Nepal is a country of diversity and places untouched by the modern world. Among those destinations lies Mustang.
Known as the last forbidden kingdom of Nepal, Mustang is a charismatic valley. It has something to offer for everyone, regardless of when you visit Nepal.
Mustang lies in the Gandaki Pradesh in Northern Nepal. It extends northward to the Tibetan Plateau. Due to the strong Tibetan influence and many Buddhist monasteries, Mustang is also called “Mini Tibet.”
The magic of Mustang lies in its rugged terrains and mountains. These create a beautiful landscape on its valleys, carved by the Kali-Gandaki River.
Not to forget, Mustang is famous for its excellent outdoor activities. They are thrilling and out of the world.
Besides its scenic beauty and adventurous activities, Mustang also invites a lot of Hindu and Buddhist pilgrims. Devotees come from all over the world and Nepal itself to visit the Muktinath Temple.
Mustang has two parts: the Upper Mustang and Lower Mustang. To explain more, Upper Mustang is where there are caves, and adventurous treks take place. Simultaneously, Lower Mustang is where you see the natural scenery and wander the apple fields.
Dive in to learn more about the kingdom of Mustang.
History of Mustang
The history of Mustang is mostly legends than written facts.
As per the belief, Mustang was a part of the Ngari area of Tibet. In the 14th century, Ngari became a part of the Malla Empire. From the 15th century, Mustang took control over the trade between the Himalayas and India due to its tactical location.
In 1380, it became an independent kingdom. Ame Pal had defeated the local warlords of Lo Manthang and became Mustang’s first king. He built the fortress of Ketcher Dzong and constructed the walled capital of Lo Manthang.
Ame Pal was a warrior and a devout Buddhist from Western Tibet. Because of it, Mustang had and still has a strong Buddhist influence. And since it was easy to cross borders due to its strategic position between Tibet and India, the monks of Lo went to Tibet to study.
Thus, in Mustang, the economy and culture were abundant. At the end of the 17th century, Prithivi Narayan Shah annexed Mustang as a part of a unified kingdom in Nepal.
In 1951, the constitutional monarchy was introduced in Nepal. Due to it, Mustang became a district. This movement took away most of the king’s power.
The Khampa guerillas made Lo Manthang their base to carry out resistance movement against Chinese exaction over Tibet. That is why the Nepal government declared Mustang a restricted area.
Before, Lower Mustang was only open for tourism, leaving Upper Mustang economically barren. After the 1990 revolution, the government partially opened Upper Mustang for foreigners.
The public abolished Nepal’s monarchy system in 2008, and thus, there was no king in Mustang. The last unofficial king of Mustang was Jigme Dorje Palbar Bista (1930-2016). His lineage goes back to Ame Pal.
Best time to travel and trek in Mustang
The best time to travel to Mustang is during Spring Season (March, April, May). These are the months when the weather is warm. The clear skies offer excellent visibility of the mountain peaks and landscapes.
You will see blossoming Rhododendrons along your trekking trails. It will make your experience more beautiful. Besides, you will get to attend the Tiji Festival at Upper Mustang if you plan your Mustang Tour in May.
Autumn (September, October, and November) is also an excellent time to travel. The weather is dry and predictable than in other seasons.
You will get to see the spectacular views of the mountain peaks and gorges. You can even sightsee some animals and birds of the Mustang region during this time.
Monsoon (June to September) is an ‘okay’ season to visit Mustang. Since Mustang lies in the rain-shadow area, the chance of heavy rainfall is low. But again, the weather will be unpredictable.
It is safe to say that the hiking trails will not be slippery or suffer from any landslides due to rainfall. Traveling to Mustang in the monsoon season is excellent if you want to attend the Yartung Mela. It features archery, horse race, and cultural dances.
I suggest you avoid the winter seasons that last from December to February. The temperature drops to 0 degrees Celsius at night, and you’ll feel cold.
Mustang uses the Nepalese currency for its transactions. ATM lounges are prevalent only in Jomsom.
I suggest you change your dollars for Nepalese currency at foreign exchange companies in Kathmandu. Do not expect Mustang to have them.
There are many foreign-exchange offices in Lakeside, Pokhara as well. They will readily change your dollars for Nepalese currency. Many ATM lounges at Pokhara accept foreign cards too.
Getting to Mustang and traveling around
Before, Mustang was not accessible by any transportation means. People used to travel on foot and on horses.
After the construction of the airport and roadways, it has become more accessible. You can reach Mustang by planes, buses, jeeps, cars, and trucks.
