Annapurna Base Camp Heli Trek

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  • Trip Level: Adventures

The Annapurna Base Camp Heli Trek is the regular Annapurna Base Camp Itinerary with just a difference of returning from the base camp on a scintillating helicopter ride. It is one of the best treks in Nepal providing sufficient time to see the marvelous sights and the best of nature in the Annapurna region. Spending some days to reach the base camp through diverse landscapes, old-fashioned settlements and a wide array of faunal and floral assortments is an out-of-the-world experience. Flying back to Pokhara from the base camp on a chopper is another breath-taking instant as it provides ample opportunities to scrutinize the majestic Himalayas from a close proximity.

Commencing with an enthralling scenic flight from Kathmandu to Pokhara, this fabulous trekking package in Nepal that includes a return trip on a helicopter actually begins from Naya Pul. Walking past distinctive villages inhabited by ethnic communities, unevenly tilled paddy fields, luxuriant forests, barren uplands, numerous temples and Gompas, this popular trekking package in Nepal proffers almost everything that a trekker anticipates on a complete Himalayan outing. The undulating trekking trails on an awesome hike that lead through tranquil villages situated at the foothills of the Annapurna massif does not require any past trekking experience. This moderate trekking package in Nepal can be embarked upon by any individual who is a nature lover and possesses a levelheaded scale of fitness and is in good health condition.

The Annapurna Base Camp Heli Trek comes to an end after spending some time in the Annapurna Base Camp and flying back to Pokhara the same day on a helicopter and driving back to Kathmandu on a foolhardy road trip. Join Royal Holidays to twirl your dream into actuality and take delight in the theatrical views when you are trekking in one of the best trekking trails of the world.

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Day To Day Itinenary

  • 1
    Arrival in Kathmandu and trip preparation

    On arrival at Kathmandu airport and fulfilling immigration formalities, you will be met by one of our representatives near the exit gate of the airport with a placard for precise identification. You will then be transferred to your pre-assigned hotel room where you may stretch your legs and relax. If you arrive in Kathmandu during the daytime, you will meet your trip leader, other fellow members and be briefed about the trip before you return to your hotel room. In case of late arrival, you will be briefed about the trip by the representative who will meet you at the airport. Overnight in Kathmandu.

  • 2
    Fly Kathmandu to Pokhara; trek to Ghandruk

    Boarding on an early morning flight, you will step your foot into the beautiful lake city Pokhara. From Pokhara, you will take a road trip of around 1 hour to reach Naya Pul. As you start walking, you will arrive at the small town of Birethanti passing a couple of suspension bridges, bamboo forests, and waterfalls. From Birethanti, you will continue hiking to Ghandruk, a picturesque village mostly inhabited by Gurung people. Ghandruk also happens to be the biggest village along the Annapurna trekking trail where you can see the old stone and slate-roofed houses lining the slope. Visit the Gurung museum. Overnight in Ghandruk.

  • 3
    Trek from Ghandruk to Chhomrong

    After a fulsome breakfast in Ghandruk, you will make an ascent to the top of a ridge until Kimrong enjoying remarkable views of Annapurna, Hiunchuli, Machhapuchhre, and Gangapurna etc. From Komrong, you can see Chhomrong on the other side of the mountain separated by Kimrong River. A steep descend from this ridge takes you to the river from where it is another steep climb to a ridge at Chere Danda. From here it a gentle downhill walk till Chhomrong, a beautiful village at the lap of the Annapurna massif. On the opposite side, you will be able to see the Sinuwa village, which is also an important trekking trail on the Annapurna route. Chhomrong is the gateway to the Annapurna region from where you will get a grandstand view of the Himalayan peaks. Overnight in Chhomrong.

  • 4
    Trek from Chhomrong to Bamboo

    Your trek today begins with a walk towards the Chhomrong River passing through the village via the 2500 stone steps with teahouses on either side of the trail. After 20 minutes, you will reach the river from where the trail climbs steeply on stone steps after the bridge. A short moment of climb will bring you to Tilche village with very few settlements. Yet another 10 minutes of walk will lead you to Lower Sinuwa from where the trail again climbs steeply on the stone staircases before reaching Upper Sinuwa. Beyond upper Sinuwa, it is the Annapurna Sanctuary region and it is marked by dense forests and clustered teahouses. Views from Sinuwa village are phenomenal and you can observe a lot of trekkers making their way towards the base camp while a handful of them returning after the trip. After a short rest, you will continue further on a mud trail that climbs up gradually for half an hour till the trail heads down and transforms into a beautiful forest of bamboo that leads to Kuldighar. From here, it is a natural downhill ramble through dense forests and the sound of the gushing Modi Khola alongside till you reach Bamboo, your destination today. Overnight in Bamboo.

