Upper Dolpo Trek


Burrowed between the high Tibetan plateau and the Dhaulagiri region, Dolpo region is truly the Shangri la of your dreams. With Nepal Eco Adventure let’s go Upper Dolpo Trekking, to a sanctuary for devout Buddhists, created by Guru Rinpoche, according to the mythologies.

Upper Dolpo Trekking is a once in a lifetime experience. Trekking to the remote and isolated region of the mid-western region of Nepal, to see the landscape in its naturally rugged state and its remoteness to understand and believe. The most of the region is uncharted and unexplored, suitable for trekkers who want a change from the tourist-packed mainstream trekking routes.

The entire district was closed to trekkers up until 1989. This has led this region to be one of the world’s most ancient and well conserved region. In the past, only some anthropologists and geographers had explored the region in the past. The Upper Dolpo Trekking was opened to organized trekking groups by a special permit from Nepal Eco Adventure.

The east and the south skyline are bordered by the Dhaulagiri (8,167m) and Chure Himal range. Dhaulagiri was thought to be the tallest mountain in the world for the longest time! The view of Dhaulagiri, Annapurna, and Kanjiroba from upper Dolpa is absolutely regal.

The up close view of the beautiful mountains, ancient monasteries and frosty turquoise lakes, Upper Dolpo Trekking has it all. The huddled settlement of 5000 in Dolpo region makes its people some of the “world’s highest dwellers”. The antique settlements in Upper Dolpo are situated 4,300 meters and above!

The high and parched valley of Dolpo in northernmost Nepal houses the last miscellanies and remnants of the ancient Tibetan culture. To add more to that, Dolpo is the only region in the earth where the people practice the ancient Pre-Buddhist religion, Bon Po. The time has stood static yet tranquil in Upper Dolpo for centuries. The people of Upper Dolpo are unaware about the life beyond the mounts. The remoteness and exclusiveness from the modern world has made the culture and tradition of this region unharmed and untouched.

Along with the panoramic view of the beautiful mountains and living the ancient culture and tradition, Upper Dolpo Trekking has more to offer. We can see the exotic animals like Blue Sheep, Snow Leopard, Mountain Goat and Himalayan Langur.

During our 25 days long trek, we will pass by interesting ancient primeval villages, be part of fascinating culture and meet interesting people. We will cross exciting high passes, relish in the beauty and tranquility of the Shey Phoksundo Lake and experience spirituality in the holy Shey Gompa.

In Dolpo, the monsoons created by sea winds blowing from the Gulf of Bengal is tempered by the Dhaulagiri range. That’s why Upper Dolpa Trekking is even possible during the summer months. It’s even a plus point because Orchids, Edelweiss, Campanules, Forget-me nots are all in full glory.

Trekking into this Trans Himalayan Region is an experience of a life time. Nepal Eco Adventure’s Upper Dolpa Trekking offers to you the right amount of adventure, thrill, gratification and spirituality. Come, trek to the wild west of this Himalayan country and experience it for yourself.

The other alternative for the trek is Lower Dolpo Trekking.

Highlights of Upper Dolpo Trekking

  • Beautiful view of Himalayans
  • Musk Deer, Snow Leopard, Blue Sheep
  • Annapurna and Dhaulagiri mountain range
  • Mt. Saipal – Mt. Api
  • 800 years old Shey Gompa
  • Shey Phoksundo National Park
  • Shey Phoksundo Lake
  • Indigenous culture of the Mountain people
  • Ringmo Village

25 Days Upper Dolpo Trek Altitude Chart

25 Days Upper Dolpo Trek Altitude Chart


Day 1
Arrival in Kathmandu (1,400m).

Once you land at Tribhuwan International Airport (TIA), our airport representatives will kindly receive you and take you to your hotel, in a private car or a high-end tourist bus. Our representatives will brief you about the trek. After checking in, you can either explore this vibrant and exciting city on your own, or, take a cozy rest at your hotel.

