• placeholder
    Nepal
  • mountain
    Moderate
  • trekking
    Lodge to Lodge Trek
  • car
    Private Transport+Tourist Bus
  • cutlery
    Breakfast + Lunch + Dinner
  • tent-handmade-outlined-symbol
    Lodge To Lodge
  • group
    Group Size: 2-16 Pax
  • altitude
    3840m.

About Upper Mustang Trek

The Upper Mustang trek is in an ancient Buddhist kingdom in Nepal. It is a forbidden region behind the high Annapurna mountains. This high mountain desert region is similar to the Tibetan land, so you might have the Tibetan feel while visiting the upper Mustang.

Mustang had a separate king when Nepal was a kingdom, but it belonged to Nepal. There is still a palace in Lomanthang. The trek goes through a historical village Kagbeni, which is a gateway to the upper Mustang. Distinct types of landscape and colourful hills florid the region.

Historical caves, wall paintings, and Buddhist monuments pass some ancient lifestyles and cultures of Mustang. Besides religion, culture and outstanding landscapes, panoramic views of Dhaulagiri, Annapurna, Tilicho peak, Tukuche peak, Nilgiri and other high mountains are other attractions of the upper Mustang trek.

Upper Mustang is a restricted region, so you need to have a special trekking permit to enter. Lomantang is the last destination of the upper Mustang trek. You walk through Chele, Syangbochen, Ghami and Tsarang before reaching Lomantang. You can visit three old monasteries existing since the 13th/14th century in Lo Manthang in the afternoon when you get there. A Four-story Jong cave in Chhoser village provides an ancient history and lifestyle of the Mustang people on the exploration day from Lo Manthang.

On your return, visit Ghar Gompa on the way to Dhakmar. Constructed in the twelve century, dedicated to Guru Rinpoche, who visited the region. The strong belief is if you wish anything from this Gompa, it comes true. You only can see the Annapurna I from this upper trail to Dhakmar during this Mustang trek.

Upper Mustang Jeep Tour

upper mustang jeep tour
4-wheel drive to upper Mustang

There is road access to Lomangtang and even further to the Tibetan border. If you do not have enough time, can’t walk at a high altitude or don’t want to trek through dusty trails, you can book a jeep tour to the upper Mustang.

The jeep tour to the upper Mustang is a luxury mountain trip, so you can explore everything that the trekkers do during the trip. The 14-day upper Mustang trek itinerary can finish in a 5-days jeep tour. So, it may save your time, stamina and budget.

The upper Mustang jeep tour begins from Pokhara and goes to Kagbeni on the first day. After spending a night in Kagbeni, you drive to Lomanthang on the second day. Then, you visit Chhoser on the exploration day from Lo village and back to Dhakmar via Ghar Gompa. You can visit caves on the cliffside of colourful hi in Dhakmar. The fourth-day drive is back to Tatopani from Dhakmar and the 5th day to Pokhara.

Upper Mustang Jeep Tour Itinerary

Day 01: Drive from Pokhara to Kagbeni (2,800m) 7-8 hrs

Day 02: Drive from Kagbeni to Lomanthang (3,840m) 5 hrs

Day 03: Drive to Chhoser (4,784m) for 30 minutes and drive back to Dhakmar (3,820m) for 4 hrs

Day 04: Drive from Dhakmar to Tatopani (1,190m) 6 hrs

Day 05: Drive from Tatopani to Pokhara (8,20m) 5 hrs

Best Time to Trek to Upper Mustang

September to December and March to May are the best timing for the upper Mustang trek. These months usually have clear views of the mountains. Winter is cold, but you can do this with warm equipment. The Mustang is a rain shadow region, so it is doable also in the monsoon season. But, it may affect the Jomsom flight of the summer rain and clouds. Trekking to the upper Mustang in the summer needs around a 3-weeks.

Trek Cost for Upper Mustang

The upper Mustang is expensive trekking compared to the other regular trek in Nepal. A restricted area permit makes it costly for the trip. A minimum of two trekkers need to be in a group for the upper Mustang.

We organize the upper Mustang trek also for a single person, but the cost goes high because of permit sharing. 2-4 people cost 2,400 USD per person for the Mustang trek. If you have a bigger group with more than 5-trekkers, the cost reduces from the main package cost.

