The Upper Mustang Trek takes hikers into the otherworldly landscapes of the Mustang region. Located in the rural part of western Nepal, the environment is similar to Tibet’s. It is an arid land, though full of beautiful, blossoming mountain flowers. The Kaligandaki River brings life to the area. You will find great pleasure in hiking on this unique trail. The former Lo Kingdom seems to be undisturbed by the passing of time. You will be blown away by the mysterious caves, suspended several dozen meters high into the side of a cliff. Equally spectacular is the Tibetan culture found in the area. You will find the people to be most kind and inviting. The Upper Mustang area, which used to be a yak caravan route to trade with Tibet, was opened to foreigners in 1992.
We begin our trek in Jomsom, the headquarters of the Mustang region, after a short, scenic flight from Pokhara. We climb along the Kaligandaki River until we reach Lo-Manthang, the main attraction of the Upper Mustang Trek and the former capital of the Lo Kingdom. A long stone wall surrounds the city. Within the walls, colorful ancient monasteries and palaces exist to this day. We will take two days to rest to explore the many fascinations around Lo-Manthang. Local people are influenced by Tibetan Buddhism, and there are plenty of stupas, Mani walls shorten, and old monasteries. The locals celebrate various festivals, so be mindful of when you book your trip and add another level of entertainment to your trekking experience. Tiji festival is one of the charming festivals in the Upper Mustang. It is a ritual celebration to pray for peace to prevail over evil. After the exploration in Lo-Manthang, we trek back down, stopping at Muktinath on the way. Muktinath Temple is a famous Hindu and Buddhist pilgrimage destination. After, we head down to Jomsom and fly to Pokhara. Come check out this incredible trek in the Upper Mustang region! Neither cultural fascinations nor natural wonders are found anywhere else in the world. From mysterious caves to snow-capped peaks to pockets of a brilliant green oasis, the Upper Mustang Trek will leave you with your jaw dropped and your eyes wide open towards the unbelievable landscapes.
The Upper Mustang Trek is unique in that it is suitable for trekking throughout the year. Most of the trail lies within the rain show, so it is perfect for monsoon season. The roads may cause problems, which is why we choose to fly from Pokhara to Jomsom in our itinerary. The Upper Mustang Trek requires fitness and acclimatization to avoid acute mountain sickness. Upper Mustang is technically a ‘prohibited area’, meaning that trekkers need a special permit to enter. Shikhar Adventure arranges the trek with complete management. Please, feel free to contact us for more detailed information.
A representative from Shikhar Adventure will welcome you our hotel. We will prepare you with information and gear for your trek.
After breakfast, we’ll brief you on our upcoming adventure and then go on a sightseeing tour around Kathmandu, including several UNESCO World Heritage sites. You can spend the rest of the day freely or preparing for your upcoming trek.
We drive about a 6-7 hrs on the Prithvi Highway to the scenic lakeside city of Pokhara. The scenery along with drive, characterized by terraced rice fields and rolling hillsbuilds our anticipation for the trek. Pokhara is a relaxing town, surrounded by nature’s beauty. Overnight at hotel.
The exciting 20-minuteflight leadsus to Jomsom - the district headquarters of the Mustang region, linking Nepal to Tibet through an ancient salt trade route. The flight offers the views of Dhaulagiri and Annapurna ranges. We will move along the Kaligandaki River, continuing on the trailwhich allows panoramic views of Nilgiri, Dhaulagiri, Dhampus and Tukuche.Then,we descend to Kagbeni, a Tibetan village located at the edge of two rivers. Overnight at guest house.
The trail proceeds further along the eastern edge of Kaligandaki River and climbs uphill towards Tangbe Village. Following the tapered alleys amidst the houses and fields of apples and wheat, we will arrive at the beautiful Chhusang Village. Later, we will cross the Kaligandaki River on a steel footbridge and climb the hill again to the village of Tsele, located on a ridge above the gorge. Overnight at guest house.
