The hidden kingdom Above the tree line, the vast barren landscape of the Upper Mustang region, dotted with ancient forts, walled medieval villages and monasteries rich in Buddhist art, offers its few visitors a year a fascinating glimpse into this remote enclave of Tibetan Culture.A deliberate policy of cultural and environmental preservation has meant that Mustang remains one of the world's most special trekking destinations. Entry is limited and special trekking permits are required. 12 to 14 days should be allowed for Upper Mustang and it may also be combined with the Jomsom trek. A reasonable fitness level is required. We organise tea house trek.
At the northern most limit of Kagbeni is the police checkpoint where we take our first steps into the previously forbidden area of Upper Mustang. The trail ascends sharply to a Chorten, (Tibetan prayer wheel) from where we see beautiful views of Kagbeni with Nilgiri as a backdrop. We follow along the east bank of the Kali Gandaki, climbing and descending until we reach the sparsely vegetated plateau and the village of Tangbe, (3,100m) our lunch stop. We continue our trail to Chhuksang (3050 m) where we can see ruins of castles littering the hilltops and cave dwellings across the river. The canyon walls are eroded into spectacular organ pipe formations. Hiking hours: 6-7
We continue to follow the riverbank where we can see many caves amongst the cliff walls. A steep climb out of the valley leads us to the village of Chele. We continue our climb until we reach the Chotare Lopcha Pass (3625 m) where excellent views are to be had. We then follow the contour of the mountain to Samar (3700m) named after the red outcrop of rocks. We set up camp at this lovely village surrounded by Poplar trees and rice fields. Hiking hours: 6
From camp we descend to cross the stream before climbing to the pass, Samar La (4000 m). The trail continues to take us over the mountain tops; Daw a Lapcha Pass (3800m), Lhakpa – La (3680m) until the village of Ghiling (3510 m) is visible below. Ghiling was once an important village for the traders on route from Tibet. Hiking hours: 7
After our initial descent, the trail follows a gentle but continuous climb with increasingly beautiful views. High sandstone cliffs with numerous caves flank our east and the Mustang Himal peaks are visible stretching towards Tibet. From the Lo-Manthang Pass (3950m) we first see the village of Namgyal, and then Lo-Manthang itself, the only walled village on this route. It contains the Royal Palace of the King of Mustang and will be our base camp for the next 3 nights. Hiking hours: 5
Lo-Manthang means the “plains of prayer.” The city is a walled fortress of old times with houses tightly packed behind the walls, and a maze of narrow alleys to explore. The king’s palace, in which he still resides, is easily noticeable, as it is the largest residence in Lo-Manthang. It is also possible to visit 3 monasteries – the Chamba Lakhang which houses the massive 45 foot statue of Maitreya (the future Buddha), the Thugchen Lakhang with several large images of Sakyamuki, Avolokitsevara and Maitreya and Chodi of the Sakya Sect which has several monks in residence and offers us the chance to join in prayer and chanting. Half way to the King’s summer palace in Namgyal, is the Namgyal Monastery. It is the largest monastery in Mustang and is perched on a hillside above the village. Its massive walls are painted in scripts of grey, white and yellow. There is a large courtyard surrounded by galleries and the main hall contains a large altar with splendid statues, images and Thankas hanging from the pillars. Lo-Manthang has a post office, health post; police check post and radio communication with Jomsom and Kathamndu.
Day hike (or pony trek) to the villages of Garphu and Nyphu north of Lo-Manthang. There are some interesting cave monasteries and numerous caves with dwellings inside. On the way back, a hike up to the ruins of Ketcher Dzong is recommended for wide panoramic views of the valleys to the north and south. Hiking hours day trip: 7
We slowly we continue the trail steadily climbs to a pass (4480 m) marked, as most, by a cairn. From here we get our last glimpse of Lo-Manthang. We then follow up a desolate valley with good mountain views, passing abandoned fields and a few ruins. Our trail ascends steeply across a ridge to the high point of today’s trek at (4595 m). We then descend to the Canyon valley, cross the fast flowing stream and a quick ascent takes us to Lo Gekar where we will have lunch. After lunch we can visit the Gomba surrounded by colorful prayer wheels with snowy peaks in the distance and 2 hours further walk reach us to the Dhakmar, beautiful place to camp in a red crag. Hiking hours: 7
We provide bagpacks, crampons, and maps. Price Includes: Guide, assistants, 3 meals per day, afternoon tea & snacks, accommodation for the duration of the trek(2 persons per room).
However, during high season one room per two clients may not be always available. If this should happen we request our clients to be flexible and share a triple or room with four beds. Annapurna Park entry and TIMS fees, staff insurance, transport to and from the trailhead, two nights' accommodation pre and post the trek and can supply 75 liters backpack for the main trekking stuff, light crampons, gaiters and trekking map.
Assistant - (maximum weight to carry is 10 kg for female assistant guide and 13 kg for male assistant guide).
Doesn't include: Soft beverages, air tickets & client insurance.
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The Forbidden Kingdom of Nepal (Upper Mustang)
Difficulty level : streneous
Upper Mustang also known as mini Tibet is a good combination of nature, landscape, rich cultural heritage, a great history, ancient Buddhist monastery and Caves.
Upper Mustang is untouched by present day progress. Before 1991 this region was abundant to visit for remote explorers. Trekking in Mustang was authoritatively opened in 1992. This region gives awesome mountain view. Local people of this region was prohibited and disconnected from whatever remains of the world. In spite of it could develop its own particular unmistakable culture and customary.
Sunday to Saturday 9.00am - 6.00pm