Upper Mustang is one of the recently opened areas for limited trekking groups each year. It was the former Buddhist kingdom of Lo, extended to the upper Kali Gandaki River which has carved the deepest gorge in the world between Dhaulagiri and Annapurnas. Mustang has a long and rich history that makes one of the most interesting places in Nepal. There are records of events in Lo as early as 8th century.
Upper Mustang trekking follows the west side of Jomsom Valley with magnificent views of the Dhaulagiri, Nilgiri and the Annapurna massif from the pass at 4,000 meters and reaches the fabled medieval walled city of Lo Manthang full of cultural and religious heritage.
Not suffered from mass influx of tourists, the region has retained its unique and un-spoilt nature by less human impact in the area. The countryside of Lo Manthang is similar to Tibetan plateau with its endless expanses of yellow and gray rolling hills. Trekking in upper Mustang, a fabled forbidden kingdom of vast, arid valleys, eroded canyons, yak caravans, colorful-painted mud brick houses on the back dropped of majestic mountain of Nilgiri, Tukche, Annapurna and Dhaulagiri offers a unique experience for trekkers. Mustang trekking unravels a Shangri-La rich in spiritual reward with a culture insight into the primitive settlement of Buddhists whose life style remain unchanged for centuries. Recent road construction has created some disturbances for the trekking, however, Mustang trekking s still popular among trekkers.
Day 01: Arrival in Kathmandu.
Upon your arrival at Tribhuvan International Airport in Kathmandu, you will be warmly greeted by a staff / representative from Himalayan Trekking Team as you come out at the airport after the immigration formalities. You will be transferred to a hotel. A briefing of the trekking trip will be arranged at a convenient time.
Day 02: Cultural Tour and Trekking Permit and other Preparation.
After breakfast we will take you for a guided cultural tour and visit some of the historical and cultural sites which most of them are illustrated on the world heritage sites. You will visit historic Kathmandu Durbar Square clustered with old royal palaces and distinctive pagoda roofed temples, stone sculpture and old monuments. Swayambhunath, the Buddhist stupa believed to be 2500 years old towering on the top of a hill commanding sweeping view of Kathmandu valley, the most profound expression of Buddhist symbolism in Nepal and possibly in the world. Afternoon will be used for the preparation for the trekking.
Day 03: Kathmandu – Pokhara Drive (823m.): 6 – 7 hrs.
We 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. We arrive in Pokhara, a beautiful town full of natural beauty, serene Phewa Lake, Macchapucchhre and Annapurnas mirrored on the water of the lake. You check – in the hotel and enjoy your afternoon walking around the Lake.
Day 04: Pokhara – Jomsom flight – Kagbeni (2810m. ): 4 – 5 hrs.
We transfer you to the airport and fly to Jomsom in the morning. The twenty minutes flight offers magnificent views of Annapurnas and Dhaulagiri and takes us to Jomsom, the town of ancient trans-Himalayan trade route between Tibet and Nepal.We commence trekking following the bed of Kalignadaki River and arrive at Eklebhatti. Further following the Kaligandaki River for one hour takes us to Kagbeni, the confluence of Thak Khola and Mustang Khola.
Day 05: Kagbeni – Chhuksang (2920m.); 5 – 6 hrs.
The restricted area begins after crossing Kagbeni. The trail climbs over many ridges as it heads northGompa Kang and some caves are seen on the west bank of the Kali Gandaki River. Black, white and red chortens which justify upper Mustang appear and Nilgiri (7.061m) looms at the foot of the valley. We arrive at Chhuksang (2,920m), a Gurung village, situated at the confluence of the Narshing Khola and Mustang Khola. Across the river some spectacular red, eroded, 'organ-pipe' cliffs are seen above the inaccessible caves.
Day 06: Chhuksang – Syangbochen ( 3475m. ); 6 – 7 hrs.
The trail leaves Kali Gandaki valley and climbs steeply up a rocky gully to Chele (3030m) which marks a change from Manangi culture of the Gurung villages to Tibetan culture of Lo. The trail climbs steep to a cairn at 3080m with a view of Ghyakar across s huge canyon and then to a pass (3,480m). We descend gradually to Samar (3,290m), from where Annapurna Himal and Nilgiri are visible. The trail climbs to a ridge and then descends to a large gorge and enters into another valley filled with juniper trees.We arrive at Syangbochen.
