- The face of Dolpo
- Dunia Village
- Monastery in Dolpa
- Chorten in Upper Dolpo
- Camping Site
- Enjoying the Beautiful Scenery view
Upper Dolpo Trek (Camping)
- Duration : 27 Days
- Primary activity : Trekking and Hiking
- Secondary activity: Nature and Culture
- Group size : Min. 2 pax
- Max-Altitude : 4,900m/16,072ft
- Country: Nepal
- Transportation: Private Vehicle and Domestic Flight
- Trip starts from: Kathmandu
- Ends in: Kathmandu
- Meals: Nepali and Continental
- Type: Tent Camp
- Accomodation: Hotel and Tent Camp
- Trip Route: Kathmandu-Nepalgunj-Juphal-Dunai-Ankhe-Sulighat-Phoksundo Lake-Phoksundo Khola-Phoksundo Bhanjyang-Shey Gompa-Namduna Gaun-Saldang-Yangze Gompa- Sibu- Jeng-la Phedi-Tokyu Gaun-Dho Tarap-Tarap Khola-Khanigaon-Tarakot-Dunai-Jhuphal-Nepalgunj to Kathmandu
Upper Dolpo Trekking is one of the most challenging adventures experienced at rural areas of western Nepal. Dolpo region was lately opened to outsiders. Still Upper Dolpo Trekking is off the beaten path and welcomes fewer visitors compared to other popular trekking regions. Upper Dolpo is a largest district of Nepal on the basis of land that comprises geographical structure quite similar to Tibetan highlands. Visit to deepest lake of world, Shey Phoksundo, get insight to authentic lifestyle of local inhabitants, encounter rare floras and faunas along strenuous ascend and descend makes this Upper Dolpo Trekking one hell of an amazing experience.
We begin our Upper Dolpo Trek as we take domestic flight to Nepalgunj followed by another flight to Juphal. It is the starting point of trek from where we start our trekking activity towards astounding villages, settlements, lakes, waterfalls, ridges, mountains, yak pastures etc. all the to way Phoksundo Lake, Shey Gompa, and numerous other settlements. In adventurous passion we get back to Juphal, Nepalgunj and fly back to Kathmandu after long more than twenty days of trekking. During our Upper Dolpo Trek, we will be entering the region that seems like it is separated from rest of the world. Along the magical views of Himalayas major highlights of Upper Dolpo Trekking lies in its exploring and learning opportunity of local living and lifestyle. It takes you into the wild. Passing through couple of main high passes namely Shey La at 5000 m and Jeng La at 5110 m; it really tests your fitness level. It is fully tented camp trekking except on major cities, which would be heavenly experience for adventure lovers. Also while embarking for Upper Dolpo Trekking, special permit is required this is arranged by us and included in the total trip cost. Regarding the best seasons, the months from May to November are regarded as ideal time to join in.
Upper Dolpo Trek is long and challenging off the beaten path adventure around remote areas of Nepal. Therefore it requires high level of physical fitness along trekking experience around Himalayan surroundings. If you are passionate towards experiencing what it is like to trek into the wild then join our Upper Dolpo Trekking for incredible adventure.
