Mustang - The Forbidden Kingdom

A superb trek in the fascinating kingdom of Mustang in Nepal




From $3,540 Land only

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Holiday Overview


  • Walk out to Muktinath via the east side of the Kali Gandaki River
  • Spectacular views of the Annapurnas and Dhaulagiri
  • A full day to explore the unique walled city of Lo Manthang
  • Kathmandu Airport transfers and all meals included

North of the Annapurnas and off-limits to travellers until the early ‘90s, the ancient and mysterious kingdom of Mustang is geographically and culturally a part of Tibet. Mustang prospered in the 15th Century, when its strategic location enabled it to dominate the salt trade between Tibet and Nepal. Its distinctive, white-painted villages, Tibetan monasteries and impressive wayside inns, a legacy of hundreds of years of cross-border trading, make Mustang a place apart, unlike anywhere else in Nepal. The landscape is different here, too - eroded clonglomerate cliffs coloured by striking earth pigments in variations of red, yellow, brown and blue, with a backdrop of the distant snow-capped peaks of the Annapurnas and Dhaulagiri. With the gradual encroachment of the jeep road into Mustang, we now have the opportunity to change and improve the way we run this amazing 2-week adventure holiday. After a flight to Jomsom beside the Kali Gandaki River, we hike for 3 days from Kagbeni to Geling, then transfer directly to the fairy-tale walled city Lo Manthang and spend a day there, exploring amongst its brightly painted houses and secret alleyways. This approach avoids protracted walking on, or within sight of, the jeep track, whilst still allowing us to see all of Mustang's important villages, chortens and distinctive scenery. However, the best is still to come, as we walk-out from Lo Manthang on the east side of the Kali Gandaki River. This 5-day trek takes us into the most interesting part of Mustang, where very little has changed almost since time began. Crossing passes up to 4200 metres and visiting a succession of remote settlements, such as Dhi, Tange and Tetang, we head southwards towards the looming presence of the Annapurna Himal. Finally arriving at the colourful pilgrimage centre of Muktinath, on the Annapurna Circuit, we take a jeep down to Jomsom to complete one of the best trekking adventures in Nepal.

Is this holiday for you?

This trekking holiday in Mustang offers generally straightforward trekking conditions on good trails. Additionally, the territory of Mustang is not high by Himalayan standards and our 4-day trekking and driving approach to the capital, Lo Manthang (3840m), followed by a rest day there, means no-one should have too much difficulty acclimatising. Thereafter, we trek out through a remote area, on village paths and shepherds' tracks, with some sections of poorly-marked trails and potentially more difficult underfoot conditions. On this second part of the trip, the maximum elevation is at 4200 metres. This is not extremely high, but trekking at this altitude does make extra physical demands on the body and it is best to adopt a slower pace than at sea level. We will be staying in lodge accommodation throughout our time in Mustang. We have 3 short days of trekking on the approach to Lo Manthang and several 6 hours days thereafter, with one longer day from Tangge to Chukksang (8 to 10 hours of walking) on the second part of the holiday.

Brief Itinerary

View in full
  • Meet at the group hotel in Kathmandu. Transfers from Kathmandu Airport are provided.
  • Fly to Pokhara with views of the Himalaya. Afternoon free to explore this charming lakeside town.
  • Fly to Jomsom in the Kali Gandaki Valley, drive to Kagbeni and trek to Chukksang (2980m).
  • Trek beside the river, cross a bridge to Chele and follow a steep trail up to Samar (3660m).
  • Contour around and trek across 2 low cols, before dropping down to Geling (3570m).
  • Transfer by 4WD vehicle into the heart of Mustang, crossing 2 further passes to Lo Manthang (3840m).
  • A day for exploring the alleyways, brightly painted houses and chortens of Lo Manthang.
  • Cross the upper Kali Gandaki and trek via Dhi and its old monastery to Yara Village (3760m).
  • Trek up to the impressive 13th century Luri Gompa (3920m) and return to overnight at Yara.
  • Trek south to cross the ridge of the Sertang Danda and descend to the village of Tangge (3240m).
  • Trek to the Lelo La (4200m) and long descent of the Siyarko Danda to Chhuksang.
  • Cross the Gyu La (4077m) with amazing Annapurna views. From Muktinath, drive to Jomsom.
  • Fly to Kathmandu via Pokhara. Free time in the afternoon and celebratory dinner at a local restaurant.
  • In Kathmandu. Half-day sightseeing tour included. Rest of the day at leisure.
  • Departure day. Transfers to Kathmandu Airport are provided.
Sun 27 Mar - Sun 10 Apr Code MUS /01/16/ Adult$3,540 Status Available Book now
Sun 01 May - Sun 15 May Code MUS /02/16/ Adult$3,540 Status Available Book now
Sun 18 Sep - Sun 02 Oct Code MUS /03/16/ Adult$3,540 Status Available Book now
Sun 09 Oct - Sun 23 Oct Code MUS /04/16/ Adult$3,540 Status Available Book now
Sun 30 Oct - Sun 13 Nov Code MUS /05/16/ Adult$3,540 Status Guaranteed Book now
The LAND ONLY dates and prices are for the itinerary joining in Kathmandu. For clients making their own flight arrangements, Kathmandu Airport is the most convenient for transfers to the group hotel. Please refer to Joining Arrangements and Transfers in the trip dossier for further details.

