Khopra Danda Trek, also know as Khopra Ridge Trek is a new alternative trekking destination in the Annapurna region. It is the perfect alternative trail of Ghorepani Poonhill Trek with less crude on the path but offers one of the best views. If you are looking for something, short hike with the best possible picture in the less crowded area of Annapurna, Khopra Trek may fulfill your request. The trail follows from Ghandruk to until Tadapani on the same route as classical poon hill trail. From Tadapani, the path splits off to the north of Khopra ridge.  It only lasts for a week to nine days and still offers the best view of the Dhaulagiri range and Mt. Fishtail along with other Annapurna Himalayan Range. Starting from Ghandruk instead of Ghorepani, one can continue toward Tadapani, further toward Dobatae (Often known as Dobato). Sunrise over Mount Dhaulagiri can be a perfect spot at Dobatae, and a side trip to the hidden lake in front of Annapurna South (Khayer Lake 4,660m) is probably the path least traveled yet. The trail can be continued toward Ghorepani and Poonhill or end the trek on Tatopani and drive back to Pokhara. Dobato at the elevation of 3,420 from sea level is day camp from Tadapani from where the next destination will be Bayeli and finally Khopra Danda from where Tatopani is one camp down before we drive back to Pokhara on the following day.

Khopra Danda Trek

Highlights

⇒ Fantastic view of Annapurna and Dhaulagiri including many other Annapurna ranges
⇒ Short off the beaten trail in Annapurna
⇒ Inherited local cheese and dairy product and walked through the beautiful mountain village
⇒ Great opportunity to spend a night in one of the most picturesque tea houses.
⇒  An excellent side trip to Khayer Lake 4,660m

Where to start Khopra Trek

The only international airport in Nepal is Kathmandu. You should plan to arrive in Kathmandu and travel to Pokhara. You can travel to Pokhara from Kathmandu via tourist bus, flight, or in the private car. Once you get to Pokhara, you have to drive again to the trailhead, which is Nayapul. From Nayapul, you can hike to Ghandruk. Ghandruk is the village where you would want to start Khopra danda trek.

Permits

To complete the Khopra trek, you only need two permits. One ACAP (Annapurna Conservation Area permit) and the other one is a TIMS card (Trekking  Information Management System. ACAP permit only cost NPR 3,000 (USD 27), and TIMS card costs USD 10 per person.

Food and Accommodation

It is a complete tea house trek, so no need for camping. Food and accommodation are basic, but good enough to survive. Ghorepani, Tadapani, and Tatopani offer comfortable tea houses while, Dobato, Bayle, and Khopra Danda have the primary housing. It will be roughly USD 5-7 per night to rent one room in this region. The tea house in Khopra Danda is probably one of the most picturesque guest houses in Nepal as it lies on top of the mountain. On a clear day, each of the corners of the window would offer the best-overlooking view of the Himalaya you have ever seen. Basic food, Dal-Bhat, and other continental foods are available on each tea houses you can choose from the menu. Per meal cost around USD 4-5 (NPR 400-500). You can rent a hiking gear in Kathmandu. A sleeping bag is recommended but not necessarily mandatory as you will be provided blankets in the tea houses.

Guide and Porter

We recommend the professional trekking guide as hikers have not much explored the trails. The trail after Tadapani to up to Khopra danda is not well dotted. A side trip to Khayer Lake (4,660m) is the best day of this trek, so make sure the guide you are hiring knows the trail well. Not a lot of guides have been studied this trail very well. You may want to find the best company or (Contact us) who has the guide knows this trail very well.  It will only cost USD 25-30 per day to hire a guide and USD 20 for the porter that includes their fees, food, accommodation, and insurance.

Best Time

If you genuinely want to enjoy this trek with the best possible view, you should plan to hike during the best time of the year. March to until the last week of May is probably the best time.  During this time, you will not only be rewarded with the mountain landscape but also the jungle, and colorful trees with a rhododendron flower would cover the entire forest. The third week of September until the last week of December is also the best time to explore Khopra Ridge. During this time, the sky remains Christal clear but no rhododendron flower views. Some hikers also explore this trek during the monsoon of June to August. But the mountain views often disturbed by the clouds during the day. But the mountain floating dramatic views is only possible during monsoon. Depending on a personal choice, some hikers prefer spectacular views running through clouds rather than still mountain views. So nothing wrong If you wish, you can trek Khopra even in a monsoon.

