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This listing has one of the 10 most popular offers available in Asia & Oceania
Join Hearts and Tears for the ride of a lifetime into one of the most unexplored regions of the Himalayas. Upper Mustang provides experienced riders with an adventure that very few have dared to undertake. This ride is not for the faint-hearted person. It will push your riding skills, the bike, and endurance to the limit. The rewards are plentiful however as you get the chance to experience the last remaining Tibetan kingdom in all its glory. The majority of the tour rides close to 4000 meters (4800 meters maximum) on terrain which regularly encounters snowfall, landslides, and glacial melt. So get ready to take deep breaths!
During the tour, you will be accommodated at remote guesthouses chosen by Hearts and Tears. Accommodation is on a twin-share basis (two people per room in a single bed each), with attached western bathroom. Toilet paper is provided at each accommodation but it is wise to bring your own roll for stops during the day.
The briefing session kicks off the evening before the tour starts at 17:00 at the Hearts and Tears' clubhouse located in Pokhara. The briefing session is factored into the tour dates. Accommodation is also included on the night of the briefing session.
The briefing session gives you a chance the meet the Hearts and Tears' crew, your fellow riders, and your bike! You meet in the clubhouse which is a short walk from your hotel, enjoy a beer, and then get even more excited about the upcoming ride. A welcome package is provided to every rider which contains the itinerary, route map, buff, some stickers, and a Hearts and Tears t-shirt.
Matt usually conducts the sessions, and over some local snacks, he will go through the tour details and explain how it all works. It's a time to ask any questions you may still have, but more importantly, it's a time to get familiar with everyone (and place bets on who's going to come off first!). By about 19:00, the session is over, giving you a chance to head out for dinner and explore Pokhara before the riding starts the following day.
Relax by the lake and take in the beautiful surrounds by day. Meet your riding team, your trusty steed, and tour briefing by night. Tomorrow you ride!
Get familiar with your bike with a ride through chaotic traffic, along winding rivers, into quaint villages, and countless corners! The route is designed to give you the confidence and local knowledge needed to tackle.
The first stop today is the birthplace of Buddha at Lumbini. Visiting the holy grounds gives significance to your journey as your trip continues north towards Tibet - a region dominated by the Buddhist culture. After Lumbini you will take an absolutely spectacular route to the remote organic farm.
After a breakfast of smoked bacon and other local foods, you will take the spiritual Kali Gandaki river north. It's an amazing route and the local villages are incredibly fun. You'll be introduced to friends along the way and cross numerous suspension bridges en-route. Tonight, you will stay at a restored palace.
Today, you will ride north and enter the region of Mustang. You'll pass through the world's deepest gorge, some incredible alpine forests, and go ballistic as you head higher and higher.
Enter the moonscape of Mustang as you leave the vegetated landscape behind you. It's a big day today as you take in the stunning Himalayan views and eventually arrive at the walled capital - Lo Manthang!
Ride up to Kora La (4600 meters) at the Tibetan Border and feel the intoxicating effect of the thin air. On the way back to Lo, you will have a stop in at the Chosur Caves and explore the limestone formations.
Follow the trail of mythical demons and dragons as you see the blood-stained cliffs of Dhakmar, the slain dragon at Ghami and spin the wheels of Nepal's longest mani-wall before settling in at Ghami for the night.
Decend from the Tibetan plateua and ride south to the world below. You will stop in at Samar for lunch - a quaint Tibetan village and then drop down to the apple orchards at Marpha for the night.
Today you enter thick air again. Your energy builds, your concentration increases, and the speed picks up as the bumpy road is now tackled with ease.
Ever wondered what a knight felt like returning home from a victorious battle? Well maybe, just maybe, it was a little you do today. A freaking here! You have done it. Upper Mustang.
Note: In Nepal, an International Driving Permit (IDP) is required to legally ride a motorcycle in Nepal. These can be purchased for about 30 USD in your home country before departing.
Hearts and Tears' trusty steeds are the infamous Royal Enfield Bullet. Its history is incredible and some quick googling can give you a good insight into this vintage bike. They mainly ride the Himalayan 400cc these days but also have the 500cc and 350cc Bullet models in their fleet. They also ride 250cc dirt bikes on their Enduro tours. They command a much different style of the tour as compared to the Royal Enfield so they don't mix the bikes with the same group.
