Pur. Ngawal village against Mt. Chulu (far east). Marshyangdi river valley, Annapurna circuit trek, Nepal.

Nepal trekking permits and fees (2024)

Jun 7, 2024
Reading time: 11 minutes

Let us demystify Nepal's trekking permits situation for you. We explain the different permits and fees involved, and then state which permits are needed for each of Nepal's most famous trek routes. We also let you know how much each one costs.

Types of trekking permits and fees

Please note that this blog post gives details on the permits and fees necessary for high-altitude trekking, not mountaineering. If you're going to be summiting mountain peaks, your permits and fees will be different.

Everyone who goes high-altitude trekking in Nepal needs to purchase certain permits to be allowed entrance to the trek routes. These are:

  • An entry permit into the relevant national park or conservation area
  • A Trekking Information Management System (TIMS) card
  • A restricted-area trekking permit

You don't need all of the above for a given trek, and further on we state exactly which are needed for each of Nepal's most popular high-altitude treks.

Note that on a few treks, like the Everest Base Camp trek, you must also purchase one or more:

  • Municipality trekking permits

If you trek with Follow Alice, we take care of trekking permits and fees for you.

 

Tour operators purchase permits for you

A tour operator like Follow Alice is very useful when trekking in Nepal, as we organise and pay for all of these things on your behalf. These fees are included in your trekking package fee.

But whether trekking on your own or with a tour operator, it's useful to know what each of these fees are about, and how much they actually touch your wallet (it's not a lot), so please read on ...

Sonam Profile 2

Sonam, our local leader in Nepal, purchases all permits for our trekkers

1. TIMS cards

Many of Nepal's trek routes – including the Annapurna Circuit and Everest Base Camp treks – require you to obtain a Trekking Information Management System (TIMS) card. Or they do at least in theory – post Covid-19 the park officials no longer actually check for this.

TIMS is administered by the Trekking Agencies' Association of Nepal. It gathers trekkers' information with the aim of regulating the trekking industry as well as securing trekkers' safety.

Here's what you can expect to pay for a TIMS card based on whether or not you live in a country that's part of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) ...

Trekker Cost per person

Non-SAARC trekker

NPR 2,000 / US$17

SAARC trekker

NPR 1,000 / US$7.50

 

Where to purchase your TIMS card

The best place to get your TIMS card (if you don't have a tour operator doing it for you) is the Tourist Service Centre in Kathmandu. The office is a 15-minute walk from Thamel, and can be found on Pradarshani Marg (Street).

If you're organising your own trek, we recommend heading to the Tourist Service Centre as you should be able to purchase not only your TIMS card but also all other necessary trekking permits.

Office hours are officially 10 am to 5 pm, with a lunch closure usually between 1 pm and 2 pm.

kathmandu-aerial-view

Your TIMS card and most other permits can be obtained in Kathmandu upon arrival

What you need to apply for a TIMS card

Your card contains information like your country of residence, your trek route, your trek company, and a local emergency contact number.

So with this in mind, please note that you cannot apply for a TIMS card until you have the following:

  • your entry and exit dates for Nepal
  • your trek's entry and exit points
  • a detailed trek itinerary
  • a local emergency contact number (can be your tour operator)
  • a home-country emergency contact number
  • your insurance policy number (you can't trek without traveller's insurance)

You'll also need to supply the following:

  • a copy of your passport
  • two passport-style photos

As with all trekking permits, carry it on you so you can present it when requested at checkpoints.

2. Restricted-area trekking permits

You usually don't need a TIMS card if you're trekking in a restricted area like the Lower Dolpo or Nar–Phu region. Instead, you need to purchase a restricted-area trekking permit.

Some restricted areas charge a daily fee, others a weekly fee, and still others a combination of the two. Upper Mustang, for instance, requires $500 for the first 10 days, after which you're charged $50 for every subsequent day. (We list the permit fees per restricted area further on in this post.)

Restricted-area trekking permits are needed when you plan to walk in one of the following regions:

  • Humla
  • Kanchenjunga
  • Manaslu
  • Nar–Phu Valleys
  • Tsum Valley
  • Lower Dolpo
  • Upper Dolpo
  • Upper Mustang
Pur. Scenery from Nar Phu Trek in Manang, Nepal.

The Nar and Phu Valleys require a restricted-area permit

Where to purchase a restricted-area permit

Your tour operator will obtain any restricted-area permits for you. You can't trek in a restricted area on your own.