How Difficult is Khopra Danda Trek

Khopra Danda Trek is a moderate hike. It is not difficult for a regular hiker. However, you have to be ready to gain 3,640m in 4 days, which comes an average of 700m of elevation each day and 7-8 hours of walk. There is no flat or gradual hike. It is all the way ascending every day until you reach the top. Especially if you decided to make a day trip to Khayer Lake (4,660m), you have to hike 1,010m and back to Khopra danda on the same day.  But the hardship you would put in this trek would worth rewarding.

Khopra Danda Trek Without Guide

I was often being asked from a visitor, “If I can hike Khopra Danda without a guide.” The answer is YES!. Yes, you can hike Khopra without a guide. If you are an independent hiker reading this article, we would recommend you to read a map very well before embarking on a trail.  You might find the path easy until Tadapani but not after the Tadapani. You may find a guide or other hikers along the way if you choose to trek during the primary season. So for independent hikers, we would recommend planning this trek during the primary season. Make sure to have two different kinds of the permit, one is ACAP, and another is an independent TIMS card which comes with green in color. You have to purchase this permit in advance, either in Pokhara or in Kathmandu.

Khopra Danda Trek Itinerary

Day 01 – Drive or flight from Kathmandu to Pokhara and overnight in Pokhara.
Day 02 – Drive from Pokhara to Naya pool and Trek to Ghandruk
Day 03 – Trek from Ghandruk to Tadapani
Day 04 – Trek from Tadapani to Dobato
Day 05 – Trek from Dobato to Bayeli
Day 06 – Trek from Bayeli to Khopra Danda
Day 07 – Rest day in Khopra danda and a side trip to Khayer Lake (4,660m)
Day 08 – Trek from Khopra Danda to Tatopani
Day 09 – Drive from Tatopani to Pokhara and drive or fly back to Kathmandu

Khopra Danda Trek  7 Days Itinerary

At present, the local jeep to Ghandruk is accessible. So If you want to make it this trek in 7 days, you have to drive from Pokhara to Nayapul and change another local jeep to Ghandruk. If you have enough time, we would still recommend spending one night in Ghandruk. As Ghnadruk village renowned Gurkhas inherited community and reach in Gurung culture. It is not only the culture but also the view from Ghandruk is the best. However, if you are running out of the time, you can jump straight to Tadapani on the first day. Here is the seven days outline itinerary for Khopra danda trek.

Day 01 – Drive or flight from Kathmandu to Pokhara and overnight in Pokhara.
Day 02 – Drive from Pokhara to Ghandruk and trek to Tadapani
Day 04 – Trek from Tadapani to Dobato
Day 05 – Trek from Dobato to Bayeli
Day 05 – Trek from Bayeli to Khopra Danda
Day 06 – Trek from Khopra Danda to Tatopani
Day 07 – Drive from Tatopani to Pokhara and drive or fly back to Kathmandu

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Rajendra Khanal (Raj)

Born and raised in Gorkha, Nepal, I am proud to call the Manaslu region my home! I have been in the travel business for over a decade from being assistance guide, leader, to being a manager. And finally today I am the founder of NEST Adventure. So you could say I know my way well enough in the Himalayas, especially in some of the off-the-beaten-trails in Nepal like Manaslu, Kanchenjunga and Mustang!

I am passionate about travelling and I strongly believe that seeing the world shouldn't break the bank (at least not too much!). I have backpacked to over 15 countries in Asia, Central America, USA, Canada, one-third of Europe, the Caribbean Islands, and Latin America.

I studied in the UK and moved to the United States. During that period, I had the opportunity of working with multinational companies which taught me how to deliver quality customer service in the business. As a world travelling backpacker myself, and travel expert for the Nepalese Himalayas, I started writing about my own country. Which I would love to share with you. In case you required free information about Nepal or join a group with our existing departure, (particularly If you are a solo hiker for the restricted area) please do not hesitate to visit my office in Thamel. We are located in the centre of Kathmandu called Thamel. I am happy to share a cup of Nepali tea and free information.

Our team at NEST has earned 5/5 star ratings on TripAdvisor. Don't forget to visit our customer feedback page on TripAdvisor. If you believe our expert team can be helpful in planning your next trip to Nepal, then please do not hesitate to contact me at nestadventure@gmail.com. I am also available 24x7 on WhatsApp  +977- 9851052042. If you are interested to know more about my travel journey follow me on  FacebookTwitter, and Instagram.

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