- Duration 23 days
- Max Altitude 5115 m
- Group Size 2-10
- Best Season Mar-May, Sep-Nov
- Per Day Walk 05-06 hrs
- Accomodation Hotel / Teahouse
- Start/End KTM /KTM
- Difficulty Challenging
- Trip Type Solo / Group /
- Location Dolpo Region
Memories are created. What remains in our memory – is the place we traveled, the path we took and the lifestyles we visited. Dalai Lama correctly said – Go someplace where you have never been before. After all, travel is never a matter of money but courage as said by Paulo Coelho.
This Upper Dolpo Trekking to Rara Traverse Trekking is not about exploring places, but experiencing a unique lifestyle and observing two natural beauties of Nepal – Shey Phoksundo Lake and Rara Lake. Apart, it is about getting into such regions that were always ignored, less traveled. This trip is a mixed trip of Dolpo Trekking and Rara Lake Trekking. As we get to experience both Rara Lake Tour and Dolpo Region Trekking.
Dolpo Region Trekking is filled up with Buddhist culture and lifestyle. You get to experience the wilderness in this trek. Meanwhile, Dolpo Region Trekking was the shooting place for Oscar-nominated movie ‘Himalayas’ too. Trekking to Mugu would be the next set of adventures where we get to experience the next set of adventures with all alpine forests, green meadows, tricky trails, etc. You make this side of Rara trek successful visiting Nepal’s largest lake too.
If you love adventure, and love being into the wild – this combined trip of Rara Lake Tour Package and Dolpo Trekking Package would be a lifetime memory for sure. The best time to make visit to this place is between April to June, and October to December.
Mountain Routes offers you best package, as it owns years long of experience and realizes the actual need. The trip is not costly at all, and one can get best cost offering here itself. Meanwhile, we can customize the trip as per your requirement as well.
Upper Dolpo Rara Lake Traverse detailed Itineraries
Day 1 : Arrival to Kathmandu
Once you land on Tribhuwan International Airport (TIA), our representative will be there to receive you. You will be taken to your standard hotel. You can take some rest to overcome your jet lag and tiredness. During the evening, we will have a detailed discussion about the entire trek. Briefings regarding Upper Dolpo Trekking and Rara Lake Trekking will be explained in brief.
In the meantime, you can enjoy the nightlife of Thamel. Or, you have an alternative to research about Dolpo Trek and Rara Lake Tour Package on your own.
Day 2 : Fly to Nepalgunj
After breakfast, we will make a small Kathmandu trip. Visiting around Pashupatinath, the holy place of Hindu and Boudha Stupa, a holy place for Buddhists will make you feel that you are really in an amazing place. We then set aside for lunch, and then move towards the airport to fly to Nepalgunj.
Nepalgunj will be the first place to travel towards Dolpo. This will be a scenic flight of around an hour to western Nepal. Nepalgunj is located near the border of India and is a sub-metropolitan city located in the Banke district of Nepal. During the evening, we walk around to visit the local market there. Overnight at the hotel of Nepalgunj.
Day 3 : Fly to Jhupal and trek to Dunai
We take the first flight from Nepalgunj to Jhupal of Dolpo. This 45 minutes of flight will be filled with scenic beauty as we get to see Annapurna and Dhaulagiri range through the window time and again. Once we land in Jhupal, we interact with people around – manage our luggage and fill the food supply that is required during the trek.
We then begin our Dolpo trekking formally walking above the Bheri River. We continue walking till we reach Dunai, the district center. Overnight will be spent at tented camp
Day 4 : Dunai to Chhepka
On this route of Dolpo Trek, we start our full day trekking package departing from Dunai. This walk will begin after crossing the river and then we enter Shey Phoksundo National Park. There we get to see the offices of National Park and an Army Barrack.
This trail will follow through some clusters of settlements. We then reach a small lodge at the place named Sangta. We take small rest down there and after around one and a half hours we reach Chhepka. Overnight at Chhepka.
Day 5 : Chhepka to Chunuwar
As this is a blend of both Rara Lake Trek and Dolpo Trek, we first walk through Dolpo Trekking. On this day, we first trek along with the trail leading beside Phoksundo River. Walking further we approach closer to Kharka trekking through the peaceful region, and the trail will take us high above to Phoksundo River till Rechi at the height of 3011 meters.
We then continue our hike along with the riverside trail towards Suligad Dovan. We walk further in the Dolpo region, cross the bridge of Phoksundo River and Yulung River and then finally arrive at Chunuwar. We can meet traditional doctors there at Amchi hospital. Overnight at Chunuwar.
Day 6 : Chunuwar to Phoksundo
This would be one of the most awaited days in this Upper Dolpo and Rara Lake Trek, as we start the trail heading towards Phoksundu Lake. We begin the trail initially going uphill towards the ridge. We get to experience the first glance at Phoksundo Lake and waterfall from distant places.