Flights SHOULD NOT be booked until you have received your booking confirmation and the trip is showing 'Guaranteed to Run' or 'Limited'.

BOOK WITH KE CONFIDENCE - No surcharge guarantee*

* Against Land Only services.

Map & Itinerary

The Route

  • airport
  • point
  • trip direction
  • pass
  • transfer
  • trek

Holiday Itinerary

  • Meet at the group hotel in Kathmandu. Transfers from Kathmandu Airport are provided.

    Meet at the group hotel in Kathmandu. Transfers from Kathmandu Airport are provided. Depending on your arrival time, you may have the opportunity to explore the immediate vicinity of the hotel and get acclimatised to this bustling city. Alternatively, you may prefer to recover from your journey by relaxing beside the hotel pool. KE Land Only package services begin with the evening meal. Your guide will take dinner with you and will provide an informal briefing about the days ahead.

    • Accommodation Hotel with swimming pool

    • Meals d

  • Fly to Pokhara with views of the Himalaya. Afternoon free to explore this charming lakeside town.

    We take an early morning flight to Pokhara, Nepal's second largest city. Our flight takes us on a course which runs parallel to the great chain of the Himalaya and first of all we can see the peaks of the Langtang and Ganesh groups which lie just to the north of Kathmandu. After only 20 minutes or so, we come within sight of the great twin massifs of Manaslu and the Annapurnas. These ranges, along with the shapely peak of Machhapuchare (the 'fish tail') are clearly visible from the runway at Pokhara. We check in to our hotel and have the afternoon free to wander by the lake - or sit in the garden of one of the beautiful lakeside restaurants and admire the view of the Annapurnas.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Meals bld

  • Fly to Jomsom in the Kali Gandaki Valley, drive to Kagbeni and trek to Chukksang (2980m).

    Another morning flight, this time to Jomsom. We overfly the course of the Annapurna Circuit trek and have exciting views of nearby peaks as we fly close by the ridge-top village of Ghorepani and drop down into the Kali Gandaki Valley. Heading northwards, we pass between the Dhaulagiri and Annapurna massifs, with splendid views of Dhaulagiri on the left of the plane, before we come into land on the recently resurfaced runway at Jomsom - at an altitude of 2713 metres. Our Nepalese leader may have some formalities to take care of in Jomsom, associated with our permission to travel into Mustang, while we have a quick look around. There are a variety of shops selling 'Tibetan' jewellery and handicrafts, and there is also a so-called German Bakery at Jomsom. Strictly speaking, Jomsom (and several of the villages further south) are within the area known as Mustang. But, the restricted area of Mustang does not begin until we get to Kagbeni. Hopping into jeeps for the next stage of our journey, the road takes us through the main part of the village, on the other side of the Kali Gandaki, then along the river bed. We pass the tea houses at Eklabati, where the trail from the Thorung La (Annapurna Circuit trek) reaches the valley floor. Arriving at Kagbeni, with its prominent red monastery, we can look back to the striking Nilgiri, a peak at the western end of the Annapurnas and to Dhaulagiri (8167m) on the right. Here, we meet our support crew of porters and/or poney-men and, after showing our passes at the police check-post, set on foot into Mustang. Our route drops down again onto the bed of the river and then, as we climb to cross a spur, we have our first views of the village of Tangbe ahead. The Mustang villages are particularly picturesque. The houses are usually painted white, orange, yellow or grey and quite often striped in these colours. The pigment for this paint is locally derived, from naturally occurring minerals. Below the village there are well-tended fields and orchards. At this relatively low altitude, the Mustang villagers are able to grow quite a wide range of crops - as well as superb apples. Soon after leaving Tangbe, we come within sight of the next village, Chukksang, which nestles in a bend of the Kali Gandaki, opposite an imposing red cliff. A feature of the landscape in this area is the interestingly eroded conglomerate cliffs, which often include large numbers of man-made caves. These caves were principally used as places of retreat by monks, and some of them are in very inaccessible locations - 100 metres up an apparently featureless cliff face. Overnight in Chukksang.

    • Accommodation Lodge

    • Meals bld

  • Trek beside the river, cross a bridge to Chele and follow a steep trail up to Samar (3660m).

