Group Size: Min 2 to Max 8 Maximum Altitude: 3,810 m/12,500ft Trip Grade: Moderate
Total duration: 17 days Start from: Kathmandu End at: Kathmandu
Upper Mustang Trek or the Trek to the Forbidden Palace of Lo Manthang is one of the worlds most exclusive trekking trail in the restricted area of Nepal, opened for tourists only in 1992. Mustang, formerly the Kingdom of Lo is a remote and most isolated region of the Himalayas of which the central part the capital, Lo Manthang is surrounded by high stone walls. The capital of Lo Manthang was founded in 1380 AD by Ame Pal who built these high walls. After Prithvi Narayan Shah unified Nepal in 1769 to have only one ruler ruling Nepal, Lo became a dependency but kept its hereditary rulers. This arrangement continued as long as Nepal remained a kingdom, until republican government began in 2008 and Jigme Dorje Palbar Bista ( 1933–2016) lost his title of King of Lo.
The area is a barren landscape and rugged trails known as Caravan Route that was used by the people as a Salt trade route with Tibet. Cave like settlements and houses made of mud bricks give this area an antique and attractive look. People in the area follow strange social system of Polyandry since generations and still continues.
After a sightseeing day in Kathmandu, Upper Mustang Trek starts with a drive to Pokhara from where we fly to Jomsom, famous for its apples and from here we enter the restricted area to Kagbeni and onwards to Upper Mustang Salt trail. The stunning views of Annapurna, Dhaulagiri and Nilgiri and the 15th century Thugchen Monastery, mani walls, chhortens and the deepest Kali Gandaki Gorge and the well preserved mysterious culture, traditions and lifestyle of the people living in this region makes this trail worth visiting.
JOIN THE DEPARTURE DATE OF 11th MAY 2020 TO REACH LO MANTHANG FOR TIJI FESTIVALON 19th MAY 2020. IT IS CELEBRATED FOR 3 DAYS 19th, 20th and 21st.
- Trip of a lifetime in restricted area of Nepal with unique culture and lifestyle
- 11 days guided trek to the forbidden kingdom and restricted area of Lo Manthang
- Walk on the ancient Salt trade route to Tibet
- Strange culture, traditions and lifestyle of people
- Kali Gandaki, the deepest gorge in the world, the cave like settlements and the Tibetan Buddhism atmosphere
- Rainshadow and restricted area trek
- Highest Altitude in this trek is at Drakmar (3,810 m/12,500ft)
- 1 rest day at Lo Manthang (3,730 meters) to rest, explore and let your body get used to altitude
Trip Cost Includes:
- All airport pick ups and drops in tourist cars and Pokhara Kathmandu Pokhara by tourist bus.
- Pokhara-Jomsom-Pokhara Flight with airport departure taxes
- Twin sharing accommodation in Kathmandu (3 Nights)
- Twin sharing accommodation in Pokhara (2 Nights)
- Lodges and guesthouses during the trekking days (11 Nights)
- An English speaking knowledgeable trekking guide
- An English Speaking Tour Guide for Kathmandu sightseeing
- Food, accommodation, salary, insurance, equipment and medicine for staff.
- All paper work permits and restricted area special permits for trekking
- Medical Kit will be carried by Trekking Guide
- Farewell Dinner with Nepalese Cultural Dance
- All Government and Local Taxes
Trip Cost Excludes:
- Meals and drinks
- Upper Mustang Restricted Area Permit Fee
- Personal expenses (visitor photography,phone,beverages,battery recharge,bottle water,shower,excess baggage etc)
- Tips for trekking staff and drivers (Tipping is expected)
- Any cost or services not mentioned in inclusion
Day 01: Arrive Kathmandu (1300 meters)
On arrival at Tribhuvan International Airport, a representative from our office will greet you at the airport and escort you to your hotel. You’ll have rest of the day at leisure.
Overnight: in Kathmandu
Day 02: Kathmandu Sightseeing and trek preparation
Kathmandu’s Durbar Square: is one of three royal palace squares in the Kathmandu Valley. This site was the royal residence until the 19th century where important ceremonies, such as the coronation of the Nepalese monarch use to take place.
