The arid and isolated erstwhile Kingdom of Mustang lies in the north-west Upper Mustang region of Nepal. It was the least known destination among foreign tourists before 1992. After the 1992 trekking department of Nepal Immigration office issues special permit charging the US $ 500 each person for 10 days and the US $ 50 for an extra day for every trekker visiting Upper Mustang region. Apart from the Upper Mustang special trekking permit, we also need an ACAP entry permit. Despite the exorbitant permit fee, the Kingdom of Mustang is still in the bucket list among the wanderers and explorers.
Trekking to this area inspires any trekkers to explore centuries-old monasteries, treeless barren landscape, eroded sandstone pillars, barley fields and has now become a very popular destination. The high altitude trails and extreme deserts, religion, culture, and lifestyle of the local people are the major highlights of the trek. Nowadays trekking to the Kingdom of Mustang has become relatively easier than before due to connectivity of the road.
Trekking to this isolated area of the Kingdom of Mustang offers the opportunity to explore ancient villages where only a few travelers have been before. Most of the trekking trails pass through arid, high deserts inhabited mostly by people of Tibetan stock. The menfolk of the area are either traders or farmers while the women mostly tend the fields.
The trek to this land of magic and mystery begins in Jomsom, following a mountain flight from Pokhara and trek to Kagbeni, a ruined citadel town that guards the entrance into Mustang. On the way, we walk through Chele, Gelling Tsarang & finally reach Lo Manthang. In fact, Lo Manthang is renowned for its tall white washed mud brick walls, Gompas, 15th century-old Buddhist Mandalas, five-storied structure former Mustang King’s Palace built in 1400 A.D and several Buddhist monasteries.
After entering Mustang, we visit the 16th-century monastery at Charang and the fortress city of Lo-Manthang. Here we can see the splendors and traditions of old Tibet. On our return journey from Mustang, we visit the sacred pilgrimage site of Muktinath and end our trek in Jomsom and fly back to Pokhara. Whoever does this trek will have an unforgettable experience.
Kingdom of Mustang trekking can be organized in a lodge to lodge basis and it is the cheap and best way to travel.
The best time to visit Upper Mustang is from the beginning of March to late December. June to September is the best time of the year to visit mustang to see the greenery of the Himalayan arid plateau. As the Kingdom of Mustang lies in the rain shadow area of Himalayas, there is no monsoon during summer. October and November in autumn are also possible to do trekking in Upper Mustang.
• Explore the ancient city of Mustang region beyond Himalaya, with its walled city Lomathang and traditional Buddhist culture that has survived in an isolated part of Nepal since the eighteen century.
• Trek through high altitude trails between barren rugged landscape, local barley fields and astonishing colourful cliffs.
• Visit Nepal’s Eastern and Western Valley region, where very few people have visited.
• Breathtaking scenic flight from Kathmandu to Pokhara, and then on to Jomsom, which lands at the deepest river gorge valley of Jomsom, in between the Annapurna and Dhaulagiri mountains.
• Treat yourself at Pokhara’s comfort stay, and a visit to the famous Phewa Lake for a boat riding trip.
• Historic sight visit in Kathmandu, exploring its colourful markets and world heritage sites, staying in comfort.
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