    Leaving Chukksang, we can see the next village and our overnight stop, Chele (3100m), on a bluff above the river. Crossing the broad flood plain and then a steel bridge, we climb up to Chele, where each of the orange and white houses is topped with piles of brushwood, which are displayed as a sign of wealth. There are also Buddhist symbols in the form of chortens in the centre of the village. Leaving Chele, we climb up steeply on a ridge above Chele, to reach a pathway that is cut into the side of a yellow cliff. Across the deep gorge on the left side of the path is another village - Gyagar. As we gain height, we can look back to the towering wall of the Annapurna Massif, with the central summit of Annapurna I clearly discernible. Cresting a rise at an altitude of 3600 metres, we traverse around to the small settlement of Samar. The former importance of this route through Mustang into Tibet is clearly evidenced by the occurrence of wayside hostelries and pack-animal enclosures at each of the villages and these are particularly in evidence in Samar. Looking eastwards we can see a number of snow-capped peaks that lie to the north of the Thorung La, including Bhrikuti (6724m) with its prominent sinuous snow ridge. Overnight in Samar after a short day of trekking.

    • Accommodation Lodge

    • Meals bld

  • Contour around and trek across 2 low cols, before dropping down to Geling (3570m).

    Shortly after leaving the lovely village of Samar we cross 2 deep gullies and then climb to a prayer-flagged col. Passing a couple of isolated inns, we reach a second, higher pass, at 3900 metres, from where we have a broad panorama of the northern part of Mustang, which is notable for the bright blue, orange and white coloration of the rock. Looking back, we can still see the Annapurnas, Tilicho Peak and Nilgiri. During this holiday, we will be using the facilities at the traditional inns and lodges on our route and is some instance it will be our own cook crew who takes over the kitchen and provides our meals. Having previously catered for the trade between Nepal and Tibet, the inns and lodges in Mustang are quite often very authentic. We continue our trek around to a viewpoint, where we can look down on the village of Geling, beyond which ee can also see the Nyi La and the onward route into the heart of Mustang. We descend to our overnight halt at Geling (3570m) which has a pretty patchwork of barley fields.

    • Accommodation Lodge

    • Meals bld

  • Transfer by 4WD vehicle into the heart of Mustang, crossing 2 further passes to Lo Manthang (3840m).

    We have arranged to drive from this point to Lo Manthang, rather than to continue the trek, which in this area is compromised by the presence of the road and a scattering of vehicles that use it. Driving this part of the route still allows us to see the villages on the way, such as Ghami and Charang. We will also stop at the high points on the route, the Nyi La (4020m) and the Chinji La to admire the far-reaching views. At Ghami, for example, there is by far the most spectacular inn that we have seen yet, which includes a monastic cell and sometimes a small contingent of monks. Then, crossing a tributary below Ghami, we can look across to one of the longest continuous prayer walls in Nepal. Over 400 metres long and more than 2 metres high, it is gaudily painted in orange, yellow, blue-grey and white stripes. The backdrop for this super mani wall is a mountainside and with its extraordinary coloration mirrors that of the wall. At Charang, we stop off to see the large fortress-monastery. Then, shortly after leaving the village, we reach the huge Sungda Chorten that marks the boundary of the innermost part of Mustang, which is known as the Kingdom of Lo. At this point, snow-capped peaks on the north western margin of Mustang now come into view and we also get our first views across the wide and quite level depression - known as the Plain of Aspiration. In the centre of this high plain lies the outlandish city of Lo Manthang, a 200 metre square enclosure, surrounded by 10 metre high walls, which contains around 150 private dwellings and a number of monasteries, as well as the raja's palace. Beyond Lo Manthang itself, a number of other settlements are visible, stretching off towards the Tibetan Border. Overnight in Lo Manthang.

    • Accommodation Lodge

    • Meals bld

  • A day for exploring the alleyways, brightly painted houses and chortens of Lo Manthang.

    A day for looking around Lo Manthang and the surrounding area. There is one main gate that gives access to the interior of Lo Manthang, and the best way to get a look at the town is to climb up onto the roof of one of the inns. From the narrow streets of the town it is difficult to get a clear impression of the layout. The raja's palace is a four-storey building of mud and timber construction. Just to the north of the town there is a prominent hill that is capped by a ruined fort. From the highest point of this hill it is possible to look across Lo Manthang and back all the way to the Annapurnas - a fascinating perspective. Namgyal Monastery, which lies an hour's walk to the north-west of Lo Manthang, is another option for those who want to stretch their legs. We spend a second night at Lo Manthang.

    • Accommodation Lodge

    • Meals bld

  • Cross the upper Kali Gandaki and trek via Dhi and its old monastery to Yara Village (3760m).

    We begin our exciting 5-day walk out from Lo Manthang, with a hike across open plains and a gradual climb to the Dhi La (4100m), where we can look across the valley of the upper Kali Gandaki River and southwards towards the Himalayas. It is a steep descent to the river bed and the village of Dhi, with its patchwork of fields leading down to the river’s edge, and its old monastery. Then, after lunch, we cross the river and ascend eastwards beside a tributary stream, before climbing away from the valley to reach our overnight stop at Yara Village (3760m).

    • Accommodation Lodge

    • Meals bld

  • Trek up to the impressive 13th century Luri Gompa (3920m) and return to overnight at Yara.

