Unspoilt and untamed, the Hampta Circuit Trek follows a lesser-known route in Himachal Pradesh. Often confused with the difficult Hampta Pass Trek, the circuit trek is beginner- and family-friendly. It skips the climb to the 4270m-high Hampta Pass, but still offers breathtaking views of the Dhauladhar, Pir Panjal and Bara Banghal ranges.
Where is it
The Hampta Circuit Trek starts at Jagatsukh, which is across the Beas River, around 7km southwest of Manali. So to get here, take a bus to Manali and then a taxi or local transport to Jagatsukh. You can stay the night here at the few small hotels in the area or in Shuru Village, which is 2km away.
This is an easy to moderate level trek. Most stretches are uncomplicated to navigate, but if you go in May, you might encounter some snow, which you will have to tread through carefully. The highest altitude you will tread to is 3200 metre, on the third day.
Planning the trek
This is not a popular trek, so you'll have to ask around in Manali for organisers. Make sure they don't misunderstand and take you on the Hampta Pass trek instead. Three companies that offer packages for the trek are Ongoz Escapades, TREXplore and Indian Himalayan Excursion.
If you have trekked before, and would like to do the Hampta Circuit Trek on your own, without a guide, you can rent tents, shoes and other equipment in the main Manali market.
You can embark on this trek at any time from May to October. While the route remains open all round the year, it becomes more difficult due to the weather conditions and snow.
This five-day trek begins from Jagatsukh, which is located on the left bank of the Beas from Manali, and ends at Pandu Ropa. The Pandu Ropa village is a short walk away from Chikka, where the popular Hampta Pass trek starts.
This is the route for the Hampta Circuit trek: Manali – Jagatsukh – Buggi – Tilgan – Jogi Dug – Kharmandari – Chikka – Pandu Ropa
Start the trek by getting from Manali to Jagatsukh.