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Upper Dolpo Trekking- 28 Days

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Daily Tour 28 day Availability: 2019-01-01
Kathmandu 44600, Nepal Dolpo Region Tour Guide: Ngwang Sherpa
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Overview

Dolpo region is situated between the Tibetan plateau and the Dhaulagiri ranges. The entire district was closed to trekkers until 1989 when the southern part of Dolpo was opened to organized trekking groups. Our adventure begins with tours of UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Kathmandu. Then fly to Nepalgunj and then to Juphal from where we begin our trek in the Dolpo region which was made famous by Peter Matthiessen’s book – The Snow Leopard. Nepal’s first English subtitled movie on Dolpo, The Caravan, was also a huge success and was also nominated for the Oscar Award in the best foreign language film category. During our trek, will pass through interesting villages, trekking routes and meet fascinating people. Will also cross a few high Himalayan passes and enjoy the vast and tranquil beauty of Phoksundo Lake. From Shey Gompa follow the ancient Trans Himalayan trade route and return back to Jhuphal as our trek ends. The trek indeed takes us into the wild west of Nepal.

Accommodations:

Accommodations are included in the trip cost and ACOH has chosen the best deluxe accommodation for 3 nights in Kathmandu in a 3-star hotel, 2 night in lodge in Nepalgunj/Jupal, and rest other nights in comfortable two-men camping tent. To sleep in tent, 4 season sleeping bag and foam mattress will be provided. We maintain standard comfort in every matter based on the enforceable conditions such as weather calamities. All hotel and camping accommodation is on twin sharing basis, and will provide you single supplement if there is different sex without extra charge. If you prefer a single room, you may indicate your preference and get single room/tent on request by paying single supplement USD350.

Important Note:

  Your safety is of paramount importance to us at Alpine Club of Himalaya. We have the absolute authority to cancel the trip or change the itinerary, when deemed necessary or when we have reason to believe your safety is at stake. Weather conditions, the health condition of a group member, natural disasters, and such, can contribute to changes in the itinerary when traveling in remote mountainous regions. In these extreme situations, we kindly request that you offer your full co-operation to the trusted leader of the group appointed by Alpine Club of Himalaya. However, we assure you that we will make every effort to keep to the above itinerary.  
DEPARTURE/RETURN LOCATION
Kathmandu International Airport(Google Map)

Trip Fact

PriceUSD 5555 Per Person
Activities: Trekking and Sightseeing
Duration: 28 Days
Trek Style: Classic
Accommodation: 3 Nights accommodation in Kathmandu, 1 night accommodation in Nepalgunj  and 23 Nights in Lodge/Guest/ Tent House during Trek
Meals: Full Board during Trek and Breakfasts, Welcome and Farewell meals in Kathmandu.
Transportation:Private Vehicles/ Flights
Service Level:Comfort
Maximum Altitude:5,460m (17,914ft) at Sangda La
Trek Grading:4

Trip Highlights
  • Observe the remoteness of Nepal
  • Snowy peaks
  • Ancient and isolated villages
  • Buddhist monasteries
  • Enthralling culture and tradition

COST INCLUDED & NOT INCLUDED
  • Airport pickups and drops in a private vehicle
  • 3-star hotel accommodation in Kathmandu with breakfast
  • Teahouse accommodation during the trek
  • All meals (breakfast, lunch and dinner) during the trek
  • Welcome and farewell dinners
  • All ground transportation on a comfortable private vehicle as per the itinerary
  • Domestic flights (Kathmandu-Nepalgunj-Jhupal round trip)
  • Guided city tour in Kathmandu by private vehicle
  • Entrance fees for sightseeing/monument visits as per the itinerary
  • An experienced, English-speaking and government-licensed trek leader and assistant trek leader (4 trekkers = 1 assistant guide)
  • Porter service (2 trekkers = 1 porter)
  • Staff costs including their salary, insurance, equipment, domestic airfare, food and accommodation
  • Down jacket and sleeping bag (to be returned after trip completion)
  • Alpine Club of Himalaya’s trekking bag/duffel bag, t-shirt and trekking map are yours to take
  • All necessary paperwork and trekking permits (National Park Permit, TIMS)
  • Medical kit (carried by your trek leader)
  • All government and local taxes
  •  Nepalese visa fee
  •  Excess baggage charge(s)
  •  Extra night accommodation in Kathmandu because of early arrival, late departure, early return from mountain (due to any reason) than the scheduled itinerary
  •  Lunch and evening meals in Kathmandu as well as Entrance Fees
  •  International flights
  •  Travel and rescue insurance
  •  Personal expenses (phone calls, laundry, bar bills, battery recharge, extra porters, bottle or boiled water, shower, etc)
  •  Tips for guide(s), porter(s) and driver(s)

