Highlights

  • Reach the ancient kingdom of Lo Manthang and visit various historical places
  • Breathtaking views of mountains like Dhaulagiri, Nilgiri, Tilicho and Annapurna I
  • Learn about the Tibetan Buddhism culture, the rare Bon religion and ethnic people known as Lo Pa
  • Explore several caves dwellings, and houses partially built in caves
  • Explore famous places like Kathmandu, Pokhara, Jomsom, Kagbeni, Lo Manthang, etc.
  • A 25-minute scenic flight over the Himalayas from Pokhara to Jomsom
  • View the majestic Kaligandaki Gorge, the deepest gorge in the world
  • Stay at beautiful villages in rugged terrain near chhortens, gompas and monasteries
  • See the beauty of Annapurna Conservation Area and Restricted Area of Upper Mustang
  • Walk past rhododendron, oak and pine forests with an opportunity to see various exotic animals
  • Cross several mountain passes which are also amazing viewpoints
  • Visit UNESCO world heritage sites like Durbar Squares, temples and stupas

About Upper Mustang Trek

The Upper Mustang Trek is considered one of the best treks in Nepal because of the landscape, weather, tradition and more, which are completely unique to this region. This mildly difficult trek with several ascent and descent takes you to some of the most beautiful villages like Kagbeni, Chele, Syanboche, Ghami, Charang, and finally to Lo Manthang. These villages are surrounded by more than 35 mountains over 6000 meters, always ready to leave you awe-inspired. Lo Manthang is a walled ancient kingdom bound to make you feel like you travelled some hundreds of years into the past. This village is famous for the palace of the former king and outstanding views one can get from there. Several ancient sky caves (yes, sky caves) can also be seen. 

Walking past rivers, streams, monasteries, chortens, forests, beautiful antique houses and caves you will finally complete this trek. Upper Mustang Trek takes you to the highest altitude of just 3800 meters in the village of Drakmar. This also makes this trek a moderately difficult one.

Some terrain in the Upper Mustang region makes you feel like trekking in Tibet due to it being a part of the Tibetan plateau. Hiking on the trail is also an amazing chance to observe the unique culture and traditions of people living in Upper Mustang. Some splendid views of snow-peaked mountains of Annapurna and Dhaulagiri ranges can be seen during this trek. For the Upper Mustang Trek, the Annapurna Conservation Area Project (ACAP) and Restricted Area Trek permits are both required.

 

Trekking Route

You take a plane flight from Pokhara to Jomsom from where the trekking starts. You will trek to Chele and Syangboche. The next day, you will reach Ghami crossing the Yamda La, Nyi La and Ghemi La pass. You will then cross Tsarang La Pass to reach Charang. Next day, you will reach Lo Manthang where you spend another day to explore the village and also as a part of acclimatization.

From Lo Manthang, you will trek further to Drakmar, Ghling, Chhuksang and finally to Jomsom. You will fly to Pokhara and finally to Kathmandu from there.
 

Weather and Best Time to Trek

Upper Mustang lies in the rain-shadow area so you can trek to this region in the summer (monsoon) season as there is little to no rainfall. In fact, some places of this region look so heavenly with the monsoon alpine flowers blooming. The average temperature of the region is about 10-degree celsius. However, it can get as low as -15 °C  in winter making it almost impossible to trek.

All the major festivals, cultural programs are held in summer in this region. So trekking in summer provides you a great opportunity to explore the culture and lifestyle of local people. If you can endure the cold temperature, you can trek in other seasons as well.
 

Difficulty

The Upper Mustang Trek falls in Moderate Plus grading. You have to trek on terrains of high altitude regions. The trail might get difficult and steep in some places. You have to walk for 5-6 hours a day in barren rocky terrains. So, you need to be physically and mentally fit to do this trek.

