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Upper Mustang Trekking

Tour Duration: 17 days or more
Mustang Trekking days: 09 days or 12 days
Trek Grade: moderate
Max altitude: 4090m ( or 4210m on longer itinerary)
Trekking style: Full board Camping
Best Seasons: March – November
Minimum group size: 2 pax

Mustang TrekkingThe Upper Mustang trekking(popularly called the Mustang trek), is an exotic tour to unspoiled Tibetan villages on the other side of Nepalese Himalaya bordering with Tibet. The main highlights of Mustang trekking are ancient Tibetan villages, rare medieval Budhist arts, the exotic culture and the unique beauty of the Himalayan desert.

The medieval settlement of Upper Mustang and its capital Lo Manthang lie in the remote Himalayan desert behind the Annapurna and Dhaulagiri mountains .Foreigners were not allowed to enter Upper Mustang untill1992 . Upper Mustang is not much in contact with rest of Nepal, and keeps an aura of a remote, mysterious and unusual land, which is one of the unique charms of the Mustang trek. Geographically the land is an extension of the Tibetan plateau, characterized by windy and arid valleys, eroded canyons and unique stratified rock formations .The people in Upper Mustang are of Tibetan origin, migrated from Tibet centuries ago, and belong to Bhotias and Loba communities. They practice Sakyapa school of Tibetan Buddhism. Upper Mustang is perhaps the only place to see Tibetan culture in completely undisturbed state. Upper Mustang TrekkingThe houses and monasteries in here have medieval look and unique local architecture. Mostly they are built with stone and sun baked mud bricks.People mostly grow potatoes, barley and buck wheat .It is a land covering about 2600 sq km in area and 6000 people. All their festivals are religious in nature, the Tiji festival being the biggest . This small medieval kingdom in the vast desert is ruled by a local king .The capital called Lo Manthang , a walled complex with the houses of local nobilities and monasteries will be one of the main attraction of your Mustang trek.

Recently in 2007, an international team of explorers have discovered invaluable objects of cultural and historical importance in Upper Mustang caves. In high caves requiring technical climbing they have discovered beautiful Buddhist murals, and historical objects, dating back to , according to them around 800years ago. The Mustang trekking will reward you with a rare visit to a plce perfectly untouched by modernity, preserving its ancient Buddhist cultur , traditions and invaluable art objects in high Himalayan desert.Those having longer holiday can extend their Mustang trek beyond Lo Manthang and visit these caves and further explore the region visitng many of its ancient monasteries and cultural treasures.

Our Group with Mustang KinfA short 25 minute flight takes us from Pokhara to Jomsom .Hiking along the Kaligandaki gorge , the deepest in the world , we head for medieval village of Kagbeni.The trail north of Kagbeni leads to the Mustang trek.Depending on our itinerary , for the next 09 – 12 days we trek through the ancient villages of Samar, Charang and Geling before we reach the capital Lo Manthang at 3750m.Besides Lo Manthang , there are places of great interest including the Namgyal Gompa( which also serves as a local court) and the village of Tingkar, Garfuk and Nifuk.You still find people dwelling in the caves in these villages and some caves have amazing stupas and Buddhist murals . On the longer version of the Mustang trek, we futher explore the region and emerge to popular Muktinath Temple via Yara. After a visit to the holy temple of Muktinath we return by flight from Jomsom to Pokhara. Upper Mustang trekking is not only a culturally rewarding tour, but also a rare adventure. This is a fully supported camping trek. You sleep in the tents and eat the meals prepared by our camp cook. The average walking is 6 hour per day and you carry just your light day pack during the trek.

Mustang Trekking Itinerary
(10 day permit)

Day 01: Arrival in Kathmandu .You will be received by our staff and  transferred to hotel on private vehicle.  Overnight  in hotel.