Swoyambhunath Temple: This Buddhist Stupa, said to be 2000 years old is a perfect architecture of gilded spire and white washed dome located under thousands of fluttering prayer flags. From the spire, four faces of Buddha stare out across the valley in the cardinal directions. The entire structure is symbolic.
Pashupatinath Temple: Pashupatinath, a pagoda style Hindu temple dedicated to Lord Shiva is considered to be the powerhouse of Hindu spiritual power in religious terms. Situated amidst a lush green natural setting on the bank of the sacred Bagmati River, the temple is 6 kms from Kathmandu city and just a few hundred meters from the end of the runway at Tribhuwan International Airport.
BoudhnathStupa: Listed in the UNESCO World Heritage list, this enormous stupa where thousands of pilgrims gather daily to make a ritual circumnavigation of the dome, beneath the watchful eyes of the Buddha, which gaze out from the gilded central tower. This is one of the few places in the world where Tibetan Buddhist culture is accessible and unfetered, and the lanes around the stupa are crammed with monasteries and the surrounding is a paraphernalia
Overnight: in Kathmandu
Day 03: Drive from Kathmandu to Pokhara (827m/2689ft): 5-6 hours
After a warm breakfast in the hotel we will drive along the Trishuli River to Pokhara, the city of Lakes
Overnight: in Pokhara.
Day 04: Fly to Jomsom (2,700m/8898ft) and trek to Kagbeni (2,810m/9,216ft): 3-4 hours trek
To shorten the trekking days from Pokhara to Jomsom we take an early morning domestic flight from Pokhara to Jomsom Airport. Jomsom is famous for its apples. Walking along a beautiful valley we pass through Eaklebatti Village which is located at the bank of two rivers. You can see the ruins of an old fortress here.
Overnight: in Kagbeni.
Day 05: Kagbeni to Chele (3,050m/10,004ft): 5-6 hours
At Kagbeni our trekking permits are checked and from here we start trekking alongside Kali Gadaki River. We reach the Tangbe Village that has its narrow alleyways, white-washed houses, barley and buckwheat fields, and apple orchards. Continuing our walk through another village we cross a river and a short walk over a ridge takes us to Chele.
Overnight: in Chele
Day 06: Chele to Syanbochen (3,475m/11,398ft): 6-7 hours
After breakfast we start on a difficult trek of today as we will be passing through two high passes of Taklam La pass (3,624m) and Dajori La pass (3,735). On our way, we enjoy great views of Tilicho, Yakawa Kang and Damodar Danda and pass by Ramchung Cave. After the passes, we descend on an easier trail to reach Samar Village. Walk from this village leads us to a ridge and we descend and continue trek upto Syanboche for overnight stay.
Overnight: in Syanboche
Day 07: Syanbochen to Ghami (3,520m/11,546ft): 5-6 hours
Today we walk uphill and ascend to the Yamda La pass at 3,850 meters. Passing through chhortens, tea houses, forests and barley fields we reach Nyi Pass at 4,010 meters. From here, we descend to Ghami which is one of the biggest villages in the Lo region.
Overnight: in Ghami
Day 08: Ghami to Tsarang (3,620m/11,873ft): 5-6 hours
We cross a suspension bridge over the Ghami Khola and begin our ascend for today. We cross the Tsarang La Pass at 3,870 meters and reach Tsarang village. The village lies atop the Charang Chu canyon with a huge fortress and aRed Gompa.
Overnight: in Tsarang
Day 09: Tsarang to Lo-Manthang (3,730m/12,234ft): 3-4 hours [19th May-Tiji Festival Day 1]
Today we desced to a canyon and cross a river and start uphill trek to Lo La pass which at 3,950 meters. From the the pass we have a good view of the beautiful Lo Manthang village. We then descend to Lo Manthang which is a beautiful walled village. From Lo Manthang we get good views of the Himalayas including Nilgiri, Tilicho and Annapurna I, Bhrikuti Peak as well as Damodar Kunda (Pond).
