Upper Mustang Trek

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Duration 18 Days
starting at

$1775 USD

  • Holiday Type

    Adventure, Trekking
  • Best Season

    Feb to May and Aug to December
  • Max-Altitude

    4300m
  • Difficulty Level

    Moderate
  • Group Size

    2-20 persons
  • Accomodation

    Hotel, Tea House

Overview

Upper Mustang Trekking offers unique and dramatic geography for the trekkers who have only seen those familiar forested, green landscapes in the rest of Nepal. With the cultural history as captivating as the landscapes, this region has attracted the curiosity of many Himalayan adventurers and it was only in 1991 that it got opened for limited visitation. In earlier days, Mustang was a vital trading route between India and Tibet and you can still see the interesting remains of forts which served as tax collection outposts then. In the late 1950s, this area was a center for the guerrilla, who were armed and trained by the US C.I.A. to oppose the Chinese Army’s occupation of Tibet.

Upper Mustang Trek consists of two distinct regions: the south region with five villages inhabited by people related to the Managis; and the northern region (the ancient kingdom of Lo), where the language, culture, and traditions are almost purely Tibetan, the capital of Lo is named Manthang, which translates from the Tibetan as lain of aspiration many texts refer to the capital as Lo Manthang, but this is not strictly correct, Other texts spell the name of the kingdom as Lho, but this is a transliteration of the Tibetan word for out and is also incorrect. Thus the portion of the Upper Mustang district north of Samar is Lo and its capital is Mustang the king of Lo is the Lo Gyelbu, though I use the Nepali term Raja here. To avoid total confusion with existing Maps and texts, I also refer to the capital of Lo as Lo Manthang.

Mustang Trekking is a perfect destination for visiting oldest Buddhists monasteries and many historical caves and Himalayas beauty. This semi-autonomous and heavily Tibetan influenced region was described by Tilman as fascinatingly ugly country, the more fascinating for being so little known indeed, the trek to Lo-manthang is through an almost tree-less barren landscape, a steep rocky trail up and down hill, panoramic view of Nilgiri, Annapurna, Dhaulagiri, and several others peaks make your trek memorable. Upper Mustang is also known as” The last forbidden kingdom of Nepal”. The landscape is extremely beautiful. The lifestyle of this area is still wild. Upper Mustang Trek becomes the best attraction these days for the trekkers around the world. Tsarang Monastery, Lo-mangthang, Chooser Cave, Chungsi cave and Ghar Gompa is the major attraction of this trek.

Besides this Mustang region is also famous for the Tiji festival. Where thousand men, women and children participate in the annual elaborate re-enactment of the Tiji myth, telling of a deity named Dorje Jon who battles his demon father to save the kingdom from destruction. It will be a unique privilege to witness the same color, costume, dancing, and ritual that were displayed by these people in this place more than six hundred years ago.

Trip Highlights

  • Challenging trek along “off the beaten trail”
  • Stunning trek in the isolated Trans-Himalayan Mountain region
  • Tibetan influence culture, traditions, and hospitality
  • Many high passes, peaks, glaciers, and alpine valleys
  • Explore Nepal’s oldest Buddhist Monasteries, ancient and isolated villages with quaint whitewashed houses.

Itineraries

Upon your arrival in the Kathmandu airport  you will be greeted by The Nepal Tour representative. After completing your custom formalities (Visa, etc) pick up your luggage and look for our representative display board at the arrival gate. You will be then transferred to Hotel. After check in, you can either take a rest, hang around in the city, visit our office, it all depends upon your interests and condition.


Today after breakfast we start a guide tour to several of the most historical and spiritual attractions in Kathmandu. Some of these landmarks include the World Heritage Sites: the historic Durbar Square, the sacred Hindu temple of Pashupati Nath, the famous ‘Monkey Temple’ (Swayambhunath) and Buddhists shrine (Buddha Nath) which is one of the largest Stupas in the world. In the afternoon, there will be a pre-trip discussion where we can meet our trek leader and other team member, briefs you regarding your trek as well as provides you opportunity to ask any questions we may have regarding our upcoming trekking.


Early morning after breakfast, we set off for Pokhara on a tourist bus. Enroute we will see more of countryside of Nepal that offers greeneries, rivers, villages, farms and beautiful mountain sceneries. Pokhara offers magnificent views of Dhaulagiri, Manaslu, Machhapuchhare, five peaks of Annapurna and others. Pokhara is city of lakes and has numerous beautiful lakes. We can explore the most accessible and beautiful, Fewa Lake during the afternoon -enjoy boating too. Explore, relax and dine by tranquil Lake Fewa. You can even do some shopping during evening hours.


Early morning transfer to the airport for a morning flight to Jomsom, a super scenic flight of 20 minutes over the mountains with views of 8,000ers such as Annapurna & Dhaulagiri.This is a large town, headquarter of the Mustang region; it is also a major village on the Kaligandaki area linking the age old Trans-Himalayan Salt Trade route to Tibet. From Jomsom onwards it is very windy in the afternoon, Continue on the gradual path on the Kali Gandaki river bed for about 3 hrs and finally reaching at Ekley-bhatti village. After good stop here an hour of easy walk takes us to Kagbeni, which lies at the bank of two rivers. Kagbeni is an interesting windswept villages situated on the main age old Trans-himalayan salt trade route to Tibet via Upper Mustang area.


The Upper Mustang Trekking starts from Kagbeni. Kagbeni is special permit check up point and after check we go to old Buddhist monastery in kagbeni. During the walk we have scenic picturesque place to stop through the sandy and windy trails. This trails follows the up and downhill. Firstly we reach Tangbe village with narrow alleys among st white washed houses, fields of buckwheat, barley, wheat and apple orchards. From there we trek forward to Chhusang.


