The Jomsom Muktinath Trek takes you to an ancient trade route between Tibet and Nepal and en-route you get upfront views of the majestic Himalayan range. As you hike along Jomsom Muktinath Trail, the natural elements of nature that are found in only this part of the world captivate your heart and stir your emotions to their core.
This Jomsom Muktinath Trek is a part of the Annapurna trek and in comparison to others, it is somewhat easier. One of the most significant features of this trek is that it can be done throughout the year as it falls under the rain shadow corridors of Nepal. This is a remarkable trek where you can explore Buddhist and Hindu cultures as well.
To mention some of the attractions of this trek are the spectacular mountain views along with the deepest gorge in the world. Muktinath is Nepal’s most famous pilgrimage site with one hundred and eight stone taps amidst its sacred premises.
Day 01: Drive from Kathmandu to Pokhara (914m.)
Day 02: Drive from Pokhara (915 m.) to Phedi (1130 m.) and trek from Phedi to Pothana
Day 03: Trek from Pothana to Ghandruk (1940m.)
Day 04: Trek from Ghandruk to Tadapani (2650m.)
Day 05: Trek from Tadapani to Ghorepani (2853m.)
Day 06: Trek from Ghorepani to Tatopani (1189m.)
Day 07: Trek from Tatopani to Ghasa (2013m.)
Day 08: Trek from Ghasa to Marpha (2667m.)
Day 09: Trek from Marpha to Jomsom (2713m.) to Kagbeni (2897m.)
Day 10: Trek from Kagbeni to Muktinath (3795 m.)
Day 11: Trek from Muktinath to Jomsom (2713 m.)
Day 12: Fly from Jomsom to Pokhara
Day 13: Drive from Pokhara to Kathmandu by tourist bus
Day 01: Drive from Kathmandu to Pokhara (914m.) takes about seven hours.
This drive will take most of the morning, leaving much of the afternoon to explore the various sites of Pokhara.
Pokhara is tourist's paradise with full of natural as well as cultural heritage sites such as lakes, caves, temples of Buddhist and Hindus along with mountains. You can observe views to the north across the hills and Phewa Tal (lake) to the white peaks of the Annapurna and Dhaulagiri ranges. Stay overnight at hotel
Day 02: Drive from Pokhara (915 m.) to Phedi (1130 m.) and trek from Phedi to Pothana takes about five hours.
From here you begin your trek to Pothana (1900m.). The trail ascends all the way to Pothana through forests until you reach the village called Dhampus. This is a Gurung village which gives you an opportunity to look at the magnificent views of Annapurna ranges that include Lamjung Himal and Manaslu. The ascending trail follows to Pothana through the forests. This is a small village which is surrounded by forests having marvelous mountain views. Stay overnight at lodge.
Day 03: Trek from Pothana to Ghandruk (1940m.) takes about six hours.
While trekking from Pothana to Ghandruk the trail ascends gently to Deurali and then begins to descend to Bherikharka through forests. You then follow a flat path until you reach Landruk village. The path you follow to Landruk is really exhilarating as you pass through many local villages rich in culture, terraced fields and numerous green hills. From here the trail descends to Modi khola (stream) and ascends all the way to Ghandruk village which is a big Gurung village. Available here is a handicraft center and Gurung museum. From this village you can see good views of Annapurna South, Hiunchuli, Gangapurna (7455m.), Annapurna III (7755m.) and Fishtail. Stay overnight in lodge.
Day 04: Trek from Ghandruk to Tadapani (2650m.) takes about four hours.
The trek begins through the Gurung village with beautiful Rhododendron trees, amidst the chirping of birds that seem to be welcoming trekkers to their area. On the way you see a stream that runs down with its clear and pure water as you climb, you come across a place named Bherikharka with some tea shops and lodges for a rest. The trek then continues through a forest of Rhododendron trees until arriving at Tadapani. Stay overnight at lodge.
Day 05: Trek from Tadapani to Ghorepani (2853m.) takes about five hours.
Today’s trek starts with a short decline until a small stream and then uphill through Rhododendron trees. You then come across a place named Banthahiti with some tea houses and lodges. From here, the trail ascends through the forests up to Gurung Hill. Your trail then descends through the forest until Ghorepani. Stay overnight at lodge.
Day 06: Trek from Ghorepani to Tatopani (1189m.) takes about seven and half hours.
This day offers you an early morning trip to Poon Hill (3232m.) to enjoy the sunrise view over Mt. Dhaulagiri (8167m.), Tukuche Peak (6920m.), Nilgiri (6940m.), Varaha Shikhar (7847m.), Mt. Annapurna I (8091m.), Annapurna South (7219m.), Annapurna III (7855m.), Machhapuchhare (6993m.), Annapurna IV (7525m.), Annapurna II (7937m.), Lamjung Himal (6931m.) and other numerous snowcapped mountain peaks. After breakfast, you trek from Ghorepani to Tatopani. After descending through the rhododendron forest, fine vistas open up as you approach Chitre, with the Dhaulagiri Range straight ahead. The path then leads through terraced fields to Sikha, a Magar village clustered on a ridge. You continue to descend, gradually at first and then more steeply to cross the Ghar Khola. After a short climb you then cross the Kali Gandaki on a large suspension bridge and from here it is only a short distance upstream to Tatopani. Tatopani takes its name from the hot springs near the river below the village. At Tatopani you can enjoy a Natural Hot Springs sauna. Stay overnight at lodge.