    Today, we have the luxury of being able to leave our camp set up and anyone who fancies a rest or an easy day can stay at Yara. Meanwhile, away to the east amongst a range of deeply sculpted hills, there is one of the most amazing monasteries in Nepal, Luri Gompa. This makes and excellent objective for a day-hike, leading across open slopes, dotted with juniper bushes. It takes a couple of hours to reach the lower monastery building and then above that is a hillside formed of eroded pillars and cut by numerous man-made caves. The red-painted ‘Luri Cave Monastery’ can be seen, high up on the hillside. It is a steep final ascent on scree and then through a man-made tunnel to reach the entrance to this Kagyu Buddhist site, which dates from the 13th century. Inside, there are a couple of accessible chambers with colourful wall paintings. We have a picnic lunch, before returning to spend a second night in Yara.

    • Accommodation Lodge

    • Meals bld

  • Trek south to cross the ridge of the Sertang Danda and descend to the village of Tangge (3240m).

    Heading south now, on the east side of the Kali Gangaki, we cross a low col and drop down into the valley of the Dechyang Khola, another of the eastern tributaries of the main river. The riverbed here is strewn with ammonites (fossils) and a few minutes of searching will usually uncover a nice example. Sandals are needed, as we may have to ford the river on more than one occasion today. We then climb up onto the open ridge known as the Sertang Danda and contour around to cross it via an unnamed pass at around 3850 metres. Dropping down, we reach the lovely little village of Tange, set beneath a line of eroded terracotta cliffs and above the Tange Khola. The village consists of about 20 tightly clustered, white-painted houses and a picturesque group of chortens, some large and some small, all painted in stripes of orange, grey and white. Terraced and irrigated fields lie between the village and the river. We overnight at the thriving and not-too-often visited village of Tange (3240m).

    • Accommodation Lodge

    • Meals bld

  • Trek to the Lelo La (4200m) and long descent of the Siyarko Danda to Chhuksang.

    Today, we have an early start for what will be our longest day of trekking. We cross the Tange Khola at a bridge, then head upstream on the river bed for an hour or so, before beginning the long, steep climb to the Lelo La at 4200 metres. There are great views across a wild landscape to the 8000 metre peak, Dhaulagiri. We don’t have to descend far from the pass, before our guide locates the springs at Pha (4100m), a high grazing area and occasional summer-time shepherds settlement. Beyond this point, we contour around at 4000 metres elevation and have fantastic views across to the peaks on the western edge of Mustang. Gradually, we turn back towards the Kali Gandaki and find ourselves on the amazing ridge of the Siyarko Danda, which we follow this amongst typically eroded Mustangi geology, with far-reaching views, as well as breathtaking glimpses into red-ochre gorges. On some sections of today's walk we will encounter ill-defined trails. A final steep descent leads to the irrigated fields of Chukksang (3040m), another beautiful settlement, nestled amongst its terraced fields of barley and potatoes. A long day with 8 to 10 hours of walking.

    • Accommodation Lodge

    • Meals bld

  • Cross the Gyu La (4077m) with amazing Annapurna views. From Muktinath, drive to Jomsom.

    Our route today starts out through the narrow lanes of Tetang, then climbs above the village, offering a birds-eye view. Beyond a plateau area, we climb again to reach the Gyu La (4077m) after about 3 hours walking. This is a brilliant viewpoint for the Annapurna peaks, Thorung Peak, Nilgiri, Dhaulagiri and Tukuche Peak. Below us, we can see Muktinath and it will takes an hour and a half to drop down to this important pilgrimage centre. Arriving in time for a late lunch, we can then spend an hour or two sightseeing amongst Muktinath’s temples, before driving down to our overnight lodge in Jomsom.

    • Accommodation Lodge

    • Meals bld

  • Fly to Kathmandu via Pokhara. Free time in the afternoon and celebratory dinner at a local restaurant.

    We take the short and exciting internal flight to Pokhara and then catch an onward flight to Kathmandu. The remainder of the afternoon is free for sightseeing. As a part of the trip package we have included complimentary evening meals at the finest restaurants in Kathmandu on each of the nights that we stay in the city. On this first night after our trek we will certainly have a party. Overnight at the group hotel in the city.

    • Accommodation Hotel with swimming pool

    • Meals bld

  • In Kathmandu. Half-day sightseeing tour included. Rest of the day at leisure.

    This is an important contingency against the possibility of delays to the flight from Jomsom. There is an optional complimentary guided sightseeing tour of the city’s main attractions. Alternatively, you may prefer to do your own thing, especially if you have visited Kathmandu before. One of the attractions of any visit to Nepal is the chance to walk the streets of Kathmandu, which presents a fascinating mosaic of shops, cafes and restaurants, food markets and street vendors, as well as a bewildering array of colourful temples and shrines. This evening we will have a celebration ‘end of trip’ dinner in one of Thamel’s excellent restaurants.

    • Accommodation Hotel with swimming pool

    • Meals bld

  • Departure day. Transfers to Kathmandu Airport are provided.

