Explore Lo Manthang

specialExplore Lo Manthang (6 days/5 nights)
Lo Manthang is located in the Mustang region, a desert plateau at 12,400 Ft. Dry, desolate and windy, it is a paradise like no other on earth. Mustang was off limits to foreigners until 1964 when French anthropologist and author, Michel Peissel, was granted a one-time permit into the region. In 1992, it was partially opened to foreigners. Today, only a limited number of tourists are granted ten-day permits to visit this region. Being a Kingdom within a Kingdom, Mustang is currently ruled by Raja Jigme Palbar Bista, the 25th descendent of the founder of the kingdom of Lo. The largest settlement in this area is Lo Manthang, a small fort city with twenty feet high surrounding walls, sentinel turrets at each corner and prayer flags blowing in the wind. This city is as good as having been frozen in a time capsule dating to pre Buddhist Bon Po culture, more exotic and protected than even Tibet. Explore Lo Manthang gives you an insider’s view of daily life in this magical present day kingdom.

Day 1 – Kathmandu/Lo Manthang

7:00AM: Fly Kathmandu-Lo Manthang by Helicopter.

Upon arrival at the helipad, welcome and transfer to Mystique Himalayan Resort, the one and only deluxe-resort in Mustang Region. At the resort, you will be welcomed with beverages, Tea/Coffee/Juice or local brew ‘Rakshi’ followed by breifing of Mustang by the Resort Manager.

1:00PM: Lunch at Resort.
2:00PM: Tour of Palace and audience with the ‘Raja of Mustang’ (subject to availability)
7:00PM: Dinner.

The Palace:
The Raja’s palace is an imposing 4-story building in the centre of the city. It is the home of the present Raja, Jigme Palbar Bista, and the queen or Rani, who is from an aristocratic family of Lhasa. The Raja is an active horsemen and keeps a stable of the best horses in Lo. He also breeds Lhasa Apso dogs and several monstrous Tibetan Mastiffs that can be heard barking angrily on the second story of the palace. Though his duties are largely ceremonial, he is respected by the people and consulted about many issues by villagers throughout Lo. The Raja’s family name was originally Tandul. It was changed in accordance with a recent tradition in which many people of Tibetan descent Nepalised their surnames. The practice is similar to custom of the “Matwali Chhetris” of Dolpo in which Khampas adopted Hindu surnames. It is also similar to the practice of many Manangis who calls themselves Gurungs. Most have a second Nepali name that was assigned when they enrolled in school. There are four major Temples in the city walls. Each of these buildings are locked. The villagers feel it necessary to control access to the temples. the caretaker and the key are available only at certain times, and usually only after a bit of negotiation.

Day 2 – Around Lo Manthang/Thugchen/Namgyal

6:00AM: Bed Tea.
7:00AM: Breakfast.
9:00AM: Tour of Lo-city, Thugchen Gompa, Monks College & Namgyal monastery. .
1:00PM: Lunch at Resort.
7:00PM: Dinner.

The whitewashed walls around Lo Manthang is shaped like a misshapen L with a short vertical arm oriented north-south and a very fat, almost square horizontal arm. The closely packed houses, the palace and temples are in the bottom portion, the vertical part of the L houses the monastic community and two gompas and this portion of the city wall is painted red. The school, health post, police post and several important chortens are located outside the walls to the North of the gate and East of the monastic part of the city. The city contains 150 houses plus numerous residences for Lamas.

The only agricultural land inside the walls is a field owned by the monastery situated near the center of the city. The walls of Lo Manthang was once more imposing than it is now. In the mid 1980s, the Raja sold much of the land surrounding the city and as a result, numerous stables, houses and stone-walled fields now adjoin the wall. Nothing will grow in this arid land without irrigation. A small canal flows around the city providing sustenance for a few willow trees and another canal flows under the wall and through the city itself. The surrounding irrigated fields provide one crop a year of wheat, barley, peas or mustard.

Thugchen Gompa:
The red Thugchen Gompa is near the center of the city, a massive assembly hall supported by huge columns dating from the same period as Champa Lakhang. There are statues of Sakyamuni surrounded by Avaloketasvara, Vaisravana (the god of wealth) and Padmasambhava. One wall of the temple is completely destroyed; on the other walls are intricate frescoes in various stages of deterioration. The entrance hall contains huge scowling statues of four Lokapala, the protectors of the cardinal points of compass.

Champa Lakhang:The tall Champa Lakhang (“Lakhang” translates as “god house”) is said to date from the 1940’s and is accessible only on the second story. The central courtyard with its carved wooden pillars has fallen into disrepair. Inside the temple is a huge painted clay statue of Maitreya, the future Buddha, sitting on a pedestal that occupies the entire ground floor. The walls are painted with elaborate mandalas, almost two metres in diameter, that are in marginally better condition than the paintings in Thugchen Gompa.

Day 3 – Around Lo Manthang/Tinkar/Raja Palace

6:00AM: Bed Tea.
7:00AM: Breakfast.
9:00AM: Full day horseback tour of Tinkar, a town with the Summer Palace of the Raja.
1:00PM Lunch at Tinkar.
7:00PM Dinner

Day 4 – Around Lo Manthang/Nyaphu/Gyarphu

6:00AM: Bed Tea.
7:00AM: Breakfast.
9:00AM: Full day horseback tour of Nyaphu and Gyarphu.
1:00PM: Lunch.
7:00PM: Dinner with the ‘Raja of Mustang’ (subject to availability)..

Day 5 – Lo Manthang

6:00AM: Bed Tea.
7:00AM: Breakfast.
9:00AM: Full day free to revisit places of interest.

Day 6 – Lo Manthang/Kathmandu

6:00AM: Bed Tea.
7:00AM: Breakfast.
9:00AM: Fly Lomanthang-Kathmandu by helicopter.

Cost from $6895.00, per person
Based on twin share and minimum 4 persons

Call Now to Book 415-331-3791

Cost Includes:
– Accommodation on full-board and on twin share basis
– All tours in Lo Manthang as per package
– Dinner with Raja of Mustang (subject to availability)
– Accommodation, food and tours for accompanying Liaison Officer
– Monument entrance fee.
– Applicable government taxes.
– Helicopter Charge (Kathmandu – Lo Manthang – Kathmandu)
– National Park Fees
– Helicopter Airport tax
– Liaison Officer Fee
– Special Permit

Cost Excludes:
– All personal expenses and beverages
– Royalty
– Emergency Cost
– Others not mentioned in the package.
– Kathmandu hotels or services

Please note: All packages are exclusive of any additional taxes. Any increase in taxes, royalty national park fees, and monument entrance fee by the government or others which affects the package will be reflected on the final amount to be paid.

Helicopter: Bell, Ecureil or Alloutte Helicopters are used which can carry a maximum of 4+1 Pilot due to altitude.

Call Now 415-331-3791