Upper Dolpo

Trip Highlights

Upper Dolpo area is one of the beaten tracks lies at the far west part of Nepal. It is one of the unique paths for trekking and views are still virgin. In this area, you can see the pretty nature with medicinal land, culture, and traditions of the people, many monasteries of Buddhists and civilized human society at an elevation.

Trekking at the Dolpo area is a dream for every trekker and it is one of the memorable trips in everyone’s life. While trekking you will get the opportunity to see the different species of wildflowers and different types of animals like Snow Leopards, Blue Sheep and the giant bird called Himalayan Griffon. The main occupation of the people is trading. They are concerned with salt trade from native country Tibet.  However, this is their tradition and it is going on with one generation to another generation.

Dolpo region is conserved by a national park called Shey-Phoksundo which is situated to the northern side of the Dhaulagiri series adjoining to the Tibetan Plateau. In this National park, you will get the chance to see the different species of plants eco-system and animals such as Himalayan Blue Sheep and indefinable Snow Leopard are well managed and conserved. Similarly, from this point you can see the peak like Mt. Dhaulagiri and Mt. Kanjiroba and also can see the crystal clear view of the Phoksundo Lake. These mountains and lake, as well as the Phoksundo Gompa, make your trip lifetime unforgettable. Phoksundo Gompa is devoted to Bonpo religion. The natural beauty of the Dolpo and its lifestyle and culture of the people can be seen in the famous Oscar-nominated film called “Caravan”. Dolpo is very famous for its beaten track and the hospitality of the people. And still, it is home for many animals like Himalayan Blue Sheep, Wolves, Spotted Leopard and different species of plants.


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TOUR DETAILS
  • Duration 24 Days
  • Activities Trekking
  • Max-Altitude 4,480m
  • Activity Level Tough
  • Group Size Min. 2Pax
  • Tour Type Private tour
ACCOMODATION

Hotels, Tea Houses and Lodges

You will be warmly welcomed at the airport by our office representative and then you will transfer to hotel. Our staff will give a brief explanation of the program. This day you can stay within the hotel or enjoy a night at Thamel, Kingsway especially famous for clubs and bars.

This day, you will visit much cultural heritage, which includes some of the famous world’s heritages like Pashupatinath, Swyambhunath, Kathmandu Durbar Square, Boudhanath stupa and many more. You can do shopping various Nepalese cultural stuff on this day.

Generally, we go via Nepalgunj to get to Dolpo so, firstly we will fly to Nepalgunj and spent food time in Nepalgunj. Nepalgunj is situated in south western part of Nepal a steaming hot city. It is a plain land hesitated by different people from different parts of the country and which in culture and heritage. It includes Bageshowri temple, Nepal’s one of the important Hindu temples.

We will reach Juphal just in 35-minute flight from Nepalgunj with beautiful views of the snowcapped mountain. Juphal is a small mountain village, where we can breathe cold and fresh air than that of Nepalgunj. We will stay here because we have to arrange porters and other remaining equipment.

From Juphal, we have to descend through wheat and vegetable field to reach Thuli Bheri River. A big suspension bridge will lead us to the entrance of Shey Phoksando National Park (SPNP), Nepal?s largest National Park with the area of 3,555km/sq. It is comprising the Trans Himalayan easy stem and the Tibetan type of floras and faunas. You have to pay 1000NPR, except tourists from SAARC countries. We will follow Suli Khola viewing a part of the Dhaulagiri Range. We have tea while we pass through the village as can stay there. We can enjoy the tea with honey, pure and fresh honey. Then we will trek through the trail surrounded by pine tree line spruce, fir, Juniper and Cyprus and bamboo forest. Really a beautiful time to get close with nature. At the end of the day, we will reach Cheep Ka, a small village surrounded by millet and wheat field. Overnight at a tented camp, inclusive of full board meal.

