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Dolpa Trekking (Shey-Phoksundo Lake Trekking) in Nepal

There must be grit and determination to see the exotic expression of the nature which can be experienced in greater height by visiting the Himalayan regions of Nepal. Among many adventurous trails in the mountainous area of Nepal, Dolpa trekking can be one of the most exciting and breath-taking experiences ever.

Laid at the fringe of northern part of Nepal to demarcate the border with Tibet, Dolpa trekking offers multi-dimensional characteristics while trailing along the lower Dolpa region to Upper Dolpa. Geographically being the largest district of Nepal, it has definitely enormous area to visit.

dolpa trekking

However, the trail mainly focuses to harness the culture and tradition of Tibetan origin followed by the upper Dolpa inhabitants. The people of upper Dolpa resemble the culture, custom and creed of Tibetan community. Dolpa trekking possesses one of the highest altitude village in the world from a sea level.

It’s frontier with two other Himalayan districts of Nepal named Mugu to the west, Mustang to the east and Tibet to the north tells its closeness to the Tibetan values.

Moreover, Dolpa trekking has greater picture and prestige to offer to the trekkers. It has been endowed with Shey-Phoksundo Lake, the mesmerizing beauty of the nature. Its amazing features having no animate creatures in the lake since the time immemorial.

Furthermore it magnetizes you with its color changing feature. It has always been the matter of mystery why this lake doesn’t accept and sustain the living creatures.

In spite of its natural prosperity and cultural richness, the district has yet to get the road connection from the rest of the district. The low region of Dolpa district has been occupied by the Kshetri, Bahun, Dalit communities which represents and follows the Hindu religion, Nepali culture as like majority of people of Hill and Terai regions.

When the trail goes past the low land of the district following the edge Sano Bheri, then come villages with Buddhist flavor having monasteries, stupas and chortens along the way. The further high the trek heads the strong sense of Buddhist Tibetan atmosphere can be found.

As a matter of fact, rest of the upper Dolpa region is inhabited by the people of Bon religion and Buddhism. They have preserved their culture and custom with dignity and audacity. Definitely, they have not experienced the modernization taken place in the other parts of the country.

Indeed, they have also not experienced the sense of derogation and submission by the outsiders. In spite of their highly difficult livelihood and climatic obstruction they have been coping with the geography and securing their antique tradition and arts in the form of their houses, stupas, chortens and monasteries they have built.

The cultural and religious festivals they perform smears the pure attachment and alive affection of Tibetan culture in this part of the world. Even though the standard of living in this region looks very complicated and destitute, this has also been the circumstance which has made them one of the secluded and self-sustained people of the nation.

In recent years, the trade of Yarshagumba has rocketed high which has resulted into the upgrade of economic standard of the locals. In upper part of Dolpa district, there can be seen the hospital with basic infrastructures and very qualitative schools funded by philanthropic organizations and countries.  They look very secure and safe even though they have been living the hardest of life one can ever imagine in this barren and harsh climate.

Dolpa trekking has been enriched by the shrine of Bala Tripura Sundari Devi Mai Temple which has been believed as one of the seven powerful Goddesses. Among them one has been preserved at the top of a hill inside a temple.

This area is called Tripura Kot which is about one and half hours of walking distance from Juphal village, where the airport has been situated. In fact, there is another airstrip named Pahara (Mashinechaur) in the similar distance of Juphal village to the west of Tripura Kot whereas Juphal is to the south east of Tripura kot.


Physical Condition & Experience Requirements of Dolpa Trekking

Upper Dolpo Trek is categorized as a difficult trek. In such trek, you are likely to walk for 6-7 hours, cross steep, hilly terrain and occasional high passes of up to 5500 m. You are likely to be in a remote environment with extreme weather on some days.

You will also be facing high-altitude air with low levels of oxygen. Therefore, previous trekking experience, physical fitness and a positive attitude are essential. Exercising and jogging regularly for some weeks prior to the trip is a good idea to enhance our strength and stability.

Past hiking experience is fundamental but no technical skill is required for this trip. It is vital for participants with pre-existing medical conditions such as heart, lung, and blood diseases to consult their doctor before taking the trip. It is also advised that you inform Himalayan Glacier about your medical condition before booking the trek.


