Annapurna Base Camp is one of the most popular destination for trekkers. It takes you to the base camp of the tenth highest mountain in the world and that is not all it has to offer. The end destination is definitely something to look forward to but it is the journey itself that makes this trail a favorite among all kinds of trekkers. Following are those major attractions that attract travelers from around the world to Annapurna Base Camp trekking.
Surely, Annapurna is the main highlight of this trek. It is one of the Eight Thousanders (8,091m) and the tenth highest mountain in the world. Trekking to its base camp is the closest you can get to this mountain. From there, you can then capture this massive structure with your little frame next to it and brag to everyone you know back home. Climbing high up to the altitude of 4,130m is not a small feat either. This sense of adventure and accomplishment is also what motivates people to do this trek.
Natural hot springs
There are many natural hot springs in Annapurna region. Depending on the route you take, you will come across 2 or 3 hot springs that is absolutely free of cost. Nothing can be more relaxing than hot springs for your tired body. Some of them are even believed to heal different diseases. But the idea of taking a dip in hot waters itself, after days of trekking, can be very intriguing.
Vantage spot for sunrise and sunset
On the way to Annapurna Base Camp is the famous Poon Hill. This is a vantage point for the most beautiful sunrise and sunset. You can see a range of mountains like Annapurna, Dhaulagiri, Himchuli, Machhapuchhre, Gangapurna etc. and during the sunrise and sunset, they look even more stunning. Many people do a short trek up to Poon Hill but you can be there on your way to the base camp.
Most picturesque settings for your photos
Beautiful sceneries seem to follow you and it changes from tropical to arctic. You will get many opportunities for an awesome background. From poon hill, the base camp and other places as well, you can get a spectacular view of different high mountains like Dhaulagiri, Manaslu, Machhapuchhre (fish tail), Hiunchuli, Lamjung and others. Valley, farmlands, varying landscapes, traditional villages, exotic plants and animals etc. that you will come across in Annapurna region will make some great photos to take home.
You will come across a few traditional villages of the indigenous Gurung and Magar people. Some of the places are Landruk, Ghandruk and Chhomorung. You can visit a museum in Ghandruk that displays their traditional tools and products like cloth-weaving machine, a flourmill and such. You can taste their unique dishes and get to know their festivals and other cultures.
Exotic flora and fauna
Because of the diverse geography, one can see all types of flora and fauna when trekking to Annapurna Base Camp. It is rich in different types of flowering and non-flowering plants of which different species of rhododendron and orchid are the major ones. Some plants here are native to this region only. Annapurna Conservation Area seeks to protect these plants and other rare animals found here.
Annapurna region is rich in wildlife as well. Many rare and endangered species like snow leopards, musk deer, Himalayan Tahr etc. are found here. You will be lucky to spot a leopard but you may encounter a heard of blue sheep and Tahr. Locals here like to talk about another animal– Yeti. It is said to roam the higher snowy realm. Whether encountering one would be a lucky thing is debatable but you probably do not have to worry.
Machhapuchhre Base Camp
Annapurna Base Camp is reached via Machhapuchhre Base Camp. Therefore, you will be visiting two base camps in one trip.
These were the major attraction of trekking to Annapurna Base Camp. However, for any trekker, the joy is in walking itself. These are only the plus points that can add meaning to your journey.