Upper Mustang trekking is officially opened in 1992. Before that it was completely forbidden for foreigners, it is calling the rain shadowed land because it is behind the mountains and also call Himalayan desert. The culture, tradition and landscape are distinctly attractive, thousands of years old monastery, Buddhist culture, stupas, ancients caves, hidden villages are gleams of new experience of lifetime. It allows limited numbers of trekkers each year in order to protect and conserve the local Tibetan tradition and the fragile environment. Trekking into this fabled forbidden kingdom of vast, arid valleys, eroded canyons, ochre valley, yak caravans, colorful-painted clay bricked houses on the back dropped of majestic mountain Annapurna, Dhaulagiri, Nilgiri, Tukuche makes Mustang trekking a very especial.
In upper Mustang well known and dominant famous city Lo manthang is an ultimate destination. Lo means a remote Himalayan province while Manthang means abound place of beauty and happiness in Tibetan language. In upper Musatang real Tibetan Buddhism, lifestyles, religion, art and culture is still well preserved. During the 15th and 16th centuries, the acquisition of immense fortunes from the salt trade made Mustang a highly prosperous kingdom. Mustang became an important transit point on the salt trade route between Tibet and the large markets for salt in lowland Nepal and India. Later, due to the decline of the salt trade, agriculture and animal husbandry became the most important occupations of the people. Still a little Himalayan kingdom exists in Upper Mustang with a local king of Lo Monthang whose title has been given the honorary rank of Colonel in Nepal army.
Mustang: the land of happiness and beauty, where the soul of human is still considered to be as real as the feet he/she walks. They are very rich in culture and tradition, also strong believes in Himalayan Buddhism. They have different carnivals and ceremonies Such as TIJI among them Vulture feeding funeral is meaningful and quite strange to see for the first time however it is usual practice in the fold of hidden paradise.
Day 01:Arrive in Kathmandu, transfer to your hotel and check in then free time and farewell dinner in the evening.
Day 02:sightseeing in Kathmandu around in the world heritage site such as Bhaktapur, Patan, Darbar Square, Monkey Temple, Pashupatinath temple and Bauddhanath Stupa or you can take relaxing day free.
Day 03:Katmandu – Pokhara: By bus (200 km) in 7h and by flight 30 minutes.
Day 04:Pokhara - Jomosom (2713m) by plane – trek to Kagbeni (2810m) 4 hours.
Day 05:Kagbeni to Chele (3000m) in 6h 30:
Day 06:Chele to Syangboche (3800m) 6 hours
Day 07: Syangboche to Ghami (3570m) in 6 hours.
Day 08:Ghami to Tsarang (3580m):
Day 09: Tsarang to Lo Manthang (3700m) in 5 hours:
Day 11:Lo Manthang to Dhakmar(3580m) in 6: 30 hours.
Day 12:Dhakmar to Samar (3600m) 6 hours.
Day 13:Samar to Kagbeni 5hours
Day 14:Kagbeni to Jomosom 4hours
Day 15:Jomsom to Pokhara
Day 16:Drive or fly to Pokhara
Day 17:Back to home
Day 04Pokhara - Jomosom (2713m) by plane – trek to Kagbeni (2810m) 4 hours. It is morning flight approximately 35 minutes from Pokhara, all your trekking supporting staff will be waiting you in Jomsom. Your guide will introduce all of them and take some tea break meanwhile your staff will prepare the luggage and all your necessary stuff for the further trekking and follow the north arid plateau that stretch up to Tibet. The trail is quite barren with craggy rocks, sands, mostly dusty, windy and flat. However it is very picturesque by the views of massive peaks all around such as Dhaulagiri (8167m), Tukuche (6920m) Nilgiri and Tilicho.
Day 05Kagbeni to Chele (3000m) in 6h 30:The path follows the Kaligandaki River, the river bank is spread widely where you can check your luck for fossils, many people may searching them while they are walking along this river bank, the old villages Chhuksang, Tangbe are quite beautiful. While you pass these villages you be spellbound by its beauties, nature's flat piece of dry and deserted land. The scenery is amazing with its red sandstone pillars and canyons. Thousands years of erosion have formed the landscape; rock formations in fantastic forms and colors will be our companion throughout the trip. The Chele is nestled among extensive barley fields which is small hamlet over the Kaligandaki River bank.
Day 06Chele to Syangboche (3800m) 6 hours The climb continues along the side of spectacular steep canyon with the views of Nilgiri, Tilicho and so many standing mountain hills. After a long steep to the pass, pleasant trail leads to Samar (3300m) where a lot of artificial poplars trees are grown, here you can make lunch break because further ahead is not any good place. Then the trail climbs steadily into the valley filled with juniper trees, rocky hills up to the pass and descends to Syangboche 3800m which was used as pastoral stops in the former time.