We usually arrange the trekking to the upper Mustang with all-inclusive in the mountain. Also, the package covers a full-day city tour in Kathmandu and accommodation in the city. Hire a guide and porter and pay yourself for the food that seems cheaper for the Mustang trek.

Trekking Itinerary to Upper Mustang 

The upper Mustang trek itinerary depends on the route and direction that you are following. Start walking from Nayapul and Beni and fly out from Jomsom after Lomanthang is a long Itinerary. Both-way flight to/from Jomsom is a short Mustang trekking itinerary.

Alternatively, you can start walking from Kagbeni, walk to Lomanthang, and trek back to Kagbeni again. You can drive back from Kagbeni to Pokhara in one day in the end. It is a 12-day upper Mustang itinerary if you use both ways driving to/ from Kagbeni. The road is bumpy with lots of landslides if rainfall, so it is no good to take the driving route during the monsoon to Mustang.

Our regular Upper Mustang trek itinerary is for 14 days, but you find it for 19-days from your home to home. The Mustang journey begins with a flight to Jomsom from Pokhara and treks to the Kagbeni on the first day. Then, it goes to Lomanthang via Chele, Syangbochen, Ghami and Tsusang. You have an exploration day in Lo village to visit the Jhong cave and monasteries. On your return, you take the upper route via Ghar Gompa to Dhakmar. You can fly out from Jomsom after your trek if you have a short holiday for Mustang. Otherwise, you can walk a few more days down to Beni or Nayapul.

Upper Mustang for Nepali

Most Nepali travellers to the upper Mustang are for a jeep tour. It is very cheap to travel Mustang for Nepali. The internal visitors do not need a special permit to the Mustang. Rather than doing a trek, all Nepalese visitors drive in a jeep or a bike tour to the upper Mustang.

All Nepalese travellers to Lomanthang can not ride motorbikes, and some might not have an interest in driving off-road in the Himalayas. We offer all transportation from Kathmandu to Lomantang and the Tibetan border to the Nepali. We arrange a tourist bus from Kathmandu to Pokhara and a 4-wheel drive jeep to the Mustang. It is a group tour, so we collect people to operate the trips to the Mustang.

Permit Cost for Upper Mustang

Trekkers need to take two different permits for the upper Mustang trek. Annapurna conservation area entry tickets and restricted area entry tickets are essential entry documents for the upper Mustang. The restricted permit can issue from the Nepal immigration office in Kathmandu and Pokhara. On the other hand, the Annapurna conservation one can obtain from the national trust for nature conservation office in Kathmandu and Pokhara.

Nepalese visitors no need to have a special permit, but other travellers must have it. It costs 500 USD per person for the first-10 days for all foreigners. An additional 50 USD per day will add after the 10th day. It is the same fare for all nations visitors except the Nepali. But, the Annapurna conservation entry permit has a variation price. It costs 3,000 NPR for all trekkers besides the south Asian travellers. Visitors from India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Srilanka and Maldives cost just 1,000 NPR.

Upper Mustang Trek Attraction

Kaligandaki Valley and Gorge

The Kali Gandaki valley is a Himalayan valley in between two massive mountain ranges Annapurna and Dhaulagiri. It is a windy valley, so a big wind blows in the afternoon every day. But, if the day is cloudy, there won’t be a strong wind. Walking through the Kaligandaki river bank in this valley, you can collect some Saligrama (fossil).

The Kali Gandaki river gorge (Andha Galchi) is the world’s deepest gorge between Ghasa and Dana villages. This deep Galchi divides Dhaulagiri (8,167m) between the west and the Annapurna I (8,091m) in the east. Because of the measurement of these two giant peaks from the bottom, it is the world’s deepest canyon.

Kagbeni Village

kagbeni village
Kagbeni village

The Kagbeni is an ancient and beautiful village in the Mustang district. Located at 2,800m, it is the gateway to the upper Mustang. Made in 1429, Kag Chode Thupten Samphel Ling Monastery in the place is a highlighted thing to visit.

It is a holy place for the Hindus. There are many Hindus from different regions of Nepal for a ritual ceremony for their lost parents. Kagbeni divides the trail to Muktinath and Lomantang.

