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Upper Dolpo Trek

  • Overview
  • Itinerary
  • FAQ's
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Upper Dolpo is situated in Karnali zone at the border of Nepal and Tibet. Dolpo is also called "Ba Yul" or the Hidden Valley is a land of mystery, scenery, and peace. Dolpo is Known to be one of the ancient lands in which ancient human civilization was originated. Upper Dolpo trekking is protected by Shey-Phoksundo National Park. This Trekking routes passed many gigantic mountain ranges. During this trek here one can find a well-preserved eco-system of plants and wildlife, including the blue sheep and the exclusive snow leopard. The view of Kanjiroba peak, Phoksundo lake, and the Dhaulagiri massif is one of the most rewarding moments of this trek. This trekking region is another remote hidden destination in the far west where Nepal's most tranquil and natural beauty is still unexplored.

You may also like: In this trekking route, trekkers can visit the home of the Bhote and Sherpa people. Trekkers can see the difficult life style of local people. This trekking is rugged, unspoiled, and unforgettable arguably the best trek in all of Nepal.


  • Expolre the Shey Gompa and other monasteries.
  • Behold the beauty of Phoksundo Lake and Phoksundo waterfall.
  • Admire the spectacular views of Kanjirowa himal and Crystal Mountain.
  • Experience its untouched Tibetan Buddhism and Bonpo culture.
  • Explore the mystique hidden land of Inner Dolpa.
  • Scenic flight to and from Nepalgunj/Jhuphal.
  • Visit UNESCO world heritage sites in Kathmandu valley.

Outline Itinerary

  • Day 1 : Arrival in Kathmandu
  • Day 2 : Kathmandu valley sightseeing & trek preparation (1,300m).
  • Day 3 : Fly to Nepalgunj
  • Day 4 : Fly to Juphal (2,400m) and trek to Dunai (2,150m) 3-4 hours, O/N at tented camp with BLD basis.
  • Day 5 : Trek to Ankhe (2,660m) 5-6 hours
  • Day 6 : Trek to Renje (3,104m), 6-7 hours
  • Day 7 : Trek to Phoksundo lake (3,600m)
  • Day 8 : Trek to Phoksundo Khola (3,507m) 5-6 hours
  • Day 9 : Trek to Phoksundo Bhanjyang (4,402m)
  • Day 10 : Cross Kang La pass (5,151m) then trek to Shey Gompa (4,126 m)
  • Day 11 : Rest and exploration day at Shey Gompa
  • Day 12 : Cross the Saldang La pass (4,785m), and then trek to Namduna Gaon (4,400m)
  • Day 13 : Trek to Saldang (3,903m), 4-5 hours
  • Day 14 : Trek to Sibu (3,942m), 5-6 hours
  • Day 15 : Trek to foot of the Jeng La (4,369m)
  • Day 16 : Cros the Jeng La Pass (4,845m), trek to Tokyu Gaon (4,240 m)
  • Day 17 : Trek to Dho Tarap (4,090m)
  • Day 18 : Trek to Serkam (3,630m)
  • Day 19 : Trek to Khani Gaon (2,550m)
  • Day 20 : Trek to Tarakot (2,281m)
  • Day 21 : Trek to Dunai (2,052m)
  • Day 22 : Trek to juphal (2,404m)
  • Day 23 : Fly to Kathmandu via Nepalgunj.
  • Day 24 : Transfer to Tribuwan international airport.

Day 1 : Arrival in Kathmandu

Our airport representative will be receving you at Tribhuwan international airport and transfer to hotel in our respective hotel in our private tourist vehicle.After time to get refreshed, evening we'll meet and transfer for welcome dinner in one of the typical Nepalese restaurant in the heart of Kathmandu and briefing about your trip. 
  • Accomodation: Hotel
  • Meals: Breakfast

Day 2 : Kathmandu valley sightseeing & trek preparation (1,300m).

Today, After morning breakfast you'll visit different historical and cultural sites of the Kathmandu valley with our professional guide. You will go for the pilgrimage sites of Hindus temple Pashupatinath, the world biggest Boudhanath stupa and visit Swoyambhunath stupa also known as monkey temple. After exploring the surrounding areas visit historical Kathmandu Durbar square with the temple, unique architectures and kumari (living goddess). Evening pre-trip discussion and introduce with our fellow trekking staff for your adventure trip.
  • Accomodation: Hotel
  • Max. Altitude: 1300
  • Meals: Breakfast

Day 3 : Fly to Nepalgunj

Today, you'll leave the hotel and take a flight to Nepalgunj. The flight to Nepalgunj will give you good views of the Himalaya towards the North. Upon arrival, you will be transferred to your hotel. There will be a time in the evening to have a good look around the town, which is around 3 km from the Nepal-India border. 
  • Accomodation: Hotel
  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 4 : Fly to Juphal (2,400m) and trek to Dunai (2,150m) 3-4 hours, O/N at tented camp with BLD basis.

