There are various modes of transportation to Jomsom and Muktinath that you can choose as per your travel style. Getting to Jomsom and Muktinath by helicopter or choosing a public bus or anything in between is your choice.
Keep reading to find out about your travel options. This travel guide will assist you in choosing the best mode of transportation as per your budget and travel style.
There is no direct flight from Kathmandu to Jomsom so you need to transit in Pokhara. You will be spending a night in Pokhara and boarding a morning flight to Jomsom on the following day. Since it gets very windy in the afternoon, flights to Jomsom are scheduled in the morning.
Enjoy a scenic flight to Pokhara. Get a seat at the right-hand side of a plane to savor the stunning views of the Himalayan range. The flight fare from Kathmandu to Pokhara is around US $125 per person. For Nepalese or Indian citizens it osts around NRP 5,000 per person.
You will reach Pokhara in approximately 30 minutes when flying from Kathmandu. The major airlines operating a flight between these cities are Buddha Air, Simrik Airlines, and Yeti Airlines. There are over 10 flights daily. The first flight leaves at 6:45 am and the last flight is around 4 pm.
A scenic flight of approximately 20 minutes takes you to Jomsom. There are around 8 flights scheduled from Pokhara to Jomsom every day. Enjoy gorgeous aerial views of snowy mountains including Dhaulagiri, Nilgiri, and Annapurna Range on your flight to Jomsom from Pokhara.
Simrik Air, Yeti Airlines, and Summit Air are major airlines operating on this route. A one-way flight to Jomsom costs around US $125 for a foreigner and an Indian can get a one-way ticket at INR 5,500 per person.
If you want to reach Muktinath quickly or don’t want to compromise on your comfort, then choose a charted helicopter flight to Muktinath. Enjoy a thrilling helicopter ride and fly close to snowcapped mountains. Also, witness the diverse landscape of Nepal while flying from Kathmandu to Muktinath.
It takes around 45 minutes to 1 hour to reach Muktinath from Kathmandu on a charted helicopter. The cost of chartering a helicopter is US $3,000. Most helicopters can carry up to 5 passengers. It is possible to decrease the cost by joining a group, which will cost you around US $600 per person. Pokhara will be the refueling point on your journey.
Your journey will begin as early as 6 am. It is better to avoid a trip to Muktinath during the rainy season due to frequent delays and cancellation because of bad weather.
You can save some money by traveling from Kathmandu to Pokhara via domestic flight, bus, or private vehicle instead of taking a helicopter flight. If you want to know in detail then read our travel guide on getting from Kathmandu to Pokhara.
The journey from Kathmandu to Jomsom is very long. You will be driving on highways followed by a long stretch of bumpy off-road. It isn’t the most comfortable bus ride but dramatic change in landscape will mesmerize you.
Download some movies or shows for your entertainment. You can listen to your favorite music and watch the scenic views from your window. Carry some of your favorite snacks to eat during the bus journey.
It is the cheapest way to travel to Jomsom. A direct bus service operates from Kathmandu to Jomsom. One-way bus fare from Kathmandu to Jomsom costs around US $20. It takes approximately 15 to 16 hours to reach your destination. Buses to Jomsom depart at 2:30 pm daily from Gongabu Bus Park in Kathamndu. You will reach Jomsom the next morning.
Muktinath is around 25km away from Jomsom. You need to take an additional drive on a local bus or jeep ride to reach Muktinath from Jomsom. It will cost you around US $ 2 to US $3 on a local bus. The cost can reach up to US $ 45 if you reserve a jeep.
Public buses have a seating capacity of about 40 passengers. They don’t have in-built air conditioners. Also, there might be loud music and the narrow aisle will be filled with luggage. If you want to take a public bus, you will have to compromise in terms of comfort stops and restaurants.
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Hiring a private jeep to travel from Kathmandu to Jomsom will be more comfortable than taking a public bus. You will be driving to Jomsom via Beni and will reach your destination the next morning. From Jimsom you take a scenic drive to Muktinath temple.
