Ghandruk in western Nepal, which serves the taste of its ethnic Gurung culture, has been among the most popular destinations for national and international tourists for decades and is considered a must-stop during the Annapurna Circuit trek. The Ghandruk village is also called Stone Village and Konda in the local language.
It is the most preferred adventure activities in Nepal is a result of Nepal’s diversified landscapes and topography. The village is a major recruitment center for the famous Gurkha soldiers and is the hub of the Annapurna Conservation Area Project, which promotes many varied ecological projects.
Ghandruk, the beautiful village known for its homestays and the view of majestic mountains, was declared one of the most picturesque towns of Asia by CNN Travel in Last year August 2019.
Ghandruk, the famous Gurung village at 2,010m (6,600ft), is located northwest of the lakeside city of Pokhara. It is accessible in one day, with a four to five-hour walk after a short ride from the city. Given that the small village is on the much-used trail to the Annapurna Sanctuary or the Annapurna Base Camp (also called ‘ABC’ by trekkers), it claims to be the most visited trekking area in Nepal and is widely known and popular among international visitors. After opening the Pokhara-Baglung highway in the mid-1990s, Ghandruk (Ghandrung on some maps) has seen a gradual increase in domestic tourists as well.
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Attractions of Ghandruk
The major attraction of Ghandruk is the unique culture of the Gurungs living in the area. It entertains the tourists with the Gurung dances and allows the tourists with the opportunity to wear traditional Gurung dresses and ornaments. The tourists are very pleased to experience the new Gurung attire and take pictures in the traditional style. The local food is also a major attraction, especially for foreign tourists. Adding on, Ghandruk also offers the tourists with horse riding experience. Tourists can also enjoy playing with snow in the upper hill of Ghandruk.
A tour of Ghandruk village eventually brings you to a privately run museum that houses a collection of traditional wares from earthenware and kitchenware to clothing, jewelry and iron weaponry and hand-tools, which allow you a rare glimpse into the age-old lifestyle and culture of this ethnic community.
Weather of Ghandruk
Weather-wise, Ghandruk boasts a pleasant climate without extremes of heat or cold, year-round. Excluding the monsoon period (July through early Sept), all months are suitable for hikes to Ghandruk, though you might encounter a temporary dusting of snow on some mid-winter days.
How to reach
You can get a public bus to Ghandruk from Baglung Buspark, Pokhara and the bus takes you to the base of Ghadruk village. The village is 45 minutes of a hike from the bus stop. If you take a private vehicle, you can drive all the way up to the Ghandruk village. If you love trekking, From Phedi, the route starts up to the steep hill. Following the trail, you will pass the Dhampus in your right and the ridges provide the fascinating views of the Annapurna and Manaslu.
You can also go to Birethati from Phedi. From Birethati, the route turns right crossing the Modi River and continuing the steep trail for about 4-5 hours to reach Ghandruk. The route will offer you with the beautiful views of the Machhapuchhare and South Annapurna.
You can find many home-stay, tea houses, and a luxurious hotel in Ghandruk. You can find one easily once you reach the village- you don’t even need to book in advance. You can find budget to a luxurious room here.