Dolpo Shey Festival Trek

  • Duration30 Days
  • GradeModerate - Adventure
  • Max. Altitude5350
  • AccommodationStandard Hotel - Camping
  • Best SeasonAug. 2024
  • Group SizeMinimum 1 Person

Overview 

Embark on a transcendent journey to Upper Dolpo and witness the mesmerizing Shey Festival, a sacred celebration that unfolds once every 12 years, marking the triumph of good over evil. Immerse yourself in the rich cultural tapestry of the region, where spirituality and tradition come alive against the backdrop of the mystical Crystal Mountain. 

The much-anticipated Shey festival, a vibrant celebration deeply rooted in cultural traditions, is set to enchant attendees from September 15th to September 22nd, 2024. This annual event promises a spectacular showcase of art, music, and local customs, creating an immersive experience for all participants. Mark your calendars for this week-long extravaganza, where the spirit of Shey will come alive in a tapestry of colors and traditions. 

A great Dolpo trek to the 67th 12-yearly Shey festival

The spiritual community of Dolpo comes together for the Shelri Dugra, four days of celebrations, archery, meetings and festivities. Alternately serious, dramatic and humorous, the atmospheric gompas and surrounds will be buzzing with humanity. It will be fun and photogenic, and a great chance to walk a kora or two of Shelri, Crystal Mountain.

Dolpo is a dramatic landscape of nature's colours and bedrock textures, water-sculpted gorges of sheer rockfaces and translucent turquoise rapids, steep hillsides of fragrant pine and alpine grasses crowned by soaring mountains, and all on a Himalayan scale. Meditatively blended into this are red ochre gompas with chanting incarnate lamas, jingling yak caravans driven by jaunty cowboys, snotty ragamuffins and their more circumspect parents living sustainably in once fortified stone villages. Our trek route is an appreciative, adventurous journey where we immerse ourselves in all that is Dolpo.

Our carefully thought-out, adaptable route takes in the best of Dolpo's picturesque villages and gompas, avoiding new dirt roads as much as possible, and also getting remote, well off the beaten track. Although Dolpo is said to be a rain shadow area, during the monsoon there are life-giving rain for the crops, none yet harvested, (rarely) thundering, overflowing rivers and glorious days of wildflowers and bright cloudscapes.

We begin with a road trip to Dunai. Attempting to fly to Juphal is normal however during the monsoon many flights are cancelled - there are mountains in those clouds! Instead we share a chartered bus with our crew for a true, classic road trip experience.

We begin trekking from the still surprisingly rustic district headquarter of Dunai, spending the next few days in a rough and deep gorge. A day from Dho-Tarap, we meet the road being pushed down through it. We soon leave farm tractors and motorbikes behind though, for a couple of days of wilderness trekking over a high pass to more charming villages and terraced fields. In Upper Dolpo proper, we take a grazing trail to kharkas with panoramas over to Tibetan mountains to Bhijer and Shyamling Gompa. Then we head to the Shey festival.

Which of the three passes will we take for our exit? Let's see which is most appealing and the least busy. All lead to the turquoise jewel of unmissable Phuksundo though, and back down that crystal bubbling stream and to Juphal, for a - fingers crossed - flight or the alternative road exit, which we have the time for.

There's definitely a "before it's gone" feel to trekking in the region now, and the almost medieval villages of Chharka, Tinje and Shimen are now linked by road to Jomsom reducing the charm of trekking (but helping out the locals substantially). So instead we head through Chagaon and Bhijer before looping back to Shey. Our exit is still road-free until Suligad, a couple of hours from Juphal.

The brunt of the monsoon falls against the high ridge south of Dolpo however a strong wave of the monsoon could push over meaning there could be a burst of heavy rains over a week, and this happens perhaps twice during the rainy season. However, for much of the time, the weather should feature fine mornings with developing cloudscapes, sometimes building to a light shower. The crops are bright green, the villages at their vibrant best and it is the prettiest time to trek through both the villages and the alpine areas filled with wildflowers.

All in all, our trek is a unique, fabulous Dolpo journey of variety.

Key Highlights 

Shey Gompa and the Spiritual Aura: Discover the heart of the festival at Shey Gompa, a spiritual haven perched at an altitude of around 4200 meters. Founded by the revered Tibetan Buddhist monk, Drotob Senge Yeshe, this monastery embodies the essence of the Crystal Mountain and the profound teachings of Kalachakra Tantrism. 

The Essence of the Shey Festival: In August, under the glow of the full moon, Dolpo transforms into a vibrant celebration of positivity, compassion, and conscience. Join pilgrims, visitors, and fellow trekkers in witnessing the age-old traditions of Bon Po followers, celebrating the victory over negativity and destruction. 

Cultural Immersion Amidst Pristine Beauty: Beyond the festivities, experience the allure of Upper Dolpo's pristine beauty. Wander through ancient pebble-stone villages that whisper tales of centuries past, seamlessly blending cultural immersion with nature's wonders. 