A jeep can carry 7 to 8 passengers. Scorpio and Bolero are generally used. The cost of hiring a jeep is around US $300 to US $400. You don’t need to drive as a driver comes along with the vehicle. Fuel expenses and the wage of a driver are inclusive of the cost.
You will be driving past Kalanki, Munglin, Pokhara, Beni, Tatopani, Ghasa, Kalopani, Marpha on your way to Jomsom. From Kathmandu to Beni, the highway is well-paved. It’s off-road from Beni to Jomsom. The road from Kagbeni to Muktinath has been recently pitched.
Make most of your travel in a private vehicle by visiting interesting places. Here are a few places that you can visit during your overland drive from Kathmandu to Jomsom and Muktinath.
Enjoy a scenic boat ride in the second largest lake of Nepal, Phewa Lake surrounded by verdant hills. Also, visit the island temple of Tal Barahi. The reflection of snowcapped mountains like Annapurna and Dhaulagiri on the lake will mesmerize you.
It is the oldest temple of Pokhara city and is dedicated to Hindu goddess Bhagwati. The temple complex features small temples of different Hindu god and goddess. It attracts both Hindu devotees and non-Hindus alike. The temple located on a small hill overlooks the stunning views of Himalayas.
Visit the holy temple of Manakamana dedicated to Hindu Goddess Bhagwati. The goddess is known to fulfill the wishes of the devotees. The 17th-century temple is situated on a hilltop and is accessible by a cable car. Take a scenic ride in a cable car and enjoy bird’s-eye view of the river and hills. The cable car to Manakamana covers a distance of 2.8 km in around 10 minutes. Savor the panoramic view from the temple. On a clear day, you can enjoy the astounding view of mountains including Manaslu and Annapurna Range.
The main attraction of Gorkha is the historic old Durbar of Shah dynasty situated on a hill. Prithivi Narayan Shah of Shah Dynasty conquered several small kingdoms and unified it into one single kingdom, which is present day Nepal. On a clear day, you can enjoy the panoramic views of astounding mountains.
It lies on your way from Kathmandu to Jomsom. Take a dip in the natural hot spring of Tatopani and relax. The minerals present in the spring water are known to reduce stress and promote sleep. It also relieves pain and fatigue. Moreover, it helps to heal skin problems and boost blood circulation in your body.
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Jomsom is a small town nestled in the lap of towering mountains like Dhaulagiri and Nilgiri. It lies within Annapurna Conservation Area and is the last stop of most Annapurna Circuit Trek. It is famous for its landscape resembling that of the alpine desert.
The revered temple of Muktinath lies 25 km away from Jomsom. Muktinath bears religious significance for both Hindus and Buddhists. Hindus consider Muktinath as a sacred place of salvation. Taking a bath under 108 water spouts and then dipping into two kundas is said to give you salvation after death. It is an important place for Buddhists as Guru Rimpoche or Padmasambhava, the founder of Tibetan Buddhism, is said to have meditated in Muktinath.
Marpha village is popular for its apples and local brandy made from apples. Marpha is one of the oldest settlements in the lower Mustang region. The Thakali community dominate the region. The meandering cobblestone alleyways add charm to the village.
Explore Kagbeni, an ancient village of Mustang, situated on the confluence of Kaligandaki and Jhong rivers. Visit a local monastery to get an insight into Tibetan culture and practices. You can go for fossil hunting as well which is locally known as ‘shaligram’.
It is a scared lake bordered by lush green vegetation including pine trees. The lake lies roughly 5.5 kilometers away from Jomsom. Colorful prayer flags surround the jade green Dhumba Lake. The mesmerizing lake lies on the base of Mount Nilgiri and the pristine water reflects the image of the area.
Mustang is famed for its delicious and juicy apples. Try varieties of apple products like fresh apple, dried apples, apple juice, and apple brandy.
Enjoy a wonderful trip to Jomsom and Muktinath and create everlasting memories to cherish for a lifetime.