You begin by arriving at Kathmandu’s Tribhuwan International Airport and transfer to a hotel.
The second day is given to permit preparation. With a day of leisure, you can explore not only Kathmandu but also Bhaktapur or Patan. Bhaktapur features the best-preserved palace courtyards and old city centre in Nepal, leading to its declaration to be a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Patan is renowned for its rich cultural heritage, especially in terms of arts and crafts. Many locals continue to refer to it by its Sanskrit name of Lalitpur – City of Beauty. Its Durban Square is possibly the greatest collection of palaces and temples in Nepal.
You are driven to Pokhara, taking five or six hours along the Prithivi Highway. The Himalayan ranges of Annapurna, Ganesh Himal and Manaslu can be seen, if the weather permits it.
You fly to Jomson. The flight alone is worth doing, going above, as it does, the deepest gorge in the world. Here your treks begins. Kagbeni is your destination, a settlement of flat-roofed houses. To be found there is a Tibetan Buddhist gompa of the Sakyapa sect. The views of Mounts Annapurna, Dhaulagiri, Nilgiri and Tilicho are scintillating. From this point on, your accommodation will be in tea houses.
You trek via the villages of Tangbe, Chhusang and Chele, with a fantastic landscape below. There is a small but very notable cave gompa in Chhusan. You next arrive at the Dajori La Pass. A further half hour of walking brings you to Samar.
You head for Bena La and then Yamda La. This is where you are presented with your first substantial view of the Upper Mustang region. You now hike to Syangboche, after which is Geling, where there are two gompas dating to the 15th century which are certainly worth seeing.
Today, your trek takes you steeply uphill to a pass where there is a fine view of the Annapurnas. Then you trek to Ghemi before trekking down a stream and across a suspension bridge. You ascend the upper valley and find before you the longest mani wall in the region. Mani stones are inscribed with the mantra of Avalokiteshvara, a bodhisattva – something like an angel in Buddhism. You next climb to another pass, Tsarang La, and descend to Tsarang, once the capital of Mustang.
A short walk leads to one of the most noteworthy sites along your trek – Lo-Manthang.
You spend another day at Lo-Manthang. Four large gompas are worth visiting: Jampa Lhakhang, Jampa gompa, Chodey Gompa and Choprang Gompa.
You trek back to Ghemi.
Next is Samar, which was recently seeking a painter proficient in traditional Buddhist wall painting and a statue builder to restore a centuries-old clay Buddha.
You return to Jomsom.
You fly back to Pokhara.
You are driven to Kathmandu.