If you can afford flight tickets or don’t want to travel on the road, flying to Jomsom to start your Mustang tour is best. The flight is 25 minutes long, but Jomsom’s windy location makes it harder for the plane to land.
Nepal has only one international airport – Tribhuwan International Airport, Kathmandu. After you land in Kathmandu, what you can do is take a domestic flight to Jomsom.
You can also fly to Jomsom from Pokhara if you want to explore lake city first. Get a complete guide to Pokhara here.
You can book an airline ticket from domestic airline companies. Some are Yeti Airlines, Buddha Airlines, Tara Airlines, Simrik Airlines, Nepal Airlines, etc. Flight fare will cost you anywhere from $100 to $125 during peak season.
Another option which is cheaper and good for sightseeing is traveling by road.
With the construction of roadways, Mustang is accessible by two-wheelers and four-wheelers. Traveling by road is a significant adventure activity too.
a) Local Bus
The cheapest way to travel to Mustang is by getting a bus ticket for Kathmandu to Beni from Gongabu Bus Park. There are a lot of buses and micro-buses that leave for Beni every day.
After you reach Beni, you have to switch buses and take a local bus to Jomsom, which always leaves at a specific time. If you have more time in hand and want to explore more, then taking a bus to Ghasa and exploring your way to Jomsom is best.
Or, you can simply change the bus and take another one from Ghasa to Jomsom.
Kathmandu – Beni: $6.66
Beni – Ghasa: $3.25
Ghasa – Jomsom: $3.42
Most of the tourists trek their way to Muktinath from Lete. If you are not one of them, then a bus ride from Jomsom to Muktinath will cost you $2.50.
b) Jeep Safari Tour
An off-road Jeep Safari Tour is the best way to visit Mustang. It is perfect for individuals who want to travel on their terms without the hassle of changing buses or going on multi-day treks.
Jeep Safari Tour is available in both the Upper and Lower regions of Mustang.
The 4 WD Overland Jeep Adventure Tour helps you visit Lo Manthang most comfortably. It also lets you see the ancient caves, monasteries, archaeological sites, and natural beauty.
The jeep safari tour package includes accommodation with an attached bathroom facility. It also consists of a tour around the district and food services at tea houses.
Having your private jeep gives you the freedom to ask the driver to stop wherever you want. You can also take a picture or just take in the beautiful scenery of the Himalayas.
2 people – $2295
4 people – $1595
c) Bike Tours
If you are adventurous and free-spirited, then hiring a motorcycle is a great way to tour Mustang.
Mountain Bike Tour is very famous among the local travelers. It is growing among international tourists too.
Well, why wouldn’t it? Bike Tours gives you more time to observe the Himalayan desert and travel the district on your terms. Royal Enfield and dirt bikes like Honda CRF are best for traveling to Mustang.
Note: You must pay for the Upper Mustang Special Permit, which costs $500 per person. You will also need the Annapurna Conservation Area Permit of $300 per person. In most cases, your travel company will do it for you as you cannot travel individually.
Nowadays, tourists travel to and from Mustang on helicopters. As expensive as it may be, the tour around the Lower and Upper Mustang offer a unique experience to sightsee.
You will see the panoramic views of the high mountains and beautiful landscapes along the Kali Gandaki River. Some of the best companies for helicopter tours are Outshine Adventure Pvt. Ltd and Nepal Helicopter Service.
$6500 per 4-5 hours of flight
includes fare of 5 passengers, charter flight from:
Kathmandu – Pokhara – Jomsom – Lo Manthang – Kathmandu
(government taxes and service charge)
Places to visit in Mustang
Jomsom is the starting and ending point of your Mustang journey. This place is where your flight will land.
Jomsom is also known as Dzongsar, which means New Fort. It is a popular starting point for the treks to Muktinath or along the Kali Gandaki Valley.
Jomsom is a perfect destination to experience pristine nature. You can see beautiful views of Dhaulagiri and Nilgiri from here.
This place has a wireless station, police headquarters, hospital, veterinary, and a bank. Not to forget, Jomsom is the only place with a variety of restaurants among all of Mustang.
Marpha is a beautiful stone-lined village that has many guesthouses and small hotels.
At Marpha, you will meet the Mawatan Thakalis. They are the inhabitants of Marpha. You can see them spending their days on farming and animal husbandry.
This village is very pleasing to the eye. The clean paved canals or ‘gullys’ are charming and picture-perfect. You can see stacks of split firewood lined at the flat roof of every house.
