Mustang Region is also known as the Last Forbidden Kingdom, since the region was restricted for outsiders until Nepal Government announced the opening of the restricted areas in October 1991. The Mustangis or the people of Mustang call themselves Lobas, and they have their own King or Tribe-leader, Jigme Palbar Bista.
After Nepal was declared a republic in 2007, the Nepal Government took back the official recognition of the Bista as the Mustangi King. However, the people there still respect him as their King or tribe-leader. Bista also grants audience the visitor upon request. There is also strict control in obtaining a special permit from the department of immigration to protect their tradition from outside influence as well as to protect their environment.
The Upper Mustang trek starts from Jomsom to Kagbeni, the entry point of upper Mustang Region. Follow the banks of Kaligandaki River upstream to get to Lo-Mangthang, the capital of the upper Mustang. The trek passes through high peaks, passes, glaciers, and alpine valleys. The thousands years of isolation has kept the culture, lifestyle and heritage remain unchanged for centuries and to this date.
The houses in Mustang are mostly made from stone and sun baked mud bricks. The city wall and the four storey palace in Lo-Manthang are some of the beautiful architectures of Mustang region.
Another attraction in the Mustang region is the Tiji Festival influenced by Tibetan Buddhism, which is timed to coincide with the end of the dry season (late winter/spring).
|DEPARTURE/RETURN LOCATION||TIA Kathmandu|
|HIGHEST ALTITUDE||4200 m|
Important Note: Your safety is of paramount concern while traveling with Epic Adventures. Please note that your leader has the authority to amend or cancel any part of the itinerary if it is deemed necessary due to safety concerns. Every effort will be made to keep to the above itinerary; however, since this adventure entails traveling in remote mountainous regions, we cannot guarantee that we will not deviate from it. Weather conditions, health condition of a group member, unexpected natural disasters, etc., can all contribute to changes in the itinerary. The leader will try to ensure that the trip runs according to plan, but please be prepared to be flexible if required.
Arrival in Kathmandu – 1,300m/4,264 ft
Welcome to Kathmandu, the capital city of Nepal. Upon your arrival, our representative will meet you at the airport and transfer you to the hotel. Today we will spend time resting and exploring the local areas around the hotel. Overnight at a 3-star hotel in Kathmandu.
Kathmandu Sightseeing & Preparation for the Trek
Today, we will head out to explore Kathmandu city. Kathmandu is an ancient city with heritages that can be traced back to 167BC. Over the course of history, the city has been ruled by multiple dynasties, the influence of which can be seen in the many UNESCO World Heritage Sites of the city. We will visit temples such as the Pashupatinath, Boudhanath, and Swayambhunath along with the Kathmandu Durbar Square. Meanwhile, we will also prepare the essentials for the upcoming trek. Overnight at hotel.
Kathmandu to Pokhara [823m/2,700ft]: 6 hrs drive
Today, we will drive to Pokhara and get the first glimpse of the countryside life. We will be making this journey through winding roads alongside fast flowing rivers such as the Trishuli and Marshyangdi. We will also occasionally get sneak peeks of the Himalayas rising above the lush green hills. On reaching the beautiful city of Pokhara, we will check in to the hotel and spend rest of the evening among the multiple restaurants and enjoy the nightlife by the shores of Phewa Lake. Overnight at hotel.
Fly to Jomsom & trek to Kagbeni [2,858m/9,375ft]: 3-4 hrs
Today, early in the morning, we will take our flight to Jomsom and witness a complete switch in the landscape. The flight from Pokhara to Jomsom will take you above the snow-capped Himalayas and the many river valleys cut by fast flowing rivers. Jomsom is a small town located in the banks of the fierce Kali Gandaki River. From Jomsom, we will walk to Kagbeni, which is an oasis in a cold dessert setting. Prepare for fierce winds in both Jomsom and Kagbeni. Overnight in Kagbeni.
Kagbeni to chele [3050m/10,004ft]: 5-6 hrs
We wake up to the view of barren hills in Kagbeni, a small village sitting on the banks of the fierce Kali Gandaki River. From here, we will follow the stone paved paths to reach Chele. Fighting cold fast winds, we will slowly ascend enjoying the views of breathtaking dry mountains. Deep canyons, small villages, and valleys can be seen on this trail as we cross many suspension bridges. Overnight in Chele.
Chele to Syanbochen [3475m/11,398ft]: 6-7 hrs
To arrive in Syangboche in daylight, we will leave Chele early in the morning. Here, we meet the first steep climb of our trek. Today we will be crossing two passes which are Taklam La (3624m) and Dajori La (3753m). We will later descend and cross Samar village and finally climb a ridge before reaching Syangboche. Overnight in Syangboche.