Today, from Nepalgunj we take a flight to Juphal, it is about 35 minutes flighte.Twinotter is the primary mode of transport from the airstrip of Nepalgunj to Juphal and Juphal to Nepalgunj. This service is fairly dependable. sometimes, flight may be cancelled due to weather conditions or other technical problems. 
  • Accomodation: Tented Camp
  • Hours: 3-4
  • Max. Altitude: 2400m
  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 5 : Trek to Ankhe (2,660m) 5-6 hours

Today, from the camp at Dunai, route diverts from the king Mahendra statue to cross the new suspension bridge and turning west, following the trail past the hospital. The path soon begins to climb up the side of the treeless Thulo Bheri valley, where it crests a ridge and then enters the Phoksundo river valley, finally reaching another ridge which is marked by cairns at 2,499 meters. This wonderful walk leads to a large side canyon, then descending gently on the long downhill slope through the scattered houses and walnut groves to a stream at 2,801 meters, the trail below the stream leads to Dhera, a winter settlement where people from higher villages keep herds of cows and goats, however, the route leads the upper trail climbing to Rahagaon, a Thakuri village at 2,900 meters, having a Gompa dedicated to the local god, Mastha, guardians of this village. Trek from here passes through the lower part of Rahagaon and then descending to the village water supply at the Phoksundo khola. Passing through another canyon, the path heads downhill through deep dark forests to a large stream, finally emerging at the entrance to the Shey Phoksundo National park at Ankhe (2,896 m).
  • Accomodation: Tented Camp
  • Hours: 5-6
  • Max. Altitude: 2660
  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 6 : Trek to Renje (3,104m), 6-7 hours

Today, The trail starts becoming very hectic but once you cross the river twice on well-made bridges, you then make a steep ascent on a very narrow path, hugging the cliff face. Having descended to the river again the trail takes another steep ascent requiring frequent stops to watch the panorama of the landscapes and also for rest you may camp on the side of Suligad river.
  • Accomodation: Tented Camp
  • Hours: 6-7
  • Max. Altitude: 3104m
  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 7 : Trek to Phoksundo lake (3,600m)

Our journey continues along the valley floor to the confluence of the Phoksundo and Pungmo Kolas. After crossing to the western side of the Phoksundo Khola on a wooden bridge the path follows to the west bank of the Pungno Khola which leads all the way to Phoksundo lake 3,500 m near Ringmo village. The path passes through a cedar forest and finally to Palam, a winter settlement used by the people of Ringmo village. From here our route heads up to open country, at an altitude of around 3,350 meters. From the ridge, one can see the distant views of Phoksundo lake and a spectacular 300 m high waterfall, one of the highest in Nepal. After a brief stop here with the great views, finally, the walk descent through birch forests to the upper reaches of the Phoksundo Khola, and then to the picturesque settlement of Ringmo with its mud plastered chortens and Mani walls. From here it is a short walk to the shores of Phoksundo lake for the overnight camp.
  • Accomodation: Tented Camp
  • Hours: 6-7
  • Max. Altitude: 3,600m
  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 8 : Trek to Phoksundo Khola (3,507m) 5-6 hours

Today, we follow the trail that skirts the edge of the lake itself. This precarious trail is suspended on a gangway of wood supported on pegs, driven into crevices in the rocks and signals the remoteness of the area you are about to enter. You go very steeply up to 4040 meters and then plunge down again to the valley bottom to enter the flood plain of the Phoksundo Khola and trek to your night stop alongside the river, within the confines of the forest to avoid the worst of the wind which is prevalent in the valley bottom.
  • Accomodation: Tented Camp
  • Hours: 5-6
  • Max. Altitude: 3,507m
  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 9 : Trek to Phoksundo Bhanjyang (4,402m)

