Soti Khola: Your Manaslu Trekking Adventure Starts Here—Know Everything! 

Soti Khola Nepal

19 May 2024 Chandra Gurung

The Nepal tour to Soti Khola—it’s where your 14 days of trekking in Manaslu begin. Are you excited to travel with us to where your Soti Khola destination arrives? Grab your refreshing drink and wait for a while to catch up, because the upcoming journey is a bit tiresome and will take a toll on you in the Manaslu trekking region. 

If you have a knack for exploring the most remote villages in Manaslu, which are now commercializing due to an increase in trekking, sure, you are welcome! And Soti Khola is the landmark of the beginning of the wild adventure gaze while chasing the Mansiri Himalayan range. 

Why Soti Khola? 

Soti Khola is the starting point of the Manaslu Circuit Trek, located around 145 km away from Kathmandu. The secret getaway and the attractions are all behind you when you take an exhilarating jeep or bus ride to Arughat and continue the drive to the most exciting beginning, Soti Khola. 

Let me tell you, the adventure is daring, taking you to exotic scenery following a bumpy ride from Kathmandu to Sotikhola. Some driving routes are still remote and are prone to landslides. 

The reason is very clear, it rests in natural landscapes with hills and trees, and commercialization is not properly executed in terms of infrastructure. 

But the good part is that the remoteness of Soti Khola, its traditional charm, and the endless beauty beckon of Manaslu continue to sing their way out on the pine and oak forests of the Manaslu trekking route. Start your trekking in Manaslu at the terraced field in Sotikhola with a friendly trekking guide, who can ground you to the core of the adventure itself.   

Soti Khola: The Journey to trekking routes in Manaslu starts here

Soti Khola, the starting point for the Manaslu Circuit Trek, can be reached via an 8-hour jeep ride from Kathmandu. While the road distance is only 87 miles (around 145 km) from Kathmandu, the bumpy roads can be a little challenging and serve as a fitting start to a great adventure that awaits in the Mansiri Himalayan range. 

Choose a reputed trekking company that will book all your transfers, arrange the necessary facilities, and help you have a better trekking experience on the Manaslu Circuit trek. If you are looking for an affordable option, booking online bus tickets for local buses from Kathmandu to SotiKhola with basic facilities can minimize extra expenses on your part.  

  1.  By private transfer of 6+ hours, you reach Arughat, from which the distance is just a few kilometers. 
  2. One can take locally operated jeeps or small vans from Arughat if opting for a public bus, (around 2 hours to reach). Off-road and the cheapest mode of travel, along with the silent noise of the running water current. 
  3. If you have a group, you can hire private vehicles like the Totoyo Hilux Jeep to take you to Soti Khola. 
  4. crossing of wooden suspension bridges, the local buses, and friendly locals help you know about the ideal road conditions for the trek. 

You can ride on a local bus from Kathmandu to Sotikhola for a more safe and comfortable option. By slightly moving over the budget, your destination can be planned based on your comfort with the Manaslu Guide team. We arrange your porter and top guide for you and give you an anthem of your own with a first-hand encounter with the promising landscapes of Manaslu.  

Briefly describe the drive from Kathmandu to Soti khola 

It’s exciting to be a part of the journey from Kathmandu to the entry point of the Manaslu trekking region. A drive to Soti khola starts as you follow the Prithivi Highway, a road that connects Kathmandu and Pokhara. The drive is speculated to take between 8 and 10 hours, again subject to traffic conditions. 

During festivity time, Dashain-Tihar, the traffic is real, especially, in October and November. The road starts to be well-maintained up until Dhading, and some progressively deteriorating road conditions are seen in the rural and remote part when you come close to Gorkha district. The bumpy roads give you the ancient tale of how people used to struggle for infrastructure in the Manaslu region and still do. 

But what is explored best with feet in SotiKhola and the Manaslu villages, like Jagat, Samdo, and Samagaun, is not possible with a ride. The Nubri Valley, the heart of Manaslu, is popular for its ethnic villages, Ribum monastery, and stress-buster accommodation stops for trekkers who come to chase Manaslu, Naike Peak, and Himalchuli on the left. These views make up for the lack of comfort on the driving route from Kathmandu to Soti Khola, where you approach a more remote part. 

Soti khola to Machha Khola trek distance & altitude

Whether you are on a Mustang or Manaslu adventure, you are through this essential beginning trekking point, Soti Khola. It takes about 200 meters of elevation gain and 14.1 km/8.7 miles to reach the uphills of Machha Khola, crossing the Budhi Gandaki River. 

Manaslu adventure is a ticked-off bucket list once you follow Soti Khola up to the Manaslu base camp, sightseeing the remote Narphu Valley, Samagaun, and the lesser-known Manaslu village. The blue river with its views is worth starting as you continue your journey to the eighth highest peak, Manaslu, and discover its unusual magic in the villages in the base area. 

The trek following Soti Khola passes through rough and steep mule tracks; it also includes crossing of several long metal suspension bridges, oak and rhododendron forests, ethnic villages, green hills, glaciers, and the dramatic trekking route of Manaslu, concurrently passing the high glacial saddles and the Larkya La pass (5100m).

Accommodation options in Soti Khola Nepal

The overall experience of staying in Soti Khola Nepal is good, with some pluses and minuses. Let’s list some of the accommodation options in Soti Khola which I prefer, 

  1. Satkar Guest House
  2. Tsum Valley Guest House
  3. Hotel Fulbari Lodge and Restaurants
  4. Green Valley Guest House
  5. ABC Guest House

The homestays, lodges, and hotels in SotiKhola are over a dozen, operated by locals, and even commercialized in partnership with the best trekking companies in Nepal. You are served hot soups on cold days; savor delicacies of Magar and Gurung cuisines like Tarul (yam) with spices, sekuwa, raksi, batuk roti, and Nepali thali with the fusions of western cuisines. 

Final words on Soti Khola and Manaslu Trek (Nepal)

The government of Nepal requires a special permit to visit the Manaslu trekking area, i.e., a Manaslu Restricted Area permit. There is other necessary paperwork, like a TIMS card and a Manaslu Conservation Area Permit, which the trekking guide helps you arrange. 

Contact the Manaslu guide team for ground transportation for the Manaslu Tsum Valley trek and circuit trek updates for 2024–2025. The next thing we talk more about is other famous stops at the Manaslu trekking route: Larke Bazaar, Lokpa, Nepal, Bumthang, Nyak, Chumling, Mu Gompa, Samdo, Samagaun , Lho, and Machhakhola.