumn is the best season to trek to Poonhill. The climate is mild. The mountain peaks are breathtaking. The atmosphere is pleasant. Poonhill region receives heavy rainfall during summer. Likewise, winter is harsh with heavy snowfall and Spring is hot. But some trekkers love to trek to Poonhill during spring to see flowering rhododendron. It will just be magnificent.
Prepare well, buy right trekking gear, choose reliable trekking company and find the best season and make your Poonhill Trekking a memorable.