Upper Dolpo Trek

Upper Dolpo Trek is a remote and challenging trek in the far western region of Nepal. It is considered one of the most remote and culturally preserved regions of Nepal, and the trekking route takes you through the heart of the Himalayas. The trek is an excellent opportunity to explore the unique culture, customs, and lifestyle of the Dolpo people, who have lived in the region for centuries and have preserved their traditions and way of life.

The trek starts from Juphal, a small town in the Dolpa district of Nepal, which can be reached by a short flight from Kathmandu. The route takes you through beautiful landscapes, including high mountain passes, deep valleys, and pristine alpine lakes. The trek is also an opportunity to see rare wildlife such as the snow leopard, musk deer, and blue sheep.

The Upper Dolpo region is known for its ancient Buddhist monasteries, which are an integral part of the Dolpo people’s culture and religion. The trek takes you through several villages where you can witness their daily lifestyle and learn about their traditions and beliefs. The people of Upper Dolpo are primarily followers of the Bonpo religion, which is an ancient religion that predates Buddhism.

One of the highlights of the Upper Dolpo Trek is visiting the Shey Phoksundo National Park, which is home to the Phoksundo Lake, one of the deepest and most pristine lakes in Nepal. The lake is surrounded by snow-capped peaks, making it a breathtaking sight. The park is also home to several endangered species of flora and fauna, including the blue sheep and the snow leopard.

The Upper Dolpo Trek is a challenging trek that requires a good level of fitness and experience in high altitude trekking. The trek involves crossing several high mountain passes, including the Kang La Pass at an altitude of 5,360 meters. The trek also involves camping in remote locations, which adds to the adventure.

Outline Itinerary:

Day 1: Arrive in Kathmandu
Day 2: Fly from Kathmandu to Nepalgunj
Day 3: Fly from Nepalgunj to Juphal and trek to Dunai (2,850m)
Day 4: Trek from Dunai to Tarakot (2,537m)
Day 5: Trek from Tarakot to Laini Odar (3,370m)
Day 6: Trek from Laini Odar to Nawarpani (3,545m)
Day 7: Trek from Nawarpani to Do Tarap (4,090m)
Day 8: Rest day in Do Tarap
Day 9: Trek from Do Tarap to Numa La Base Camp (4,440m)
Day 10: Trek from Numa La Base Camp to Danigar (4,230m) via Numa La Pass (5,360m)
Day 11: Trek from Danigar to Yak Kharka (3,850m)
Day 12: Trek from Yak Kharka to Sangda Phedi (4,410m)
Day 13: Trek from Sangda Phedi to Sangda (3,710m) via Sangda La Pass (5,160m)
Day 14: Trek from Sangda to Phalegaon (3,700m)
Day 15: Trek from Phalegaon to Jomsom
Day 16: Fly from Jomsom to Pokhara
Day 17: Drive from Pokhara to Kathmandu
Day 18: Departure

Itenerary

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Full Board

Cost Includes:

Cost Excludes:

BC Service

Cost Includes:

Cost Excludes:

Price per person

Usefull Information

Inclusions:

  • Trekking permits (such as the Dolpo Restricted Area Permit)
  • TIMS (Trekkers’ Information Management System) card
  • All necessary government taxes and fees
  • All meals (breakfast, lunch, and dinner) during the trek
  • Accommodation in tea houses or camping (depending on the itinerary)
  • Experienced trekking guide and porters
  • Transport to and from the trek starting/ending point
  • First aid kit

Exclusions:

  • International airfare to and from Nepal
  • Nepal entry visa fees
  • Accommodation, meals, and transportation in Kathmandu (before and after the trek)
  • Travel insurance (required)
  • Personal expenses such as snacks, drinks, and souvenirs
  • Tips for guide and porters
  • Any additional expenses or activities not mentioned in the itinerary

Usefull Information

Clothing:

