Upper Mustang Trek
1750

Overview

Mustang literally means “fertile land” in Tibetan language. Once the capital city of the ancient kingdom of Lo-Manthang, today Mustang is one of the most unscathed places on the earth, a far cry from the postmodern world of today. Upper Mustang trekking is definitely one of the most enigmatic and unforgettable trek you will embark on.

Up until 1992 AD Upper Mustang was a restricted demilitarized area, which makes it the most conserved region in the world.

Mustang is tucked away from the rest of the world, right to the north of the major Himalayan range of Nepal. Despite of the hardships and adversities, happiness and joy sprouts from ever smiling and warm faces. Every single piece of rock and centuries old monasteries which carries a unique story greets you in your Mustang Trek footsteps.

The Upper Mustang comprises approximately northern two-third of Mustang District of Dhaulagiri zone. Trekking in the region officially started only in 1992. It allowed only a few number of trekkers keeping in consideration the delicate environment and the ancient enclosed culture of the people.

A trek in this legendary Kingdom of copper red parched valleys, eroded canyon and deepest gorges decorated with yak caravans, colorful prayer flags and mudbrick houses in the backdrop of magnificent Annapurna, Dhaulagiri, Tukche and Nilgiri is your ultimate journey to Shangri-La. Experience the exotic culture of the mountain people like Thakalis, Tibetan and Gurung and be part of their strong culture that has survived for centuries in the driest place of the country.

The Upper Mustang Trek is fairly easy in relation to the gratifying experience it provides. We will trek along the permitted route of the Lo-Manthang to reach the maximum altitude of 3,840m. Join Nepal Eco Adventure’s Upper Mustang Trek, a 14 day journey to the land beyond the mountains, to the kingdom within a republic where till today the king is worshipped as divine.

Upper Mustang Trekking Highlights

  • Ancient Kingdom
  • Picturesque mountains to the south
  • The region situated in rain shadow
  • Unique cultural and historical monuments
  • Monasteries of high importance
  • Scenic flight to and from Jomsom

Itinerary

Day 1
Drive to Pokhara (900m)

Early in the morning, we will travel to the beautiful valley of Pokhara via Prithvi Highway. You will see western Himalayans during this scenic 6 to 7 hour long bus ride. You will have the opportunity to explore around this beautiful lake city in the night or go for boating in the grand Phewa Lake. We will spend the night at the local Hotel.

Day 2
Fly to Jomsom and trek to Kagbeni (2,800m)

We will catch a plane from Pokhara to Jomsom, headquarter of Mustang. It will take around 20 minutes to reach the beautiful town of Jomsom. We will fly North-West from Pokhara towards great portal between Annapurna and Dhaulagiri. You will enjoy beautiful views of the lofty hills and mountains during your flight. From Jomsom, we will trek uphill for 3 hours alongside Kali Gandaki to reach Kagbeni, the gateway to Upper Mustang. The village is located at the bank of two rivers. We will spend the night in a Guesthouse.

Day 3
Trek to Chele (3,050m)

We will continue our journey towards the east bank of the Kali Gandaki climbing through numerous ridges, and then reach north to the Tangbe village. This picturesque town is a labyrinth of narrow alleys amid white-washed mud and stone houses, buckwheat fields and apple trees. The majestic Nilgiri domintates the southern sky of Kagbeni. From there, we will hike to Chhusang village for 2 hours and then cross the dwindling Kali Gandaki. We will climb up to huge red mass of Conlomerate that had fallen from the cliff above, forming a tunnel through which Kali Gandaki flows. Crossing the Kali Gandaki Valley, we will climb uphill to tiche Chele. You will witness the slow transition in culture, from Manangi culture to Tibetan. We will spend the night in a Guesthouse.

Day 4
Trek to Syangbochen (3,800m)

Our trek goes along a steep barren land, alongside the copper red canyon. We will make a gradual descent to some Chortens on a ridge, and after hiking downhill for some more time we will reach the beautiful village of Samar. From there, we will climb a ridge and descend into a giant gorge. We will keep trekking through another valley, fields, cross a stream and climb up a ridge which lies at 3,800m. We will climb yet another pass, go through another ridge and trek downhill to Syangbochen. Overnight at Guesthouse.

Day 5
Trek to Ghami (3,520m)

From Syangbochen, we will gently hike uphill to a pass at 3,770 and trek downhill to reach the village of Geling. From Gheling, we will go uphill passing through fields to the center of the valley. Then we will climb a tough terrain across the head of the valley to the Nyi La pass (3,840m). From there we will climb downhill for half an hour to reach a trail junction, the right trail is a route to Charang while the left one leads to Ghami. It is a village of clustered white washed mud and stone houses canopied by an overhanging cliff. Overnight at Guesthouse.