Hearts & Tears requires a bike rental deposit of 200 USD.
Spectacular winding roads cling precariously to the sides of the mountains. With few bridges and no tunnels, there are virtually no straight sections of road. Corner after corner, hour after hour, a 200-kilometer ride is a long way in Nepal. It’s an extreme terrain.
Bikes and buses are the most common form of transport in Nepal. Riding is great fun and very different to the aggressive car-focused road culture of the west. Local people usually stick to the left side of the road, but there’s a chaotic, anything-goes style thrown into the mix. Literally anything could happen anywhere, at any time. It seems crazy at times and you’ll witness stuff that defies belief.
Driving is a team sport, and everyone joins in. Truck drivers give various signals using the horn, lights, indicators, and their hands. Buses employ a boy to hang out the side of the vehicle and wave signals. Motorcycle passengers help out too. If you use your indicators as you do at home, you will be sending the wrong messages. If you know the local way, it’s easy. Hearts and Tears will show you how.
You will ride in convoy, single-file, with a sensible amount of space between bikes. The road captain leads the group and the mechanic rides as sweeper at the rear to assist with any mechanical issues. The support jeep then follows the pack carrying major tools/spares and your luggage. The support vehicle does not chase the tail of the pack and is normally about 30 minutes behind.
Nepal is the most bio-diverse country on Earth. The world’s highest peaks, many over 8000 meters, lie along the northern border with China. 150 kilometers to the south, at the Indian border, the scorched flatlands are near sea level. That’s the steepest incline anywhere and accordingly, the landscape and climate change dramatically with altitude.
Few people realize that Nepal is the world’s second-biggest water-producing nation, after Brazil. This sustains an incredible abundance of life. Woolly yaks trudge through Himalayan snow and ice, while rhinos and elephants forage in sweltering jungles below. Despite being a land-locked country, there are even freshwater dolphins. New species of flora and fauna, previously unknown to science, are discovered on a regular basis.
Nepal only stretches about 800 kilometers east to west, but maps fail to convey the scale of the scrunched-up mountainous landscape. The sheer size is hard to describe or capture in photos but perfect for exploring by motorbike.
On the tour, all of your meals are included. For dinner and breakfast, you can choose from an a la carte menu at the hotel, and when riding, you will stick with daal baat. Any drinks and snacks between meals are not included.
Safe drinking water can be found in the mountains at the various 'safe-drinking stations', but to avoid any issues, Hearts and Tears recommends always using bottled water. Before purchasing, check the seal in case it has tampered. A bottle of water costs 25 NPR in towns and up to 100 NPR in the mountains.
Nepal is all about daal baat, chiya, and momo's. Daal baat (literally meaning lentils and rice), is the main cuisine and is eaten twice a day by the locals. It is a large plate consisting of rice, lentil soup, a vegetable curry, mea curry, some pickles and sauce.
It is delicious and each household or restaurant will prepare the dish slightly differently. It is normally eaten at about 11 a.m. and then again at 7 p.m.
If you don't want meat you simply go without the meat curry dish, which is a small component of the meal anyhow. On tour, you will eat daal baat for most lunches as it is nutritious and easy to prepare for groups.
Between meals chiya (tea) is drunk consistently. It is similar to chai in India. Some tea, spices and lots of sugar and infused. In the winter time it is had with milk and in the warmer months kaloo chiya (black tea) is more common.
Momo's are also a favorite with everyone. They are similar to dumplings and originated from Tibet. They have a slightly thicker skin as compared to dumplings and are either filled with a chicken, buffalo or vegetable mix.
Tribhuvan International Airport
Transfer not provided
Please book your flight to arrive at Tribhuvan International Airport (KTM). Transfer from and to the airport is not included. Most major airlines fly into Kathmandu - which is the only international airport in Nepal.
Tourist buses leave Kathmandu every morning around 7 a.m. and cost between 10 to 25 USD. The first hour or two is congested, but the chaos is fascinating. The road winds its way through beautiful scenery. Buses normally arrive in Pokhara mid-afternoon at the tourist bus park, a 20 to 30 minutes' walk from Lakeside.
Taxis can be organized for around 100 USD one way. It’s cost-effective for two or three people and much more comfortable than a bus. Depart when you like, stop when you like, and get dropped off at your hotel. The downside to any form of road transport is that you can be delayed by traffic jams, accidents, or the occasional strike.
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