Upper Dolpo Trek - 27 Days

(Upper Dolpo Trek) Dolpo is the largest district of Nepal covering 5.36% of the total landmass of the country. The district borders Tibet (China) on the north and northeast, Jumla and Mugu districts of Karnali on the west, Myagdi, Jajarkot and Rukum on the south, and Mustang on the east.

Upper Dolpo trek route is a very unique remote and unspoiled area near the Tibetan border of Nepal. We can find the best description about this region In his book The Snow Leopard, Peter Mathesons describes his journey through the beautiful land of Dolpo. Nepal’s first English subtitle movie and Oscar nominated Himalaya or Caravan was also shot in this region. Upper Dolpo is a region of mystical beauty. And its remoteness adds to the sense of adventure among its visitors. The customs and traditions seems here are quite similar to those of Tibet. It is one of the restricted trekking regions of Nepal. It’s required special permit. The group should at least have two people to get trekking permit for this trek. Individual trekker will not get a permit for this region from the trekking permit immigration. The Area of the park spreads 3,500 square kilometer of Land.We will take our first flight to Jhupal from Nepalgunj. The town of Jhupa is beautifully located over the Himalayan foothills, with views of Annapurna and Dhaulagiri peaks to its north. We walk through terraced fields to the Bheri River and its narrow gorge. We continue walking to Dunai which is the administrative headquarter of the Dolpo region we will meet our rest team crew for this trek.

A large portion of the district is protected by Shey Phoksundo National Park. The name is derived from the 12th century Shey Monastery and the deepest lake in Nepal, the Phoksundo Lake, both of which lie in the district. The park protects endangered animals like the snow leopard, musk deer and the Tibetan wolf. Shey Phoksundo is the largest and the only trans-Himalayan National Park in Nepal. It is the biggest area occupying district of Nepal.The district distances an altitudinal range of over 5,000 m (16,000 ft) from a little over 1,500 m (4,900 ft) at Tribeni in Kalika VDC to 7,381 m (24,216 ft) meters at the peak of Churen Himal. Kanjiroba (6,221 m (20,410 ft)), Mukot (6,638 m (21,778 ft)) and Putha Hiunchuli (7,246 m (23,773 ft)) are other renowned peaks.

 

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HIGHLIGHT
-Amazing and breath taking views of Shey Phoksundo Lake
– Great views of alpines, landscapes, Himalayas, culture and wild animals
-Experience the unique culture of Buddhism with rare view of nature and wilderness
– Explore the historical monasteries and history of this Lower Dolpo
– Get in touch with flora and fauna of this Shey Phoksundo National park

Day 1
Arrival in Kathmandu (1300m/4264ft)

Upon our arrival in Kathmandu, a representative from Mount Adventure Holidays will pick us up from the airport and take us to our hotel. In the afternoon, we may take a rest or visit Mount Adventure Holidays office.

Overnight in Kathmandu.

Included meals:Breakfast

Day 2
Kathmandu: sightseeing and trek preparation

Today after breakfast we start a guided tour to several of the most historical and spiritual attractions in Kathmandu. Some of these landmarks are considered World Heritage Sites including the historic Durbar Square, the sacred Hindu temple of Pashupatinath, the famous 'Monkey Temple' (Swayambhunath) and Buddhist shrine (Bouddhanath), which is one of the largest stupas in the world. At noon, there will be a pre-trip discussion where we can meet our trek leader and other team members. Himalayan Glacier will brief us regarding our trek as well as provide us with an opportunity to ask any questions we may have regarding our upcoming adventure.

Overnight in Kathmandu.

Included meals:Breakfast

Day 3
Fly from Kathmandu to Nepalgunj: 1 hour

After our short excursion in Kathmandu, we take an hour-long flight from Kathmandu to Nepalgunj, located in Western Nepal. Nepalgunj, a town near the Nepal-India border, is also the gateway to Simikot, Humla. The town itself is an interesting Terai town that showcases the diverse culture of Nepal. In Nepalgunj, we visit the local market, mini-zoo and nearby villages. Overnight in Nepalgunj. Included meals:Breakfast

Day 4
Fly from Nepalgunj to Jhuphal (Dolpo) and trek to Dunai (2,850m/9,348ft): 45 mins flight, 2-3 hours trek

We fly to Jhupal after breakfast. The town is beautifully located over the Himalayan foothills, with views of Annapurna and Dhaulagiri peaks to its north. Here, we meet our trekking staff and begin the adventure. We walk through terraced fields to the Bheri River and its narrow gorge. We continue walking to Dunai, which is the administrative headquarter of the Dolpo region. We explore the small town in the evening and camp there for the night. Included meals:Breakfast Lunch Dinner

