Tiji Festival 2017 - Upper Mustang

Trip Highlights

  • Kathmandu sightseeing tour
  • Tiji festival experience
  • Views of Annapurna, Dhaulagiri, Nilgiri and Tukuche
  • Incredible Tibetan Buddhist Culture, Monastery, Chhortens and Mani walls
  • Magnificence of Upper Mustang
  • High pass trek - Marang La (4300m), Ghami La (3520m), Nyi La (3840m)

Tiji Festival Trekkingto Upper Mustang region of the Himalaya is one of the most sought after trips in Nepal. Tiji is a very important spiritual festival celebrated in Lo Manthang, the walled city in the Lo region of Upper Mustang. The festival prays for the world peace to prevail. The three days long festival is celebrated to mark the victory of Buddha’s incarnation over a demon that caused several troubles in the region back in the ancient time. Buddhist monks in the monastery there perform dance ceremony. The dance enacts all the troubles caused by the demon, incarnation of Buddha and victory of Buddha’s incarnation over the demon.

The desert like sandy terrain, colorful cliffs, wall caves and occasional green oasis throughout the region make up a spectacular landscape. The crystalline sky over the mountains definitely brings peace and joy in heart and mind.

The Tiji Festival for 2017 has been declared to be celebrated on the 23rd, 24th, and 25th May in Lo Manthang. Our Tiji Festival Trekking starts in Kathmandu and reaches Lo Manthang on the 22nd May to observe the festival.

Day 01 ( May 14): Kathmandu Arrival – 1400 m

Once you arrive at the Tribhuvan International Airport in Kathmandu, you will see Mountain Delights’ representative waiting for you just outside the arrival deck. You will see either our company signboard or a placard with your name printed on it. You will be taken to the trip hotel where you check in and relax for some time. Later we will take you for a short tour of Thamel, the main tourist hub in Kathmandu, to show you some good restaurants, ATMs, money changer and other necessary places you might need to go. Than we brief about the trip. If your arrival is late today, we will do this tour and trip briefing tomorrow before we start for the tour.

Day 02 (May 15): Kathmandu Sightseeing Tour - B

We will take you for a historical and heritage tour of Kathmandu valley today after breakfast. A full day sightseeing today in Kathmandu takes you to the amazing heritage sites of

Boudhanathis considered as the biggest Buddhist Stupa in the world which lies in the middle of a beautiful square. The giant Buddhist shrine is a very important pilgrimage site for Tibetan Buddhist people. The stupa is considered to have been built in 4th/5th centuries and carries some interesting stories behind its establishment. A stupa is basically a relic monument considered as a sacred shrine in Buddhism but there are several other types of stupas other than relic stupas. A stupa symbolizes the journey of a human being from material world to the world of enlightenment.

Pashupatinathis a Hindu Temple area where you can see a very unique cremation culture for the Hindu dead people. The temple which is considered as the most important Shiva temple in Nepal is open for Hindus only thus non-Hindu people have to stay outside the temple premises observing the Hindu death rites and rituals. We can encounter some Sadhus, the holy men, around who look so fascinating for photographs. The place is a rich spiritual and cultural source to have an insight on Nepali life and rituals.

Day 03 (May 16): Kathmandu – Pokhara – 900 m (6 -7 hours Drive)

The journey to Pokhara today is an overland journey through a scenic rural setting. About six hours of road journey today passes through several small towns and villages on the highway that goes along the rivers for the most of its stretch. With enough breaks on the way, we keep driving on a two lane highway which will allow us to absorb the impressive beauty of rural Nepal as firsthand experience outside of Kathmandu valley.

When we reach Pokhara, we will be warmly welcomed by fresh air, close up view of Annapurna range, beautiful lakeside and peaceful environment. We will be instantly overwhelmed by the charisma of this beautiful town. We will have some time to wander around lake side in the evening.

Day 04 (May 17): Pokhara – Jomsom(2720m)  Kagbeni  2810 m ,20 min fly and 3 hrs. walk.

We will take an early morning flight to Jomsom. This breathtaking mountain flight will take us to Jomsom in about 20 minutes. As we fly above Pokhara valley towards the Annapurna range and then for the view of Dhaulagiri range of the Himalayas, we will simply be left awestruck by the majestic charm of the mighty, snow-capped peaks.

Once we land at Jomsom airport, we prepare for the trek of the day. The trek today goes to Kagbeni. We walk along the Kali Gandaki River bank up to Kagbeni in a steady and awesome trail. Stay overnight at a tea house in Kagbeni on the bank of Kali Gandaki River.

Day 05 (May 18): Trek from Kagbeni to Chaile (3050 m.) 6.30  hrs wak.

We trek right up the Kali Gandaki River. The trail then widens significantly revealing an endless stretch of sand. We encounter several passing of mule train carrying goods from Mustang and Tibet. On the west bank of the river are some caves and Gompa Kang. We stop for lunch at the village of Tangbe, where we come across the first black, white and red chortens that is typical of Upper Mustang region. The Nilgiri Peak continues to dominate the southern skyline. We walk further and after crossing the Kali Gandaki River we climb steeply up a rocky alley to the village of Chaile.

