Trip Details

  • Destination: Nepal
  • Trip Difficulty: Technical Challenging
  • Trip Style: Camping Trek
  • Transport: Private Vehicle & Flight
  • Food: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
  • Accommodation: Lodge & Camping
  • Group Size: 16
  • Max Elevation: Nangdala pass (5240m)

Highlights

  • Very few trekkers ever see Upper Dolpo Trek through parts of Nepal.
  • Visit Shey Gompa Monastery
  • Explore the  Monasteries of the base of Crystal Mountain
  • Commemorate in Peter Matthiessen's "The Snow Leopard."
  • The Shey Phoksundo National Park, one of the highest animal concentrations in the world.
  • Go through thrilling High passes; Khang La, Saldang La, and others.
  • Desert and landscape and striking valleys such as Dho, Tarakot, and  Saldang.
  • Views of Dhaulagiri and Tibetan peaks.
     

Description

Upper Dolpo to Jomsom trek is one of the difficult but enjoyable and remote trekking routes of Nepal. This trek is for those who love adventure and do not mind getting lost in the wilderness of the Himalaya. The trails here are quiet and sometimes without the human settlement. Thus you can get a thrilling experience of trekking in remote areas.

Upper Dolpo is surrounded by massive peaks including the Dhaulagiri. This region of mid-West Nepal takes you to the freezing settlement of legendary Shey Monastery beyond Phoksundo Lake. The lake has turquoise blue colored water.  It is surrounded by dense forest and snow-capped mountains.

In Upper Dolpo, the Pre Buddhist religion called Bon- Po is practiced. This region has preserved its ancient religion even after the extensive spreading of Buddhism. The region protects one of the last leftovers of traditional Tibetan culture.

The Dolpo people settle at altitudes of 3,660 m to 4,070 m and these are one of the highest settlements in the world. There are 130 gompas in Dolpa which speak volumes for the religious nature of its inhabitants.

The upper Dolpo to Jomsom trek begins with air-flight to Nepalgunj ending at traditional Juphal village. Juphal village is the entry point to the Dolpo region. Passing through the rusty roads, farming lands and traditional villages you will follow the trekking trail to Shey Phoksundo Lake. You will get boarded on nearby lodges for resting after reaching the Shey Phoksundo Lake region. 

Later you will do the sightseeing at Shey Phoksundo Lake and follow the trekking trail towards Shey Gompa. The Shey Gompa lies at Saldang village of 2km which is the traditional village of Bonpo sect. Passing the Shey Gompa you will walk towards the Shey La Pass and then towards Yak Kharka. Walking past the Yak Kharka, you reach Mola Pass located at 5030m.

You will follow the trekking trail of the Trans Himalaya trade and reach Niwa La Pass. It is located at 5120m. Then you will finally descend your way back to Jomsom. After the trek, you will drive your way back to Pokhara and take air-flight to Kathmandu.

Lastly, You can also extend the trek as your schedule. This is the full itinerary of Upper Dolpo to Jomsom Trek. We can change the routes according to your choices. Mount Mania provides you with a complete plan of your trek and takes you through a hassle-free journey.

Itinerary

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This is the first day of your tour. Today we will have a scenic flight from Kathmandu to Nepalgunj. Our representative will receive you at the airport and you will be taken to your hotel.

Flight Duration: 45 minutes

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
  • Accommodation: Hotel
  • Place: Nepalgunj
  • Altitude: 150m

It’s a 35-mins flight from Nepalgunj to Juphal. Our Upper Dolpo to Jomsom trek starts on this day. It's an easy trail where you can see Thuli Bheri River, Riverside, landscapes, Monasteries, etc. We reach Dunai which is a small yet beautiful town. Overnight at Dunai.

Trek Duration: 3 hours 

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
  • Accommodation: Camping
  • Place: Dunai
  • Altitude: 2850m

After breakfast, we will gradually move on the trail of Dolpo via Sulighar. This route is quite beautiful and comfortable to walk. After some documents formalities, we now move inside the Shey Phoksundo National Park. We trek through the isolated villages, lush green vegetation, and suspension bridge. We can also get a chance of learning the culture and traditions of the people residing there. Overnight at Chhepka.