Best Time to Travel for Dolpa Trekking

Spring (March to May) and Autumn (September to October) are the best months for this trip. Since the Dolpo region lies in the rain shadow area formed by Dhaulagiri and Annapurna ranges, you can also take this trip during the Monsoon season (June to August).

Start Day of Dolpa Trekking

Arrival in Kathmandu (1300m)

Day 02 

Kathmandu: sightseeing and trek preparation

Day 03

Fly from Kathmandu to Nepalgunj (1 hour) and sightseeing in Nepalgunj

Day 04 

Fly from Nepalgunj to Juphal (45 mins Dolpo) and 30 minutes ride on the vehicle to Dunai (2,850m)

Day 05 

Dunai to Ankhe (2,896m) 5-6 hours

Day 06 

Ankhe to Sulighar 5-6 hours

Day 07 

Sulighar to Phoksundo Lake (3,611m) 4-5 hours

Day 08 

Acclimatization and rest at Phoksundo Lake

Day 09 

Trek to Phoksundo Khola 4-5 hours

Day 10 

Phoksunds Khola to Phoksundo Bhanjyang  6-7 hours

Day 11 

Phoksundo Bhanjyang to Shey Gompa (4,500m) via Kang-La pass (5,360m) 5-6 hours

Day 12 

Acclimatization and rest at Shey Gompa

Day 13 

Shey Gompa to Namduna Gaun (4,800m) via Saldang La (5,200m) 6-7 hours

Day 14 

Namduna Gaun to Saldang (3,620m) 4-5 hours

Day 15 

Saldang to Yangze Gompa (4,960m) 4-5 hours

Day 16 

Yangze Gompa to Sibu (4,560m) 6-7 hours

Day 17 

Sibu to Jeng-la Phedi (4,900m) 5-6 hours

Day 18 

Jeng-la Phedi to Tokyu Gaon (4209m) via Jeng La pass (5,090m) 5-6 hours

Day 19 

Tokyu to Dho Tarap(4,040m) 4-5 hours

Day 20 

Rest Day at Dho Tarap

Day 21 

Dho Tarap to Tarap Khola (Kamakharka) (3,800m) 6-7 hours

Day 22 

Tarap Khola to Khanigaon (3,150m) 4-5 hours

Day 23 

Khanigaon to Tarakot (2,537m) 4-5 hours

Day 24 

Tarakot to Dunai (2,140m) 5-6 hours

Day 25

Dunai to Juphal: 30 minutes on a vehicle and trek of 2-3 hours

Day 26 

Fly from Juphal to Nepalgunj and then to Kathmandu

Day 27 

Rest day in Kathmandu

Day 28 

Final departure

Things included in the package

  • We also provide you the accommodation which will be shared by two people. However, you can book for the single room with extra charge.
  • We will also bear the cost of domestic flight that will be travelled for the trip.
  • The overland transport will be held on tourist coach as per the itinerary and size of the group.
  • The applicable fee for the Trekking, National Park and Conservation center will be covered.
  • Three meals in a day includes breakfast, lunch and dinner which will be provided.
  • We offer you a welcome group dinner in an authentic Nepali restaurant with cultural show
  • The wages, meals, insurance and transport allowance of all trekking staff and porters will be arranged.
  • We also can arrange the planning for the place of interest in the city accompanied by the city guide.
  • We also have included the comprehensive medical kit and service of guide and porters.
  • We also help you to reconfirm your international flight.

Things Excluded in the package

  • pick-up/Drop from/to airport.
  • The visa fee you would have to pay for travel, medical insurance and airport tax.
  • The meals of your personal interest will not be offered in our expense.
  • We would also not provide the personal sleeping bags and bags.
  • The charge applied in case of emergency evacuation by any means of transport would not be included.
  • The charge for accommodation in Kathamndu in you early arrival before the trip will not be included and also the late departure. Moreover, the early departure from trek will also not included in our expense.
  • We also don’t include the cost of international flights.
  • The trip doesn’t offer the travel and rescue insurance.
  • We also don’t include the phone calls, laundry, bar bills, battery recharge, extra poter etc.
  • We also don’t offer tips for guides and porters.

Trek start dates

1st of every Month