Annapurna Base Camp Trek in December is a unique adventure. Trekking along the quiet trails, misty forests, and green meadows in December is unlike anything you have experienced before. This outstanding trek is ideal for those who wish to trek in a peaceful atmosphere.
Since it is the pre-winter season, there is mild weather with a chilly atmosphere and a perfect combination of heat and cold. The views of the snow-capped mountains are breathtaking in December. Morning and night can get extremely cold especially in late December but the daytime temperatures are perfect for trekking.
Moreover, hikers can observe the snow-covered route after gaining some elevation along the trail. Temperature decreases gradually every other day but you can still observe diverse landscapes in a bright blue sky. Trekkers can find proper accommodation without any hassle but you should book in advance to be safe.
Furthermore, trekkers can also go on a cultural exploration of ancient Sherpa settlements and observe their traditions and heritage. The stable weather and chill air make it a perfect time to move on the trail. Read further to know more about Annapurna Base Camp Trek in December and other related information in detail.
Table of Contents
Highlights of the Trip
- Gorgeous view of Himalayan sunrise from various viewpoints
- Magnificent views of the pristine snow-capped mountains including Annapurna and Dhaulagiri
- Experiencing incredible hospitality and tasting delicious local cuisine
- Exploring medieval monasteries, temples, mani walls, small chortens, and others
- Exploring diverse culture, tradition, and lifestyle of ethnic Sherpa community
- Staying over at local community-run tea houses and lodges
- Walking in the luscious forest of Annapurna Sanctuary and exploring the wide variety of flora and fauna
- Relaxing and Jhinu Danda Hot water spring
- A warm welcome and the incredible hospitality of Nepales people
The Annapurna Base Camp Trek starts from Kathmandu as you take a scenic early morning flight or bus drive along the Prithvi Highway to arrive at Pokhara. From Pokhara, you will take a short drive to Nayapul from where you will start your trek to Ghandruk. The trek will take you to the settlement of Chomrong and reach Sinuwa after a few hours.
The gorgeous Himalayan sunrise from various points along the trail will enchant you. From Sinuwa, you will pass through settlements of Bamboo, Dovan, and Himalaya, to Deurali where you can stay overnight. You can trek around 5 to 6 hours from Deurali to arrive at the ultimate destination of Annapurna Base Camp (ABC).
We will pass through Machhapuchhre Base Camp to arrive at ABC (4130 meters). Similarly, we will explore the Base Camp area and take incredible pictures before trekking back to Bamboo passing through the same trek we took earlier. Also, we then trek downhill from Bamboo, arriving at Jhinu Danda hot water springs and then to Kyumi.
Thereafter, we will trek to Nayapul passing through Siwai, and drive back to Pokhara on a two-hour drive. After arriving at Pokhara, you can stay at a hotel or drive back to Kathmandu which takes another 6-7 hours.
Weather Around Annapurna Base Camp Region In December
Annapurna Base Camp looks incredibly beautiful in December. Trekkers will get to hike in the nicest weather and spectacular atmosphere in December. December has wonderful weather even though mornings and nights are cold. But as the weather clears up on a bright sunny day, you can observe a clear view of snow-capped mountains.
December is also a transition month of two seasons, autumn and winter. Late December months bring fog and freezing conditions. The weather gets cold with trails covered in thick snow. Hence you should trek in the early parts of December as far as possible. The cold breeze and icy-cold temperatures mean that you should pack well with warm clothes.
The early parts of December have mild weather with average temperatures from 5 to 10 Degree Celsius. However, By mid-December, the higher elevation settlements have chilly mornings and nights. The temperature decreases gradually with temperatures falling behind sub-zero and minus degrees. The temperature in ABC Trek can reach -5 Degree Celsius.
Difficulties During Annapurna Base Camp Trek In December
Unpredictable Weather conditions
Extreme weather in late December is another difficulty for the ABC trek. Heavy snowfall, freezing temperatures are some of the challenges of this trek in December. Trekkers will experience extreme cold in the mornings and nights. The days are comparatively warmer but not as much as autumn or spring.
Adverse weather conditions like heavy snowfall will make trails slippery and you will have to trek with caution. So, you should check weather forecasts and conditions before you start your tour trek. Packing warm clothes and trekking gear for the ABC trek in December is essential.
Acute mountain or Altitude Sickness
Altitude Sickness is a major difficulty for any trekker taking this ABC trek in December. Proper acclimatization and regular hydration are essential for tackling altitude sickness in high altitude conditions.