Off Genre Landscapes and Colourful Hills

Mostly Nepal has greenery lands, but you can see different types of landscapes on the upper Mustang trek. Except for some barley and oat farm, it is hard to find green grassland. So, The Mustang has been composed of the high Himalayan deserty lands.

The colourful hills offer you a feeling like being in the off universe from the Mustang region. There are hundreds of caves on the sides of these hills. The locals underwent the caves for religious and safety purposes.

Experiencing the Religion and Culture of Mustang

Visiting some ancient historic Monasteries in the upper Mustang may offer you peace and prosperity. You will have a fateful time to know about religion and culture from these religious sites in Mustang. You can also learn about the second mini kingdom of Nepal by visiting the palace in Lomantang. The polyandry marriage system and sky burial death ritual are strange experiences for the Mustang visitors. The Tiji is a fateful festival that celebrates in May every year in Lo Manthang.

Jhong Cave

The Jong (Zhong cave) is a sky cave in the Chhoser village. This 5-story cavern has more than 40 different rooms. You can visit this during the exploration day from Lomanthang. It had made by man, but there is no proof about who had made it yet.

According to the legend, the villagers used to hide in this to protect themselves from the enemy. You can see a beautiful glimpse of Chhoser village, monasteries and mountains from its windows.

Accommodation, Food and Drinks in Upper Mustang

The trekking trail to the upper Mustang is well-organized, so it is not difficult to get accommodation during the trek. Most of the lodges have attached bathrooms in the camps. Because of not flooded trekkers, you can easily find accommodation during the upper Mustang trek.

You can have food from a menu in the guesthouses where you stay. So, you don’t have to take the local dishes on the trek. You can buy bottled mineral water everywhere along the way. Also, you can drink tap water using the purification methods if you would like to.

Internet, Phone and Battery Charging

There are no wi-fi services for the internet users til now, but they will have them soon. You can take a SIM card with the internet data for the upper Mustang region. There is just a signal for the NTC mobile in the upper Mustang region, so be sure if you are buying the NTC or NCELL card. You can also make a call to your family and relatives through this SIM from the upper Mustang trek.

You can charge your phone, camera and other gadgets during the trek, and it’s mostly free of cost. Most of the places have proper electricity in the upper Mustang route.

Trekking Equipment for the Upper Mustang

Trekking equipment plays a vital role in successful Himalayan travel. The Mustang is a cold and windy region, so it is good to have essential gears to stay protected from these things. You might think that you do not need to pack rain gear for the Mustang. Because you hear, it is a rain shadow region. Of course, It doesn’t rain in the higher territory, but it does in the lower areas. So, check some essential gear for the Mustang that you should not forget to pack here:

  • Sun hat
  • Warm hat
  • Sunglasses
  • Thermal layers
  • Few long and short trekking shirts
  • Long and short hiking trousers
  • Buff
  • Fleece jacket
  • Wind stopper
  • Down jacket
  • Few pairs of trekking socks
  • Rain gear
  • Daypack
  • Rukshak or duffel bag
  • Head torch
  • Sun lotion
  • Lip balm
  • Good quality hiking boots
  • Sport shoes
  • Water sandals
  • Warm gloves
  • Windproof trouser

Collaborate with Frolic Adventure for the Upper Mustang Journey

Frolic Adventure operates the upper Mustang trek from Kathmandu. We are an authorized local trekking organizer in Nepal. Remember us for your amazing Mustang trip, so we manage the Mustang tour with reliable cost and securely. A minimum of 2-travellers need to be in a group to travel Mustang. We make bookings even for individuals and manage group permits for the upper Mustang. You can directly book the trip from our departure dates or offer your dates by contacting us.

Highlights of Upper Mustang Trek

  • High Himalayan desert like a pic of Tibet
  • Annapurna, Dhaulagiri, and Tibetan massif
  • Delightful apple orchids
  • Wide Kali Gandaki Valley
  • Beautiful and historical village Kagbeni
  • Saligrama (Fossil) 
  • Buddhist monuments and Monasteries
  • Pink hills
  • Sky burial (cremation) and polyandry marriage system

 

Itinerary

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Upon your arrival at the Tribhuvan international airport in Kathmandu, an airport representative from Frolic Adventure will pick you up with private transportation, and then transfer you to the hotel. Here at the hotel, you meet the tour operator and have a pre-trip meeting after your check-in.

