Upper Mustang is located north of Annapurna and at an average altitude of 4,000m is geologically and culturally part of the Tibetan plateau. The valleys are arid and dry with colourful rock formations containing many cave dwellings high up in the cliffs. The first trekking parties were allowed into Upper Mustang in 1992 and there are still very few people (about 800 trekkers each year) visiting Upper Mustang as a result it is one of the few places left where one can see undisturbed Tibetan culture. The Upper Mustang Trek allows you to experience the true life of the real mountain people in Nepal.
In many ways, trekking into the Upper Mustang Area is similar to trekking into Tibet, which geographically it is a part of. Mustang, a land where the soul of man is still considered to be as real as the feet he walks on, while the land itself is almost treeless, barren landscape with a countryside similar to Tibetan plateau, but where beauty and happiness flourishes, in spite of hardship. This was part of the Tibetan Kingdom of Gungthang until 1830’s. The fabled medieval wall city of Lo Monthang, an official capital of Mustang still remains a kingdom within a kingdom its full of culture and religious heritage.
The early history to Lo Monthang is embellished in myth and legend rather than the recorded fact. The Upper Mustang trek is a special journey and has special requirements for Mustang trekking participants. The trekker to the region is supposed to agree to follow certain guidelines to ensure that the unique sights, culture and beauty of the land be preserved and respected. Also it requires a special trekking permit from the government of Nepal to visit this special preserved land as well as Upper Dolpo trek, Nar Phu Valley trek and Kanchenjunga trek . Counting starts from Kagbeni once you enter restricted Area. For any extra days in restricted area you are subjected to extra charge for extra days.
Upon your arrival in the Kathmandu airport after completing your custom formalities Visa,etc. pick up your luggage and look for our airport representative from Himalaya Discovery who will display your name on the board at the arrival gate. You will be greeted by our representative and transferred to your hotel by private tourist vehicle. Overnight in Kathmandu.
Today is free for sightseeing in Kathmandu. You may wish to visit Durbar Square in the heart of the old city where the old Royal Palace, with its intricate woodcarving is located. The whole area is a maze of temples and images. Leading away from the square in all directions are narrow alleys, full of the most amazing variety of shops and stalls. Some of these landmarks are considered World Heritage Sites including the historic Bhaktapur Durbar Square, the famous ‘Monkey Temple’ Swayambhunath and Buddhists shrine Buddhanath which is one of the largest Stupas in the world.
There will also be a full trip briefing today with gear check. In case you need to hire or buy equipment locally there will be time to do this today. Overnight in Kathmandu.
Your guide will pick you up at 6:30 am from the hotel and take you to the tourist bus station. The bus leaves to Pokhara at about 7:30 am. Also known for its panoramic views of Annapurna and Machapuchare (Fishtail) in the north, Dhaulagiri in the west and Lamjung Himal and Manaslu in the south, Pokhara is a lovely valley on the banks of the Fewa Lake. It’s lower than Kathmandu and much less hectic, making it the ideal starting point for your journey. Overnight at hotel in Pokhara.
Early morning, we are flying Northwest from Pokhara toward the great portal between the snow covered peaks of Annapurna and Daulagiri. You will enjoy the well-raised massifs of more than 8000 meters, and the deepest gorge on this planet.
On arrival to Jomsom you will meet the rest of the trekking staff. From Kathmandu you will have a guide with you. We start to trek towards Kagbeni, the main gate to Upper Mustang. Overnight at guesthouse.
The trail leads up towards the east bank of the Kaligandaki climbing over many ridges as it heads north and reaches Tangbe village. The town is a labyrinth of narrow alleys amongst white washed houses, fields of buckwheat, barley, wheat and apple orchards. The Nilgiri peak, dominates the southern skyline of Kagbeni, all the way by different shapes. Beyond Tangbe we reach Chhusang village in about 1/2 hr, then we trek and cross the river which continues north climbing up to a huge red chunk of conglomerate that has fallen from the cliff above, forming a tunnel that the Kaligandaki follows. The trek now leaves the Kali Gandaki valley and climbs steeply up a rocky gully to Chaile. From here the culture changes from the Manangi culture to the Tibetan culture of Lo. Overnight at guesthouse.