Walking further, we then get to experience a closer view of blue-colored Phoksundo. Shey Phoksundo lake is a freshwater lake among the hills and mountains – and it makes you feel that you are in heaven anyway. We get to observe Yak caravans around, and we will have plenty of time to spend around the lake. It’s okay if we decide to spend overnight at the large platform on the face of the lake itself.
Day 7 : Phoksundo Lake to Pungmo
After enjoying pleasant morning around Phoksundo Lake, we make our path further stepping next stone of Dolpo Trek. On this day, we follow the same route and then come back to Sumduwa and head towards Pungmo.
There are ups and downs, that we get to experience during this particular day of the trek. Pungo is a culturally enriched village located at a height of 3500 meters. We can have interaction with people here, this would be fun-filled. Overnight at Pungmo.
Day 8 : Pungmo to Kagmara High Camp
On this day of Dolpo and Rara Trekking, we start the day by following forest camp, we follow the track through riverbank of the river near a jungle with the bonfire. We will then walk through pine forest over a leveled path and then ascend the hill till we reach Kangla High Camp.
This trail is pretty difficult. The camp will then be set up on the highest spot, which has chances of facing a colder windy climate anyway. Overnight at the camp at Kagmara high Camp.
Day 9 : Kagmara High Camp to Kagmara Phedi
Waking up at the height of 4900 meters of altitude inside the camp would be something appreciable. This day of Upper Dolpo Rara Lake Traverse would be further adventures as we reach the height up to 5115 meters, at Kagmara La Pass.
We then start walking downhill towards Kagmara Phedi observing an entirely different set of vegetation till we reach Kagmara Phedi for the night camp. Overnight at Kagmara Phedi.
Day 10 : Kagmara Phedi to Toijum
This would be a normal trekking day with freshness, excitement, and energy-filled day of Upper Dolpo Rara Lake Traverse. We walk along with hills, hearing the river flow below. The route would be uphill and downhill. During the trial, we overcome through pine forests, barren fields, small streams, and few residential areas as well.
The houses around would be filled up with few people with whom we can interact during the trek. As we gradually head towards the Rara Lake tour, our steps would be closer towards a new set of vegetation and lifestyle around.
Day 11 : Toijum to Chaurikot
We begin this day of Rara Trek following the slighting trail through which we first reach. There exists a Bon monastery in this village where we can spend some quality time. Walking further from Hurikot we then reach Kain Gaun.
There remains a beautiful village here with amazing views of pines around the village. We then continue our Rara trekking journey heading towards Chaurikot. Overnight at Chaurikot.
Day 12 : Chaurikot to Chotra
What makes Upper Dolpo Rara Lake Traverse adventure-filled is not just limited to two lakes. There lies the next series of amazing Rara trekking trail that glorifies the entire beauty around.
On this day, we follow the trail from Chaurikot which gets upward towards Maure Langa Pass located at 3894 meters. Experiencing the thrilling experience here, we follow the trail that goes downward descending towards Chotra for our night stop. We get to experience forest-based life with mixed species of plants and observe the beautiful scenic views around.
This would be an amazing experience anyway. We finally reach Chotra where we spend overnight.
Day 13 : Chotra to Gothichaur
We further walk from Chotra this day heading towards Gothichaur continuing our Rara Trek. We come across several small villages experiencing the culture of Khas people. We get to observe small woods along with the road.
We will have to walk around three hours to reach Mani Gaun where we shall have our lunch. After short rest, we further continue the trek of 3 hours to Gothihchaur where we spend overnight.
Day 14 : Gothichaur to Jumla
This will be the next interesting day of the Rara Lake Tour Package. Waking up at Gothichaur, we spend some time to get refreshed on our own. We relax and let our bodies and soul rest peacefully. And, once we are ready we begin our trek.
We get to see the various motorable road under construction and there would lie construction works going on around in the meantime. We reach Jumla by evening. Jumla is such an amazing place to be around. Don’t miss apple products while you are in Jumla!
Day 15 : Trekking to Khali Gaun
We now formally begin our Rara trekking. Starting the trail from a village nearby, we shall initially go through a straight and easy walk; followed by a slightly ascending trail. After walking for around four hours, we then pass through small passes at Danphe Nangla till we reach Khali Gaun village.
It is the village where we get to observe an only technical school of Western Region – Karnali Technical School. It is okay to take a short trip around the school. There are hotels and tea houses to get refreshed in Khali Gaun.
Day 16 : Khali Gaun to Bulbule
Further coming across Rara Trek, we come to this day when we reach Kharila pass at height of 3050 meters. The trail would then go down till we make it to Nyawer village. We walk further crossing the big village where we get to see monasteries, Chorten along with prayer flags waving in the cool breeze.