Besides the picturesque beauty, Marpha is also famous for its delicious apples. No wonder it is also known as the ‘Apple Capital of Nepal.’
The village is also famous for its Marpha brandy, apple jams, and apple pie. So, make sure to buy some to take home with you.
Chhairo Gompa (Monastery)
Chhairo Gompa lies on the Annapurna trekking route from Pokhara to Jomsom. It falls on the south side of Marpha village. I recommend you to visit this monastery while you are at Marpha as it is only 20 minutes away from there.
This Gompa houses a bamboo idol of Guru Rimpoche and also has wall paintings. It also has Thangkas (frescoes) of Buddhist gods and goddesses painted by the founder – Lama Chhiwang Thilen.
You will also see several small statues of Chhairo Gompa’s past lamas. There is a lifelike clay image of the Gompa’s founder, too.
You should visit this Gompa and witness the monks’ daily lives. It fills your soul with the spiritual aura of the monks’ prayer chants.
While Mustang invites half of its visitors for trekking, half of them come here to visit Muktinath. It is one of the principal pilgrimage sites sacred to both Hindus and Buddhists.
Located at the foot of Thorang La mountain pass in Mustang, Muktinath is also one of the world’s highest temples.
An attraction at the Muktinath is the 108 water sprouts. There is a belief that walking under all the 108 water sprouts will cleanse your soul and free you of your sins.
Other attractions are the ancient Narsingh Cave. It houses Padmasambhava (great Buddhist teacher) ‘s statue, monasteries, and the Jwalamai temple.
But hey! Muktinath temple is not only a divine bliss but a scenic one too. You can see the stunning view of the surrounding landscapes of Muktinath.
The Ranipauwa Bazar at Muktinath has many hotels, lodges, and inns. They host many devotees, so if you are looking for one, this is a place to go.
How to reach Muktinath?
a) You can trek your way up to the temple from Jomsom. You don’t need any special trekking permits for it.
b) You can also take a bus from Beni to Jomsom early in the morning. This way, you will reach Muktinath by noon.
c) You can take a 2-hour jeep drive from Jomsom as well.
Kagbeni is a medieval village in Lower Mustang that acts as a gateway to Upper Mustang. It lies between the trails from Jomsom to Lo Manthang.
Mustang, especially the Upper Mustang, is highly influenced by the Tibetan culture. However, among the villages in Lower Mustang, Kagbeni has the most Tibetan influence. You can see that in the culture of the people and the ambiance of the town.
While you are here, learn the background of this abandoned village. The history of Kagbeni has lots of legends.
Its history consists of stories about demons, power conflict, and the banishment of Lo’s prince. It will keep you intrigued on your visit to Kagbeni. You can also hike to Lungfu Cave, which is a sacred site for Buddhist pilgrims.
Also, visit Kag Chode Thupten Samphel Ling Gompa, a beautiful Buddhist monastery. The Gompa displays bronze icons of Sakyamuni Buddha with his disciples and divinities. Plus, the excellent Thangkas and woodwork are something you should not miss here.
Apart from these, you can wander around the mudhouses and ancient Buddhist Chhortens at this old-age village. Do take a look at the two Khenis (ghost eaters) that reflect the villagers’ old animist beliefs.
If you are into archaeology, I suggest you go to Phudzeling. It is an important archaeological excavation site. This site contains a lot of history of Mustang.
Lastly, be a part of at least one of the four annual festivals at Kagbeni. Trust me; the festivals are a great way to experience the culture of the village. You can enjoy feasting on the food and drinks with the locals as well.
a) Chhungu (New Year): January
b) Dhajyang: April/May
c) Fangel: August
d) Yartung: August (full moon day)
Kag Khar Ruined Palace
Kag Khar Ruined Palace is the ruined palace of the Kag Khar dynasty, located at Kagbeni. I am writing about this palace in a separate section, as it is an important historical site for Nepal.
It was a significant site during ancient times due to its Salt Trade route. The palace’s ruins symbolize that it was strategically constructed between the two valleys’ junctions: Mustang and Manang.
The fortress walls have holes whose use we can only guess. All in all, exploring this fortress will be a unique experience for you at Kagbeni.
Now we have reached Upper Mustang, FINALLY!
Lo Manthang is the hidden kingdom of the Upper Mustang. This walled city has a significant Tibetan influence. It is mostly held by an ethnic group called ‘Lhobas.’
Lo Manthang has many places to visit, like temples, caves, and a palace. Besides, the beauty of Lo Manthang is extraordinary, making the tour more pleasurable. It looks like a high-altitude desert with greenery. Ever heard something like that?
