Mustang, located in the Dhaulagiri zone of northern Nepal, is a region brimming with natural beauty and cultural diversity. Divided into two parts, Lower Mustang and Upper Mustang, this area offers fascinating insights:
Lower Mustang: Renowned for Kagbeni and Muktinath, it’s a hub for pilgrims. It’s also a part of the Annapurna circuit trek and boasts vibrant apple farming.
Upper Mustang: Known for its breathtaking landscapes and unique culture. The region’s geographical location results in a semi-arid, cool climate. The majority of the population in Upper Mustang practices Buddhism, which deeply influences their daily lives.
Mustang, often referred to as the “Forbidden Kingdom,” enjoyed a period of prosperity during the 16th and 17th centuries. This region is renowned for its temples and remarkable Buddhist art. It served as a crucial waypoint for caravans traveling from India along the Kali Gandaki river into Tibet. These caravans engaged in trade, exchanging lowland goods like grain for Tibetan salt.
The people of Mustang are a blend of diverse ethnic groups like Gurung, Thakali, and Lopa. The Lopa, the original inhabitants, have a distinct culture and language, preserving their traditions for generations. Mustangi people are renowned for their warm hospitality, often inviting visitors to engage in daily activities like farming and cooking.