  • 5
    Trek from Bamboo to Deurali

    Leaving Bamboo after breakfast today, your trek starts towards Deurali through damp and cold forests of bamboo with the steady rise and progressive steep sections until you arrive at Himalaya hotel and get exposed to the rays of the sun. Exceptional views of the glacial river flowing below can be cherished from this point. With yet another steep climb, you will surpass the Hinku Cave from where you will follow the path into the valley crossing the rocky avalanche area. The valley looks theatrical with the misty clouds, steep rocky slopes, and the magnificent waterfalls. It is a climb back up through rocky boulders and sparse vegetation till you arrive at Deurali, a spot with an astounding glimpse of the surrounding hills and Mt. Dhaulagiri. Overnight in Deurali.

  • 6
    Trek from Deurali to Annapurna Base Camp via Machhapuchhre Base Camp

    After a sumptuous breakfast, you are all geared up for one of the most scenic stretches of your hike climbing through boulders to cross the last lodge at Deurali. The trail from here opens up to the valley with Modi Khola and an enticing glimpse of Machhapuchhre and Gangapurna in the distance. It is a soft hike on a more leveled path till Bagar continuing past the abandoned lodges. After crossing a bridge over the Modi Khola, it is a strenuous ascent till you reach Machhapuchhre Base Camp. The most fascinating thing today is the terrain on this stretch is marked with small snow bridges that need to be crossed, while you are also entering grasslands, and small flowering plants adorn the trail in multi-hues. From here the Annapurna Base Camp is about 90 degrees to the left and the initial 1 km hike is a steep ascent. Climbing gently the path widens and sensational views of the towering Himalayan peaks can be sighted. Crossing the gorge that is the only way into this area, you will finally reach Annapurna Base Camp that offers mesmerizing views of the Machhapuchhre, the Annapurna ranges, Hiunchuli, Gangapurna, Gandharvachuli, and many other peaks. Overnight in Annapurna Base Camp.

  • 7
    : Annapurna Base Camp exploration, fly back to Pokhara by Helicopter

    A couple of hours exploring in and around Annapurna Base Camp today provides ample opportunities to capture awesome pictures in your camera. You will be delighted to catch superb sights of some Himalayan giants such as Machhapuchhre, Hiunchuli, Annapurna South, Annapurna I and many more while you sip your hot coffee. After spending a wondrous moment at the base camp, you will board on a whirlybird that will take you back to Pokhara. This enlivening copter ride will soar above the majestic Himalayan peaks and startling forests of rhododendron before landing in the exquisite lake city. While in Pokhara, you can spend rest of your evening relaxing at a Spa, stroll around the high-flying lakeside or sit around a corner in a music bar and enjoy some live music along with your favorite Gorkha or Everest beer. Overnight in Pokhara.

  • 8
    Drive from Pokhara to Kathmandu

    Post breakfast at your hotel’s restaurant, it is time to say adieu to the unruffled lake city of Pokhara and board on a tourist bus or a comfortable private car to experience a 6-7 hour road trip back to Kathmandu. This road trip drives you through picturesque greeneries, small settlements, agricultural farms, rivers, meandering road, and beautiful mountain backdrops. On arrival at Kathmandu, you will be transferred to your hotel room. In the evening, you are free to catch up on some last minute shopping or simply stroll around the bustling streets of Thamel or sit down in an upbeat pub enjoying every sip of your favorite Nepali beer and live musical bands performing your favorite songs. Overnight in Kathmandu.

  • 9
    International Departure

    You will be dropped off at the airport well ahead of your scheduled flight time by one of our representatives. If you have an evening flight, you may wish to visit certain heritage sites of Kathmandu on your own. However, if you wish to extend your holidays in Nepal, then Royal Holidays are ever ready to create another wonderful trip in the Himalayas.

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Read our FAQ that answers general questions

Itinenary Note

This is a standard itinerary designed with a view to allow sufficient acclimatization period for trekkers. However, if you are not satisfied with this itinerary or wish to modify it according to your needs, we will happily do it for you. You are free to choose your own hotels, guides or porters if you wish to. We are always there to customize or tailor-make your trips as per your plans and convenience.