Day 06 (May 19): From Chele - Syangboche (3800m)6 hrs walk.

From Chaile we climb a steep spur and then continue ascending along the side of a spectacular steep canyon to a pass. We descend on a pleasant trail to Samar after the pass, situated in a grove of poplar trees. We trek uphill again above Samar to a ridge and then descend into a large gorge past a chorten before entering another valley filled with juniper trees. We then cross a stream and after climbing to a pass, we descend along a ridge to Shyangboche, a tiny settlement with a few tea shops

Day 07 (May 20): Syangboche - Ghami  (3520 m.)5hrs.

The trail climbs gently from Shyangboche and we enter another huge valley before descending to Geling with its extensive fields of barley. We then begin an uphill walk across the head of the valley to the Nyi La [3840m]. The descent from the pass is quite gentle and about half an hour further on we come to a trail junction; the right trail is the direct route to Charang, the left trail leads to Ghami and we follow the trail on the left.

Day 08 (May 21): Ghami - Charang(3570) 4 hrs walk.

Today's walk is through perhaps the driest part of Mustang, and much of our energy will be spent negotiating loose, dry soil. However, the magnificent views of the countryside, from the gentle contours of the north to the rugged mountains in the east and west, are a source of inspiration. Finally, we come to Charang, a large spread-out village at the top of the Charang Chu canyon.

Day 09 (May 22):Tsarang (Charang) to Lo Manthang (3820m) - 3.30 hrs walk.

We spend part of the morning exploring the interesting village of Charang and its large monastery, before starting the trek to Lo Manthang. We climb gently above the valley to a large isolated chorten that marks the boundary between Charang and Lo. The trail then broadens and eventually we get our first view of the walled city of Lo Manthang. As we reach here for Lunch, we take lunch break before starting on our exploration of the Kingdom of Lo Manthang.

Day 10 (May 23)  Tiji Festival Day 01

The first day of the festival, there is going to be a huge celebration. An ancient and enormous three stories high Thanka is unrolled down the entire south wall of the square. The thanka portrays Padma Sambhava or Guru Rimpoche who brought this ceremony to Tibet in the 8th century. Eleven lamas in maroon and gold, wearing high red hats, come from the palace and take their places along the wall beneath the Thanka. The monks and lamas commence sacred chanting. Later, a masked dance starts that enacts the myth of Tiji festival. Dorje Jono, the incarnation of Buddha, repels the demon through the power of his magical dancing. As the dances end, Dorje Jono kills the demon, after which his people are relieved of their plague of misfortunes, water becomes plentiful once more, and the balance and harmony of existence are restored.Overnight at lodge.

Day 11(May 24 ) Tiji Festival Day 02

Numbers of Loba arrive from the outlying hamlets, and the small square is thronged with people, with all of the women and children, in traditional dress. The Royal of Mustang is present today. The costumes and masks, the twelve-foot horns, the gold cups of wheat, the butter cakes, the snow peaks and wind and dust and sun, the mehti, snow leopard, snow pigeons, saligrams, the dying glacier and the desert ruins, the drunks and rajas and foreigners, the dogs and yaks. Tantra!

Day 12 (May 25) Tiji Festival Day 03

Tiji ends with the ceremonial destruction of the evil remains. The demons are set out on an old tiger skin, where-upon they are attacked by bow and arrow, slings, and the old guns. The poor devils remains are over- turned upon the ground. The day brings the festival to end performing all mythological stories. People are now relieved, happy for the good days to follow. After all they have ended the reign of devil.

Day 13 (May 26): Lomangtang - Dhakmar (3820m) via Marang La (4300m) 7  hrs walk

We start early and climb from Lo-Manthang to Marang-La (4300m). We continue our journey on the highland route, fairly flat and fairly climb to Ghar Gompa. We stop for a while there to explore the monastery before descending down a steep eroded alley to Dhakmar .

Day 14 (May 27) : Dhakmar – Gelling (3580m) 5 hrs.

We walk through the pretty valley, climb to a ridge and descend from there back to Ghami. From Ghami we follow wide and gentle path with some ascends and descends to Gelling with its extensive barley field. As in all the settlements of Mustang, the white and ochre-painted houses are constructed using mud and stones, with roofs made of twigs, straw and a mixture of mud and pebbles.

Day 15 (May 28):  Gelling – Chaile (6 hrs walk)

From Gelling descend and ascend same way as we walked before on the way towards Lo Manthang. We stay overnight at Chaile.

Day 16 (May 29): Chaile - Kagbeni

We trek to Kagbeni following back the same route as we took a few days earlier.

Day17 (May 30):  Kagbeni - Jomsom

We trek to Jomsom following back the same route as we took a few days earlier.

 Day 18 (May 31): Jomsom – Pokhara 900 m

We take another incredible morning mountain flight to Pokhara enjoying the mountain range. Once we check into the hotel in Pokhara we will have leisurely time to find some soothing massage, chilled beer or relaxing stroll around lake side. The relaxing and leisurely time in Pokhara today should give us some good recovery from the tiredness of pedaling for many days in the high mountains.