    KE Land Only package services end after breakfast. Transfers to Kathmandu Airport are provided. There are lots of extensions that can easily be added to your holiday in Nepal. Why not pre-book a simple day-tour in the Kathmandu Valley, or a multi-day excursion to one of the important wildlife reserves at Chitwan or Bardia. Extension packages are also available to include a visit to neighbouring Tibet or Bhutan. Contact our office for details.

    • Meals b

Holiday Information

  • An experienced English-speaking KE leader
  • Kathmandu Airport transfers
  • Internal flights and transfers
  • All land transport involved in the itinerary
  • All accommodation as detailed in the trip dossier
  • All meals
  • Guided sightseeing tour of Kathmandu
  • Full trekking service including all equipment (excluding personal equipment)
  • Mustang Restricted Area fee ($500)

  • Travel Insurance
  • Nepalese Visa
  • Tips for porters and other trek staff
  • Miscellaneous expenses - drinks and souvenirs etc.

For each holiday there is a minimum number of participants required to enable it to go ahead. Once the minimum number is reached, the trip status will change from 'Available' to 'Guaranteed to run'. You can check the trip status for each departure in ‘Dates and Prices’ table. Other than in exceptional circumstances, we will not cancel a trip once it has achieved this guaranteed to run status and so you are free to proceed with your international flight booking and other travel arrangements.

All clients travelling to Kathmandu will be met at the airport by a KE representative who will arrange the transfer to the group hotel. Clients MUST provide the KE office with full details of their flights and should let us know if Kathmandu Airport transfers are not required. Hotel contact details and an emergency number will be provided with your joining instructions 3 to 4 weeks prior to departure.

The day starts early at our lodge accommodation, with a cup of tea or coffee and breakfast in the dining room. After breakfast the porters will be given their loads and will set off. We will generally reach our lunch stop after around 3 or 4 hours walking. Lunch usually takes an hour or even two and is normally a cooked meal. This is a great time for relaxing, reading and sitting in the sun. Porters catch up with the group during lunch and continue their hike to our next overnight lodge which we aim to reach by 3 or 4 p.m., well before dusk. It is usual for the afternoon’s walk to be shorter than the morning session. On arrival at the lodge, the Sherpas will make sure we have a hot drink. Dinner is a 3-course meal served in the dining room. This is a great time of day for reliving the events of the trek so far and for general socialising. After dark, the temperature quickly falls and everyone will soon be tucked up in bed.

During this trip the group will spend 3 nights in Kathmandu at a centrally-located tourist-class hotel. There is also 1 night at a comfortable hotel in Pokhara.

Whilst on trek there are 10 nights in lodges/tea houses. All accommodation is on a twin sharing basis (note that in some lodges only dormitory beds may be available). If you are travelling by yourself you will be paired up with another single client of the same sex. It is not possible to arrange single accommodation in lodges. The Nepalese trekking lodges also known as 'tea-houses' are simple, friendly and atmospheric. As they are far from the nearest road is it not surprising that they are simple establishments as everything must be carried up by porters or animals. Accommodation is basic in unheated rooms with wooden beds and foam mattress. You will need a sleeping bag. The lodges have a dining area which may or may not be heated. They also have shared washing and toilet facilities. Showers are sometimes available and these are usually cold. If warm water is available, this is derived through solar power and you will pay directly for access to warm water. Staying at the lodges is a great way to meet fellow hikers and the locals. For the hotel nights single rooms are available for a supplementry cost. Additional hotel nights in Kathmandu are also available. For hotel prices and single supplement costs please refer to the dates and prices page of the trip on our website. Hotels are subject to availability and prices may vary.

View the gallery below for images of the style of accommodation used

The food served during the trek is a mix of local and international dishes, with ingredients purchased in Nepal and cooked for us by highly trained trek cooks. The emphasis is on providing a high-carbohydrate and largely vegetarian diet, which we have found to be easily digestible at high altitude. On the trail, there is opportunity to purchase additional snacks and drinks. In Kathmandu we take our meals at the hotel or in one of the city’s excellent restaurants. All meals while on trek and in hotels are included in the trip price.

All meals are included in the trip price from dinner on day 1 to breakfast on day 15.

Approximately £250 (or the equivalent in US dollars, Euros etc.) should be allowed for miscellaneous expenses including those itemised below. You should allow approximately £50 - £60 (in equivalent Nepali rupees) for porter and trek crew tips. It is not necessary to obtain local currency prior to departure. Sterling, US Dollars and Euros are equally acceptable for exchange in Nepal. We recommend that you carry your travel money in the form of cash, since you will exchange the majority of this on the day of your arrival in Kathmandu. If you prefer not to carry all of your spending money in cash, it is possible to withdraw money from ATMs in Kathmandu using your debit or credit card. During the trek it is possible to buy snacks, chocolate, soft drinks and beer on several days. Please be aware that since everything has to be carried up by porters or animals, these items become more expensive as you gain altitude.

The Mustang Restricted Area fee of $500 is included in the holiday price.

