The Annapurna Circuit to Upper Mustang Trek is very difficult to explain it yet mysterious and naturally gifted and many know as a hidden kingdom of Nepal. This hiking trail combines two different trekking routes of Annapurna: Annapurna Circuit and Upper Mustang.
Annapurna Circuit to Upper Mustang Trek Highlights
- Mysterious Geography of Annapurna Region
- Ancient Monasteries and Hundreds of Caves
- The forbidden kingdom of Lo Manthang
- Lifestyles of Tibetan People and classic culture
- 3840 m higher from sea level
- Exciting route and rocky trails
- UNESCO World Heritage Site
- Stunning view of landscapes, Mountain and Hills
- The Deepest Kaligandaki gorge
- Muktinath Temple
Annapurna Circuit to Upper Mustang Trek winds across the Annapurna Region with Upper Mustang trek and takes you to Lo’s Secret Empire, Upper Mustang. The trek goes from sub-tropical through alpine to arid or semi-desert to Tibetan topography, through various forms of topographical circumstances.
Annapurna Circuit to Upper Mustang Trek Offering an incredible view of Annapurna and Dhaulagiri, this trek gives you the opportunity to cross the heart-riding Thorang La Pass (5416 m) and the Kingdom of Lo Upper Mustang, making it the classic and most popular trekking trails in Nepal.
Annapurna Circuit to Upper Mustang Trek is an exceptional teahouse trek that gives us plenty of time to spend in villages where people belong to various ethnic groups and explore their culture and lifestyles.
We will walk down to Kagbeni through Muktinath and head towards Upper Mustang after making our way via Thorang La Pass. You need to have two permits for that trek. Around fifteen years ago, Upper Mustang was opened to Non-Nepali trekkers for exploration. Upper Mustang is one of the most conserved regions of Nepal. Even today this is restricted area trekking of Nepal; the trekkers need a special trekking permit by a government recognized travel agency.
The trekkers will enjoy walking up to Upper Mustang which is a little Tibetan residence in Nepal. Upper Mustang people are strongly influenced by Tibet and are practicing Tibetan Buddhism. The trek begins with a long drive from Dharapani to Kathmandu. A perfect way to explore the Annapurna Region is Annapurna Circuit Trek with Upper Mustang. This trek will take you to many spectacular deep gorges, High Mountain Pass, Temples, Monasteries, and beautiful Annapurna Area and villages of Upper Mustang.
Why Annapurna Circuit Trek with Upper Mustang?
One of the longest walks in the area of Annapurna is the Annapurna Trek with Upper Mustang. This hike is ideal for nature lovers and especially for people who want to remain in the beauty of nature for a very long time. This walk will allow you to explore the whole of the region of Annapurna. — type of topographical, natural, and cultural circumstances, which this area offers, can be explored. With just one hike to the Little Tibet in Nepal, you can complete the Annapurna and Upper Mustang tour.
Upper Mustang Special permit Cost
Upper Mustang is among the world’s best trekking destinations. Until 1992 the area was limited to international tourists. The trekkers do need special trekking permit to enter this area until recently. You have to pay USD 500 for 9 nights and 10 days, and an additional USD 50 per day for the special trekking permits. Besides that, you have to carry Annapurna Conservation Area permit as well. The ACAP makes costs USD 20 for SAARC residents and USD 30 for people outside the SAARC countries.
Up on arrival in Kathmandu, we will welcome you at the airport then transfer to you hotel. Evening welcome dinner with cultural show.Overnight at hotel.
Having breakfast then we heading to a scenic drive to Beshisahar via the Prithivi Highway. From Beshisahar we drive to Syange by local jeep. While driving we will have many chances to observe rural people & various cultures along the highway. From Syange we trek to Jagat. Overnight at guesthouse.
Heading to Dharapani.After breakfast start the working through jungle after we left Chyamje from Chyamje the trail goes bank of Marshyangdi river mostly climbing before arrive in Tal from here, we enter Manang district trail continues through barley, rice, potato fields and pine forests past the village of Kodo taking us to Dharapani, which is one of the big villages in the Manang valley. O/N at Guest house.
Wake up early in the morning then head to Chame.Today The trail climbs along the mule track through in and fir forest and then follows the river for a time amongst the higher oak and maple trees. On the way you will have spectacular views of views of major Himalayan peaks. Overnight at guesthouse.
We will first pass the older part of Chame and climb up to Telekhu at 2840 meter and continue with a long pleasant and mostly level walk through the forest to Brathang, which lies at 2950 meter. After the trail rounds a bend here we will see the first view of the dramatic Paungda Danda rock face, a tremendous curved slab of rock rising more then 1500 meter from the river. We will cross back to the south bank of the Marsyangdi on a suspension bridge at 3080 meter and then make a long gentle climb over a ridge through blue pine forests. After this the trek will be reasonably level as it heads to the upper part of Manang valley to Pisang. This town marks the beginning of the region known as Nyesyang, the upper portion of the Manang district (5 hrs).O/N at lodge.
