This trekking is a rare chance to get involved and see the remote but diverse landscapes of Nepal. The region is graced by crystal-clear views of Nilgiri and Dhaulagiri peaks. The religion they follow is Buddhism, that dictates they lifestyle and traditions. A trek to the upper regions of Mustang is a journey into a land that time seemed to have forgotten. Each morning the loud bell at one of the monasteries gong for a wake-up call. The brown cliffs and barren landscapes of the entire valley will remind you of a desert, but it is in fact a rain shadow of the majestic Himalayan Range. Here, life is at close adherence to nature – with very little involvement of modernity or mechanization. A culture and lifestyle that has sustained for hundreds of years at this location, is a sight to behold.
This is a less-crowded trekking route preferred for pristine environment, immersive experience, and appreciation of natural diversity. It is important to note that this area has lots and lots of mysterious looking caves at various locations in the cliffs. Villagers take it as a sign of beginning their daily chores, mostly religious ones, before engaging in other duties such as cooking or foraging. The incredible windswept barren landscapes in villages that you see here, is indeed a testament to the amazing diversity of nature.
Sharing borders with Tibet, the culture might seem somewhat similar.
Day 1:ARRIVAL IN KATHMANDU AND TRANSFER TO HOTEL (1365M)
Upon landing at Kathmandu International Airport, our staff will pick you up and transfer you to your hotel. Spend the rest of the day at leisure, and in the evening join us for a typical Nepalese dinner. Stay overnight in a hotel.
Day 2:DRIVE OR FLY TO POKHARA (875M) 6/7H DRIVE
If you choose to drive to Pokhara, you will be taking a scenic route along Trishuli River. The drive will take around seven hours through winding hilly roads. However, if you choose to fly to Pokhara, it takes a little under an hour. Enjoy the rest of the day around lake Phewa.
Day 3:FLY FROM POKHARA TO JOMSOM AND TREK TO KAGBENI
The program begins today when you will board a flight to Jomsom from Pokhara. The flight is an exciting experience as the aircraft flies across the sky with beautiful views of Annapurna and Dhaulagiri Ranges. After reaching Jomsom, the trek officially begins – with a short trek to Kagbeni. This is the gateway to Upper Mustang – at an altitude of 2,800m. Stay overnight into a guesthouse.
Day 4:TREK FROM KAGBENI TO CHELE (3050M) 5/6H TREK
The route ascends towards the east bank of the Kali-Gandaki River. A couple of hours later you will reach Tangbe village. It is a combination of narrow alleys with white houses, barley and buckwheat fields, and some apple orchards. Mt. Nilgiri that dominates the southern skyline of Kagbeni, will offer a majestic view en route today. From Tangbe, a couple of hours of trek will bring you to Chhusang. Leaving behind Kali Gandaki Valley, do a steep climb up a rocky gully to arrive at Chele for the night.
Day 5:TREK FROM CHELE TO GHELING (3570M) 6/7H TREK
The trail now becomes more steep, but offers some of the beautiful views along the way – marked by barren landscape, bare-naked hills, and rugged terrain – combined with an enchanting ambience of Mustang and the nearby areas. The Annapurna mountain range is visible far in the southern direction. Trek up village of Samar and descend to Syangboche. Later on, arrive at the village of Gheling for the night stay.
Day 6:TREK FROM GHELING TO DHAKMAR (3820M) 5/6H TREK
After breakfast, we will start our trek with a climb up to Nyila. From here we need to descend below the blue, gray, and red cliffs to a place called Ghaami – the biggest village of Upper Mustang. Continuing the trek through colorful cliffs and greenery, we arrive at Dhakmar after around 5 hours trek. Stay overnight at a lodge.
Day 7:TREK FROM DHAKMAR TO DHAR GOMPA TO TSARANG
Today we will be trekking to Tsarang. Leaving behind Dhakmar, we will first cross Mui-La Pass at 4,170 meters. Then we will come to the oldest monastery of Nepal – the Ghar Gompa. Later, we will arrive at Tsarang Khola and follow the river up to Tsarang where we’ll stay for the night.