  • Moisture-wicking base layer (top and bottom)
  • Insulating layer (fleece or down jacket)
  • Waterproof and windproof jacket
  • Trekking pants (quick-dry and convertible to shorts)
  • Long-sleeve shirts
  • T-shirts
  • Thermal underwear (top and bottom)
  • Waterproof and breathable pants (optional)
  • Sun hat or cap
  • Warm hat and gloves
  • Hiking boots (well broken-in)
  • Socks (wool or synthetic)
  • Gaiters (optional but recommended for dusty trails)

Personal Gear:

  • Backpack (50-70 liters)
  • Sleeping bag (rated for cold temperatures)
  • Sleeping pad
  • Trekking poles
  • Sunglasses with UV protection
  • Sunscreen (SPF 30 or higher)
  • Lip balm with SPF
  • Personal first aid kit
  • Personal toiletries
  • Quick-dry towel
  • Water bottles or hydration system
  • Snacks (energy bars, trail mix, etc.)
  • Camera or smartphone for photos
  • Headlamp or flashlight with extra batteries
  • Travel adapter for charging electronics

Climbing Gear (if applicable):

  • Mountaineering boots
  • Crampons
  • Ice axe
  • Climbing harness
  • Climbing helmet
  • Ascender
  • Descender

Miscellaneous:

  • Passport and necessary permits
  • Cash (for tips, snacks, and souvenirs)
  • Travel insurance documents
  • Plastic bags (for trash and wet clothes)
  • Travel guidebook or map
  • Portable charger for electronics

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FAQs

  • What is the Upper Dolpo Trek?

    The Upper Dolpo Trek is a trekking route that takes you through the remote and pristine landscapes of Dolpo, a region located in the northwestern part of Nepal. It offers stunning views of the Himalayas, unique Tibetan culture, and encounters with traditional Bon Buddhist communities.

  • How long does it take to complete the Upper Dolpo Trek?

    The duration of the Upper Dolpo Trek varies depending on the itinerary chosen and individual hiking speed. Typically, it takes around 20 to 30 days to complete the trek, including acclimatization days and exploration of the region.

  • When is the best time to do the Upper Dolpo Trek?

    The best time to trek Upper Dolpo is during the spring (March to May) and autumn (September to November) seasons. These months offer stable weather, clear skies, and moderate temperatures, making for ideal trekking conditions.

  • Do I need any special permits for the Upper Dolpo Trek?

    Yes, trekkers need to obtain special permits for the Upper Dolpo Trek. You’ll require a Restricted Area Permit for Upper Dolpo, which can be obtained through a registered trekking agency in Nepal.

  • Is the Upper Dolpo Trek difficult?

    Yes, the Upper Dolpo Trek is considered to be a challenging trek. Trekkers should be physically fit, experienced in high-altitude trekking, and prepared for long days of walking through rugged terrain and high passes.

  • Are there any altitude-related concerns on the Upper Dolpo Trek?

    Yes, altitude sickness is a concern on the Upper Dolpo Trek, as you’ll be trekking through high-altitude regions. It’s important to acclimatize properly, stay hydrated, and be aware of the symptoms of altitude sickness. Trekkers should ascend gradually and be prepared for changes in altitude.

  • What are the accommodation options on the Upper Dolpo Trek?

    Accommodation options along the Upper Dolpo Trek include camping and basic teahouses/guesthouses in some villages. Camping is often necessary in remote areas where lodging facilities are limited.

  • What is the cultural experience like on the Upper Dolpo Trek?

    The Upper Dolpo region is culturally rich, with traditional Tibetan Buddhist communities practicing the ancient Bon religion. Trekkers have the opportunity to visit remote monasteries, interact with locals, and witness unique cultural practices and festivals.

  • Are there any side trips or attractions along the Upper Dolpo Trek?

    Yes, there are several side trips and attractions you can explore during the Upper Dolpo Trek, including visits to Shey Gompa, Phoksundo Lake, and the remote villages of Ringmo and Dho Tarap.

    Trip Fact

  • Best Seasons spring
  • Duration 18 days
  • Trek Difficulty Moderate

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