Mt. Dhaulagiri is popular as the 7th highest mountain in the world. Dhaulagiri Circuit Trekking became well-known to the adventure enthusiasts after it was discovered by French Expedition Team in 1950. This trekking is a rewarding choice for stunning mountain views and wilderness. It requires sound physical stamina and also have to possess basic mountaineering skills. The awe-inspiring landscapes and off the beaten into the deep wilderness will be a mesmerizing experience to adventure lovers.
Dhaulagiri Circuit Trekking commences from Beni Bazar however the road connects up to Dharapani. Then the trail gradually ascends to Italian Base Camp with some tea houses which offers alluring mountain views and beautiful landscapes and also terraced fields. After we pass through some glaciers and virgin snow, we have a real challenge over French Pass (5355m). This pass is the highest pass of this trekking and also one of the highest passes in the world. The pass offers us some fabulous mountain views. This is really demanding. This major pass in this trekking leads us to a beautiful Hidden Valley. This pass or the point provides an opportunity to scale Dhampus Peak( 6060m) to mountaineer enthusiasts. The stretch of this Hidden Valley connects to Upper Dolpo and Upper Mustang region. This trek ends at Marpha. From Marpha one can choose to fly to Pokhara from Jomsom or can drive back to Beni then to Pokhara. Optionally, one can have a option to trek back to Nayapool then drive to Pokhara.
Dhaulagiri Circuit Trekking is one of the best classical trekking trails offering the opportunity to experience expedition feel to the adventure enthusiasts. This is the trekking from farming settlements to high alpine rocky mountain peaks with rugged terrain with no permanent settlements. Since, there is no permanent settlement in higher altitude of this region, we always have to organize camping trekking.
We, Team Himalaya has more than 10 years of organizing such camping trekking to Dhaulagiri region of Nepal with our equipped team. We primarily emphasize on safety and luxury during the trip. We always are flexible to operate the trip to Dhaulagiri Region according to your interest and time frame.
Day 01: Arrive in Kathmandu received by Team Himalaya staff.
On arrival meet our TH staff for courtesy transfer to respective hotels in the heart of Kathmandu at Thamel area, an interesting place for shopping and having meals in one of the many world class restaurants, pubs and bakery.
Our guide will inform on details regarding trek Around Worlds’ 7th Highest Dhaulagiri with Hidden Valley & French Pass.
Day 02: Drive to Beni 830m via Pokhara 860m 275 km – 07 hrs.
Early morning an interesting scenic drive for near 07 hours to Beni via the popular tourist city at Pokhara on the main busy highway, the drive carry’s on with fantastic vista of snow capped mountains of Mt. Annapurna-Manaslu and Mt. Dhaulagiri with the famous beautiful peak of Machhapuchhre the Fish Tail shaped mountain which is unclimbed so far and well respected and regarded as sacred mountain in its natural structure.
On reaching Pokhara our journey continues for another 04 hours to Beni town to begin this awesome adventure around Dhaulagiri and Kaligandaki valley. Beni a large town and headquarter of Dhaualgiri and Myagdi district, overnight in the best tourist standard lodge or hotels.
Day 03: Drive to Darbang and trek to Riverside 1,460 m – 04 hrs.
Our journey starts with another short drive on the dirt road following the raging Myagdi River upstream, passing number of farm villages and cultivated lands with terraces of rice, wheat or barley and mustard, after three hours of good interesting drive reaching at Darbang village like town an entrance or the gateway to Dhaulagiri and towards Dhorpatan and Dolpo area, after a stop for lunch break, our first day walk begins on the trails that winds up slowly for an hour to the hills, leaving the Myagdi river way down below, then heading towards cooler area after reaching the top ridge on the outskirt farm village and descend back to Myagdi River after a nice first day walk to camp by the River side with fabulous views of Putali and Ghurja Himal, adjoining Dhaulagiri massif chain of mountains during the day trek.
Day 04: Trek on route Bagar 1,700m – 06 hrs.
