Upper Dolpo Trek, far-western Upper Dolpo region takes you into one of the most remote areas of the Himalaya near the Tibetan border. It was opened for trekkers only in the late eighties in Nepal. Until then the area was closed for foreigners. 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 Trek
These chortens greet you when entering the gompa area.

Upper Dolpo is a region of mystical beauty. And its remoteness adds to the sense of adventure among its visitors. The customs and traditions seem here are quite similar to those of Tibet. It is one of the restricted trekking regions of Nepal. It’s required a special permit. The special permit charged USD 500 for the first ten days. And the additional US $ 50 each day after previous 10 days. The group should at least have two people to get trekking permit for this trek. A single person will not get trekking permit in this region from the trekking permit immigration.

Upper Dolpo Trek, Nepal
Exploring around Ringmo on a day trip.

Upper Dolpo Trek can be challenging as the tourism infrastructure is almost non-existent, and organized tours are essential. But the rewards are worth it—Tibetan Buddhist culture, some of the oldest monasteries in the country, the spectacular Lake Phoksundo, rare wildlife, and a real sense of being in the wilderness.

Best remote trek in Nepal, Dolpo Trek
Dundargaon village, Dolpo

But the deep valleys, high passes and peaks, the turquoise Lake Phoksundo, the 800-year-old Shey Monastery and some rare wildlife—including the elusive snow leopard—reward intrepid trekkers who visit here.

The Trek begins with a flight from Kathmandu to Nepalgunj about 45 minutes and the next morning ends at Jhupal. This trek is best to do in the summer and monsoon season. Winter seasons is avoided for this trek because of the heavy snowfall.

Dolpo Trek information -Community Trek
Trekking between Shey Gompa and Namgung.

Highlights of Upper Dolpo Trek

1. Trek through parts of Nepal that few visitors ever see
2. Keep an eye out for snow leopards in the Shey Phoksundo National Park, one of the highest animal concentration parks in the world
3. Gaze over the turquoise waters of Lake Phoksundo
4. Visit Shey Gompa, an 800-year-old monastery at the base of Crystal Mountain, immortalized in Peter Matthiessen’s “The Snow Leopard”
5. Witness the spring hunt for Yarsagumba, bizarre caterpillar fungus highly sought after for its medicinal qualities

Itinerary Overview

DAY 01: Arrival in Kathmandu (1335 Meters)
DAY 02: Sightseeing and Preparation for Trekking
DAY 03: Fly to Nepalgunj (150 Meters )
DAY 04: Fly to Juphal (2475 Meters )
DAY 05: Trek to Chepka (2838 Meters )
DAY 06: Trek to Palam (3820 Meters )
DAY 07: Trek to Phoksundo Lake (3620 Meters )
DAY 08: Phoksundo lake exploration (3620 Meters )
DAY 09: Trek to Salla Ghari (3640 Meters )
DAY 10: Trek to Lar Tsa (4120 Meters )
DAY 11: Trek to Shey Gompa (4320 Meters )
DAY 12: Rest Day – Shey Gompa (4320 Meters )
DAY 13: Trek to Namgung (4430 Meters)
DAY 14: Trek to Saldang (4046 Meters )
Day 15: Trek to Sibu (4000 Meters )
Day 16: Trek to Jengla (4480 Meters )
DAY 17: Trek to Tokyo Gaon (4240 Meters )
DAY 18: Trek to Dho Tarap (4200 Meters )
Day 19: Trek to Serkam (3623 Meters )
DAY 20: Trek to Tarakot (2280 Meters )
DAY 21: Trek to Dunai (2109 Meters )
DAY 22: Trek to Jhuphal (2409 Meters )
DAY 23: Flight Nepalgang – Kathmandu (1335 Meters )
DAY 24: Departure day

Cost for 24 Days Upper Dolpo Trek:

Per Person 2-4px 5-8px 9-12px 12-15px
In US $ 5200 5000 4800 4500

Cost Includes:

