Trekking in Nepal should be on the bucket list of every adventurous soul. It offers multiple trekking routes from where the travelers can choose. Out of all the trekking routes, the Upper Mustang Trekking route stands out to be one of the best routes in the country.
Upper Mustang goes by the name, the last forbidden kingdom as foreigners were not allowed to enter this region. By the mid-1990s, this region finally opened up to tourism but still had multiple restrictions.
The topography of the region consists of large dry arid lands which are very similar to deserts and it has settlements scattered throughout the region. These settlements thrive due to their water sources. It also has many gorges formed over the course of centuries.
This region has a deep-rooted history. This region has been living in such seclusion that it has a culture of its own. In the late 2000s, caves up on the cliffs were discovered which brought the attention of archaeologists and historians all over the world. These caves were given the name, sky caves and you can visit them.
This region was not open to tourism but with the development of tourism in Nepal, visiting the forbidden kingdom of Mustang became a possibility. This route takes us through an extraordinary journey through the vast arid lands and rocky hills which have been eroded with the course of time. You will also spot several sky caves as you go along.
This former kingdom has its capital in Lo Manthang. It is also known as the walled city. This city has a charm of its own and its unique culture and people will surely give you an enthralling experience.
As the level of difficulty is moderate, your trekking will be slightly challenging in certain parts. This region celebrates various festivals and Tiji festival is certainly one of them. You will also come across several monasteries which are hundreds of years old.
This trek starts after you arrive in Jomsom via flight and then you start on foot. You will trek through the trail of the Kali Gandaki river and pass through places such as Kagbeni, Syanbochen, Charang and finally to Lo- Manthang. While you return, you will return to a different trail.
This region has the people of Thakali and Tibetan ethnicity and their unique culture will certainly be a wonderful experience. Every settlement has different housing structures and feels to it.
So, plan your trip to the mystical part of Nepal this year with Sublime Trails. This forbidden kingdom has natural as well as cultural beauty and traditions which have been followed for centuries.
Our representatives will be at the airport to pick you up and take you to your hotel. You can rest after the long flight. Later in the evening, you can enjoy in the tourist hub of Kathmandu which is known as Thamel.
On this day we will prepare for our trek. We will talk about our guide and make sure we have everything we need for the trek. Also, you make do your last minute shopping too.
Later, we head to several UNESCO World Heritage sites in Kathmandu. Sites like Kathmandu Durbar Square, Swayambhunath, Boudhanath, Pashupatinath Temple, Patan Durbar Square and Bhaktapur Durbar Square. We will spend our night in Kathmandu.
On the 3rd day of the trip, we will head to the lake city of Pokhara. The bus ride will give you an idea of rural life in Nepal. You will also see the landscape drastically over the due course of time. After reaching Pokhara you can spend your evening in Lakeside.
Pokhara is one of the most popular cities in Nepal which attracts a large number of tourists. It has beautiful lakes and offers a spectacular view of the mountain ranges of Annapurna and Dhaulagiri. Also, you have the option to take a flight from Kathmandu to Pokhara.
We will take a flight early in the morning from Pokhara to Jomsom. This flight takes about 25 minutes. You can enjoy the view of the mountain ranges that are on display.
After reaching Jomsom, we will prepare ourselves for the trek it is from Jomsom that our journey starts on foot. The trail starts off pretty easy as you walk from Jomsom and will reach Kagbeni after walking for about 4 hours. We will spend the night in Kagbeni.
On this day, you will be crossing the 3000 meters mark as you continue your journey towards Chele. We will trek along a beautiful trail along the Kali Gandaki River.
We will trek past two villages, the first one is Tangbe village and then head to Chhusang. After walking a total of 5 to 6 hours, we will reach Chele.
The trail will get fairly challenging as we head to Syanbochen on the sixth day. We will first reach Eklebhatti and rest. We will then go past the Taklam Pass. while crossing the pass, you will come across a spectacular view of mountains Tilicho and Damodar peaks. We will then cross the Samar village and then reach Syanbochen. We can also visit the Ramchung cave.
We ascend to the Yamda La pass which is situated at an altitude of 3,850 meters. The trail will provide us with few teahouses, chortens and beautiful villages. We then trek along the rocky trail and we will also see barley fields occasionally.
After going further, we will reach Nyi Pass at 4,010m. From here, we descend to Ghami which is one of the biggest villages in the Lo region. The village is beautiful with fields surrounding the entire village. We will spend the night in Ghaymi.
On this day, our trek will start after a descent through a rough and rocky trail. We will then cross a suspension bridge over the Ghami Khola(river) and then begin our ascent. The trail becomes better due to the mani walls along the trail. After this, we will cross the Tsarang La Pass at 3870m and reach Tsarang village.
The village lies atop the Charang Chu canyon with a huge fortress and a red gompa towards. After walking for about 5-6 hours, we will reach Charang where we will spend the night.
On this day, we will be reaching the famed walled city, Lo Manthanag. We will explore the small village of Charang and will also visit the Gompa and 700 years old palace. After breakfast, we will start our journey towards the forbidden kingdom of Lo Manthang.
The trail takes us through rocky paths and after ascending through this trail, we will be blessed with the view of mountains such as Tilicho, Bhrikuti, Neelgiri, Annapurna, among others. We will head down the downhill path and again start our ascend until we reach the outskirts of Lo Manthang. We will descend again and then take a left turn bypassing the massive rocky hill and reach Lo Manthang.
On this day, we will explore Lo Manthang. We will visit three of the most famous Gompas of this region-Jhampa, Thupchen and Chhoeda. Thanks to the preservation efforts, these Gompas have stood the test of time.
You can also visit the palace of the former king of this region and go around the city observing its high walls and amazing people. Also, you can do your souvenir shopping. We will rest and prepare for the remainder of the journey.
While returning, we will take a different trail to get the full Upper Mustang experience. The major attraction of this day would be the well preserved and famous rock paintings of this region. We will also come across quite a few Gompas.
We start very early on this day to avoid the strong winds of this region. We then descend down the hill until the trail passes through a dry plateau and fields and ultimately reaching Ghiling. The trek can get quite challenging. Most probably, we will face strong winds.
Ghiling is a small village surrounded by vast barren lands. From here, we can experience the majestic view of Dhaulagiri and Nilgiri mountains. We can tour the village around the evening. We will spend the night in Ghiling.
We will continue making our return journey as we head to Chhuksang. The trail gets less challenging and the altitude also starts decreasing. After walking for about 5-6 hours, we will finally reach Chhuksang. We will also be able to experience wonderful view of the mountains.
This will be the last day of the trek. We will walk through the barren land and head towards to Jomsom. We will stop for lunch at Kagbeni and carry on with our journey. After a while, the Upper Mustang trail will come to an end as we join the Annapurna circuit trail and finally reach Jomsom. On this day, we will walk a total of 7 hours.
On this day, we will take a flight early in the morning. The total duration will be about 25 minutes. After reaching Pokhara, you can rest for a while or go for a boat ride. Later in the evening, you can spend quality time around Lakeside which serves delicious local food and few restaurants have good live music.
We head back to Kathmandu on this day. The bus ride will start at 7:30 in the morning and will take about 6-7 hours. Enjoy the beautiful scenery of the Nepali countryside. We spend the night in Kathmandu and go around Thamel which is tourist hub in Kathmandu and enjoy the night. You can also do souvenir shopping in Thamel.
Time to head back to your home and share your wonderful experience in Nepal with your family and friends.
Also, if you decide to extend your stay in Nepal, you can inform us. We at Sublime trails would be honored to be at your service. We provide various tour services. If you also want to trek in another region, we would be happy to guide you.