Day 2
Sightseeing of capital and pre-trip meeting

Your sightseeing of this ancient city begins at around 8:30 am, after breakfast. A specialized tour guide and a comfy private vehicle will be available for your assistance. First we will visit the biggest Hindu temple of Nepal, Pashupati Nath, which predates to Lichhavi period. Then, to Boudha Nath, and Swayambhu Nath, shrines of lord Buddha, uniquely built in Shikhara style. The evening will be spent at Kathmandu Durbar Square, testimonial of middle age architecture. We will brief you about the journey that starts tomorrow. You can do some last minute shopping for the trek in Thamel or New Road.

Day 3
Flight to Nepalgunj (150m).

We will board a plane on the 3rd day. We will fly from to Nepalgunj from Kathmandu (60 minutes). After a tiring day, you can spend the evening in your hotel or explore this vibrant city.

Day 4
Fly to Juphal (2,400m) and trek to Dunai (2,150m),

From Nepalgunj we will take a plane to Juphal, it’s about 35 minutes long. After landing in Juphal, we will meet our trekking crew and walk through the green terraced fields along the Bheri River and through the narrow canyon. After three hours of trekking, we will reach a large village of Dunai, where we will spend the night.

Day 5
Trek to Ankhe (2,600m).

From Dunai, we will cross the suspension bridge and move westward. At the meeting point of the Thuri Bheri and Suli Gad rivers, we will follow the latter one and move north. We will hike up gradually, with the sound of the river thriving in the backdrop. We will walk through marijuana, millet, pumpkin and potato fields. We will continue our trek along the river and reach a small settlement called Hanke. It is the gateway to Shey Phoksundo National Park. We will walk through Parela and Rahagaon to reach Ankhe. What’s interesting is these names mean eyelashes, eyebrows and eyes respectively! It will take us 6 hours to trek through.

Day 6
Trek to Renje (3,104m).

The trek starts to get a little challenging from this point. After crossing a dwindling river in well-built bridges, we will hike uphill on a steep trail on a narrow path. From there, we will descend for some time along the river and then ascend up, relishing the beautiful view of the surrounding landscape. After trekking for seven hours, we may camp on the side of Suligad River.

Day 7
Trek to Phoksundo Lake (3,600m)

We will start early in the morning. The trek will be fairly easy for the first few hours. From Sumdo, we will incline down steeply. We will climb a ridge at 3,875m from where we can have the amazing view of the 300m waterfall, biggest in Nepal and the Phoksundo Lake. We will drop away through beautiful Birch forests to reach the Phoksundo Khola and beautiful settlement of Ringmo, decorated with its mud plastered Chortens and Mani walls. It is a lively and vibrant village. From here, we will walk a short distance to reach the shores of Phoksundo Lake where we’ll set the campsite. It’s approximately a 7 hour long trek today.

Day 8
Trek to Phoksundo Khola (3,507m).

We will follow the adventurous trail that is suspended on a footway of wood supported on pegs, driven into gaps in the rocks. We will go steeply up, up to 4,040m and then drop down to the bottom of the valley to enter the bank of Shey Phoksundo Khola, where we will camp for the night. We will trek for 6 hours throughout the day.

Day 9
Trek to Phoksundo Bhanjyang (4,402m) - 7 hrs

Today we will be crossing few streams barefoot! We will cross the glacial valley and head north. As the trail goes on to become narrower and narrower we will cross impressive vertical cliffs and crooked rock formations. At the meeting point of Phoksundo river and another unnamed river, there is a very old wooden bridge which we will cross, of course. A long, tiring climb will lead us to sheep grazing land from where the trail turns up a still gorge. Another long and tiring climb to the top and it will bring us to another valley from where we can see the adventurous Kang La Pass. We will spend the night in overnight camps. The trek will be 7 hours long.

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

The trek today is especially tiring and demanding today. It will take us around 3 hours to reach the top of the Kang La Pass at altitude of 5,151m. The view from the top more than compensates for all the hard work. While descending the steep valley floor, we have to be extra careful. It will take only around 45 minutes. A beautiful red Chorten will mark your arrival in Shey Gompa. An old-fashioned log bridge will take us to the Shey Gompa compound where we will be spending the night in a tent. The trek will be around 7 hours long for the day. It will be a 7 hour long trek.

Day 11
Exploration day in Shey Gompa.