Access to the high and remote areas of the Himalaya where our treks start is often only possible using internal flights. The changeable nature of mountain weather makes flying conditions complex. In addition, the Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal does not operate to the same standards as those of western nations and all airlines in Nepal appear on the European Commission’s list of airlines that are banned from flying into EU member states. Flying in Nepal is an acknowledged risk, and the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office travel advice provides further details which you can read on their website at: KE is mindful of its duty of care to clients travelling with us in Nepal and we were stakeholders in an independent air audit of Nepal airlines undertaken by UK tour operators during 2013. KE uses only three airlines in Nepal which were approved by this audit as safe carriers. These airlines are: Yeti Airlines, Tara Air and Buddha Air. We continue to cooperate with other tour operators to monitor aviation safety in Nepal and will ensure we remain a stakeholder in any further air safety audits. While we have taken appropriate action to try to minimise the risks of flying in Nepal, you should be aware that flying in mountainous terrain is not without any risk.

Please note that poor weather can cause delays on internal flights. If at the start of your holiday internal flights are cancelled for the day, you will spend an extra night near the airport and this may be at a hotel other than the group hotel. On the majority of trips there is enough flexibility in the trekking itinerary to make up 1 or possibly 2 lost days, but alternative arrangements must be made if internal flights are cancelled for a subsequent day. For trips that end with an internal flight out of the mountains with no alternative road access, we have included 2 nights in Kathmandu as a contingency against delay. Helicopters can sometimes fly when the scheduled fixed wing aircraft cannot. If your group is offered the opportunity to use a chartered helicopter, either flying up from or back to Kathmandu, the cost will be shared between those choosing to take this option. In the extremely unlikely event that flight cancellations cause you to miss your homeward international flight, KE will render all assistance, but cannot be held liable for any extra costs incurred. We advise you to take out suitable insurance and to keep your receipts, as you may subsequently be able to make a claim.

The group will be accompanied by an experienced English-speaking KE leader throughout the trip. Whilst on trek there will also be a full trek crew, including several Sherpas, a cook team and porters.

Tipping is the accepted way of saying thank you for good service. Tips do not form part of the wages of your porters and trek crew but they are very much appreciated. It is important to remember that tipping is voluntary and should be dependent on good service. Normally the tips are given at the end of the trek and this is best done as a group. Your trek leader will give you help and advice on this. Most groups will give the tips with a bit of ceremony (or sometimes a party) on the last evening, to mark the end of the trip. As a guide, we recommend that each group member contributes around £50 - £60 (in rupees) to these tips. At the end of a trek many people also like to donate various items of their equipment to the porters and trek staff who work so hard to make the trip a success. If you think you would like to donate equipment at the end of your trip, your trek leader will make arrangements for a fair distribution among the crew.

Your baggage on trek will be carried by porters or pack animals. The packed weight of your trek bag whilst trekking should be no more than 15kg (33 pounds). For all flights to and from STOL airstrips in Nepal, the maximum allowance for hold baggage AND hand baggage combined, is 15kg. It is essential you keep the total weight of your baggage within this limit. This weight allowance is normally strictly enforced and excess baggage will be charged. Please be aware that you will have to pay for this at check-in. It is possible to leave clothes or other items not required on trek at the group hotel.

All KE clients will receive a FREE KE trek bag.  These have been specially made to stand up to the rigours of adventure travel.  Your KE bag will be posted to you when your trip is guaranteed to run or on receipt of your booking if the trip is already guaranteed.  If you have travelled with us before and already have a KE trek bag you can select an alternative free gift in the booking process.

This holiday involves going to high altitude. During the course of your trip you will reach altitudes in excess of 3500 metres. This is not something that you should worry about; the human body is quite capable of adapting to a very wide range of altitudes, but it is important that we follow some simple rules in order to acclimatise successfully. Before coming on this holiday you should read the advice on trekking at high altitude on our website which can be viewed via the link below. You can also talk to one of our trekking experts if you have any concerns about altitude.

All nationalities need a valid passport and a current Nepalese Visa for entry into Nepal. The easiest way to get your Nepal visa is on arrival at Kathmandu Airport. Visa fees must be paid in cash. The most convenient currency to purchase Nepalese visas is US dollars, but GB pounds and Euros are also accepted. The charges for the visa depend on your length of stay (please see fee information below). Two passport photos are also needed. Photographs can be obtained at the airport but this may be time-consuming.

Nepal visa fees (Multiple Entry). 15 days: US$25, 30 days: US$40, 90 days: US$100

Note that visa fees can change without warning and we advise that you bring extra cash as a contingency.

Please note that if you are travelling to Nepal via Delhi you may also require a visa for India. This may apply even if you are not leaving the airport unless your baggage has been checked all the way through to your destination. Generally, if you use the same carrier for both legs of your journey (into Delhi and from Delhi to Kathmandu), you will not need an India Visa. Please note that the responsibility for ensuring you have the necessary visas, travel permits etc, for your chosen route of travel to the joining point, lies entirely with you. We are always happy to give advice on these requirements if you contact us.

Note that if you book a UK flight-inclusive package with KE using Jet Airways or Air India via Delhi, you will not require an India visa.

