If Kathmandu is the cultural capital of the country, Pokhara is the natural capital. With its serene lakes, closeup mountain views, and milky white rivers, this is truly the most beautiful Nepalese city. Every year, thousands and thousands of tourists come down to Pokhara to have a merry time or venture into the mountains. This wide valley is surrounded by hills on all sides and is open to different adventurous trails of Western Nepal. All major treks in the Annapurna region commence from Pokhara, thus lending the “Gateway to Annapurna” name to the city. However, many don’t know that the city’s outskirts also boast of equally alluring but short treks that are suitable for visitors who are looking for just a short getaway. Here, in this list, we have 4 best short treks from Pokhara to explore during your next visit to the Lake City.
Dhampus is a small but very beautiful Gurung village in Kaski. It is located in the northern face of Pokhara valley right behind the wet and lush terraced rice fields. If you are looking for a short getaway to the countryside without committing too much time and effort, this is undoubtedly the best trek for you. The highlight of the trek includes beautiful scenery of Mt. Machhapucchre and Annapurna range. On top of that, you can also enjoy views of sunset, sunrise, Pokhara valley, Phewa Lake, and World Peace Stupa from here. The trek also gives you the opportunity to experience the warm hospitality of the Gurung people and indulge in their delicious cuisine.
The trek can be completed in just 2 days, but if you want to spend some more time in this beautiful village, you can extend it to three days. It commences and ends in Phedi which is a 30 minutes’ drive from Lakeside, Pokhara.
Ghandruk is undoubtedly the most famous Gurung village in whole Gandaki zone. Its perfectly built lines of stone houses and splendid views of Mt. Machhapuchhre and Annapurna range makes it one of the best short treks in whole of Nepal. This model village is a popular getaway and a resting point for all the treks in Annapurna region. Here, you can enjoy peaceful rural vicinity with green forests, shiny mountains, and picture-perfect homes. You can even visit the Gurung Museum and get to know and see everything about this popular indigenous tribe. You can even wear the traditional Gurung attires and click photos for a good time and good memories.
The trek can be completed in anywhere between 3 to 4 days and commences from Phedi. It is even possible to complete it in 2 days if you travel up to Pothana in a vehicle. The trail to Ghandurk is pretty much straightforward with no difficult ascents or descents and no risks of altitude sickness.
Begnaskot is a picturesque Hillock that is situate in the northeastern rim of the Pokhara Valley. This place offers an excellent overview of several mountain ranges including the Annapurna massif, Pokhara valley, undulation of lush green hills, and the serene Phewa Lake. During the trek, you will pass through Sundari Danda, which is an exemplary model of agritourism in Nepal. During the hike, you will walk through few rural villages and be able to witness the everyday life of simple, country people. On the top of the hill is a Hindu temple called Begnaskot Temple.
The hike can be easily completed in just a day if you start off early, of course. The hike commences from Begnas Lake – the third highest lake of Nepal. You can even go boating first in this calm lake before commencing your journey. The route is very less trekked and unexplored, thus, leaving you with ample opportunities to trek in a quiet and peaceful environment.
Ghorepani Poonhill Trek
Due to easy accessibility and surreal mountain views, Ghorepani Poonhill trek is quickly becoming one of the most popular treks in Nepal. Ghorepani is a small Gurung village in Kaski and Poonhill is a very popular viewpoint. The trek offers some of the best views of the Annapurna region. From Poonhill, you can see almost 20 towering peaks in all directions. The trail passes through quaint Gurung villages and dense forests of oaks and rhododendrons.
The trek can be commenced in 4-6 days, but you always have the options to either lengthen or shorten the trek. It commences from Tikhedhunga which is a 2-hour drive from Pokhara. The highest elevation of the trek is at Poonhill at 3,210 meters. While returning, you can either walk down to Dhampus or Ghandruk, adding more diversity to the trek.