Lower Dolpo Trek is one of the most adventurous ventures into the wild and remote nature of Dolpo region which is full of natural wonders. These wonders are: massive freshwater lakes, age-old Buddhist civilization and culture, awe-inspiring arid landscapes, historical forts, local villages, unspoiled trekking trails and green hills, protected areas and its serene surrounding with diverse species of floras and faunas and most importantly, the breathtaking mountain views. These charms of nature will, inarguably, stun you during your Lower Dolpo Trek.
More specifically, passing through Juphal via Nepaljung, exploring the pre-Buddhism Bon Po culture, pacing via arid landscapes of Lower Dolpo region, alpine meadows and deep woods of Shey Phoksundo National Park with some of the rare species of flora and fauna including snow leopard, Himalayan musk deer, blue sheep, wild buffaloes and so on will be very fascinating to experience during Lower Dolpo Trek.
Moreover, traversing through two high passes above 5000m: Numa La Pass (5309m), the highest point of the trek, and Baga La Pass (5169m) will let the trekkers experience an absolute thrills of adventure with fabulous mountain views of Mt. Dhaulagiri (8167m) and the Tibetan ranges—Kugung La and Khyung La.
Phoksundo Lake is another prime highlight of Lower Dolpo Trek. The turquoise freshwater lake located in the lap of Himalayas in Shey Phoksundo National Park provides an authentic opportunity to celebrate the bliss of being solitude into the wild nature.
The local people especially Tibetan, their day-to day activities, the herd of yaks and sheep heading towards destinations, combination between brown setting of the landscapes and mountain panorama, holy ancient monasteries let the trekkers feel that they are in different kingdom of the world completely isolated from others.
So, Lower Dolpo Trek is very popular among the travelers as an adventure and less crowded area trekking in restricted area of Nepal’s Himalayas bordering to Tibet. One also can experience the blended culture of Nepal and Tibet which is mostly based on Tibetan Bon-Po.
What is the best time of the year for Lower Dolpo Trek? Definitely, this query will be very common and mandatory to be raised beforehand venturing on the trail because one must know the best weather/time of the year so that they can make their Lower Dolpo Trek a memorable and can accomplish comfortably. The best time to travel to Lower Dolpo Region and Shey Phoksundo National Park Area is between Sep-Nov. These months in Nepal not only offer best time for Lower Dolpo Trek but they also are the finest times of the year for trekking, hiking and all types of jeep tours. The temperature is mild, the region and the trail receives no rain and snowfall and the mountain breathtaking during the months September, October and November.
Similarly, people who are willing to travel to Dolpo region can find the months March, April and May equally beautiful as September, October and November. The flowering rhododendron, birch, juniper and other flowering and non-flowering plants in Shey Pokhsundo National Park make the trail and entire trek more enchanting during the trek.
Travelers need to collect three different types of Permits for Lower Dolpo Trek. These are: TIMS Card, Shey Phoksundo National Park Entry Permit and Dolpo Restricted Area Entry Permit. If you have time and idea to visit Nepal Tourism Boar Office, you can collect these permits on your own, or, you can ask your travel operator to collect them for you. Unless you obtain all these required permits, you cannot make your Lower Dolpo Trek.
The food and accommodation you are using during the tour will be provided by local lodges/teahouses. They have their own menus and offer what they can prepare for the visitors.
You will get to have Nepali, Asian, Indian, Some Chinese, Continental and Some Japanese items of foods on the way to Phoksundo Lake and two high passes (Numa La Pass (5309m), the highest point of the trek, and Baga La Pass (5169m) and back to Kathmandu. They also offer you some fresh and authentic local dishes which you can enjoy.
You will be using the accommodation on the twin sharing basis. Further, you will be spending the nights at local lodges/homestays. Don’t expect to enjoy luxury accommodation with suite rooms like you do enjoy in cities.
Lower Dolpo Trek is an adventure trekking in a remote area of Nepal in Dolpo region encompassing Shey Phoksundo. Actually, trekking above 5000m high is considered as a challenging or an adventure trekking. Similarly, the two highest elevations the trekkers will get during the trek are: Numa La Pass (5309m), the highest point of the trek, and Baga La Pass (5169m).
There are no such technical rocky and slippery trails on the way to Numa La Pass (5309m), the highest point of the trek, Baga La Pass (5169m) and Phoksundo Lake. However, if it rainy and snowy, the ascends and the descends tend to be more challenging.
