Lower Dolpo Trekking and Cultural Tour

21 Days

Dates

TRIP DATES AVAILABILITY PRICE SPACE LEFT
October 4, 2022 - October 24, 2022 Available $4,325
10 Available
November 4, 2022 - November 24, 2022 Available $4,325
10 Available

Tour Summary

Explore the majestic high altitude Phoksundo lake (3610 m/11,840 ft.), the surrounding Shey-Phoksundo national park, and the hidden lands of Dolpo in this exclusive trekking and cultural tour. Starting with a cultural tour of Buddhist places and pilgrimage sites in Kathmandu valley for Dolpo people, we learn about the history, lifestyle and culture of the people who call our tour’s destination home before setting off on our trekking and cultural adventure in the Dolpo region.

We begin our trekking adventure the following day with a flight to Juphal. After 3 days of moderate trekking, we climb up to Ringmo village, where we stay at a local homestay overlooking Phoksundo lake. We then head towards Dho Tarap valley for a 6 day homestay retreat in Dho, Tokyu and Kalang villages. On the way, we climb two mountain passes (Numa La and Baga La; “La” == pass) over 5000 m/16,400 ft. enjoying great scenery on the way through forests and trails overlooking otherworldly landscape of the trans-Himalayan region, of which Dolpo is a part.

After reaching Dho Tarap valley, we will explore the local cuisine and lifestyles by staying in local houses, visit the various Tibetan Buddhist monasteries in the region, interact with various community members (teachers, students, monks, traditional Tibetan healers), and explore the beautiful villages of Dho, Tokyu and Kalang which are all nestled at the lap of mountains.

With 12 days of trekking and 10 days of day hikes/cultural tours and local homestay, this El Yak exclusive tour is designed to give you the most authentic touring experience in Dolpo while ensuring that the local economy is benefitted directly through the hiring of local guides, stay in homestays or teahouses instead of camping (which is what majority of travelers in the region do), and tourism promotion of the region.

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Tour concept, itinerary and program budgeting done in collaboration with Vision Dolpo, a local non-profit started by youths of Dho Tarap valley which oversees, among other health, education and energy related programs, the adminstration and operation of Crystal Mountain School, the first formal school in the region. El Yak and Vision Dolpo have designed this itinerary to maximize the benefits of travellers in the region to the local communities.

El Yak and Vision Dolpo are collaborating on tourism development in dolpo.

Overview

Explore the majestic high altitude Phoksundo lake (3610 m/11,840 ft.), the surrounding Shey-Phoksundo national park, and the hidden lands of Dolpo in this exclusive trekking and cultural tour. Starting with a cultural tour of Buddhist places and pilgrimage sites in Kathmandu valley for Dolpo people, we learn about the history, lifestyle and culture of the people who call our tour’s destination home before setting off on our trekking and cultural adventure in the Dolpo region.

We begin our trekking adventure the following day with a flight to Juphal. After 3 days of moderate trekking, we climb up to Ringmo village, where we stay at a local homestay overlooking Phoksundo lake. We then head towards Dho Tarap valley for a 6 day homestay retreat in Dho, Tokyu and Kalang villages. On the way, we climb two mountain passes (Numa La and Baga La; “”La”” == pass) over 5000 m/16,400 ft enjoying great scenery on the way through forests and trails overlooking otherworldly landscape of the trans-Himalayan region, of which Dolpo is a part.

After reaching Dho Tarap valley, we will explore the local cuisine and lifestyles by staying in local houses, visit the various Tibetan Buddhist monasteries in the region, interact with various community members (teachers, students, monks, traditional Tibetan healers), and explore the beautiful villages of Dho, Tokyu and Kalang which are all nestled at the lap of the mountains.

