Nepal Base Camp Treks(P)Ltd Govt. Regd. No : 144861/071/072 Tourism License No : 1788

Upper Mustang Trekking

Upper Mustang Trekking
04/Apr/2022

Upper Mustang Trekking is a venture to a forbidden land in the trans-Himalayan kingdom of Nepal bordering Tibet. It is one of the world-class trekking trails. The trek offers a spectacular experience for those planning to trek in Nepal. These arid landscapes and deep gorges with deep horizons are breathtaking to capture with our eyes and cameras. We really do not believe our own eyes to see such magnificent gorges, landscapes, and mountain views. This trail was officially opened for trekkers only in 1992.

The trek is becoming popular among tourists who love to trek to less crowded regions as one of the best Nepal Trekking Packages. This area is relatively less exposed and less affected by so-called modernization. The ethnic groups here still practice their classical culture, rituals, and rites, which have been followed for a long time. The Upper Mustang region borders Tibet, and most of its cultural and trade activities are largely based on Tibetan tradition. Even the people of this region have a better connection to Tibet than Nepal.

Trekkers find Upper Mustang Trekking one of the finest wilderness and solitude trekking among other short treks in Nepal. This trekking trail offers a completely different flavor of trekking in Nepal.

Highlights

  • Explore the ancient walled city of Lo Manthang
  • Experience the rich Tibetan culture, traditions, and festivals
  • See breathtaking views of red cliffs, deep gorges, and desert-like scenery
  • Discover ancient caves that were used as homes and meditation sites
  • Visit centuries-old monasteries with beautiful murals and sculptures
  • Enjoy stunning views of the Annapurna and Dhaulagiri mountain ranges
  • Wander through the picturesque Kagbeni village with its medieval architecture
  • Explore the fascinating Chhoser Cave, a series of interconnected rooms carved into a cliff
  • Take in the breathtaking panoramic views from Thorong La Pass

Trekking Route

We begin our Upper Mustang Trekking from Pokhara. To get to Pokhara, we either drive or fly. If we choose to drive, it takes around 7-8 hours; if we choose to fly, it is a short flight of 30 minutes from Kathmandu airport to Pokhara airport. Drive from Kathmandu to Pokhara offers us tremendous insights of country life, swift-flowing rivers, and even mountain peaks.

But we must present the reality of the condition of the road. The road from Kathmandu to Pokhara is normally dusty and not smooth. The traffic is heavy on the narrow road. So, a majority of the tourists who make a trip to Annapurna and Mustang region prefer to take a short flight from Kathmandu to Pokhara.

From Pokhara, we have again two options: either fly to Jomsom or drive. The majority of trekkers choose to fly. It is a 30-minute scenic flight beyond the mountain. Even Jomsom provides us with a slight insight into Himalayan trekking in Nepal. Jomsom. We then, with our equipped team, head to Kagbeni, a beautiful Himalayan town.

The red cliffs, almost shadowed by rain all around the year, are just amazing to capture. Gradually, we get Lo Manthang, the most awaited destination of this trekking. It is a legendary city with a mani wall. We explore this city, spending one spare day. We even encounter some Tibetan dialect and culture at the border and capture some views of Tibetan peaks. We finally trek back to Jomsom along the same trail and take a short flight to Pokhara.

Best Time For Upper Mustang Trek

The best time for the Upper Mustang trek is from March to November. During these months, the weather is stable, and the skies are clear, providing excellent views of the landscapes and mountains. Spring (March to May) brings blooming rhododendrons and lush greenery, while autumn (September to November) offers crisp air and vibrant festivals.

Winter (December to February) can be extremely cold, and many paths may be blocked by snow, making it less ideal for trekking. Similarly, the monsoon season (June to August) brings heavy rains, which can make the trails slippery and difficult to navigate. Thus, for the best experience, plan your trek between March and November.

How Difficult Is Upper Mustang Trek?

The Upper Mustang trek is moderately challenging. It’s not the easiest trek, but it’s not the hardest either. You’ll need to be in decent shape since you’ll walk for several hours daily over rugged terrain. There are steep climbs and descents, so some trekking experience is helpful. However, if you’re a determined beginner and prepare well, you can still manage it.

One of the biggest challenges is the altitude. Parts of the trek go over 4,000 meters, and the thin air can make it harder to breathe and increase the risk of altitude sickness. It is important to take it slow and allow time to acclimatize. While the trek demands physical effort and mental resilience, the stunning scenery and unique cultural experiences make it all worthwhile.

Accommodations and Meals

During the Upper Mustang trek, you’ll stay in teahouses or guesthouses in the villages along the route. These are basic but comfortable lodgings, offering a cozy place to rest after a long day of trekking. Rooms typically have simple beds with blankets, and some may provide private bathrooms, though shared facilities are more common. It’s a good idea to bring a sleeping bag for extra warmth.

Meals are usually provided by the teahouses, offering a variety of local and international dishes. You can expect traditional Nepali meals like dal bhat (rice with lentils) and momo (dumplings), as well as other options like pasta, pancakes, and fried rice. While the food is hearty and nourishing, menu choices may become more limited as you go higher. Drinking plenty of water is essential to stay hydrated, and teahouses often have boiled or filtered water available.

Trek Safely

Wondering how can you maintain your safety while trekking to Upper Mustang? Here are some tipe you can follow to be safe and make an unforgettable memory in this region.

  • Acclimatize Gradually: To prevent altitude sickness, take your time acclimating to the high altitude. Ascend slowly and allow rest days.
  • Stay Hydrated: Drink plenty of water to stay hydrated and help your body adjust to the altitude.
  • Weather Awareness: Prepare for changing weather conditions. Carry appropriate clothing for cold, wind, and possibly rain or snow.
  • Follow Trails: Stick to the established trails and avoid shortcuts. Inform someone of your planned route each day.
  • Guide and Permits: Hire a local guide for better safety and navigation. Ensure you have all necessary permits for the Upper Mustang region.
  • Medical Kit: Carry a basic medical kit with essential items like bandages, pain relievers, and altitude sickness medication.

FAQ

Is a permit required for the Upper Mustang trek?

Yes, a special trekking permit is necessary for the Upper Mustang region, which you can obtain through a registered trekking agency in Nepal.

What is the best time to trek in Upper Mustang?

The best time to trek in Upper Mustang is from March to November. During these months, the weather is stable, and the skies are clear.

Are there ATMs or banks along the trekking route?

No, there are no ATMs or banks along the trekking route. So it’s advisable to carry enough cash for your expenses.

Do I need to bring my own trekking gear?

While you can rent or buy some gear and equipment in Kathmandu or Pokhara, it’s best to bring essential items like sturdy hiking boots, warm clothing, and a sleeping bag.

How difficult is the Upper Mustang trek?

The Upper Mustang trek is moderately challenging. It requires good physical fitness and some trekking experience due to the rugged terrain and altitude.

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