Today, we should take sandals or footwear suitable for Knee deep as you are crossing a few streams. This morning you continue along the level path through a glacial valley that now heads north. As this becomes narrower and narrower there are impressive vertical cliffs and contorted rock formations. At the confluence of the Phoksundo Khola and another, un-named mountain stream there is an old wooden bridge. Here you take the barely discernible path to the north east up a side valley which has a cavernous look. There is no trail as such, so it is necessary to clamber over rocks and boulders and to ford a stream that rushes down the steep valley. A long climb brings you to a sheep meadow where the trail veers up a steep ravine. A hard climb to the top brings you to yet another valley where you can see the Kang La, the pass will lead you to Shey Gompa. You camp just before the pass in a place that Peter Matthiessen christened "Snowfields camp". 
  • Accomodation: Tented Camp
  • Hours: 5-6
  • Max. Altitude: 4,402m
  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 10 : Cross Kang La pass (5,151m) then trek to Shey Gompa (4,126 m)

Today, morning walk leads up to a steep climb littered with slate towards the pass. The climb is quite strenuous, especially on the slate screed. From the top of Kang-la pass 5,360 m, there are excellent views down upon a large valley which is bisected by a gushing river. On descending steeply to the valley floor, then the path leads a long meandering trek along the banks of the river, crossing and re-crossing it several times. There are mud caves lining the hills overlooking the river and we pass through meadows where hairy yaks, hundreds of sheep and domestic mountain goat (Chengra) can be found grazing as well near the odd nomadic hut of the herders. A red chorten heralds our arrival at Shey gompa 4,500 m, where a quaint wooden, log bridge leads up to our destination at Shey Gompa compound for our overnight camp.
  • Accomodation: Tented Camp
  • Hours: 6-7
  • Max. Altitude: 5,151m
  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 11 : Rest and exploration day at Shey Gompa

Today, we hike around Shey meaning crystal, this monastery is also known as the crystal mountain. The lama of shey resides at a red hermitage known as Tsakang Gompa which is north of Shey. It is rather a retreat than a monastery. Tsakang had been a meditation centre of many famous lamas from Tibet. Shey Gompa belong to the Chaiba community, followers of great saint Padmasambhava, known as Guru Ringpoche and Kagyu sects. It was the first Kagyupa monastery and its founder was the lama Tenzing Ra-Pa, built during 11th century. Shey 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.
  • Accomodation: Tented Camp
  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 12 : Cross the Saldang La pass (4,785m), and then trek to Namduna Gaon (4,400m)

Today, our day begins by following a pleasant trail amidst juniper which descends into a grey, stone canyon. The path begins to zig zag over bare rocks and coarse eroded soil until it eventually brings us to the top of Saldang-la 5,200 m. The subsequent descent towards the north which is long and tiring but we finally come upon the welcome sight of pastures fo grazing yaks and sheep, and nomadic tents made from yak hair. This signals our approach to Namduna Gaun 4,800 meters. Like shey, the Namgung monastery is of the Karma-Pa sect. The monastery, a red stone structure, is built against the backdrop of a cliff on the north wall of a gorge. 
  • Accomodation: Tented Camp
  • Hours: 7
  • Max. Altitude: 4,785m
  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 13 : Trek to Saldang (3,903m), 4-5 hours

Today, leaving Namgung monastery and 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.  Though the village lies at about the same altitude as Ringmo it is totally different then Ringmo, a himalayan village is situated below the tree line while saldang belongs to the arid zone of the Trans-Himalayan Tibetan plateau. The village stretches for nearly two kilometers on an open slope. saldang consists of five villages having about eighty well built houses with nearly six hundred people. Saldang is a prosperous village not only agriculturally but also for its strategic location on a trade route to tibet. After the chinese invasion of Tibet in 1959, trade with Tibet was virtually stopped.
  • Accomodation: Tented Camp
  • Hours: 4-5
  • Max. Altitude: 3,903m
  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 14 : Trek to Sibu (3,942m), 5-6 hours

Today, from Yangze there are two trails taht connect Sibu (4,560 m), the long way trail heads due west passing through  the very remote villages of Nishalgaon and further past Shimengaon. To save time and energy. we will retrace the path back towards Saldang village which will be much easier and shorter than the other north western route. From Saldang the trail following the river bed we pass through terraced fields, stupas,chortens,heaps of mani stones and a Chaiba monastery, then passing 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 the small setlement of Sibu.
  • Accomodation: Tented Camp
  • Hours: 5-6
  • Max. Altitude: 3,942m
  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 15 : Trek to foot of the Jeng La (4,369m)

