The undisturbed land of the former Lo Kingdom is surrounded by caves, extraordinary rock formations and a desert landscape. Upper Mustang Trek is truly like no other treks on Earth. It is a dry, desolate land, yet full of character. Some trekkers say they feel as if they have been transported to Mars. From desert caves to snowy peaks to pockets of a green oasis, this journey is quite surreal. Those who live in the area carry out traditional practices of Tibetan Buddhism and live in a way as if isolated from the forces of modernization. The Upper Mustang Trek gives us a feeling of peace and joy that fills our hearts and minds.
The Upper Mustang Trek is connected to the Tibetan terrain, just north of the Annapurna massif. The area, which used to be the caravan route to trade with Tibet, was opened to foreigners in 1992. This ‘off-the-beaten-path’ trek begins from Jomsom, which is considered the headquarters of the Upper Mustang region. Heading north through the upper Kali Gandaki River Valley, we find ourselves in Kagbeni. Depending on the time of the year, we may find bright green agricultural fields juxtaposed with the brown sands of the desert. After crossing different villages, we reach to Lo-Manthang, the capital of the upper Mustang and the main attraction of the trek. Within the long stone walls, ancient monasteries and elegant palaces are preserved. Trekkers will find stupas, mani walls, Chortens, and other monuments to Tibetan Buddhism. After the exploration in Lo-Monthang, we trek back to Jomsom and fly to Pokhara. Few trekkers experience this otherworldly place, full of extraordinary rock formations, white Himalayan peaks, and a virtually undisturbed cultural heritage.
Locals in Upper Mustang also celebrate various festivals. Tiji festival is a three-day colorful festival celebrated in Lo-Manthang. The purpose of the festival is to pray that peace on Earth prevails. The festival is celebrated to mark the victory of Buddha’s incarnation over the demon that had been wreaking havoc in the region during ancient times. During the festival, Buddhist monks in the monastery perform an entertaining dance ceremony. The 2020 Tiji festival takes place on the 19th, 20th, and 21st of May. This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, so hopefully, you can make it!
The Upper Mustang Trek is situated in a rain shadow. For this reason, the monsoon season is also a suitable time to trek in the Upper Mustang. Trekkers can enjoy the beauty of Upper Mustang throughout the year, though the best times are during the Spring and Fall, as they provide the clearest skies. The Upper Mustang Trek requires moderate fitness and acclimatization to avoid acute mountain sickness. Also, it is possible to combine this trek with others in the Annapurna region. Breeze Adventure arranges the trek with complete management. Please, feel free to contact us for more detailed information.
Trekking through the Kali Gandaki Valley – the deepest gorge in the world
Cultural beauty of local Tibetan Buddhist villages
Religious experience at Muktinath Temple
Tiji Festival in Lo-Manthang
Sacred caves, fascinating rock formations and desert landscape
Massive Himalayan peaks visible throughout the trek
- Day 01: Arrive in Kathmandu (1350m).
- Day 02: Kathmandu sightseeing, including UNESCO sites.
- Day 03: Drive from Kathmandu to Pokhara (823m).
- Day 04: Fly to Jomsom and trek to Kagbeni (2858m). – 3-4 Hours trek
- Day 05: Trek from Kagbeni to Chele (3050m). – 5-6 hrs.
- Day 06: Trek from Chele to Syanbochen (3475m). – 6-7 Hours
- Day 07: Trek from Syangbochen to Tsarang (3500m). – 7-8 Hours
- Day 08: Trek from Tsarang to Lo-Manthang (3730m). – 5-6 Hours
- Day 09: Explore Lo-Manthang; acclimatization day.
- Day 10: Trek from Lo-Manthang to Ghiling (3806m). – 7 Hours
- Day 11: Trek from Ghiling to Samar (3700m). – 5-6 Hours
- Day 12: Trek from Samar to Chuksang (2980m). – 4-5 Hours
- Day 13: Trek from Chuksang to Muktinath (3710m). – 6-8 Hours
- Day 14: Trek from Muktinath to Jomsom (2740m). – 5-6 Hours
- Day 15: Fly from Jomsom to Pokhara.
- Day 16: Drive back to Kathmandu.
- Day 17: Final Departure.
Upper Mustang Trek includes accommodation in the cost. This accommodation is included during the set itinerary. While in Kathmandu, we provide a 2-3 Star hotel for you. During the trek, our guides will pick the best lodge for you to stay in based on their experience as well as room availability. All the accommodations will be a twin-shared basis. In the mountain, Shower and toilet will be on Sharing basis. During the high trekking season, you may have to share a room with a same-sex trekker from another group.
Nepal has a wide variety of food and it is easy to cater to your needs. If you are a vegetarian/vegan, gluten or lactose free, we are able to work around that if you let us know ahead of time. During your time in the hotel in Kathmandu, your breakfast is included. Lunch and dinner must be covered on your own. On the trek, breakfast, lunch, and dinner are provided. For teahouse treks, we can order typical Nepali food, continental, Italian, Tibetan and Indian at teahouses. While camping, we will prepare the meals for you. After our trek, we will have a celebration/pre-departure traditional Nepali meal in Thamel.
Guide & Porters
A government-licensed guide will lead the trek. All our guides have tremendous experience on the trails and are passionate about the trekking industry. Our guides and porters are dedicated to making your experience of trekking in Nepal a memorable one. If there is any worry during your trek, our guides will address it. Your safety is our number one priority. For groups of more than six people, there will be two guides. For teahouse treks, there will be one porter for every two trekkers.
As many of our treks lead us high into the Himalayas, it is necessary to let our bodies sufficiently get used to the altitude. Our treks have acclimatization days built into the itinerary at Lo Manthang. It is best to take it slow to prevent altitude sickness. The level of fitness necessary for our treks varies depending on the trek. On average, expect to walk an average of 5-6 hours per day while on the trial. Generally, the treks can be done with an average level of fitness. More important than fitness or experience is one’s personal determination and positive attitude toward finishing and enjoying the trek.
We strongly recommend having travel insurance before going on a trek. We do our best to take care of you, but something can happen that is out of our control. In case of medical emergency, leading to a helicopter evacuation, it is best to have insurance. You are unable to obtain medical insurance in Nepal and must do so in your home country. Be sure that your insurance covers accidents abroad and high in the mountains.
Best Time to Travel
The peak seasons for traveling in Nepal are during the Spring (March to May) and the Autumn (September to November). These times provide the best scenery and clearest skies, but of course, they are a little more crowded than the off-season. It is possible to trek during the Winter (December to February), but you will face cold temperatures. It is also possible to trek during the monsoon season (June to August), though the views will likely be covered by clouds and there is a high chance of rainfall.
Please be assured that Breeze Adventure manage our treks to the highest standards. Your safety and satisfaction are our priority. We will support you to the best of our abilities with any issues that may arise. From time to time flights to and from Jomsom may be delayed due to weather conditions. It is often worthwhile to include a day or two extra in your schedule to be used in the event of a delay, or if you require a little extra time during the trek. We will work with you to ensure you get the most from your trek and visit Nepal.