Upper Dolpo Trek

Lying between the Tibetan plateau and the Dhaulagiri ranges, Upper Dolpo Trek is a RESTRICTED TREK that offers startling landscapes and tranquil beauty

Trip Highlight

  • Best Season: April-October (including normal monsoon periods)

    Destination: Upper Dolpo

    Duration: 21 days (18 trekking days)

    Trip Route:Juphal - Ringmo / Phoksundo Lake - SheyGompa - Saldang - DhoTarap - Dunai - Juphal

    Level of Difficulty: Challenging

    Trip Style: Camping, Teahouse/Lodge, Homestay

    Activity: High Altitude Trekking

    Max. Altitude: 4,702m

  • Walk through mystique hidden land, stunning landscapes of the Trans Himalayan Mountains, with its untouched Tibetan Buddhism and Bon Po Culture.
  • Explore dazzling holy Phoksundo Lake - the deepest lake of Nepal, with its enchanting blue and emerald colors.
  • Cross three high passes Shey La, Nagdalo La, and Jeng La of 5000 meters and above with spectacular views over the snowcapped Himalayas
  • Visit SheyGompa, the spiritual heart of Upper Dolpo
  • Sleep in authentic, Buddhist villages and camp in amazing spots amidst the snow-capped mountains
  • Views of silver shining snow peaks including Kanjiriba north (6883m), Kanjiriba south (6861m), Dhaulagiri I (8167m), also, ChurenHimal (7381m).

Upper Dolpo Trek

Experience the splendor rugged beauty of Upper Dolpo, inhabited by the Buddhist and Bon cults that resemble the ones of Roof of the world- Tibet!

Lying between the Tibetan plateau and the Dhaulagiri ranges, Upper Dolpo Trek is a restricted trek that offers startling landscapes and tranquil beauty. Captivating SheyPhoksundo Lake, isolated villages of Ringmo, and the centuries-old monasteries make it a standout amongst the most awesome treks in the Himalaya. Only a few globetrotters have reached to the heart of Dolpo, a region adorably portrayed in Eric Valli's excellent film - 'Himalaya, Caravan'. Secluded by the strenuous terrain, the ethnic group living in this region have preserved their customs and tradition; remaining almost unblemished by the trappings of modern society. The distinctive hospitality not only have enraptured many trekkers but it has been fondest and a lifetime experience for many.

Upper Dolpo Trek is for the real adventures wishing for an off the beaten path experience. Firstly you have to get to Nepalgunj, on the plane, and then to Juphal located in Dolpo district. It isn’t feasible to fly straightly to Juphal from Kathmandu, although high-priced charter flights can be arranged from Pokhara. Basically, the airport at Juphal is no more than a tiny mountain airstrip, where bad weather can often delay flights. The trek then follows remote and rugged protected area, with admiring the beautiful rain shadow landscape of the Himalayas. You have to cross three high passes, The Shey La (5010 m), Kang La/ Ngadra La (5350 m), and Jeng La (5110 m). You can hear a prayer flag fluttering at the top of the pass. Eventually, these crossings require lengthy climbs and long descents.

The spiritual heart of this trek is visiting 'Crystal Mountain' and the several 11th-century unique monasteries (gompas) like SheyGompa; which is an important pilgrimage site for Tibetans. Crystal Mountain is visited by hundreds of traveler each year. They make a circuit of the Crystal Mountain, Upper Dolpo own version of Mount Kailash. The people that reside here, only a few hundred and are the world’s highest dwellers. Being the region of Nepal people of this region mostly speak Tibetan languages and can rarely understand the Nepali language. On the way, you’ll experience small but unique authentic villages. The region preserves one of the last remains of traditional Tibetan culture where the pre-Buddhist Bon-Po religion is still in practice.

Tourism infrastructure in Upper Dolpo is not what it is in much of Nepal it is required to camp. There are (basic) guest houses in Juphal, Dunai, Kageni, Chhepka, close to Sanduwa, Ringmo, Shey, Saldang, Dho, and Lingdo. At the other places, you have to camp. You will experience native locals living based on farming and animal husbandry. It seems like time has stood still here for centuries as inhabitants of Tibetan stock continue to pursue and trade; the way they have done for hundreds of years. Their living is not easy yet what they lack in material goods, they have in spiritual wealth.

The relatively difficult trekking passes and high trekking permit fee, limit the number of adventurers that visit Upper Dolpo, making this trek a very exceptional, and exclusive experience. The trip can be shortened or extended depending on how many hours of walking you fit into your days. Besides, you stay above 4000 meters for a long time, on very cold nights. But the turquoise blue Shey- Phoksundo Lake, unforgettable landscapes, steep bold rocks, yak caravan, the views from the passes and the contacts with a very special untouched culture make it all worth it.  

Upper Dolpo Trek Permit and Price

If you are specifically looking for a less-touristy experience, with close interaction with the locals then Upper Dolpo Trek might be a right choice for you. However, the permit is issued only to groups. Individual trekkers will not be issued Upper Dolpo trekking permit. The trekking permit can be obtained from the department of immigration, Kalikasthan, Kathmandu, Nepal. Areas of Upper Dolpa for the first 10 days US$ 500 per person and after 10 days US$ 50 per day person or equivalent foreign currency. Areas of Lower Dolpo Per week per person US$ 10 or equivalent convertible foreign currency.