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Inclusion & Exclusion

What's Included

⦁ All airport arrivals and departure on a private vehicle
⦁ Accommodation in Kathmandu and Pokhara (bed and breakfast)
⦁ Teahouse accommodation during trekking
⦁ All meal during the entire trek
⦁ Pokhara to Kathmandu transportation on a tourist bus
⦁ Highly experienced English speaking trekking guide & a porter
⦁ Staff costs including their salary, insurance, equipment, food, and accommodation
⦁ Down jacket and sleeping bag (to be returned after trip completion)
⦁ Trekking bag, T-shirt and trekking map
⦁ All trekking permits like TIMS & ACAP and other necessary paperwork
⦁ Helicopter flight charges from Annapurna base camp to Pokhara
⦁ All government and local taxes
⦁ Emergency oxygen cylinder (inside the helicopter only)
⦁ Company service charges
⦁ Comprehensive medical kits

What's not Included

⦁ Nepali visa fee
⦁ International airfare
⦁ Excess baggage charges
⦁ Meals in Kathmandu and Pokhara (except breakfast)
⦁ Extra night accommodation in Kathmandu or Pokhara
⦁ Personal travel and rescue insurance
⦁ Personal expenses
⦁ Pokhara to Kathmandu transportation
⦁ Donation or tips
⦁ Any other cost not mentioned in the Include section

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Frequently Asked Questions

  • Can you tell us about the regular types of flights operated by your company?

    Royal Holidays offer flights as per the needs of the clients ranging from adventure flights, pilgrimage tours, heli-ski tours, VIP flights, aerial survey tours, filming & photography tours, charter flights and long line missions for rescue and evacuation, to name a few.

  • What are the types of aircraft used during the helicopter tours in Nepal?

    For all heli tours that we operate, we use choppers belonging to companies like Air dynasty, Heli Everest, Summit Helicopters, Mountain Helicopters, and Manang Air. The fleet of aircraft is mostly manufactured by a worldwide leader in civil and military helicopter production, Eurocopter of France. These Airbus helicopters from the Ecureuli family namely AS-350 B2, AS-350 B3E (H125), AS-350 B3+, EC-130 B4, and a Jet Ranger series Bell 206BB III are supported by Turbomeca 2D1 engines designed especially for high altitude performance – they are certified to fly up to 23000 ft.

  • How experienced are the pilots flying the helicopters?

    The pilots who will be flying helicopters during the heli tours possess extensive flying hours and vast experience in the high mountain regions. They will provide our guests with the best touring moments by their excellent narration skills and deep knowledge of the flying locations. These pilots receive regular proficiency training that is in conformity to the requirements and standards of the Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal (CAAN). Professional instructors from abroad are annually invited to evaluate and train the Nepali pilots with the latest techniques and procedures of operation.

  • What is the difference between a heli-trek and a heli-tour?

    Heli-trekking means an adventure trip which comprises of both trekking as well as helicopter ride simultaneously. These heli treks are gaining rapid popularity among travelers who have lesser time but are ready to spend extra bucks to complete their tour in a shorter period of time. Heli treks could mean initially trekking to a certain point of place and then traveling back on a helicopter. It could also mean flying to a certain point, then trekking to another point of a place, and then flying back. On the other hand, heli-tour is a complete aerial sightseeing tour to discover the scenic brilliance of mountainous Nepal; it does not include walking at all. These tours are perfect for those who have no time to trek in the exotic destinations in remote areas and would require many days to reach through land transportation. The heli tours to any destination in Nepal are normally completed within a single day.

  • How many persons can be accommodated in one helicopter? Are there any special seating arrangements to be followed?

    Helicopters in Nepal can accommodate 5 to 6 passengers excluding the pilot, depending on the destination of the flight. For example, a flight from Kathmandu to Lukla accommodates 6 persons at one go, but if you were to fly from Syangboche airstrip to Everest Base Camp or Kala Patthar, then pilots refuse to carry more than 5 persons. For more than 5 persons, the pilot would suggest making two trips rather than taking risk against any untoward incidents. The weight and balance of the chopper demand an appropriate seating arrangement. Generally, there is one seat adjacent to the pilot’s seat, and 4 to 5 seats directly behind him. Each of the passenger seats provides excellent aerial views.

  • Who will be leading my helicopter tour? Are the leaders well trained and experienced?

