A trek in mysterious Mustang remains one of the ultimate journeys it is possible to make, because of its rugged expansive landscape and because of its closed and long-concealed history.
Mustang, situated north of the Annapurna Himal on the border of Tibet, has only been open to foreigners for 15 years and remains a restricted region, with special permits being required to visit.
Trekkers who have been into Mustang speak of the sentiments of wonder and privilege which the journey evokes, of the surreal quality of the landscape, and the powerful emotions triggered by being present in such a mystical region, so frozen in history.
Hiking into Mustang’s intriguing parched landscape, you will walk past villages with multi-storeyed houses, forlorn monasteries and crumbling castles on the way to Lo Manthang, the walled capital city of this once autonomous kingdom.
The most striking element is nature itself – with sandstone pillars rising up near old moraines and the northward trail angling up and down over barren eroded ridges and high terraces. Mustang’s pastel hues: washed out red and yellow, sienna, tan and grey, undergo dramatic changes in lighting throughout the day and as you approach the Tsarang area the tall castles are clear reminders that you are in a region of Tibetan rather than Nepali culture.
Mustang was a separate kingdom inside the boundary of Nepal as recently as 1950, with the ‘Raja’ still maintaining his residence in Lo Manthang.
Built in 1380 by the first king of Lo, the city stands as a testimony to his prosperity, derived from its trading links with Tibet.
The city wall is 700 meters long and eight meters high, with a series of 14 guard towers along the periphery, built to protect the town from invasion. The king’s palace is surrounded by a maze of gompas and private houses, all enshrined within the city boundary walls.
The life of Lo Manthang is deeply rooted in the religious sentiments and ancient cultural customs of its people, who still practice polygamy (multiple marriages)!
The town is studded with chortens, maniwalls and monasteries – and colourful prayer flags flutter above the houses.
Day 01 : Arrival Kathmandu, transported toHOTEL.
Day 02 : A full-day sightseeing within the Kathmandu Valley
Day 03 : Transported to airport – fly Pokhara – transported to hotel
Day 04 : Transfer – fly Jomsom – trek Kagbeni
Day 05 : Kagbeni / Chhomnang (2920 m)
Day 06 : Chhomnang / Giling (3600 m)
Day 07 : Giling / Tsarang (3500 m)
Day 08 : Tsarang / Lo Mangthang (3700 m)
Day 09 : Lo Manthang
Day 10 : Lo Mangtang / Tsarang (3500 m)
Day 11 : Tsarang / Tange
Day 12-14 : Tange / Tentang
Day 15 : Tentang / Muktinath
Day 16 : Muktinath / Jomsom
Day 17 : Fly Pokhara – transported toHOTEL
Day 18 : Pokhara Free time
Day 19 : Fly to Kathmanu
Day 20 : Free time in Kathmandu
Day 21 : Transported to airport – flight to onward destination