|Don’t miss these villages when you trek Around Annapurna
Nar & Phu villages are located off the Around Annapurna main trekking trail en-route to Manang. It is surrounded by Peri Himalaya to the north, Gangla and Gangru Himal to the east and Damodar Himal to the west. The villages are situated at an altitude of 3820 meters. Being nestled inside the valley it is less windy but the lands are dry. Prof. David Snellgrove, a renowned Tibetologist, is the first westerner to have visited these villages. He described the villages and the valley in his book Himalayan Pilgrimage. Their spoken dialect is different from Manang and Tibetan. Most of the houses are two-story with an entrance from the top. There are three Buddhist monasteries. Phu is located at the upper end of the valley. As in high mountain area, people of the Nar Phu descends to warm region from December to February. People of Nar have a closer relationship with Manang. Unlike people from Manang, they do not trade widely, rather concentrate on nearby areas in the south. The Gurungs of Lamjung use the lamas of Nar Phu as they believe they are expert therefore they had great influence.
The villages were lost around 1960 at the advent of Khampas (Tibetan warrior) until 1975. Khampas made their actual presence from 1964 and lasted until they were driven out of Nepal entirely. They operated insurgency activities in Tibet after Dalai Lama escaped to India. The valley was opened to foreigners with a special permit from 1985. Since then Nar and Phu are opened to the outside world. The Khampas were powerful than the local so they dominated the villages. Actually, the valley was a secure place for them. Though it is in close proximity to Lamjung in the south yet for central administration it is beyond their outlook post. In many aspects, Manang dominated every aspect of Nar Phu though at a later stage Lamjung exerted their influence as people of Nar Phu detested superiority exhibited by Manang. That is also one reason for the oblivion condition that isolated them from the rest and deprived them of development benefits happening around them. They have not been able to get out of the social clutch and the valley that surrounded them.
Occasional visitors were climbers. They go climbing Himlung Himal (7126m) to the east on the border with Tibet (China) of Phu and Kanguru (6981m) east of Nar. French expedition to Kanguru in 2005 had met a big climbing disaster due to avalanche that happened near Meta. In 2009 another climbing disaster happened at Himlung due to an unexpected avalanche. Technically both peaks are challenging than most trekking peaks.
A special permit is required to visit these two villages. Contact us for detail
The valley has an access trekking route from North West through Mustang that travels through the high pass at Thorila (5529m) and Saribung La. These are not regular route used by the people of Nar & Phu. However, climbers liked to cross this pass after climbing the Saribung peak (6327m). Most trekkers visiting Nar Phu liked to cross Kang la (5306m) to reach Manang via Humde (airport) and Braga on the other side of the valley. Other interesting places in this region are Tilicho Lake (4920m) and trekking peaks – Chulu West, Chulu East, Chulu Central and Pisang peak (6091). Pisang peak, a training peak of the Nepal Mountaineering Association, is quite popular.