Upper Mustang Trekking
Upper Mustang Trekking – A Visit to Ancient Buddhist Kingdom with Great Views of Arid, Grey Canyons.
Upper Mustang trekking is unique in its nature. Upper Mustang is in rain shadow just like Tibet which makes it possible to trek even in the monsoon season. Upper Mustang trekking is comparatively recently opened for trekkers than trekking in other regions. When upper Mustang was opened for trekking, limited numbers of trekkers were allowed in the beginning. This resulted in good preservation of culture and nature of Upper Mustang.
The region was Buddhist kingdom ruled by Lo. It is located in the upper section of Kali Gandaki River. The region is mostly flat with some small hills. Its easy terrain and wide trekking trail makes upper Mustang trekking ideal for even old age people.The geological setting and the culture of upper Mustang is similar to Tibet. The countryside of Lo Manthang has vast expanses of yellow and gray rolling hills which make Mustang trekking attractive and enjoyable. In a way, upper mustang trekking offers trekkers the experience of trekking in Tibet.
Several ancient Buddhist monasteries with attractive paintings and colors scattered around Lo Manthang are one of the highlights of Mustang trekking. The history of this place goes back to 8th century. One of the great Buddhist masters, Padmasambhaba was believed to live in this area for meditation. The ancient Buddhist culture is still vibrant in this region and life has remained untouched by the modern civilization. The clusters of mud houses in Lo Manthang make this place distinct from other areas in Nepal
Upper Mustang Trekking Route Details
The trek begins with the flight to Jomsom. The trek follows the west side of Jomsom Valley with magnificent views of snow capped peaks. Kagbeni is the gateway for upper Mustang trekking as the restricted area begins from here. We pass vast pasture lands with great views of arid, grey canyons and colorful-painted mud brick houses. We get great views of Dhaulagiri, Nilgiri and the Annapurna massif from the pass at 4,000 meters. Lo Manthang, the medieval walled city full of ancient Buddhist cultural and religious heritage sites is the ultimate destination of upper Mustang trekking.
In Lo Manthang, we visit the king’s palace and explore Buddhist monasteries and caves around. We can take a horse ride to Tibetan boarder. The standard Upper Mustang trekking can be extended by visiting Yara and Dhi, the most remote villages in Upper Mustang. The villages have ancient and primitive Buddhist monasteries and the caves. The trekking trail of this section is steep and difficult.
Trekking Name: Upper Mustang Trekking
Duration: 17 days
Region: Annapurna Region
Trek Type: Moderately Easy
Best Season: April , May, June, July, August, September, OctoberEnquire This Trip
Day 01: Arrival in Kathmandu
Arrival at the airport and transfer to hotel.
Day 02: Cultural Tour and Trek Preparation (including trekking permit).
Cultural tour of Swayambhunath, the Buddhist stupa, the most profound expression of Buddhist symbolism in Nepal towering on the top of a hill commanding sweeping view of Kathmandu valley and Kathmandu Durbar Square clustered with old royal palaces and distinctive pagoda roofed temples, stone sculpture and old monuments.
Day 03: Kathmandu – Pokhara Drive (823m.): 6 – 7 hrs.
Drive from Kathmandu to Pokhara in the morning enjoying the scenic beauty along the bank of Trisuli and Marshyangdi River, mountain sceneries and typical Nepalese villages.
Day 04: Pokhara – Jomsom flight – Kagbeni (2810m. ): 4 – 5 hrs.
Fly to Jomsom in the morning with magnificent views of Annapurnas and Dhaulagiri. Commence trekking following the bed of Kaligandaki River to Kagbeni, the confluence of Thak Khola and Mustang Khola.
Day 05: Kagbeni – Chhuksang (2920m.); 5 – 6 hrs.
Restricted trekking area begins and the trail climbs over many ridges and Nilgiri (7.061m) looms at the foot of the valley and arrives at Chhuksang (2,920m), a Gurung village with the views of some spectacular red, eroded, ‘organ-pipe’ cliffs on the otherside.
Day 06: Chhuksang – Syangbochen ( 3475m. ); 6 – 7 hrs.
Climb steeply up a rocky gully to Chele (3030m) and starts Tibetan culture of Lo. Further climbing up to a cairn at 3080m offers a view of Ghyakar across s huge canyon and the descend to valley.
Day 07: Syanhgbochen – Gemi ( 3520m. ): 5 – 6 hrs.
Ascending to the ridge and then a pass, southern boundary of Lo Manthang. And then gentle descend through blue, grey and red cliffs.
Day 08: Gemi – Charang ( 3490m. ); 4 – 5 hrs.
Pass through spectacular stretch of mani wall to Charang (3,490m) which houses five storey white dzong (Tibetan style fortress) and ared gompa with statues and Thanka paintings.
Day 09: Charang – Lo Manthang ( 3780m. ); 5 – 6 hrs.
Gradual descend and then steep climbing to a ridge and further climbing through desert like landscape to ridge with view of Lo Mantang.
Day 10: Lo Manthang Exploration
Exploration of four main temples in Lo Manthang and a visit to the king.
Day 11: Lo Manthang – Drakmar ( 3810 m. ); 6 – 7 hrs.
Different route on the return via Logekhar with visit to a old Ghar Gompa.
Day 12: Drakmar – Geling ( 3806m. ); 6 – 7 hrs.
Passing through valleys and climbing to several ridges with great views of Himalayas above Lo Manthang.
Day 13: Geling – Chuksang ( 3050m. ); 6 – 7 hrs.
Gradual descend passing valleys, a stream and a cave and then to a ridge with magnificent views of Annapurnas and other Himalayas.
Day 14: Chuksang – Jomsom ( 2700m. ) ; 7 – 8 hrs.
Follow the Kali Gandaki River downstream to Jomsom.
Day 15: Jomsom – Pokhara Flight
Fly to Pokhara in the morning. Overnight Pokhara.
Day 16: Pokhara – Kathmandu
By flight / land transportation to Kathmandu.
Day 17: Airport Transfer
Transfer to the airport for deaprture.
Cost will be provided on request.
The cost includes:
- International and domestic airport arrivals and departures
- Accommodation at hotel in Kathmandu on BB plan ( as per the choice of the trekkers )
- Domestic flight fare as per the itinerary including airport tax
- All necessary paperwork for permit ( special trekking permit, national park entrance, TIMS card )
- Accommodation at the hotels / lodges in the trekking trail
- All meals ( breakfast, lunch and dinner ) in the trekking
- An experienced English speaking trek leader ( trekking guide ) and assistant trekking guide ( 4 trekking members ),
- Porters ( one porter between two trekkers ) to carry luggage including their meals, accommodation, wages, equipment and accident insurance.
- First aid medical kit
- All government and local taxes
- Farewell dinner
The cost does not include:
- International airfare to and from Kathmandu
- Nepal visa fee
- Excess baggage charges for the domestic flight
- Lunch and dinner in Kathmandu
- Travel and rescue insurance for trekking members
- Any additional expenses due to domestic flight delay or cancellation
- Any other expenses of personal nature ( phone calls, laundry, bar bills, hot shower and boiled water in the trekking ).
- Gratuity for the trekking staffs