So, those who have prior experience of some easy and moderate hiking/trekking in the hills up to 4000m and above, going ups and downs, who are doing regular exercises like aerobics and jogging and those who have the stamina of walking 7-8 hours in higher elevation like above 4000m can do Lower Dolpo Trek. Therefore, one requires preparing accordingly. Prepare with all required trekking equipment as people for an adventure trekking above 5000m.
Juphal is the trailhead of Lower Dolpo Trek. To get from Kathmandu, we have to take a domestic flight for 50 minutes to Nepaljung and then another short flight for 20 minutes from Nepaljung to get Jufal. As we arrive at Juphal airport located in Dolpa district in Karnali province, we head for Dunnai commencing our formal walk to higher elevation.
We do the same while returning back to Kathmandu from Juphal and Nepaljung. We take a short flight to Nepaljung from Juphal and and then to Kathmandu to end our Lower Dolpo Trek.
Actually, yes, there are a few cases of sickness of higher altitude during Lower Dolpo Trek. So, we get the elevation gradually by ascending with the proper pacing. We have an acclimatization day at Phoksumdo (3641m./11945ft.) beforehand ascending up to the two high passes: to Numa La Pass (5309m), the highest point of the trek, Baga La Pass (5169m). This acclimatization is much needed because it is mandatory to have acclimatization properly before ascending above 5000m. If you ascend quickly while trekking in the mountain, there is high possibility of getting acute altitude sickness.
We have set this Lower Dolpo Trek Itinerary with a day for acclimatization. If you want to add another day for acclimatization, we will set Lower Dolpo Trekking Itinerary accordingly.
Yes, there are some cases of altitude or acute mountain sickness with the trekkers every year while doing Lower Dolpo Trekking. Then, what happen to them? They are evacuated safely or made okay with some first aids taking them to the lower elevation. Acute mountain sickness is sudden so that one has to adopt some important precautions:
You can simply install local Nepali SIM card in your cell phone and take it to the mountain. You can also buy data pack to run internet on the trail. In fact, for some days at higher elevation, it may not work, but, it will help you a lot during the trek. You can buy either NT or NCELL Sim car and install call and internet on your phone. It will take no more than Rs.100 for you to get it.
You can also have the access of internet or Wi Fi on the trail at local lodges/teahouses. They may charge you Rs. 200-500 per password or per device. Few years back, there wouldn’t be these facilities on the trail and in the teahouses during Lower Dolpo Trekking.
You can even talk to your family, relatives and the friends from the Lower Dolpo Trekking Trail very easily and can share your images and the videos instantly these days.
However, you may not have good strength of phone, Wifi and internet in case of cloudy and snowy weathers at higher altitude.
No. Solo independent traveler cannot do Lower Dolpo Trekking on his/her own. No solo traveler is permitted to do trekking in any area in Nepal by the government. But, it doesn’t mean that, single traveler cannot do this trek; one has to hire either a guide or a porter. Also, the group has to be accompanied at least a licensed guide during the trek. It means, without hiring an authorized and licensed guide, the group is not allowed to go on Lower Dolpo Trekking Trail. This is because of security issue during the trip since the trekking trail is located at the border between Nepal and Tibet . And most importantly, Lower Dolpo trekking is a restricted area trekking and has to obtain special/ restricted area trekking permit to do this trek.
You can arrive in Kathmandu via any international flight that people recommend for you. Optionally, you can take a drive if you are using road to enter Nepal. You can use Indian and Chinese border for this. Whatever way you use for arriving in Kathmandu, our representative will receive you and takes you to the hotel. The representative will let you know about the short orientation meeting regarding your Lower Dolpo Trekking. Since we do not have any scheduled activities to do for today, you just rest and relax at the hotel or take a short walk around the city if time favors you.
Today, largely, you will spend your time with astonishing UNESCO World Heritage Sites located in Kathmandu. You will go to explore them one by one after your breakfast. The private vehicle will come to receive you along with a professional and experienced city guide at the hotel where your stay and transfer you to the historical and religious sites which includes Swyombhunath Stupa( Monkey Temple), Patan Durbar Square, Bouddhanath Stupa and Pashupatinath Temple. You end this trip at around between 3-4 pm and prepare well for your Lower Dolpo Trekking. Or, you can choose not to do Kathmandu Sightseeing Tour.
