trip
Plan your active adventure.View relaxed booking conditions.
5
Moderate

Traveller Rating

 

Activities
  • 11 day trek
Accommodation
  • 4 nights hotel
  • 10 nights camping
  • 2 nights lodge
Meals
  • 13 Dinners
  • 13 Lunches
  • 16 Breakfasts

17 Days$5310USD

Hit the trails with confidence

Flexible Cancellations
Stress free booking, learn more about our flexible terms

COVID-19 safety measures
Read our Covid-19 travel policy and what we're doing to keep you safe

Remote adventures
means social distancing comes naturally

Small groups only
Guided group sizes are strictly limited to maximum 16 people, average of 8-10


 
 
Trip Code: UMP

Trip highlights


  • Explore the long forbidden Kingdom of Upper Mustang, whose cultural horizons stretch to the borderlands of Tibet
  • Carefully devised itinerary follows remote trails and ancient trade routes to nomad camps, isolated settlements and Upper Mustang’s oldest gompa at Lo Gekar
  • Trek through the world’s steepest gorge and across a breathtakingly beautiful high altitude desert
  • Visit the ancient walled city of Lo Manthang, with its royal palace and traditional way of life, including the 15th century Thubchen gompa – arguably one of the world’s great rooms
  • Attend private pujas in Tsarang and Lo Manthang and gain special entrance to ancient forts and palaces
  • Mustang is horse territory. The finest way to experience it is the way the locals do by riding sure-footed Tibetan ponies (no experience necessary)

Why Book With Us

  • Trip accompanied by Margie Thomas whose wealth of personal connections provides an unsurpassed dimension to the trek
  • Complimentary use of a trek pack including quality sleeping bag, down jacket, insulated mat and receive a souvenir kit bag
  • Savour three hearty meals on trek per day freshly prepared by a team of dedicated cooks
  • Fully supported camping expedition, led by wilderness first trained guides and crew

Mustang is a wildly beautiful region of Nepal, and this trek takes you into an incredibly dramatic environment. The Kingdom of Mustang preserves some of the last vestiges of traditional Tibetan Buddhist culture. Situated in the rain shadow of the monsoon, on the border of Nepal and Tibet, tourism is still strictly controlled and limited. It’s one of the finest Himalayan destinations for both its rugged mountain landscapes and rich cultural legacy.

This newly devised itinerary follows remote trails and ancient trade routes to nomad camps, isolated settlements and Upper Mustang’s oldest gompa at Lo Gekar. These settlements, set amid fields of barley and buckwheat, and home to impressive chortens and simple monasteries, reflect the abiding Tibetan Buddhist culture. The terrain is striking; a semi-arid desert with dramatic deep ravines and rock shelves, flanked by snowy peaks. A highlight is the visit to Lo Manthang, where the King of Mustang reigned over his tiny kingdom and surveyed a world still culturally closer to the heartland of Tibet than to the markets, temples and chaos of Kathmandu. Unique Tibetan ponies are provided for you to ride on uphill hauls if you wish. Descents are completed on foot.

While on the trek you’ll have up close and personal guided tours of monasteries and explore the walled city of Lo Manthang, including meeting the restorers of the jaw-dropping Thubchen gompa. We’ll meet some interesting people like the Amchis (Tibetan healers), as well as witness the skills of the local horsemen in Charang. We’ll visit Chosar village on horseback (it’s like riding through rural Tibet 1,000 years ago) and the cave monastery Nyiphuk, Jong cave and Garfuk monastery. You'll ride traditional sure-footed Tibetan ponies (no previous horseriding experience is necessary) and see a thrilling demo of wild horse riding skills. The Chosar villagers will showcase their culture, where the ladies wear the most extraordinary traditional dress in all Upper Mustang. Their costumes and jewellery are just amazing.

We hope you can join us on this remarkable journey to one of the true gems of the Himalaya.

Meals included
in the price
Valued at USD$600

You will be met by a representative of World Expeditions and transferred to the Radisson hotel. Remainder of the afternoon at leisure. A pre-trek briefing will be given around 5pm where arrangements will be made for the distribution of your kit bag, sleeping bag and down/fiberfill jacket. Evening drinks are held in the hotel for all World Expeditions clients arriving today. Drinks and snacks will generally be served from 6:30 pm until 7:15pm, and this is a great opportunity to get acquainted with your fellow group members before heading out to dinner.

Meals:  Nil

This morning we take a flight west to Pokhara. Pokhara is Nepal's second largest town and in good weather we are greeted with sights of the entire Annapurna Range. Overnight hotel in Pokhara.