This means that if you're a solo traveller wanting to visit a restricted area, you'll need to find a tour operator to put you with at least one other trekker wishing to hike the same route. That's something we at Follow Alice love doing – putting travel-loving strangers together on epic treks, and hearing about the awesome bonds that developed over the course of the adventure!

 

 

3. National park permits

Every high-altitude trek in Nepal takes place within a national park or a conservation area. The Annapurna Circuit, for instance, takes place within the Annapurna Conservation Area (ACA). And the Everest Base Camp trek takes place almost entirely within Sagarmatha National Park.

All of Nepal's national parks have a once-off entrance fee of just NPR 3,000 (around $22.50). That's pretty gosh-darn amazing when you think of other national park fees around the world!

The fee is also the same for every national park: NPR 3,000 (or around $25). You also pay the fee just once, regardless of how long you stay in the park. And no profile photos are required. All very easy and inexpensive.

EBC trek Nepal suspension bridge

It's incredibly affordable to trek in Nepal compared to many other countries

Where to purchase your entry permit

In terms of national parks, an entry permit is easy obtain. You can purchase it:

  • at the park's entrance gate
  • online from the national parks office
  • at the Tourist Service Centre in Kathmandu

When paying the fee in advance, you're issued your permit on the spot, so there's no to-ing and fro-ing involved. How civilised.

What you need to purchase an entry permit

To be allowed to enter a national park, you'll need to provide the following:

  • a detailed trek itinerary
  • entry and exit dates for the park
  • the name and address of your tour operator (if you have one)
  • the name and contact details of your trek guide (if you have one)

4. Conservation area permits

Similarly to national parks, you simply need to pay a once-off fee to obtain an entry permit for a conservation area. This fee is a super modest NRP 3,000 (or around $25). And again, your permit is issued on the spot.

The most famous – and largest – conservation area in Nepal is the Annapurna Conservation Area (as you can see in the map below).

Map of Nepal protected parks and conservation areas infographic

Map of Nepal's national parks and conservation areas

You do, however, need to provide two passport-style photos of yourself to obtain the permit.

Where to purchase your entry permit

You can obtain a conservation area entry permit at:

  • The Tourist Service Centre in Kathmandu
  • The Department of National Parks and Wildlife Conservation in Kathmandu
  • The Annapurna Conservation Area Project (ACAP) office in Pokhara
  • The Nepal Tourism Board office in Besisahar or Pokhara

While you can pay the fee at a checkpoint, you'll be charged double the usual amount. So it's better to organise it in advance at one of the above-mentioned offices.

Pur. Buddha statues Tilicho lake, Annapurna, Nepal

The Annapurna mountains are part of the Annapurna Conservation Area

What you need to purchase an entry permit

To be allowed to enter a conservation area, you'll need to provide the following:

  • a detailed trek itinerary
  • entry and exit dates for the conservation area
  • the name and address of your tour operator (if you have one)
  • the name and contact details of your trek guide (if you have one)
  • two passport-style photos

5. Rural municipality trekking permits

Some municipalities charge trekkers an additional fee. Notably, those trekking to Everest Base Camp must purchase the Khumbu Rural Municipality Permit. At NRP 2,000 (or $17), this isn't a headache at all.

Namche Bazaar in Khumbu, Nepal

Aerial view of Namche Bazaar, an acclimatisation stopover point on the EBC trek

Where to pay municipality fees

Municipality trekking permits are obtained at the checkpoint to each municipality. So no forward planning is needed for these. Though again, if you're trekking with a tour operator, any municipality trekking fees will be obtained on your behalf.

List of permits and fees for specific treks

Let's now look at each of Nepal's most popular treks and what permits and fees are required for each to help you plan and budget. We've placed them in alphabetical order to help you scroll and find the ones that interest you.

* Please note that Nepali and SAARC citizens pay lower rates than those stated below.