You are taking a short domestic flight from Kathmandu to Nepaljung. Sometimes, the flight to Neplajung may get disturbed due to bad weather condition. Otherwise, the flight will be very scenic and mesmerizing with incredible mountain views.
Take another short flight to Jufal airport and begin formal walk to Dunai with your trekking crew. Actually, this is an easy walk today. Walk down to Kalagauda and pass through incredible landscapes and green hills before you arrive at Dunai. Arrive at Dunai and stay overnight at local lodge.
Begin your trek after a beautiful breakfast at the lodge. Walk via Ringmo and arrive at Chhepka. You will get an elevation of 700m today. Stay overnight at local lodge at Chhepka.
This is a flat walk through incredible landscapes viewing some magnificent mountain panoramas. You will get an elevation of 100m today and stay overnight at local lodge at Samduwa.
You walk past a couple of ascents and descents through dry and arid landscapes with some alpine floras. Now you are heading towards a mesmerizing freshwater lake, Phoksundo Lake. You will astonish at seeing this green-purple colored lake once you arrive at the lakeside. Stay overnight at local lodge at Phoksundo.
This is an acclimatization day before ascending to the two higher passes of the trek. During this acclimatization, you will walk around the giant Phoksundo Lake and explore it. Moreover, you will also visit Bon Monastery of Tshowa which stands there from medieval time. Kanjiroba mountain panorama also can be seen from the lake. You can relax and have rest at the lodge rest of the time. Stay overnight at local lodge at Phoksundo.
You will have an ascent to Yak Kharka from Phoksundo Lake. You will ascend around 200m today through magnificent landscapes fo Mustang district. Yak Kharka is popular for keeping yaks and sheep. This section of walk today may offer you an opportunity to spot snow leopard too. Arrive at Yak Kharka and stay overnight at local lodge.
Ascend up to the Bagala Base Camp and then to Bagala High Camp. While ascending up to High Camp from Base Camp, the trail gets steeper and more challenging today. Arrive at Bagala High Camp and stay overnight at local lodge.
Walk up to the apex of Bagala Pass, astonish at incredible mountain peaks in Nepali and Tibetan sides, spend some time there and walk down to Danigar. Stay overnight at Danigar at local lodge.
Waking up early you steadily climb to the summit of Numala and cross it. You will experience an adventure of thrills and magnificent mountain panorama upon this ascent which is the highest pass of this trek. You will spend here at the top for mountain views and the thrills of adventure and walk down to Tokyu. Stay overnight at local lodge at Tokyu.
Walk passing through mani walls and colorful prayer flags which will be beautiful to experience on this section of walk. You will also view some fabulous mountain views in both Nepal and Tibetan sides. You will gradually descend to Dho-Tarap region and finally get to the settlement of Dho-Tarap. Stay overnight at local lodge at Dho.
Now, we are returning back to Dunai and Jufal gradually. We descend through beautiful topography and mountain setting to Ghyamghar from Dho- Tarap and stay overnight at local lodge at Ghyamghar.
Walk down to Chhedhel Gompa from Ghyamghar. Chhedhel Gompa is very popular school of Buddhism which is consider to be standing there from16th century located in Mustang District. You can walk around the Gompa and explore it. Stay overnight at local lodge at Chhedhel Gompa.
Descend down via magnificent landscapes and some forested areas losing the altitude of around 800m to the village Lawan. Arrive at Lawan and Stay overnight at local lodge.
This is the second last day walk of Lower Dolpo Trek. Follow same trail as you used before while approaching Dunai. Arrive at Dunai and stay overnight at local lodge.
You will have an ascent today from Dunai to Jufal airport. Pass through magnificent mountain landscapes before you aarive at Jufal. Arrive at Jufal and wait for the flight to Nepaljung.
You will take an early flight to Nepaljung from Jufal and then to Kathmandu. Arrive at hotel and check in. Go for a cultural farewell dinner in the evening with our team.
We drop you to the Kathmandu airport on time so that you can catch up your international flight homewards or can begin another trip to other destinations.
All set dates are guaranteed departures. If the following dates are not suitable for your travel plans then contact us for your custom trip dates. The private trips are available on any date of your selection at any time of the year.