Meals:  B,L,D

This morning we take a spectacular flight to Jomsom where we will meet our trekking crew. A half day walk brings us to Kagbeni, an impressive village that is our gateway to Mustang. To pass beyond this point you need a special Upper Mustang permit. We enter Mustang by 4x4 Jeep and follow the road along east bank of the river over a series of small ridges and past Tangbe, where we encounter the distinctive black, red and white chortens that typify Upper Mustang. At Chhusang our jeep ride ends. We set camp for the evening in Chuggsang.

Meals:  B,L,D

Today we drive to Ghami stopping en-route in Samar. Overnight Lodge in Ghami

Meals:  B,L,D

We meet our Tibetan ponies today and avenues of poplar trees and fields of barley mark our trail as we head to Nyi La (pass). At 4050m this is the highest point of the trek thus far and offers fantastic views both south towards Annapurna and further into Mustang. We descend to the Qumona Khola and pass a spectacular series of mani walls to the village of Tsarang with its huge white dzong and red gompa. On arrival in Tsarang we will meet Tsewang Jonden Bista, the nephew of the Last King of Mustang. Tsewang who was born and bred in Tsarang has an in-depth knowledge of the local customs and traditional practices and because of his connections you’ll have a royal insight into the region and access to places and people many tourists could only imagine. Overnight camping.

Meals:  B,L,D

Today we leave Tsarang and head north towards the Nomad trail. We will visit Lo Gekar Monastery on route which was built by Padmashambhava during 8th Century and then we will climb to Marang (Chogo) La at 4200m. Overnight Camping.

Meals:  B,L,D

You will be on nomad trail towards Lo Manthang (approx 4 hour ride). Lo Manthang is situated on a plateau and the white washed walls enclose around 150 homes, gompas and a palace. Overnight camping.

Meals:  B,L,D

We’ve allowed two full days to explore the walled city of Lo Manthang. Meet some interesting people like the Amchis (Tibetan healers). Witness a performance of the mask dances from the Teji festival, especially organised for our group. (Teji is revered as a harbinger of hope and peace and based on the myth of a deity named Dorje Shunu (Vajrakila).) Visit Chosar village on horseback and the cave monastery Nyiphuk, Jong cave and Garfuk monastery. See a cultural showcase at Chosar village, where the ladies wear the most extraordinary traditional dresses in all Upper Mustang. If time permits we’ll ride and walk up to Khechoe Dzong, where as well as seeing the ruins of the 1st castle built by Amepal – the first King of Mustang – you can see all the way to the Tibetan border. Overnight camping.

Meals:  B,L,D

Today we depart Lo Manthang and head south-east. The morning walk will start with a steady climb up to Lo La (3950m). From here you will have a spectacular view back at Lo Manthang and the surrounding area. Shortly after we leave the road once more as we walk toward the Dhi La (3950m) before descending into a beautiful canyon where we will find the village of Dhi. From Dhi we will follow the Punyung Khola past many more beautiful cliffs to Yara. Overnight camping.

Meals:  B,L,D

This morning we'll walk to Luri Gomba (approx 2-3 hours), and return to Yara in the afternoon. Overnight camping.

Meals:  B,L,D

This morning we cross the Punyng Khola and start a gradual climb for an hour or so to a view point where we will have views back to Yara village. From here it is a gradual descent to the Dechyang Khola where we may be lucky enough to spy the beautiful peaks of Nilgiri and Dhaulagiri. We cross the Dhechyang Khola, and after enjoying lunch from another great vantage point, we will descend to another plateau and follow the trail on to Tanggye. Overnight camping.

Meals:  B,L,D

This morning we cross the Tangge and Yak Kholas before ascending once more along a fantastic trail with gorgeous views in front and behind us - be sure to stop every once and a while to soak them in! Tonight we will make camp in an area used by local herdsmen to graze their livestock when conditions allow. Overnight camping.

Meals:  B,L,D

As is often the case, what goes up must inevitably come down. Today we make our descent to Chhusang, gradual at first as we follow the ridge line towards the Kali Ghandaki, on route the views of the surrounding area are bound to be as good as any other section of our journey. After approximately 3 hours and with Chhusang in view, we make a rapid descent back to where is all began. After lunch, we farewell our trekking crew and Tibetan ponies and board our vehicles to Jomson by 4x4 Jeep. Overnight Lodge.

Meals:  B,L,D

This is a fantastic way to conclude our journey. The spectacular flight down the Kali Gandaki defies description. The huge mountains of the Annapurna and Dhaulagiri ranges tower above us as we retrace the valley we trekked 2 weeks ago. At Pokhara we board another aircraft for yet another spectacular mountain flight, this time along the face of the Himalaya past the Annapurna, Manaslu, Ganesh and Langtang ranges. On arrival in Kathmandu we transfer to our hotel.

