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Annapurna Circuit Trek in May is one of the most popular trekking destinations in Nepal. ACT alone is the busiest trekking destination and combining it with May month will truly increase its beauty. You will experience stunning landscapes, snow-capped mountains, and blooming flowers.
The trek takes you through charming cultural and natural wonders. You will also culminate in a peaceful panoramic view from the tallest pass in the world, Thorong La Pass. Before all that explore the beautiful city of Pokhara, where you can enjoy the sights and sounds of city life.
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You will also indulge in new cultures of Magars and Gurungs. Get to know their lifestyles, and rituals and visit their sacred site. Other amazing wonders like Muktinath, Tatopani, and Natural hot springs await you on this journey.
So if you have made up your mind for ACT in May, then let’s get into more details.
- Breathtaking views of the tallest mountains, like Annapurna, Fishtail, and Dhaulagiri.
- Exploration through the tallest pass in Nepal Throang La Pass
- Learn about the endangered flora and fauna in the Annapurna Conservation Area.
- Reach the sacred place for Hindus and Buddhists in Muktinath
- Exploration and breakfast in Marpha.
- Meet local Gurungs and Magars around the area and learn about their cultures and lifestyles.
- Enjoy local apple delicacies like Apple pie, Apple Pickles, and Marpha which is the kind of a local drink.
- Bath and relax in natural hot springs in Tatopani.
Weather and Temperature in May
Annapurna Circuit Trek is just a fun adventure in Nepal. However when it may the fun increases twice due to optimal weather and temperature. Trekkers around the world love clear weather and low possibility of rainfall. Since May is the peak spring season there is very less chance of rainfall in lower altitudes.
Another advantage of trekking in May is the surroundings and routes of the trail. The blooming rhododendron trail road leading your way will mesmerize your heart. Many barren landscapes are now blooming with flowers; since the routes are not wet, walking is easier.
The weather is warmer comparably to winter or monsoon seasons but it is not as hot as the summer season. Since May is the last month of the spring season, the weather and temperature are moderate.
During day time as the sun lasts for almost 8 hours, the temperature rises from 12 degrees to 20 degrees. In comparison, mornings and nights are colder as the temperature drops down to 0 to – 5 degrees.
The tallest peak of the Annapurna Circuit, Thorong La Pass is always cold throughout the year. So you must always pack warm woolen clothes while trekking. You must also be wary of rainfall during late May, especially in lower altitudes.
Is Annapurna Circuit Trek Difficult in May?
Annapurna Circuit Trek in May is quite a challenging but achievable feat for any trekkers. The trek is undoubtedly difficult, especially for beginners. The experienced trekkers put Annapurna Circuit to moderate difficulty.
In May, Annapurna Circuit Trek is less difficult than in other seasons like monsoon and winter. There is no rainfall and snowfall so trekking routes are not as difficult and dangerous to scale.
The weather is clear with blooming flowers all around and there are plenty of teahouses and lodges for your services.
Generally in other seasons, the higher altitude teahouses are lodges are not open. So it causes more difficulty for inexperienced trekkers to settle in camps, tents, or small tea houses with minimal services.
Despite being a pleasant moon, some factors still cause difficulty during ACT in May. The distance and duration you have to travel per day will leave you exhausted and fatigued.
Furthermore, there is another issue of Altitude Sickness and physical fitness. The trek reaches over 5000 height so there are chances of altitude sickness especially for beginners. Apart from some difficulty generally May is almost perfect for the ACT.
There are no signs of common natural disasters like floods, landslides, or snowstorms but you always have to be careful.
Hence, it is quite clear, despite being a challenging trek, that ACT is very achievable even for beginners. All you need to be physically fit and be careful regarding altitude sickness. If any beginners want to explore Annapurna Circuit Trek, May is the perfect month for them to gain experience.
Acclimatization and Altitude Sickness in Annapurna Circuit
Acclimatization is the gradual process of adapting to the new climate or surroundings. Many people take time to get acclimatized to new surroundings whenever they move to different countries. However, acclimatization at a higher altitude is a whole different situation.
Altitude Acclimatization is very important to trekkers who are aiming to climb altitude quickly. Unlike moving from one country to another altitude change is extremely dangerous so you have to be cautious. Altitude acclimatization helps you get used to the oxygen level of certain altitudes.
When you go to higher altitudes, your body needs time to adjust to the lower oxygen levels. This is the acclimatization process which can take a few days to weeks. During this time, your body naturally produces more red blood cells to help you cope with the conditions.
To avoid altitude sickness while trekking on the Annapurna circuit, it’s important to climb slowly and gradually to higher elevations on the trail. Altitude Sickness is the type of sickness that trekkers feel when they try to ascend the altitude too quickly.