Important Notes:

For all regions of Nepal you are now required to have a permit to trek / bike. To apply for this we must have your full passport details before your departure. We recommend you also take 4 passport photographs with you to Nepal.

We require additional items for following trips:

Annapurna trips (ANS, ASL, ACL, APL, AEL, ANL, ANC, UAT), Dhaulagiri via the French Pass (DLG), and Royal Trek and Chitwan (RTC).

1 passport photograph to be sent / emailed to the KE office at least 4 weeks prior to departure.

Kanchenjunga (KAN), Mustang (MUS), Dolpo (DOL), Manaslu (MAN), Hidden Valleys of Naar and Phu (NAP), Naar to Mustang (NTM), Humla and Limi Circuit Trek (HUM), Naya Kanga and the Ganja La (NKG), Yala Peak and the Ganja La (YPGL), Tent Peak (TPK), Ramdung and Parchemo (RAM), Mera Peak, Island Peak and the Amphu Labsta (MIP), Island Peak Climber (IPC), Peaks and Passes on Nepal (MTR); Mera Peak Climb (MER); and Chulu Far East & the Tilicho La (CTL); Tabsar Peak and the Tsum Valley (TVC), Mukot Peak (MKP).

1 passport photograph plus 1 copy of the information page of your passport to be sent / emailed to the KE office at least 4 weeks prior to departure.

The following checklist should help you with your packing. As a general rule, you should always try to keep the weight of your equipment to a minimum. The packed weight of your trek bag while trekking should be no more than 15 kgs./33 lbs. For all flights to STOL airstrips in Nepal, the maximum allowance for hold baggage AND hand baggage combined, is 15 kg. It is essential you keep the total weight of your baggage within this limit. Paying for transportation of excess baggage is not normally an option on these flights. It is possible to leave clothes or other items not required on trek at the group hotel.

You must bring the following items:

  • Hiking boots
  • Sandals for river crossings
  • Socks
  • Trekking trousers / pants
  • Waterproof overtrousers / rainpants
  • Underwear
  • Baselayer shirts
  • Casual shirt and/or T-shirts
  • Fleece jacket or warm jumper/sweater
  • Waterproof jacket
  • Sunhat
  • Warm hat
  • Eyewear - Sunglasses
  • Gloves or mittens
  • Headtorch/Headlamp with batteries
  • Sun protection (including total bloc for lips, nose etc.)
  • Water bottles 1 Litre (1 Quart) x2
  • Washbag and toiletries
  • Antibacterial handwash
  • Small towel
  • Selection of dry bags (to keep trek bag contents dry)
  • Small padlock (to lock trek bag)

    Daypack (approx. 30 litres)

  • 4 or 5 season sleeping bag*
  • Warm jacket (down)*
  • Basic First Aid Kit including: A broad spectrum antibiotic, antiseptic cream, throat lozenges, diarrhoea treatment (Imodium), altitude (Diamox), painkillers, plasters (band-aids) and blister treatment, insect repellent, and re-hydration salts (Dioralite).

The following items are optional:

  • Trekking poles (recommended)
  • Training shoes /Sneakers or similar for camp use
  • Shorts
  • Long johns (thermal underwear)
  • Gaiters
  • Sleeping bag liner
  • Scarf or buff
  • Nailbrush
  • Wet wipes
  • Swimwear (for the hotel pool in Kathmandu)
  • Travel clothes
  • Camera and media
  • Repair kit – (eg. needle, thread, duct tape)


Equipment hire: Items marked * are available for hire through KE Adventure Travel. Please make all requests at least 6 weeks prior to the trip departure date. Please note all hire equipment is issued in Kathmandu. Please remember to allow room in your trek bag for these items.

The Nepalese are still traditional and conservative in the way they dress. Therefore to avoid embarrassment on both sides we recommend that you respect this and do not wear revealing clothing or sleeveless tops while visiting Nepal. Shorts are acceptable, but they should reach to just above the knee and be modest and for women it is preferable to wear trousers or a long skirt.

A passport with 6 months remaining validity at the end of your stay is generally required. The information that we provide is for UK passport holders. Please check the relevant embassy or consulate for other nationalities. It is your responsibility to ensure that you have the correct travel documents and visas for your holiday. Visa requirements and charges are subject to change without notice. If you are travelling outside the EU you should have at least 2 blank pages in your passport.

We recommend you check if you require an adaptor for your electrical items at:

It makes a lot of sense to spend some time before coming on a trekking trip getting some additional exercise. The fitter you are, after all, the more enjoyable you will find the experience. For this trip you need to be aerobically fit and also comfortable with walking up to 7 hours each day with ascents and/or descents of up to 1000 metre on some days. Although the underfoot conditions will not be found difficult for regular hill-walkers, the high altitude and dry conditions will have an effect on physical performance We would suggest that you adopt a weekly exercise regime leading up to your trip. Regular hiking in hill country is the best training but jogging, squash and swimming are also good for developing cardio vascular fitness and stamina. Before departure, we suggest that you try to fit in a number of long walks in hilly country.

