Dolpo region covers about 15% of the total land area of Nepal. It is the biggest region of Nepal located in the mid-western part around the Himalayan range. It is a high altitude region hidden behind the high passes of the Himalayan range and the Dhaulagiri range, making the region get less amount of rain, and hence named the rain-shadowed area. Dolpo Region Trek region can be geographically distinguished between Upper Dolpo and Lower Dolpo. Upper Dolpo Trekking zone is more secluded zone, which was referred as a restricted zone for foreigners for centuries.
About 90% of the land elevation is above 3500m in the Dolpo region. The Mugu Karnali valley and the grand Shey Phoksundo Lake also lies in this region. A part of the region is protected by the Shey Phoksundo national park, which is the country’s largest conservation area that opened to trekkers in 1990s’. The national park protects many endangered animals like the blue sheep, musk deer, jackals, snow leopards, and birds such as Himalayan griffons, snow pigeons, impheyan pheasant and many more.
Despite the Dolpo region being the largest of the regions in Nepal, it is the most scarcely populated region. It is estimated only five thousand people are scattered throughout the region. People of Dolpo region settle in highest of the altitudes known as Do Tarap with numerous monasteries. The rich culture and traditions of people here relate closely to that of Tibetan people. They live a nomadic life and depend on agriculture, animal husbandry and trade for their living. The people here hardly make any contact with the rest of the country and are only familiar to Tibet through trade. They follow Shamanistic traditions and practice the ancient Bon religion. Their lifestyle and tradition make the visit to the Dolpo area a unique and interesting tour. Culturally and geographically, it is a mini-Tibet of Nepal.
The Shey Gompa of the Upper Dolpo is one of the major attractions of the region. It dates back to 11th century established by a Tibetan monk who arrived on a flying snow lion. Every year, in the month of July, the locals host a festival in the monastery. Hundreds of pilgrims visit the place and make a ‘Kora’ (religious circuit) around the monastery. The festival lasts for several days and people gather together from remote villages of the region to know the whereabouts of people, share news, do business and enjoy their time by drinking and dancing.
Himalayan Monk Travels & Treks is glad to operate Dolpo Trekking for you to make it your life experience. With carefully designed itinerary, professional and quality service, we shall help you make Dolpo trek a memorable one. Remember us for trekking in Nepal.