Heading to Manang.Today our trek will slowly climb up to the Tibetan-style village of Bryaga at 3500 meter following the valley floor. At Bryaga we will see houses stacked one atop the other, each with an open veranda formed by a neighbour’s rooftop. The gompa, perched on a high crag overlooking the village, is the largest in the district and has an outstanding display of statues. O/N at Lodge
For our body to acclimatize we spend this day exploring Manang , early morning we hike up to Gangapurna Lake and Base Camp spend the day admiring Annapurna III, Tilicho, Pisang and Chulu Peaks ,roam around Manang Village and Monasteries.during the afternoon we may visit the Himalayan Rescue Association in Vraja village where we will be briefed about acute Mountain Sickness., its symptoms and preventions
After a day in and around Manang, acclimatizing to the high elevation, and allowing our bodies time to rest and get used to the environment, From Manang we cross a stream and climb up to Tenki village then head out of Marshyangdi valley northwest up Jar Sang khola valley .the trail ascends slowly as we head northward. we will pass a few pastures and juniper trees . Following the trail we will pass though a small village called Gunsan with houses made of flat mud roof and then pass pastures with yaks and horses. After crossing a small river on a wooden bridge,we make our way up the spectacular valley to an open, peaceful meadow known as Yak Kharka
Leaving Yak Kharka, you climb gradually to a ridge before descending to the headwaters of the Marsyangdi and crossing via a covered wooden bridge. After a short ascent up the mountain path on the right bank, you follow a narrow trail across an unstable spree slope and then descend to Thorung Phedi.
Today is a long trek starting before sunrise at maybe 04:00 hrs to reach the pass by 09:00/10:00 hrs at the latest, as otherwise weather conditions will greatly affect the journey. We cross over at an altitude of 5416m so can be exposed to strong winds if crossing too late. Local people have used this trail for hundreds of years to bring herds of sheep and yaks in and out of Manang. Thus the trail, while often steep, is well defined and easy to follow. Snow can block the pass at any time of the year if there has been an unseasonable storm. It takes from four to six hours from Thorung Phedi to the pass, but the many false summits mean the climb seems to go on for ever.At the Thorung La pass, with its traditional prayer flags and stone cairn we will have outstanding views. You can see the Annapunas, Gangapurna and Khatung Kang, a heavily glaciated peak. Amazingly there is a teashop here on top of the pass at 5416 meter. From here we start a long descend of about 1600 meter with outstanding views of Dhaulagiri mountain standing alone in the distance across the valley. After the trail becomes less steep we will enter grassy fields and cross meadows to our final destination of Muktinath, which means place of Nirvana and is home to the Muktinath temple as well as several monasteries. It is said that all sorrows you feel are relieved when visiting the Temple, which is a scared pilgrimage site to both Hindus and Buddhists. The main pilgrimage normally takes place in September. The Temple is dedicated to Lord Vishnu and has 108 waterspouts around it from which Holy water pours. Another attraction nearby is the Jwala Mai Temple and this contains a spring and an eternal flame fed by natural underground gas (9 hrs)
You now begin the trek descent down from Muktinath and get the kagbeni This is a large town, headquarter of the Mustang region; it is also a major village on the Kaligandaki area linking the age old Trans-Himalayan Salt Trade route to Tibet. In may visit an interesting wind swept villages situated on the main age old Trans Himalayan salt trade route to Tibet via Upper Mustang area. O/N at Lodge.
Kagbeni to Chele Actually, Kagbeni is the entry point to upper Mustang. From Kagbeni, trail leads up the east bank of Kali Gandaki and climbs over many ridges as it head north. After, that, through the interesting cave, Gompa crossing place of Tangbeegetation is almost non- – existent except for small shrubs and thorn bushes. The Kaligandaki canyon is awe-inspiring. However, the trail is kept lively with several passing mule trains and horsemen bearing wares from after. This day is uphill, quite steep at times up to the little village of Tangbe 2900m where we stop for lunch. Then after the path flattens out up to Chusang a fairly large settlement inhabited mostly by a mixed ethnic group of Gurungs, Thakalis and some families from the land of Lo. There is a small Buddhist Gompa constructed out of stone and mud across the river, which can only be reached during the colder months when water is low. By itself Chusang is a very interesting village with narrow covered alleys running through the cente, Chhuksang 5/6 hours. Overnight at Lodge.