Day 01: Arrival day in Kathmandu
Day 02: Kathmandu valley sightseeing & trek preparation
Day 03: Fly from Kathmandu to Nepalgunj ( 150m/ 490 ft): 1 hour flight
Day 04: Fly from Nepalgunj to Juphal (2,320m/7,610ft) & trek to Dunai (2,850m/9,348ft): 2-3 hrs
Day 05: Dunai to Ankhe (2,896m/9,499ft): 5-6 hrs
Day 06: Ankhe to Sulighat (3,500m/11,480ft): 5-6 hrs
Day 07: Sulighat to Phoksundo Lake (3,350m/10,988ft): 4-5 hrs
Day 08: Rest Day at Phoksundo Lake
Day 09: Phoksundo Lake to Phoksundo Khola :4-5 hrs
Day 10: Phoksundo Khola to Phoksundo Bhanjyang : 6-7 hrs
Day 11: Phoksundo Bhanjyang to Shey Gompa (4,500m/14,760ft) via Kang-La pass (5,360m/17,581ft): 5-6 hrs
Day 12: Rest day at Shey Gompa the crystal monastery
Day 13: Shey Gompa to Namduna Gaun (4,800m/15,744ft) via Saldang La (5,200m/17,056ft): 6-7 hrs
Day 14: Namduna Gaun to Saldang (3,620m/ 11,874ft): 4-5 hours
Day 15: Saldang to Yangze Gompa (4,960m/16,267ft): 4-5 hrs
Day 16: Yangze Gompa to Sibu(4,560m/14,957ft): 6-7 hrs
Day 17: Sibu to Jeng-la Phedi (4,900m/16,072ft): 5-6 hrs
Day 18: Jeng-la Phedi to Tokyu Gaun (4,200m/13,776ft) via Jeng la (5,090m/16,695ft): 5-6 hrs
Day 19: Tokyu Gaun to Dho Tarap (4,040m/13,251ft): 4-5 hrs
Day 20: Rest Day at Dho Tarap
Day 21: Dho Tarap to Tarap Khola ( Kamakharka) (3,800m/12,464ft): 6-7 hrs
Day 22: Tarap Khola to Khanigaon (3,150m/10,332ft): 4-5 hrs
Day 23: Khanigaon to Tarakot (2,537m/8,321ft): 4-5 hrs
Day 24: Tarakot to Dunai(2,850m/9,348ft): 5-6 hrs
Day 25: Dunai to Jhuphal (2,320m/7,610ft): 2-3 hrs
Day 26: Fly from Jhuphal to Nepalgunj to Kathmandu
Day 27: Farewell Day
Day 01: Arrival day in Kathmandu:
Upon your arrival at Tribhuwan International Airport (TIA) in Kathmandu, you will be welcomed by a representative of Nepal Mountain Trekkers after you complete the formalities at customs of the airport. You will then be taken to the hotel and our representatives will provide brief overview about the travel itinerary and overnight stay at the hotel.
Day 02: Kathmandu valley sightseeing & trek preparation:
Upon your arrival at the Kathmandu, you will be preparing for the trek while enjoying sightseeing around Kathmandu Valley. Several monuments, UNESCO enlisted sites including the Basantapur Durbar Square, Pashupatinath Temple, and other temples and Stupas are the places you will visit on the second day and overnight stay at a hotel.
Day 03: Fly from Kathmandu to Nepalgunj (1500m/ 4900ft): 1 hour flight:
On your third day you will be take a flight to Nepalgunj from Kathmandu. Nepalgunj is a vibrant city located in the Mid-Western Region of Nepal. Nepalgunj is nearby the border Indian states of Rupediya and also Baharaich. The rest of the day you will sightsee around the local bazaar using horse cart which might come as a wonderful moment for the foreigners. Bageshowri Temple in Nepalgunj is quite popular and a visit to the Hindu temple in the evening will be a good thing to do the evening and overnight stay at a hotel.
Day 04: Fly from Nepalgunj to Juphal (2,320m/7,610ft) & trek to Dunai (2,850m/9,348ft): 2-3 hrs:
A 35-minute flight from Nepalgunj Airport takes you to Juphal on the fourth day. The flight is awesome as the aircraft flies over the mountain ridges, the beautiful valleys and the majestic-looking mountains. Jhupal Airport is a small airstrip amidst the mountains and the hills. You will also get a first-hand experience of the geographical diversity of Nepal as in an hour or so you will reach a small village amidst the mountains from a hot city of Terai. From Jhupal, you will walk for a few hours until you reach Dunai, the headquarters of Dolpa district and overnight stay at a guesthouse.
Day 05: Dunai to Ankhe (2,896m/9,499ft): 5-6 hours :
We leave Dunai to cross a suspension bridge and turn to the west following a trail past a hospital. The trail ascends up the side of the treeless, Thulo Bheri valley before entering Phoksundo river valley. During the walk we get to the view of Kagmara Peak up the valley. We pass through walnut groves, Dhera and Rahagaun villages, walk down dense jungles and finally reach Ankhe and overnight in Ankhe.
Day 06: Ankhe to Sulighat (3,500m/11,480ft): 5-6 hrs:
Our trail ascends and descends along a wooded riverbank and climbs on a steep trail. The ups and downs can be a bit monotonous, but there are several streams along the way that offer a chance to cool off. The trail eventually leaves the forests and passes through a grassy slope high above the river. We trek downhill on a trail surrounded by lush forests before reaching a cliff followed by a dizzying drop on a wobbly stone staircase to the river bank. We continue trekking until we reach Sulighat where we spend the night.