Phoksundo Lake and Shey Phoksundo National Park: Marvel at the breathtaking Phoksundo Lake, reflecting the azure sky at an altitude of 3,641 meters. Explore the wilderness of Shey Phoksundo National Park, a sanctuary for diverse flora and fauna, featuring encounters with snow leopards, grey wolves, musk deer, and the majestic Himalayan black bear. 

Your Invitation 

Join us on the Shey Festival Trek in 2024, a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to witness the splendor of the Shey Festival. The dates, intricately tied to the lunar calendar and guided by revered Buddhist gurus, will be finalized for an authentic experience. To embark on this cultural odyssey and explore the heart of Dolpo, register your interest with us. Be prepared to be enchanted by the rituals, the landscapes, and the ancient traditions that define the Shey Festival and the mystical land of Dolpo. 

Unveiling the Mystique: Shey Festival & Dolpo Adventure 2024 - A Comprehensive Itinerary 

Day 1Arrival in Kathmandu

  • Arrive in Kathmandu, the vibrant capital of Nepal.  
  • Transfer to your hotel for check-in.  
  • Briefing on the upcoming adventure.  
  • Overnight stay in Kathmandu.

Day 2Drive to Radi

  • Fly to Nepalgunj from Kathmandu. 
  • Transfer to Radi, the starting point of the trek. 
  • Overnight stay in Radi.

Day 3Radi – Khadang – Tripura Sundari

  • Begin the trek with a scenic route through Khadang to reach Tripura Sundari. 
  • Experience local culture and traditions. 
  • Overnight stay in Tripura Sundari.

Day 4Tripura Sundari – Bhim Pul – Kagni – Chhekpa (2678 m)

  • Trek through Bhim Pul and Kagni, absorbing breathtaking landscapes. 
  • Reach Chhekpa, a picturesque village at 2678 meters. 
  • Overnight stay in Chhekpa.

Day 5Chhekpa – Rechi – Samduwa Samjhana Hotel (3038 m)

  • Continue the journey through Rechi, a quaint village.  
  • Arrive at Samduwa Samjhana Hotel, situated at 3038 meters.  
  • Overnight stay at Samduwa Samjhana Hotel.

Day 6 Samjhana Hotel – Jharana – Rigmo Village (3641 m)

  • Trek to Jharana and proceed to Rigmo Village at an altitude of 3641 meters. 
  • Enjoy the serene beauty of the surroundings. 
  • Overnight stay in Rigmo Village.

Day 7Rigmo Village/Phoksundo Lake (3641 m) - Rest Day

  • Take a day to rest and explore the enchanting Ringmo Village and the pristine Phoksundo Lake. 
  • Immerse yourself in the local culture.

Day 8Rigmo Village/Phoksundo Lake – Phoksundo Khola Camp (3630 m)

  • Resume the trek, passing through Phoksundo Lake, a gem at 3641 meters. 
  • Reach Phoksundo Khola Camp at 3630 meters. 
  • Overnight stay at Phoksundo Khola Camp.

Day 9Phoksundo Khola Camp – Campsite – Pass Camp (4717 m)

  • Trek through diverse landscapes to the Pass Camp at 4717 meters. 
  • Experience the gradual change in terrain. 
  • Overnight stay at Pass Camp.

Day 10Pass Camp – Shey Gompa crossing the Nagdala La (5350 m)

  • A challenging day as you cross the Nagdala La pass at 5350 meters. 
  • Descend to the revered Shey Gompa at 4343 meters. 
  • Overnight stay at Shey Gompa.

Day 11 Shey Gompa (4343 m) - Rest Day/Observe Shey Festival

  • Immerse yourself in the Shey Festival, witnessing unique rituals and cultural celebrations.
  • Explore Shey Gompa and its spiritual significance.

Day 12 - 18Observe Shey Festival

Shelri Dugra: soak up the atmosphere of the ceremonies, visit the three gompas (Shey, Tsakhan and Gomoche), each very different, and trek the kora around Shelri, Shey Ribo Drukta, Crystal Mountain at this particularly auspicious time.

Day 19-30Return Trek Itinerary: (Note: The return trek follows a similar route in reverse.)

  • Retrace your steps, enjoying familiar landscapes and reflecting on the journey.
  • Arrive back in Kathmandu for a well-deserved celebration and farewell dinner.

  • International and domestic flights  
  • Accommodations in Kathmandu, Nepalgunj, and during the trek  
  • Experienced trekking guides and support staff  
  • All necessary permits and entrance fees  
  • Meals as per itinerary  
  • Transportation during the trip  
  • Cultural activities and interactions
  • Lunch and Dinner in Kathmandu
  • Trekking equipment any type of personal expenses such as Alcoholic Beverage drinks,phone and Laundry.
  • Emergency Rescue and Travel Insurance.
  • Trip Cancellation cost accident or Health, Loss Theft or Damage and personal effects. we Advice you to take out personal Travel Insurance.
  • Tips and Gratuities.

