Packing for the Annapurna Circuit
Packing for the Annapurna Circuit can be quite a challenge be a job. Of course you don’t want to take too much with you, but you don’t want to regret that you didn’t bring something. What you take with you also depends a bit on whether you choose a porter (someone who carries your things upstairs for you) or not. We chose to wear our own backpack and therefore to travel as lightly as possible. If you choose a porter you can share the weight a bit more together, but even then it is so neat to leave everything unnecessary nice in your hotel.
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Where do you leave your stuff during the draw
We decided to first have 2 more nights at the Silver Oak hotel before the draw. A very nice hotel with large spacious rooms and a perfect location. The people are super friendly and can arrange everything for you. A room for 2 people costs 20 euros incl. Breakfast. Slightly more expensive than we would normally book, but as we were struggling with 2 weeks ahead, we thought we deserved this. Very nice detail is that you can reach the top of the hotel on the roof where you have a beautiful view of the Dhaulagiri.
We decided to use our normal backpack during the trek. We took more than half out of our backpacks and left it in the hotel. You can also leave our laptops, tomtom, hard disk and other valuables behind here and are really unnecessary to take with you.
Take enough money with you for the entire draw, since there are no ATMs.
Every 2 or 3 hours you come across a village again, so you are never completely isolated. A complete first aid kit is therefore not necessary. The most important medications to take with you are altitude sickness pills, diarrhea inhibitors, paracetamol, patches and blister patches. Many people are against altitude sickness pills, so we decided not to take them, but to take them. Super stupid, because after day 6 I became very sick. Altitude sickness pills can make it easier for your body to get used to altitude. The only drawback is that the side effects can sometimes be annoying and much like those of altitude sickness. It is therefore good to try the pills a day before you start. I had no side effects and after using the pills I had no more problems.
Hiking shoes and jacket
We often get the question if you can also do the circuit on sneakers. Yes, of course you can, but then it is a lot heavier and more dangerous. You have less grip, faster cold feet, your feet will certainly get wet, less support. In short, just get good shoes. I am very happy with my Hanwag walking shoes.
Do not bring too many toiletries. Hair gel, makeup and the like are not needed anyway. You wear a thick hat every day and believe me the least you worry about during the draw is what you look like. A small bottle of shampoo and toilet paper is what I brought. I used my sunscreen as a day cream. Wet wipes are nice to take with you. Hot showers are scarce, so showering at a given moment is no longer an option.
Purchase or rent clothing
The best thing is of course to bring your own clothes, but this is not always an option. Since we were traveling, we decided to take the most important ones ourselves and participate in Pokhara and Kathmandu . We had both purchased a softshell jacket beforehand, which we were able to use several times during the trip. Of course we also brought our hiking shoes from home. It is very important that you walk in your walking shoes well. Nothing is so annoying to be left with thick blisters after 3 days. We had also already purchased thermal underwear at the Decathlon. We purchased the other articles in Pokhara .
Tip! Buy everything in one store. This way you can arrange a substantial discount.
Renting a sleeping bag: Renting a sleeping bag cost around 1 euro per day. We decided to rent the sleeping bag for 17 days, but finally came back after 13 days. We just got the money we didn’t use back.
Fleece vest and hiking pants: everywhere you have shops where you can purchase fleece vests and hiking pants from North Face. Naturally very fake, but the products are of excellent quality. We paid around 5-7 euros per item.
Hats, scarf and socks: Nothing is as much fun as a real Nepalese hat. You can buy these hats for less than a euro. We also opted for a windstopper instead of a thick scarf. Worked perfectly. I also bought my hiking socks in Pokhara and they were really nice.
Snacks : the food during the draw is really great, but a bounty, snicker or muesli bar is really nice for a change. If you still want to buy this on the road, you will lose 3 euros per bar. No joke. We took about 1 bar per person for the journey. This was ultimately too much. I think 10 bars per person is more than enough to take with you.
I think that with renting the sleeping bag, buying clothes, bottles, medicines etc. we lost something of 60 euros.
Packing list Annapurna
- Backpack with rain cover
- Good hiking shoes (waterproof)
- Warm sleeping bag
- Softshell jacket
- Thick fleece cardigan / sweater
- Warm hat
- Scarf or windstopper
- Warm gloves waterproof
- Thermo underwear (shirt and leggings)
- 3 t-shirts
- Hiking pants waterproof (preferably detachable)
- Sweatpants or something nice to sit in for the evening
- Underwear (2 sports bras)
- hiking socks
- Head lamp
- Medications: diarrhea inhibitors, paracetamol, altitude sickness pills, plasters and blister plasters
- Lip balm (really a must !!)
- Wet Wipes
- Water bottle (preferably a thermo bottle)
- Small Towel (quick-drying)
- Water purification tablets
- Snacks for in-between