May 27, 2012

Upper Mustang and Lo mangthang trekking in Nepal

Upper Mustang and Lo mangthang trekking in Nepal

Upper Mustang Area trekking Map
Upper Mustang Area trekking Map 

The Mustang Trekking is also called the upper Mustang Trekking, is an exotic tour to unspoiled Tibetan Villages on the other side of Nepalese Himalaya bordering with Tibet. The main highlights of Mustang trekking are antique Tibetan villages, rare medieval Buddhist arts, the exotic culture and the unique beauty of the Himalayan desert. Foreigners were not allowed to enter Upper Mustang until 1992.Upper Mustang is not much in contact with rest of Nepal, and keeps an aura of a remote, mysterious and unusual land which is one of the unique charms of the Mustang trekking. All their festivals are religious in nature, the tiji festival being the biggest. This small medieval kingdom in the vast desert is ruled by local king. The capital called Lo Mangthang, a walled complex with the houses of local nobilities and monasteries will be one of the main attractions of Mustang trekking.
We start our trek from Jomsom and trek northwards into the heart of Mustang reaching the region's capital Lo Manthang after 5 days of trekking through amazing villages and stunning landscapes. We spend two days in this ancient city before returning to Jomsom for our return flight via a slightly different route that takes in the pilgrimage site of Muktinath.
Mustang trekking is located in restricted trekking area. It is necessary for international trekkers to buy special trekking permit for mustang trekking which cost US$ 50 per day and it is compulsory to buy 10 days trekking permit. It means minimum 500 US $ only for permit charge and there must be at least two trekkers to go to the Mustang reason because the Department of Immigration will not issue trekking permit to mustang trek for an individual only.
Upper Mustang Trekking
Upper Mustang Trekking 
Day by day itinerary

Day 1: Kathmandu Arrival
Arrive in  Kathmandu airport. Then transfer to Hotel.

Day 02: Kathmandu Valley City Tour
After breakfast,full day city Tour at Kathmandu in important and popular tour spots which are related with history, culutre and tradition of Nepal ,Pashupatinath Temple, Boudhanath Stupa, Swayambhunath Monaster and Patan Durbar square which are in records of world heritage sites too.

Day 03 : Pokhara Drive or flight to Pokhara overnight in Pokhara hotel      

Day 4: Fly to Jomsom, trek to Kagbeni(2810m)
From Pokhara it is a short flight to reach the airstrip at Jomsom at 2713m.  We cross the river to the eastern bank of the Kali Gandaki and continue onwards to Eklai Bhatti at 2730m. From here we will follow the trail along the river to Kagbeni at 2810m, a fascinating village with many Tibetan influences. Kagbeni is situated at the junction of the Jhong Khola and the Kali Gandaki, and is the northernmost village that can be visited without a permit to continue on to Mustang.

Day 5 : Kagbeni to Chele(3030m)
The trail continues up the eastern side of the Kali Gandaki, heading northwards through Tangbe at 2990m and then on to Chhuksang at the confluence of the Narshing Khola and the Kali Gandaki. The trail continues north before crossing the river to the west bank and climbing out of the Kali Gandaki valley up a rocky gully to Chele at 3030m.

Day 6: Chele to Shyangmochen (3650m)
From Chele the trail climbs along the side of a steep canyon to a pass at 3480m before descending to the popular stopping place of Samar at 3290m. The trail then climbs and drops a few times before reaching the small settlement of Shyangmochen at 3650m

Day 7 :Shyangmochen to Geling (3440m)
After breakfast, we will make a side trip to the canyons and gorges to the east. We will have lunch by a mountain stream after making an excursion to the Cave of The Self-Emanating Buddha. The trail then climbs back up to Shyangmochen and to a pass at 3700m where there is a trail junction for Geling and the Nyi La. We take the right fork and descend to Geling at 3440m

Day 8: Geling to Charang (3490m)
The trail initially climbs gently up the valley, passing above Tama Gaon to the west, before rejoining the direct trail and climbing up the head of the valley to the Nyi La at 3950m. We make a gentle descent from the pass to reach another trail junction and continue to the large village of Ghami at 3460m. The trail now crosses a small bridge over the Tangmar Chu river before climbing past a long mani wall. We then climb to another pass before descending into Charang at 3490m.

Day 9: Charang to Lo Manthang  (3730m)
Lo Mangthang Village
Lo Mangthang Village 
We are now well into the Mustang region and today we trek on to our ultimate destination, the walled city of Lo Manthang. From Charang the trail descends to cross the Charang Chu before climbing to enter the Tholung valley. The trail continues to climb to a ridge where we get our first view of Lo Manthang, and shortly afterwards we reach the city itself, at 3730m. Lo Manthang is surrounded by a whitewashed wall and we enter the city by the gate at the north-eastern corner.

Day 10: In Lo Mathang
This day will be spent in this mystical and isolated city. You will awake to the mystical sounds of monks chanting and the heady sent of temple candles. After having breakfast you will visit the four major temples within the city walls. The major attraction of this area is the three storey’s Jampa Lhakhang, the red Thubchen gompa with a massive assembly hall, Chodey gompa and Choprang gompa. After visiting the temples you will take a walk to visit the ACAP office and to Tarchun Gurung’s shop where you can climb up to the roof for a view of the town, and buy a memento to take away with you.

Day 11: Trip around Lo Manthang
Again you spend another day in Lo Manthang getting to know the place and getting an incite into how the people live in this remote and arid landscape. After having breakfast you will visit the raja’s Place which is an imposing four storey building in the centre of the city. Then you will hire a horse to visit some other villages in this area where you will observe the local culture, life style, tradition and warm heartedness of these people. Return back to Lo Manthang

Day 12: Visit around Lo Manthang area
There are many fascinating ancient buildings to visit in Lo Manthang and this will occupy our day. There are four major temples as well as the Raja’s palace, but it is equally satisfying to observe the unique culture of this place, the people, their houses, and their approach to life.

Day 13: Lo Manthang to Dhakmar
From Lo Manthang we will return by a slightly different route to take in villages that were not visited on the route in. We initially head for Lo Gekar along a local herder’s trail, and shortly afterwards reach the important Ghar gompa, which is one of the oldest active gompas in Nepal. From here we ascend a pass and make a steep, dusty descent to the pretty village of Dhakmar.

Day 14: Dhakmar to Syangbochen (3650m)
We rejoin our walk-in route at the village of Ghami at 3460m, and continue to trek southwards and meet up with the trail from Charang, before ascending to the Nyi La and then dropping into the Geling valley. From here we vary the route to that taken on the way up and descend to the village of Tama Gaon. Continuing south we eventually rejoin the main trail and climb up to the village of Syangbochen

Day 15: Syangbochen to Chhuksang
We continue to descend and cross back to the eastern bank of the river before continuing south to Chhuksang where we spend the night.

Day 16: Chhuksang to Muktinath ( 3800m)
We begin by trekking east and then in a southerly direction along a rarely-used trail with no human settlements to reach the impressive abandoned fortress of Jhong. We then cross the Jhong Khola and climb up to the holy Hindu and Buddhist pilgrimage site of Muktinath at 3800m. We visit the temples and religious shrines.

Day 17: Muktinath to Jomsom ( 2700m)
The last day of our trek - from here we retrace our steps down the Kali Gandaki to Jomsom, from where, tomorrow, we will fly out to Pokhara and then on to Kathmandu.

Day 18:  Early morning fly to Pokhara

Day 19:  Drive or fly to Kathmandu

Day 20: Transfer from hotel to airport, fly home 

See You in Nepal Upper Mustang and Lo mangthang trekking in Nepal...........................