To reach to Palma, we have to pass through the beautiful forest, following a river. We have to ascend sometimes and descend sometimes. On the way, we can see the local people with their mules as dzopas (cross bread of Yak and Cow). Loaded with thongs to sell. After 4 hrs we will reach Reechi village, leaving behind Reechi we will reach Chumuwar after 2 hrs. There is an Amchi Hospital, an Amchi is a doctor who is educated in traditional Tibetan medicine. You can have treatment from herbs and numerals. Interested person can donate for this Hospital. Overnight at a tented camp, inclusive of full board meal.

It takes about 4 hrs to reach Phoksundo Lake. We have to climb steep about 2hrs. before reaching the top, we can have the new of Nepal’s highest waterfall, a spectacular waterfall of 107m high knows Phoksundo waterfall as known as sunlight waterfall. Then we will descend from the top to get Ringmo village a small charming village. People residing here practice Bonpo religion, religion related to Buddhism but it is older than Buddhism. The religion was founded by Buddha Lonpa Shanrab Miwo, 18000 years ago. It is believed that Dolpa used to be the center of Bon Kindom called Zhang. It a big and powerful kingdom in present western and northwestern Tibet. It is believed that in the century Zhang was defeated by the Buddhist kingdom of Tibet and Bonpo disappeared completely, but still some people practice it. Overnight at tented camp, inclusive of full board meal.

Walking for many days, it is mostly that we should have rest at least for one day to admire the beauty of Phoksundo Lake and visited nearby villagers inhabited by Bon and Buddhist religion. Overnight at a tented camp, inclusive of full board meal.

This day, we will enter a restricted area of Upper Dolpo. We will follow the famous trail where the famous movie called CARAVAN of Eric Valli was cast. This trail is used by peoples of Dolpo and other trade with Tibetans. Ti is really adventurous to pass through the trail. When we reach the top we will have a beautiful view of Lane Ringmo, the dark green pine forests and snow-capped mountain to the South. We will have to descend first and ascend through a wide valley which will let us have a spectacular view of Kanjirowa Himal (66612m) then we will reach an alpine area with junipers called Thaneba or Lakeside camp, a beautiful place of camping. Overnight at a tented camp, inclusive of full board meal.

This day we will have Salla Ghari, trekking through between high rock walls on both sides and crossing a couple of streams. We will enter an arrow gorge where will set our camp. We can continue trek but there is the possibility of altitude sickness problem. Overnight at a tented camp, inclusive of full board meal.

We will start trek by a long and strenuous climb of about 2 and a half hrs over a dusty path to Kang La (5350m), also called as Ngadra La. We have to descend through pass covered with snow which is very steeply and after about 3 hrs we will reach Shey Gompa, a very small village with a couple of houses and the Gompa. It is an 11th-century gompa, situated beneath the crystal peak on a small grassy plain, at the confluence of two rivers people believed that it was constructed by a Tibetan Buddhist, who arrived here on the back of flying snow lion. It is also called the spiritual heart of Dolpo. Every year many pilgrims visit his gompa to make Kora (clockwise circuit) of crystal peak. Overnight at a tented camp, inclusive of full board meal.

You can explore around Tsakang Gompa which is at about 457m. It is not really a monastery but a retreat. Tsakang had been a meditation center of many famous lamas from Tibet. Shey Gompa belongs to the Chaiba community, followers of the Padmasambhava and Kagyu sects. It was the first Kagyupa monastery and its founder was the lama Ten-szin-Ra-Pa. The monastery was built during the 11th century. Shey is famous for its ancient Buddhist culture. In Dolpo the ancient Tibetan way of life combines animism with the teachings of Buddha. Drutup Yeshe introduced Buddhism in the Dolpo valley. Many years ago he came to Dolpo and came across a wild people whose supreme God was a ‘fierce mountain spirit’. Crystal mountain is to the west of Shey monastery. It is a very strange mountain indeed. Its contorted cliffs are laced with quartz and embedded with a rich variety of marine fossils. Shey Gompa stands above the confluence of Kangju Nala and Yeju Nala. Near the confluence, there is a group of prayer mills turned by water wheels. Overnight at a tented camp, inclusive of full board meal.