Walking further while enjoying Rara Trekking adventure, we move along with the trail ascending gently till we cross a suspension bridge. After trekking the next ascending path – we then reach the checkpoint of Rara National Park, Bulbule. Overnight at Bulbule.
Day 17 : Bulbule to Jhyari via Ghuchi Lagna Pass
As we get to enter Rara National Park from the very beginning of the day, we move along with various ups and downs on the way till we catch the trail leading to Ghuchi Lagna Pass. Further observing various natural vegetation we ultimately reach Jhyari. Jhyari is a small village with the majority of Gurung’s population. We can observe the Tibetan lifestyle around the village and then.
Day 18 : Jhyari to Rara Lake
Ah! This is the most awaited day in Upper Dolpo Rara Lake Traverse, as we take our steps towards Rara Lake. This short 4-5 hours among green fields of the trek will finally take us to heavenly place – Rara Lake! Overnight at a camp built in Rara lake itself.
Day 19 : Rest at Rara
Our body requires rest. So this day, we allocate our day to rest. We walk around the biggest lake of Nepal which will ensure relief with the magnificent look. We observe various kinds of flowers which can be seen by the side.
There are options to cycle around and one can even enjoy boating thereby. There exists a hotel just by side, but it’s okay to stay in the camp itself.
Day 20 : Rara to Murma Top
We walk further with Rara Trek till we hike up to the top of Murma. This day we walk further with packed lunch. The trail from the lake would go through a pine forest, and it would be an unforgettable memory to walk around.
We get to see the entire view of the lake and villages, along with some mountains. This would be an amazing experience. We return to Rara for a night stay again.
Day 21 : Rara to Talcha
We follow the lake trail which goes through the jungle by the side of the lake itself. We come across the Army barrack and National Park office and then. After walking for a couple of hours we walk along the trail of Rara Trekking initially upward and then downward for the next couple of hours.
We ultimately reach the airport. As it is less likely that we get flights at this time, we spend our overnight nearby at Airport itself.
Day 22 : Flight to Nepalgunj and Kathmandu
We finally end our great Rara Trekking package catching a flight from Talcha to Nepalgunj, and then immediately catch the next flight to Kathmandu from Nepalgunj. We fly high with all the memories that we collected until we land at Tribhuwan International Airport, Kathmandu. Once we reach Kathmandu, we take a long rest – till the flight back.
Day 23 : Depart Kathmandu
Upper Dolpo Rara Lake Traverse: Frequently Asked Questions
How long does it take to complete Upper dolpo Rara lake Trek?
Upper Dolpo Rara Lake Trek takes around 23 days to complete with a standard itinerary where we will be trekking for 19 days. However, the itinerary could be managed at your convince.
Where do we start the trek and how much we will be walking per day?
Getting to Upper Dolpo we have to take a flight from Kathmandu to Nepaljung which will take around one hour the air distance from Kathmandu to Nepaljung is 362 KM. Nepaljung is located near the border of India. From Nepaljung we will take a flight to Jhupal of Dolpo this will take around 45 mins from Jhupal and from Jhupal our trek will start walking above the Bheri river. On average we will be walking for 6 to 8 hours a day. The walking duration depends on the day of the itinerary some days we have to walk for 5 hours and some days for 8 hours.
Is Upper Dolpo Rara Lake Trek difficult?
Upper Dolpo Rara Lake is a Technical and challenging trek. One needs to have previous experiences of Trekking and camping as you will be hiking for several days in rugged and steep terrain in a harsh climate. This trek is a technical trek you will be using different gears and equipment for this trek. This trek is specially made for enthusiastic trekkers and requires high commitment to complete the trek. Trekking in Upper Dolpo is difficult because this valley is least developed and was completely isolated from the rest of the world for a long period of time. The high passes, strong winds, harsh temperature and climate, Long walking and camping makes this trek more difficult. However this trek can be completed with proper training and commitment.
Should I do any special trainings for this trek?
Well you don’t need special training for this trek but your training should mainly be focused on
- Cardiovascular endurance
- Strength training
- Stamina and
- Mental preparation
You will be trekking for a long period of time and the altitude will increase gradually, increase in altitude decreases the oxygen level and your heart rate will also change. Cardiovascular exercises are essential for increases lung capacity. Activities like Swimming, Aerobics, cycling Treadmill, Gym helps to build good cardio as well as increase your stamina. At the same time, you also need to build your strength. Exercises like pushups, Pullups, Jumping jacks, Weight lifting helps to make you strong and increase your strength. You can also go for small hikes with your Rucksack for practice trek. Hiking or cycling up hills before the trek are found to be beneficial. But avoid overdoing as it increases the chance of injury, You should start slow and steady and gradually increase your pace once you know your limit then you can upgrade yourself to next level. One of the most important aspect for training is you need to have a strong mindset with NO GIVE UP attitude. You also need to spend several nights in Tented camps so camping before a trek is a good idea.