Day 19 (June 01): Pokhara – Kathmandu 1400m,7 hrs drive

We drive back to Kathmandu on the same highway we took to go to Pokhara earlier. Another six hours on the highway will give us time to observe the villages and towns on the way from a different angle. After reaching Kathmandu and checking into hotel, we will have some free time to wander around the streets of Thamel.

Day 20 (June 02): Love Kathmandu Tour (Hidden places in Kathmandu and Durbar square)

Walk with us around the local town in Kathmandu to experience the local life and culture. If you are looking for the theme-based walking tour in the center of the Kathmandu valley, the tour lets you a great opportunity to experience historical, cultural and spiritual affluence to unveil the social and historical mysteries. Bustling city, to view the artistic Kathmandu Sightseeing Tour bequeaths you an opportunity to capture the snaps of the centuries old monuments and historical crafts in the Kathmandu city. On this walking tour, we explore the Local market of Ason, glass beads market at Indrachowk, oldest supermarket at New Road, Kilagal, and Hidden Stupa etc.

After exploring these hidden charms of Kathmandu, we walk to Kathmandu Durbar Square. It is famous for its unique historical, cultural and religious traditions. The most unique experience in the square is the visit to the temple of living goddess “Kumari”. Durbar square walking tour will be a perfect mixture of culture, history, art, architecture and traditional values prevalent in Kathmandu valley.

Day 21 (June 03): Departure Day

We will drive you to airport for the departure flight three prior to your flight schedule.

Cost Includes

  • Pick up and drop off service on your arrival and departure flights
  • Tea house (Lodge) accommodations during the trek
  • Nepal’s  3 star level hotel accommodation in Kathmandu and pokhara with breakfast.
  • All major meals with tea & coffee during the trek( 3 times a day) during the trek. with
  • A professional trekking  Guide and necessary number of supporting crew members
  • All food, drinks, accommodation, drinks and Insurance for trekking crew.
  • Flight to Jomsom and back to Pokhara
  • Mustang Special permit and other necessary permits for the trekking
  • Guide, car and entrance permit for Kathamndu and pokhara city tour.
  • Down jacket, Down sleeping bag and  duffel bag
  • All taxes.

Cost Excludes

  • Clients Travel insurance
  • Bar bill and other personal expense.
  • Lunch and Dinner in Kathmandu and pokhara.
  • Gratuities to guide, porters and driver (Not mandatory but expected as customary thank you for the service)
  • Any other expenses caused by some unforeseen and uncontrollable situations that may arise during the trip

What to bring

This list outlines the required things to bring during the trekking hours. There are various selections and brands that you can have your own choice. Those equipments can be bought and hire easily at a reasonable price in Kathmandu.

General

  1. Down sleeping bag (you can borrow with us if required).
  2. Duffel or Rucksack bag  (you can borrow with us if required).
  3. Daypack
  4. Down Jacket (you can borrow with us if required).
  5. Flish liner (you can borrow with us if required).
  6. Walking poles (Walking poles (optional, you can borrow with us if required).
  7. Water bottle with purification tablets.
  8. Hand wash liquids.
  9. Lip guard.
  10. Sun block cream.
  11. Toiletry kit. Be sure to include toilet paper stored in a plastic bag, hand wipes, and liquid hand sanitizer, towel, soap, etc.

Upper Body - Head / Ears / Eyes

  1. Cap and ears covering hat. 
  2. Sun glasses
  3. Head torch.
  4. Ear-muffs and neck warmer is another piece of gear for extra warmth (optional)

Hand

  1.  Hand gloves

Core Body

  1. T-shirts.
  2. Light and weight thermal tops.
  3. Light jacket.
  4. Wind and rain jacket.
  5. Shirts

Lower Body – Legs

  1. Long and short hiking pants.
  2.  lightweight long underwear.
  3. Rain and windproof trousers.

Feet

  1. Thin and thick socks.
  2. trekking boots, light  shoes and sandle.

Medicines and First Aid Kits

(Our guide will carry the first aid kit bag during the trek.  We still recommend you to bring your personal first aid kit as you feel it necessary).

  1. Headache and fever medicine.
  2. Ibuprofen for general aches and pains.
  3. Burnt cream.
  4. Immodium or Pepto bismol capsules for upset stomach and diarrhea.
  5. Diamox (commonly prescribed as Acetazolamide). Please discuss with us before starting to take this medicine.
  6. Antibiotics.
  7. blister treatments such as mole skin, hand plasts band-aids, some waterproof tape, anti-infection ointments, etc.

Miscellaneous

  1. Passport and extra passport photos (2 copies).
  2. Durable wallet / pouch for travel documents, money and passport.
  3. Pocket knife.
  4. bandanas.
  5. Favorite snack foods and energy bars
  6. Paperback books, cards, mp3 player. Avoid players with moving hardware as it may not function. Remember, keep these items light weight
  7. Binoculars.
  8. Camera.

 

All garments should be kept dry using waterproof stuff sacks or large puncture resistant plastic bags.

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