Trek Duration: 5-6 hours 

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
  • Accommodation: Camping
  • Place: Chhepka
  • Altitude: 2687m

Today we trek towards Lower Dolpo area. We cross through the suspension bridge where we can see the beautiful Phoksundo Khola. We pass on through Kharka and then towards Rechi. Further walking we arrive at Chunuwar. Overnight stay at Chunuwar.

Trek Duration: 5-6 hours 

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
  • Accommodation: Camping
  • Place: Chunuwar
  • Altitude: 3110m

After a warm breakfast, we follow the Trail of Phoksundo Lake. We can have a chance to see the varied landscapes, Mani Walls, Chorten, Bon Po Culture, vegetations on the way. Then we finally reach Phoksundo Lake. The Mesmerizing Lake makes you feel relief your all pain and stress.

Trek Duration: 5-6 hours 

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
  • Accommodation: Camping
  • Place: Phoksundo Lake
  • Altitude: 3600m

After breakfast, we spend the time to explore the lake, the major attraction of this trek. Along with the exploration of the Ringmo village, we will also pay a visit to Tshowa monastery. It is situated on the top of a ridge above the turquoise lake. Tshowa monastery is more than 900 years old and is quite remarkable. 

We drop down to Phoksundo Lake along steep cliffs. The lake is famous for its gorgeous turquoise color and incredible scenery. Besides that, we will also explore some settlements. We will experience Bon-Po culture and local traditions interacting with the Dolpo people.

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
  • Accommodation: Camping
  • Place: Phoksundo Lake
  • Altitude: 3600m

After breakfast, we move on to trek from Dolpo to Mustang, it's one of the best trekking trails. It takes around 6 hours to reach Sallaghari from Phoksundo. It goes along the mesmerizing cliffs, landscapes, pine forest and chit chat with locals. Overnight at Sallaghari (the beautiful pine forest).

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
  • Accommodation: Camping
  • Place: Sallaghari
  • Altitude: 3630m

After breakfast, we continue our trek to Nangdala High Camp located at 4717m. The trail leads us to the opposite side of the Tuk Kyaksa River. We walk along the suspension bridge and reach towards Nangdala High Camp for overnight.

Trek Duration: 5-6 hours

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
  • Accommodation: Camping
  • Place: Nangdala
  • Altitude: 4717m

Today we trek towards the most beautiful peak of Dolpo. We walk towards the mystical land and reach to the top of Nangdala Pass (5240m). It is a 5-6 hours walk from Nangdala. As soon as you reach the top the view will mesmerize you through its beauty. You can see the different landscapes, vegetation, Chorten, peaks like Kang Chunne and Shey Shikhar. Camp at Shey Gompa.

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
  • Accommodation: Camping
  • Place: Shey Gompa
  • Altitude: 4280m

After a warm breakfast, we will explore Shey Gompa then we follow the trail beside Sephu Khola. You can see the barren and enhancing the land of Dolpo.

After some exploration, we then trek up to Shey La Pass (5100m) where you can have the views of Kanjiroba, Tibet, Mustang to East and crystal mountains. After some walk, we then reach Namgung.

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
  • Accommodation: Camping
  • Place: Namgung Gompa
  • Altitude: 4360m

After breakfast, we hike down to Saldang. You will reach Saldang after 4 to 5 hours of walk. You can witness the dry land with different vegetation. You can also have an opportunity to talk with the locals and share their culture and traditions.

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
  • Accommodation: Camping
  • Place: Saldang
  • Altitude: 3770m

After breakfast, we head towards the Yanjer Gompa which is truly mesmerizing. We then move back to Saldang after exploring the gumba. Overnight in Yangjer Gumba.

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
  • Accommodation: Camping
  • Place: Saldang
  • Altitude: 3770m

We will trek for 5-6hrs to reach Komas. On our trail, we pass on through Khom La, 4500m and then towards Khomas Village (a beautiful varied cultural village). Overnight at Khoma village.

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
  • Accommodation: Camping
  • Place: Khoma Village
  • Altitude: 4060m

After breakfast, we gradually move towards Shimen. On the way, you may see the wild species such as Snow Leopard and Blue Sheep. We pass on through the Shimen La (4260m) and then hike towards Shimen.

Trek Duration: 5-6 hours

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
  • Accommodation: Camping
  • Place: Shimen
  • Altitude: 3850m

After a warm breakfast, we move towards Tinje, a beautiful valley. We will walk along the side of Panjyang Khola and look over the beautiful villages and Monasteries along the way to Tinje. Overnight at Tinje.