Tourists love exploring the ancient monasteries, houses, and culture at Lo Manthang. One of the places to explore is the Royal Palace of Mustang. The palace was home to the Kings and their heirs, who ruled Mustang till 2015.
The palace is an integral part of regional architecture as it was built around the 1400s. Now, the court suffers many cracks from the earthquake of April 2015.
While you are in Lo Manthang, you must visit the four Gompas. They are Jampa Lhakhang, Chodey Gompa, Thubchen Gompa, and Chomprang Gompa.
You should also visit the 12 caves discovered here. The caves have ancient silver and gold paintings from the 13th century and stupas.
Lo Manthang is truly a historic and scenic masterpiece.
Note: The areas of Upper Mustang and Lo Manthang are restricted. You will need a special permit from Nepal’s immigration department if you are not a Nepali.
Obtaining the permit by yourself is impossible. So, you will have to go through a Nepali Trekking Company.
The permit costs $500 per person and is valid for ten days. If you exceed your deadline, then you will have to pay $50 per day.
Best Ways to Explore Lo Manthang
The best way to reach Lo Manthang is by trekking your way up from Jomsom. This way, you will get to see more of Lo Manthang.
If you are not much of a walker and don’t want to spend an extra $50 per day, traveling to this place on a jeep will be okay.
c) Motor Cycle
If you are adventurous and want to be free-spirited, then a bike tour to Lo Manthang will be one hell of an experience. Dirt bikes like Honda CRF and Royal Enfield are best for traveling around Lo Manthang.
There are thousands of sky caves in Mustang. Among them, Chungsi cave is the most important Buddhist pilgrimage. It is one of the significant highlights of Upper Mustang too.
Chungsi is a natural cave that is also known as Ranchung Cave. People believe that Guru Rimpoche, who introduced Buddhism in Tibet during the 8th century, meditated in this cave.
Besides having religious, medical, and historical importance (I know that is a lot!), Chungsi cave also has a beautiful landscape. It preserves ancient Buddhism culture, which adds more to the peaceful experience.
You should meditate here for spiritual healing.
Chhoser Village and the Jhong Cave
Chhoser is a beautiful village surrounded by red, orange, and grey cliffs. You can walk, pony trek, or drive on a jeep to visit the caves and monasteries of Chhoser.
A day trip to Chhoser Village is a must on your trek at Upper Mustang. The village is famous for its 2500-year-old Jhong cave.
The Jhong Cave holds great historical importance in Nepal. This cave has more than 10,000 human-made caves. It also has five storied caves with more than 40 separate rooms.
After much researches, archaeologists have discovered 2000-3000-year-old mummified bodies and skeletons. They also found valuable Buddhist paintings, sculptures, manuscripts, and artifacts.
Major activities in Mustang
Trekking in Mustang takes you through different landscapes, cultures, and sceneries. Trust me, when I write this, they are one of the best.
a) Lower Mustang Trek
The Lower Mustang Trek is a perfect trekking destination available all year round. However, March to May and September to December are the best months.
This trek is a part of the world-famous Annapurna Circuit and Upper Mustang trek. The best thing is that you don’t need to issue a special permit to explore Lower Mustang. It is comfortable for solo travelers, families with kids and seniors, as well as a group of friends.
This trek will take you through the beautiful villages of Lower Mustang. Some are Marpha, Jomsom, Kagbeni, Tin, Jharkot, Muktinath, and Lupra.
You will be awestruck by its unique landscape, which is barren yet full of greenery at the same time. Also, not to forget the old villages’ culture and the lifestyle of the people.
Lower Mustang Trek takes you to the highest of 3,710 meters above sea level. You can go on this trek while enjoying your nights at comfortable tea houses found along the way.
b) Upper Mustang Trek
Upper Mustang is also known as the ‘Mini Tibet of Nepal’ because of the region’s similar topography and culture as of Tibet. You will feel like trekking in Tibet while trekking the Upper Mustang.
Upper Mustang Trek is a moderate-level trek that is best when done between March and May. This trek will take you to Chogo La (Marang La), where you will reach an elevation of 4230 meters above sea level. You will get to explore the Annapurna region while learning about the monasteries, caves, and palaces.
On your trek to Upper Mustang, you can visit historical villages like Lo Manthang and Chhoser. These villages have remained untouched by tourism and modernization.
I’m sure you will fall in love with these places. It makes you feel closer to Upper Mustang’s distinctive culture.