Day 07 Syangboche to Ghami (3570m) in 6 hours. After walking of 15 minutes a distinctive red painted chorten appears which is call Yanda la pass from where the Guiling villages is visible with two red Gompas. Above the Guiling village wide barren pastureland is waved, brown hills and also the Nyi La pass (3840m) straight ahead. From Yanda la there are two ways, one descends to Guiling and one directly heads to Nyi La pass along the Tama Gaun and two outstanding Chortens. In upper Mustang we meet many local people on foot and horseback which is very common. The trail descends from the pass to Ghami village, the third big village in Upper Mustang where the miner hospital is running health facilities for the local people. The landscape is even more rugged, a deep river canyon has snaked it's way down from the red cliffs, the red cliff, sand dunes hills ahead is superior outline of enormous beauty. The Gomba is in middle of the village and lower part of the village is terraced lands for cultivation, which looks like expanded peacock tail during growing season. Everywhere in the village the dung seems spread out for drying which is proposed to use as fuel.
Day 08Ghami to Tsarang (3580m): On the other side of Ghami we see the longest mani wall and some standing Chortens in front of the red wall which forms the end of the valley. According to legend the famous Bodisatwa Guru Rinpoche (Padmasambhava) had destroyed a demon, and his intestines landed the mani wall, his lungs landed the red cliffs and his heart is Lo Gekar Monastery which is the oldest monastery in Mustang.
A steady climb takes up to 3820m pass, after then a lunar-looking desert stretches to the horizon. It looks like there is no sign of vegetation or human life only barren hills are layered.
A broad road leads to Tsarang along the distinctively beautiful place; The Tsarang is second big town in upper mustang which is rich in Buddhist culture, tradition and has a big beautiful Shakya monastery. The other main landmark is the king's palace on the edge of the village close to the Monastery. But it is almost falling due to the disrepair, in the former time the king from Lo- Manthang use to descend during tremendous cold winter. But nowadays king permanently stays in Lo Manthang, thus it is almost abandoned.
Day 09 Tsarang to Lo Manthang (3700m) in 5 hours: After the breakfast the trek begins along the barren fields, chortens, and a few ancients caves. You may pass the gang of pasturing yaks, horses, Tibetans goats and sheep. Today you have to carry some energy bars on your day pack because lunch and camping will be in Lo Manthang. After a long steady climb takes you to the top of the Lo La pass 3950 meter, when you are here you feel like in Lunar not in the Earth and spying the strangest, from where a wide spreading village can be seen is Lomanthang and surrounding villages also red painted monastery.
Day 10Lomanthang Today, you take a tour around white walled city. This wall was built for a safeguard from warriors, in former time all the houses were built inside connectedly to the palace. Most of the houses are still two-storied and built by mud; there are three ancient monasteries in Lo Manthang which are really very essential to visit. And afternoon you can take horse ride to explore the Nyiphu monastery, Zhong caves and chhossar caves for ancient lives and civilization. Still you see some people are using the caves as the part of their life so this exploration is more meaningful for historical, anthropological and archaeological facts.
Day 11Lo Manthang to Dhakmar(3580m) in 6: 30 hours. Our track meanders through the wide sparse pasture land then reach into greener valley and descend to isolated settlement of Lo Gekar. The oldest monastery Ghar Gumba is situated here where the greatest Bodisatwa padmasbambhava is highly worshiped. We have to cross two little pass where a lot of Lungdar are hanging for ritual remits, Mt. Annapurna range, Dhualagiri ragne, Nilgiri and Tilicho are sending their magnetic smile to make this way more enjoyable. Afterwards, we walk up to a small pass and continue over to the lovely green valley of Dahakmar. The lodges in Dhakmar are more simply however the landscape, ancient caves in high red cliff are miracles.
Day 12Dhakmar to Samar (3600m) 6 hours. We rejoin our outward trail in Ghami village and steadily climb up to the Nyi La pass, then go down to Tama Gaun and follow the street direct to Syanboche and climb for a few hours and descend through pretty juniper forest to Samar village
Day 13Samar to Kagbeni 5hours Descending through the long rocky Chele canyon to the Kaligandaki River and following the white blanketed riverbank to Chuksang (the place for salt), Tangbe and finally the existing Mustang gate village Kagbeni.
Day 14Kagbeni to Jomosom 4hours It is windy walk to Jomsom, if you want you can go to make an excursion in Marpha village or Thini village above the Jomsom across the river or you can make a rest with hot shower, enjoy cold drink and farewell dinner in the evening with your staff.
Day 15Jomsom to Pokhara It is morning flight to pokhara, your trekking staff will drop your baggage to the airport and wave hands of bye bye, save journey and thanking for being with them, they come back-down by bus to Kathmandu.
Day 16Drive or fly to Pokhara 6 hours drive by vehicle and 30 minutes by flight
Day 17Back to home Airport departure according to your time frame