1: All the airport pick up / drop by private car/van or bus (Depends on group size)
2: All domestic airfare (Kathmandu-Nepalgunj-Juphal-Nepalgunj-Kathmandu) including airport tax.
3: All the necessary paperwork such as national park entry fees, special trekking permit and TIMS card fees.
4: 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 )
5: All the trekking crews will be insured as Nepal government regulation.
6: Company guarantees the rescue services in case of an emergency; please hand over your insurance policy copy to us.
7: All the three hygienic meals with hot tea and coffee provided by our expert cook and served by kitchen helper during the trek.
8: All the trekking crews (guide, sherpa, porter, helper, cook) salary/accommodation/ food.
10: Rain protection duffel bag for client luggage and first aid medical kit bag.
11: 3-star category hotel in Kathmandu on B/B plan and Guesthouse in Nepalgunj.
12: Supported staffs and camping stuff will transfer by bus from/to Nepalgunj and by plane from/to Nepalgunj to Juphal.
13: One full day Kathmandu sightseeing in cultural UNESCO world heritage sites
14: Sleeping bag, Community Trek printed T-shirt for trekking.
15: All the government taxes and company service charge

Cost Excludes:

1: Nepal visa which obtained at the airport on arrival {bring 4 copies passport size picture too}
2: International airfare – from and to Kathmandu.
3: Alcoholic beverages, bottled mineral water, soft drinks and snack foods
4: Any personal medical or evacuation expenses incur and strongly recommend international Travel insurance which included rescue
5: Extra porter for the personal day bag pack
7: Riding horse along the trek
8: Extra cost on natural disaster
9: Restaurant food bills, if the client decide to go another restaurant during the trek
10: Extra night hotel Nepalgunj due to bad weather and earlier back to Kathmandu
11: Helicopter charter and all accommodation on flight cancellation due to bad weather
12: Tips to staffs

► Book Your Trip Now

♂ Note: All itineraries can be customized at your request.
♂ For more details, you can email to communitytreks@gmail.com or talk and share a message on WhatsApp on 977 9808881190


Full Itinerary

  • DAY 01

    Arrival in Kathmandu

    Welcome to the Himalayan country of Nepal! Upon your arrival at the Tribhuvan International Airport one of Community Trek representatives will be there to welcome you before taking you to your hotel in Kathmandu.

    (1335 Meters) (Hotel)
  • DAY 02

    Kathmandu half day sightseeing and preparation for Trekking

    Sightseeing around Kathmandu Valley (Monkey Temple) with your guide then your Trekking guide briefs you regarding our trek as well as provides us opportunity to ask any questions we may have regarding our upcoming adventure.

    (Breakfast) (1335 m) (Hotel)
  • DAY 03

    Fly to Nepalgunj

    Generally we go via Nepalgunj to get to Dolpo so, firstly we will fly to Nepalgunj and spend 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 heritages. It includes Bageshowri temple, Nepal’s one of the important Hindu temples.

    (Breakfast) (150 Meters ) (Hotel)
  • DAY 04

    Fly to Juphal

    We will reach Juphal just in 35 minute flight from Nepalgunj with beautiful views of 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 equipments.

    (Breakfast) (2475 Meters ) (Hotel)
  • DAY 05

    Trek to Chepka

    From Juphal we have to descend through wheat and vegetables 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 ecasy 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.

    (BLD) (2838 Meters ) (6 hours) (Camp)
  • DAY 06

    Trek to Palam

    To reach to Palma we have to pass through 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 a 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.

    (BLD) (3820 Meters ) (6 - 7 hours) (Camp)
  • DAY 07

    Trek to Phoksundo Lake

    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 believe that Dolpa used to be the centre of Bon Kindom called Zhang. It a big and powerful kingdom in present western and north western 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.

    (BLD) (3620 Meters ) (4 hours) (Camp)
  • DAY 08

    Phoksundo lake exploration

    II is most 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.

    (BLD) (3620 Meters ) (Camp)
  • DAY 09

    Trek to Salla Ghari

    This day, we will enter restricted area of Upper Dolpo. We will follow the famous trail where the famous movie called CARAVAN of Eric Valli was casted. 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 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 to have spectacular view of Kanjirowa Himal (66612m) then we will reach an alpine area with junipers called Thaneba or Lake side camp, a beautiful place of camping.