Day 8:TREK FROM TSARANG TO LO-MANTHANG (3815M) 4/5H TREK
The trek to Lo-Manthang is about passing through two villages on the way. The route is a gentle ascend and descend with a bit of climbing along the way before we arrive at Lo-Manthang. This walled city is considered as the Kingdom of Upper Mustang. Here, we will be staying at a guesthouse tonight.
Day 9:TREK FROM LO-MANTHANG TO CHHOSER CAVES AND BACK TO LO-MANTHANG
Today it is a kind of stay at Lo-Manthang, but with an opportunity to visit the nearby Chhoser Caves. We will be riding a horse and carry self-packed lunch. Chhoser is a mysterious cave by all means; it looks like a cliff but inside it there are floors with more than forty rooms. This alien-looking place is by far the most memorable point of this trek. Later, return to Lo-manthang for the overnight stay.
Day 10:TREK FROM LO-MANTHANG TO YARA (3550M) 5/6H TREK
Day 11:TREK FROM YARA TO LURI GOMPA AND BACK TO YARA (3850M)
The trek today is around six hours. First we will descend to Luri Gompa, a 13th century monastery that still preserves historical text and sacred scribbles. After a break here we will arrive at the Duyung Basin, formed by a river running down from the pilgrimage site of Damodar Kunda. This area is lined by ammonite fossils indicating the presence of an ancient lake or a sea-bed. Later trek back to Yara and stay overnight in a lodge
Day 12:TREK FROM YARA TO TANGE (3340M) 6/7H TREK
After breakfast, leave Yara to arrive at Dhecheng River. Cross it, and trek to the villa of Dhi through a desert-looking landscape. Take plenty of breaks along the route and enjoy the rain-shadow – a desert just in the front of the might Himalayan peaks! Later, arrive at the village of Tange. This beautiful and quiet village is ideal for some idle time. So sit back and relax with soothing winds and the quiet mountain landscape. Stay overnight here.
Day 13:TREK FROM TANGE TO CHUSANG (2985M) 8/9H TREK
It’s a long day of trek today, with over eight hours of walking. First up, we will come at Yak Khola, a river that is used for resting and bathing the yaks. From there we will climb up a terraced hill and enjoy the wonderful views of Damodar and Saribung peaks. Walk further, eat the packed lunch, and then continue on the journey. The trail begins to descend for a couple of hours up to the village of Chusang. This is where we will stay tonight.
Day 14:TREK FROM CHUSANG TO MUKTINATH (3760M) 6/7H TREK
Day 15:TREK FROM MUKTINATH TO JOMSOM (2720M) 5/6H TREK
Leaving behind the pilgrimage site of Muktinath, we begin immediately after breakfast. Today we will be reaching the windy village of Jomsom past Kagbeni. It used to be a trading town when business was flourishing between Tibet and Nepal in the middle ages. Today, it is a quiet village at the foot of the mountains. Once here, you can visit the Ecological Museum frequented by trekkers. Enjoy your stay at Jomsom tonight in the vicinity of the mountains before heading back to Pokhara tomorrow.
Day 16: FLY FROM JOMSOM TO POKHARA 18M FLIGHT
Catch an early-morning flight from Jomsom as later in the day flights are not operated due to high winds. It can get so windy in Jomsom that the locals have stories about flying boulders and sweeping stones! In Pokhara, you can enjoy the rest of day sipping beer by the lake or, if you feel like it, resting in the hotel room. In the evening though, do not miss the “Thakali” daal-bhaat in Pokhara.
Day 17: DRIVE OR FLY FROM POKHARA TO KATHMANDU (6/7H DRIVE
Depending upon the schedule, you can drive or fly to Kathmandu from Pokhara. Once you are in the capital, have a free day enjoying shopping, hot-water bathing, relaxing in a sauna, or simply seeing around town. In the evening, you are invited to join us for a farewell dinner.
Day 18:DEPARTURE TRANSFER
According to your schedule, we will take you to the airport for your flight ahead.