    With more than decades of experience leading visitors from various nationalities and explaining the marvels of the Himalayan region, all our guides including the pilots are connoisseurs in their jobs. They are highly knowledgeable about the local tradition and culture, indigenous flora and fauna, responsible and sustainable tourism practices, and the traditional village lifestyles. Additionally, the guides are proficiently trained with medical awareness so that they can cope with any emergencies or critical situations that may arise during the tour.

  • Is it possible for me to charter a private helicopter tour and spend time at a particular destination as long as I want?

    Yes, it is possible for you to charter a private helicopter tour to any of the several wonderful destinations in Nepal. However, it is not possible to spend time as long as you wish at some places situated at higher altitudes where the air is thin and one could be hit by Acute Mountain Sickness. So, at higher altitudes, our team will allocate a limited time period for you to spend. Make sure not to stay longer than the assigned time as even the healthiest person could be a victim of AMS.

  • I am a solo traveler; can I join a group for a heli tour?

    Unless you charter a flight, this heli tour is normally a group-joining trip for all solo travelers. We will be happy to arrange your heli tour with another group of travelers on your preferred flight date and your preferred location provided that you book your tour with us well ahead of time.

  • Do you operate pilgrimage tours on a helicopter?

    Yes, we do organize pilgrimage tours for our clients to various destinations in Nepal as per their requirement. Some of our popular helicopter pilgrimage tours include Gosaikunda Helicopter Tour, Muktinath Helicopter Tour, Pathivara Helicopter Tour, Halesi Mahadev Helicopter Tour, Damodar Kunda Helicopter Tour, and Lumbini Helicopter Tour. Besides, we also organize heli-trek to Mansarovar & Mt. Kailash across the Tibetan border.

  • What are the peak seasons for heli tours?

    The main tourist season in Nepal falls during the months of March through May, and from mid-September to November. These are the months when the sky is blue and visitors get clear views of the mountains and the neighborhood environment. Although we operate heli tours during all months except the rainy seasons, the peak season would probably be during the months when the inflow of tourists in Nepal is in maximum.

  • Is there any age restriction to fly on a helicopter? Can I take my children with me on Everest Base Camp Heli Tour? Are children charged full price?

    No, there are no age restrictions for touring in helicopters, unless specified by a qualified medical practitioner. Since the Everest Base Camp Helicopter Tour is a high altitude trip, we recommend not taking children below the age of 10 years along with you. For other tours that do not require the chopper to land at higher altitudes, children of all ages may accompany you. Children above 2 years old will be charged full price and they need to sit in their own seat. Those below 2 years of age will not be charged and must sit on the lap of an adult.

  • What is the booking process for Everest Base Camp Heli Tour with your company?

    The booking process for the Everest Base Camp Heli Tour is easy and can be booked from anywhere in the world. Online booking through our website is the best way to book your heli tour in the Himalayas. Tours can also be booked through phone calls, email inquiries or via our social platforms. We will require the trip name, the exact date for the trip, a photocopy of your passport (with expiry date), and 25% charge as an advance trip payment. Only on receiving your passport copy, trip details and the advance payment will your trip be confirmed.

  • How do I make my payment? What payment methods do you accept?

    You can make your payment through the basic payment methods such as bank transfers, online payment or credit cards. We accept Visa/Master Card or any other widely used credit cards with an extra 4% bank surcharge. If partial payment was made during the booking process, the remaining amount must be paid before the actual tour in our office either in cash or through credit card.

  • What are the provisions for drinking water during the heli tours?

    It is recommended that you carry a few bottles of safe drinking water during your heli tour. If you require more water during the trip, then it can be purchased at the place where the chopper lands either for breakfast or lunch.

  • How much baggage will I be allowed to carry during the heli tour?

    The maximum baggage allowance during your helicopter tour in the Himalayas is 10 kg per person. Since the heli tour will comprise of a single day, it is highly advised to carry just the necessary items sufficient for the day.

  • What is the meaning of emergency medical evacuation?

    Emergency medical evacuation, also known as medivac, is the timely needed resourceful operation to provide medical attention. Evacuation is done by transferring an injured or critically sick traveler requiring urgent care from the remote areas to the rural hospital equipped with prerequisite facilities using helicopters. In our case, we lift the injured clients to one of the best hospitals in the country like Norvic hospital, Grande hospital, Swacon hospital or the Vayodha hospital that are well furnished to endow with the best medical consideration to our clients.

  • Do the weather conditions affect helicopter tours?