Day 5
Dunai to Shyanta (2,520m): 5-6 hours

Today we start our trek to Syanta after having breakfast. We gradually walk upward with the flowing river that will take us to the Syanta. We stop at Kageni for the Lunch and after lunch we cross two big suspension/ wooden bridge before reaching the Syanta Camp. Overnight camping at Shyanta. Included meals: Breakfast Lunch Dinner

Day 6
Shyanta to Rechi (2940 m) : 5-6 hours

Today 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. Today we have to cross the couple of suspension bridge and wooden bridge and this trail we explore the local village of Magar and local people during our trek to Rechi. The main occupation of people of this region is agriculture mostly in animal husbandry. After couple of up and downs we will reach the Renchi. Overnight camping at Renchi. Included meals: Breakfast Lunch Dinner

Day 7
Rechi to Phoksundo Lake (3,611m/11,849 ft) 5-6 hours

We continue our journey along the valley floor to the confluence of the Phoksund. The trail passes through a cedar forest before reaching old Samduwa village where we see many monasteries, Amchi Hospital/Tibetan Hospital which serves local Himalayan herbs and medicines. 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. After gradually trekking upward for 2-3 hours we will reach our destination to Phoksundo Lake. Overnight camping at Phoksundo Lake. Included meals:Breakfast Lunch Dinner

Day 8
Acclimatization and rest 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 its 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 withber and turquoise. Overnight at Phoksundo Lake. Included meals: Breakfast Lunch Dinner

Day 9
Trek to Sallaghari: 5-6 hours

Our trail moves from the Phoksundo Lake to Sallaghari after having breakfast, we will have couple of ascend and descend today with way in the forest trail. We will stop in nearby lake for our lunch and continue or gradual walk in the forest of Pine and junipers which will take us to the Sallaghari. Overnight camping at Sallaghari. Included meals:Breakfast Lunch Dinner

Day 10
Sallaghari to Shay High Camp: (5,350 m) 6-7 hours

Today we start our trek after having breakfast; we will gradually trek upwards toward the trail filled with rigged forest and bare dry lands. We will take pack lunch for today as we will not see any tea shop or houses until Shay High camp. After having rough upward climb we will reach the Shay High Camp. Overnight camping at Shay High Camp. Included meals:Breakfast Lunch Dinner

Day 11
Shay High Camp via Kang-La passes (5,360m/17,581ft) to Shey Gompa (4,500m/14,760ft): 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. Included meals:Breakfast Lunch Dinner

Day 12
Acclimatization and rest at Shey Gompa

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 embedded 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. Overnight camping in Shey Gompa. Included meals:Breakfast Lunch Dinner

Day 13
Shey Gompa via shela Pass to Namgung 4360M: 6-7 hours

We begin the day by following a pleasant trail amidst juniper trees which descends into a grey, stony canyon. Then the path begins to zigzag over bare rocks and coarse eroded soil until it eventually brings us to the top of Saldang-la pass via shela 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. After descending couple of times we will reach the Namgung. Overnight camping in Namgung. Included meals:Breakfast Lunch Dinner

Day 14
Namgung to Saldang (3,620m/ 11,874ft): 5-6 hours

We leave the village and climb up a slope and begin a long walk along dusty barren mountains. 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. The village stretches for nearly two kilometers on an open slope and consists of five villages having about eighty well-built houses with nearly six hundred people. It is a prosperous village not only agriculturally but also for its strategic location on a trade route to Tibet. Overnight camping in Saldang. Included meals:Breakfast Lunch Dinner

Day 15
Saldang to Khoma gaun (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. Khoma gaun is a small beautiful village where we can find the Tibetan culture and lifestyle. We will gradually ascend upward with the route of river until we reach the Khoma gaun. Overnight Camping in Khoma gaun. Included meals: Breakfast Lunch Dinner

Day 16
Khoma gaun to Shimen Gaun (3850m): 4-5 hours

Today we will start our trek after having breakfast, we will have couple of ups and down with mixed trail. Shimen Gaun is big village where culture is influenced by Buddhism and the main occupation is agriculture and animal husbandry of Yak and Sheep with trade of Yarshagumba, import and export with Tibet. On the way we see the beautiful bare land and mountains along every trail and way until we reach Shimen gaun. Overnight camping at Shimen Gaun. Included meals: Breakfast Lunch Dinner