After catching the morning views of the distant snow capped mountains, morning walk starts following the path through farm fields and small scattered farm huts and hamlets with the views of Dhaulagiri Himal range. Then slowly the walk leads downhill through farm terraces to Gatti Khola ( a stream), after a lunch break in between with another two hours of steady climb brings to the base of a hill side on route Bagar village, near the confluence of Myagdi and Dhara rivers.
Day 05: Trek to Bagar 2,375m – 06 hrs.
Morning walk descends towards warm areas for the last time for many days, walking on paddy fields by Dhora Khola, after Dhora Khola, the trail climbs on the steep uphill for an hour or more reaching a small ridge then on the downhill walk passing farm houses and cultivated farm fields and terraces finally reaching to our overnight camp at a small farm village in Bagar, this will be the last human settlement and village on route to Dhaulagiri base camp till Marpha village at the Kaligandaki valley.
Day 06: Trek to Dovan 2,600m – 06 hours.
Our journey continues after leaving Bagar farm village following the trail into forest then with a climb on the western side of Myagdi fast flowing river, walk follows the small undulating path then reaching the top ridge, from here a steep downhill to reach an open small field surrounded by densely forested firs, pines and rhododendron trees at a small place called Dovan for overnight stop, Dovan a cattle herders place with a small temporary hut serving as teahouse or lodge for the trekkers and porters.
Day 07: Trek to Chartare / Bhainsi Kharka 3,000m -05 hrs.
After an overnight in this quiet spot with only the sound of nature and with only the sound of fast flowing Myagdi River, from Dovan our walk follows with a small wooden bridge to cross over Konaban Khola ( stream), after the bridge our route follows into dense forest then leading to another small stream after crossing a log or a plank bridge, then with a small climb up through the forest with views of Dhaulagiri I, western wall between the trees.
Walk continues on the downhill path to Myagdi Khola walking on the left bank, then it leads to a climb up towards another stream called Pakite Khola, just in short distance walk from the Konaban river, after crossing Pakite khola towards our overnight camp in a small place called as Chartare, or Bhainsi Kharka.
Day 08: Trek to Pakhaban (Japanese Camp) 3,750 m – 05 hrs.
From this heavily forested campsite our morning journey leads on the path towards an open area, after leaving the last forest and tree lines area to ice and rocky moraine region, walk follows leaving the forest area to a wide ice and moraine valley named as Italian Base Camp (the Italian expeditions camped here on route to the summit of Mt. Dhaulagiri in early 1960’s). After a break here walk heads with a climb to a rocky area then on the mountain side with a steep hill climb, crossing the moraine as the path narrows to cross and descend to another glacier which originated from the West Wall of
Mt. Dhaulagiri, then with an uphill climb on the opposite bank to a small grassy ground on a narrow valley for overnight camp on this spot called Pakhaban, and as well known as Japanese Camp.
Overnight camp offers a stupendous and magnificent view of Dhaulagiri I West Wall and of the rear the huge wall face of Tsaurabong Peak.
Day 09: Trek to Dhaulagiri Base Camp 4,750m – 06 hrs.
From here onwards for few days in the arctic like terrain of ice and huge rocky moraines, from the camp following a lateral moraine to a ice and boulder ridge, that descends on the right side of the valley buried in snows and fallen rocks, actually a long glacier walking towards Dhaulagiri Base Camp, then reaching a glaciated area walking along the undulating glacier surface as the valley winds up to a following a faint path with short up and down passage to reach our overnight camp at Dhaulagiri Base Camp with 4,750 meter high altitude, overlooking an impressive Dhaulagiri I ( 8,167 m) North Face, including the west peaks of Dhaulagiri II (7,751 m.), Dhaulagiri III (7,715 m.) and Dhaulagiri IV (7,618 m.) soaring high towards the blue open sky, and the notorious Dhaulagiri Ice Fall tumbling from the col in between Mt. Dhaulagiri and Tukuche Peak. As this place is quite rocky with stones and ice, camp is set where there is a clearing on the previous camp made by expeditions or by other trekkers, but this spot offers the closest view of Dhaulagiri I and of its massif glacier and icefall.