How cold can it can get ?
The temperature depends on the season and month you are trekking If you are trekking in spring(March to May) the temperature may get from -10 C to 13 C /and in high passes, it can get to Minus 10.
In summer and monsoon (June to August) it can get around -4C to 17 C
In Autumn (September to November) the temperature can get around -10 in high passes to 14 C in lower altitudes
In winter season the temperature can get as cold as -14C.
What is best season for trekking in Upper dolpo Rara lake?
Nepal has basically four seasons Spring, Monsoon, Autumn, and Winter. One can fully enjoy the trek in Spring and autumn as the temperatures and weathers are favourable in these seasons. As upper Dolpo is rain shadow area and receives less precipitation it can also be travelled in monsoon season. If you are looking for more challenge, we can also arrange a trip in the winter season. But trekking in winter requires a strong commitment.
Why should I choose Upper dolpo Rara lake as my destinations what are the top attractions of this trek?
Upper Dolpo Rara lake is one of the least travelled destinations of Nepal and also off the beaten trail. Compared to other Trekking regions this trek is less crowded and trekkers can fully enjoy the trek without any disturbances. This trek fills your heart with magnificent views of the mountains, diverse culture, Amazing landscapes, natural beauties and You will also have a once in a lifetime opportunity to witness the remote villages. Trekking in upper Dolpo makes you feel like you time travelled back in the ancient era the lifestyle, arts and culture is completely different from our today’s society. This place is not influenced by modern technology and lifestyle. You will have an experience of how the ancient people used to spend their daily lives. Some of the major attractions of this trek are:
- Shey-Phoksundo: The deepest lake of Nepal
- Rara Lake: the biggest Lake in Nepal
- Bon religion: One of the oldest religion in the world and is only practised in a few places.
- Shey-Phoksundo National park
- Rara National park
- People and culture
- Buddhism principles
- Peaks, mountains and glaciers
- Natural flora and fauna
- Festivals, rituals and ceremonies
- Camping experiences in high altitude
- Off the beaten trail
- Dolpo Bon school
- Sinjha valley
- Tinje valley
- Gumbas, mani walls, Chortens and monasteries
What are the mountains we may see in this trek
Upper Dolpo Rara trekking offers you the pristine views of peaks and mountains like
- World-renowned 8000-meter mountain Dhaulagiri and Annapurna
- Dolpo peak
- Mt Putha Hiuchuli peak
- Chureni Himal
- Guraj Himal
- Konabon peak
- Serku dolma Himal
- Kang Nyung than
- Kang Tokal
- Sita Chuchura
- Kanchauni lek
- Tripura Thumba
- Sechi la or Dhampus peak
- Dogari himal and many more small peaks like
- Sechi Lek
What kind of permits do I need for this trek?
Upper Dolpo is a restricted area and the rules are quite strict for this region. Upper Dolpo allows only 250 foreigners per year. You will need following permits for this trip
- Lower Dolpo permit
- Upper Dolpo permit
- Rara national park permit
- Shey- Phoksundo National park permits
All the necessary permits will be managed by our company and the cost of the permits will be sent to you Via Mail.
Is it safe to drink direct water on this trip?
We do not recommend drinking direct water as it is not safe and may cause health problems. All the waters should be treated before drinking. The waters will be treated by our guides and helpers by using purification tablets. You can also bring your own Life straw. You need to drink at least 3 to 4 litres of water per day as your body will quickly dehydrate.
Do you provide quality guides?
Yes, of course, our Guides have a license and specially trained For trekking and adventure. All of our guides have received training on
- Basic First Aid
- Basic Rescue
- High altitude Rescue
- Trekking management and operation
Our guides are fluent in English and have no problem in communication. You can freely question our guides about your confusions. They will happy to answer your queries and clear the confusions. We also provide special guides who are fluent in French, German, Italian, Spanish as per the necessity of the client.
What happens if I get sick and who will be responsible for my safety?
If any trekker gets sick during the trek, we will first try to identify the sickness and what caused the sickness. Most of the trekker might feel unwell during the whole trek. The sickness can arise for various reasons some may be due to the new place and culture and Some maybe by the weather and temperature. We provide the necessary techniques and skills to minimize and avoid these sicknesses. All of our guides are professionally trained has received a basic First Aid course. Our guides will provide basic treatment to minimize the symptoms. If the symptoms don’t get away and worsens then our guide will call for a rescue operation. The Rescue operation will depend on the environment sometimes we also have to call for helicopter Rescue. The cost of the helicopter rescue will be sent to you via mail. If the sickness is of altitude then you need to rest or DESCEND down and wait for the symptoms to get better.
Our company and guides will be responsible for your safety. Our guides will also be responsible for the staff and porter security.