Creative Holidays Nepal

Tiji Festival


Tiji Festival is an old festival that is being followed since long back. It is not only performed by the occupants of Upper Mustang but also is famous among all the Travellers from around the world. The festival is celebrated on 14th, 15th, and 16th of May. It is known as the most important and colorful festival of Upper Mustang. The Tiji Festival trekking is an exotic tour to unspoil and ancient Tibetan villages, rare medieval Buddhist arts, the exotic culture and the unique beauty of the Himalayan desert. Tiji Festival, one of the popular colorful Buddhist festivals is celebrated more than five hundred years ago in Mustang. The Tiji Festival in Mustang is a three-day ritual known as "The chasing of the Demons" and it is centered on the Tiji myth. Tiji tells the story of a deity named Dorje Jono who battle against his demon father to save the Kingdom of Mustang from destruction. The festival is celebrated to pray God for water and good crops. During the festival, the monks dress in traditional manner and masks and dance which supposedly to drive the evil spirits away. People in Mustang strongly believed that the Tiji festival bring the hope and peace and protect them from evil forces. It base of the myth of a deity Dorje Shunu also called Vajrakila, who took rebirth to subdue all the evil forces and demons that created hell and suffering on earth. Through the power of Tiji festival dances and the variety of forms he takes, The deity defeats the demons and thereby bring peace and prosperity to the kingdom. Thus the festival depicts the victory of good over evil.

  • Trip Duration: 17 Days
  • Trip Grading: Moderate Plus
  • Max Altitude: 3800 m
  • Best Time: May - August
  • Trip Mode: Tea House

Day 1

Arrive at the airport and transfer to a hotel.Stay overnight and prepare for the trek.

Day 2
Flight or Drive to Pokhara, 25 minutes flight or 6-7 hour drive.

We will drive you to the Domestic Airport for 25 minutes flight to Pokhara. Or if you wish you can take a Tourist bus to Pokhara about 4-5 hour drive exploring & enjoying with scenic beauty all the way around. Pokhara offers magnificent views of Dhaulagiri, Manaslu, Machhapuchhare and others. In the evening, a boating trip on Phewa Lake will be followed where you can enjoy the spectacular views of Annapurna Himalaya Range. Visit Bindavasini Temple lying in middle of the lake and enjoy the lakeside.Stay overnight.

Day 3
Pokhara fly to Jomsom and trek to Kagbeni (2,858m):20 minutes flight and Walking Distance 3-4 hours

We will take a flight early in the morning to Jomsom of about 25min with spectacular views of Mountains. From here onwards it is very windy in the afternoon; trail is quite barren with craggy rocks and sand and is mostly flat. The picturesque peaks of Nilgiri, Dhaulagiri, Tukuche Peak and Dhampus are spectacular all the way. You walk on gently undulating trails to reach Kagbeni. Kagbeni provides you with a taste of scenes to come in upper Mustang, with its narrow alleyways and tunnels, irrigation canals, green fields of wheat and barley.Stay overnight.

Day 4
Kagbeni to Chele (3050m): Walking Distance 5-6 hours

We enter upper Mustang and follow the east bank of the river over a series of small ridges. The trail leads us through the scenic picturesque villages surrounded by fields of wheat, barley and buckwheat, interspersed with small apple orchards. The trek now leaves the Kali Gandaki valley and climbs steeply up a rocky gully to Chele.Overnight at Chele.

Day 5
Chele to Ghiling (3806m): Walking Distance 6-7 hours

The climb continues along steep, treeless and dry terrain, along the side of a spectacular deep canyon to pass a cairn of rock. Climb above Samar and descend into a large gorge and go into another valley along the surrounding of cool streams and junipers trees, crossing a stream and climbs up to a ridge at 3800m. We climb to Taklam La Pass (3,624m/11,923 ft) through plateaus and narrow stretches with views of Tilicho Peak, Yakawa Kang and Damodar Danda. The trail then drops steeply to the whitewashed buildings of Ghiling.Overnight at Ghiling.

Day 6
Ghiling to Charang (3575m): Walking Distance 4-5 hours

The track descends below the blue, grey and red cliffs across the valley to a steel bridge across the Tangmar Chu. Then climb to a plateau and passes the longest and most spectacular Mani walls in Nepal. From the end of the wall the trail heads east to the village of Charang (Tsarang) with a maze of fields, willow trees and houses separated by stone walls at the top of the Charang Chu canyon. Overnight at Charrang.