Meals:  B

We have set aside a full day to explore Kathmandu at your leisure. A half day sightseeing tour can be booked on request at an additional charge - approx $35AU

Meals:  B

Your trip concludes this morning after breakfast. You will be transferred to the airport for your onward arrangements

Meals:  B


Map

Elevation

The map and elevation chart are for illustrative purposes only and meant to provide general guidelines.


Inclusions

  • 16 breakfasts, 13 lunches, 13 dinners including all meals on trek valued at USD$600
  • airport transfers
  • expert bilingual guide
  • fight Kathmandu/Pokhara/Jomsom/Pokhara/Kathmandu valued at US$540
  • special permit to Upper Mustang US$550
  • group medical kit
  • good quality accommodation in Kathmandu and Pokhara on a twin share basis
  • single tents supplied on the trek (if required). We cannot guarantee single rooms at lodges on the trek (2 nights). This will be on a twin share basis.
  • use of a World Expeditions trek pack which includes a quality sleeping bag, down or fibre fill jacket and insulated mat (valued at over US$500)
  • souvenir World Expeditions kit bag
  • private transportation
  • all park entrance fees
  • porters to carry all personal and group equipment
  • porter's insurance
  • site entry fees
  • entry ticket to Monasteries in Lo Manthang
  • trip accompanied by Margie Thomas

  • lunch & dinner in Kathmandu
  • bottled water, aerated & alcoholic drinks
  • items of a personal nature such as phone calls, laundry, etc.
  • tips
  • international flights
  • airport and departure taxes
  • visa
  • travel Insurance
  • please allow US$50 for monastery visits and donations in upper Mustang

About Your Leader

The trek will be led by one of our local expert leaders. Also escorting the group will be Margie Thomas, who has undertaken all number of treks in Nepal and the Indian Himalaya, including this one, five times. In August 2013 Margie accompanied Lonely Planet author Stan Armington on a trek to Upper Mustang, and within a year had returned for a second visit. It was these extraordinary journeys and their many experiences that inspired her to devise this trek to Lo Manthang. After the success of this trip in previous years, Margie is looking forward to returning with this newly devised route in 2022. She is keen to share her passion for this unique corner of the Himalaya and its people.


Departure dates

* Guaranteed status denotes minimum trip numbers have been met, however the trips operation will be subject to there being no COVID-19 restrictions or other government travel advisories. Please contact us for further information.


Notes

1
Prices valid up to 31/12/2021. Price may increase after this date subject to local inflationary pressures on operational cost. You will be notified accordingly if this should occur.

Dates or itinerary don't fit?

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Total Priceper person from

$5310USD

Your trip price includes:

  • Meals valued at USD$600
  • Internal flight valued at USD$512
  • Park Fees valued at USD$500
Options & Supplements*
    *Prices listed are per person

Essential Information

Ready to book? Make sure you download and read the detailed Upper Mustang: Hidden Tibetan Kingdom Pony Trek trip notes which contains all the essential information you need to know before booking. Once you’ve booked, we will supply you with a Pre-Departure document which contains a detailed gear list and other important information to help you prepare for your adventure ahead.


Trip reviews


Why travel with us

Award Winning Adventures

Enhancing your journey with authentic experiences, genuine cultural exchange and real exploration are the focal points on all of our adventures. In 2019, we were crowned by our peers as the best in adventure travel at The Travel Awards in Sydney.

Thoughtful Travel

Responsible travel is at the heart of every program we offer as a fundamental and long held philosophy. When you book one of our 100% carbon offset adventures you’re supporting true sustainability in the protection of local communities, natural environments and wildlife.

Ultimate Value

 When you book one of our adventures, you will receive quality services at the best prices with plenty of inclusions. There are no hidden costs, single travellers don’t pay more and you’ll enjoy many ‘extra touches’ that ensure your holiday is excellent value for money.

Positive Impact Travel

By joining this trip you are directly supporting positive impact projects in line with the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

We’ve offset the carbon emitted by this trip by purchasing credits that support important projects that address the UN’s seventeen SDGs, like reducing poverty, affordable and clean energy, reducing hunger, clean water and climate action.

Proceeds from this adventure purchase carbon credits through the world’s largest and most awarded carbon project developer, South Pole, which are invested into projects accelerating the transition to renewable energy sources in developing countries.

Supported projects are based on internationally recognised standards and are third-party audited. They entail a series of positive impacts on the ground, which benefit local communities and ecosystems, that are aligned with the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

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