Upper Mustang

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The Upper Mustang trip is one of the most beautiful trips to undertake. It beings with arriving into Kathmandu and then to the city of Pokhara which is one of the most beautiful cities in Nepal. A short flight out of Pokhara towards Jomsom will get you into beautiful mountain landscape from where you begin your trek. The trail to the forbidden land, will be through a mix of windy river valleys, steep climbs, beautiful villages and monasteries enroute will add in more varied experience along the way. Another highlight would be on entering the walled city of Lo Manthang. As must as the landscape will captivate you, the people you will come across will make it even more worthwhile.

Upper Mustang Itinerary

Upon arrival in Kathmandu, you will be met and transferred your hotel. The drive from the airport to the hotel is around 20 minutes. After your check-in the group leader will set a time for your trek briefing to discuss in regards to the trek. The evening is free but your trek leader will organize a welcome dinner at a fine local restaurant.
Meals included: None

Day 2: DRIVE TO POKHARA (Tourist Bus Approx. 7hrs Drive)
Today after breakfast we leave for Pokhara, also known as The Lake City owing to the large number of lakes in the city. Upon our arrival in Pokhara we are rewarded with magnificent views of the Himalayas including Dhaulagiri (8,167m/26,794ft), Manaslu(8,156m/26,759ft), Machhapuchhre(6,993m/22,943ft), the five peaks of Annapurna and others. We then check-in to our hotel and take a rest. We may also stroll in the streets of Pokhara and just enjoy being in one of the most beautiful cities of Nepal.
Meals included: B

After a breathtaking morning flight for 20 minutes it is necessary to spend some time in Jomsom (administrative headquarter of Mustang District), while the trek staff sort out the loads. You will also need to relax a little and begin to acclimatize to the altitude. The trek begins by crossing the bridge north of the airstrip to the old part of Jomsom. The trail now heads north on the east bank of the wide stony Kali Gandaki. Expect for a high windy trail if walking in the afternoon. Keeping on the east side, continue past the side valley of the Panga Khola (stream) and around a bluff to the small settlement of Eklebhatti. From here another bend in the river takes you to Kagbeni and entry to the forbidden land.
Flight Time: 20 minutes
Trekking Time: Approx. 3 hours
Meals included: B, L, D

Having completed the formalities, proceed out of Kagbeni north past the mani wall and iricheck point. At last you could venture beyond the sign-forbidding tourists to pass this point, and the real adventure began. Almost immediately the path climbs quite steeply up into a jumble of gullies and small towers, zigzagging to a viewpoint over Kagbeni with Nilgiri. After a few more ups and downs the trail climbs to a plateau at 3040 m, then drops steeply into a dry riverbed. Its then a short climb to Tangbe at 3060 m. Narrow streets lead into the village of white and red coloured houses, with a few chortens and fairly extensive fields. From here the trail again climbs to a high point around 3100 m. Soon after you leave Tangbe you can see Gompa Kang and some caves on the west bank of the river. About one hour beyond Tangbe you will reach Chhusang village at the confluence of the Narsing Khola and the Kali Gandaki at 2980 m. This village consists of three clumps of whitewashed stone houses and narrow alleyways. The Gompa lies above the southernmost settlement and there are some broken castle walls on the surrounding cliffs.
Trekking Time: Approx. 5 hours
Meals included: B, L, D

Day 5: TREK TO SAMAR (3620M)
Crossing the stony floor of the Narsing Khola, one of the major side canyons on the route, the village of Tetang (also known as Te), is visible to the east. The trail passes below another fort and village with red and white striped cliffs of amazing eroded pipes, chimneys and gullies in glooming yellow, gold, orange and red colors. After a short walk along the riverbed, there is a solid bridge across the Kali Gandaki at the point where it tunnels its way under a vast block of red sandstone. It is here now the trek leaves the Kali Gandaki valley and climbs steeply up a rocky gully to Chele at 3100 m. Immediately on leaving Chele, the path climbs steeply up to a plateau region through a small tunnel like gully. Climbing more gradually, the village of Ghyakar appears to the west as the path rounds a corner. A tremendous canyon opens out between the trail and the village, surrounded by patchwork fields of rich red buckwheat. The climb continues – a long, the steep, treeless, waterless slog – switch backing up the side of a spectacular steep canyon, then traversing to a cairn marking the Chele La at 3630 m. After crossing the ridge the trail enters a large side valley and makes a long descent to Samar, surrounded by a grove of poplar trees at 3620 m.
Trekking Time: Approx. 4 hours
Meals included: B, L, D

The path leaves Samar near a large chorten and dives steeply for about 70 m into a deep side of canyon. The trail goes into another valley filled with stumps of juniper trees that have been harvested for firewood, crosses a stream and climbs up to the Bhena La 3830 m and drops gently to small settlement Bhena 3860 m. The route skirts a gorge, crosses a stream and climbs slightly to Yamdo. You have to yet climb another pass, the Yamdo La 4010 m, and descend steeply and then following a ridge to Shyangmochen at 3800 m. Its a short gentle climb to the Shyangmochen La at 3850 m where the trail enters another huge east-west valley. Descending past a large painted square chorten and then descend to the picturesque village of Gheling with its poplar trees and extensive fields of barley at 3570 m.
Trekking Time: Approx. 5 hours
Meals included: B, L, D

