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Special Upper Mustang Tiji Festival Trek

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Difficulty : Moderate

Reference Code: SUMTFTNP

Trip Start: Kathmandu

Trip Start Date: April 29, 2021

Trek Start: Jomsom

Trek Start Date: May 02, 2021

Trek Days: 15 Days

Maximum Altitude: 4,170m.

Age: 15 years to 60 years

Season: Spring

Accommodation: Lodge

Service: Full board

Destination: Nepal

Trip End: Kathmandu

Trip End Date: May 19, 2021

Trek End: Jomsom

Trek End Date: May 16, 2021

Trip Durations: 21 Days

Physical Rating: Moderate

Group Size: 4-16

Theme: Walking and Cultural Observation

Meals: Standard

Tiji Festival Trek is a fascinating annual three-day festival consisting of Tibetan rituals that celebrate the myth of a son who had to save the Mustang kingdom from destruction. The festival is indigenous to Lo-Manthang, Upper Mustang. Over the Mustang Tenchi Festival time monks dressed in elaborate costumes and masks perform dances and rituals that are supposed to drive away evil spirits. The Tiji Festival dances are all organized by the Choedhe Monastery, which belongs to the Sakya sect of Buddhism. The monastery is headed by a Rimpoche. About 65 monks from Lo Manthang, Nhenyul and Chhosyer reside in this monastery.

The Rituals and The Festival

The Tenchi festival as a whole celebrates the victory of God over Demon and Good over Evil. During the three days, dance performances by the local monks of Chode monastery take place.

On the 1st day, the monks perform a dance called ‘Tsa Chaam’. This tells the story of the birth of ‘Dorji Sonam’- a reincarnated Buddha to a demon. This demon harassed the kingdom of Mustang and brought in havoc to the country. You can witness the monks enacting the harassment of the said demon on the people of Mustang.

On the 2nd day, the monks perform ‘NgaCham’. During this performance, Dorjee Sonam tries to return the demon to the Buddha realm.

On the 3rd and final day of the festival, the ‘Rha Chham’ dance takes place. On this ceremony, Dorjee Sonam triumphs over the evil demon and banishes him from Mustang.

The monk who plays the role of Dorjee Sonam does this by throwing an effigy. This effigy made from Tsampa (barley) represents the demon ‘Ma Tam Ru Ta’.

This defeat brings peace and prosperity to the land of Mustang. Every year Tiji festival takes place in the hope of spreading peace throughout the world.

Tiji Festival Permit:

Normally Upper Mustang Trekking Permits costs US $ 500 per person for 10 days. But during the Tiji festival we need to take 2 more extra days. 2 extra days will charged extra US $ 50 per day. In order to obtain the permit you need to have at least two members in a group. That means single permit won’t be allowed from the immigration. If you are single traveler, let us know, we can provide permits by joining you with other travelers group. We need your original passport copy to obtain the restricted area permits.

Tiji Festival 2021 Date:

For the Tiji Festival 2021 will be celebrate 09th May to 11th May 2021. Apart from strolling along the stunning and exceptional surroundings of Upper Mustang with the magnificent views of the snow-topped peaks, you can partake on this vibrant and lively festival which will be a lifetime experience.

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Day 01: (April 29, 2021; Thursday) Arrival in Kathmandu(1350m.) and transfer to hotel

Namaste! And welcome to Kathmandu, the colourful capital of Nepal where ornately carved balconies mingle with beautiful shrines and temples. Your adventure begins with a welcome meeting on arrival at the exit gate of Kathmandu airport. Our staff will welcome you and pick you to your accommodated hotel. Please seek our company palmplate to find our staff at the main exit gate of the airport. Rest of the day you can relax at the hotel or short evening walk around local market on your own as per your wish.

drive 45 mins

Day 02: (April 30, 2021; Friday) Rest and Preparation day

A well deserved rest day at cosy of hotel after a long tiring flight. This day, one can move around nearby local market to purchase or hire trekking equipment that is necessary for the trekking like sleeping bags, walking sticks etc, exchange currency as requirement or simply walk around in the local market or Kathmandu Durbar squire nearby with small entrance fee as per your preference on your own. Evening at the hotel lobby there will be pre-trip briefing in which you will be introduced with your trekking guide and explained about your trip in short, instruction for safety etc.