USD 2970  (Per Person)

USD 3499  (Per Person)

USD ACCOUNT

Bank Name: Nepal Investment Mega Bank Limited (NIMB) 

Account Name: Everest Sherpa Expedition Pvt. Ltd.

Thamel, Kathmandu, Nepal

Swift Code: NIBLNPKT

Account No: 13201100003780

The Trekking Day

The day usually begins between 6.30 am and 7.30 am, with breakfast. During breakfast, the crew members make up the loads for the porters. You often start hiking by 7:30 am, though we wait for the sun to warm the air at higher altitudes.

The pace for the day is set at a lower speed. Instead, you will have time to become aware of everything around you and to enjoy it. Our guides are excellent timekeepers but cannot make you rush over the mountains!

The afternoon walk follows a similar pattern to the morning; it is often shorter, and your lodge is usually reached between 4 pm and 5 pm. There is plenty of time to relax or explore the surrounding area until the evening meal is served at about 6.30 pm. After dinner, there is time to chat, read or enjoy a game of cards with our crew. Most members are asleep by 9 pm.

We offer a highly skilled and experienced team of trekking guides, porters, support staff, cooks, and kitchen staff if required. Our team is dedicated to ensuring your safety and comfort throughout your trek. We provide high-quality camping gear, nutritious meals, and clean drinking water to keep you energized and hydrated on your trek. Our guides are knowledgeable about the local culture, flora, and fauna and will provide you with insights into the region's history and traditions. Our porters will carry your luggage, leaving you free to focus on enjoying the stunning scenery and challenging trails. We are committed to making your trekking experience memorable and enjoyable.

The Company offers a variety of trekking, peak climbing, mountaineering expedition, and tour services through its website (everestsherpaexpedition.com).

Our Terms & Conditions contain legal obligations, we encourage you to read them carefully. They form the basis on which bookings are accepted by the Company.

Inquire, Booking & Payment Details

  1. You can make further queries about your desired trip through the “Get a Quote” form available on each trip detail page, we will reply to you within 24 hours with the best possible answer, and the rest of the communication will be through our official mail info@everestsherpaexpedition.com.
  2. To make confirmation of the booking, you need to make a non-refundable deposit prior to your departure date (the prior deposit and amount required to pay will notify you through our official mail because it depends on the season, and the nature of the trip you have chosen).
  3. You can pay non-refundable deposit via wire transfer to our company bank account. Or any payment method that is easy for you. For our banking details see the Bank Details section.
  4. The service charge taken by Bank or service provider during the money transfer whether that is wire transfer or credit card use will be your liability.
  5. The rest amount of the trip needs to pay upon your arrival in Kathmandu before the departure date.
  6. If you are not able to pay the due amount before your trip departure will be treated as the cancellation of the trip.
  7. Unforeseen situations like domestic flight delays, bad weather, and natural disasters causing trip delays are not our responsibilities and additional personal expenses will not be covered by us.

Payment Refunds & Cancellations

  1. If the trip is cancelled 45 days before the trip start, 50% of the deposited amount will be charged, but if the trip is postponed for some other date within 1 year time period, no charge will be made.
  2. If the trip is cancelled two weeks before the departure date, No refund will be made.
  3. If you are not able to continue your trip once it begins because of health or another other situation, no refund will be made.
  4. Trip cancellation because of an unforeseen situation like bad weather, we will assist you to follow other trips because most of the thing required for the trip has already been purchased, and making a refund for such thing is not possible therefore by mutual understanding, a certain percentage of amount will be refunded.

Only Staff Insurance

  1. Our company is responsible to make proper insurance (accident and medical insurance) for all the field staff including guide, cook, Sherpa, kitchen staff, and porters.
  2. We are not responsible for any type of insurance for the clients, therefore, we would like to suggest you to make proper insurance before you travel. If you need to know further about this you can contact us at info@everestsherpaexpedition.com

Disclaimer

  1. Our field leader and guide of the company have full rights to make decisions on changing the trip routes, and walking hours to make your trip comfortable and secure because of bad weather, and health-related issues.
  2. Everest Sherpa Expedition Pvt. Ltd. Can cancel any fixed departure but we will notify you prior to one month. The cancellation of the trip can be because of bad weather, natural disaster, or insufficient group size, all the deposit will be refunded in this case.
  3. It is your responsibility to take care of your valuable belongings in a safe place, if anything went wrong because of your carelessness, we are not responsible for such cases.
  4. Activities like Trekking, peak climbing, and mountaineering in the remote area could have high levels of risk, if anything goes wrong like serious injuries or death (very rare case), the company is not responsible which is beyond anyone’s hands.

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