Day 07: Syanhgbochen – Gemi ( 3520m. ): 5 – 6 hrs.
Again the trail climbs up to a ridge at 3800m and descends to Geling (3,440m). We climb gently through fields up the centre of the valley to the Nyi La (3,950m) which marks the southern boundary of Lo Manthang. The descent from the pass is gentle through blue, grey and red cliffs and arrives Gemi.
Day 08: Gemi – Charang ( 3490m. ); 4 – 5 hrs.
The trail passes through perhaps the longest and the most spectacular stretch of mani wall in Nepal and arrives at Charang (3,490m). There is a huge five storey white dzong (Tibetan style fortress) and red gompa in Charang. The gompa houses statues and Thanka paintings and other paintings of seated Buddha.
Day 09: Charang – Lo Manthang ( 3780m. ); 5 – 6 hrs.
From Charang, the trail descends gradually, crosses a river and climbs steeply to a ridge to enter a valley. Again the trail climbs gradually passing through a desert-like landscape painted in every hue of grey and yellow to a ridge (3,850m) which offers the first view of the walled city of Lo. After a short descend and a climb we arrive at the plateau of Lo Manthang (3,780m).
Day 10: Lo Manthang Exploration
There are four main temples in Lo Manthang. Champa Lhakang, which dates back to 1420, houses a huge painted clay statue of Maitreya, the future Buddha, sitting on a pedastal . The walls are painted with elaborate mandalas. The red Thugchen gompa is a massive assembly hall dating back to 1400 A. D. The gompa houses statues of the deity Sakyamuni surrounded by Avalokiteshwore and Padmasambhaba. There are dozens of beautiful small bronze, copper and brass statues inside Chodey gompa. A visit to king will be arranged in his palace, which is an imposing four-storey building in the center of the city.
Day 11: Lo Manthang – Drakmar ( 3810 m. ); 6 – 7 hrs.
We take different route for the return journey. The trail to Logekhar is not the main trading route and the areas is crisscrossed with herder's trails. The trail climbs steadly to a pass, offer the last glimpses of Lo Manthang and descends to a valley to arrive Logekhar. We visit a very old Ghar Gompa well known for rock carving and painting which is believed to be built by Guru Rimpoche. We make gradual ascend to a ridge for panoramic Himalayas of Annapurna range and make steep descend to Drakmar.
Day 12: Drakmar – Geling ( 3806m. ); 6 – 7 hrs.
We pass through a valley making gradual ascend to a hill and then descend to a stream, cross it and arrive at Gemi. We continue climbing up to a ridge from where the views of the Himalayas above Lo Manthang and Annapurna ranges including Tilicho peak are breathtaking .We descend and arrive at Geling.
Day 13: Geling – Chuksang ( 3050m. ); 6 – 7 hrs.
We gradually ascend, pass a small ridge and then descend to Syangbochen. We leave the main trail and descend to a valley to a stream. We follow the right side of stream and ascend to a cave where Padma Sambbava had meditated. After crossing the stream, we climb up to a ridge where we get good views of Annapurnas and other Himalayas. We descend through juniper brushes, pass through Samar village and then to Chuksang.
Day 14: Chuksang – Jomsom ( 2700m. ) ; 7 – 8 hrs.
We follow the Kali Gandaki River downstream, pass Kagbeni and follow Kali Gandaki River bed to arrive Jomsom.
Day 15: Jomsom – Pokhara Flight
We will transfer you to the airport in the morning for one hour flight to Pokhara. You will be transferred to hotel for check – in and you will spend the rest of the day exploring around Phewa Lake or boating on tranquil water of the Lake.
Day 16: Pokhara – Kathmandu
We will arrange you land transportation or the flight to Kathmandu as per your interest. You will check – in the hotel in Kathmandu. We take for a farewell dinner at one of the best Nepalese restaurants with culture program in Kathmandu.
Day 17: Airport Transfer
We transfer you to the airport and bid good bye to your onward journeys.
- 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 ), and 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
- 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 battery recharge, hot shower and boiled water in the trekking ).
- Gratuity for the trekking staffs
Upper Mustang Trek 17 Days 2000 US $ per person
Upper Mustang Heli Trek 13 Days 4200 US $ per person
Upper Mustang Overload Tour 14 Days 2500 US $ per person
Lower Mustang Trek 14 Days 1200 US $ per person