Today, following the line of the river valley the trail is fairly easy going intially. After about two hours it is necessary to wade another stream before turning into a side valley and the rise becomes very sharp. This is a pleasant meadow, but bestrewn with rocks, yak and other animal droppings.
  • Accomodation: Tented Camp
  • Hours: 5-6
  • Max. Altitude: 4,369m
  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 16 : Cros the Jeng La Pass (4,845m), trek to Tokyu Gaon (4,240 m)

Today, The trail follows the Nam Khong  Khola for a while on the morning walk coming across a caravan of Laden yaks that are on their way towards tibet border. After days of following the same river, finally, we part turning east till we arrive at the confluence of two small tributaries, from here our walk leads to a steep climb to the bottom of Jeng La (4,900 m), where we stay for the overnight on a nice meadow.
  • Accomodation: Tented Camp
  • Hours: 6-7
  • Max. Altitude: 4,845m
  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 17 : Trek to Dho Tarap (4,090m)

Today, Our route leads eastward along the downhill course of Tarap Chu in a plain valley with patches of lush verdant grass on both sides of the river which is completely different from other parts of inner Dolpo. There is a marsh which is a common feature in the Desert mountains of tibet and the Ladakh Himalaya. In this valley both Bon Po and Chaiba sects reside together in harmony. After a short trek on this beautiful valley we come to Dho Tarap (4,040 m) for the overnight camp with ample time to visit around the villages. This village is surrounded by an irregular stone wall.
  • Accomodation: Tented Camp
  • Hours: 4-5
  • Max. Altitude: 4,090m
  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 18 : Trek to Serkam (3,630m)

Today, Our route follows the course of the Tarap Khola, generally downhill. We go through narrow gorges with the river rushing through. You may see blue sheep, marmots, yaks, sheep, and goats and perhaps meet people from Dolpo taking their flocks of sheep and goats to lower pastures for the winter. The afternoon brings more undulations in the path when it leaves the immediate course of the river. There is evidence of improvements to the trail where parts of the rock have been blasted out.
  • Accomodation: Tented Camp
  • Hours: 6-7
  • Max. Altitude: 3,630m
  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 19 : Trek to Khani Gaon (2,550m)

Today, Again we continues down the gorge of the Tarap river, at times alongside it, rising high above on a built from the steep slopes might come across people from Dolpo taking their herds to lower pastures for the winter. There are many possible campsites by the river. This will be one of the exciting days of this trip walk, 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 any path and we 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, reaching to the camping spot beside the Tarap Khola at Khanigaon (3,150 m).
  • Accomodation: Tented Camp
  • Hours: 6-7
  • Max. Altitude: 2,550m
  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 20 : Trek to Tarakot (2,281m)

From this camp our path follows an indistinct trail to the village of Lalberi. Then passing through an area of impressive forest, before descending into another gorge our walk continue following the river again downstream to reach Tarakot where colorful terraced fields greet us. Tarakot (2,537 m) is an old fortress town known by the local people as Dzong, meaning 'fort'. Before the Gorkha dynasty Tarakot was the capital and had a dzong. The famous sandul Gompa lies about 8 km east of Tarakot and at the junction of Barbung Khola and Tarap Chu. It stands on a knoll to the south of Bheri river and at one time supervised collections of tolls for the trading caravans traversing an area called Tichu Rong. It is possible to camp by the river about 150 meters below Tarakot, near the police post or we climb a steep hill for over an hour to the small village on a spur on the other side of a valley opposite Tarakot. There are chortens and a gompa here on the edge of a grassy Plateau, with an interesting solitary tree.
  • Accomodation: Tented Camp
  • Hours: 4-5
  • Max. Altitude: 2,281m
  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 21 : Trek to Dunai (2,052m)

Today, The walk continues beside the Bheri river in a tremendous gorge with pine trees and an ingenious path built about seven meters above the river. On reaching Dunai (2,140m) after completing the circuit with time for celebration, particularly as bottled beers is available in Dunai or else try the local brew.
  • Accomodation: Tented Camp
  • Hours: 4-5
  • Max. Altitude: 2,052m
  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 22 : Trek to juphal (2,404m)

Today, we retrace the journey back to Jhupal, which is a short distance walk along the Bheri river to the small airstrip fot the last overnight camp of this great memorable adventure.
  • Accomodation: Tented Camp
  • Hours: 2-3
  • Max. Altitude: 2,404m
  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 23 : Fly to Kathmandu via Nepalgunj.

