Attractions in Muktinath.
Shiva Parvati Temple: You can visit Shiva and Parvati temple which is situated 100 meters from the Muktinath Temple. This is a pagoda-style temple dedicated to Lord Shiva and Devi Parvati.
Jwala Mata Temple: The temple also called Jwala Mai Temple, Salamebar Dolamebar Gompa. You can find an eternal flame that is continuously burning. You can see these flames deep inside the ground once you enter the temple.
Saligram Temple: This temple is close to Shiva and Parvati temple managed by Muktinath Temple trust and a Tamil religious group. This is a must-visit Temple if you are visiting Muktinath.
Narsingh Gompa: This Monastery (Gompa) was the oldest in this place but old Gompa is not available now. You can find a beautiful new Gompa which completed in 2018. This Gompa is also situated 100 meters from the Muktinath Temple. You can see a big statue of Guru Padmasambhava inside this Gompa.
Sangdo Gompa: This is a small Gompa near the entrance of Muktinath Temple. This Gompa is used for the residential purpose for Monks and priests belonging to Muktinath.
Mukti Kunda: There are two Mukti Kundas (ponds) situated in front of Muktinath Temple, called Laxmi and Saraswati. These Kundas collect water from the 108 water springs, so taking a bath in these ponds is equivalent to take a bath in each of the water springs.
108 Water Springs: These are the holy water springs of Muktikshetra, each water spring considered as one Divya Desam. So, you take a bath in every water spring get Mokshay/Salvation. These water springs are situated behind the main Temple.
Big Buddha Statue: The Buddha statue is the most popular attractions after the main Muktinath Temple. This is a humongous statue of Lord Buddha overlooking the Muktinath valley and Kaligandaki river. The statue is newly built and fully completed in 2018. This is a must-see place if you are visiting Muktinath, the statue is close to Jwala Mai Temple.
Views from Muktinath.
You can see magnificent views of nearby mountains and Tibetan style villages near Muktinath. Mustang is a cold desert so most of the mountains are treeless. You can see the spectacular view of Mount Nilgiri (7, 061 meters / 23, 166 feet) and Mount Dhaulagiri (8,167 meters /26,795 feet). Dhaulagiri is the 7th biggest mountain in the world. Apart from these two big mountains, you can see a lot of snow-capped mountain ranges from Muktinath. There’s a big hanging bridge between Jomsom and Muktinath and provide a spectacular view of Kaligandaki River, this is a must-visit place for anyone who visits Muktinath. You can walk to the opposite side of the bridge and see the magnificent view of the region.
Best Seasons to Travel Muktinath.
You can travel to Muktinath from March to December. January and February are extremely cold and the roads are usually cold due to heavy snowfall. Mid-June to Mid-September is the rainy season due to which Jomsom flight cancellation is quite frequent so you can travel by road. March, April, May, till mid-June, and mid-September, October, November till mid-December is the best time to visit Muktinath Temple.
If you love snow and want to enjoy the winter, then you can consider visiting in the month of January and February when the entire zone is covered in snow.
Weather in Muktinath.
Weather in Muktinath is extremely cold in winter months, cold and pleasant in summer and rainy seasons. Temperatures during December, January, February and March months vary between 0 degrees to minus 20 degrees Celsius.
Temperatures during April, May, June months vary between 15 degrees Celsius to -1 degree Celsius. Temperatures during July, August and September months vary between 20 degree Celsius to 0 degree Celsius.
Permits needed to Travel Muktinath.
You require two permits to visit Muktinath Temple.
1: ACAP – Annapurna Conservation Area Project Permit. Muktinath zone is part of the Annapurna Conversion area so you must need an ACAP permit before visiting. You can get this permit from tourism offices in Kathmandu and Pokhara.
2. TIMS – Trekker’s Information Management System. As Muktinath comes in a trekking zone so you must need a TIMS permit before visiting. You can get a TIMS permit from TAAN offices in Kathmandu and Pokhara.
You will have to pay a penalty double the amount of the permit if you are found visiting Muktinath without permits. There are several checkpoints in the area where you need to show your permits before and after. So, carry proper permits to avoid any type of fine.
How to reach Muktinath Temple:
You can reach Muktinath by road, by flight and by helicopter based on your budget and time.
You can reach Muktinath Temple by road from Pokhara which is 200 Kilometres. The road journey to Muktinath is very beautiful and thrilling as the road goes through the high Himalayas alongside Kaligandaki River. You see many waterfalls, snow-capped mountains, beautiful mountain villages, Temples, Monasteries, Apple farms and a glimpse of local culture when you travel till Muktinath by road. The road journey to Muktinath takes 10 hours from Pokhara. Usually, people stay at Jomsom and the next morning visit Muktinath which is 25 Kilometres from Jomsom town.
You can reach Muktinath by flight from Pokhara. Small mountain flights operate daily basis to Jomsom from Pokhara which takes 20 minutes to reach Jomsom. Pokhara Jomsom flight is one of the most beautiful flight travels in the entire world especially when the tiny plane flies between to gigantic mountains Nilgiri and Dhaulagiri. After your arrival in Jomsom, you need to travel to Muktinath by road which is 25 kilometers.
You can travel to Muktinath by helicopter from Pokhara or Kathmandu. This is the fastest way to reach Muktinath Temple. Helicopter generally lands close to the Temple and gives you the waiting time of 1 hour. But the helicopter journey to Muktinath is very expensive as you need to hire a complete chopper which will cost you a minimum of 2000 USD.
Muktinath Temple is situated on an altitude of 3,800 meters and the market situated on an altitude of 3,750 meters. So acute mountain sickness (AMS) can be a problem if you arrive directly at Muktinath and spend overnight here. We generally suggest staying at Jomsom which is 2800 meters of altitude for the night and do a day visit to Muktinath. Many people have headaches, body pain, and vomiting during the night when they directly arrive at Muktinath and sleep. If you want to stay in Muktinath then you must stay a night in Jomsom before staying in Muktinath to acclimatize properly.
AMS symptoms may include headaches, vomiting, tiredness, trouble sleeping, and dizziness. If you have similar symptoms, then you must return to a lower altitude.