Day 6
Trek to Charang (3,560m)

We will trek to the driest part of Mustang today. It will be a tiring trek in this rough terrain. However, on reaching our destination, we will be rewarded with splendid views of the remote countryside, and Rocky Mountains in all directions. On reaching Charang, a large village at the top of the Charang Chu Canyon, we will take a rest. On the east of the village, there’s a big fort from the medieval times and a red Gompas which house a spectacular collection of statues and thangkas. Overnight at guesthouse.

Day 7
Trek to Lo-Manthang (3,840m)

We will trek to one of the major attraction center of this trip : Lo Manthang, which was a principality up until the 1950s. It consists of around 150 households and residences for lama gurus. We will trek through Lo-Gekar, which is the oldest Gompa in Nepal and older than the Samye Gompa of the Tibet. On reaching the walled city of Lo, you will have the opportunity to visit the ancient temples and monasteries of the region and the periphery of the King’s impressive palace, where the King and Queen of Lo- Manthang reside. You will have the chance to take horses on lease and visit the beautiful valley. Overnight Guesthouse.

Day 8
Exploration of Lo-Manthang

We will explore this mystical town of Lo-Manthang, starting with a 2 hour visit of the Namgyal Gompa. This beautiful Gompa is situated on a hilltop, which is of high social, religious as well as legal importance as it serves as a local courthouse. After that, we will visit the village of Tingkhar, northwest of Lomanthang with its 40 households. We will also visit Champa Lhakang where you will admire a large Buddha statue and intricate Mandalas painted on the walls. We will spend the night in a guesthouse situated in Lo-Manthang.

Day 9
Trek to Dhamkar (3,820m)

We will exit the Lo-Manthang taking the upper highland trail. It will reward us with splendid views of Lo-Manthang and Charang Valley, with snowy mounts in the background. We will cross the Dhi Pass at 4,100m and reach Dhamkar, where we will spend the night at Guesthouse.

Day 10
Trek down to Syangbochen

With Dhaulagiri and Nilgiri among other mounts standing tall in the background, we will hike down to Syangbochen. Via Rachen Gompa. Rachen Gompa is a mystical Gompa which grew by itself at the lap of a rocky cave. We will spend the night in a guesthouse in Syangbochen.

Day 11
Trek to Chhusang (2,980m)

We will continue our trail through steep ridges and hills along pleasing sceneries of mountains and hills. We will trek to Tetang, the upper village of Chuksang which lies between two hills. It is a safe escapade from the fierce wind that hits the Kali Gandaki valley frequently. The night will be spent in a Guesthouse.

Day 12
Trek to Jomsom (2,720m)

On the last day of this memorable trek, we will go through the trail of Jharkot village and visit the its Monastery, Tibetan Herbal Medicine Center, and ancient fortress which once was a palace. During descend towards Jomsom we will relish the view of Kali Gandaki Valley and Kagbeni Village. This is the gateway to Mustang. We will celebrate the last day of the trek in Jomsom with all the trekking staffs. We will spend the night in a Guesthouse.

Day 13
Fly to Pokhara and rest

After taking a 20 minute flight to Pokhara, we will spend the rest of the day in this beautiful lake city to explore, go boating in exotic Phewa, Rupa and Begnas Lake, visit the beautiful hilltop monastery or go exploring the mystical caves. You will have the chance to buy some souvenirs and enjoy nightlife in the vivacious city. Overnight at Hotel.

Day 14
Drive back to Kathmandu

After breakfast, we will travel to the capital via Prithvi Highway. Once again the scenic bus ride will keep you refreshed throughout the journey. We will say farewell once in Kathmandu. May you enjoy the rest of your time in Nepal !

What is Included

  • Three meals a days (Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner) during the trek.
  • Fresh fruit after the dinner every night.
  • Trekking lodge( Tea house) accommodations during the trek.
  • Annapurna Conservation Area Project (ACAP) entry permit & special Upper Mustang permit.
  • Tourist bus to pokhara and again tourist bus from Pokhara to Kathmandu.
  • Flight ticket ( Pokhara-Jomsom-Pokhara) with airport pickup and drop and airport tax included.
  • A highly experience, helpful, knowledgeable, friendly, well English speaking well trained, Government License holder mountain guide with all his salary, food, drinks, accommodation, transport and insurance.
  • A Strong, helpful porter with proper equipment (one porter for two people).
  • Medical supplies (first aid kit will be available).
  • Arrangement of Emergency Helicopter service which will be paid by your Travel Insurance company.
  • Sleeping bags, Down Jacket, Duffel bag and Walking Poles (if you needed, to be returned after the trip)
  • Nepal Eco Adventure branded t-shirt and cap.
  • Government taxes, service change and official expenses.
  • Two nights standard hotel in Pokhara with breakfast.
  • Oxymeter to check your pulse and oxygen saturation and heart rate twice daily (Very useful to check Altitude Mountain Sickness(AMS) symptoms) Which will ensure you trek is in the safest hands possible for all levels of trekker.
  • Assistant guide group size above 6+ person.