Suggested Preparation:

  • We highly recommend you to be involved in 45 minutes of cardio exercises (running, swimming, jogging, cycling) 3 - 4 times a week for a minimum of 3 weeks before your scheduled trip.
  • If you are coming for trekking in Himalaya you should consider stair climbing for a week for three months prior to departure. 
     

 Food and Accommodation

Trekking in the remote area of Upper Mustang is also a chance to live a simple life away from worldly pleasures in the lap of the Himalayas. It is an experience in itself staying at tea houses providing minimalistic food like soup, noodles, pasta, potatoes, vegetables, dal bhat, fried rice, eggs, etc. and simple accommodation. Three meals are provided in a day. During this stay, the way of life and tradition of locals can also be observed. 

Itinerary

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You will arrive in Nepal as you land at Tribhuvan International Airport. You will see that our representative is already there to pick you. You will then be taken to the hotel where you can rest or freshen up. Now, you can go out and spend some time in restaurants trying a new food or just stroll around the city. You can also go to bars, spas, etc. or get a massage. You will stay overnight at the hotel in Thamel.

Waking up your first morning in Nepal, you will have your breakfast and head to view important cultural and religious sites in Kathmandu. Our tour guide will take you to all of the UNESCO world heritage sites; Basantapur Durbar Square, Patan Durbar Square, Swayambhunath Stupa, Boudhanath Stupa, Pashupatinath Temple. You will also get to listen to the myths and stories related to all those sites. You will go to other historical places as well. Returning, you can also buy the equipment or gears you may have missed. You will have a tour briefing and then you can go out to have some food and chill around.

You will leave Kathmandu as you take a bus to Pokhara. This ride can take from 6 to 7 hours during which you will get to view beautiful landscapes, rivers, green forests, etc. Reaching Pokhara, you will check into a hotel and rest for a while. After you relieve your fatigue, you will go out to explore this lake city. You can visit lakes, temples and caves like Mahendra cave and Bat cave. If you have time, you can go to Sarangkot to view the sunset. In the evening, you can enjoy places like restaurants, live music, bars etc. You will stay overnight at the same hotel.

During this 25 minutes flight from Pokhara to Jomsom, you will get outstanding views of mountains of Nilgiri and Dhaulagiri range. After landing, you will walk easy and almost flat path along the Kali Gandaki river for about 4 hours to reach Kagbeni. After reaching, you will get views of beautiful fields of wheat and barley and peaks like Dhaulagiri, Tukuche, Nilgiri, etc. To go beyond Kagbeni, you will need a permit for restricted area of Upper Mustang. You will stay overnight here.

When you leave Kagbeni and move ahead, you will enter the restricted area of Upper Mustang. Your path will be a riverbank with some caves and a Gompa. You will first reach a village, Tangbe. You will continue your trek after your lunch to get amazing views of Buckwheat and Barley fields. Then, you will reach another village, Chusang. You will cross the Kali Gandaki river and climb a steep uphill to get to Chele after almost 6 hours of trek. You will have your dinner and stay at a tea house in Chele.

Climb a steep uphill alongside a canyon. First, you will reach Eklebhatti and rest for a while. Then, you will continue your ascent to get to the top of Taklam Pass. From there you can get amazing views of Tilicho and Damodar peaks. Walking downhill on an easy and beautiful path, you will get to Samar. You will again ascend and then descend into a gorge and reach a valley. You will then cross a stream and after another subsequent ascent and descent, reach Syangboche. You will stay there overnight.

You will ascend for a while and get to a valley. From there you will descend to Ghiling. You can see green fields of barley and you will move towards Ghami by climbing gently to a valley. You will again ascend across the valley to get to the Nyi La. You will descend for about 2 hours and walk towards the left trail to get to Ghami. You can see many sky caves from Ghami, you can go to one of those if time permits.