Shey literally means crystal in the Tibetan language. This monastery is also called the crystal mountain. We can visit the Shey Gompa and take blessings from the Lama. We can visit the Tsakang Gompa, west of Shey. It has been a meditation hub for lamas in medieval times. The monastery was built in the 11th century.

Here, we can witness the perfect blend and harmony of Tibetan Buddhism and ancient Pre-Buddhist religion Bon Po. We can later go around the area and explore the vicinity.

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

We will start the day by trekking along a pleasant track covered with juniper shrub. We will ascend up to a stony gray canyon. It begins with a zigzag trail of rocks and eroded soil and it will bring us to the flat spot, suitable for a little picnic. After 20 minutes of some steep climbing, we will reach the top of the Saldand La Pass. From here we can enjoy the great view of the barren, and the coppery red landscape of Mustang. Then we will descend down to the north and it might get long and tiring. The view of grazing yaks and the nomadic tents made from yak hair will welcome. This signals that you have now entered the Namduna Gaon. Here we can visit the Namgung Monastery set against a backdrop of the cliff. The village only has six houses and terraced fields on both the sides. We can see stretched out Barley fields, the main crop of the district. We can visit the recently built beautiful monastery in the periphery. It will be a 7 hour long trek.

Day 13
Trek to Saldang (3,903m).

After leaving the Namjung Valley, we will hike uphill. It begins with a long and exciting traverse along the rocky mountains. At the bottom of the valley we can see terraced fields of ripening crops. We will ascend for some time before going downhill to the beautiful village of Salding, located on a plateau high above the Nam Khong Nala River. It is the biggest village of the district. It is an arid village of the Trans Himalayan Tibetan plateau. It will take us around 4 hours for a day’s trekking.

Day 14
Trek to Sibu (3,942m)

We will leave Saldang early in the morning and go down the river bank, then the terraced fields, beautiful stupas and Chortens. We can see any Mani stones on our way and can visit the Chaiba Monastery on our way. We will go through the village of Namdo, a prosperous village of 60 houses and 400 people. We can visit the Namdo monastery and another monastery on top of the cliff. We will camp near the settlement called Sibu, along the river bank. We will spend the night in an overnight camp. We will trek for 6 hours.

Day 15
Trek to foot of Jeng La Pass (4,369m).

Following the dwindling river, the first few hours of the trek is going to be fairly easy. After two hours, we will cross another stream and then turn to a side valley. The climb from there is very steep. We will then reach a pleasant meadow, but it is bestrewn with rocks. After the five hour trek, night will be spent in overnight camp.

Day 16
Cross the Jeng La pass (4,845m), trek to Tokyu Gaon (4,240m)

The trail today is compacted which makes the walking easier today. But at times it gets very steep. It will only take 2 hours to reach the top of Jeng La. The view from here of the Dhaulagiri Mastiff is truly mesmerizing. After a rough trail downhill towards the Tarap Valley, we will find ourselves in a lush green valley in the few hours leading us to Tarap Chu. Tarap is truly a majestic valley, vast plains on the lap of snowy mountains extending 20kms along the Tarap Chu. On reaching Tokyu Gaon we can visit Gompas and Chortens. We can spend the night in the Tokyu Monastery compound. The monastery belongs to Chaiba sect. We will trek for 7 hours.

Day 17
Trek to Dho Tarap (4,090m) - 4.5 hrs

The trail today is broad and fairly easy. We will walk along the fields where we can see the men and women busy harvesting the crops. We can also see Mani Walls and Chortens, many of which need a reconstruction now. The village of Tarap is mainly populated by Magars and few Tibetans. The people here follow Bon Po or Buddhism. We can go visit the Gompa here and receive blessings from the resident Lama. We will spend the night in an overnight camp on the site.

Day 18
Trek to Serkam (3,630m)

Following the course of the Tarap Khola, we will go downhill. We will cross the narrow gorges on our way. We might even see Blue Sheeps, Yaks and people taking their yaks and goats for grazing. We will walk along a more heaved path as we walk away from the river. We will cross one of the modern suspension bridges. The track will get very narrow in places. We will spend the night in an overnight camp. It will take around 6 and a half hour.