Moreover, you can also take Diamox tablets that help you to tackle symptoms like nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, insomnia, and others. Trekkers should take medicines as soon as they get these symptoms and then stop their ascent and return to lower altitudes.
Furthermore, acclimatization helps you to adapt to changing climate and temperature. You should not stay idle and hike some distance even on acclimatization days. Also, one should not ascend more than 600 meters a day and sleep at a lower altitude from the maximum point along the trek.
Annapurna Base Camp trek in December can have heavy snowfall that can lead to thick layers of snow on the route and make trekking a challenge. Therefore, you should get crampons and mountaineering boots for treks in December. You should also walk cautiously and gently as there are various slippery paths in the ABC trek in December.
December is not a peak time for trekking in Nepal. However, you will not get easy accommodations as many trekkers travel in early December as well. There are frequent snowstorms in the region and many tea houses remain closed during this time. There might not be too many options so you should book the rooms in advance to be safe from any hassles.
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Why Take Annapurna Base Camp Trek in December?
Magical views of snow-capped mountains
A clear view of snow-capped mountains is another highlight of this trek in December. Since the days remain clear with blue skies you can observe the glistening mountains from various points along the trail. The green landscapes and terrace farmed Hills are the prime attraction of this trek in December.
Temperature decreases gradually but the weather remains stable in the Annapurna region throughout the month of December. ABC trek in December has clear blue skies with dry conditions. There is minimal rainfall of around 25mm in the Annapurna region. Hence, trekkers can trek in the beautiful landscapes without any hassle of heavy rains and slippery trails.
Trekkers can experience chilly mornings and nights in December. There are favorable conditions for trekking with the average temperature ranging from 5 to 10 Degree Celsius. This suitable temperature makes the Annapurna Base Camp Trek in December a great adventure.
Quiet and peaceful trails
December is the beginning of the winter season in Nepal. Since it is the off-season there are fewer trekkers along the trail. The trekkers can trek in a quiet and peaceful atmosphere and observe the beautiful landscapes without any noise. You can explore ancient settlements and quaint monasteries without any hurry.
Food and Accommodation in Annapurna Base Camp Trek in December
Basic accommodation facilities of tea houses and lodges are available in the Annapurna region where you will stay overnight after trekking the rustic and rugged landscapes. Accommodation facilities in big cities like Kathmandu and Pokhara range from 5-star hotels to lodges, homestays, and hostels.
Trekkers can get rooms in tea houses from US$2 to US$3 along the trail. The price of five-star hotels in Kathmandu and Pokhara can go as high as US$250 per night. You can choose your accommodations based on your budget and desired facilities. These houses along the trail provide rooms with twin beds, mattresses, pillows, and warm blankets.
Unfortunately, facilities in these tea houses aren’t sophisticated like the ones in the cities of Kathmandu in Pokhara. You will have to share toilets and dining tables. Tea houses also provide hot water, charging facilities, Wi-Fi, and others at an added cost. However, you should carry a sleeping blanket as the blankets provided in these key houses are generally not enough.
Moreover, the food at tea houses along the Annapurna region trek is not fancy and quite basic. The trekkers will get served a Nepalese meal of “Dal Bhat” which is both nutritious and delicious. Overall, it will provide you with enough energy to trek the harsh terrains of the Annapurna region.
Beverages like tea, coffee, garlic soup are available and you can also get porridge, eggs, bread toast for breakfast. Flatbread, momos, stir-fried noodles, curry chickpeas, Thukpas, pizzas, and other cuisine are also available in some of the tea houses. Hence, you can stay in your choice of accommodation along the trail based on your budget and requirements.
Annapurna Base Camp trek in December – Detailed Itinerary
Day 01: Drive from Kathmandu to Pokhara and then to Nayapul, Trek from Nayapul to Ghandruk
Maximum altitude: Ghandruk (2020m)
Drive duration: 6-7 hours (from Kathmandu)
Drive duration: 1.5 hours (from Pokhara)
Trek duration: 1 hour
We start our trekking journey with a scenic early morning flight from Kathmandu to Pokhara or a scenic drive on the winding roads of Prithvi Highway. The 6-7 hours drive later you will arrive at Pokhara from where you can take another short drive to Nayapul.