Trek Duration: 5-6 hours

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
  • Accommodation: Camping
  • Place: Tinje
  • Altitude: 4110m

Today we trek towards Yak Kharka. Yak Kharka is grazing ground for Sheep and Yak. Overnight in Yak Kharka.

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
  • Accommodation: Camping
  • Place: Yak Kharka

After breakfast, we trek towards Chharka by crossing the Mola Pass (5030m). It is a 5-hour walk from Yak Kharka. We can explore the local culture and Bon Monasteries in Chharka. Overnight in Chharka.

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
  • Accommodation: Camping
  • Place: Chharka
  • Altitude: 4300m

We trek towards the high land today. Crossing the hills with the beautiful views of the surroundings we trek up to Norbulung. Overnight at Norbulung.

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
  • Accommodation: Camping
  • Place: Norbulung
  • Altitude: 4980m

After breakfast, we move on towards Ghaldang Ghuldum located at 4247m. The trail takes you through Niwa La Pass (5120) and Jungbenla Pass (5550). Going to Jungbenla Pass is the highest elevation we will go through in our Upper Dolpo to Jomsom trek. 

You can have ample opportunity to see the different surroundings with different vegetation. And know more about the lifestyle and livelihood of people residing here. Overnight.

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
  • Accommodation: Camping
  • Place: Ghalden Ghuldum
  • Altitude: 4247m

After breakfast, we move up and down to reach Sangta. Sangta is an isolated village that provides a mesmerizing view of the rain shadow area and different landscapes. It is located at an elevation of 3777m. Overnight at Sangta Village.

Trek Duration: 5-6 hours

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
  • Accommodation: Camping
  • Place: Sangta
  • Altitude: 3777m

Today we trek up the hill behind Santa after crossing nine ridges. Then we descend towards Kali Gandaki Valley. You can see the beautiful varied landscape as well as high cliffs on your way. Then after some walk, we reach towards the large village of Phalyak located at 3175m. Overnight.

Trek Duration: 5-6 hours

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
  • Accommodation: Camping
  • Place: Phalyak
  • Altitude: 3175m

After a warm breakfast, we hike towards the trail that passes on by the loose rocks and challenging trail. This is the last day of your Upper Dolpo to Jomsom trek. We finally reach Jomsom and enjoy our time there. Jomsom is one of the famous destinations for tourists.

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
  • Accommodation: Teahouse
  • Place: Jomsom
  • Altitude: 2720m

Today, we will have a scenic flight from Jomsom to Pokhara. Our representative will pick you up and escort you towards the hotel. During day time, you can stroll around Lakeside of Pokhara and get a release from the pain by visiting a spa or massage center. Overnight at the hotel.

  • Meals: Bed & Breakfast
  • Accommodation: Hotel
  • Place: Pokhara
  • Altitude: 820m

Today, we will have a scenic flight from Pokhara to Kathmandu. Our representative will pick you up and escort you towards the hotel. During day time, you can stroll around Thamel. In the evening, farewell dinner with a team by enjoying a cultural show. Overnight at the hotel.

  • Place: Kathmandu
  • Altitude: 1320m

What to Expect

  • Airport Pickup and Drop (Domestic Terminal)
  • Camping and Teahouse accommodation during the trek
  • Three meals a day (Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner) during the trek
  • Hotel in Pokhara (Bed & Breakfast)
  • Flight Ticket (Kathmandu to Nepalgunj to Jhuphal)
  • Flight Ticket (Jomsom to Pokhara to Kathmandu)
  • English Speaking Trekking Guide with Insurance, Transportation, Food and Accommodation
  • Porter with Insurance, Transportation, Food, and Accommodation
  • Cooking Staff and Helper 
  • All Camping equipment like Tents and Kitchen equipment
  • All Necessary Trekking Permits (Upper Dolpo Special Permit, Shey Phoksundo National Park, ACAP)
  • Daily seasonal fresh fruits after dinner 
  • A first aid kit carried by the guide (Oximeter to measure your oxygen and pulse in high altitude) 
  • All Government and Local taxes
  • International Flight Ticket and Nepalese Visa Fee
  • Hotel in Kathmandu
  • Meals in Kathmandu and Pokhara
  • Extra night accommodation in case of early arrival, late departure, and early return from the trek (due to any reason) than the scheduled itinerary
  • Personal expenses (Wifi, Phone calls, Laundry, Bar bills, Battery Recharge, Water, Shower, and Tea / Coffee)
  • Other costs not mentioned in 'Cost Includes' section
  • Travel and Rescue Insurance
  • Tips for Guides, Porters, and Helpers