Today, Early in the morining flight to Nepalgunj from Juphal. This is a wonderful 35 minute flight over the Himalayan foothills, with fine views of the main peaks including Annapurna and Dhaulagiri to the north.Then we connect with the flight back to Kathmandu.On arrival Kathamndu transfer to hotel.
  • Accomodation: Hotel
  • Meals: Breakfast

Day 24 : Transfer to Tribuwan international airport.

Today, our company representative will drop you to the Kathmandu airport for your final departure for your home country or onward  destination.
The above information is a guide and standard template of what we provide. The trek can be customized as your request to accommodate your specific requirements. Customize My Trip
Upper Dolpo trek is suitable for any kind of person who is moderately fit, no previous experience is required. To  condition yourself for the trek, some physical fitness programs such as walking, running, swimming and hiking are recommended before you embark on your journey. Any person suffering from a pre-existing medical condition or diseases must seek medical advice before considering any trek.
Yes, our company representative will be there to greet you. He will be displaying Himalayan  Excursion Nepal sign board outside the airpot terminal. You will be transferred to your hotel by our private vehicle.
Best season for trekking is usally March-April and October-November but
Upper Dolpo trek can be done in February,June,April,May and December as well.
Weather in the mountains is very difficult to predict.At night it is generally cold and the days are generally warm.The temperature could be as high as 20 degree celsius to -15 degree celsius low.
During trek guesthouse does not facilitate with heater or air conditioner,But they have facility of hitting the dinning area by providing kerosene or metal heater. USD 2 to USD 5 per person would be applicable to use this service and this is payable directly to the guesthouse. 
Depending on nature of travel we provide different vehicle service.we provide tourist vehicles for sightseeing, city tours and airport pickups-drops. We book flight ticket through Tara Air and Nepal Airlines air for the flight from Kathmandu-Nepalgunj-Jhupal and vice versa.
There are landline telephone in some village along the trekking routes from which you can contact with your family and friends. some place there is also internet access which you can use by paying some charges.Also you can buy sim card for your cell phone by giving your xerox copy of your passport and PP size photo.
In the cities, off course yes but once you are outside of the cities, all you have to pay in cash. Also you have exchange the currency in Nepali rupees before you go outside the cities.
Generally, in kathmandu and Nepalgunj you can allocate USD 15-20 for lunch and dinner.During trekking USD 10 to 15 per person a day will be enough to buy bottles of water,chocolates,biscuits,pay for the hot shower and a few drinks.
Yes, charging facilities will be available in every guesthouse & lodges but sometime there maybe load shedding problem so its better to bring power bank or spare batteries.
There are many restaurant available in Kathmandu and Nepalgunj city where you can find any delight of your choice. But in trekking route most teahouses.On the menu you may find noodles soup,steam mo:mo,daal bhat, green salad, finger chips,eggs,potatoes, fresh vegetables. You can get tea,coffee,hot lemon,hot chocolate. Every day breakfast, lunch , dinner will be at a lodge.
Along your trek we can add days at your request with additional costs to cover guides,porters,accomodation and food.Please consult with your guide and he will update our office in Kathmandu and we can make the arrangments accordingly.
If you are in private or solo trip it would be possible as your itinerary is very flexible where as if you were in group then this group the option would be limited so please make sure you discuss with your group and guide and your guide will update us accordingly.
Lodges mostly serve the vegetarian meals so there is no problem at all for vegetarian. Also we always recommend our clients to eat vegetarian meals to avoid food poisoning. Non-veg meals at the high altitude is not safe for the stomach.
Hot water in bucket will be provided for shower and you have to pay for hot water.
Yes, they have received training from NATHM (Nepal Academy of Tourism and Hotel Management).They have also received high altitude first aid training from KEEP (Kathmandu Environmental Education Project).
Actually tipping is not compulsory, but small gesture of thanks to your guides and local porters.The level of the tip should reflect the level of satisfaction from and personal involvment with your guide.
Yes, there are a plenty of options and choices to extend your holiday before or after your main trip.Click here
24 days
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Trip Info

Trip Code: HEN/TAH-01
Grade: Moderate grading info
Best Month of the Year : Mar - May & Sept - Nov
No. of Person : 2 - 10 Persons
Hotel Accommodation : Guesthouse & Tented Camp
Maximum Elevation : 4,845M.
Average hours of walking per day : 5-6 hours
Destination: : Nepal

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Himalayan Excursion Nepal Pvt. Ltd.
Amrit marg, Thamel,
Kathamandu, Nepal

+977 9818816545 
+977 9851162502 WhatsApp


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