Day 10: Trek to Hidden Valley 4,900m with French Pass 5,360m.
After an awesome and marvelous time at Dhaulagiri Base Camp, morning walk carry’s on heading towards moraine and glacier, the route follows near to Tukuche Peak, after few hours of walking on glacier then it leads to an uphill reaching a gradual slope on this glaciated valley right side with further, walk all the way up towards at French Col at 5,360 meters, the highest spot of this amazing adventure. After reaching the highest point of this journey at French Pass where its festooned with lot of Buddhist prayer flag called Lungta in local language and in Tibetan, all the passes are respected and regarded as place of the god or holy spirit. From here marveling the surrounding stunning scenery, an easy walk follows on the short downhill path to our overnight camp in the Hidden Valley a wide valley a summer grazing ground and pasture for cattle’s and Yaks of the villagers from Kaligandaki areas, from this camp offering fabulous view of Sita Chuchura, the mountains of Mukut Himal, and Tashi Kang 5,386 m, which surrounds this campsite at Hidden Valley, among these peaks view of Tukche Peak west and to the rear the huge towering Dhaulagiri I. This Hidden Valley remained enclosed behind Dhaulagiri massif undiscovered and unexplored till last three decades.
Day 11: Trek to Yak Kharka 4,915m via Thapa pass 5,250 m – 05 hrs.
With two nights at Hidden Valley pulling up the energy our morning walk leads on the narrow path towards Thapa / Dhampus pass about two hours walk in snow conditions it can take an hour more with awesome views of Tukuche peaks and of Nilgiri’s Himal on the other side of the Kaligandaki valley, after few hours of gradual walk reaching at Thapa / Dhampus Pass at 5,250 m overlooking the deep cleft of Kaligandaki Valley and the Annapurna mountains ahead. From the high spot of this with panorama of mountains on the both side of Dhaulagiri-Tuckuche-Thapa or Dhampus peak, then on the front Nilgiri’s and Annapurna mountain range, after a glorious moment here a long descend to the overnight camp at Yak Kharka, this is a summer pasture for cattle’s and Yaks, from the camp Dhaulagiri I lies hidden by the huge bulk of Tuckche Peak, but Nilgiri’s peaks and Annapurna mountain range are visible from the campsite at Yak Kharka.
Day 12: Trek to Marpha 2,630 m – 04 hrs.
After being in complete wilderness with only the sound of nature, from Yak Kharka onwards encountering many villages, trekkers and mules train that bring the supplies to Jomsom onwards to upper Mustang area, from Yak Kharka an easy long walk on the downhill trail coming across back to the greens vegetation and into the forest with tree lines of rhododendron, pines and firs, after several hours of steep descent reaching at Kaligandaki river valley in Marpha for overnight stop in the comfort of cozy, nice lodge.
Marpha a little gem and a charming village with white washed houses and the people here are Thakali tribe, practice Tibetan Buddhism religion and culture, been trading with Tibet for century’s. Marpha is also famous for juicy apples the whole place has an apple orchard and apple product like dry apples and apricots, apple juice, brandy and local brew, afternoon free to explore this nice village and to taste its apple product and pies.
Day 13: Trek to Lete 2,480m – 06 hrs.
After an enjoyable time in Marpha, morning walk follows Kaligandaki river downstream reaching at Tukuche village, located beneath Tukuche peak and Dhaulagiri massif mountain, with fantastic views of Nilgiri’s peak and tumbling icefalls of Dhaualgiri’s East Face, after an hour walk from Tukuche to reach Larjung village, then crossing wide river bed, getting back to forested area lined with pines, oaks and rhododendron trees, the path leads away from the river for a while then back to river bed before Kalapani village, Kalapani, another nice village with excellent surrounding and view of Mt. Annapurna I, Nilgiri’s and Dhaulagiri above the beautiful pine tree lines. A short pleasant walk from here reaches at Lete village for overnight stop.