Day 07: Sulighat to Phoksundo Lake (3,350m/10,988ft): 4-5 hrs:
We continue our journey along the valley floor to the confluence of the Phoksundo and Pungmo rivers. After crossing a bridge, we walk on the western bank of the Pungmo Khola. The trail passes through a cedar forest before reaching Palam village. From here we trek up to a ridge and enjoy distant views of Phoksundo Lake and a spectacular waterfall, one of the highest in Nepal. Next, our trail descends through birch forests to the upper reaches of the Phoksundo Khola, and then to the picturesque Ringmo village with its mud-plastered chortens and Mani walls. From here it is a short walk to the shores of the Phoksundo Lake and overnight stay at Phoksundo Lake.
Day 08: Rest Day at Phoksundo Lake:
Today will be a well deserved rest day for acclimatization at Phoksundo Lake. During the day we can embark on a short hike to the village of Ringmo and it’s Tibetan Buddhist Monastery. During our short walks, we also get a chance to get acquainted with the local culture. The Dolpo people wear homespun clothing that is sometimes dyed a maroon color and they favor Tibetan-style somba or dhocha (boots with upturned toes) for foot wear. Both men and women often wear religious amulets and strings of coral, amber and turquoise and overnight at Phoksundo Lake.
Day 09: Phoksundo Lake to Phoksundo Khola: 4-5 hrs:
Our trail moves around the top western end of the Phoksundo Lake as it contours on a rocky ledge along the lake’s western bank. This unsteady trail suspended on a gangway of wood supported on pegs driven into crevasse in the rocks, signals the remoteness of the area we are about to enter. At the westernmost edge of the lake the path leads through a lush meadow that opens up into the flood plain of the Phoksundo Khola. Then we walk through the valley, crossing the river and avoiding the occasional boggy marsh underfoot and then coming on the bank of the river to the overnight camp.
Day 10: Phoksundo Khola to Phoksundo Bhanjyang: 6-7 hours :
For an hour or so we walk on a trail that leads us along the level path through a glacial valley which heads due north. At the convergence of the Phoksundo Khola and another mountain stream, there is an old wooden bridge. From here, we walk towards the north-east. A long climb brings us to a sheep meadow where our trail veers up a steep ravine. A hard climb to the top brings us to yet another valley where we can see the Kang-La pass. During our trek today we also get to admire the views of Chhamlang peak 6 (6739m) and peak 7 (6105m).
Day 11: Phoksundo Bhanjyang to Shey Gompa (4,500m/14,760ft) via Kang-La Pass (5,360m/17,581ft): 5-6 hours :
In the morning, we ascend on a steep trail littered with slate towards the pass. The climb to the top of the pass is quite strenuous. From the top of Kang-la pass we get excellent views of the large valley dissected by a gushing river. We descend to the valley floor on a steep trail. Next, we walk on a meandering trail along the banks of a river, crossing and re-crossing it several times. There are mud caves lining the hills overlooking the river. We also pass through meadows where we see grazing yaks, hundreds of sheep and domestic mountain goat (Chyangra). After crossing a quaint log bridge we reach the Shey Gompa compound where we will be spending the night.
Day 12: Rest day at Shey Gompa the crystal monastery:
Shey Gompa was built in 1655 and the monastery is noted for its giant copper with gilded gold statue of a seated Shakyamuni Buddha. To the east of the Gompa is Crystal Mountain which is one of the strangest mountains, as its contorted cliffs are laced with quartz and rooted with a rich variety of marine fossils. Today is another well-earned rest day for acclimatization. We spend the day hiking around Shey village which is famous for its ancient pre-Buddhist culture, the Bon Po. In Dolpo the ancient Tibetan way of life combines animism with the teaching of Buddha and overnight in Shey Gompa.
Day 13: Shey Gompa to Namduna Gaun (4,800m/15,744ft) via Saldang La (5,200m/17,056ft): 6-7 hours :
Today, you start by following a pleasant track amidst juniper, which ascends to a grey, stony canyon. This begins to zigzag over bare rocks and coarse eroded soil until it eventually brings you to a flat spot, suitable for a brew or lunch, if the weather is fine. Then we continue very steeply up for 20 minutes before traversing to the top of the Saldang La pass. The subsequent descent towards the north is long and tiring but grazing yaks and sheep, and nomadic tents made from yak hair is a comforting sight. In Namduna Gaun we visit Namgung monastery. The red stone monastery is built against the backdrop of a cliff on the north wall of a gorge and overnight in Namuda Gaun.