Today is longer day and after crossing the river head up to the huge red chunk of conglomerate that has fallen from the cliff above, forming a tunnel through which the Kaligandaki follows. We head on to small ridges reach at Chele village.We climb to Taklam La Pass (3,624m/11,923 ft) through plateaus and narrow stretches with views of Tilicho Peak, Yakawa Kang and Damodar Danda. Further descend a little to the village of Samar. Climb the trail that goes above Samar village to the ridge then descending steeply to a stream. Another 3 hrs similar walk takes us to Syanbochen. On the way, we relax along the surrounding of cool streams and juniper trees. Locals use the dried leaves of junipers as incenses to invite deities and start any auspicious work. We also pass by a cave famously known as Chunxi Cave.


After breakfast we trek uphill to the Yamda La (3,850m /12,667ft) passing a few teahouses, chortens and local villages which is like Tibetan style of houses with open Varanda. We cross mountain passes, and an avenue of poplar trees and fields of Barley. The climb to Nyi Pass (4,010m/13,193ft) would be a little longer. Descend to our overnight stop at Ghaymi. the third largest village in the Lo region, Ghayami is surrounded by large fields most of which are barren.


Start the trek after breakfast with a pleasant walk. After crossing Ghaymi Khola, the trail climbs to a plateau and passes beside a very long Mani wall, a sacred stone wall made by the Buddhist follower. From the end of the wall the trail heads east to the village of Charang with a maze of fields, willow trees and houses separated by stone walls at the top of the Tsarang Chu canyon. There is also a huge white dzong and red Gompa to get to our teahouse for tonight’s stop.


Today, we trek to Lo-Mangthang with a magnificent view of Nilgiri, Tilicho, Annapurna I and Bhrikuti peak. The trail first descends to Charang Chu Canyon and then climbs steeply after crossing the river. Further the trail ascends gently to the 3,850m windy pass of Lo, from where you can see the Lo-Mangthang Valley. While descending to Lo-Mangthang, views of the walled city appear magnificent with its hills on the Tibetan Border. We stay at hotel for the overnight stop.


Visit Namgyal Gompa and Tingkhar. Namgyal Gompa situated on a hilltop serves as an important monastery of the local community and also as a local court. After visiting Namgyal Gompa continue the tour to Tingkhar, the last main village to the northwest of Lo-Mangthang and stroll back to hotel. Or you may have another option to visit the Tall Champa Lakhang “God house” the red Thugchen Gompa, Chyodi Gompa and the Entrance Hall which are the main attraction of this town. Another attraction is the four-storey building of the Raja’s palace as well as the surrounding panoramic views of the Himalaya.


After breakfast we start our trek to Drakmar. While returning from Lo-Mangthan, we take a different route than that we came by. This is also best trekking day because today we pass Morang la pass and trek to Drakmar via Gyakar with more than 1200 years old Ghar Gompa with Guru Rinpoche as the primary figure. The Gompa is also famous for its rock paintings. According to the legend, anyone who makes one wish at the Ghar Gompa, their wish is fulfilled. Explore the local area. Likelihood of dusty wind, so suggested to walk in the morning.


Today, we get back to Ghiling as our journey for our overnight stay after a long walk of 5-6 hrs. After arrival and lunch enjoy the day exploring the area, but it will be dusty wind in the afternoon, better to walk in evening time.


We re-track back to Chhuksang for the overnight stop after 6 houses walk. You will have wonderful scenery during the journey with a Himalayan view. Enjoy your trip and overnight at tea house.


Our last day of the day would be a long one. Better to walk early start as before and trek to Kagbeni. Finishing the upper Mustang trails and we join the normal Annapurna circuit trek. After lunch at Kagbeni will head on to Jomsom for the overnight stop. Or, if you can spare one more day, our guide would take you to Muktinath as well.


After morning breakfast we check in the airport to fly back to Pokhara. A 30 min dramatic flight to Pokhara between gorge of the two huge mountains Annapurna and Dhaulagiri. On arrival at Pokhara airport guide will transfer to hotel. Rest of the time explores the lake and overnight at hotel.


It takes 25-minute flight or 6 hours bus tour to make it to Kathmandu.  In the evening we will organize a Welcome Dinner at an excellent traditional Nepalese Restaurant where you will enjoy a Nepalese cultural program as well as a fine meal.


It’s the day to say goodbye. Our representative will assist you in last moment preparation and will drive you back to Airport from where you will return to your beloved ones. We hope to see you again.


Trip Includes

  • Best Accommodation in Kathmandu and Pokhara with breakfast
  • Teahouse accommodation during the trek
  • All meals (breakfast, lunch and dinner) during the trek
  • All ground transportation on a comfortable private vehicle as per the itinerary
  • Domestic flights (Pokhara-Jomsom-Pokhara)
  • Entrance fees for sightseeing/monument visits as per the itinerary
  • An experienced, English-speaking Guide
  • Staff costs including their salary, insurance, equipment, domestic airfare, food and accommodation
  • Upper mustang special permit
  • All necessary paperwork and trekking permits (National Park Permit, TIMS)
  • Medical kit (carried by your trek leader)
  • All government and local taxes

Trip Excludes

  • Lunch and Dinner whilst in Kathmandu & Pokhara.
  • Nepal Visa fee (bring accurate USD cash and two passport photographs)
  • International airfare to and from Kathmandu
  • All kind drinks (Alcoholic, hot and cold drinks).
  • Personal Equipment.
  • All sightseeing fees in Kathmandu & Pokhara.
  • Personal travel and medical insurance.
  • Any kind of personal expense.
  • Any others expenses which are not mentioned on Price Includes section.
  • Tips for trekking staff, driver (Tipping is expected).

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