The Lower Dolpo Trek

The Lower Dolpo Trek is meant for real adventurers wishing for an off-the-beaten-path experience but with less time available. The trek passes through pristine forest areas, before reaching the rugged Tarap Khola Gorge.

The Lower Dolpo Trek
The Lower Dolpo Trek

The Lower Dolpo Trek was only opened for trekking in 1990 and stands for ‘real adventure’. The trek passes through Shey-Phoksundo National Park with spectacular mountain scenery, Bon-Buddhist monasteries, and yak caravans. There is great environmental diversity, pristine wooded areas, steep-sided canyons and all set in the backdrop of the barren plateau near the Tibetan border. This is the area that was the location for Eric Valli’s Oscar-nominated film ‘Himalaya’.

During this trek in Dolpo, you will find the eye-catching Phoksundo Lake celebrated as the ornament of Dolpo. Animals like Snow leopards, rare wild cats, serow, and blue ships are famous inhabitants of the Dolpo area. Dolpo is famous for the deepest Lake Phoksundo, which is famous for the ever-changing color of the water. Surrounded by high mountains including the Dhaulagiri (White Mountain) massif to the southeast which is towering solitary splendor, rising as a giant shoulder of shining ice and snow. The natives of Dolpo mark Tibet as their origin and traditions here are as of Tibet.


Dolpo preserves one of the last loose ends of traditional Tibetan Culture. Dolpo is close to Tibet, where people emigrated from perhaps 1,000 years ago. Only a few trekkers are attracted by the Dolpo region because of the narrow and steep trail in a few places. Trekking through Dolpo ranges from an altitude of 2500 meters to 5070 meters which will be an experience that subsist on your mind for a lifetime.

The Lower Dolpo Trek: Trip Highlights

Region: Dolpo is a hidden gem in Nepal, with stunning scenery, rich culture, and few crowds. It is located in the Karnali Province of Nepal, bordering Tibet to the north.
Grade: The trek is graded as challenging, with several days spent above 4000 meters. You need to be in good physical condition and have experience trekking at high altitudes.
Time: The minimum recommended time for the trek is 17 days, but there are shorter alternatives available.
Height: The highest point on the trek is 5214 meters, so you need to be acclimatized to high altitude before starting the trek.
Style: The trek is camping-based, so you will need to be comfortable carrying your own gear and camping in the wilderness.

Itinerary for Lower Dolpo Trek

Day 1: Arrive in Kathmandu, the vibrant capital of Nepal. Settle into your hotel and adjust to the high altitude. Explore the bustling Thamel or visit historical sites like Swayambhunath Stupa and Kathmandu Durbar Square.

Day 2: Immerse yourself in Kathmandu’s rich culture. Visit museums, temples, and palaces. Get your permits and trekking gear ready for the adventure ahead.

Day 3: Take an early morning flight to Nepalgunj, the gateway to the Dolpo region. Enjoy the changing landscapes from the plane window.

Day 4: Fly to Dunai or Juphal, depending on weather conditions. Start your trek by ascending to Sulighat village (3170m), surrounded by stunning mountain scenery.

Day 5: Descend through rhododendron forests to the charming Chekpa village (2591m) nestled alongside the Barbung Khola River.

Day 6: Gradually ascend through diverse landscapes to Sandwa village (2927m), offering panoramic views of the Himalayas.

Day 7: Hike uphill to the breathtaking Phoksundo Lake (3733m). Enjoy stunning turquoise waters and the iconic Ringmo Monastery perched on a cliff.

Day 8: Spend a full day exploring the beauty of Phoksundo Lake. hike around the lake, or simply relax and soak in the views.

Day 9: Continue your trek through alpine meadows and yak pastures to Yak Kharka (3982m), with spectacular mountain panoramas.

Day 10: Ascend steeply to Bagala High Camp (4921m), passing through diverse terrain and experiencing incredible mountain vistas.

Day 11: Conquer the challenging Bagala Bhanjyang pass (5214m) and descend to Danigar (4631m), enjoying breathtaking views of the Upper Dolpo region.

Day 12: Cross the challenging Numala Pass (5238m), the highest point of the trek, and descend to Numala Base Camp (4440m) at the foot of the majestic Mt. Numala (7695m).

Day 13: Hike downhill through valleys and villages to Dho Tarap (3944m), a beautiful village with traditional Dolpo architecture.

Day 14: Descend further to Ghyamgar (3756m), enjoying vibrant local culture and stunning mountain scenery.

Day 15: Continue your descent through diverse landscapes to Chhyugar (3441m), a beautiful village surrounded by fields and mountains.

Day 16: Follow the trail along the river banks to Tarakot (2537m), a historical village with a captivating fort and impressive views.

Day 17: Descend through forests and farmland to Dunai (2317m), marking the end of your challenging trek. Celebrate your accomplishment!

Day 18: Relax and enjoy the scenery in Dunai or explore the surrounding villages.

Day 19: Fly back to Kathmandu via Nepalgunj, reflecting on the unforgettable memories of your Dolpo adventure.

I hope this detailed description helps you visualize your upcoming trek!

The Upper Dolpo Trek

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