Attend a festival
Mustang hosts several festivals and religious ceremonies throughout the year.
Plan your Mustang trip between June, July and August to witness the Tenji Festival, a.k.a Tiji Festival in Lo Manthang. It is a colorful Buddhist festival of Upper Mustang that celebrates the victory of good over evil.
You will see monks engaging in dances that tell the Buddist story of good and evil.
People celebrate it with prayer chants, dances, colorful traditional costumes, food, and drinks. The whole of the Mustang comes together to enjoy this festival. Being a part of the Tiji festival is an experience you need to have while on your trek to Upper Mustang.
If you’re visiting the country during August, you will witness the Yartung festival in Muktinath. This festival includes horse racing, dancing, and drinking.
The month of February hosts Saka Lhuka. It is a seed-sowing ceremony where monks recite religious books, and new village leaders are appointed.
Note: As I mentioned earlier in the “Getting to Mustang and traveling around” section, you need a special permit to enter Upper Mustang. You need to have a reputed travel agency in Nepal to guide you throughout your trek in the valley.
$1600- $3500, depending on your travel agency and your budget.
Day Hike at Chele
Have you ever heard of the Grand Canyon of the USA? If yes, then Chele gives you a view of the Nepali version of the Grand Canyon. Located at an elevation of 3050 meters above sea level, Chele is a village that offers you one of Mustang’s best sceneries.
After crossing the Kali Gandaki river bridge, you have to walk uphill for 45 minutes from Chele to see the view. A day hike at this place will be one of the best experiences of your trip to Nepal. Just take your time to grasp the beauty of nature after you reach the top of the village.
Who said Mustang is only significant for trekking, history, and sightseeing? To fuel your adrenaline, you can now go mountain biking in this mountainous region of Nepal.
Mustang lets you ride on the wild and challenging trails while offering breathtaking beauty and culture.
While you’re in Mustang, riding amidst the views of the astounding Tibetan Plateau is a must. You will be riding to the highest point of 3,800 m at the Muktinath temple, then plunge from the deepest gorge in the world.
The single trails are technical, yet less challenging, and it will be perfect for beginners.
I highly recommend you to cycle down from Muktinath to Tatopani.
Your mountain biking itinerary will look something like this:
Day 1: Touch down in Kathmandu, explore the city
Day 2: Fly to Pokhara (take a vehicle to Pokhara)
Day 3: Fly/Ride to Jomsom-Ride to Kagbeni
Day 4: Ride to Muktinath, then descend to Jomsom
Day 5: Ride to Kalopani
Day 6: Ride to Tatopani
Day 7: Ride to Beni-Drive to Pokhara
Day 8: Ride in Pokhara and relax
Day 9: Fly to Kathmandu and relax
Day 10: Takeoff
You can customize your ride as well.
Where can you hire bikes?
a) Pokhara Mountain Bike Adventure/ MTB Guided Tours and Rentals
Located at Baidam, Lakeside, Pokhara Mountain Bike Adventure will help you select a suitable mountain bike. They can also help fly your bike to Jomsom from where you can ride your bike.
b) Mustang Outback Adventures
Located at Ranipauwa, Muktinath, Mustang Outback Adventures is a Mustang-based mountain bike rental company. It gives you the necessary items like spare tubes and pumps. They will also provide some helpful tips on the routes to follow on Mustang.
Horse Riding Tour
You should put a Horse Riding Tour on your to-do list at Mustang. You should ask your tour guides to arrange a horse riding excursion/day tour from Lo Manthang to Chhoser.
You don’t have to worry, though. The horses will be tourist-friendly and guided by their masters throughout the way. You can ask how easy or fast you want your horse ride to be as well.
Saribung Peak Climbing is a newly explored peak climbing destination in Nepal. It is situated in the Damodar Himalayan range in the western part of Nepal.
The climbing expedition enables you to view the topographical variation of the Upper Monastery. As challenging as it may feel for beginners, this trekking trail will be relatively easy for experienced mountaineers.
I recommend you book your Saribung expedition with Mountain Monarch Trekking and Climbing or with Adventure Geo Treks.
These trekking companies will provide you with a complete itinerary. It includes accommodation, meals, and transportation expenses. Both of these companies will look after your trekking permit fees and cards as well.
$2425 – $5750 per person
(depending on the company and the itinerary)
Very few people visit Mustang in winter as it is frigid. But, if you visit, you will get to enjoy the snowfall and play the snow games in Mustang. SNOW FIGHT TIME!