After arriving at Nayapul, you will start your trekking journey to the beautiful Gurung village of Ghandruk. The short one hour trek to Ghandruk passes through blue misty forests with rhododendron trees. We will stay overnight at a local homestay in Ghandruk village.
Day 02: Trek from Ghandruk to Sinuwa via Chhomrong
Maximum altitude: Sinuwa (2340 m)
Trek duration: 5-6 hours
After breakfast in a homestay at Ghandruk, we started our trekking journey. We continue our trek passing through lush alpine forests of the region to arrive at Chhomrong Village. Chhomrong is a cultural settlement of the Gurung ethnic community and you can observe their tradition and lifestyle.
You can explore the village and blend in with villagers to learn more about their heritage. Also, we will then continue our trek to Sinuwa, passing through various forested trails on rugged landscapes. We will spend the night at a teahouse in Sinuwa.
Day 03: Trek from Sinuwa to Deurali
Maximum altitude: Deurali (3200 m)
Trek duration: 6-7 hours
We will have an early morning breakfast, and start our trek passing through Bamboo, Himalaya, Dovan to arrive at Deurali. Besides, we can observe beautiful snow-capped mountains, green meadows, and terraced farmed hills along our journey.
Moreover, we will then have our lunch at Bamboo and then continue our trek for 6 to 7 hours to Deurali. The trek takes you through the diverse region where you can spot the rare, and endangered wildlife of the region. We then spent the night at a teahouse in Deurali.
Day 04: Trek from Deurali to Annapurna Base Camp via Machhapuchhre Base Camp
Maximum altitude: ABC (4130 m)
Trek duration: 5-6 hours
After having breakfast, we start trekking to Annapurna Base Camp, which is our ultimate destination of the trek. It will take around 5 to 6 hours to reach ABC from Deurali. In addition, we can observe incredible views of Machhapuchhre, Annapurna South, Annapurna III, Glacier Dom, Himchuli, Gangapurna, Gandharva Chuli, and others.
You will also pass through Machhapuchhre Base Camp (MBC) through rugged landscapes. After arriving at ABC, we can explore the region and take incredible pictures. You will stay overnight overlooking the night sky in Base Camp.
Day 05: Trek from Annapurna Base Camp to Bamboo
Maximum altitude: ABC (4130 m)
Trek duration: 5-6 hours
We will observe majestic views of the sunrise over the snow-capped mountains including Annapurna I, Barahi Shikhar, Gandharvachuli, Tent Peak, Annapurna South, and Himchuli.
We will have our breakfast, start our return trek passing through the Machhapuchhre Base Camp, Himalayan, Deurali, Dovan, and reach Bamboo. After a trek of around 5-6 hours, we will arrive at our destination of Bamboo and spend the night at a teahouse.
Day 06: Trek from Bamboo to Kyumi
Maximum altitude: Bamboo (2340m)
Trek duration: 5-6 hours
After having breakfast, we will start our trek to the settlements of Jhinu passing through Sinuwa and Chhomrong. We will arrive at Jhinu (1,690m) and have our lunch there.
You can also relax at Jhinu danda hot water springs after a long and taxing trekking journey. Thereafter, we have lunch and then continue our trek to arrive at Kyumi after 5-6 hours. We will spend the night at a teahouse in Kyumi.
Day 07: Trek from Nayapul via Siwai, Drive to Pokhara or Kathmandu
Maximum altitude: Kyumi (1690m)
Trek duration: 5-6 hours
Drive duration: 1.5 hours (to Pokhara), 6-7 hours (to Kathmandu)
After having breakfast, we will start our trek to Nayapul from Kyumi via Siwai. You will pass through various scenic landscapes and observe beautiful snow-capped mountains. We will then drive back to Pokhara from Nayapul as our ABC trek in December comes to an end. Also, you can also take a scenic drive to Kathmandu along Prithvi Highway and stay overnight at a hotel.
Factors To Consider on Annapurna Base Camp Trek in December
Professional guide and porters
ABC Trek requires a professional guide who will help you with navigation, finding accommodations, and others. Hence, if you trek solo you will have to manage all these logistics on your own. However, if you hire a professional travel guide they will help you at every step and you can trek without any hassle.
They will also help you learn more about the local culture, addition, and lifestyle and work as a translator so that you can communicate with the local people. You can also hire a porter who will help you carry your luggage. Porter-guides work both as porters as well as guides.