You will leave Ghami and descend through a rocky trail. You will cross the Ghami Khola over a suspension bridge and walk through probably the driest part of the Mustang. But the views you will get will be astounding as you can see mountains in East and West and beautiful villages in the North. You will walk uphill to cross the Tsarang La Pass and reach Charang (Tsarang ) village which lies on the top of Charang Chu canyon. You will stay there at a tea house.

You will wake up and have your breakfast and explore the village. You will go to the Gompa and 700 years old palace. Leaving Charang, you will walk a gentle uphill towards the boundary between Charang and Lo Pass. You will get a spectacular view of Annapurna I and other mountains from the pass. Continuing your trek, you will find that the trail broadens and reaching the top of Lo Pass, you will see the beautiful village Lo Manthang. You will then descend to get to the village. You will stay overnight in Lo Manthang.

As you are crossing another high altitude, you will spend this day acclimatizing. Today you will spend yet another day at Lo Manthang. You will walk around the village exploring several gompas like Jhampa, Thupchen and Chhoeda. If you want, you can also walk up to the village of Tingkhar or you can just stroll around the village to visit some other monasteries. Amazing places around this village also includes the palace of the former king of Lo Manthang, you may go there too. You can buy some souvenirs and rest.

Today you will return from Lo Manthang taking a different route. You will wake up and start your trek early. Walking a crisscrossed trail to get to a ridge and ascending, you will reach Marang La Pass. Then you will reach Ghar Gompa also known as Lo Gyakar. This gompa is known for its beautiful and ancient rock paintings and it is also believed to fulfil your wishes made inside it. After a few hours of trek, you will reach Drakmar.

Today we will walk towards Ghiling and we will join the same route we took earlier after getting to Ghami. Ghiling is surrounded by barren land and is prone to strong winds. Waking up early, we start our trek by descending towards Ghami. Our trek is almost descent and enjoying the outstanding views of Dhaulagiri and Nilgiri, we walk past fields and plateau to reach Ghiling. In the evening, you can roam around the village and stay at a teahouse overnight.

Returning the same route, you will head towards Chhuksang. The altitude drops gradually as you walk and will make your trek easier. You will walk past the same villages you stayed in while you trekked upwards and continue to walk towards Chhuksang. The views of the Himalayas will be better here than your previous day’s. After a total of 3-4 hours of trek, you will reach your destination. This will be the last day you will spend in the restricted area of Upper Mustang.

Today is the last day of your trek in the Mustang region. You will first reach Kagbeni and have your lunch and report your exit from the Upper Mustang restricted area. After walking for about 7 hours, you will reach Jomsom. Jomsom is a village cut in two halves by Kali Gandaki gorge, you can go to view the majestic gorge which is the deepest in the world. You will stay overnight in Jomsom.

During your 20 minutes flight from Jomsom to Pokhara, you can enjoy the scenic aerial landscapes. After reaching Pokhara, you will find that you are away from the desert-like terrain and have come into a busy city. You can find green trees, lakes and temples around you. You can also find several restaurants, bars and spas where you can go to erase the fatigue from your trek. You can go sightseeing to places like Mahendra cave, Bat cave, Begnas lake, Phewa lake, Tal Barahi Temple, etc. if you didn’t have time the first time you stayed here.

Waking up and having breakfast in Pokhara, you will take a bus ride to Kathmandu. After this 6-7 hours of ride, you will reach Kathmandu. You can go shopping for souvenirs to take back home. Sublime Trails will have prepared a farewell dinner for you where you can have cultural dishes and enjoy dances. You can either go out for other fun activities or just rest and prepare for your departure.

Today, you will either return home or move to your next destination. If you are planning to stay a few more days in Nepal then we will be more than happy to help you. Else, we bid you farewell and wish you luck. After you’ve managed all your documents and packed your bags, we take you to the airport and wish you goodbye. 

