Mustang & Upper Mustang – Nepal’s new cultural haven:
- A new ‘fair-weather’ road permits adventurous travellers to more easily discover the secret world of Mustang.
- Culturally intact; the Upper Mustang region is a fully autonomous region inside Nepal & the perfect substitute for Tibet.
- Formerly the Kingdom of Lo, Upper Mustang has its own Royal Family, language, religion, culture & its own cuisines.
- Bordering Tibet with the eastern high Himalaya as your backdrop Mustang is best visited March-May and OCT-NOV.
Questions & Solutions:
How do I get to Mustang region in Nepal?
Fly to Nepal’s capital Kathmandu where you will ideally need to spend a few days/nights before flying domestically west to Pokhara. We advise driving by SUV/4WD from Pokhara into the Mustang region, via the villages of Kalopani and Marpha. Lower Mustang is part of Nepal and Upper Mustang is still an autonomous region within Nepal. Flying from Pokhara to Jomson (v.v.) is an option but best to avoid the monsoon months of late May-early SEP.
Our Bhutan & Beyond ‘Mustang Private Tour in Nepal’ itinerary will give you all the details.
Where is the autonomous Kingdom of Lo in Nepal?
The ancient Tibetan Kingdom of Lo is now called Upper Mustang, located very close to the Tibetan border. Lo became ‘Upper Mustang’ in 1992. Before then it was a restricted zone. It is still a totally autonomous region inside of Nepal ,with its own Royal Family, laws, customs, language, religion, dress and cuisine. Lo is not a large area and consists of the capital and about 8 smaller villages.
What is the best time to visit the Mustang region of Nepal?
Although Mustang region is in a ‘rain-shadow’, and doesn’t receive much rain during Nepal’s monsoon (late MAY to early SEP), it is still recommended to consider travel only in the months of MAR-MAY and OCT-NOV. These months will allow for better driving conditions on the new gravel road and also enable travellers the option to fly in/out of Jomsom at safer times, when air travel is less likely to be distrupted.
Are there any festivals in Mustang region of Nepal?
The 3-day Tiji Festival is held annually in Upper Mustang town of Lo Manthang in mid-May. In 2024 the festival date is 06-08 May. The Tiji Festival promoteds ‘world peace’. There is a USD150 per person surcharge to attend the festival and early bookinmgs are essential.
What type of accommodation is available in Mustang region of Nepal?
The accommodation options in Mustang are in either standard class tourist lodges or local tea-houses. Private bathrooms are usually available. Luxury is coming but we’ll tackle that in a future post.
Article by James Irving – Bhutan & South Asia Travel Expert.
James has worked in the travel industry for over 40 years & has been involved in the leisure, corporate, group, sport, incentive & wholesale travel genres.
James loves rugby union, and keenly supports the Queensland Reds and the Australian Wallabies.