The climb continues along steep, treeless, waterless terrain, along the side of the spectacular steep canyon to a pass and cairn of rock. Then the trail makes a long gradual descent to some chortens on a ridge, and with a further descent before coming along a pleasant trail to Samar village. We climb above Samar to a ridge, then descend into a large gorge, which the trail goes into another valley field, crosses a stream and climbs up to a ridge at 3800 meters. The route climbs over yet another pass, follows a ridge and then descends to Shyangmochen. From there we gently climb to a pass at 3770meters and descend to Geling Village. Overnight at guesthouse.
From Geling village the trail climbs gently up to an interesting pass NYI LA and descends below the blue, gray and red cliffs. After crossing a steel bridge of the Tangmar Chu (river) you will arrive to a MANI WALL perhaps the longest and most spectacular MANI wall in Nepal. Climbing over another pass at 3600meters, the route makes a long gentle descent to Charang village. The huge five-story white Dzong and red Gompa are the main attractions to visit and observe collections of statues and Thankas as well as many large paintings, of seated Buddha’s. Overnight at guesthouse.
This is an opportunity to visit two other villages on your trek. The trail climbs steadily until Lo-Gekar. Lo-Gekar Gompa is older than Samye Gompa in Tibet and one of the oldest Gompa of Nepal. After visiting Lo-Gekar continue trek to Lomanthang. The trail until Lo-Manthang is fine with some minor climbing. Finally from the ridge there is a view of the walled city of LO. After a short descent, cross a stream then climb up into the plateau of Lo-Manthang. Overnight at guesthouse.
It takes around 2 hours to Namgyal Gompa. Namgyal Gompa situates on a hilltop, which serves as an important monastery for the local community, also serving as a local court. After visiting Namgyal Gompa continue the tour to Tingkhar, which is a village of around 40 houses, the last main village to the northwest of Lomanthang. After visiting Namgyal Gompa and Tingkhar return to Lomanthang. Overnight at guesthouse / tented camp.
From Lo-Manthang the trail walks straight till Dhi pass 4100meters and descends down to Dhi village. The trek from Lo Manthang to Muktinath is harder, but more rewarding and interesting than the west side of the valley. Dhi village is one of the best villages of whole Lo-mathang and it seems more prosperous and it is settled in a very suitable place. Overnight at guesthouse.
From Dhi the trail goes through the river for around 2 hours and crosses a river from Damodar Kunda, one of the sacred lakes, there is no bridge on the river so we need to walk across in bare feet to cross this river. After crossing the river the trail climbs up till high above a pass of 3850meters. The trail goes through a grassless, treeless bare hill. After the pass the trail again drops directly to Tangbe village at an elevation of 3370m.Tangbe is a small village of around 30 houses but most of the houses are attached to each other. On the rooftops one can see piles of dry woods, which also reflects the prosperity in their society.Overnight at guesthouse.
The trail walks through a steep ridge of hills providing some fine views of the wind carved hills. Tetang village is formed between 2 hills; they should have found it a safe place to avoid the strong wind that hits the entire Kaligandaki valley. Tetang is the upper village of the Chuksang, which we visit on the first day entering to Mustang from Kagbeni. Overnight at guesthouse.
This is the last day of the trek. The trail goes through the village of Jharkot where one can visit the many attractions such as the Jharkot monastery, Tibetan herbal medical center and the old fortress of Jharkot which once served as palace. Continuing the trek towards Jomsom one will enjoy the views of the Kaligandaki valley and Kagbeni village. This is the entry point to Mustang. We get a round trip of our trek in Ekle Bhatti visiting all the surprises of the human effort in this corner of the World of such an isolation and solitude. Arrive to Jomsom to celebrate the last day of the trek, with all the trekking staff. Overnight at guesthouse.
Today 25 minute morning flight takes us from Jomson back to Pokhara. Once we arrived at Pokhara airport, we then drive to hotel. The rest of the day will be free and relax. Take a sightseeing tour around Pokhara valley if you are interested. Overnight at hotel in Pokhara.
It’s also spare day in case of bad weather in Jomsom. Overnight at hotel in Pokhara.
We depart at approximately 7.30am for Kathmandu by tourist bus. We arrive back in Kathmandu at around 2-3.00 pm. In the evening we will have a farewell dinner in a traditional Nepalese restaurant with cultural performances. Overnight in Kathmandu.
Today you can either stay back and enjoy a free day in Kathmandu or leave for your respective countries.
The trip concludes! Our representatives will drop you off at the airport according to your flight schedule.
We hope you had an amazing time Trekking in Nepal with us and we look forward to your next trip with us in the future.