Day 14: Trek to Tatopani 1,190m – 06 hrs.
Trek from Kalapani and Lete onwards leads to a dramatic change in vegetation, from dry and arid country to warmer paddy terraces that leads in between two giant mountains Dhaulagiri and Annapurna forming world deepest of gorge Kaligandaki river valley. First two hours walk passes Ghasa villages through cool forest leading across many settlements, lodges and tea houses, the architectural style on houses changes with much ornately carved wood work. This pleasant walk continues towards terraced paddy fields and in warm sub-tropical climate all the way to Tatopani passing beautiful waterfalls of Rupsi on route.
Tatopani (Hot Spring) village the valley is quite constricted and it is quite warm with sub-tropic climate and vegetation, Tatopani is another nice village with large hot spring pools just by the bank of the River Kaligandaki.
Day 15: Trek to Ghorepani 2,750 m – 06 hrs.
After an enjoyable time in Tatopani, morning walk continues on the winding trail for an hour, to cross a bridge over Kaligandaki river, and then our route diverts heading to a steep terraced hillside, dotted with farms and villages, all the way through dense alpine forest reaching at Chitre, from here an hour climb to overnight stop at Ghorepani- Deurali village with fabulous views of world’s 07th highest Mt. Dhaulagiri towards North West, including Annapurna South and Vara-Shikar (Annapurna Fang), Ghorepani located on old Trans-Himalayan Salt Trade Route which extends all the way to Upper Mustang and beyond Tibet, this village inhabited with Pun Magar tribe and Ghorepani is famous for Pun Hill view point, offering super panorama of world’s three highest mountains with striking sunrise and sunset.
Day 16: Trek to Tirkhedhunga 1,500m -05 hours walk.
Early morning before sunrise an hour walk up to Pun-Hill at 3,190 meters, this wonderful hill top, with fantastic view of sunrise over mountain range from Mt. Dhaulagiri, Mt. Manaslu to Annapurna and as far to Ganesh Himal in the far eastern horizon including majestic Mt. Machhapuchhre “The Fish Tail” one of the most respected and unclimbed peak, after an enjoyable and impressive panorama walk back to Ghorepani through enchanting rhododendron forest, and then walk continues with a long descent to Ulleri on the stone paved steps all the way to the suspension bridge at Tirkhedhunga for overnight stop.
Day 17: Trek to Nayapul 1,100m and drive to Pokhara 860m.
Today the final trekking to end trek at Nayapul with a drive to Pokhara, morning walk leads downhill on gradual path most of the way passing many farm villages with beautiful views waterfalls, then reaching a nice village of Bhirethati next to Modi river with views of Mt. Machhapuchhre (Fish Tail), from here half hour walk reaches Nayapul completing walk of this great adventure, and then two hours interesting and scenic drive to the famous tourist spot in Pokhara for overnight stop near beautiful Lake Phewa.
Day 18: Drive back to Kathmandu – 06 hrs.
Morning a scenic drive to Kathmandu, after a wonderful memorable trip in the high mountains of Annapurna area, then on reaching Kathmandu transfer to respective hotels with afternoon free at leisure.
Day 19: In Kathmandu full day sightseeing tour.
Morning after breakfast at given time our city and cultural guide will guide you in and around Kathmandu at places of interest and importance, as Kathmandu Valley is full of World Heritage Sites the holy Pashupatinath temple, Bouddhanath (Little Tibet), Swayambhunath (Monkey Temple) & monasteries, ancient Kings Palaces and courtyard in Kathmandu; after an interesting sightseeing back to the hotel
Day 20: International departure homeward bound.
Last day in Nepal with wonderful memorable time in Himalaya trekking Around World’s 7th Highest Dhaulagiri with Team Himalaya and to airport for the flight back home or to respective destination.