I suggest you go on a horseback ride around the snowy villages on your winter getaway at Mustang.
Accommodation in Mustang
I suppose by now you know that every tourist has to buy a tour package to tour Mustang. Your travel agency will be booking the hotels and lodges according to your need. But, don’t expect a luxurious hotel with air conditioning and swimming pool facilities.
You can talk to your travel agency if you want to stay in a hotel and lodge room or experience living in a homestay. Homestays are a great way to learn about the place’s culture and daily lifestyle. They are cheaper too.
Himalayan Guest House is my favorite when it comes to homestays. The hospitality is excellent, and the prices are fair. Plus, they also give you free guide services if you are traveling alone with your travel agency.
Below I have listed some of my favorite hotels and resorts at Mustang. If you like them, then you can ask your travel agency to book them for you. Trust me; you will have a great stay here.
- Royal Mustang Resort
- Red House Lodge
Himalayan Guest House
Food in Mustang
You have struggled, you have walked, and YOU have conquered all those long roads to Mustang. So besides expecting to eat your regular food, it’d be excellent if you eat Thakali food. It is the local cuisine of the Mustang.
Thakali food consists of the Thali menu. It includes rice, lentils, vegetable curry, non-vegetable curry, pickle, and poppadoms. This Thali is a meal that is delicious, healthy, and keeps you going through the day.
You may find Thakali food all over Nepal, but eating it where it originated just hits different. Most of the hotels and teashops at Mustang will provide you Thakali food. You should also try Tibetan bread, Thukpa, and butter tea on your visit to Mustang.
By now, you also know that Mustang is famous for its apples of Marpha. The apples will be an excellent trekking snack for you.
You might as well eat some apple pie or drink wine and beer made from these delicious apples. If you want to go more local, try the Marpha drink—a local ale made of apples and peaches of Marpha.
You can also buy some local dried fruit and meat items at a cheaper rate in Mustang. Tea and coffee can be expensive than what you used to get in Kathmandu. So until and unless you can’t live without them, I suggest you avoid it.
However, if you don’t have a knack for local food, you will find some cafes and restaurants in Jomsom. Other areas of Mustang do not have high-end restaurants. The reason behind it is the government’s restriction to urbanize the majority of Mustang.
Some of my favorite restaurants at Jomsom are:
- Himalayan Java Gallery Café
- Café Apple Bes
- The Kailash Hotel
I also recommend you bring your snacks and protein bars for the hike.
Mustang packing list and trekking gears
Trekking gears are a must when it comes to Mustang. Mustang is a moderate-level trekking site. That does not mean you can just carry a bag and your running shoes or your entire luggage to the trek.
You should only carry what you need, so here is a list of must-have trekking gears to Mustang.
- Sleeping Bag
- Rucksack bag and cover
- Hiking Poles (2)
- Hydration bladder
- Head torch (with extra batteries)
- A dry bag
- Down Jacket
- Fleece pullover/jackets and pants
- Dry-fit T-shirts and shorts
- Thermal underwear
- Hiking Boots ( waterproof with excellent ankle support)
- Trail runners/ light sandals
- Lightweight poly-liner/wool/fleece gloves (waterproof)
- Thermal Socks
- Sun Hat
- Camera with charger (220 V with plug)
Personal Care Kit
- Toiletries ( Shampoo, toothbrush and paste, soap, hand sanitizer, prescribed medication)
- Travel towel
- Personal first aid kit
- Water purification tablets
- Sunscreen and lip balm
- Adapter plug
- Pocket knife
- Small roll of repair tape
- Cigarette lighter
- Compass or GPS
- Rubbish disposable sacks
You can buy these gears in Kathmandu at a cheaper rate than in your home country. Kathmandu has showrooms of all high-end brands like North Face, Sherpa, Marmot, and Black Yak.
There are smaller shops that sell the same gears for much lower prices, too.
Sim cards and network connectivity
You have two SIM Card companies to choose from in Nepal: Nepal Telecom (NTC) and Ncell.
You can get these SIM Cards as soon as you land at Tribhuwan International Airport, Kathmandu. NTC even provides free SIM Cards for tourists. You will have to buy the data packages, though.
However, if you wish to buy the sim card outside the airport, it will cost you $1. You can buy a 1 GB data pack for $5 for NTC, whereas Ncell is much cheaper and gives you 1.2 GB of data for only $2.
But only NTC has operated mobile service in Upper Mustang. I believe that buying this SIM card will be best for you, as you can get network connectivity.
If you have anything else, you’d like me to add, please feel free to comment below.