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Tiji Festival Trek

Abhishek Subedi June 24, 2020

Tiji Festival Trek is a spiritual festival celebrated usually in May to overcome any obstacles in a year ahead and for the well being throughout the year. On the occasion of this worldly popular festival people from all around the world come here to take part in the Tiji festival. You can combine your trip with Tiji Festival Trek. Buddhist monks perform breathtaking dances with their colorful costumes. This dance symbolizes battle against negativity and gives the message of positivism. To enjoy the Tiji festival to the fullest it is better not to bring your kids along with. This is a festival trek in the upper mustang region.

Tiji Festival Trek

About The Tiji Festival Trek

Cultural meaning of celebrating the Tiji festival is based on dharma (cosmic law and order). In nature, there are ethically two factors. One is good force and another is evil force or gods and demons. These two factors always have to fight against each other. Fundamental truth of nature is that there should always be peace and order in the world. Dharma has such a power that can fight against any demonic powers because it has the weapon of truth and peace. So, the mission of dharma is to prevail in peace in the world. Trek in the shadows of Dhaulagiri and Annapurna along the Kali Gandaki River en-route to Mustang pass through white-washed mountain villages, alongside colorful old Buddhist shrines/monasteries and temples carrying traditional Tibetan cultures. 

Isolated from the world for centuries it is perhaps one of the last truly untouched examples of Tibetan culture and is known as “The Last Forbidden Kingdom.” The date of the festival is based on the Tibetan calendar and changes every year but usually occurs in May. To experience Tiji is to step back in time. You are immersed in the sights and sounds of rituals that explode in vibrant colour and extraordinary sounds at this unique and amazing festival depicting the battle of good over evil. Tiji Festival trek is an outstanding journey into one of the last Tibetan cultures existing today. A true gem of the Himalayas, virtually unchanged for centuries, set in breathtaking wilderness.

Day 1 Kathmandu to Pokhara

The journey starts from the Kathmandu valley from where the bus ride of about 5 to 6 hours will take you to the beautiful city of Pokhara. Through this ride travellers can enjoy the scenic views of beautiful river valleys, alongside terraced fields of barley and rice and over green hills blanketed with lush vegetation. When you arrive at the Pokhara valley there you will witness the beautiful lakes, hills and mountain ranges. The travellers will enjoy the evening here and stay here for a night.  

Day 2 Fly to Jomsom

The day begins with the fly between the snow capped pinnacles of Annapurna and Dhaulagiri to Jomsom. You can see the beautiful views of beautiful landscapes, canyons and Himalayas. From here the hike starts at Kagbeni  and there is a common checkpoint before entering Kagbeni. This checkpoint has been in this place from ages when trading between Nepal and Tibet used to take place.

Day 3 Kagbeni to Chele

The trail takes you towards the east bank of the Kali Gandaki River. The travellers have to cross a few edges to Tangbe town. This town is a maze of thin back streets among whitewashed houses, fields of buckwheat, grain, wheat and apple orchards. You can hike to the top of Nilgiri which rules the southern horizon of Kagbeni. After 2 hours of walk you will reach Chusang town. Then, travellers have to cross the stream and keep moving to an immense red piece of combination that has tumbled from the precipices above, shaping a passage through which the Kali Gandaki flows. You have to walk past the Kali gandaki valley and climb steeply up a rough channel to Chele.

Tiji Festival Trek

Day 4 Chele to Geling

Today’s trekking route will take you through the barren path, alongside the side of a terrific gorge to pass a stone cairn at 3540 metres. The path at that point makes a long slow drop to Samar town.  You can get the glimpse of Annapurna far toward the south of the region. The travellers have to move up above Samar to an edge and plummet into an enormous canyon. The route proceeds through another valley field, crosses a stream and moves up to an edge at 3800 metres. From here, you have to alowly move towards 3770 metres altitude and plummet into Geling Village.