Day 02: Guided sightseeing tour in Kathmandu, covering Pashupatinath temple,Bouddhanath Stupa, Kathmandu Durbar square and Swoyambhunath Stupa .(B)

Day 03: Flight  to Pokhara  accompanied by your trekking guide. Guided sightseeing tour in Pokhara .Boating in the Phewa lake. Transfer to hotel.(B)

Day 04: Early morning  flight  from Pokhara to Jomsom .(2800m)
The flight offers great view of Annapurna and Dhaulagiri mountains .Meet your trekking staff  in Jomsom and  start hiking for few hours before  we stop at Kagbeni(2800m) . Kagbeni on Nepal Tibet trade route is a traditional town with medieval look and interesting alleys. Your upper Mustang trekking starts  from here and your trekking permit days are counted once you enter the check point here in  Kagbeni .Overnight at  tented camp .(B, L, D)

Day 05: Trek to Chele(3050m).
The climb from Kagbeni to Chele passes through beautiful village of Tangbe, which offers white washed traditional houses and fields of barley, buckwheats and apple orchards. On the way we enjoy good views of Nilgiri mountain .Passing several ridges we cross a stream after Chhusang village, leave the Kaligandaki valley behind and climb further to the village of Chele. From Chele we start observing the typical Tibetan settlements of Upper Mustang .Overnight in tented camp. (B, L, D)

Day 06: Trek to  Geling (3520 m).
The first part of the trek today is through steep trails  arid desert like land. We will see several eroded canyons, and interesting chortens along the trail.After gaining substantial height , we descend down through pleasant trails to the ancient village of Samar .Climbing again to a ridge of 3800 m ,and passing through some gorges and valleys we reach the village of Geling .Overnight at tented camp.(B,L,D)

Day 07: Trek to Charang (3580m)
 The trail is pleasant and the walk is softer today . The trail climbs gently up from Geling to an interesting pass  and descends below the blue, gray and red cliffs. After crossing a steel bridge at Tangmar river we arrive to a Mani Wall ,  the longest and most spectacular  in Nepal. Climbing over another pass at 3600 m , the route makes a long gentle descent to village of Charang . The huge five-story white Dzong(  is a fort ) and red Gompa are the main attractions for visitors. The collections of statues and Thankas as well as many large paintings of seated Buddhas are also equally interesting. Overnight at tented camp(B,L,D)

Day 08: Trek to Lo Manthang (3780 m).
From Charang we continue leaving some ridges behind and  cross small streams before  we finally reach  a pass from where there is a view of the walled city of Lo Manthang. Descending further and crossing yet another stream , we climb up into the plateau of Lo-Manthang, the capital of Upper Mustang. Hiking near the walled complex is as rewarding as the tour inside the complex. Overnight at tented camp.(B, L, D)

Day 09: Exploration day around Lo Manthang  .
Inside the walled settlement of Lo Manthang are the houses of local nobilities and important Gompas  and monasteries .There are lots of things of interest here .After completing the tour of  Lo Manthang ,we hike or take a horse ride to the famous Nagyal Gompa which is about two and half hour walk, one way. Namgyal Gompa is situated on a hilltop, and serves as an important monastery of the local community and also as a local court. Overnight at tented camp.(B, L, D)

Day 10: Lomanthang to Ghami(3460 m)
Today we descend from Lo Manthang and reach to the village of Ghami for our camp. It is a lovely village with lots and lots of farm land with barley fields and  white washed houses .Overnight in tented camp.(B, L, D)

Day 11: Trek to Samar(3450 m)
Day 12: Trek to Kagbeni

Day 13: Kagbeni to Muktinath(3800m)
The trail goes through the ancient  village of Jharkot where one can visit the Jharkot monastery, Tibetan herbal medical center and the old fortress of Jharkot, once served as palace.Trekking along the popular trail of Jomsom Muktinath trek we reach the important Hindu shrine of Muktinath and watch Hindu and Buddhist pilgrims on high Himalaya.Overnight in tented camp.(B, L, D)

Day 14: Muktinath to Jomsom(2800m).Celebrate your last day of trekking with your trekking crew.(B, L, D)

Day 15: Early morning flight  to Pokhara.(B)

Day 16: Fly to Kathmandu , leisure time for shopping and rest.Farewell Nepali dinner with  ethnic cultural programmmes. (B, D)

Day 17: Fly home .Our staff will drop you to the airport and see off.