The trail widens significantly an en Chusang-Samar (3050 m) approx.,4 hrs
Having entered this long and secluded valley one feels also a distinct change, not only to topography but there is a world of difference in culture, lifestyle and landscape. Settlements are more scattered, smaller and basic. The people of Lo or Mustang practice agriculture but because of the lack of the rain and fertile soil, cultivation is in sheltered plots of land making the landscape of a pattern of brown with scattered patches of shaded greens. A little ahead of Chusang we cross a small bridge across the Mustang Khola River, across which is colorful little village called Chaili. The trail then veers northwest along steep lines right up to the village of Samar, out campsite, making it a tough four hours walk. Samar is a very old and small village situated amongst a grove of trees with a stream running through the middle.
As in all desert lands, settlements in Mustang are in oasis village most houses are constructed out of mud and stones with roof cast out of twins, straw and a mixture of mud and pebbles. The trail descends crossing couple of mountain streams followed by a fairly flat stretch of two hours before we arrive into a wide valley. The Gelling village is located an hour walk away to the right of the main trail and in a valley between two hills. North of the village lies a Buddhist Gompa, which, though new contains exquisite wall paintings.
At the place of Geling, the trail climbs gently through field up the centre of the valley; it passes above Tama Gaon and its imposing Chorten. After crosses Tangmar Chu River, with a short climbing enters Charang (3490m). Walking time takes about 5/6 hours, Overnight at Lodge.
Lomanthang is the capital city of upper Mustang. We will spend part of the morning exploring the interesting village of Charang and its large monastery, before setting out for Lo Manthang. We climb gently above the valley to a large isolated Chorten that marks the boundary between Charang and Lo Manthang. The trail then broadens and eventually we get our first view of the walled city of Lo Manthang. The city has only one entrance so we circumambulate the wall to the gate on the north-east corner’s/N at Lodge
Today, you are free to explore the fascinating Village of Lo Manthang. The city contains about 150 houses, as well as residences for its many lamas. There are four major temples within the village and one of these, Champa Lhakang, contains a huge clay statue of Buddha as well as elaborates mandalas painted on the walls. The king’s palace is an imposing building in the center of the city and is occupied by the current King and Queen. Although his duties are largely ceremonial, the King is respected by the people. Throughout the kingdom, the villagers continue to seek his advice regarding many issues. It is possible to hire horses to visit these valleys, but this short tour will incur extra costs./N at Lodge.
We begin our return journey from Lo Manthang, taking the upper highland route.
Today the trail climbs steadily to a pass marked by a cairn, offering a last glimpse of Lo Manthang. The trail contours across the head of a valley and crosses another ridge, then drop into another large desolate valley. After ascending to the valley floor, the route heads to the right, up the center of the valley to it head. Cross a ridge at 4070 meters & traverses across the heads of two more valleys to an indistinct pass. Cross the pass to some meadows & a stream. The trail then makes a long rocky descent down a ravine to a grassy valley where LO Geker is situated in a grove of large trees alongside a stream. This highland route offers dramatic views of Lo Manthang and the Charang Valley, with snow clad peaks in the background. Just past the settlement of Lo Gekar, we reach the oldest monastery in Mustang, the Ghare Gompa. over night at LO Geker.
Climb to a ridge the across a valley to cairn and a pass 200 meters above Lo Geker. The route crosses some alpine meadows to a crest, and then drops down a steep eroded gully to the upper part of the village of Tahmar “Red Crag”. A large stream meanders through this village, making this a particularly pretty valley. Most of the surrounding hills are pastel shades of Grey & yellow, but a huge red fluted cliff provides a dramatic contrast. The trail descends alongside the stone walls and fields of the extensive village, then climbs to a ridge. It is a short descent to Ghami at 3550 meters. Ghami is a large village of whitewashed houses situated above hectares and hectares of fields. Visit the Gompa in Ghami.
From Ghami, follow the direct route to the Nyi La, climbing to a cairn on a ridge and then contouring upwards to meet the trail from Charang. Continue to the pass and descend steeply into the Gelling to an isolated teahouse and descends gently to the three houses of Tama Gung. A steep set of switchback leads to a stream, then the trail climbs to a huge painted chorten. The trail rejoins the Gelling trail near the ridge, just below a chorten and the remainder of the days is on already traveled trails to Samar.
Today is the same way that you already had. The trail passes through Chusang & other major villages like Tangbe. After Tangbe the trail still continues through the bank of Kaligandaki River as well as the windy landscapes & reaches to Kagbeni.over night at Kagbeni.
This is a large town, headquarter of the Mustang region; it is also a major village on the Kaligandaki area linking the age old Trans-Himalayan Salt Trade route to Tibet. In may visit an interesting wind swept villages situated on the main age old Trans Himalayan salt trade route to Tibet via Upper Mustang area. O/N at Lodge.
Today we fly from Jomsom-Pokhara then leisure day in Pokhara
We head to Kathmandu. its takes via Tourist bus 7 hours and via flight 25 min. Overnight at Kathmandu.
Nepal adventure pilgrimage Trek We will transfer you airport as per your flight time.