As a reputable tour operator, KE supports the British Foreign & Commonwealth Offices ‘Know before you go’ campaign to enable British citizens to prepare for their journeys overseas, and we recommend that all KE travellers take a look at the FCO Travel Advice for their chosen destination on the official FCO website: North Americans can also check out the U.S. Department of State website: for essential travel advice and tips.

KE treat the safety and security of all clients as the most important aspect of any trip we organise. We would not run any trip that we did not consider reasonably safe.  Should the FCO advise against travel for any reason, we will contact everyone booked to travel to discuss the situation.  We receive regular updates direct from the FCO and are in constant touch with our contacts on the ground.  If you have any questions about government travel advice, please call our office.

You will encounter a wide range of daytime temperatures during your holiday. In September - November and April - May this will range from an average of approximately 25ºC in Kathmandu to approximately 14ºC at 3000 metres, and approximately 3ºC at 5000 metres. From December to early April, temperatures will average around 5 - 7ºC lower than this and in August it will be up to 5ºC warmer. At night in the rarefied air the temperatures plummet. Except during August, you can expect to experience overnight temperatures below freezing once above approximately 4200m. (above 3000m from mid December) and at our highest overnight stops, outside temperatures may drop as low as minus 15ºC. Extended periods of rain or snow are very unlikely outside of the monsoon period but short-lived storms can and do occur. The area of Mustang lies in the Himalayan rain shadow and so is not touched by the monson but in Kathmandu in August, you can expect heavy downpours on some days.

Trekking and Climbing in Nepal. Steve Razzetti. Trekking in the Nepal Himalaya. Stan Armington. Kathmandu and the Kingdom of Nepal. Prakash Raj. Mustang - A Lost Tibetan Kingdom. Michel Peissel. The Last Forbidden Kingdom. Clara Marullo. East of Lo Monthang. Peter Matthiessen.

Mustang 1: 60,000. Himalayan Maphouse

Trekking map of the Mustang area between Jomosom and Lo-Manthang.

Extend Your Holiday

Chitwan Jungle Extension

The jungles of southern Nepal are an interesting counterpoint to trekking in the foothills or the high Himalaya. Tiger Tops Tharu Lodge provides a relaxing and comfortable base for a wildlife safari and cultural village experience. On two full days of wildlife viewing in the National Park 'buffer zone' - the interface area between visitors and the animals that live at Chitwan – you will be accompanied by expert guides on safaris by jeep, boat, on foot and by elephant back.

Chitwan Jungle Tharu Lodge Extension

From $980 per person

More info

Kathmandu Tour - Nagarkot and Bhaktapur

The Kathmandu Valley contains the cities of Patan, Bhaktapur and Kathmandu itself, all of which were once independent kingdoms. An exploration of the valley’s historic and cultural sights is an excellent way to begin or end your adventure in Nepal. Highlights of the day's tour include the ancient city of Bhaktapur, a UNESCO World Heritage Site renowned for it’s temples and traditional buildings, and Nagarkot on the Kathmandu Valley rim, the perfect place to watch a Himalayan sunrise.

Kathmandu Valley Tour - Nargakot and Bhaktapur

From $125 per person

More info

Malla Hotel

From $100 per room per night

Gokarna Forest Resort Kathmandu

From $138 per room per night

Shanker Hotel

From $100 per room per night

Situated next to the grounds of the former Royal Palace and only a 10-minute walk from the popular Thamel district, this former Rana residence was converted into a hotel in 1964. The original architecture was based on a French palace and the hotel has a grand appearance. Set in a large and beautifully tended garden, it provides a hideaway from the hustle and bustle of city life and is an ideal base from which to explore Kathmandu. All its rooms which are en-suite have been recently refurbished and the hotel facilities include 2 restaurants, 2 bars and a swimming pool where you can also order drinks.

Shangri La

From $119 per room per night Another of Kathmandu’s original ‘luxury’ hotels. While the sophistication of its amenities may be upstaged by Kathmandu’s more modern concrete and glass hotels, the Shangri La maintains an old world charm that cannot be beaten. Located in the diplomatic enclave of Lazimpat, away from the hustle and bustle yet just 10 minutes walk from tourist centre of Thamel, the hotel is set in a pleasant garden and facilities include a pool, tennis court and massage therapist. The hotel has a speciality Indian restaurant and a garden café serving international cuisine as well as a bar.

Dwarikas Hotel

From $279 per room per night Dwarika’s is a heritage hotel modelled on the grandeur of the palaces of the Newar Kings. Consisting of several buildings arranged around a quiet courtyard, the hotel incorporates many original 15th – 17th century features in its architecture from the lifetime collection of its founder. The rooms are in the same Newari style and lavishly luxurious in their appointments. Its location close to Pashupathinath and Bouddhanath is perfect for exploring this side of Kathmandu. There are 3 restaurants serving Nepali, Japanese and international cuisine, a bar, spa and fitness centre, and a swimming pool.

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