Explore the majestic Shey-Phoksundo national park and the hidden lands of Dolpo

  • Retreat and community homestay in Ringmo overlooking the majestic Phoksundo lake
  • Twelve day trekking through Shey-Phoksundo national park and high altitude valley of Dho-Tarap in Dolpo
  • Cross two passes (Numa La and Baga La) over 5000 m/16,400 ft
  • Twenty days of local stay (and cultural tour) including nine day homestay in Ringmo, Tokyu, Dho, and Kalang villages
  • Mindfulness and meditation sessions with local Buddhist monks in Tokyu and Dho

Itinerary

Our staff will welcome you at the Tribhuwan International Airport upon your arrival and transfer you to the hotel on a private vehicle. The evening can be spent exploring Thamel, a tourist hub offering numerous bars, shops and restaurant, as well as Basantapur, which gives you an instant taste of Nepali life. Later in the hotel, we will also brief you on trip details, safety and preparation for the adventure.
Our local guide will spend the day with you exploring the city of Kathmandu, its narrow alleys, historic temples, and its cuisine. We will explore the historic city that is also home to many Dolpo-pa, the indigenous people of the Dolpo region -- our primary destination. City-walking and taxi rides in Kathmandu can be thrilling but also a unique and fast way to explore the historic city. The day will end in a fine dinner in a peaceful environment where we will all enjoy local Dolpo cuisine next to the majestic Boudhanath stupa that is of great significance to Dolpo-pa and others throughout Nepal and Buddhists throughout the world. We will also discuss the next day's plan over dinner.
Early in the morning we will book a domestic mountain flight from Kathmandu to Juphal airport. Depending on ticket and weather conditions, we may need an additional day to get to Juphal via Nepalgunj. In this case, we will spend the extra day exploring the historic old parts of the bustling city and the new highway town that has sprung in the recent two decades.
Upon landing in Juphal, we will get a quick breakfast before taking a quick 2 hour jeep ride to Dunai, a bustling small trading town nestled between rocky cliffs alongside the Bheri river.
We will rest in Dunai at a hotel and explore the local town with a local guide who will lead the day-hike around the town and surrounding areas.
We begin our trekking journey today to the majestic Phoksundo lake. We cross the Shey-Phoksundo national park army outpost and a suspension bridge over the river, dramatically marking the beginning of an amazing journey ahead. We end the day at Chepka after a 5-7 hour hike up rocky trails and farms, with majestic views of waterfalls and lush vegetation of the national park.
We continue to ascend through forests, winter settlements of villages in Ringmo and nearby, ending at a stunning viewpoint overlooking the Phoksundo waterfall, and a distant view of the majestic Phoksundo Lake. We end our stay at Jharana hotel (if available) which offers grand views of the lush green mountain scenery.
We head towards Ringmo village, which is alongside Phoksundo Lake. Descending through birch forests, we meet the Phoksundo river close to its source. After crossing a suspension bridge over where Phoksundo river flows from the lake, we walk along the lake shore before reaching Ringmo village. We end our stay at a local homestay in the village, ending the first phase of this adventure with delicious local foods and liquor served by the host family.
Today and tomorrow, we spend our time in Ringmo admiring the local culture, the majestic lake and the stunning views of the rocky cliffs that form the banks of the lake and of Kanjirowa Himal (6612 m/21,690 ft.) in the background. We will be accompanied by a local guide from Ringmo who will show us the various aspects of the village, and take us on a day-hike visiting local monasteries, farms, and other religous sites.
We continue our stay in Ringmo with another day of relaxing and acclimatization, and cultural tour in the village. The day ends with a briefing on the journey ahead, which involves crossing two high mountain passes over 5000 m/16,400 ft.
Leaving Ringmo, we begin our journey to cross Baga La (5170 m/16960 ft.), the first of two passes in this adventure. Today, we head to the base camp crossing a suspension bridge to leave the village and hiking through the forests before walking alongside rocky cliffs and stunning views of the otherworldly landscape of the Dolpo region. We will be accompanied by a local guide.
We start our climb up Baga La pass early in the morning, crossing it in the afternoon and reaching Yak Kharkha around 3 pm. After a hard day of climb, we take much needed rest after quick meals, and head to bed early.
We begin our journey to cross Numa La (5300 m/17,400 ft.), the second challenging pass in this adventure. We head to the base camp slowly, enjoying the views and runimating on the daily struggles and the inspiring lifestyles of the people in the region.
We finish the climb up the pass today reaching Tokyu village late afternoon. Tokyu is one of the villages in the majestic valley of Dho-Tarap at an altitude of about 4200 m/13,780 ft. We spend our night at a local homestay enjoying the local delicacies and learning about the lifestyles of the people in this ethnically Tibetan region of Nepal.
We take a much needed break from trekking and enjoy the local sceneries and culture in Tokyu. We will be accompanied by a local guide who will show us various spiritual/religious, economic, and social aspects of the village. We will visit some historic sites around Tokyu village, and spend an afternoon learning from and meditating with monks in the local monasteries.
We continue with our local stay in Tokyu and explore more of the surrounding valley. Over the entirety of our stay in the valley and its villages, we will explore local foods and stay at family homestays. We end the night with a briefing on the next few days of the remaining adventure.
We head to Dho village, the other prominent village in Dho-Tarap valley, crossing Crystal Mountain School -- the first school in the Dolpo region. We will spend 1-2 hours at the school with students and teachers, and learn about the amazing work this school has been doing for over 25 years. We then head to Dho village and rest at a homestay.
We explore Dho village and the surrounding villages of Dhoro and Shipcho today, learn about the history of the region, and end the day with early dinner.
We begin our journey down to Kathmandu through Dunai. But first we explore Kalang village, a small village 3-4 hour away from Dho. We stay overnight at a homestay.
We continue to explore Kalang and the surrounding region today. We will most likely also do a short day hike exploring a little further from Kalang.
We begin our journey downwards with a 4 hour walk to Sisaul. We start staying in teahouses/tent hotels from today, as there are no villages or homestays on the route. The views continue to be stunning throughout the remaining journey.
We continue trekking, leaving early in the morning to reach Nawarpani by mid afternoon, passing by great views on some of the best hiking trails throughout the trip.
We make our way to Laisicap, which is another trading outpost with tent hotels. We relax by the mighty river right next to Laisicap after a long day of hike.
We hike for 4-6 hours today reaching Lawan, from where you can enjoy more stunning views.
This marks the final day of trekking. We head towards Dunai, mostly on jeep tracks. It's a relatively easy day of hiking and still enjoyable after the past couple of days of difficult hiking. We stay overnight in Dunai, relax and reflect on the experience.
We ride on a jeep to Juphal early in the morning to take a flight back to Kathmandu. We may need an additional day depending on weather and available routes for flights, in which case we will explore the airport town of Juphal.
After reaching Kathmandu, we will have some time for sightseeing in the afternoon. Some of the places we visit include UNESCO World Heritage Sites like Bouddhanath (the largest Buddhist shrine in the world), Pashupatinath (the holiest Hindu temples in the world), and Swayambhunath (a popular stupa perched on a hillock overlooking the city). Shopping can be done in the late afternoon, then in the evening, we invite you to a farewell dinner at a traditional Nepalese restaurant which hosts cultural performances, and you’re more than welcome to join the merry. We toast a round or two of locally brewed drinks to celebrate our biking achievement and to good health! Holidays should never have an ending date. So extend your trip and whet your appetite for adventure with a host of activities including trekking, bungy jumping, mountain flight, rafting, hiking, Chitwan jungle adventure, Lumbini heritage trip and shopping tours. These can be arranged before or after the adventure.
The trip concludes today. Our staff will drop you off at the Tribhuwan International Airport and wish you bon voyage for onward journey.