PRICES & DATES

Trip DatesAvailabilityPrice  
06 Mar, 2020 - 29 Mar, 2020AvailableUS$4500
13 Mar, 2020 - 05 Apr, 2020AvailableUS$4500
20 Mar, 2020 - 12 Apr, 2020AvailableUS$4500
27 Mar, 2020 - 19 Apr, 2020AvailableUS$4500

Useful Information

How is the Food and Accommodation in Upper Dolpo to Jomsom Trek?

The treks in Upper Dolpo are fully-catered camping. As it is a remote region the given accommodation and food supplies are hard to come by the trail. Some basic teahouse/lodge accommodation is available in some villages, but shouldn’t be relied upon.

Upper Dolpo is known to have food shortages. It is advised to take as many food provisions when trekking in Upper Dolpo. This is applicable anywhere in Western Nepal. If you go in an organized trek, your food needs will be taken care of by us.

What makes the Upper Dolpo to Jomsom Trek Difficult?

Trek Duration

The length of the trek will depend upon the routes you take. Trekking in Upper Dolpo is considered to be very difficult. The total duration of the trek is 23 days. And you might have to walk more than 6 to 7 hours per day. So you much at least add 2 to 3 acclimatization days during the whole trek.

Weather and Temperature

With elevations ranging from 2,500m at Jhupal to 5,000m, the temperatures vary widely during the standard 3 week trek period. During the best trekking seasons, the temperatures will range from around -10C on the high passes to around 14C at lower altitudes.  

There is no rain during the monsoon season because Upper Dolpo lies in a rain shadow and being a desert landscape. But, during this season there may be flight cancellations/delays due to bad weather conditions at Nepalgunj. 

If you are thinking of trekking in the winter – forget it!  Regardless of how experienced you are at snow trekking at high altitudes, the passes will be closed as well as some of the trails.  We do not recommend to trek in this region from December till the end of February.

Altitude Sickness 

The Upper Dolpo to Jomsom Trek falls on a high altitude trek. You will be at altitudes higher than 4,000m on many days and several nights. You will also reach to a couple of very high passes at over 5,000m. In general, the risk from altitude starts at elevations over 2,500m to 3000m. Thus it is very important to acclimatize in this trek. 

No one knows who will suffer from altitude sickness.  So always stay hydrated and go slow. If you do so, you will reduce the chances of serious altitude problems. 

Below are some of the early symptoms of altitude-related problems.  Most of the symptoms will go with the correct treatment.  But if you ignore them they will increase and develop into more serious, possibly fatal, altitude sickness.  

  • Feelings of uneasiness
  • Breathing difficulties
  • Intense headaches
  • Increased heart rates
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Light-headedness
  • Difficulty sleeping

When to Go for Trek?

Spring that falls in March to May and autumn i.e September to November are considered as the perfect season for Upper Dolpo to Jomsom Trek. You will get to trek in a clear atmosphere. The appropriate temperature makes the trek easier than in other seasons.  

The trails at the period of monsoon season i.e. June to August is particularly hazardous and unsafe because of over precipitation. There are chances of landslides and the flights might get canceled due to heavy rainfall. 

The thick fogs and heavy snowfall in the winter season i.e December to February make the trek difficult.

Permits and Regulations

Permits for Upper Dolpo are expensive and the rules are strictly enforced. You need to buy a permit for Lower Dolpo, which you pass through on your way to Upper Dolpo.

Only 250 foreigners get the permit to enter Upper Dolpo each year.

  • Lower Dolpo Permit Cost: $10 USD per week
  • Upper Dolpo Permit Cost: $50 USD per day (10-day minimum)

There is also an entry fee to the Shey-Phoksundo National Park. The cost to enter the Park is Rs. 1000. It is compulsory to trek with a guide on an organized tour in Upper Dolpo. Your tour operator will arrange all the permits. The permit fees are generally included in the total cost of your trip.