Day 14: Namduna Gaun to Saldang (3,620m/ 11,874ft): 4-5 hours :
Leaving Namduna we start climbing. Further on it begins a long thrilling traverse along some dusty barren mountains. Looking down into the valley bottom it is very evident that the people have made best use of the fertile valley as one sees the neat terraced fields showing bright patches of green and ripening crops. You ascend before going down steep slopes to the picturesque village of Salding, situated on a plateau high above the Nam Khong nala and the biggest village of the inner Dolpo area. After 3-4 hours of hard climb, we begin to see Saldang Village below us on a plateau high above the Namga Khola stream. It has a picturesque appearance. Saldang is the largest village of the inner Dolpo area and overnight in Saldang.
Day 15: Saldang to Yangze Gompa (4,960m/16,267ft): 4-5 hours :
From Saldang, we walk further north along the Nagon Khola (river) on a wild and barren terrain. We begin our walk on a fairly gradual path with few ups and downs. On the way, we pass through Marang and Ki villages. Next, we cross a tributary of Panzang River and walk towards the east and cross the river again before reaching Yangze Gompa which houses an old Bon-Po Monastery and overnight in Yangze Gompa.
Day 16: Yangze Gompa to Sibu (4,560m/14,957ft): 6-7 hours:
From Yangze, there are two trails that connect to Sibu. To save time we will retrace the path back towards Saldang village, which will be much easier and shorter than the other route. From Saldang we walk along a river and pass through terraced fields, stupas, chortens, heaps of Mani stones and a Chaiba monastery, then pass through the Namdo village, which is also prosperous, with about sixty houses having nearly 400 inhabitants. It stretches for more than 5 km on the high slopes to the left of Nam Khong Khola. The Namdo monastery is located near the river bed. Our journey continues further down the river for another two hours to camp near a small settlement of Sibu.
Day 17: Sibu to Jeng-la Phedi (4,900m/16,072ft): 5-6 hours :
We walk along the Nam Khong Khola for a while and pass by caravans with yaks that are moving towards the Tibetan border. After turning east and walking for a while, we arrive at a confluence of two small streams. Next, the steep trail ascends to a grazing area below the Jeng La pass (4,900m/16,072ft). Our camp will be set up in this beautiful meadow and overnight in Jeng la Phedi.
Day 18: Day 18: Jeng-la Phedi to Tokyu Gaon (4209m/13809ft) via Jeng La pass (5,090m/16,695ft): 5-6 hours :
We get up early in the morning and set forth on today’s trek. It will take us two long hours to reach the top of the Jeng La pass from where we get remarkable views of the north face of the Dhaulagiri massif. From here we descend on a rough trail to the Tarap Valley, a fascinating valley with vast plains in high mountains that extends twenty kilometers along Tarap Chu River. We camp close to the monastery at Tokyu.
Day 19: Tokyu to Dho Tarap (4,040m/13,251ft): 4-5 hours :
We trek downhill on a plain valley with patches of lush grass on both sides of the river which is completely different from other parts of inner Dolpo. There is also a marsh which is a common feature in the Desert Mountains of Tibet and the Ladakh Himalaya. Both the Bon Po and Buddhist sects are practiced in the valley. After a short trek, we reach Dho Tarap and overnight in Dho Tarap.
Day 20: Rest Day at Dho Tarap :
We spend today resting and strolling in the village of Dho Tarap which is surrounded by an irregular stone wall. Our walks will help us get acquainted with the local culture of the area. At Dho, about 40 houses are divided into three clusters and built in a haphazard way inhabited by few Tibetans and mostly Magars who are a hill tribe of Nepal. While here, we can visit a Buddhist Gompa which is closest to our campsite or we could embark upon a 40-minute walk and visit a Bon Po Gompa and overnight in Dho Tarap.
Day 21: Dho Tarap to Tarap Khola (Kamakharka) (3,800m/12,464ft): 6-7 hours :
From Tarap we descend towards a wide valley which eventually narrows into a gorge. We walk along juniper and wild rose bushes just above the tree line. On our trek we see herds of blue sheep and by the afternoon, we reach the confluence of the Tarap Chu and the Lang Khola, a stream that joins with Tarap River from further east. We will make our camp on a nice meadow also known as Kamakharka and spend the night.