Departure Date

  The given cost are per person and exclude international flights. Given below are the departure dates available for online booking. If the given date is not favourable then please contact us and we will customize your trip on dates you preferred  
Departure DateImportant NoteGallery

Availability

  • Spaces Trip is available. Send us booking request
  • Guaranteed Trip is Guaranteed to Run
  • Limited Space Trip is Guaranteed to Run, but with only limited spaces. Please contact us
  • Close Trip full or unavailable But we can open new departure so please contact us
Highlights
Your safety is of paramount importance to us at Alpine Club of Himalaya. We have the absolute authority to cancel the trip or change the itinerary, when deemed necessary or when we have reason to believe your safety is at stake. Weather conditions, the health condition of a group member, natural disasters, and such, can contribute to changes in the itinerary when traveling in remote mountainous regions. In these extreme situations, we kindly request that you offer your full co-operation to the trusted leader of the group appointed by Alpine Club of Himalaya. However, we assure you that we will make every effort to keep to the above itinerary.
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Day 01: Arrive in Kathmandu (1300m/4264ft)

Upon arrival at Tribhuvan International Airport in Kathmandu, a representative from Alpine Club of Himalaya (ACOH) will pick you up and send you to our hotel. At noon, take a rest or visit ACOH’s office. In the evening, there will be a welcome dinner hosted by ACOH where you will be served with delicious authentic Nepalese cuisine. Overnight in Kathmandu.

(Included Meals: Dinner)

Day 02: Kathmandu for Sightseeing and Trek Preparation

After breakfast will start a guided tour to several historical and spiritual attractions in Kathmandu. Some of these landmarks are considered World Heritage Sites including the historic Durbar Square, the sacred Hindu temple of Pashupatinath, the famous ‘Monkey Temple’ (Swayambhunath) and Buddhist shrine (Bouddhanath), which is one of the largest stupas in the world. At noon, there will be a pre-trip discussion where you will meet our trek leader and other team members. ACOH will give briefing on the trek and provide you the opportunity to ask any questions related your upcoming adventure. Overnight in Kathmandu.

(Included Meals: Breakfast)

Day 03: Fly from Kathmandu to Nepalgunj (1 hrs)

After a short excursion in Kathmandu, take an hour-long flight from Kathmandu to Nepalgunj, located in Western Nepal. Nepalgunj, a town near the Nepal-India border, is also the gateway to Simikot, Humla. The town itself is an interesting Terai town that showcases the diverse culture of Nepal. In Nepalgunj, will visit the local market, mini-zoo and nearby villages. Overnight in Nepalgunj.

(Included Meals: Breakfast)

Day 04: Fly from Nepalgunj to Jhuphal (Dolpo) and Trek to Dunai (2850m/9348ft) (45 mins flight, 2-3 hrs trek)

After breakfast, fly to Jhupal, a beautiful town located over the Himalayan foothills, with views of Annapurna and Dhaulagiri peaks to its north. Here, you will meet your trek staffs and begin the adventure. Walk through terraced fields to the Bheri River and its narrow gorge. Continue walking to Dunai, which is the administrative headquarter of the Dolpo region. Then explore the small town in the evening and camp there for a night.

(Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 05: Dunai to Ankhe (2896m/9499ft) (5-6 hrs)

Leave Dunai and cross a suspension bridge and turn to the west following a trail past a hospital. Ascends up the side of the treeless, Thulo Bheri valley before entering Phoksundo river valley. During the walk will get to the view of Kagmara Peak up the valley. Pass through walnut groves, Dhera and Rahagaun villages, walk down dense jungles and finally reach Ankhe. Overnight in Ankhe.

(Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 06: Ankhe to Sulighat (5-6 hrs)

Our trail ascends and descends along a wooded riverbank and climbs on a steep trail. The ups and downs can be a bit monotonous, but there are several streams along the way that offer a chance to cool off. The trail eventually leaves the forests and passes through a grassy slope high above the river. Trek downhill on a trail surrounded by lush forests before reaching a cliff followed by a dizzying drop on a wobbly stone staircase to the river bank. Continue trekking until we reach Sulighat and spend a night.

(Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 07: Sulighat to Phoksundo Lake (3611m/11,849ft) (4-5 hrs)

Journey continues as we trek along the valley floor to the confluence of the Phoksundo and Pungmo rivers. After crossing a bridge, walk on the western bank of the Pungmo Khola. The trail passes through a cedar forest before reaching Palam village. From here trek up to a ridge and enjoy distant views of Phoksundo Lake and a spectacular waterfall, one of the highest in Nepal. Next descends through birch forests to the upper reaches of the Phoksundo Khola, and then to the picturesque Ringmo village with its mud-plastered chortens and mani walls. From here take a short walk to the shores of the Phoksundo Lake. Overnight at Phoksundo Lake.

(Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 08: Acclimatization and Rest at Phoksundo Lake

Today is the rest day for acclimatization at Phoksundo Lake. During the day you can embark on a short hike to the village of Ringmo and Tibetan Buddhist Monastery. During the short walks, you will have a chance to get in touch with the local culture. The Dolpo people wear homespun clothing that is sometimes dyed a maroon colour and they favour Tibetan-style somba or dhocha (boots with upturned toes) for foot wear. Both men and women often wear religious amulets and strings of coral, amber and turquoise. Overnight at Phoksundo Lake.

(Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 09: Trek to Phoksundo Khola (4-5 hrs)

Journey continues as trail moves around the top western end of the Phoksundo Lake where it contours on a rocky ledge along the lake’s western bank. This unsteady trail suspended on a gangway of wood supported on pegs driven into crevasse in the rocks, signals the remoteness of the area we are about to enter. At the westernmost edge of the lake the path leads through a lush meadow that opens up into the flood plain of the Phoksundo Khola. Then walk through the valley, crossing the river and avoiding the occasional boggy marsh underfoot and then coming on the bank of the river to the overnight camp.

(Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 10: Phoksunds Khola to Phoksundo Bhanjyang (6-7 hrs)

For an hour or so, walk on a trail that leads us along the level path through a glacial valley which heads due north. At the confluence of the Phoksundo Khola and another mountain stream, there is an old wooden bridge. From here, walk towards the north-east. A long climb brings us to a sheep meadow where trail veers up a steep ravine. A hard climb to the top brings to yet another valley where you can see the Kang-La pass. Set up camp near the pass in a place that Peter Matthiessen christened ‘Snowfields Camp’. Our trek today will also get to admire the views of Chhamlang peak 6 (6739m) and peak 7 (6105m).

(Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 11: Phoksundo Bhanjyang to Shey Gompa (4500m/14,760ft) via Kang-La Pass (5360m/17,581ft) (5-6 hrs)

In the morning, ascend on a steep trail littered with slate towards the pass. The climb to the top of the pass is quite strenuous. From the top of Kang-la Pass, you can experience excellent views of the large valley dissected by a gushing river. Descend to the valley floor on a steep trail. Next walk on a meandering trail along the banks of a river, crossing and re-crossing it several times. There are mud caves lining the hills overlooking the river. Will also pass through meadows where we see grazing yaks, hundreds of sheep and domestic mountain goat (Chyangra). After crossing a quaint log bridge, will reach the Shey Gompa compound to spend a night.

(Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 12: Acclimatization and Rest Day at Shey Gompa

Shey Gompa was built in 1655 and the monastery is noted for its giant copper with gilded gold statue of a seated Shakyamuni Buddha. To the east of the Gompa is Crystal Mountain which is one of the strangest mountains, as its contorted cliffs are laced with quartz and embedded with a rich variety of marine fossils. Today we will get a good rest for better acclimatization. Spend the day hiking around Shey village which 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. Overnight in Shey Gompa.

(Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 13: Shey Gompa to Namduna Gaun (4800m/15,744ft) via Saldang La (5200m/17,056ft) (6-7 hrs)

Start our day by a pleasant trail amidst juniper trees which descends into a grey, stony canyon. Then the path begins to zigzag over bare rocks and coarse eroded soil until it eventually brings us to the top of Saldang-la pass. The subsequent descent towards the north is long and tiring but grazing yaks and sheep, and nomadic tents made from yak hair is a comforting sight. In Namduna Gaun, will visit Namgung monastery. The red stone monstery is built against the backdrop of a cliff on the north wall of a gorge. Overnight in Namuda Gaun.

(Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 14: Namduna Gaun to Saldang (3620m/11,874ft) (4-5 hrs)

Leave the village and climb up a slope and begin a long walk along dusty barren mountains. After 3-4 hours of hard climb, will begin to see Saldang Village below us on a plateau high above the Namga Khola stream. It has a picturesque appearance. Saldang is the largest village of the inner Dolpo area. The village stretches for nearly two kilometers on an open slope and consists of five villages having about eighty well-built houses with nearly six hundred people. It is a prosperous village not only agriculturally but also for its strategic location on a trade route to Tibet. Overnight in Saldang.

(Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 15: Saldang to Yangze Gompa (4960m/16,267ft) (4-5 hrs)

From Saldang, walk further north along the Nagon Khola (river) on a wild and barren terrain. Begin our walk on a fairly gradual path with few ups and downs. On the way, pass through Marang and Ki villages. Next will cross a tributary of Panzang River and walk towards the east and cross the river again before reaching Yangze gompa which houses an old Bon-Po Monastery. Overnight in Yangze Gompa.

(Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 16: Yangze Gompa to Sibu (4560m/14,957ft) (6-7 hrs)

From Yangze, there are two trails that connect to Sibu. To save time, we will retrace the path back towards Saldang village, which will be much easier and shorter than the other route. From Saldang, walk along a river and pass through terraced fields, stupas, chortens, heaps of mani stones and a Chaiba monastery, then pass through the Namdo village, which is also prosperous, with about sixty houses having nearly 400 inhabitants. It stretches for over 5-kilometer on the high slopes to the left of Nam Khong Khola. The Namdo monastery is located near the river bed. Continues further down the river for another two hours to camp near a small settlement of Sibu.

(Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 17: Sibu to Jeng-la Phedi (4900m/16,072ft) (5-6 hrs)

Walk along the Nam Khong Khola for a while and pass by caravans with yaks that are moving towards the Tibetan border. After turning east and walking for a while, will arrive at a confluence of two small streams. Next, the steep trail ascends to a grazing area below the Jeng La pass (4,900m/16,072ft). Set up camp in this beautiful meadow. Overnight in Jeng la Phedi.

(Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 18: Jeng-la Phedi to Tokyu Gaon (4209m/13809ft) via Jeng La Pass (5090m/16,695ft) (5-6 hrs)

Wake up early morning and set forth on today’s trek. It will take two long hours to reach the top of the Jeng La pass from where we get remarkable views of the north face of the Dhaualgiri massif. From here, descend on a rough trail to the Tarap Valley, a fascinating valley with vast plains in high mountains that extends twenty kilometers along Tarap Chu river. Will set up camp close to the monastery at Tokyu and spend a night.

(Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 19: Tokyu to Dho Tarap (4040m/13,251ft) (4-5 hrs)

Trek downhill on a plain valley with patches of lush grass on both sides of the river which is completely different from other parts of inner Dolpo. There is also a marsh which is a common feature in the Desert Mountains of Tibet and the Ladakh Himalaya. Both Bon Po and Buddhist sects are practiced in the valley. After a short trek, will reach Dho Tarap. Overnight in Dho Tarap.

(Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 20: Rest Day at Dho Tarap

Today is the rest day and do stroll around the village of Dho Tarap which is surrounded by an irregular stone wall. The walks will help you get acquainted with the local culture of the area. At Dho, about 40 houses are divided into three clusters and built in a haphazard way inhabited by few Tibetans and mostly Magars who are a hill tribe of Nepal. While here, you can either visit a Buddhist Gompa which is closest to our campsite or embark upon a 40-minute walk and visit a Bon Po Gompa.Overnight in Dho Tarap.

(Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 21: Dho Tarap to Tarap Khola (Kamakharka) (3800m/12,464ft) (6-7 hrs)

From Tarap, descend towards a wide valley which eventually narrows into a gorge. Walk along juniper and wild rose bushes just above the tree line. Along the trek, will see herds of blue sheep and by the afternoon, will reach the confluence of the Tarap Chu and the Lang Khola, a stream that joins with Tarap River from further east. Set up camp on a nice meadow also known as Kamakharka and spend a night.

(Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 22: Tarap Khola to Khanigaon (3150m/10,332ft) (4-5 hrs)

Continue walking down the gorge of the Tarap River, at times alongside it. During that, will pass by the local people who will be taking their herds to lower pastures for the winter. This will be one of the most exciting days of this trip 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 a path and you may 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 may be forced to cross the icy torrent on foot. Finally, reach our camping spot beside the Tarap Khola at Khanigaon to spend a night.

(Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 23: Khanigaon to Tarakot (2537m/8321ft) (4-5 hrs)

From the camp, follow a trail that takes us to the village of Lalberi. Then passes through a lush forest, descends into another gorge and continues to follow the river again. After reaching Tarakot, you can visit Sandul Gompa which lies about 8-kilometer east of the village at a juncture of Barbung Khola and Tarap Chu. The monastery stands on a hill to the south of Bheri River. Today will camp by the Tarap Chu River about 150 meters below Tarakot, near the police post.  Overnight in Tarakot.

(Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 24: Tarakot to Dunai (2140m/7019ft) (5-6 hrs)

Journey continues where trek on a trail behind the Bheri River before crossing a bridge near the Lawan village. Our trail will continue alongside the big Bheri Rriver ascending until the Byas Gadi. From here, moves towards the west on a relatively easy trail. Cross the river again near the Lochakhola Gaon and ascend to Dunai for an overnight stay. Today’s trek will mostly be on a wonderful gorge with pine trees. Overnight in Dunai.

(Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 25: Dunai to Jhuphal (2-3 hrs)

Fron Dunai, trek along the Bheri River enjoying the beautiful landscape. On the way, pass through Dhupichaur and Rupgad villages as well as a temple. Continue trekking via Kalagaonda village and Motipur village before reaching the small airstrip. Overnight in Jhuphal.

(Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 26: Fly from Jhuphal to Nepalgunj and then to Kathmandu

Today will take the earliest flight from Jhupal to Nepalgunj. Upon reaching Nepalgunj, return to Kathmandu on the next available flight and then you will be transferred to our hotel. There is nothing to do but remember to exchange contacts and emails with travel companions to organize and share the photos. Overnight in Kathmandu.

(Included Meals: Breakfast)

Day 27: Rest Day in Kathmandu

This is an extra day set aside for you to either rest or explore Kathmandu on your own. You can do some souvenir shopping or if there is a place is Kathmandu that you wish to visit, then ACOH can arrange for you. In the evening, there will be a farewell dinner hosted by ACOH to celebrate the successful completion of your adventure in Dolpo region of western Nepal. Overnight in Kathmandu.

(Included Meals: Breakfast, Dinner)

Day 28: Final departure

Our adventure in Nepal comes to an end today! A representative from ACOH will send you to the airport approximately 3 hours before the scheduled flight. Have a safe journey home and do come back for more adventures in Nepal.

(Included Meals: Breakfast)

Walking ahead for sometime we face a stiff climb on switchbacks to a mini pass marked with prayer flags at 3540m from where the trail makes highly enjoyable high traverse through a very steep gorge eventually descending to cross the cascades of the Tilba Khola (3570m).

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