Note : B=Breakfast, L=lunch, D= Dinner

Note : The above itinerary is a standard itinerary with no spare days. It is often wiser to put aside one extra day in case bad weather delays your flight  to or from Jomsom air strip. The above is simply  a standard itinerary of what we provide. All our treks can be customized at your request to accommodate your specific requirements.

Special requirements for  Mustang trekking
Participants are 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(which we will arrange for you) to visit this special preserved land . The permit fee is US $ 500 per person for  a period of 10 days  or US $ 710 for thirteen days itinerary. Counting starts from Kagbeni once you enter restricted area . For any extra days in restricted area you have to pay US $70 per day.

Price: All our trips are tailor made trips with personalized services. In order for us to quote you the price, please write us with the number of persons in your group, your choice of hotels and ammendments in our itinerary, if any. Our prices are very reasonnable for the services we provide.

Mustang Trekking (longer itinerary)
(13 days permit)

Day 01: Arrival in Kathmandu, transfer to hotel
Day 02: Guided sightseeing tour of Kathmandu, including Pashupatinath, Bouddhanath, Swoyambhunath and Kathmandu Durbar square.
Day 03: Flight to Pokhara, boating in the lake and short sight seeing around the town.
Day 04: Early morning flight to Jomsom. Meet your trekking crew and trek to Kagbeni
Day 05: Trek to Chele
Day 06: Trek to Geling , visit interesting Gompas on the way
Day 07: Trek to Dhakmar
Day 08: Trek to Ghar Gompa and then to Tsarang, Ghar gompa is older than Samye monastery in Tibet, supposed to be built around 730 AD.
Day 09: Trek to Lo Manthang, visit important monasteries in Lomanthang
Day 10: Visit Namgyal Gompa, very impressive and important Gompa in
Day 11: Visit Tsocher, see the murals , art tworks and monasteries in the caves. You will see people living in caves even today.Back to Lomanthang. It is 3 and half hours hike one way.
Day 12: Trek to Yara village .
Day 13: Hike to interesting 13th century Gompa inside a cave and back to Yara village.
Day 14: Trek to Tangbe(3240m)
Day 15: Trek to Paha (4210 m)
Day 16: Trek to Tetang (3667m)
Day 17: Trek to Muktinath(3800m)
Day 18: Trek to Jomsom(2800m)
Day 19: Fly to Pokhara, rest in Pokhara
Day 20: Flight to Kathmandu, shopping and leisure in Kathmandu. Evening, celebrate your Mustang trek with traditional Nepali dinner and ethnic cultural show.
Day 21: Fly back home.

Included in the price

  • All surface transfers as mentioned in the itinerary.
  • Domestic airfare from Kathmandu to Pokhara and back.
  • Two star hotel in Kathmandu and Pokhara in twin sharing , bed and breakfast basis
  • Tented accommodation and equipment during the  trek. We  provide two men tents, dinning tents, kitchen gears, dining table, chairs, toilet tents.
  • Trekking crew and  their food, accommodation, salary, insurance, equipment and a general first aid kit.
  • Full board meal  with tea ,coffee for the clients in trek days,  prepared by our camp cook
  • Trekking permit worth  USD 500(for ten day permit) or USD 510  (for 13 day Permit, longer itinerary) per person and Annapurna conservation  fees (approx  USD 31)
  • Guided sightseeing tour in Kathmandu and Pokhara
  • Farewell Nepali dinner with cultural show

Not included in the price

  • Single suppliment charges (if required.)
  • Lunch and dinner in Kathmandu and Pokhara
  • Nepal entry visa fee($30)(given for 60 days upon arrival, requires 2 photos)
  • Domestic airport tax of USD 3 and international airport  tax of  USD 24
  • Personal equipments and clothing
  • International airfare and  your insurances
  • Cold drinks and beverages
  • Personal expenses and  tips to the crew
  • Any other expenses than mentioned above as included

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