  • Meals: Breakfast
  • Accommodation: Hotel
  • Place: Kathmandu
  • Altitude: 1350m.
  • Mode of Transportation: private transport

You have a full day Kathmandu city tour today. Frolic Adventure arranges trekking permits during your sightseeing period. You need to pass your passport to obtain a restricted area entry permit to the company representative before starting the city tour. You will visit Kathmandu Durbar square, Swayambhunath, Pashupatinath and Bouddhanath during the sightseeing trip today. An experienced tour guide leads you to these UNESCO world heritage sites and then brings you back to the hotel.

  • Meals: Breakfast
  • Accommodation: Hotel
  • Place: Kathmandu
  • Altitude: 1350m.
  • Mode of Transportation: prtvate transport
  • Departure Time: 9:00 am

Today, you drive from Kathmandu to Pokhara in a tourist bus. It is a 200km drive and takes around 7 hours to reach Pokhara. You can fly alternatively from Kathmandu domestic terminal. After you check-in at the hotel in Pokhara, you can walk around the Lakeside and overnight in Pokhara.

  • Meals: Breakfast
  • Accommodation: Hotel
  • Place: Pokhara
  • Altitude: 820m.
  • Mode of Transportation: Tourist bus
  • Departure Time: 7:00 am

Today, you fly from Pohara to Jomsom in the early morning. Right after landing at the Jomsom airport, you follow the Kaligandaki valley for Kagbeni. Kagbeni is an ancient village and the gateway to the upper Mustang. After you drop your language in the guesthouse, you can visit the village and an old Buddhist monastery.

  • Meals: Breakfast+Lunch+Dinner
  • Accommodation: Lodge
  • Place: Kagbeni
  • Altitude: 2800m.
  • Mode of Transportation: Plane + walk
  • Departure Time: 6:00 am

Following the Kaligandaki river, you go for Chele today. It is about 6 hrs journey to the camp through Tangbe and Chhusang villages. You can see beautiful grey and brown hills along the way to Chele with snow-capped Nilgiri mountain behind.

  • Meals: Breakfast+Lunch+Dinner
  • Accommodation: Lodge
  • Place: Chele
  • Altitude: 3100m.
  • Mode of Transportation: walk
  • Departure Time: 8:00 am

After your breakfast at the guesthouse in Chele, You will walk around 3 hours to Samar and stop for lunch. Two different trails go to Syangbochen from Samar. If you follow the road, it has less up and downhill, but the trail via Chhungsi cave has more up and downhills. But the route from Chhungsi cave has better views and more to explore.

  • Meals: Breakfast+Lunch+Dinner
  • Accommodation: Lodge
  • Place: Syangbochen
  • Altitude: 3800m.
  • Mode of Transportation: walk
  • Departure Time: 8:00 am

After enjoying panoramic mountain views of Nilgiri, Tlicho, Annapurna Fang, Khangsarkhang, Thorong peak and more from Syangbochen hill in the morning, you trek to Ghami. Keeping Ghilling on the right, you cross come dry hills to reach Ghami. 

  • Meals: Breakfast+Lunch+Dinner
  • Accommodation: Lodge
  • Place: Ghami
  • Altitude: 3510m.
  • Mode of Transportation: walk
  • Departure Time: 8:00 am

It is another short day of the walk to Tsarang from Ghami. You start the day with a short descending to the stream and cross a suspension bridge before starting ascending part. You will walk through a long Buddhist Mani wall and see the colourful hills towards Dhakmar while you walk on the ascending path. After this hill, you will have to descend and flat part rest of the trail to Charang.

  • Meals: Breakfast+Lunch+Dinner
  • Accommodation: Lodge
  • Place: Tsarang
  • Altitude: 3560m.
  • Mode of Transportation: walk
  • Departure Time: 8:00 am

After Tsarang, you will have a downhill part to the stream. Right after crossing this small stream, you start ascending for a while. Then, you will have a gradual part for about 2 hours. In the end, you will have a downhill to Lomanthang. You will explore the town after lunch in Lomanthang. You can visit historical Buddhist monasteries, the royal palace and more in this town.