Day 03: (May 01, 2021; Saturday) Fly to Pokhara(820m.)

We have breakfast then leave for Pokhara, also known as The Lake City owing to the large number of lakes in the city. Upon our arrival in Pokhara, we are rewarded with magnificent views of the Himalayas including Dhaulagiri (8,167m), Manaslu (8,156m), Machhapuchhre (6,993m), the five peaks of Annapurna and others. We then check-in to our hotel and take a rest. We enjoy boating in the Fewa Lake and stroll in the city’s quaint streets. 

Drive 1:15 min Fly: 25 min

Day 04: (May 02, 2021; Sunday) Fly to Jomsom(2720m.) and Trek to Kagbeni(2810m.)

Today we will take an early morning flight to Jomsom which is famous for its apples, strong winds and the landscape. We begin our trek on an open trail alongside a beautiful valley. We pass through Eaklibatti village before reaching Jomsom which is ideally located at the bank of two rivers. The village is beautiful with flat-roofed houses and also has ruins of an old fortress.

Drive: 30 min; fly 22 min walk 2.5 hrs

Day 05: (May 03, 2021; Monday) Trek to Chele(3050m.)

We get our permits checked then begin our trek on a trail alongside the Kali Gandaki River. We walk on sand amidst strong winds before ascending on a hill. We reach the Tangbe Village and admire its narrow alleyways, white-washed houses, barley and buckwheat fields, and apple orchards. We continue our walk and pass another village and cross a river on our way. Next, we walk on a ridge before reaching Chele Village. 

Walk: 5-6 hours

Day 06: (May 04, 2021; Tuesday) Trek to Syangbochen(3800m.)

Our trek from today will be a little hard compared to what we experienced before.  Our walk today involves crossing two passes, Taklam La pass (3,624m) and Dajori La pass (3,735). On our way, we enjoy great views of Tilicho, Yakawa Kang and Damodar Danda and pass by Ramchung Cave. We descend further and reach Samar Village. From here we walk on a trail above the village and reach a ridge. Next, we descend on a steep trail to a stream and continue our trek to Syanboche.

6-7 hrs

Day 07: (May 05, 2021; Wednesday) Trek to Ghami(3520m.)

We ascend to the Yamda La pass at 3,850m. On the way, we pass by a few teahouses, chortens and beautiful villages. We trek through poplar forests and barley fields and reach Mui La at 4,170m. From here, we descend to Ghami which is one of the biggest villages in the Lo region. The village is beautiful with fields surrounding the entire village. 

5-6 hrs

Day 08: (May 06, 2021; Thursday) Trek to Tsarang(3560mn.)

Our trek today begins with a descent through a rough and often slippery trail. We then cross a suspension bridge over the Ghami Khola and begin ascending. The pathway is beautiful with mani walls along the trail. Next, we cross the Tsarang La Pass at 3870m and reach Tsarang village. The village lies atop the Charang Chu canyon with a huge fortress and a red gompa towards its east.

5-6 hrs

Day 09: (May 07, 2021; Friday) Trek to Lo Mangthang(3810m.)

We begin our trek by descending to a canyon and cross a river before beginning our uphill trek to Lo La pass which at 3950m. From the top of the pass we can admire the beautiful Lo Manthang village. From the pass we descend to Lo Manthang which is a beautiful walled village. From here the views of the Himalayas including Nilgiri, Tilicho and Annapurna I, Bhrikuti Peak as well as Damodar Kunda (pond) is quite good. 

3-4 hrs

Day 10: (May 08, 2021; Saturday) Tiji Festival observation day

On the 1st day, the monks perform a dance called ‘Tsa Chaam’. This tells the story of the birth of ‘Dorji Sonam’- a reincarnated Buddha to a demon. This demon harassed the kingdom of Mustang and brought in havoc to the country. You can witness the monks enacting the harassment of the said demon on the people of Mustang.

Day 11: (May 09, 2021; Sunday) Tiji Festival observation day

On the 2nd day, the monks perform ‘NgaCham’. During this performance, Dorjee Sonam tries to return the demon to the Buddha realm.