    Weather conditions obviously will affect your helicopter tour. All helicopter flights in Nepal function in VFR conditions i.e. Visual Flying Rules and it is required to have good weather with clear visibility before the chopper soars up in the sky. During the monsoon season, the weather is not clear owing to the heavy fog and misty atmosphere. In such cases, the tours may not take place at the scheduled time. However, early morning mountain flights still may be possible that offers great views of the snow-clad Himalayan peaks. If there is light rain that does not affect visibility, there are chances to be able to fly and complete the tour. But in case of heavy showers or thick fog, the flights may have to be canceled; the weather in the mountains is unpredictable and change quickly.

  • What happens if my heli tour to Annapurna Base Camp is canceled due to bad weather?

    In case your trip is canceled due to deteriorating weather conditions, we will try to reschedule it for a later time the same day or the next morning. However, if you can’t make it on the next day due to your flight back home, we will refund your flight cost in accordance with the booking term and conditions.

  • What is the best heli tour that your company operates?

    Each of Royal Holidays heli tour draws attention to particular areas of interest. It is our dedicated effort to make each trip the best experience for our clients. Some of our repeat clients choose different trip each time they book with us to feel the difference at various destinations. As such, we cannot mark a particular heli tour as the best amongst all as it totally depends on the experience of the clients that make the trip worthwhile and memorable.

  • Do you have a fixed schedule for heli tours? What is the best time to fly?

    Normally, we do not have a fixed schedule as tours are established based on the request from the clients for a particular destination. Normally morning time is the best time for any helicopter tour in Nepal provided the weather and operational conditions are favorable; however, we do fly at any time on the request of our guests.

  • Does the helicopter land at the base camp on a one-day EBC heli tour?

    Depending on the weather conditions, the helicopter will land at Everest Base Camp. Sometimes, it is not possible to land at the base camp due to the high wind speed or due to landslides sweeping away the landing spots. But normally, we also stop at the magnificent viewpoint of Kala Patthar for 15 minutes which offers astounding 360-degree views of the Mt. Everest and other Himalayan ranges.

  • What dress should I wear during my heli tour, and why?

    We suggest you wear something comfortable and casual especially dark colored shirts or tops for superb photography sessions. Bright colored clothes, on the other hand, are not encouraged as they reflect back an intense dazzling glare on the windows which may refract in the photos. Depending on the season, you are also advised to wear clothes that help you keep warm enough at the mountain heights.

  • Will I be able to see everything that is mentioned in your tour description on my heli trip?

    Our tour description is written with precise information from our guides and the pilots. We will make sure to cover every site mentioned on the tour overview on our dossier or as per your customized itinerary. Sometimes the pilots need to adjust their flight paths for gusty wind and the bad weather due to which you may not be able to see certain parts of the area. But you need to understand that your safety and comfort are our prime concern during your heli tour in Nepal.

  • Is it possible to reschedule my heli tour? What if I need to cancel my tour?

    Yes, it is possible to reschedule your heli tour provided that you inform us at least 72 hours before the flight time. However, if you wish to reschedule your tour 6 hours before, then we will charge you with a nominal fee to reschedule your flight; flights cannot be rescheduled within six hours of the actual flight time. If you need to cancel your heli tour, you need to email us at least 72 hours in advance; canceling your tour within 24 hours is non-refundable.

  • Do you arrange rescue and evacuation by coordinating with my insurance company?

    Yes, of course, we will be glad to communicate with your insurance company back home and arrange rescue and evacuation or air ambulance and charter services from any mountainous region of Nepal.

  • How safe is it to land at Kala Patthar on EBC heli tour?

    Clients’ safety is our prime concern. We are cautious at all times regarding your well being and health. The helicopters used during our tours are in fact, very powerful and the pilots are highly skilled and professional with ample flying hours in their collars. One thing to consider while landing at Kala Patthar, the highest point on this tour, is altitude sickness. If you feel dizzy or an ache in your head or any sorts of uneasiness, you are advised to inform it to the guide immediately. It is very obvious that you can’t stay for a long time at Kala Patthar, so we will not stop for more than 15 minutes here.

  • Is it safe for pregnant women to undertake the heli tours in Nepal?

    There are no constraints for pregnant women from embarking on a remarkable heli tour as such, but it is advisable to undergo a thorough check-up for any issues of complications a few days before the actual tour. It is always wise to consult with your gynecologist before undertaking any activities that involve rather harsh conditions.