Is the Manaslu Circuit Trek Harder than the Everest Base Camp Trek?

Is Manaslu Trek Harder Than Everest

22 Nov 2023 Chandra Gurung

Unveiling the challenges and rewards of both Manaslu Circuit Trek and Everest Base Camp Trek

With several white, snow-capped mountains along with hundreds of trekking trails, Nepal is a country full of diverse geographical folds along with rich cultural and natural resources. From a beginner to a trekking expert, Nepal has something to offer for everyone whether you are trying to escape the busy city life or you are hailing a journey of self-discovery and transformation.

Everest and Manaslu, both are prominent trekking routes in Nepal. Everest and Manaslu are part of the MahaLangur Himalayan Range which includes the other two highest peaks in the world Mt. Lhotse and Mt. Cho Oyu. These treks will take you to some of the highest peaks in the world. However, these treks differ in various ways. The blog below talks compactly about the comparison of the Manaslu Circuit Trek Vs Everest Base Camp.

Everest Base Camp Trek and Manaslu Circuit Trek

Mount Everest, also known as Sagarmatha, is the highest peak in the world. It lies on the border between Nepal and China (Tibet). The height of Mount Everest is 8849 meters which is about 29,029 feet above sea level. Everest is in the Mahalangur range of Khumbu region. Mount Everest has been drawing mountaineers and trekkers around the world. This white pearl-like beauty has a unique geology, climate, and biodiversity.

Manaslu is the eighth-highest mountain in the world which has a height of 8,163 meters. This is around 26,781 feet above sea level. Mount Manaslu resides in the Gorkha district of Nepal and is in the Mansiri Himal Range in Northern central Nepal. The Manaslu Conservation Area around the mountain encompasses a variety of flora and fauna. Marsyandgdi River separates the Mansiri Himal Range from the Annapurna Region.

Comparison between the Everest Base Camp Trek and the Manaslu Circuit Trek

Although both of the treks lead to one of the major destinations including the Everest Base Camp and circle around Manaslu mountain, there is a difference in various terms. These two of the most popular trekking destinations in Nepal offer views of stunning mountain vistas and an opportunity to immerse oneself in the rich Himalayan culture. Here are some of the major comparisons between the Everest Base Camp Trek and the Manaslu Circuit Trek.

Trekking Routes- Is it easy to get to Manaslu Circuit or Everest Base Camp?

Manaslu Circuit Trek 177 kilometers 
Everest Base Camp Trek130 kilometers

Both the Everest Base Camp Trek and the Manaslu Circuit Trek are challenging. However, there is a certain variation in the length of the trek. In terms of duration and trekking routes, both of these treks are quite difficult yet rewarding.

Altitude and Acclimatization

Manaslu Circuit Trek Everest Base Camp Trek 
5,106 meters (16,752 feet)5,644 meters (18,519 feet)
Higher risk of sickness Lower risk of altitude sickness 
14 to 16 days 18 to 21 days 

The Everest Base Camp Trek usually takes fewer days to complete, whereas, the Manaslu Circuit Trek is a comparatively longer trek. However, you can stretch the trek as per your routines. Taking time to adjust to the altitude and proper acclimatization is important and will help you to prevent altitude sickness. 

Technical difficulty and Trial condition

Manaslu Circuit Trek Everest Base Camp Trek 
Medium technical difficulties High technical difficulties 
Less crowded More crowded and exposed sections
Fewer steep ascents and descents High steep ascents and descents 
Warmer and wetterColder and drier 

The highest point of Manaslu Circuit Trek is the Larkya La pass whereas the highest point of Everest Base Camp Trek is Kala Patthar. The Manaslu Circuit Trek is a less technical trek than that of the EBC Trek. Manaslu Circuit trek further offers a more varied scenery.

Physical fitness and Endurance requirement

Manaslu Circuit Trek Everest Base Camp Trek
Moderate physical fitness Good physical fitness 
Medium endurance requirements High endurance 
5 to 7 hours trek per day8 to 10 hours trek per day 

Everest Base Camp Trek will seek high perseverance as you will be trekking through steep inclines and declines. Also, you will be hiking for 8 to 10 hours with a full backpack at a steady pace. On the other hand, Manaslu Circuit Trek is 5 to 7 hours of trek per day which requires a moderate physical condition.

Permits and costs

Manaslu Circuit Trek Everest Base Camp Trek
TIMS card required TIMS card required 
Permit for Manaslu Conservation AreaPermit for Sagarmatha National Park
Restricted area permit required Restricted area permits are mandatory
Average of USD 1100 to 2500 USD per person  Average of USD 1200 to 2000 USD per person 

The difference in the cost stems from the higher permit fees and transportation expenses. However, you can cut some of the prices by altering the medium of transportation along with the accommodation facilities as well.  Also, the popularity of Everest Base Camp and Sagarmatha National Park is another prime reason for the higher cost. The unique characters and locations of Manaslu Trek make it less pricey than that of Everest Base Camp Trek. Both treks may require local municipal trekking permits which you should consider before the trek. 

Which to choose- Manaslu Circuit Trek or Everest Base Camp Trek ?

Well, choosing between the Everest Base Camp Trek and the Manaslu Circuit Trek solely depends upon individual preferences, budgets, and other factors. However, here we will help you narrow down the difficulties for you to navigate through your decision to trek in Nepal between Manaslu and Everest. 

Comparatively, Manaslu Trekking is less crowded than Everest Base Camp Trek, even during the rush and peak hours. Therefore, if you are seeking solitude from the external world and escape from the interactions then Manaslu Trek is just the thing for you. This shall be a trek with isolation and a journey of self-discovery. However, solo trekking is not permissible in this region. So, you should have at least a trekking guide accompanied by other trekker companions. 

Every individual is unique. Therefore, your adaptation to the climate, weather, and altitude will also play a major role during the trek. The Everest Base Camp has extreme weather conditions during the winter while the Manaslu is challenging in Monsoon. The ascending and inclination of the Everest base camp is much more rapid than the Manaslu trek. Eventually, you can decide which trek to choose as per your personal preferences, budget, physical condition, and strengths. 


The selection between Manaslu Circuit Trek and Everest Base Camp Trek exclusively depends on you and your choices. However, both these treks are unforgettable journeys to the serene and majestic Himalayas. Manaslu Circuit Trek presents some more challenges than the Everest Base Camp Trek. However, Manaslu has a more sheltered and immersive adventure making it a unique experience. No matter whatever Trek you choose, with proper research and plan, you will have an adventurous journey to the majestic Himalayas. No matter where you go, you will be able to explore the stunning and exquisite mountains along with the breathtaking landscapes, flora and fauna, diverse biodiversity, natural beauty, and rich culture.