Day 22: Tarap Khola to Khanigaon (3,150m/10,332ft): 4-5 hours :
We continue walking down the gorge of the Tarap River, at times alongside it. During our walk we pass by the local people who will be taking their herds to lower pastures for the winter. This will be one of the most exciting days of this trip as the valley becomes so narrow in a deep gorge that in some places we can jump from one side to another. Sometimes there is no trace of a path and we may have to walk across stone slabs fitted on logs in between the walls which act as a bridge. The gorge also provides unexpected adventure and thrills. At some places, the bridges are either damaged or washed away and we may be forced to cross the icy torrent on foot. Finally, we reach our camping spot beside the Tarap Khola at Khanigaon where we spend the night.
Day 23: Khanigaon to Tarakot (2,537m/8,321ft): 4-5 hours :
From the camp we follow a trail that takes us to the village of Lalberi. Our trail then passes through a lush forest, descends into another gorge and continues to follow the river again. After reaching Tarakot, we can visit Sandul Gompa which lies about 8 km east of the village at a juncture of Barbung Khola and Tarap Chu. The monastery stands on a hill to the south of Bheri River. Today we camp by the Tarap Chu River and overnight in Tarakot.
Day 24: Tarakot to Dunai (2,140m/7,019ft): 5-6 hours :
We begin our trek on a trail behind the Bheri River before crossing a bridge near the Lawan village. Our trail will continue alongside the big Bheri River ascending until the Byas Gadi. From here the trail moves towards the west on a relatively easy trail. We cross the river again near the Lochakhola Gaon and ascend to Dunai for an overnight stay. Today’s trek will mostly be on a wonderful gorge with pine tree and overnight in Dunai.
Day 25: Dunai to Jhuphal: 2-3 hours :
From Dunai, we trek along the Bheri River enjoying the beautiful landscape. On the way, we pass through Dhupichaur and Rupgad villages as well as a temple. We continue trekking via Kalagaonda village and Motipur village before reaching the small airstrip and overnight in Jhuphal.
Day 26: Fly from Jhuphal to Nepalgunj and then to Kathmandu:
We take the earliest flight from Jhupal to Nepalgunj. Upon reaching Nepalgunj, we return to Kathmandu on the next available flight. After arriving in Kathmandu, we will be transferred to our hotel and overnight in Kathmandu.
Day 27: Farewell Day:
Your Upper Dolpo Trek comes to an end today. In this trek full of diverse natural beauty, adventure and architectural excellence, we hope that you created some wonderful memories. Today our representative from Nepal Mountain Trekkers will escort you to the airport and we bid you farewell. We hope you enjoyed your visit here in Nepal with us.
- Airport Pick up and drop
- 4 nights Hotel in Kathmandu(Hotel Horizon Kathmandu)
- All accommodation and meals during the trek (Full Board)
- Domestic flights
- All camping equipment(Dinning Tent,Kitchen Tent, Toilet Tent, Two men Dom Tent, Chairs, Toilet Pan, Tables)
- An experienced and professional English-speaking trekking guide, assistant trekking guide (4 trekkers: 1 assistant guide) and Sherpa porters to carry luggage (2 trekkers:1 porter) including their salary, insurance, equipment, flight, food and lodging
- Four seasonal sleeping bag, down jacket, Nepal Mountain Trekkers duffer bag, t-shirt, and trekking map (Note: down jacket and sleeping bag are to be returned after trip completion)
- TIMS Card and Shey Phoksundo National Parks entrance fees.
- A comprehensive medical kit
- 13% VAT and 10% service charges
- Farewell Dinner
- Nepal Entry Visa fee (Visa Information)
- International airfare and excess baggage charge
- Extra night accommodation in Kathmandu because of early arrival, late departure, early return from mountain (due to any reason) than the scheduled itinerary
- Lunch and evening meals in Kathmandu (and also in the case of early return from mountain than the scheduled itinerary)
- Personal expenses (phone calls, laundry, bar bills, battery recharge, extra porters, bottle or boiled water, shower etc)
- Tips for guides and porters
Complimentary items offered by Nepal Mountain Trekkers
- Nepal Mountain Trekker t-Shirt and duffel bag with comprehensive trekking map
- Spa treatment for mind and body in Kathmandu after completion of trek
- Farewell treat