Day 12: (May 10, 2021; Monday) Tiji Festival observation day

On the 3rd and final day of the festival, the ‘Rha Chham’ dance takes place. On this ceremony, Dorjee Sonam triumphs over the evil demon and banishes him from Mustang.

Day 13: (May 11, 2021; Tuesday) Decent trek to Dhakmar(3820m.)

We trek on a different route when returning from Lo-Manthang. Our trail passes through Gyakar village which houses a century old Ghar Gompa with beautiful rock paintings. According to a local legend, anyone who makes a wish at the Gompa will have it fulfilled. We explore the Gompa and continue our trek to Drakmar.

6-7 hrs

Day 14: (May 12, 2021; Wednesday) Trek to Ghiling(3570m.)

We start our trek early to avoid strong winds and descend for the most part of the trek. Our trail passes through a dry plateau and fields before reaching Ghiling. The walk can be relatively difficult as we are most likely to experience strong winds on our face. Ghiling is mostly dry, but we still get good views of Dhaulagiri and Nilgiri mountains. We can tour the village around the evening. 

5-6 hrs

Day 15: (May 13, 2021; Thursday) Trek to Chhusang(2980m.)

We begin our trek after breakfast. We walk on the same trail as before going up to Lo Manthang. On the way to Chhuksang we can enjoy great views of the Himalayas and small villages we pass en route. 

5-6 hrs

Day 16: (May 14, 2021; Friday) Trek to Muktinath(3760m.)

The day trek starts down hill walk on dusty road around 2 hours and then to gradual up hill to reach Muktinath temple. Muktinath is a Bishnu temple, sacred to both Hindus and Buddhist. It is located in Muktinath Valley at the foot of the Thorung La mountain pass in Annapurna Region. It is one of the world's highest temple situated at the altitude of  3,760 m. The site is close to the village of Ranipauwa, which is sometimes mistakenly called Muktinath.

6-7 hrs

Day 17: (May 15, 2021; Saturday) Trek to Jomsom(2720m.)

The trail descends very quickly to the valley floor below, through a dramatic arid landscape, and continues to Jomsom. We continue walking to Marpha, which must be the cleanest village in the country. The long main street is paved with spotless flagstones winding past pristine white houses, each with piles of firewood neatly stacked to the roof. There are numerous well-kept lodges and Tibetan Craft shops. These two villages are the major villages on the Kali Gandaki trading route. We can enjoy the views of Tilicho Peak and Dhaulagiri.

4 hrs

Option: you can take local transportation from Muktinath to Jomsom if you feel too tired to walk.

Day 18: (May 16, 2021; Sunday)Fly to Pokhara(820m.)

We take an early morning flight to Pokhara. The airplane passes through a gorge between Annapurna and Dhaulagiri mountains making the flight itself an amazing experience. After arriving in Pokhara, we can spend the rest of the day in leisure.

Fly 22 min drive 30 min

Day 19: (May 17, 2021; Monday) Exploration day

Pokhara city offers vast activities and there is always be something to everyone from tranquality lover to extreme adventure seekers. A well deserved rest day after the trek is worthful in Pokhara and rest with the cozy of hotel on the shadow of most beautiful peak Mt. Machhapuchhere. Morning you can enjoy boating in Fewa Lake which is the most popular activities to all the visitors to Pokhara and evening you can roam around the local market. However, it also provides Zip flyers, ultra light flight over Annapurna Range, Para Glyding etc. Further there are many popular places like Rupa Lake, Begnas Lake, Bindabasini Temple, Davi's fall, Mahendra Cave, Bat Cave, International Mountain Museum in short distance where you can visit and observe the beauty of Pokhara Valley.

Day 20: (May 18, 2021; Tuesday) Fly to Kathmandu(1350m.)

After breakfast, we say goodbye to the beautiful northern skyline of Pokhara and fly towards Kathmandu. After reaching Kathmandu, we take a rest or do some souvenir shopping. 

Drive 30 min Fly 25 min

Day 21: (May 19, 2021; Wednesday) Final departure

We say 'Namaste' for memories that will last a lifetime. There are no activities planned for today and you are able to depart the hotel at any time. Check out time from the hotel is at 12 noon. If you are departing later, you can arrange luggage storage at the hotel. For your final departure, our staff will pick you up from the hotel and transfer to Kathmandu airport approximately 3 hours prior to your international flight time.