Syanbochen to Ghaymi [3520m/11,546ft]: 5-6 hrs
The journey to Ghami begins with crossing Syangboche La Pass (3850m). We will pass multiple small villages with Tibetan influence and teahouses. We will be crossing beautiful forests and various crop fields with people in traditional clothes working in it. After crossing Nyi La Pass (4010m), we will trek down to the village of Ghami, a whitewashed village filled with colorful Chortens. Overnight in Ghami.
Ghaymi to Charang [3500m/11,480ft]: 4-5 hrs
We will cross the longest Mani wall of Mustang situated above Ghami village and make our way to Charang. Many structures of Tibetan religious, spiritual, and cultural significance can be seen on our path today. Gompas of brilliant colors adorned with prayer flags pave the entrance to the village of Charang. In the evening, we will visit the 400 years old monastery of the Gelup Sect in Charang. Overnight in Charang.
Charang to Lo-Mangthang (3700m/12,136ft): 5-6 hrs
We will cross the bridge over Charang Khola and ascend on a quiet and solitary trail via Sungda Chorten alongside a small stream. While we take many ascends and descends, the excitement of reaching the beautiful walled capital of Lo grows continuously. Upon reaching Lo La Pass (3950m), we will be able to get a stunning view of the city of Lo which is cozily nestled in the lap of colorful dessert mountain. We pass a small monastery as we enter Lo Manthang. Overnight in Lo.
Lo Manthang being the capital of the former Kingdom of Lo has many palaces and fortress for us to see. Surrounded by walls and many Gompas, this cozy little village sits comfortably in the stark grey dry background giving it a different sense of grandeur. The Tibetan and Buddhist influence being displayed from the multiple gompas and prayer walls give Lo-Manthang a peaceful and serene setting. Lo Manthang also houses the sky caves which are the tombs of the ancient people of the region. The whitewashed houses and the King’s palace built in around 1400 AD is the major attraction of the Kingdom of Lo. We can also hike up to get the better view of the village. Overnight in Lo.
Lo-Mangthang to Drakmar [3810 m/12,500ft]: 6-7 hrs
Taking an alternative route, we will move towards Dhakmar today. We will descend amid the dry mountains before ascending to Chogo La Pass (4280m). We then follow the desert trails to reach Ghar Gumpa, which is one of the most sacred monasteries in Upper Mustang. The monastery houses scriptures of Padmasambhava and is believed to carry the pure virtue of Lo Nying Sect. Afterward, we will descend to Dhakmar via Mui La Pass (4170m) for the overnight stay.
Dhakmar to Ghiling [3806m/12,484ft]: 5-6 hrs
Mostly descending today, we will make our way to Ghiling. Strong winds are likely to make this trek difficult so it is pivotal that we maintain balance. Following the dry desert type landscape, we make our way with the views of barren mountains keeping us in good faith and motivated. We cross a Mani wall and the passes of Ghami La (3765m) and Nyi La (4010m) to arrive in Ghiling. Overnight in Ghiling.
Ghiling to Chhuksang [3050m/10,004ft]: 5-6 hrs
Crossing small villages, we pass through the similar sandy landscape to the village of Chhuksang. Apple trees line the way with thick walled houses and stone paved paths as we walk on the riverbed of Mustang Khola. Upon reaching, overnight in Chhuksang.
Chhuksang to Jomsom [2700/8,856ft]: 6-7 hrs
Today as we make our way to Jomsom through the riverbed of Kali Gandaki River, we feel the change in the landscape. We will walk alongside apple and apricot trees on stone paved streets. It almost feels as if we are walking in some old age village untouched by time. We can explore the windy town upon arrival. Overnight in Jomsom.
Fly back to Pokhara
Today we will bid farewell to the beautiful windy town of Jomsom and take a flight back to the city of Pokhara. This flight is a good time to reflect upon the journey we just completed. Upon arrival in Pokhara, the rest of the day can be spent relaxing by the lakeside. Overnight at a 3-star hotel in Pokhara.
Drive from Pokhara to Kathmandu
Today after breakfast, we will take the familiar road back to Kathmandu enjoying the view of the rivers, the hills, and the roadside settlements. In Kathmandu, you can explore the nearby markets and eateries to get a good taste of the capital city. Overnight at a 3-star hotel in Kathmandu.
Farewell! Our representative will drop you at the airport for your scheduled flight back home.