Day 17
Shimen Gaun to Tinje gaun (4,010m): 5-6 hours

Today we will start our trek after having breakfast; we will have straight flat gradual walk with ups and downs on the way to Tinje gaun. Tinje Gaun is the main land route for business Tibet, where they import and export business and goods. After couple of bare land trek we will reach our today's destination Tinje Gaun. Overnight camping at Tinje Gaun. Included meals:Breakfast Lunch Dinner

Day 18
Tinje Gaun acclimatization and rest day

Today is the day for the rest and acclimatization day, where we will explore the Tinje Village in the noon or evening. We will explore the Tolung Gumpa,Bolan Gumpa and Tolang gumpa located in this area. If we are lucky we may also see the annual or local trade festival and culture with Nepal and Tibet. Overnight camping at Tinje Gaun. Included meals:Breakfast Lunch Dinner

Day 19
Tinje gaun to Kauduma Khola (4,340m): 7-8 hours

Today we will meet the two junctions, one will lead us to Upper Mustang and one will lead us to lower, we will have gradual flat trek to Upper/lower Mustang way that will lead us to Kauduma Khola. The trail will lead us to Mula pass (5027m) after gradual climb. After several gradual downward trek we reach the Kauduma Khola. Overnight Camping at Kauduma Khola. Included meals:Breakfast Lunch Dinner

Day 20
Kauduma Khola to Chharka Bhot (4302 m): 7-8 hours

Today we will start our trek after having our breakfast; we will have couple of ups and down trail to reach the Chharka Bhot. Today we will follow the thasan khola gradually until we reach the chharka Bhot. Chharka Bhot is the place where we can see the beautiful grass land with yaks and sheep's. Overnight camping chharka bhot. Included meals:Breakfast Lunch Dinner

Day 21
Chharka Bhot to Nulung Sumde Kharka: 6-7 hours

Our trek start from the Chharka Bhot, we will have couple gradual ups and down trail with bare landscapes. Nulung Sumde Kharka is the grassy land where we can see the Yaks and sheeps grazing on the field with local people and habitat. After couple of gradual walk we will reach the Nulung sumde Kharka. Overnight stay in Nulung Sumde Kharka. Included meals:Breakfast Lunch Dinner

Day 22
Nulung Sumde Kharka Via Niwas la Pass ( 5120 m) and Jungben La Pass (5550 m) to Camp Ghaladanghuldung Khola Camp (4987 m): 6-7 hours

Today we will start our trek after having our breakfast, today is the hardest day of this trail. We will have gradual upward and downward trek until we will reach the Niwas La Pass where we can see the beautiful natural Himalayas views from the top. After ascending couple of time we will have to pass the Jungben la pass from where we can see the Annapurna ranges and Dhaulagiri ranges, Tibet plateaus as this is the most challenging day for this pass. After couple of ups and down we will reach the Ghaladanghuldung Khola Camp for overnight stay. Overnight camping at Ghaldanghuldung khola. Included meals:Breakfast Lunch Dinner

Day 23
Ghaldanghuldung Khola Camp to Santa (3777): 5-6 hours

Today we will start our trek after having breakfast, we will first descend downward and we will cross the suspension bridge. After crossing the bridge we will trek couple of upward and downward routes until we will reach the river and cross the river. After that we will gradual walk until we will reach the santa. Overnight camping in Santa. Included meals: Breakfast Lunch Dinner

Day 24
Santa to Kagbeni : 5-6 hours

Our trek starts with the gradual walk with mixed trail upward and downward. The routes are very rough and dry with juniper and grassy land along the trail. After rough route trek we will reach to Kagbeni of Mustang. Overnight stay at Kagbeni. Included meals: Breakfast Lunch Dinner

Day 25
Kagbeni to Jomsom: 2-3 hours

From Kagbeni we will trek toward the Muktinath one of the holiest Hindu place of Nepal where we will explore the area and take the blessing of Muktinath. After exploring the Muktinath we will trek toward the Jomsom for our overnight stay. Overnight stay at Jomsom. Included meals: Breakfast Lunch Dinner

Day 26
Fly from Jomsom to Pokhara

We take the earliest flight from Jomsom to Pokhara. After arriving in Pokhara, we will be transferred to our hotel and you can explore the areas of Pokhara in your own free time. Included meals: Breakfast

Day 27
Drive/flight to Kathmandu

Today we will drive/take flight to Kathmandu. Included meals: Breakfast

Day 28
Final departure

Our adventure in Nepal comes to an end today! A representative from Mount Adventure Holidays will take you to the airport approximately 3 hours before the scheduled flight. Included meals: Breakfast

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Trip Facts

  • Car and flight
  • 1-8
  • 5106 m
  • Nepal