Restricted Area Trekking in Nepal: An Exploration of the Less Explored Mountain Wonders

Restricted Area Trekking in Nepal

When it comes to trekking in Nepal, exploring the restricted areas in the mountains has a different but equally wonderful charm as other regular trekking regions. Restricted area trekking in Nepal is not a ‘not allowed’ region but it requires a special permit from the government of Nepal to be in the region. The government issues special permits for a certain period of time for the trekkers to be in the region.

Why is it called a restricted area if you can visit there?

The government of Nepal had managed some of the Himalayan regions as restricted to the outer world until the late 90s. People other than locals could not go there at that time. Thus, the name restricted area came into effect. But the government has made those areas accessible to everyone in recent years. Trekkers to these areas still need to obtain special permission from the government of Nepal and carry a mandatory guide to take them along. Trekking in those areas requires travelers to pay more royalty, than in other regular trekking areas, to the government.

To go trekking in the restricted area, you have to obtain a permit from the Department of Immigration. For regular trekking adventures, Nepal Tourism Board issues the permit.

What is it like trekking in a restricted area?

As the restricted areas in the mountains have been opened in recent years for the trekkers, the most significant thing to experience in the region is the untouched culture of the area. The mountain vistas can overwhelm anyone and we find fewer people trekking there. It may feel more into the wilderness than other popular trekking areas, but you will gain an experience that no regular trekking adventure gives you.

Where does the area lie?

Restricted areas in the mountains are located in various parts of the country. From the Upper Dolpo region in the west to the Kanchenjunga region in the east, the restricted areas are attracting trekkers there now. These areas provide timeless villages, pristine nature, and incredible cultural practices. The restricted areas have their own charm as the trekking destinations.

List of Restricted Area Trekking in Nepal

Upper Mustang Trek

Upper Mustang is one of the most visited restricted regions in Nepal. The jagged mountainous landscape, ancient cultures, and Himalayan view make the area perfect to explore the place. Although the royalty to trek in this area is high, USD 500 per person for the first 10 days and USD 50 per person per day for the extra days, it is worth going there. You will admire the area and the experiences and memories you collect.

Manaslu Circuit Trek

Manaslu Circuit Trek has been able to establish itself as an alternative adventure to the Annapurna Circuit Trek. This trek takes you to explore the region of Mt. Manaslu (8,156m) – the eighth highest mountain in the world. This area charges up to USD 70 for 7 days trek in the region. The royalty varies from season to season. Any additional day charges USD 7 per person per day.

Upper Dolpo Trek

This trek is an example of wilderness at its best. It takes you to explore the western mountainous region in Nepal. Trekking through the remote mountains in Upper Dolpo charges USD 500 per person for the first 10 days and any additional day adds USD 10 per person per day.

Nar Phu Valley Trek

A recent addition to the Nepali adventure trekking areas, Nar Phu valley is the exploration of the remote Himalayan part of the Manang district. The wilderness of the region and the timelessness of the human settlement is simply unparalleled. You have to pay USD 90 for the royalty to trek in the area for a week.

Likewise, there are several other restricted trekking areas that are equally charming and wonderful. Those areas are Tsum Valley Trek, Lower Dolpo Trek, Kanchenjunga Trek, Rara Trek, etc.

These regions were open for trekkers recently or only a few years back. The remoteness of the locality, the charm of the untouched culture and civilization, simplicity of life, and magnificence of nature make trekking in the region a fabulous adventure.