Muktinath temple is one of the most scared and visited Hindu sites in the world. Being a place of salvation, this temple enjoys millions of footfall of devotees coming from all over the world, especially South Asia, every year. This temple holds a special place in both Hinduism and Buddhism. It is believed that visiting this temple and offering a prayer to the deity can set your free from all your sins and open the way for ultimate salvation. The temple is situated in the Mustang district of the country and is accessible via the Annapurna circuit trek.
Seeing the surging number of travelers, Nepal has maintained stringent yet simple travel rules for every traveler. These rules are there to help every traveler enjoy a hassle-free traveling experience while the government maintains law and order without making much effort.
If you want that your Nepal and Muktinath temple visit comes out a memorable trip, following these rules is essential. Wonder what these rules are and what documents you need to carry? Then here is our help in this regard for you.
Cultural rules to follow
- As Muktinath Temple is a sacred site, there are many unsaid yet important cultural rules that you must follow inside the temple.
- You should never enter the temple with shoes on. Other leather items like purse, belt, and jacket must be removed before entering the temple.
- Don’t consume any drugs or alcohol inside the temple or before visiting the temple.
- Don’t litter the temple complex.
- Cows are considered sacred here. So whether you’re inside or outside the temple, don’t ever hurt a cow.
Documents related rules to follow.
Though you don’t require any document to produce as you visit the Muktinath temple, you require a whole list of documents to enter in Nepal (if you’re foreign nationals) and Annapurna Circuit trek. Depending upon the purpose, your documents list will vary. Here, we are giving you a detailed guide of documents needed for different purposes as you visit Nepal and witness the grandeur of almighty at Muktinath temple.
Documents to enter in Nepal (If you’re a foreign national).
A valid passport and travel visa are required by all the nationals, except Indians, visiting Nepal. If you’re an Indian, you can visit Nepal with any of voter-id/Pan card/ Aadhar Card document if you’re coming from the border.
Proof of yellow fever vaccination if you’re traveling from a country where it is present.
Required permits / Documents to obtained these
To reach Muktinath Temple, you have to trek through the Annapurna Conservation Area. Annapurna Conservation Area is a protected site and can’t be accessed just like that. You need to obtain two special permits to pass through this area. These permits are:
- Annapurna Conservation Area Project Permit or ACAP– To collect this permit, you need to contact the Nepal Tourism Board located at Bhrikuti Mandap, Kathmandu, or Pokhara.
- Trekkers Information Management System Permit or TIMS -The second permit that you need to get is the Trekkers Information Management System Permit or TIMS. This is the basic trekking permit that every trek must obtain without fail whether you trek in the Annapurna region or any other Nepal region.
To collect this permit, you need to visit TAAN located at various locations like Saathumti, Thamel and Mali Gaun. As you must be trekking to Muktinath with the help of a travel company, this can be done on their behalf as well. However, your presence is required while obtaining the permit is essential.
The cost of this permit varies from nationals to nationals. For example, if you’re SAARC nationals then you have to spend NPR 1500, about $16 per person for ACAP permit. However, all other nationals need to spend NPR 3000, about $32 per person to obtain this permit. For locals, the cost is only NPR 100 per person.
Similarly, TIMS cards can be obtained at the cost of NPR 1,000 per person for foreign nationals, NPR 600 per person for SAARC national. For Nepal citizen, TIMS is not required.
You must realize that all the prices exclude 13% VAT (Value Added Tax). Everyone who is above 10 years of age must obtain this permit.
To obtain these permits, here are the documents that need to be presented:
- Dually filled permit form for both the permits. You can either pre-download the forms or fill them upon reaching Nepal or you can obtain them after reaching here. We suggest you go with the first option.
- Two copies of your recent passport & visa.
- 4 passport-size photos.
- A copy of your Annapurna circuit trek itinerary.
The complete process to get the permits will be done by your travel agent, you no need to worry about it.
Health-related rules that you must follow before Muktinath temple
Situated at an elevation of 3,800 meters, reaching Muktinath Yatra is not everyone’s cup of tea. You must have pink health and great stamina to conquer the rocky path, altitude sickness, stiff legs, and many other health-related hurdles that you may have during your Muktinath visit.
Here are some health-related rules that you must follow before visiting Muktinath temple:
- Always get your basic vitals checked before thinking of visiting Nepal and pay a visit to the Muktinath temple. The conditions here are far different from where you reside. Weather can be very erratic and cruel sometimes. Hence, your body should be strong enough to cope-up with that. Get a basic check-up done and take your doctor’s advice over this.
- Get health insurance. Though Nepal has developed a lot, there are still some areas that are remote and have no basic medical facilities. As you may pass through such areas during the Annapurna circuit trek, you should be preparing for any medical emergency. In that case, health insurance can back you to deal with any unwanted and unnecessary medical emergency.
- Update your preventive inoculations at least six weeks before visiting Nepal. Some of the key vaccinations that you should consider taking are meningitis, tetanus, hepatitis B, and typhoid.
- Always carry a medical kit handy during the visit. Your kit should include basic headache and fever medicine, ibuprofen for general aches and pains, Immodium or Pepto Bismol capsules for upset stomach and diarrhea, antihistamine, brunt cream, water purification tablets, water-proof band-aid, and anti-infection ointments.
The last rule of the day is that you should always hire a trusted and certified travel company for your Muktinath yatra. We hope that we will follow all these rules and enjoy hassle-free Muktinath yatra. Happy journey!