When your body doesn’t get time to adjust to changes in air pressure and lack of oxygen it starts to feel weak. The symptoms of altitude sickness are low blood pressure, dizziness, headache, nausea, vomiting, shortness of breath, joint and back pains etc.
Altitude sickness can occur when you climb to higher elevations too quickly. To prevent this, it’s important to gradually ascend and descend during your trek. Avoid continuous ascent to higher altitudes without giving your body enough time to acclimate.
When you go to higher altitudes, the level of oxygen in the air is lower. This can make it challenging to breathe and can also make your body more susceptible to weakness, diseases, and minor health issues.
Expert advisors and trekking guides have a practice of marking one or two days as rest days. These acclimatization days are mainly to prevent altitude sickness.
During our ACT the acclimatization day is the fourth day of the trek. After reaching Manang and staying overnight, the next day you will not climb any altitude. Instead, you will just explore around Manang district or if climb some altitude return to Manang.
Altitude sickness can also occur if your body is suffering from dehydration. So it’s essential to drink plenty of water during your trek and keep yourself warm.
To avoid altitude sickness, it’s important to stay warm. Wear warm clothing and drink hot drinks like tea with ginger and honey. These drinks will help keep your body warm while you’re trekking.
To cure altitude sickness during trekking, it’s highly recommended that you always carry medicine such as Diamax. It can help relieve you from the illness, allowing you to quickly lower your elevation. In some cases, altitude sickness can become so severe that you might have to stop your trek. If this happens, you can get a helicopter rescue service. That’s why experts advise preparing for altitude sickness beforehand rather than waiting to get cured.
Annapurna Circuit Trek Permit
Annapurna Circuit Trek is one of the most beautiful experiences for any trekkers. However, not everyone can enjoy the said trek as you need some permits. Every trekking region in Nepal requires two kinds of permits and they are as follows:
TIMS or Trekkers Information Management System is a compulsory trekking permit for any trekkers. This is the must-have trekking permit for any foreign trekkers wanting to trek anywhere in Nepal.
You can issue permits from both the Trekking Agencies Association of Nepal (TAAN) and the Nepal Tourism Board (NTB). TIMS is extremely necessary for the safety and security of any tourists and trekkers visiting Nepal.
The cost for TIMS in Nepal is $6 for the trekkers from SAARC nation. If you are a trekker from any other nation than SAARC countries then you have to pay $20 or Rs 2,000 in local currency.
Another important permit you need to trek the Annapurna Circuit is the Annapurna Conservation Area Permit. Annapurna region has been a huge conservation area ever since 1992. It is one of the biggest protected areas in Nepal which is the reason any foreign personnel must issue ANCAP.
Manang, Mustang, Myagdi, and Lamjung are the areas to fall under the Annapurna Conservation Area. Hence you need these two permits if you want to trek any trekking area in Annapurna region.
For ANCAP the cost is $2 or Rs 200 for SAARC personnel. If you are from another country you have to pay Rs2000 or $20. Keep in mind you can issue these permits either in Kathmandu or Pokhara.
You must show these permits at multiple points of entry or checkpoints when you are trekking the Annapurna Region.
Travel Insurance is extremely necessary for anyone who is going trekking in the Annapurna Region. If you want to take an adventure pack then it is advisable to insure your trip. There are many kinds of insurance services for your trek in Nepal. They are simple travel insurance, advanced, and Extreme adventure packs based on altitude.
So if you are planning to trek Annapurna Circuit Trek we advise you to take Extreme Adventure pack services. After landing in Nepal immediately register your insurance with the trekking agencies in Nepal. You must give them your travel insurance certificates and emergency phone number.
Travel insurance in Nepal also covers Ambulance costs and Helicopter Rescue costs. If you don’t have travel insurance and you need helicopter rescue it can cost you over $4000. So it is best to get travel insurance before going on any trekking program.
What is the altitude of Thorong La Pass?
Throng La Pass lies at an altitude of over 5416. It is the highest pass in the world and is one of the major attractions of ACT.
Do you get rainfall in May during ACT?
May is the last month before pre-monsoon begins. Hence in the latter part of May, you can get slight rainfall in lower altitudes.
Do I need a guide and porter in my ACT?
Guides are compulsory according to government rules. If you want to make your trek easier by not having to carry your bags then you can hire a porter. They will also keep an eye on your bags and loads.
Is Annapurna Circuit Trek difficult in May?
Annapurna Circuit Trek is a reasonably difficult trek but in May it becomes a little easier.
How many days does it take to complete the ACT?
It normally takes 12 to 22 days to complete and experience Annapurna Circuit Trek.
Hence Annapurna Circuit Trek in May can be your pleasant experience to date. The Spring season, blooming flowers, adequate temperature, and weather for trekking make it the best month.
So if you are planning for Annapurna Circuit Trek then you might consider it in the Spring season (March to May). You can also trek the circuit in the Autumn season (September to November).