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Lost Cave Temples Of The Himalaya

In a remote corner of the Himalaya, in the forbidden Kingdom of Mustang, mysterious caves, perched high on cliff faces and carved by humans thousands of years ago, have lain just beyond reach — until recently. In April of 2007, a team of climbers and scientists climbed inside the long-hidden chambers for the first time in modern history.

Climber Renan Ozturk, rappeling out of a cave in Upper Mustang, Nepal.

Climber Renan Ozturk, rappeling out of a cave in Upper Mustang, Nepal.

Credit: Kris Erickson ©2009 National Geographic

A cave complex in Upper Mustang, Nepal.

A cave complex in Upper Mustang, Nepal.

Credit: Pete Athans ©2009 National Geographic Television

Paintings inside a cave in Upper Mustang, Nepal.

Paintings inside a cave in Upper Mustang, Nepal.

Credit: Renan Ozturk ©2009 National Geographic Television

Painting of mahasiddhas — tantric practitioners — inside a cave in Upper Mustang, Nepal.

Painting of mahasiddhas — tantric practitioners — inside a cave in Upper Mustang, Nepal.

Credit: Luigi Fieni ©2009 National Geographic Television

Village of Tsele, Upper Mustang, Nepal.

Village of Tsele, Upper Mustang, Nepal.

Credit: Pete Athans ©2009 National Geographic Television

Chortens – Buddhist monuments – in Upper Mustang, Nepal.

Chortens – Buddhist monuments – in Upper Mustang, Nepal.

Credit: Renan Ozturk ©2009 National Geographic Television

Chortens – Buddhist monuments – in Upper Mustang, Nepal.

Chortens – Buddhist monuments – in Upper Mustang, Nepal.

Credit: Renan Ozturk ©2009 National Geographic Television

Horse caravan transports expedition loads in Upper Mustang.

Horse caravan transports expedition loads in Upper Mustang.

Credit: Kris Erickson ©2009 National Geographic

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