My Journey to Poonhill
Sunrise From Poonhill
Travel is my passion; I love to adventure to mountainous places. This winter vacation, I chose the Poon Hill Trek. The Himalayas fill Nepal, and the Poon Hill Trek is among the most popular trails in Nepal. At 3,210 meters, Poon Hill is the highest point of the trek, which offers excellent views of the Annapurna and Dhaulagiri Mountain Ranges. It was a dream of mine to finally view these mountains at such a close distance. This trip is an excellent option if you are looking to start trekking around Nepal, and if you are short on time, as it can be easily completed in four or five days. Since this is a popular route, there are lots of hotels and tea houses throughout the route, and you will meet fellow trekkers all along the way. You can complete the trip without a guide, even if you are a foreign tourist. I did the trek in five days with my friend Sanjeev Thapa Magar. Our journey started from Kathmandu, the capital city of Nepal.
cloud over the Mount Annapurna South from Poonhill
Day 1: Kathmandu to Pokhara
We set off from Kathmandu to Pokhara early in the morning at 8 a.m. to catch a Jagdamba tourist bus. The tourist bus was really luxurious, with an attached European-style washroom. During the bus trip, we enjoyed very good service and hospitality from the bus crew. We were provided hot coffee, cold drinks, and a light lunch. The drive mostly follows along the Trishuli Riverside. There were changing landscape views to enjoy from the window. After reaching Pokhara City at 4 p.m., we went to the Hotel Blue Heaven at the lakeside village and rested for some time. Pokhara is one of the most beautiful cities and the second largest tourist destination in Nepal. It is popularly known as the City of Lakes. Then, we went for a walk near Fewa Lake. The view from there was very nice. It is surrounded by green hills and the Snowfall Mountains on the north side. We could clearly view the white and diamond-like shine of the mountains. Here we could also have a clear view of the Machhapuchhre and Annapurna Mountains. Pokhara is really a beautiful and peaceful valley. Many people come here just for sightseeing and to enjoy extreme adventure activities, such as boating, mountain biking, paragliding, ultra-light flying, and zip-lining.
Cloud UFO over the Mount Fishtail from Poonhill
Day 2: Pokhara to Nayapul
In the early morning, we had our breakfast in the hotel and then started by taxi on our journey to Nayapul, 45 kilometers away from Pokhara. From there, we had to walk. After reaching this destination, we rested for some time. There we discovered a small river named Modi Khola. When we crossed it, we reached Birethanti, 1,025 meters high. It is a small village that has shops and guest houses. Here, the path continues with stairs. We followed the river, climbed steadily up the side of the valley to a hill at 1,496 meters, and after the short climb there, we reached Tikhedhunga at 1,555 meters to enjoy lunch. We met many Korean travelers along the way, saying “Annyeong-haseyo” to begin a short chitchat before continuing on our way, climbing up through Ulleri, a large Magar village at 2,020 meters. We walked through the lovely forests, the sounds of birds surrounding us, and went to the Rhododen forest towards Banthanti at 2,250 meters. Then we walked towards Nangethanti, ending at 2,510 meters for lunch. The weather was good that day, allowing us to see many beautiful things along the way. Though we were feeling very tired, we enjoyed the hike. Most travelers take a one-night rest at Banthanti, but we walked nonstop, and in the evening, we reached the more distant Ghorepani, at 2,882 meters. We stayed at the Shikhar Guest House, where we received a warm welcome and very good Ghorepani service.
Mount Annapurna South range from Poonhill
Day 3: Hiking to Poon Hill, back to Ghorepani, and trek to Ghandruk
We rose at 4:30 a.m. to catch the sunrise at the top of Poon Hill. It takes about an hour to climb to the top from Ghorepani. Poon Hill, at 3,210 meters, is not high enough for the climber to really be affected by the altitude. We reached the peak to see the sunrise and the view of the mountain ranges. It was a heavenly view, full of white-fogged ground surrounded by mountain peaks. When the sunrays touched the mountains, it was like seeing shining gold peaks – breathtaking. The scenery was really amazing and interesting. We got awesome views of the Himalayas, including Mt. Dhaulagiri, Mt. Fishtail, and Annapurna South. When we saw the mountain ranges, we forgot all the troubles of the journey. We drank hot tea on the top of Poon Hill and took beautiful shots of the sunrise and mountain views. We spent a good two hours at the summit trying to capture their most beautiful moments.
Shining Mount Dhaulagiri from Poonhill
Then we returned to our hotel and had our breakfast. After breakfast, we started walking through lovely forests to Ghandruk. On our way, we saw a beautiful waterfall, frozen because of the cold. A steep uphill walk to the village of Deurali offered more spectacular views of the nearby mountains. We passed through more of the Rhododendron Forest on our way down to the river. Crossing the bridge, we headed up to the village of Tadapani. From Tadapani, we gradually made our way down to Ghandruk.
Cloud over the Mount Fishtail from Ghandruk
Then, in the evening, we reached Ghandruk, at 1,950 meters. Ghandruk is famous for its homestays and its culture. Here we can see the Gurung people; they are one of the ethnic groups of Nepal who have their own typical cultures, costumes, lifestyles, and importance. This village is one of the most famous tourist destinations because of its cultural importance to Nepal. Many tourists come here to visit the different types of lifestyles and costumes. That day was the last day for our trekking, so I was looking all around. We stayed at the Peaceful Hotel and Lodge, where we received a warm welcome and good service.
Day 4: Trek down to Birethanti and Drive from Nayapul to Pokhara
After watching another wonderful sunrise and having a nice breakfast, we walked down through the beautiful Gurung Village. Then, after driving in a tourist bus for an hour, we reached our hotel at Lakeside, Pokhara. Thus, my five days of trekking ends here.
Day 5: Back to Kathmandu
We had our breakfast in the hotel in the morning and went back to Kathmandu in a Jagdamba tourist bus. We really had a great time, so I am very thankful to all those who helped me in trekking, especially Sanjeev Thapa Magar for the entire journey.
I hope these photographs help travelers who are looking for a new travel destination; Poon Hill can be a good destination for an interesting adventure.
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