To get to Namgung, we have to cross the pass Sheyla which is also called Geln La is about 5000m. While we are through the Glen pass, we can see a beautiful view of the northern part of the Tibetan plateau, which is the highest plateau in the world. To the east, we can see Mustang. After through pass, we have to descend to the pastures of Namgung. Peoples of Namgung heartily welcome us. It is a beautiful place with a friendly environment. Overnight at tented camp inclusive all board of meals.

Our Trek to Saldang starts with climbing a tree slope. We have to ascend to 4700m before going down steep slopes to the picturesque village of Saldang, situated on a plateau high above the Nam Khong Nala and the biggest villages of lower Dolpo area. The village is prosperous, not only agriculturally but also for its strategic location on a trade route to Tibet. Overnight at tented Camp inclusive of full board meals.

We will leave Saldang village and on way to Sibu we have to pass through terraced fields, Stupas, Chortens mani and a Chaiba monastery. Namdo, the next village contains sixty houses having nearby four hundred in habitants. It streaches 5km on the high slopes to the left of Nam Khong Khola. We will set camp near the small settlement of Sibu, right on the river bank. Overnight at tented camp inclusive of full board meals.

We will follow the line of the river valley and the trail is easy going initially. But after two hours, we must make another stream before turning into side valley where the rise becomes very sharp. Overnight at tented camp with a full board of meals.

To reach Tokyo Gaon we have to cross the Jeng La which is about 4850m. It will take about 2 hrs to climb to reach the top of Jeng La. Form the top of the peak we can have good views of Dhaulagiri, beautiful goldy views in the morning then we will descend towards Tarap valley. By the after we will see green valley which leads us by a beautiful trail down. Towards Tarap Chu. Tarap is a spectacular valley with vast plants in high mountains extending to twenty kilometers along the Tarap Chu River. It consists of ten villages with cultivated fields, many Gompas, and Chhortens. Overnight at tented camp with the full board of meals.

To reach to Dho Tarap we will walk east along the downward lower of Tarap Chu. The trail is easy as it is well traveled. There are many mani walls, we can see but some of the Chhortens are in a bad situation. The French School is just outside the village of Dho Tarap. Dho is surrounded by an irregular stone wall and consist of thirty-four houses. Both Bonpo and Buddhist is inhabitant here. We will visit Buddhist Gompa where a Lama lives. He is very happy to show his monastery and might even let you see his private Gompa and the Thankas which he has made himself. Overnight at tented camp with the full board of meals.

The next two days are longish with a choice of several different campsites so the itinerary can be flexible. Your route follows the course of the Tarap Khola, generally downhill. You go through narrow gorges with the river rushing through. One 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. You will also see the first of the modern steel suspension bridges which have been built to facilitate movement of people and animals. The track is very narrow in places. Overnight at a tented camp, inclusive of full board meal.

You leave Khanigoan by the new suspension bridge and then walk alongside the river, sometimes going very high before reaching down to the water again. Some of the going are quite demanding and one bridge, said to have unusable for six years, necessitates crossing on wet stepping-stones. Coming into the broad fertile valley of the Barbung Chu, you walk amongst the various crops of millet, sweet corn, barley, buckwheat, green beans, chilies and marijuana. Your lunch and night stop is high above the river but there is a standpipe for water. Tarakot 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, which lies 8km east of Tarakot and at the junction of Barbung Khola and Tarap Chu, 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. As an alternative to camping at Tarakot, you may camp down by the river as there are good cooking facilities there and a clean, locked toilet for trekkers’ use. Overnight ata tented camp, inclusive of full board meal.

The trail is mostly down and fairly firm underfoot. Walking beside the Bheri River you use the ingenious path built twenty feet above the river. All too soon you have reached the village of Dunai and the campsite you used before. You will now have completed the circuit and can mark the occasion with a celebration party! Overnight at a tented camp, inclusive of full board meal.

