Upper Mustang is known as “the last forbidden kingdom” of Nepal is a remote trans-Himalayan village of Nepal. Until 1992 it was forbidden to enter Upper Mustang because of the security region, it is also known as the Lost Tibetan Kingdom. Trekking in Upper Mustang is a rare privilege to withness a preserved culture and heritage. Even the Tibetan Guru the Dalai Lama considered Mustang is only places in the whole Himalan region that it’s orgiginal culture and heritage are well presevered. Mustang is the place where the true originality of Himalayan people exists. You can explore and get chance to know the lifestyle of Himalayan people who are not much in the touch with the rest of the world. Mustang is famous for isolated Caves, mystical Methi – a wild Man, walled cities, red mud cliffs, oldest monastries, colorful buckwhaeat fields and wonderful mountain views. People even compare upper Mustang’s landscape as Grand Canyon of USA.
People in Upper Mustang used to have their own officially recognized king even until recent time. The last king, ( Raja of Mustang), still has his Palace in the ancient capital known as Lo Manthang ( the Royal place was partly damaged by earthquake in 2015). Geographically, Upper Mustang is the part of Tibetan plateau so visiting Upper Mustang is like visiting Tibet.
Upper Mustang was made accessible for Foreigners (non-Nepali trekkers) from 1992 and only 1000 trekker a year is allowed to enter Mustang each year. Even today, access is highly restricted and You will need a special trekking permit to travel further from Kagbeni and one must hired a licensed trekking compnay to organize your trek to Upper Mustang.
One of the oldest Festival in Mustang region the Tiji festival is also the major attraction in Upper Mustang . “Tiji” the name is an abbreviation of the word “Tempa Chirim” which means “Prayer for World Peace”. Tiji is a fascinating annual three-day festival consisting of Tibetan rituals that celebrate the myth of a son who had to save the Mustang kingdom from destruction. This is the reason that Tiji festival also known as Demon Chasing festival.
Tiji festival is celebrated in the month of May each year inforont of Royal palace of Mustang. If you wish to trek to Mustang the Tiji Festival time is very good time as you will be able to see many people in their traditional ornaments and custume and in joyful festive mood. You will be able to see coloful Mask dances and can enjoy beautiful weather in May.
Mustang Trek Highlights:
After you have arrived to Kathmandu you can rest and you will get to enjoy exploring Kathmandu valley on second day.
You will get chance to visit UNESCO world heritage sites and will explore Hindu and Buddhist culture Visiting Temples and monasteries.
Then, from Kathmandu, you will fly ( 25 minute) or drive to Pokhara ( about 6 hours). You will be enjoying sightseeing in Pokhara as well, Pokhara is the city of lakes about 200 Kms west of Kathmandu, have so much to offer you.
From Pokhara, you will take a flight to Jomsom ( the head quarter of Mustang region). Landing on airport in Jomsom will be the breathtaking moment for you. Jomsom is popular for apple, strong winds and spectacular Himalayan landscapes.
You will then trek along the Kaligandaki valley all the way to beautiful Himalayan town Kagbeni ( entry point for upper Mustang Region).
Kaligandaki valley is one of the deepest george in the world and was part of the ancient Silk route. The trek to Upper Mustang and further to Tibet was famous as trans Himalayan salt trade route, as Nepal used to bring the salts from Western Tibetan lakes.
From Kagbeni you will enter to Upper Mustang Region and trek further for Lo Manthang accompanied by Earthbound Expeditions trek crew.
Trekking in upper Mustang is a rare privilege and you will get chance to explore lifestyle, culture and tradition of true Himalayan people along with the breathtaking view of Himalayan landscapes a trip of a life time.
Earthbound Expeditions have been organizing Upper Mustang trek since 1999 with 100% safety records. One of the co-founder of the company Rajan Simkhada have been to Mustang over 7 times and he spent 37 days in Mustang with some American geologist in 1997. Come and enjoy Mustang trekking Holidays with one of the most reputed trekking company.
The landscape below Kagbeni is known as lower Mustang region and there are important sites like Muktinath, Jomsom, Marpha, Ghasa, Tatopani, Beni. These are famous little towns and the trekkers from popular Annapurna circuit trek used to stay in this small towns while completing the trek.
Nepal Govt. decided to link Beni – Lo-Manthang by a motorable roads so there is a rough road all the way to Upper Mustang. Chinese have also built a road to link Lo-Manthang with Tibet / China renectly. But our Upper Mustang trek trail will avoid the dusty road as far as possible and take you to Lo-manthang via alternative trails to enjoy the trek.
If you wish to read good books about Upper Mustang, you can find many books, but we can recommend a book written by Michel Peissel, “MUSTANG, THE FORBIDDEN KINGDOM”. published in1967. He entered Upper Mustang in 1965 as special Royal guest, as the land was Forbidden for foreigners to trek.
Another useful book about Mustang is “East of Lo Monthang” by Peter Matthiessen he describes the landscape and culture of the isolated Himalayan area, which the author and photographer explored as the first outsiders in thirty years.