The trail follows the hilly and arid landscape before leading down the hill. We climb the Taklam La Pass (3624m), giving us panoramic views of Tilicho Peak and Damodar Danda. Later, the route spirals downward, passing chhortens to Samar Village. Here, the trail drops further to a large ravine. Another 3 hours of walking, we reach Ramchung Cave, near to Syangbochen. Overnight at guest house.
Today’s journey proceeds through Tibetan styled houses and Buddhist monuments all the way to the Yamda La. Taking our time to praise the scenic beauties the trail offers, we move slowly through the fields of barley to climb the Nyi Pass (4010m), the second pass for the day. The steep descent from Nyi Pass will take us to Ghami, nestled in the rugged mountains. Wecross the Ghami River and soon reachTsarang Village (3540m) which sits at the top of Tsarang Chu Canyon and is inhabited mostly by Lhobas - the natives of the area. Overnight at guest house in Tsarang.
After a gentle drop from Tsarang, we cross the Tsarang-Chu and climb uphill through the rocky path with views of Nilgiri, Tilicho, Annapurna I and Bhrikiuti Peaks. Later, we will move up and down the hill to another plateau and reach Lo-Manthang. Overnight at guest house.
Today we take a well-deserved rest and exploration day. This allows us to be re-energized for the trail ahead. We explore around Lo- Manthang which includes visit into the western valley of Tingkhar, where the summer palace of the Raja exists. The place offers majestic views of Kimling, Phuwa and the Namgyal Gompa, which we visit later. Overnight in guest house.
After breakfast, we head out to visit the mysterious Chhoser Caves. These fascinating caves were built hundreds of years ago, storeys high into the face of a cliff. Their exact uses are still debated by archaeologists, but it is known that they have been places of meditation and some have been converted into monasteries. This is an awesome and unforgettable day on our trek. Overnight in guest house.
Following the route that passes near Gyokar Gompa, we ascend over a ridge across a valley to arrive to a meadow. Gyokar Gompa is famous for its rock painting that is believed to be more than 1200 years old. We have a gentle drop and continue along the eroded path beforearriving to Drakmar. Overnight in guest house.
Because you already know the trail, you can spend all your time taking in any views you might have missed on the first time around. Overnight in guest house.
We continue retracing our steps, heading south. We have an early start today to visit the Chungsi Cave Monastery, where the Saint Padmasamvaba meditated around 7th century. Enjoy the spectacular views of Nilgiri beyond the wide stretch of the Kaligandaki River. Overnight at guest house.
Today is a most memorable day on our trek. We reach Muktinath, a village high in the hills. Immediately surrounding us is the unique, arid landscape of the Mustang region, while behind that, we are enveloped by a chain of Himalayas. We’ll check out Muktinath temple, a truly special place where people from all over India and Nepal come to visit. Overnight at guest house.
A full day of descending, hugging the Kaligandaki River, brings us back to Jomsom. We trek through several charming villages. We can stop at Marpha and have some apple pie, apples, or even apple brandy and head back to Jomsom if there’s time. Overnight at guest house in Jomsom.
The 20-minute flight from Jomsom Airport through the cleft between Annapurna and Dhaulagiri will take us to Pokhara. There will be enough time to spare to unlock the mysteries of Pokhara. In the evening, we will stay overnight at one of the hotels in lakeside.
From Pokhara, we drive the 6 or 7 hours back to Kathmandu via the Prithvi Highway. Upon reaching Kathmandu, we take you to your hotel. Take a rest and spend your day freely. Overnight at hotel.
Transfer to Tribhuvan Airport. Thank you for choosing Shikhar Adventure as your trekking guide! We look forward to your next adventure with us.
Shikhar Adventure is not responsible for any problems due to weather, damages of property, etc. However, we will help you manage your inconveniences to the best of our abilities. Transportation to and from Pokhara can be delayed due to weather conditions and delays may last up to several days. It is best to book flights to and from Kathmandu with a several day margin to avoid missing a flight back to your home country. If flights go smoothly, we will help arrange activities for you during your margin days. If you have a tight schedule and the roads out of Pokhara are delayed, it is possible to take a flight back to Kathmandu for an additional cost.