What is Excluded

  • Airport pick up and drop.
  • Your hotel room in Kathmandu.
  • Meals in Pokhara.
  • Nepal entry visa (You may easily issue visa on arrival at Tribhuwan International Airport ). $40 USD for 30 days Visa.
  • Your Travel and Medical Insurance.
  • International Airfare.
  • Your Personal Expenses.
  • Cold and hot drinks on trek as well as desserts and sweets like chocolate, cake or pudding (those you choose to purchase along the way and during evenings in the Tea Houses)
  • Hot shower and battery charging on the tea houses.
  • Tips for the guide, porter and driver (Tipping is expected)
  • Excess baggage more than 15kg for Jomsom flight.

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Overall Company Rating
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  1. Upper Mustang Trek
    Well, what can I say? My 16 year-old son and I did the Upper Mustang trek in June / July with our guide, Narayan and our porter, Vikram, and just had the most wonderful time! I can't rate Chhatra and his team highly enough. They were friendly, knowledgeable and professional throughout and we felt looked-after and safe during the whole experience. Before the trip, Chhatra was really helpful, answering our numerous emails and questions quickly and during our trekking adventures Narayan and Vikram looked after us really well. Narayan is a qualified International Mountain Guide with 18 years experience and has been to the Hillary Step on Everest without Oxygen, so I felt very safe in his company. He has worked with Vikram for many years and they made a great team, helping us to wade across swollen rivers, taking us on trails not marked on the map and making sure we were safe at all times. It was a lot hotter than I expected (I spent the whole time in shorts and t-shirt), so Narayan also organised for our spare kit to be taken down the mountain when we realised our thermals etc. wouldn't be needed. The trek took us through amazing scenery and we visited monasteries and caves along the way. Lo Manthang is lovely, though has had some damage from the earthquake and they are working very hard to repair the damage - thoroughly worth the effort of getting there. (It is possible to get a jeep part or all the way to Lo Manthang if you don't fancy walking) Most of the houses and people in the Upper Mustang region are Tibetan so if you want a taste of Tibet (I was there a few years ago and it is extremely similar), then this is the trek for you! Tips for the trip: * Book an extra day or two onto your overall holiday. Flights weren't running from Jomsom due to bad weather on our way down, so we went on the local bus, which got stuck in the mud twice on the way to Pokhara - what an adventure! - but this put us a day behind schedule, so I was glad I'd booked an extra day at the end of our trip, just in case something like this happened. * Buy an umbrella in Pokhara to keep off the intense sun. Sometimes in the morningson the trek, it is very hot and there is no cooling wind, so a brolly is a great bit of kit. Try to buy one with a slivered underside - they work much better. Forget using brollies in the afternoon, though - the Anabatic winds can get really strong - I almost got blown off my feet once or twice! * Buy a dust mask. It is very dry and dusty in the Upper Mustang region and occasionally people put on masks when it gets too bad - this only happened 2 or 3 times during our trip, for about 10-15 minutes at a time, so not much of an inconvenience. We used our buffs, which worked fine, but I think a dust mask would work better.
  2. Upper Mustang Trek
    I trekked with Chhatra from Nepal Eco Adventure back in July/August 2012 through the Upper mustang region.Chhatra was an excellent guide, very organized and extremely helpful and knowledgeable, before, during and even after our trek. He spent some time showing us around Kathmandu and helped us organize the rest of our Nepal trip, post-trek. He gave us great recommendations for things to see, places to eat, etc. On the trek he exposed us to the culture of the Nepali mountain people and was even able to book a sitting to meet with the Prince of the Upper Mustang Region. Super friendly and great guide to trek with! Highly recommended.
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Starting at $1,750/person
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Trek’s Route Map

Upper Mustang Trek

Trip Facts

  • 14 Days Upper Mustang Trek
  • Moderate
  • Minimum 02 persons
  • March to November
  • 3840m
  • Aeroplane / Tourist Bus

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