Lo Manthang La region trek is one of the preserved destinations, as it was long restricted for tourists to travel. The trekking in the region is all about hiking through almost treeless barren landscape and a barren moonscape of eroded sandstone pillars and discontinuous moraine terraces, which together present a colorful mosaic made up principally of earthen reds, yellows and brown color mosaic. Trekking to the area has been one of the most popular trekking destinations in later days in Nepal. The trekking to Lo Manthang is to have trekking in the very heart of Mustang, it is relatively easy and the permitted trekking route.
Lo- Manthang La TrekkingThe trekking to the region is the most mysterious and least known among the tourists, where one can explore a weird and wonderful landscape, colored by natural earth pigments - reds, yellows, browns and blues. It is really a picturesque like a white painted villages and Tibetan monasteries, which set against a backdrop of the distant snow-capped peaks of the Himalayas. No doubt that you will have an unforgettable journey to this heart once forbidden Kingdom.
The trekking to Lo Manthang region begins from Pokhara, where one can reach either by flight or bus from Kathmandu. From Pokhara, the trail passes through the small villages, terraced hillsides, rhododendron and bamboo forests, ascending to Ghorapani and Poon Hill for splendid dawn views of Dhaulagiri and Annapurna. At Tatopani--famous for its hot springs, we enter the spectacular Kali Gandaki river valley, the deepest gorge in the world. The mighty Kali Gandaki River passes between the mountains of Annapurna 1 and Dhaulagiri, both over 8000 m high. Kali Gandaki valley was once the main trading route with Tibet.
The lodges and tea-houses here is well developed. Along the route of Chaile, we pass Gheling, Drakmar and finally reach Lo Manthang (4,000 m) and visited to the area and also a village, where Thakali ethnic community inhabit in the area, is renowned for their hospitality and for being obliging hosts. Our trail follows the Kali Gandaki river valley from the Hindu lowlands in the south to the Buddhist villages and people in the upper valley. From Tukche, we head off the main trail and head to the spectacular Dhaulagiri icefall, from where we can have superb views of the icefall and across the deep valley to Annapurna. Subsequently, we continue to the north and finally we reach to the Mustang, where we make trips to the area and explore the places lying alongside and descend down to Muktinathfamous temples and make excursion to the base of Thorung La Pass and descend down to Jomsom and we catch flight to Pokhara and fly back to Kathmandu.
Day 01:Arrival in Kathmandu
Day 02:Sightseeing of Kathmandu Valley
Day 03:Fly to Pokhara
Day 04:Fly to Jomsom & Trek to Kagbeni [2780m]
Day 05:Trek to Chhuksang [2920m]
Day 06:Trek to Samar [3290m]
Day 07:Trek to Geling [3440m]
Day 08:Trek to Ghami [3460m]
Day 09:Trek to Charang [3490m]
Day 10:Trek to Lo Manthang [3730m]
Day 11:In & around Lo Manthang
Day 12:Trek to Lo Gekar
Day 13:Trek to Ghami [3460m]
Day 14:Trek to Chhuksang [2920m]
Day 15:Trek to Jomsom [2710m]
Day 16:Fly to Kathmandu via Pokhara
Day 17:Depart Kathmandu
Day 01Arrival in Kathmandu It is a panoramic thrill flying into Kathmandu on a clear day. The views of snow-capped mountain peaks sprawling down below you are almost ecstatic, beginning a whole chain of memorable experiences that stay with you for a long, long time. A representative and driver from our office will meet you at the airport and escort you to your hotel. The representative will help you check into your designated hotel. At the hotel, you will be briefed about your daily activities.
Day 02Sightseeing of Kathmandu Valley Kathmandu is the historical and cultural heart of Nepal and has been a popular destination for tourists ever since Nepal opened its doors to visitors. The city presents a wonderful mix of Hinduism, Tibetan Buddhism and Western influence in the Valley. Patan and Bhaktapur, its two major neighboring cities bear immense historical, cultural and religious significances. There will be a half day guided tour to the famous & biggest Hindu shrine of Pashupatinath, the largest Buddhist stupa in Nepal Boudhanath, the 15th century Palace of 55 windows and Swoyambhunath.
Day 03Fly to Pokhara We take the short but scenic 30 minute flight to Pokhara, enjoying the views of Ganesh, Manaslu and the Annapurnas along the way. We stay overnight in Pokhara.
Day 04Fly to Jomsom & Trek to Kagbeni [2780m] We take the spectacular early morning flight to Jomsom (famous for its apples) where we will be met at the tiny airstrip by our trek crew. After some initial preparation of loads, we begin our trek to the pretty village of Kagbeni. Just out of Jomsom we cross a small suspension bridge and then walk along the riverbank of the Kali Gandaki. The trail is flat and quite barren, with craggy rocks and sand littering the trail. This makes it very easy going. We will get magnificent views of huge peaks such as Dhaulagiri, Tukuche and Nilgiri, whilst to the south can be seen the entire Annapurna massif. Kagbeni with its narrow alleyways and tunnels, irrigation canals, fields of wheat and barley and a large red Gompa, give us a preview of scenes that we would come across in Upper Mustang. At the north end of the village is the police check-post. Here we will complete our paperwork before entering this long forbidden region of Nepal.