Day 7
Charang to Lo- Manthang (3700m): Walking Distance 5-6 hours

The trail descends about 125m from Charang, crosses the Tsarang Chu and follows the track to a cairn on a ridge opposite the village at 3580m, then enters the Tholung village. Then the trail further ascends gently to the 3,850m windy pass of Lo, from where you can see the Lo-Manthang Valley (3700m), views of the walled city appear magnificent with its hills on the Tibetan Border. A short descent leads onto the plain of Aspiration and then the trail crosses a stream and climbs up onto the plateau of Lo-Manthang.

Day 8
The Tiji Festival begins 1 day of Tiji

Early in the afternoon, horns resounded, announcing the two twelve-foot copper dunchens, with their elephantine blurting, followed by two double-reeled horns, all accompanied by drum and cymbals. Next, an ancient and enormous Thanka three stories high was unrolled down the entire south wall of the square. The Thanka portrayed Padma Sambhava or (Guru Rimpoche) who brought this ceremony to Tibet in the 8th century." Late afternoon, in high wind and blowing dust, eleven lamas in maroon and gold, wearing high red hats, come from the palace and take their places along the wall beneath the thanka, with Tashi Tenzing on the elevated seat just in the center. The masked dancers start the portrayal of the Tiji myth then Dorje Jono 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.

Day 9
Second Day of Tiji Festival

On the second day of Tiji, We’ll see Tibetan women in their traditional clothing and colorful jewelry, monks in their robes and dancers in elaborate costumes. The King of Mustang "wears a whole crown of tiny river pearls set off by dozens of large red coralline tones interspersed with matched ornaments of turquoise. 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.

Day 10
Third day of Tiji and end of Festival

On the third day, Tiji ends with the ceremonial destruction of the evil remains, represented by some long black yak hair and red torma cakes minced to a dark red gurry. The demons red remnants 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, each time to a wild cannonade from the old muzzle-loaders and a wave of cheers and smoke.

Day 11
Lo-Manthang trekking to Ghami via Lo-Geker (3520m): Walking Distance 6 hours

We will make our return take via highland rouge crossing the alpine meadows. After Lo Gekar, the trail climbs steeply to a cairn on a pass at 4000m, offering a last glimpse of Lo Manthang. Cross the Chogo La (4325m), the highest point on this trek. The trail makes descend beside a stream visiting ancient Ghar Gompa more than 1200 years old and meet the Guru Rimponche. Gompa is famous for its rock paintings and the legend of fulfilling our good wishes. The trail then drops steeply to the whitewashed buildings of Ghemi. Ghemi is surrounded by large fields most of which are barren.

Day 12
Ghami trekking to Samar (3520m): Walking Distance 5 hours

Today we continue down the valley to Ghiling in dusty and windy trail. The trail leads passing through the arid plateau and crops field in between, the walks may not be pleasant on the back as we suffer the wind on face in Kali Gandaki wind valley. Arrive Samar; it is small village with nice terraces and people follow the Tibetan lifestyle and tradition here.

Samar to Kagbeni (2,858m): Walking Distance 6 hours

We will mostly walk along the bank of Kali Gandaki River with the views of natural vegetation and apple orchards to Kagbeni. Spend the night enjoying the ancient and uniqueness of the Kagbeni village.

Day 14
Kagbeni to Jomsom (2700): Walking Distance 3 hours

The last day of the trekking is easy day and flat working in the river bank. Trail passes through Eklebhatti and continues working to Jomsom. Arrive at Jomsom; celebrate the last day of the trekking with the trekking crew.

Day 15
Fly back to Pokhara, 20 minutes flight

An early morning we will take a short picturesque flight to Pokhara. The view of Annapurna and Dhaulagiri mountains and world's deepest gorge, Kali Gandaki are stunning. Relax whole day in Hotel or wander around Lake Side with fascinating mountains panorama view and nature charming.

Day 16
Pokhara to Kathmandu, 25 minutes flight or 6-7 hour drive.

Take a flight or drive by tourist bus/Private car to Kathmandu. At the evening you can have your last night in Nepal enjoying the Nepali cultural dinner show, taking some beautiful snaps and making up your mind for the returning journey.

Day 17
Farewell Departure

Arrive at the airport and check in for departure.