Overnight: in Lo Manthang
Day 10: Acclimatization and participate in the festival celebration [20th May-Tiji Festival Day 2]
Lo Manthang was the walled capital of the Kingdom of Lo from its founding in 1380 by Ame Pal who oversaw construction of the city wall and many of the still-standing structures. After Prithvi Narayan Shah unified Nepal in 1769, Lo became a dependency but kept its hereditary rulers. This arrangement continued as long as Nepal remained a kingdom, until republican government began in 2008 and Jigme Dorje Palbar Bista ( 1933–2016) lost his title.
Overnight: in Lo Manthang
Day 11: Lo-Mangthang to Drakmar (3810 m/12,500ft): 6-7 hours
Trekking on a different trail from Lo-Manthang, our trail passes through Gyakar village that has a beautiful Monastery with rock paintings, called Ghar Gompa
Overnight: in Drakmar
Day 12: Drakmar to Ghiling (3,806m/12,484ft): 5-6 hours
Today we descend for most part of the trekking. Our trail passes through a dry plateau and fields before reaching Ghiling. The walk can be relatively difficult as we are most likely to experience strong winds on our face. Ghiling is mostly dry, but we still get good views of Dhaulagiri and Nilgiri mountains.
Overnight: in Ghiling
Day 13: Ghiling to Chhuksang (3050m/10,004ft): 5-6 hours
Today we walk on the same trail as before going up to Lo Manthang.
Overnight: in Chhuksang
Day 14: Chhuksang to Jomsom (2,700/8,856ft): 6-7 hours
Today we trek untill we meet the Annapurna Circuit Trekking Trail. We have our lunch at Kagbeni and trek further to Jomsom.
Overnight: in Jomsom
Day 15: Fly back to Pokhara
We take an early morning flight to Pokhara. The airplane passes through a gorge between Annapurna and Dhaulagiri mountains making the flight itself an amazing experience. You will have the rest of the day on your own.
Overnight: in Pokhara
Day 16: Drive from Pokhara to Kathmandu
After breakfast, we drive to Kathmandu. We spend our last evening in Kathmandu in a farewell dinner together sharing photos recalling the excitements of trip and exchanging emails in one of the traditional Nepalese restaurant.
Overnight: Hotel in Kathmandu
Meals: Farewell Dinner
Day 17 Airport Transfer
Today after breakfast you are in leisure on your own. You will be escorted to airport for your flight home at your flight time.
You can design your own trip exactly how you like it according to your requirements, travel dates and budget.
Given below are the fixed departure dates for online booking. If the given departure dates are not suitable for you, please email us or call us at +977 9841414582 and we will happily customize your trip on the date more appropriate for you.
JOIN THE DEPARTURE DATE OF 11th MAY 2020 TO REACH LO MANTHANG FOR TIJI FESTIVAL ON 19th MAY. IT IS CELEBRATED FOR 3 DAYS 19th, 20th and 21st.
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Best Months for Upper Mustang Trek
March, April, May, June, July August September, October, November is considered the best months for this trek. Visitng Mustang during Tiji Monsoon Festival is highly recommended.
Maximum Altitude in this trek: 3,810 m/12,500ft at Drakmar
Tiji Festival Dates in 2020: 19th May, 20th May, 21st May
Your safety is our most important concern while traveling with Eve Holidays. Please note that adventure travel goes to the remote part of the mountain where weather conditions, health condition of team member, unexpected natural disasters and delay or cancellation of flights can affect the itinerary. Every effort will be made to keep to the itinerary but your leader has the authority to amend or cancel any part of the itinerary if it is deemed necessary due to safety concerns, without any pre consultation with clients. So please be prepared to be flexible if required.
In case the trip has to be cancelled due to unforeseen circumstances, you are free to choose an alternative trip such as a trek in the Everest, Langtang, or any other region, or sightseeing tours, equivalent to the same price (If trip price is more it will cost you the difference between the two trips ). If you are not interested in the alternative trip, please note that there will be no refund. So, please make sure you have an adequate travel insurance.
Nepal Tourist Visa & Visa Fee
You can obtain a visa easily upon your arrival at International Airport in Kathmandu. Please bring 2 copies of passport size photos with accurate USD for visa fee.