ABC trek in December is an off-season trek. However, this does not mean that all the tea houses are available as many of these accommodation facilities shut down in winter. Hence you should book all the accommodation and meal facilities in advance.
If you trek through a trekking agency you don’t have to worry about all these logistics as they will book all the facilities on your behalf. Therefore, you should pre-book in advance or you might have to share a room or even sleep in dining halls.
Acclimatization and regular hydration
Every trekker taking this ABC trek should acclimatize at various points during the trail. This way you can tackle altitude sickness and fatigue with ease. You should also hydrate regularly and not let your body get dehydrated.
Trekking at a gentle pace with proper rest in the middle is also necessary to tackle altitude sickness. You should not rest completely and keep on hiking some distance or exploring even in acclimatization days. Therefore, hydrating regularly, and acclimatizing at various intervals is essential in this ABC trek in December.
Proper packing with essential items
Trekkers should pack according to the season of the trek and include only those items that are necessary. ABC is a challenging trek that passes through rugged terrain and it is quite challenging with a heavy backpack. Trekkers should not forget to pack sleeping bags and warm clothes as they will be trekking in high altitude conditions.
Physical training and mental preparation
ABC Trek is a moderately challenging trick that requires incredible stamina and a basic level of fitness. Trekkers should go on a training regime that includes cardiovascular activities like hiking, jogging, cycling, swimming, and other strength and endurance building exercises. A positive attitude and mental preparation are also essential for this ABC trek in December.
Training And Preparation For Annapurna Base Camp Trek In December
Annapurna Base Camp Trek includes challenging trails in remote and rugged terrains. Besides that, the weather conditions are unpredictable and can change at any hour which increases the difficulty level by a significant amount. Therefore, you should prepare well for the trek with a proper training regime to tackle any unforeseen circumstances.
Strength and endurance training
ABC trek is a moderately challenging trek but requires an incredible level of fitness and stamina. Therefore, you should work on your physical strength and endurance building exercise. You should also train with a backpack as you need to carry it on your shoulder.
Besides that, you can take a practice hike nearby and also do some weight training to gain physical strength. Cardio, squats, push-ups, and other exercises will build your endurance and help you breathe in low oxygen conditions. Likewise, yoga will also help you increase flexibility which is essential during ABC Trek in December.
Mental strength is one of the most significant aspects of any higher altitude trek. Similarly, you should not take it lightly as mental distress can make it difficult for you to complete this challenging trek in the Annapurna region.
Therefore, you should prepare yourself for the challenges with a positive attitude throughout the journey. Furthermore, you can perform various exercises to have your mind and body focussed during this trek.
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Some Essential Tips for Annapurna Base Camp Trek in December
- You should carry water purifier tablets along with you to purify water
- Train well at least two weeks before the trek to gain basic fitness levels and stamina
- Carry your sleeping bag like the ones provided in tea houses are not enough
- You should carry tea bags, coffee powders, juice powders, and others to save costs along the trail
- Please mind ensuring proper acclimatization along with regular hydration during your trek
- You can get trekking equipment on rent from various trekking stores in Thamel
- Check weather conditions so that you can prepare well ahead of the trek
- You should start trekking early as various unfavorable weather conditions might cause delays
- You should book accommodations in advance
- Carry cash in Nepali rupees and keep all your money in different pockets
- Carry snacks like snickers, granola bars, protein bars, chocolate bars, and others to munch on during the trek
Annapurna Base Camp Trek in December – Packing List
- Short-sleeved Trekking shirts
- Long-sleeved Trekking shirts
- Trekking boots
- Trekking pants and jackets
- Insulating down jackets
- Thermals underwear
- Trekking Gloves
- Woolen cap
- Anti-nausea Medicines
- Diamox tablets
- Mosquito and insect repellents
- Toilet Paper
- Hand sanitizer
- Sleeping bag
- Power Banks
- Solar Chargers
- Extra Batteries
- Water Bottle
- Hot water Thermos
- Travel Permits
- Travel Insurance
Final Say – Annapurna Base Camp trek in December
Annapurna Base Camp trek is a once in a lifetime experience. Trekking in the beautiful foothills of Annapurna massif in December will enchant any trekker. ABC provides you a peaceful adventure in a tranquil atmosphere. There is mild weather with favorable temperatures that are perfect for trekking. We hope you learned about the Annapurna Base Camp trek in December in detail. Therefore, you can contact us for more details regarding this trip and book your trip now!