You now retrace your steps to Juphal. Initially, the way is flat but the final hour up to your destination seems steeper than you remember on Day One! Camp overnight in the grounds of one of the lodges. Overnight at a tented camp, inclusive of full board meal.

WHAT’S INCLUDED

  • All the airport pick up/drop by private car/van or bus (Depends on group size).
  • All domestic airfare (Kathmandu-Nepalgunj-Juphal-Nepalgunj-Kathmandu) including airport tax.
  • All the necessary paperwork such as national park entry fees, special trekking permit and TIMS card fees.
  • Very high-quality north face or mountain hardware or same category camping equipment (Sleeping tent/Dining tent/Kitchen tent/Toilet tent/mattress and Kitchen utensils).
  • All the trekking crews will be insured as Nepal government regulation.
  • The company guarantees the rescue services in case of emergency; please hand over your insurance policy copy to us.
  • Full board meals (B.L.D.) during the trekking period with hot tea and coffee.
  • All the trekking crews (guide, sherpa, porter, helper, cook) salary/accommodation/food.
  • Rain protection duffel bag for client luggage and first aid medical kit bag.
  • 3-star category hotel in Kathmandu on B/B plan and Guesthouse in Nepalgunj.
  • Supported staffs and camping stuff will transfer by bus from/to Nepalgunj and by plane from/to Nepalgunj to Juphal.
  • One full day Kathmandu sightseeing in cultural UNESCO world heritage sites.
  • All the government taxes and company service charge.
WHAT'S EXCLUDED
  • Nepal visa which obtained at the airport on arrival (bring 4 copies passport size picture too).
  • International airfare – from and to Kathmandu.
  • Alcoholic beverages, bottled mineral water, soft drinks, and snack foods.
  • Any personal medical or evacuation expenses incur and strongly recommend international Travel insurance which included rescue.
  • Extra porter for the personal day bag pack.
  • Riding horse along the trek.
  • Extra cost on the natural disaster.
  • Restaurant food bills, if the client decides to go to another restaurant during the trek.
  • Extra night hotel Nepalgunj due to bad weather and earlier back to Kathmandu.
  • Helicopter charter and all accommodation on flight cancellation due to bad weather.
  • Tips to trekking crews.

FAQs

  • Adventurous camping trek to the remote trans Himalayan region of Nepal.
  • Superb view of Kanjirowa Himal, crystal Mountain and many more.
  • Visit ancient monasteries of Dolpo district.
  • Explore remote areas of the western region.
  • Observe Unique Tibetan Buddhist culture.
  • Discover the wild west of Nepal Himalaya.
  • Visit UNESCO world cultural heritage sites of Kathmandu Valley.
  • Crossing Kang La (5350m) and Jyagla pass.
  • Explore mesmerizing Phoksundo Lake (Deepest lake of Nepal).

Oct – Dec, Feb – Apr

All foreigners except Indian nationals must have a valid visa to enter into Nepal. Visa is available on arrival at Tribhuvan International Airport upon entry in Kathmandu, Nepal and at Nepal borders of India and Tibet. Visa can be easily extended at the central immigration office. www.immigration.gov.np; Visa application requires a passport with at least 6 months until expiration and one passport -size photo. The current cost of a visa for 30 days is US$40(to be paid in cash) for 30 days that is required to make in cash. Other currencies are also accepted although rates may differ.  Other nationalities should check entry requirements. visitors are requested to specify return flight tickets, time intended stay in Nepal. We recommended you schedule at least 1-2 day extra at the end of the trip just in case there is a delay. If no delay occurs we can arrange an additional activity for your time in Nepal. To help calculate the exact dates of these crossings we have found the website www.timeanddate.com to be very useful. The children under the age of 10 will get the free visa. Please be advised to check the current regulation. Visa regulation can change without prior notice. Citizens of China, as well as citizens of south Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) countries (Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Pakistan and Sri Lanka), get the free visa. countries not entitled to get a visa upon arrival are Nigeria, Ghana, Zimbabwe, Swaziland, Cameroon, Somalia, Liberia, Ethiopia, Iraq, Palestine, and Afghanistan If you are a citizen of one of these countries, please contact your local Nepalese embassy.