Best Season (Upper Dolpo Trek)

The route lingers above 4000 m for long periods of time which results in very cold nights. However, the best time to visit Dolpo is the spring (April to May) and the fall (October to November), including normal monsoon periods as it lies in the rain shadow. Weather is mostly clear during spring and the temperature is moderate with minimal chance of snow at high altitudes. So, you get to see beautiful views without any obstruction. Late/early snow can affect this trek in April and November, making some passes impossible to cross. During monsoon, keep in mind that travel to and from the trailhead can be interrupted by bad weather in the lowlands. Thus, give yourself an extra day or two on both ends of your trip to accommodate flight cancellations and road blockage. It's better to check about the trek with a local tour operator if lodges and passes are open as this will depend on weather conditions.



  • Day 01 Arrive Kathmandu (1,300m/4,264 ft)
  • Day 02 Kathmandu valley sightseeing & trek preparation (1,300m/4,264 ft)
  • Day 03 Fly from Kathmandu - Nepalgunj & Transfer to Hotel.
  • Day 04 Fly from Nepalgunj to Juphal (2320m/7601ft) & trek to Sulighat (2070m/6790ft) 2-3 hrs.
  • Day 05 Sulighat – Renje (3010m/9873ft), 5-6 hrs trek.
  • Day 06 Renje – Ringmo village(3640m/11940ft) –Phoksundo Lake (3620m/11874ft) 5-6 hrs trek.
  • Day 07 Rest day in Phoksundo Lake and explore around Ringmo village.
  • Day 08 Phoksundo lake - Phoksundo Khola (3630m/1190ft), 4-5 hrs
  • Day 09 Phoksundo Khola - Phoksundo Bhanjyang (4120m/13514ft) 6-7 hrs
  • Day 10 Phoksundo Bhanjyang - Kang-La pass (5160m/16925ft) – Shey gompa (4390m/14400ft) 5-6 hrs
  • Day 11 Rest day at Shey Gompa the crystal monastery
  • Day 12 Shey gompa – Saldang La (5010m/16432ft) - Namgung village(4430m/14530), 6-7 hrs
  • Day 13 Namgung village - Saldang (3620m/11,874ft) 4-5 hours
  • Day 14 Saldang - Yangze Gompa (4960m/16267ft) 4-5 hrs
  • Day 15 Yange Gompa - Sibu (4560m/14957ft) 6-7 hrs
  • Day 16 Sibu – Jeng La Phedi (4900m/16072ft) 5-6 hrs
  • Day 17 Jeng La Phedi – Jeng La pass (5090m/16695ft) – Do Tarap (4080m/13382ft)6-7 hrs
  • Day 18 Day explore and acclimatization in Do Tarap.
  • Day 19 Do Tarap - Tarap Khola ( Karmakharka) 3800m/12464ft, 6-7 hrs
  • Day 20 Tarap Khola – Khanigaon (3150m/10332ft)5-6 hrs
  • Day 21 Khani Gaun – Tarakot (2537m/8321ft) – Dunai (2030m/6658ft) 5-6 hrs
  • Day 22 Dunai - Jhuphal (2320m/7610ft) 2-3 hrs
  • Day 23 Fly from Jhuphal to Nepalgunj to Kathmandu
  • Day 24 DepartureTransfer to international airport and fly to onward destination.


  • All airport transfers
  • 3 star Hotel in Kathmandu for 3 nights with break fase
  • City tour by private transport
  • All necessary paper work and permits (Upper Dolpa Restricted Area Permit)
  • 2 star Hotel for one night in Nepalgunj 
  • Full meals: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner on your choice
  • Supplementary snacks: energy  bar and cookies
  • Seasonal fresh fruits deserts every day
  • All mountain accommodation in tent 
  • Unlimited Chlorine treated Safe Drinking water
  • flight Kathmandu-Nepalgunj-Juphal-Nepalgunj-Kathmandu
  • An experienced English-speaking Govt. registered trekking guide trekking cook, assistant trekking guide, kitchen boy and Sherpa porters to carry luggages, food and camping equipment (1 trekker: 3 porters)
  • Guide, cook and support staffs salary, insurance, equipment, flight, food and lodging
  • A comprehensive First Aid kit
  • All government and local taxes
  • Trekking equipment: down filled sleeping bag, walking poles and duffel bag


  • Lunch & Dinner in Kathmandu
  • Hot  and bottle drinks
  • Hot shower
  • City monument fees
  • Electronic device re-charge
  • Wi- Fi
  • Travel insurance and medical evacuation
  • Tipping 

Date & Price

Oct 2018

Trip Start Date Trip End Date Price Status
2018-10-01 2018-10-25 fixed Book Now

Sep 2018

Trip Start Date Trip End Date Price Status
2018-09-05 2018-09-29 available Book Now

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Dates & Prices represent most of our offerings which are subject to change accordingly to our subjected terms. Our every trip packages have dates & prices which follow flexibility to get modified/changed as per our clients desire which also include changes in the itinerary and the trip schedules. Along with that, our prices can also be adjusted if the trip bookings are made by a group with considerable number of people.

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