Poon Hill, Annapurna, trekking in Nepal

Sunrise over Poonhill

Annapurna Conservation Area treks

Here's what you'll pay for permits and fees to do any one of the following Annapurna Conservation Area treks:

  • Annapurna Base Camp
  • Annapurna Circuit
  • Annapurna Sanctuary
  • Poonhill
  • Mardi Himal
Permit Cost per person

TIMS card

US$17

Annapurna Conservation Area permit

US$25

Total cost:

US$42

 

nepal-Annapurna-prayer-flags

The Annapurna Circuit is one of the Nepal treks we offer at Follow Alice

And here's what you'll pay for the Nar–Phu and Annapurna Circuit trek:

Permit Cost per person

Annapurna Conservation Area permit

US$25

Nar–Phu restricted-area permit

Peak season (Sept to Nov): US$100 for the first week, then US$15 for every day thereafter

 

Off-peak season: US$75 for the first week, then US$15 for every day thereafter

Total cost:

Varies

 

Pur. Kang La pass, Nar-Phu valley, Annapurna, Nepal

The Nar–Phu and Annapurna Circuit is our newest Nepal trekking adventure

Finally, here's what you'll pay for the Upper Mustang trek:

Permit Cost per person

Annapurna Conservation Area permit

US$25

Upper Mustang restricted-area permit

US$500 per day for the first 10 days, then US$50 per day for ay days thereafter

 

Upper Mustang. Nepal trekking

The Upper Mustang trek takes you into an incredibly remote and culturally rich area

Everest Base Camp treks

Here's what you'll pay for permits and fees for any of the following Everest Base Camp treks:

  • Classic EBC trek
  • EBC trek and helicopter return
  • EBC and Gokyo Lakes trek
  • EB and Three Passes trek
PermitCost per person

TIMS card

US$17

Sagarmatha National Park Permit

US$28

Khumbu Rural Municipality Permit

US$17

Total cost:

US$63

 

Marco on Kongma La

Our tech whiz Marco with friends on the EBC and Three Passes trek

Treks in Langtang National Park

Here's what you'll pay for permits and fees for the following treks inside Langtang National Park:

  • Ganga La trek
  • Gosainkund trek
  • Helambu Circuit trek
  • Langtang Valley trek
Permit Cost per person

TIMS card

US$17

Langtang National Park permit

US$25

Total cost:

US$42

Helambu-trek-Nepal.jpg

The scenery on the Helambu trek is very, very pretty

Kanchenjunga Base Camp trek

Here's what you'll pay for the Kanchenjunga Base Camp trek:

Permit or feeCost per person

TIMS card

US$17

Kanchenjunga Conservation Area Permit

US$25

Restricted-area permit

US$20 per week (for the first four weeks), then US$25 per week thereafter

Total cost:

Varies

 

Treks in Shey Phoksundo National Park

Here's what you'll pay to do the Kagmara La trek:

Permit Cost per person

TIMS card

US$17

Shey Phoksundo National Park permit

US$28

Total cost:

US$45

 

And here's what you'll pay for permits and fees to do any of these other treks inside Shey Phoksundo National Park:

  • Lower Dolpo
  • Phoksundo Lake
  • Phoksundo Lake via Do Tarap
  • Phoksundo Lake to Shey Gompa
Permit Cost per person

Shey Phoksundo National Park permit

US$28

Lower Dolpo restricted-area permit

US$20 per week for first four weeks, then US$5 for every week thereafter

Total cost:

Varies

 

Finally, here's what you'll pay to do the expensive Upper Dolpo trek:

Permit Cost per person

Shey Phoksundo National Park permit

US$28

Upper Dolpo restricted-area permit

US$500 per day for the first 10 days, and US$50 for every day thereafter

Total cost:

Varies

 

Makalu Base Camp trek

To do the Makalu Base Camp trek, you should budget:

Permit Cost per person

Makalu Barun National Park permit

US$25

Makalu Rural Municipality Permit

US$17

Total cost:

US$42

 

Manaslu Conservation Area treks

Here's what you'll pay to do the Manaslu Circuit trek:

Permit Cost per person

Manaslu Conservation Area permit

US$25

Manaslu restricted-area permit

In peak season (Sept to Nov), US$100 for the first week, then $15 for every day thereafter

 

All other months, US$75 for the first week, then US$10 for every day thereafter

Total cost:

Varies

 

And here's what you'll pay to do the Tsum Valley trek:

Permit Cost per person

Manaslu Conservation Area permit

US$25

Manaslu restricted-area permit

In peak season (Sept to Nov) US$40 for the first week, then US$7 for every day thereafter

 

All other months, US$30 for the first week, then US$7 for every day thereafter

Total cost:

Varies

 

Mt Manaslu Nepal

Sunrise over Mt Manaslu, the eighth-highest mountain in the world

You can look at Nepal's Department of Immigration website to check for any updates or further info with regards to trekking permits and fees.