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Trekking in Nepal > Mustang (Lo-Manthang)

The name Mustang refers to the arid Tibet -like region at the northern end of the Kali Gandaki, lying beyond the Annapurna and Dhaulagiri. Mustang has been described as desert in the mountain. Mustang offers a truly exceptional opportunity to explore an area rich in ancient tradition and mythology. Trekking to this region is worthwhile for those who want to experience the hospitality of the people living in this remote region. The culture and the scenery of this region are similar to Tibet. This land is a perfect destination where ample scope is offered for visiting Buddhist Monasteries. Upper Mustang consists of two distinct regions the southern region with five villages inhabited by people related to the Manangis and the northern region (the ancient kingdom of Lo) where the language culture and traditions are almost purely Tibetan.

A trek to this region inspires divine imaginations in the heart and soul of all who come within its magical range. Though the final destination of this trek is lo-Manthang, a side trek to Damodar kund, a holy Shrine for Hindus, can be made. This trek begins from Jomson- accessible by air, Pokhara-accessible by road or Beshisahar- accessible by road. Trek starting from Besisahar includes Annapurna circuit.

Mustang was only opened to trekkers in 1991. The Department of Immigration issues only a small number of special permits, to protect the local Tibetan traditions from outside influence as well as to protect the environment. This semi-autonomous region with strong Tibetan influence was described by Tilman as a "fascinatingly ugly country, the more fascinating for being so little known." Indeed, the trek to Lo Manthang is through an almost treeless barren landscape, along a steeply undulating rocky trail, from which there are panoramic views of Nilgiri, Annapurna, Dhaulagiri and a range of other soaring peaks.

Trek Facts

Duration of trekking : 15 days

Grade : Moderate / Hard

Type of Trek : Camping

Recommended season : Spring / Autumn / Winter

Trekking starting point : Pokhara

Trekking ending point : Pokhara

Maximum height : 4000 m.

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