Day 05Trek to Chhuksang [2920m] It is possible to trek right up the river valley, but we use a combination of the high trail and the riverbank pathways. The trail then widens significantly revealing an endless stretch of sand but the path is kept interesting by the passing of mule trains bearing goods from Mustang and Tibet. On the west bank of the river are some caves and Gompa Kang. Unlike most monasteries in Upper Mustang which are of the Sakyapa sect, Gompa Kang is of the Nyingmapa sect. We stop for lunch at the village of Tangbe, where we come across the first black, white and red Chortens that typify Upper Mustang. The little town is a labyrinth of narrow alleys among white washed houses, fields of buck wheat and barley and apple orchards. Nilgiri Peak continues to dominate the southern skyline. Chhuksang village is only about 2hrs walk beyond Tangbe at the confluence of the Narshing Khola and the Kali Gandaki. There are three separate parts to this village and some ruined castle walls on the surrounding cliffs. Across the river from Chhuksang are some spectacular red eroded cliffs above the mouths of some inaccessible caves.
Day 06Trek to Samar [3290m] There is a distinct change here, not only in the topography, but also in the culture, lifestyle and people, and the settlements become more scattered, smaller and more basic. The people of Lo or Mustang practice agriculture. But due to lack of rain and fertile soil, cultivation is limited to sheltered plots of land. This spots the brown landscape with patches of green. Continuing north, we reach the river. A steel bridge spans the river just in front of a tunnel and north from here the Kali Gandaki becomes impassable by foot. The trek now leaves the valley and climbs steeply up a rocky gully to the village of Chele. Watch out for the ferocious Tibetan mastiffs here, which are chained to many of the houses. From Chele you climb a steep spur and then continue ascending along the side of a spectacular steep canyon to a pass. Beyond the pass we descend on a pleasant trail to Samar, situated in a grove of poplar trees. This is a major place to stop for horse and mule caravans.
Day 07Trek to Geling [3440m] We climb above Samar to a ridge and then descend into a large gorge past a Chorten before entering another valley filled with juniper trees. We then cross a stream and after climbing to a pass, we descend along a ridge to Shyangmochen, a tiny settlement with a few tea shops. Nearby is Rangbyung, a cave containing stalagmites which have formed in the shape of Chorten and one of the holiest places in Mustang. The trail climbs gently from Shyangmochen and we enter another huge valley before descending to Geling, with its extensive fields of barley. Like in all settlements of Mustang, the white and ochre-painted houses in Geling are constructed using mud and stones. The roofs are made of twigs, straw and a mixture of mud and pebbles.
Day 08Trek to Ghami [3460m] From Geling, the trail climbs gently through fields, up the center of the valley, passing above the settlement of Tama Gun and an imposing Chorten. We then begin a taxing climb across the head of the valley to the Nyi La [3840m]. The descent from the pass is quite gentle and about half an hour further on we come to a trail junction; the right trail is the direct route to Charang, the left trail leads to Ghami. Ghami is a large white-washed village sheltered by overhanging cliffs.
Day 09Trek to Charang [3490m] Today’s walk is through perhaps the driest part of Mustang, and much of our energy will be spent negotiating the loose, dry soil. However, the magnificent views of the countryside, from the gentle contours of the north to the rugged mountains in the east and west, more than compensates for the hard climb. Finally, we come to Charang, a large spread-out village at the top of the Charang Chu canyon. At the eastern end of the village are a huge dzong [fortress] and a red gompa which houses an excellent collection of statues and thangkas.
Day 10Trek to Lo Manthang [3730m] 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.
Day 11In & around Lo Manthang Today, you are free to explore the fascinating city of Lo Manthang. The city contains about 150 houses, as well as residences for its many lamas. There are four major temples within the city 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.
Day 12Trek to Lo Gekar We begin our return journey from Lo Manthang, taking the upper highland route. 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.
Day 13Trek to Ghami [3460m] We continue our journey on the highland route, crossing alpine meadows before dropping down a steep eroded gully to Dhakmar for lunch. After lunch, we walk through the pretty valley, climb to a ridge and descend from there back to Ghami.
Day 14Trek to Chhuksang [2920m] Now we must retrace our route back over the Nyi La to Chhuksang.
Day 15Trek to Jomsom [2710m] It's a long and sad final day, passing back through Kagbeni to Jomsom where we end our trek. It's now time for us to take a nice hot shower. In the evening, we celebrate with the Sherpas and porters, whom we have come to know so well over the last 2 weeks.
Day 16Fly to Kathmandu via Pokhara We take a spectacular early morning flight along the Kali Gandaki gorge to Pokhara and catch a connecting flight back to Kathmandu.
Day 17Depart Kathmandu Our Nepalese support team will take you to the airport for your flight home. On the other hand, if you prefer to stay longer, you can go for short tours such as game drive at National parks, rafting, Tibet tours, mountain biking etc).