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What's included

  • Meals: 
    16 Breakfasts, 11 Lunches, 11 Dinners
  • Accommodation: 
    3-Star accommodation in Kathmandu for 3 days 
    3-Star accommodation in Pokhara for 2 days 
  • Tea house accommodation along the way for 11 days
  • Transportation:   
    All land transportation with pickups and drops
    Domestic Flight to Jomsom from Pokhara and back
  • Guides and Porters:
    One guide and assistant guide between 6 people 
    1 porter for two people (A porter can carry up to 30 kg)
  • Entry Fees and Permits:
    Restricted Area Permit Fee
    TIMS Card
    Monument Entrance Fee
  • Miscellaneous: 
    Down jacket, a Sleeping bag which should be refunded to the company after the trip
    Necessary paperwork with the government of Nepal and Tax department
    All the necessary insurance for the guides and porters
    First Aid service in case of minor injuries
    Salary, food, and accommodation for guides and porters
  • One Day Sightseeing Tour in Kathmandu
  • Any meals other than breakfast in Kathmandu
  • Rescue & travel insurance, trip cancellation costs, accident or health emergency, evacuation, loss, theft or damage to baggage and personal effects (We strongly advise you to take out personal travel insurance.)
  • Extra night accommodation in Kathmandu due to any reason
  • Personal expenses (phone calls, internet, laundry, bar bills, battery recharge, extra porters, cold drinks, bottled or boiled water, hot shower, etc.)
  • All the alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks including mineral water
  • Nepal entry visa fee
  • Tipping for the Sublime crew

Availabilities

Start DateEnd DateDurationStatusPrice 
06 Jul, 202022 Jul, 202017 DaysAvailableUS$1700
13 Jul, 202029 Jul, 202017 DaysAvailableUS$1700
20 Jul, 202005 Aug, 202017 DaysAvailableUS$1700
27 Jul, 202012 Aug, 202017 DaysAvailableUS$1700

On our trip status section 'AVAILABLE' means the trip is guaranteed and available on the given price. If you book the trip through the direct booking section, you will receive a payment invoice instantly and receive a confirmation email within 24 hours.

Good to know

Are there any alternatives to Pokhara-Jomsom flight?

Yes, you can take a bus to reach Jomsom or trek in. Jeep and Buses are available to reach Jomsom. However, it may can an entire day. The road condition is not good so it can also be a bit risky. We recommend flight as the best option.

Can I do solo Upper Mustang Trek?

No, you can not do the solo trek to Upper Mustang. This region is listed as a restricted area by the Nepal Government. So, a guide is mandatory while trekking to this region.

Is there any risk of altitude sickness?

Yes, as you will be trekking in the region with an altitude higher than 3000 meters, you have a risk of altitude sickness. You can minimize it by taking proper acclimatization rest and other precautions. 

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FAQs

Yes, you can take a bus to reach Jomsom or trek in. Jeep and Buses are available to reach Jomsom. However, it may can an entire day. The road condition is not good so it can also be a bit risky. We recommend flight as the best option.

No, you can not do the solo trek to Upper Mustang. This region is listed as a restricted area by the Nepal Government. So, a guide is mandatory while trekking to this region.

Customer Reviews

  • Trekking to reach an Ancient City of Lo Manthang

    - Pierre Fortin, France

    I knew Nepal was an amazing country but if somebody had told me this amazing then I would not waste so many years of my life waiting for a perfect time. When I was in Kathmandu on the first day, I thought oh well, it is a nice city, not like any place I have seen but as the trek started, I couldn't believe my eyes sometimes, I would see around and question myself, is this real? That's how incredible Mustang is.

    Yes, the trek was very hard and our guide did everything possible to make it less hard, they would crack jokes, they would tell stories and be the one to help us and the locals communicate. They answered all our silly questions with utter seriousness. I can't tell I have traveled to many places but by my experience, if you travel to such places, you will learn a lot about life beyond technology and modern facilities.

    Mustang was amazing, even if we travelled in monsoon, there was no rain unlike in Kathmandu. Some days were hard, some were fine but some were so beautiful that it is bound to make you want to come here again.