  • Meals: Breakfast+Lunch+Dinner
  • Accommodation: Lodge
  • Place: Lomanthang
  • Altitude: 3840m.
  • Mode of Transportation: walk
  • Departure Time: 8:00 am

Today is your exploration day from Lo Manthang. After breakfast at the guesthouse in Lomanthang, you hike to Chhoser village. It is about a 2-hour hike from Lomanthang, or you can hire a horse. You can explore Jhong cave and several old monasteries here. After exploring the Chhoser, you can have lunch and hike back to Lomanthang.

  • Meals: Breakfast+Lunch+Dinner
  • Accommodation: Lodge
  • Place: Lomanthang
  • Altitude: 3840m.
  • Mode of Transportation: walk
  • Departure Time: 8:00 am

Today, you take the upper route to Dhakmar via Ghar Gumba. You can see beautiful views of high snow-capped mountains including the Annapurna I from this trail. It is a long day that takes around 7-8 hours to reach Dhakmar from Lomanthang.

  • Meals: Breakfast+Lunch+Dinner
  • Accommodation: Lodge
  • Place: Dhakmar
  • Altitude: 3820m.
  • Mode of Transportation: walk
  • Departure Time: 8:00 am

You will reach Ghami after walking about half an hour from Dhakmar. Then the trail ascends for another an hour and a half to 2 hours. After that, you start descending to Ghilling for another hour. Here, you can visit some monasteries located on the side of a hill. 

  • Meals: Breakfast+Lunch+Dinner
  • Accommodation: Lodge
  • Place: Ghiling
  • Altitude: 3570m.
  • Mode of Transportation: walk
  • Departure Time: 8:00 am

A gradual ascending trail leads to Syangbochen from Ghilling. You already have been walking the lower trail via Chhungsi cave, so you can take the upper route from Syangbochen to go to Samar. You have a lunch break in Samar, then walk 2 more hours to Chele.

  • Meals: Breakfast+Lunch+Dinner
  • Accommodation: Lodge
  • Place: Chele
  • Altitude: 3100m.
  • Mode of Transportation: walk
  • Departure Time: 8:00 am

You will have a descending part at the beginning of the day from Chele to the Kaligandaki River. Here, you cross a suspension bridge and then walk to Chhusang. Walking on the road, for about 2 hours from Chhusang, you reach Tangbe village and stop for lunch. You will trek another 2 more hours to Kagbeni from Tangbe.

  • Meals: Breakfast+Lunch+Dinner
  • Accommodation: Lodge
  • Place: Kagbeni
  • Altitude: 2800m.
  • Mode of Transportation: walk
  • Departure Time: 8:00 am

It is a short day from Kagbeni to Marpha walking through the Kaligandaki valley. After 2 hours of walking from Kagbeni, you reach Jomsom. If you would like to arrive at Pokhara earlier, you can spend a night in Jomsom to fly in the next morning. It takes another 2 hours more from Jomsom to Marpha. Marpha is the capital of delightful apples, so you can see a big apple orchid here. You can visit the monastery and explore the village in the afternoon. 

  • Meals: Breakfast+Lunch+Dinner
  • Accommodation: Lodge
  • Place: Marpha
  • Altitude: 2600m.
  • Mode of Transportation: walk
  • Departure Time: 8:00 am

You drive from Marpha to Tatopani in the morning. You arrive at Tatopani for lunch and have a full day here. You can visit a natural hot spring in the evening. If you have 2 more days from our regular itinerary, you can trek through the Ghorepani Poon hill route and finish the trek in Nayapul.

  • Meals: Breakfast+Lunch+Dinner
  • Accommodation: Lodge
  • Place: Tatopani
  • Altitude: 1190m.
  • Mode of Transportation: Drive
  • Departure Time: 8:00 am

You will drive from Tatopani to Pokhara directly in a jeep today. It takes around 5 hrs via Beni, Kusma, Nayapul, Kande, and Phedi today. After you arrive in Pokhara, you can check in at the hotel first and then go out to celebrate the trek in the evening.

  • Meals: Breakfast+Lunch
  • Accommodation: Hotel
  • Place: Pokhara
  • Altitude: 820m.
  • Mode of Transportation: Drive
  • Departure Time: 8:00 am

In the early morning, you drive to Kathmandu from Pokhara in a tourist bus. It is about 7 hour drive through beautiful valleys and towns. You will be invited for a farewell dinner this evening by Frolic Adventure.