Nepali Rupees (NPR/Rs) is the local currency.
(1 USD = ~ Rs.100 NPR).
We can exchange most of the foreign currencies through local banks and legitimate money exchanges in Kathmandu and all over Thamel. Small amounts of cash can also be exchanged at the hotel.
The ongoing rate of exchange is visibly displayed. The government of Nepal has banned the import, export, and use of 500 and 1000 Indian Rupee note in Nepal. You should ensure that you are not carrying these notes on arrival in Nepal as they will be confiscated and you may also be fined.
Despite having security advantage of travelers’ cheque, we prefer cash exchange to avoid hassles like a lengthy process and high rate of commission at the banks. You can withdraw cash (in Rupees only) from one of the many ATMs in Kathmandu and Thamel itself. There are quite several ATMs that are open around the clock. The maximum withdrawal amount is 35,000 Rupees for a 500 Rupees processing fee if you are using your foreign card. If you use the money exchange facility at banks and financial institutions the service fee charge imposed is about four percent or more depending upon the bank.  Please note that most of the established banks in Asia will not accept foreign currency notes that are old, torn or faded. Please ensure that you have new, clean notes

Depending on the season you wish to go trekking you may have to make adjustments to clothing and types of equipment however these are the necessities list we prepared to keep your comfort and utility in mind.
We never recommend our clients to bring over pieces of equipment which are not necessary for the trek.
Head

  • Sun hat or scarf
  • Winter hat or insulating hat or Wide-brimmed hat
  • Headlight with extra batteries

Face

  • Sunscreen
  • Sunglass with UV protection
  • Face/body wipes

Hands

  • Lightweight gloves
  • Heavyweight winter gloves

Body

  • Hiking shirts
  • Long sleeved shirt made of synthetic fiber
  • Hooded rain jacket
  • Fleece jacket
  • Lightweight cotton pants
  • T-shirts ( bring Lightweight wool)
  • Polypropylene underwear
  • down jacket ( available in rent in Kathmandu)
  • Sweater
  • Waterproof jacket and pants

Footwear

  • Hiking Boots that been worn in
  • Thick wool socks (Take an extra pair of thick light socks)

Essential gear

  • Backpack or daypack (Size depends on whether you take porter or not).
  • Thermal bottle
  • Water purification
  • Trekking pole
  • Sleeping bag (-15 bag is best in the high altitude trek)
  • Toiletries (toilet papers,  toothpaste, toothbrush, )

Toiletries

  • Medium size drying towel
  • Toothbrush
  • Toothpaste
  • Deodorant/ floss
  • Biodegradable bar soap
  • Nail clippers
  • Small mirror

Personal accessories

  • Money
  • Watch
  • Cell phone
  • Camera
  • Extra items
  • First aid kit
  • Extra passport photos and photocopies of passport
  • Notebook and pen
  • Binocular

The most importantly, tipping is at travelers discretion and should be relied on good service that does not form the part of wages for your Guides, porters, and crew although they are very much appreciated. In Nepalese culture, a tip is an accepted and honored way to say thank you (Dhanyabada) for good service. Normally the tips are offered at the end of the trek and this is best done as a group. Most groups will give the trips in farewell dinner on the last evening or last day of the trek, to mark the end of the trip. The amount of the trip is entirely a personal preference that may be more or less depending upon your perception of service quality, length of trip, budget, and appreciation of their work. It is important to Discovery World Trekking crews who professionally take care of you all the time during the trekking, inspire excellent service and offer enriching journey- a trip of once in a lifetime experience. We ensure that all of our crews including guides and porters are paid well and treated fairly with respect.

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