Day 5 Trek to Charang Via Ghar Gompa

The trail heads towards Drakmar through beautiful cliffs and green passages. Promptly leaving Ghami the path follows little fall and rising which takes around 45 minutes. You will arrive at the valley of Drakmar. There are a bunch of cliffs that offer views of the over town with vivid hillocks. Here travellers get an opportunity to see blue sheep while climbing the Mui La go at 4170m. Ghar Gompa is the most seasoned religious community of Nepal which was worked before Samey Monastery of Lhasa. This religious community is the Ngyinmapa group where the shrouded sacred writings of Padmasambhava were said to be found. From here travellers follow the  Tsarang Khola by means of Lo Ghekar as they reach Tsarang.

Day 6 Charang to Lomanthang

The trail ascends steadily until Lo- Gekar, Lo Gekar Gompa is older than Samye Gompa in Tibet. It is in fact, one of the oldest Gompas of the region. After visiting ti Lo Gekar , the hike continues to Mustang trek to Lomanthang. The route to Lomanthang is well defined with some minor climbing. From here, you have to pass the walled city of Lo along with the trail, then take a short descent, cross a stream and climb to the plateu of Lomanthang. 

Tiji Festival Trek

Day 7 Tiji Festival in Lomanthang

1st Day- The Tiji Festival begins with the worshiping ceremony and assembly of the monks that offer the Vajrasatwa in the Chhode monastery. Then the monks are gathering to blow drums, cymbals, and horns to announce the beginning of the festival. Afterward, rolling out of an enormous Thanka in the south wall of the square masked dancers, dance with full vigor to chase away the demons. 

Day 8 Tiji Festival in Lomanthang

2nd Day- The King and the residents of the Lo kingdom gather together with a great treat wearing the traditional costume. It made it more attractive with the masked dances and rendered more aggressively.

Day 9 Tiji Festival in Lomanthang

3rd Day- The third day is the final day of the festival and starts with the ceremonial destruction of the remains of demons. The Mustang Tiji festival Trek ends with cheering since the people burn down the dummy of the devil. The Tiji festival gains its mythical value because it has at a time lost and regained its worth. What the mysterious hidden behind. So, the residents of the Upper Mustang region devoted themselves to saving the cultures and traditions of the Tiji festival. Therefore, Mustang Tiji Festival Trek is a favorite as a festive event in Upper Mustang. All over the world are fascinating in observing the Tiji festival. Likewise, The Tiji Festival 2021 ends with the above activities.

Day 10 Lomanthang to Ghami

The climax of the trek has finished descending back through some villages’ ancient monasteries and offering the last glimpse of LoManthang and walk down to Ghami. 

Tiji Festival Trek

Day 11 Ghami to Samar

This is the same route you will take while heading to Lomangthang bypassing Nyi-La and descend to Samar with beautiful scenery of Annapurna range.

Day 12 Samar to Kagbeni

Trek to Kagbeni is easy to walk passing through a narrow path among white painted houses, cultivated fields and beautiful scenery of Annapurna and Nilgiri are in front. Finally, get to Kagbeni. There is an opportunity to visit a monastery which was built in the 15th century. 

Day 13 Kagbeni to Jomsom

Today is the last day of the trek to Jomsom, an easy walk along the bank of Kali Gandaki River. Jomsom is a busty place due to an administrative quarter of Mustang district. There is an opportunity to explore ancient Thakali tradition, culture flora and fauna in the Eco-cultural museum in Jomsom. 

Tiji Festival Trek

Day 14 Jomsom to Pokhara

The travellers will take a flight back to Pokhara.  The remaining afternoon can be spent exploring the beautiful landscapes, lakes and hills of the city. You can also roam around the market area of the Pokhara in the night and get yourself immersed in the limelight of the city.

Day 15 Pokhara to Kathmandu

It is time to bid farewell to the Pokhara valley and take a bus ride back to the Kathmandu valley. You can enjoy the beautiful landscapes, river valleys and clear sky through the window of the bus before reaching the city. 

Tiji Festival Trek trip lets you enjoy all the aspects of the Mustang. The visitors can indulge themselves in the beautiful and unique culture of the Himalayas and try the local cuisine and their distinct liquors. You can experience the Tiji Festival with keen eyes and your own point of perspectives.

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