Day 19
Trek to Khani Gaon (2,250m).

We will continue our descent down the canyon of the Tarap River. Today we will trek on paths, broad and silky to very narrow and steep. We will also mount the flights of man made staircases which need to be tackled with some care. Our campsite will be a pleasant and beautiful meadow in the shade of big trees. We will spend the night in an overnight camp. The trek will be seven hours long.

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

Leaving KhaniGaon and the mountains in the backdrop in a newly built suspension bridge we will walk along the river, sometimes uphill and sometimes downhill. Sometimes the trail can be more challenging and we will also cross one of the rivers on wet stepping stones! The trek will be 4 hours long, approximately.

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

Leaving the wild adventures of the treks back up there, we will climb down mainly. Walking beside the resonating Bheri River, after 5 hours we will reach the village of Dunai. Now we have completed the circuit of the beautiful Dolpo. We will take rest and later go exploring on arrival.

Day 22
Trek to Juphal (2,402m).

We will now go back to the small town of Juphal. At first the trail is flat and broad but as we go up the trail goes on to become more and more steep. We will spend the night in an overnight camp. The trek will be roughly 3 hours long.

Day 23
Fly to Kathmandu via Nepalgunj from Juphal.

We will board the two planes on the 14th day. We will fly from to Nepalgunj (35 minutes) and from Nepalgunj to Kathmandu (60 minutes). After a tiring day, you can spend the evening in your hotel or explore this vibrant city.

Day 24
Leisure day in Kathmandu.

You can spend the day further exploring this historic city. You can also go travel to the outskirts of the valley. Buy souvenirs at Thamel, Basantapur and old towns of Patan and Bhaktapur to take back home.

Day 25

The day has come to leave this remarkable country. Our representatives will transfer you to the airport from where you’ll board a flight to your next destination. Nepal Eco Adventure will be happy to serve you on all of your adventure, trekking and tours in the Himalayas.

What is Included

  • Airport pickup and drop by private car.
  • Three night standard hotel on bed and breakfast (B/B) and two nights hotel At Nepalgunj.
  • Guided city tour as per above program with private vehicle and with tour guide.
  • Full board meal (veg. /non veg.) during camping, prepared by our expert cook with Tea & coffee.
  • Boiled and purify drinking water for the trek.
  • Twin sharing tented accommodation and other equipment during the camping trek. We will provide fully water proof two men tent, dining tent, kitchen tent, Table with chairs, kitchen utensils, toilet tents etc.
  • A government licensed English speaking Guide during the trek. A cook, Kitchen helper, required number of porters, their food, accommodation, salary, insurance, equipment and medicine.
  • Medical supplies (first aid kit will be available).
  • Arrangement of Emergency Helicopter service which will be paid by your Travel insurance company.
  • Down sleeping bag / Jackets, walking sticks, and other necessary equipments during the trek. (If you don`t have you own)
  • Use of sleeping bag, down Jacket and walking Poles (if you don’t have your own, To be return after trip completed). Using these 3 items you pay $10 USD each as maintenance and washing charge.
  • Special Trekking upper Dolpo permit and other required paper documents.
  • Flight fare from Kathmandu-Nepalgunj-Juphal -Nepalgunj-Kathmandu including airport departure taxes.
  • All our government taxes tourist service charges. official expenses.

What is Excluded

  • Food while you are in Kathmandu Lunch and Dinner.
  • Nepal entry visa fees (you may easily issue the visa upon your arrival at International Airport – Kathmandu). You need 2 passport size photos and $40 dollar.
  • Your Travel insurance.
  • International airfare.
  • Your personal expenses.
  • All the alcoholic and non alcoholic hot and cold drinks.
  • Tips for trekking staff and driver (Tipping is expected).
  • All sightseeing tour entrance fee $30 USD per person.
  • Any other expenses which are in mentioned on include section.


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Trek’s Route Map

Upper Dolpo Trek

Trip Facts

  • 25 Days Upper Dolpo Trek
  • Strenuous
  • Minimum 02 person
  • March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November (this region lies in the rain shadow so you can trek all the month)
  • 5125m
  • Flight
  • NEA-RAT-06

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