    (BLD) (3640 Meters ) (5 - 6 hours) (Camp)
  • DAY 10

    Trek to Lar Tsa

    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 a arrow gorge where will set our camp. We can continue trek but there is possibility of altitude sickness problem.

    (BLD) (4120 Meters ) (6 hours) (Camp)
  • DAY 11

    Trek to Shey Gompa

    We will start trek by a long and strenuous climb of about 2 and 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 a 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 spiritual heart of Dolpo. Every year many pilgrims visit his gompa to make Kora (clockwise circuit) of crystal peak.

    (BLD) (4320 Meters ) (7 - 8 hours) (Camp)
  • DAY 12

    Rest Day - Shey Gompa

    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 centre 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.

    (BLD) (4320 Meters ) (Camp)
  • DAY 13

    Trek 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 beautiful view of northern part of Tibetan plateau, which is 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 friendly environment.

    (BLD) (4430 Meters ) (6-7 hours) (Camp)
  • DAY 14

    Trek to Saldang

    Our Trek to Saldang starts with climbing a tree slope. We have to ascend to 4700m before going down steep slopes to 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.

    (BLD) (4046 Meters ) (3 hours) (Camp)
  • Day 15

    Trek to Sibu

    We will leave Saldang village. 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.

    (BLD) (4000 Meters ) (6 hours) (Camp)
  • Day 16

    Trek to Jengla

    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.

    (BLD) (4480 Meters ) (4 - 5 hours) (Camp)
  • DAY 17

    Trek to Tokyo Gaon

    To reach to Tokyo Gaon we have to cross the Jeng La which is about 4850m. It will take about 2 hrs 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 kilometer along the Tarap Chu River. It consist of ten villages with cultivated fields, many Gompas and Chhortens.

    (BLD) (4240 Meters ) (6 - 7 hours) (Camp)
  • DAY 18

    Trek to Dho Tarap

    To reach to Dho Tarap we will walk east along the downward lower of Tarap Chu. The trail is easy as it is well travelled. There are many mani walls, we can see but some of the Chhortens are in a bad situation. The “Frencch 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.

    (BLD) (4200 Meters ) (2 hours) (Camp)
  • Day 19

    Trek to Serkam

    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.

    (BLD) (3623 Meters ) (7 hours) (Camp)
  • DAY 20

    Trek to Tarakot

    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 is 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, chillies 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.

    (BLD) (2280 Meters ) (5 hours) (Camp)
  • DAY 21

    Trek to Dunai

    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 camp site you used before. You will now have completed the circuit and can mark the occasion with a celebration party!

    (BLD) (2109 Meters ) (5 hours) (Camp)
  • DAY 22

    Trek to Jhuphal

    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.

    (BLD) (2409 Meters ) (3 hours) (Camp)
  • DAY 23

    Flight Nepalgang - Kathmandu

    Early morning flight to Nepalganj. 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. You then connect with the flight back to Kathmandu. If we want to explore any other areas of Kathmandu, we may do that today. Our guides can help you with both souvenir shopping or sightseeing. There will be a farewell dinner in the evening to celebrate the successful completion of our journey. Overnight in Kathmandu.

    (Breakfast) (1335 Meters ) (Hotel)
  • DAY 24

    Departure day

    Your adventure in Nepal comes to an end today! A representative from Community Trek will take you to the airport, approximately 3 hours before your scheduled flight. On your way home you’ll have plenty of time to plan your next adventure in the wonderful country of Nepal.

  • Note

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Trip Facts

  •  Trip Duration:  24 Days
  •  Activities:  Trekking
  •  Country:  Nepal
  •  Group Size:  12 persons
  •  Price:  From 4,500 US $ PP.
  •  Trip Style:  Camping
  •  Diffculty:  Very Hard
  •  Best Season:  Mar/May & Sept/Nov
  •  Transport:  Flight/Private vehicle

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