Drive: 45 min

Inclusion

Lodge basis
All ground transportation as per itinerary
3 night hotel accommodation in Kathmandu with B/B plan.
3 night hotel accommodation in Pokhara with B/B plan
TIMs (Trekking Information Management system) card
Annapurna Conservation Area Entry Fee
Special Restricted Area Entry fee (US$ 500 for 10 days and addition $100 for 2 days per person)
Domestic flight with airport tax:  KTM-PKH-JOM-PHK-KTM
Food for the member during the trek( 3 meals a day as per open lodge menu)
Lodge accommodation on twin sharing basis
First aid Kit (Nepalese Standard)
All required Nepalese staffs (salary, food, clothing, accommodation)
All Nepalese staffs insurance as per Nepalese Government rules
Company service charge and government taxes etc.

Exclusion

International flight with airport tax.
Nepalese Entry Visa fee
Food during stay in Kathmandu and Pokhara
All personal equipment and personal expenses
Photography Charges, Monument charges and Monument entry fees
Personal Medical and travel insurance(must cover helicopter rescue evacuation cost)
Personal Medicine
Telephone and internet charges
Laundry charges
Alcoholic beverage, bottled drinks and cold drinks during the trip
Rescue evacuation charges if required
Staff and porters Tips...

 

Equipment List

Clothing and Equipments List
» Pack to pack out - bring enough waterproof bags to carry all non-biodegradable rubbish back down the mountain.
» Remove all unnecessary packaging before leaving home.
» Bring enough warm dry clothes so that you can wrap up rather than burn firewood in the evenings.
» If you are going to trek higher than 5000m or you know it will be cold, buy an aluminum water bottle which can also be used as a hot water bottle at night.
» The easiest way to keep hydrated while trekking is to buy a 1 x liter platypus-drinking bladder to carry in your day pack.
» Make sure to buy proper trekking socks. Don’t buy synthetic socks as these promote sweating and can give you blisters. Always carry a few blister pads in your first aid kit and keep them handy in your day pack.
» Walking poles are very useful while trekking and helpful when descending.
» Please remember that waste disposal and recycling facilitates are limited in Nepal. When buying batteries make sure they are rechargeable and/or high quality so they last longer, and take them home to recycle.

More Lists
There is no definitive list. What you bring will vary according to the area, time of year and the length of your trek. Below is a suggested check list which you should adapt to your own needs. Ask yourself: Will there be snow/how long /high is the trek/are we camping?

» Good quality trekking boots with ankle support
» Lightweight shell/raincoat with hood
» Detachable fleece liner or separate fleece
» Fleece trousers
» Shorts and / or convertibles trousers- quick drying
» Sunglasses
» Sun hat and warm hat(good quality)
» Gloves
» Spare T-shirt x 3
» Sweat towel x 2
» Spare socks x 3 ( walking sock and thin inner sock)
» Small day sack
» Sun cream
» Small water bottle aluminum doubles as a hot water bottle.
» Iodine or water purifying kit,
» Soluble vitamin tablets to taste water or powder fruit drink
» Talcum powder
» Walking sticks or Trekking poles(good quality)
» Camp shoes/trainers/flip flops to wear in evening.
» Spare underwear 3
» Toilet kit
» Tissues
» Pen knife
» Bum bag
» Head torch(good quality)
» Biodegradable washing liquid / soap
» FILM
» CAMERA
» Ear plugs
» Sleeping bag liner(good quality)
» Sleeping bag(good quality-30)
» Bin bag/ gasbag to keep kit dry
» Small towel
» Lip balm
» Available in KTM

Personal First Aid (Aids Kit)
» Antiseptic
» Bandages
» Blister plasters
» Decongestant
» AMS medication like Diamox
» Eye drops – it can get very dusty on trails
» Paracetamol and/or ibuprofen
» Rehydration sachets, Imodium and antibiotics for traveler’s diarrhea
» Scissors
» Sterile dressing
» Sticking plasters and tape
» Throat lozenges / sweets
» Tweezers
» A sewing needle etc.

This trekking equipment list has been prepared by Adventure Zambuling Treks (P) Ltd.

April 29, 2021 to May 19, 2021

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