Weather in the mountains is difficult to predict. March, April, May, June, July August September, October, November is considered the best months for this trek. December January February is impossible to trek due to heavy snowfall and extreme cold temperatures. Visitng Mustang during Tilji Monsoon Festival is highly recommended.
Anyone who is fit and healthy and have a habit of walking for few of hours a day can do this trek. However walking in higher altitudes is more physically demanding than walking in lower altitudes. Exercising and jogging regularly for some weeks prior to the trip is a good idea to enhance your stamina. Participants with pre-existing medical conditions such as heart, lungs and blood diseases are required to consult their doctor before taking the trip. It is also advised that you inform Eve Holidays about the medical condition before booking the trek.
All of Eve Holidays trekking itineraries are planned keeping in mind the risk of Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS). Going up at higher altitude too fast causes a medical condition called AMS which is serious enough to kill if neglected. We are well aware that it is essential to allow you sufficient time for acclimatization to minimize the risk. However it is important to remember that some people are more vulnerable than others.
It is recommended that you carry a light 35-50L rucksack with your personal belongings that you may need handy such as camera, hat, glasses, gloves, sun creams, first-aid kit, toothpaste/brush, soap/ towel, and other personal items.
To keep yourself hydrated at high altitude, always remember to carry water container with at least 1 litre of water in your backpack. Around base camp you will need your down jacket. Here is the guideline of Equipment and Packing List
All our trekking guides are highly experienced, well trained and Government Licensed guides. As we focus on employing single women with the aim of helping them make a living for themselves and their children, we usually provide female trekking guides. But we provide male as well if you prefer male guide.
We use standard rooms in hotels/guesthouses in Kathmandu. Along the trekking routes, you stay in teahouses that generally provide basic clean facilities with a mattress and a quilt or blanket. Accommodation are on twin sharing basis. The accommodation in lodges in trekking routes can be single and double rooms, or a dormitory. The toilets in tea houses provide essential and basic facilities and are always outside the room. Single supplement will be provided on request and will cost an additional. Although single rooms are readily available in Kathmandu and the trekking regions at lower elevation, it might be difficult to find them at higher elevations. Hotels in Kathmandu can be upgraded to 4 star and 5 star in an additional cost. .
Except farewell dinner in Kathmandu, meals are not included in trip cost so that you have the flexibility in food choice and the budget. While on trekking, usually, each day dinner and breakfast will be at a lodge where you will stay and lunch will be on the way. We make it sure that the food is hygienic and at the same time suits your palate. Foods cooked in lodges and guesthouses on the way are pasta, tuna bakes, noodles, potatoes, eggs, daal bhat (rice and lentils), bread, soup, fresh vegetables (variety depends on the season) and even some desserts like apple pies, pancakes, and some interesting attempts at custard. You will find a lot of garlic on the menu because it assists with acclimatization. In many larger villages you may find some meat items on the menu. You can always find hot chocolate, tea, and hot lemon drinks, as well as soft drinks, and treats like chocolate and crisps.
Means of Transportation
We use tourist buses and private tourist vehicles for the trip. Pokhara to Jomsom and Jomsom to Pokhara will be in domestic flight.
Communication while trekking
There are telephones in some villages along the trekking routes from which you can make international calls. Our guides will have their local mobile phones, in case you want to make international calls or want to provide your number to your family for the call back to you. Any international calls made you can pay to the guide
One MUST have travel insurance policy to join any of Eve Holidays trips. You must be insured for comprehensive expenses that might incur due to medical issues or accidents (this includes air ambulance, helicopter rescue, and treatment costs and theft and loss) and also trip cancellation. We don't arrange or sell insurance.
The trekking will be arranged for you according to your needs. So, please contact us for your required departure date. Best Months: March to May & September to November. You can have a look at our fixed departure dates to see if that suits your plans.
Information required for this trip is provided here. If you want to consult any aspect of the trip, please feel free to email us or give us a call at +977 9841414582.
On the recommendation of one of my friend I did this trek with Eve Holidays. The trek was a very different experience than the other popular trekking trails of Nepal and I am glad I chose this trek this time. I am thankful to Maina and her team of Eve Holidays for this great experience. Their arrangements was perfect and my guide was the best one who knew the region well.