  • Meals: Breakfast+Dinner
  • Accommodation: Hotel
  • Place: Kathmandu
  • Altitude: 1350m.
  • Mode of Transportation: Drive
  • Departure Time: 7:30 am

You will drop off at the international airport for your final departure with private transportation. 

  • Meals: Breakfast
  • Mode of Transportation: Private transport
  • Departure Time: 3 hrs earlier from international departure

Cost Details

  • Airport picks up and drops by private car/van/bus.
  • 3 nights accommodation in a tourist standard hotel including breakfast as per the above itinerary twin sharing basis.
  • Private car/van/bus and a guide for the cultural tour 
  • All ground and air transportation during the trip.
  • Your standard meal BLD during the trek with a cup of hot tea/coffee for breakfast
  • Fresh fruit after every dinner in the mountain
  • All necessary papers works, special trekking permits, conservation area entry permits,  and monument entrance fees
  • All accommodations in lodges/tea houses during the treks.
  • An experienced, helpful, and friendly guide, porters (1 porter for 2 people).
  • Salary, food, drinks, accommodation, transportation, and insurance for the guide and porter.
  • The arrangement of an emergency helicopter service will be paid for by your travel insurance company.
  • Sleeping bag, down jackets, and duffle bags if you don't have 
  • Certificate of achievement
  • Frolic Adventure invites you to farewell dinner last night.
  • All government taxes (Gst) and Stationery expenses
  • Nepal entry visa fee (you may easily issue the visa upon your arrival at Tribhuwan international airport  (Kathmandu). 
  • Your travel insurance (compulsory).
  • Lunch and dinner while you are in the cities of Kathmandu & Pokhara.
  • All entry fees for heritage sites.
  • Your personal expenses.
  • All the alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks.
  • Sweet things like dessert/chocolate.
  • Hot shower/batteries charge/heater during the trek.
  • International airfare.
  • Tips for the guide, porter & driver.
  • Any others expenses which are not mentioned in including section.

Useful Info

Upper Mustang Trek FAQs

You might have some questions before going to the upper Mustang. Here, we have tried to provide answers to those queries.

When is the best time for Upper Mustang?

September to December and March to May are the best time to visit the upper Mustang. Although, It is doable during the monsoon because of the rain shadow region. The winter might be freezing in the higher areas.

How much does the upper Mustang permit cost?

You need to obtain 2-different trekking permits for the upper Mustang. A restricted area entry ticket costs 500 USD for 10-days. Then, 50 USD will add each day after the 10th. Also, the Annapurna conservation area permit requires for the upper Mustang. It costs 3000 NPR for all visitors except for the people from the South Asian countries. It is just 1000 Npr for travellers from the SAARC nations.

Why the upper Mustang is an expensive trek

The restricted region entry permit and flight ticket to Jomsom make the trek expensive to the upper Mustang.

Do I have a chance of suffering from altitude sickness during a trek to the Upper Mustang?

It is a fewer possibility of suffering from altitude sickness while you trek to the upper Mustang. It just reaches below 4,000m above sea level with a few-days walk from the lower elevation.

How difficult is the upper Mustang trekking?

It is a moderate level trek, so you don’t need to have special physical training for this trekking.

How is the upper Mustang

The upper Mustang is similar to the Tibetan lands, and it looks like a high Himalayan mountain desert.

Can I see Annapurna I from the upper Mustang?

Yes, you can see the Annapurna I from the upper Mustang trail. Although, you can’t see it from everywhere. You have a view of the Annapurna I from the Ghar Gompa trail.

Can I see sky burial in the upper Mustang?

No, the villagers have a cremation site for the sky burial. It is not allowed to go to the cremation area for the other people except for the villagers.

When is the Tiji festival in the upper Mustang?

The Tiji festival is held in May every year and celebrates for 4-days. The Mustang people celebrate this festival to protect the region from disaster.

Is a guide compulsory to trek to the upper Mustang?

The upper Mustang is a restricted region with some strict rules and regulations. You must hire a guide to trek to the upper Mustang.

rajesh-thapaliya
Talk to Leader
Rajesh Thapaliya

+977 9851043624 (Call/WhatsApp/Viber)