Day 7: TREK TO CHARANG (3560M)
The trail from here turns westward and climbs gently through fields up the center of the valley, passing below Tama village and its imposing chorten. Turning north, it rejoins the direct trail and becomes an unrelenting climb across the head of the valley to the Nyi La at 4020 m. The descent from the pass is gentle for about 45 minutes to the Ghami La, a cairn on a ridge top about 45 minutes below pass. The trail then drops steeply to Ghami at 3510 m., which is a large village of whitewashed houses and surrounded by a large area of fields. The Charang trail descends below the blue, grey and red cliffs across the valley to a steel bridge across the Tangmar Chu, then climb past the most spectacular stretch of mani (Buddhist prayer) wall. Beyond Mani wall the route climbs a rocky gully, then traverses to the Choya La at 3870 m. Once over the pass the route makes a long gentle descent to Charang at 3560 m. The village is a maze of fields, willow trees and houses separated by stonewall at the top of the large Charang Chu canyon. The huge five storey white Dzong (fortress) and red gompa are perched on the edge of the Kali Gandaki gorge at the eastern end of the village.
Trekking Time: Approx. 6 hours
Meals included: B, L, D

Day 8: TREK TO LO - MANTHANG (3840M)
The trail leaves Charang to the northwest and once clears of the village drops steeply into Charang Chu canyon. After crossing the river the route is initially very steep up a stony track. As you round the corner and head north, a fine view unfolds to the south, with Charang on the edge of the cliff in the foreground and the great white caped Himalayan giants of Nilgiri, Tilicho and Annapurna I behind. Brikuti peak is visible to the Southeast. The trail climbs gently along the west side valley to a chorten at 3620 m, about 2 hours from Charang. A further hour takes you to 3700 m with some spectacular caves high up in the cliffs to the east. The path crosses a stream and heads north. The trail now heads across an open region, always climbing gently beside a cliff. Having climbed around 3850 m, a pass is reached and through a narrow window at the summit the view ahead opens out to display the western valley of Lo Manthang.

Just down from the pass is the first dramatic view of the walled city of Lo Manthang and the ancient ruined forts on the hills behind. There is a tremendous view to the east of the red, blue-grey, white and yellow eroded Mustang Khola canyon, to the north lies the flattish red coloured hills and the Tibetan border and the western view is dominated by the snow-capped peak of Manaslu. The descent to Lo Manthang is short and after crossing the small river and climbing briefly the fabled city is finally reached.
Trekking Time: Approx. 4 hours
Meals included: B, L, D

A full day exploration and excursion in the walled city of Lo Manthang. Half-day horseback excursion to the caves and monasteries. And after lunch you walk around to explore more of it including visiting the palace of the raja (king).
Meals included: B, L, D

Day 10: TREK TO GHAMI (3510M)
The trail descends to a stream and makes a short climb to the large village of whitewashed houses surrounded by hectares and hectares of fields of Ghami at 3510m.
Trekking Time: Approx. 6 & half hours
Meals included: B, L, D

Day 11: TREK TO SAMAR (3620M)
Today retrace the upward trail and descend through Chele to the Kali Gandaki and trek downstream of Samar.
Trekking Time: Approx. 6 hours
Meals included: B, L, D

Day 12: TREK TO KAGBENI (2800M)
Trek back to Kagbeni before your permit expires. The town itself is unique, also known as gateway to “Forbidden Land” where we stop for lunch. The mud packed houses, prayer wheels, narrow, stone streets, covered alleyway, chortens and old brick-hued gompa dominating the village and guarding the river intersections are reminiscent of old Mustang.
Trekking Time: Approx. 4 hours
Meals included: B, L, D

We retrace our steps through a barren, almost moon-like landscape dotted with patches of green cultivation. Man-made canals cut across the terrain, irrigating the crops and fruit trees. We lunch at Eklebhatti. Heading south, the wide, windswept valley floor has little fertile land, which means a hard existence for the inhabitants of the Upper Kali Gandaki. After a few hours following the valley downstream we arrive back at Jomsom, dusty and wind-swept towns where we spend the night in a lodge to await our flight back to Pokhara the following morning.
Trekking Time: Approx. 4 hours
Meals included: B, L, D

Day 14: FLY TO POKHARA (850M)
In the early morning we take a spectacular flight back to Pokhara and should arrive sometime in the mid-morning. Our hotel is located close to the lakeside. After a welcome shower, we have the rest of the day free to relax or do some exploring.
Flight Time: 20 minutes
Meals included: B

After breakfast we drive back to Kathmandu to our starting hotel. The rest of the day is free to do shopping or further sightseeing. Our final night in Kathmandu gives us a chance to go out on the town and enjoy a final dinner (optional) with our travelling companions and newfound friends.

Our trip ends today after breakfast. Your leader will be on hand to advise and assist with your onward travel arrangements (flight details to be advised).

  • All arrival and departure transfer.
  • 2 nights in Kathmandu and 2 nights in Pokhara on Twin sharing basis on BB.
  • Standard guest house/lodges in mountain.
  • All accommodation and meals during the trek.
  • Domestic flights and airport departure taxes.
  • An experienced English-speaking trek leader (trekking guide) assistant guide also known as Sherpa, porters to carry luggage (2 trekkers: 1 porter).
  • Down jacket, four seasonal sleeping bag, duffel bag and trekking map (down jacket and sleeping bag, cotton liner are to be returned after trip completion).
  • A comprehensive medical kit, with medical oxygen on high altitude trips and PAC BAG (Portable Altitude Chamber).
  • All necessary paper work and permits (National park permit, TIMS and insurance of the staff).
  • International airfare to and from Kathmandu.
  • Excess baggage charges.
  • Extra night accommodations in Kathmandu because of early arrival, late departure or early return from the mountain (due to any reason) than the scheduled itinerary.
  • Lunch and evening meals in Kathmandu and Pokhara (and also in the case you return early from the mountain than the scheduled itinerary).
  • Travel and rescue insurance.
  • Personal expenses (phone calls, laundry, bar bills, battery recharge, extra porters, bottle or boiled water, shower etc.).
  • Tips for guides and porters.