Day 07: Trek from Tatopani to Ghasa (2013m.) takes about five hours.
The followed route ascends gently up the Kali Gandaki Gorge, the deepest gorge in the world, towards the village of Dana, which is surrounded by orange groves. From autumn to winter, baskets of these oranges are offered for sale to passing travelers. Just beyond the small hamlet of Rupse, a thundering waterfall cascades down beside the trail. From here, the trail enters the steepest and narrowest section of the gorge, but the layered stone path is well-constructed and wide. When the rock cliffs end, you descend to the river before making the short climb back up to Ghasa. This is the first Thakali village you come across and the houses here are all built in the flat-roofed Tibetan style. Stay overnight at lodge.
Day 08: Trek from Ghasa to Marpha (2667m.) takes about six and half hours.
The trek ascends crossing the wide valley of Kali Gandaki for about six to seven hours. Throughout the trek you enjoy hiking below the mighty Rhododendron trees and many ethnic villages with a sparse population of Gurungs, Thakalis and a few Tibetans. On the way to Marpha you trek along the banks of Kali Gandaki through apple orchards which you can eat for free if it happens to be the fruit season. Marpha is a big village enriched with a Buddhist Monastery in between the village which has its own cultural importance. Stay overnight at lodge.
Day 09: Trek from Marpha to Jomsom (2713m.) to Kagbeni (2897m.) takes about five hours.
You continue to follow the wide valley of the Kali Gandaki, passing through Khobang and Tukuche. Tukuche is a delightful village where narrow alleyways and houses are built around enclosed courtyards which attempt to provide some shelter from the winds which howl through the gorge. The wind generally picks up about midday, but will at least be blowing at your back as you head up to Jomsom. After passing through stone-walled orchards, a stone gate marks the entrance to Marpha. White walled houses line both sides of the narrow paved street, under which flows a cleverly made drainage system. Marpha makes a good lunch stop and the courtyards of the many lodges make ideal resting and refreshment places. The local apple brandy is especially well-known! As the trail continues towards Jomsom, the landscape becomes increasingly arid and impressive with its mixture of brown, yellow and grey landscapes, contrasting with the white snow caps of Tilicho and Nilgiri. By afternoon, the stiff winds begin to blow, hastening your way to Jomsom. Stay over night in Jomsom where the howling winds gently take you to a well earned sleep. Stay overnight at lodge.
Day 10: Trek from Kagbeni to Muktinath (3795 m.) takes about 4 hours.
The trail steeply ascends for a couple of hundred meters. While walking you can enjoy a beautiful deserted landscape, caves, old Tibetan style villages, apple gardens, yak and sheep herds and the peaceful and happy local folks. You can view Thorong La valley straight up to Muktinath. You can also enjoy a delicious lunch at Jharkot and visit a Monastery believed to be built in the 15th century. You then head towards Muktinath following a steeply ascending path for half an hour. You stay overnight at Muktinath village. From here you hike to Rani Pauwa (3700m.), an important pilgrimage site for both Hindus and Buddhists. Here you come across natural flaming which really exhilarates you. At this point, you can see splendid views of Dhaulagiri (8165m), Nilgiri (7061m.) and others. Next you hike for fifteen minutes to reach Muktinath Temple, where you can enjoy a holy bath of 108 Taps. The people of Kagbeni, Jharkot and Muktinath are close to the life style, culture, religion and ideas of the Tibetan people. Stay overnight at lodge.
Day 11: Trek from Muktinath to Jomsom (2713 m.) takes about 5 hours.
Today you continue down for an early two hours and then walk along a flat path until you reach Jomsom. Between the walk lies Eklebhatti village where you find tea houses and lodges. Stay overnight at lodge.
Day 12: Fly from Jomsom to Pokhara which takes about 25 minutes.
The flights are available during the morning time. A strong breeze blows during and after and frequent changes in the weather prevent flights from landing and taking off in the afternoon. During the flights in the morning, the skies look very clear which allows you to enjoy splendid views of different mountain peaks. Stay overnight at hotel in Pokhara.
Day 13: Drive from Pokhara to Kathmandu by tourist bus that takes about seven hours.
While driving from Pokhara to Kathmandu, you head up to Damauli, Dumre, Muglin and Kurintar where Nepal's first Cable car is operated to reach to Manakamana Temple. From Naubishe you climb up to Thankot, the gateway to Kathmandu.
We had a wonderful 7-day trek from Jomsom to Beni along the river valley in the Annapurna region. Our guide, Ang Dawa Sherpa, had a comprehensive knowledge of the region, it's history, travel routes a times, mountain characteristics, and alternative options. His English was also superb. The trek route was beautiful with a varied terrain & variety of vegetation, environment settings.
"Why look for the rest when you have found the best" was a signboard we have seen in Pokhara after our 13 days trekking and is definitely applied to Nepal Environmental Trekking.