Costs

Costs Include

  • All the required permits and paperwork
  • Pick-up or drop-off service from and to the airport
  • Hotel stay in cities, homestays or local teahouses during trips
  • Transportation costs within the country including domestic flights (if needed)
  • Transportation, food, accommodation, daily wages and insurance of guide(s) and porter(s) during the trip (tips to supplement our guides earnings is highly encouraged)
  • First Aid Medical Kit (Your guide will carry the Medical Kit but we also advise to bring yourself for your own use especially if you have specific medical requirements.)

Costs Exclude

  • International airfare and Visa charges
  • Your travel and medical insurance
  • Your gear and/or equipment (unless request for rental during booking/inquiry)
  • Emergency expenses such as expenses on chartered helicopter
  • Personal Expenses such as shopping, bar bills, hot shower, telephone, or laundry
  • Services not mentioned or not promised by the agent/agency

Dates

TRIP DATES AVAILABILITY PRICE SPACE LEFT
October 4, 2022 - October 24, 2022 Available $4,325
10 Available
November 4, 2022 - November 24, 2022 Available $4,325
10 Available

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Lower Dolpo Trekking and Cultural Tour
Group Discount Available
From $4,325
/ Adult
  • All tours led by local guides with years of experience in the Himalayas
  • All tours follow international safety standards
  • All tours explore local homestays and teahouses where available
  • All tours contribute directly to local communities
  • All tours offer group discounts of up to 50%