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Upper Mustang Trekking
To trek in Upper Mustang is a rare privilege. Here you will experience the way of life of true mountain people, who have been cut off from the rest of Nepal for years and even until recent times had an officially recognized king. In many ways, a trek into Upper Mustang is similar to trekking in Tibet, as geographically it is a part of the Tibetan plateau. The district of Mustang was, until 1950, a separate kingdom within the boundaries of Nepal. The last king, the Raja of Mustang, still has his home in the ancient capital known as Lo Manthang.
Upper Mustang was opened to non-Nepali trekkers only some fifteen years ago and even today, access is still highly restricted. To enter Upper Mustang, that is to travel further north from Kagbeni, trekkers need a special trekking permit and must be accompanied by a government appointed Environmental Officer. The expenses of the Environmental Officer must be borne by the group and trekkers are required to arrange their trek through a government recognized trekking agency in order to receive the permits.
Upper Mustang, being in the Himalayan rain shadow, is one of the regions in the country that are suitable for trekking during the monsoons. During this time, the upper Kali Gandaki valley is still quite dry with only occasional rainfall. The Mustang trek is not particularly difficult, the highest point reached being only 3,800 meters, but the conditions at times can be arduous. Mustang is cold in winter and is always windy and dusty through the year. Winter treks are best avoided due to harsh weather.
There are few accommodation facilities available above Kagbeni, so groups must be fully self-sufficient, especially in fuel. While porters are available in Jomsom it is preferable to use mules to carry the loads up to Mustang. These pack animals are available locally and are more economical, and certainly more environmentally friendly than porters.
The Mustang Trek requires a minimum of 9 days, starting and ending in Kagbeni. This allows the trek to be completed within the ten-day period that the permit allows. The route generally follows the Kali Gandaki valley but, occasionally climbs high above the valley walls. The settlements are scattered and there is little sign of cultivation between villages. In Mustang, little grows without irrigation, thus the region resembles a desert albeit mountainous, with the settlements reminiscent of oases.
Lo Manthang, the old capital, is reached in four days and at least one extra day should be spent here to catch the sights and sound of this unique walled settlement. Ponies are available for hired if you so desire. The return trip can either follow the same route while entering or, as an alternative route, the eastern bank of the Kali Gandaki may be followed.
Your Itinerary at a glance
Day 01- Arrival in Kathmandu airport (1345meters) and transfer to the hotel.
Overnight at hotel. Welcome dinner.
Day 02- Sightseeing around Kathmandu valley. After breakfast Sightseeing tour:-
Pasupatinath temple, Buddhanath, Monkey temple, Bhaktpur durbar square and Kathmandu durbar square. Trip preparations for the trek. Overnight at hotel.
Day 03- Drive to Pokhara (900 meters) 7 hours by tourist bus.
Trekking staff will come to your Hotel early in the morning at 6:30 am to pick you up and then the bus leaves around 7.30 am to Pokhara. Overnight at hotel.
Day 04- Early in the Morning flight to Jomsom and trek to Kagbeni (2800 meters).
Overnight at teahouse or Tented Camp.
Day 05- Trek to Chaile (3050 meter.) Overnight at teahouse or Tented Camp.
Day 06- Trek to Geling (3500 meters). Overnight at teahouse or Tented Camp.
Day 07- Trek to Charang (3620meters). Overnight at teahouse or Tented Camp.
Day 08- Trek to Lo Manthang (3840 meters). Overnight at teahouse or Tented Camp.
Day 09- Visit Namgyal Gompa and Tingkhar. Overnight at tea-house or Tented Camp.
Day 10- Trek to Dhi (3410 meters) Overnight at tea-house or Tented Camp.
Day 11- Trek to Tange (3370 meters). Overnight at tea house or Tented Camp.
Day 12- Trek to Tetang/ Chusang (3022 meters). Overnight at tea-house or Tented Camp.
Day 13- Trek to Jomsom (2713meters).
Day 14- Early in the Morning flight to Pokhara. It takes about 25 minutes.
Overnight at hotel in Pokhara. Afternoon free yourself or sightseeing optional.
Day 15- Sightseeing tour around Pokhara.
Day 16- Drive or fly back to Kathmandu (1345meters). Overnight hotel in Kathmandu.
Extend your trip:Jungle Safari in Nepal, White Water Rafting,shopping around Kathmandu & Everest Mountain Flight to View Excellent View.