Creative Holidays Nepal

Rara-Phoksundo trek


Rara-Phoksundo trek takes you off the beaten path, used only by locals and which is virtually unknown to commercial trekking groups. Phoksundo to Rara trek takes you from the Phoksundo-the deepest lake in Nepal in Dolpo to the Rara-the largest lake in Nepal in Mugu passing through Jumla the central town of Karnali Zone. Both the lakes are beautiful and amazing in their own respect and between these are many equally spectacular  passes which makes the journey more satisfying .We pass through villages where the lifestyle of the people reflects their ties with Tibet and Tibetan culture.

We follow the ancient Tibetan salt caravan route, across high passes and through the wilderness in one Nepal’s most remote areas. We visit ancient Buddhist and Bon monasteries and take you into the regions of truly amazing lakes like Phoksundo  and Rara. As we pass through alpine meadows filled with wildflowers, the snowy peaks soar up right above you in the horizon, where the silence is broke by the wonderful gush of glacial streams.The route also takes in a newly discovered village in Dolpo, Phot Village. The government authorities had no idea that this village existed until recent time.  Being far removed from civilization, this village still retains its age-old customs and practices and you get to interact with the villagers. 


  • Duration: 13 Days
  • Trip Grading: Strenuous
  • Max. Altitude: 5501m
  • Activity: Sightseeing and trekking
  • Starts In: Kathmandu
  • Ends In: Kathmandu
  • Trek Type: Camping/Lodging
  • Transportatio:Private Car
Day 1
Kathmandu to Nepalgunj

Arrive at the airport.The bus from Kathmandu takes us to Nepalgunj or you take a flight as well.

Day 2
Nepalgunj – Juphal [2475m] – Chhepka [2720m]

From Nepalgunj we fly to Juphal, which is a basic airport that connects Dolpa District to outside. It is normal for planes to get delayed or even postponed due to weather. From Juphal we hit towards Sulighat where road splits to Phoksundo valley and to Dunai the head quarter of Dolpa. There are few settlements where we can have the afternoon meal before finally settling down at Chhepka which is a small settlement of not more than 10 houses. The journey takes about 5-6 hours.

Day 3
Chhepka – Ringmogaun&Phoksundo Lake [3641m]

From Chhepka ,start north towards Phoksundo valley. The road reaches Shumdhuwa after 4-5 hours of journey which is a major junction with fooding facilities. We travel through western road through forests and follow a steep climb upto a rest house from where the 200m high water fall can be viewed although from a distance. It has been claimed as the highest waterfall in Nepal. From here we also get the first glimpse of the Phoksundo Lake. It is then at most 2 hours walk to Ringmogaun or the place of Phoksundo Lake.

Day 4
Ringmogaun – Phoksundo Lake view point – Ringmogaun– Pungmo [3500m]

Take the path to Shey-Gompa to have the spectacular view of the lake from a height. The trail rises more than 400m above the lake. It takes about 2 hours to reach the top from where the whole lake is visible, you may move forward to Ringmogaon. From here we move return back to Samduwa and cross the bridge and head to small Pungmo village.Pungmo village is the last settlement before Kagmara pass. From Pungmo village, the next settlement is the Army Camp [no fooding facilities here] which took us total of about 18 hours of walking. If you aren’t prepared or intend to stay outside you can skip the Kagmara Pass and reach Kaigaun by returning to Sulighat and take the more popular path from there but that would add half a day to the tour.

Day 5
Pungmo – Kagmara La Pass [5115m] – KagmaraPhedi [3500m]

It is a gradual climb towards the Kagmara Pass. The Kagmara pass is a very wide and long pass and it takes nearly 2 hours to cross the pass from the camp site. There are several streams on the way. Look for the sign of Acute Mountain sickness. The pass is marked by chorten and prayer flags as always. The top of the pass is too cold and windy to stay. But from the pass the surrounding ranges along with lakes and glaciers are visible. It is then rocky descend to the KagmaraPhedi.

Day 6
KagmaraPhedi – Kaigaon [2610m]

From the KagmaraPhedi we follow a narrow and difficult trail up to the army camp. It takes half a day to reach here. From this point the trial gets easier and there are settlements and monastry on the way. You can reach Kaigaon by evening where you can find lodging and fooding facilities.

Day 7
Kaigaon – MaureLanga pass [3894m] – Chotra [3380m]

The trail passes through hillside. After an hour of climb we reach MaureLanga Pass. This pass divides Dolpo district from Jumla. Like other passes you are bound to get a superb view, this time of the Bheri river valley and the surrounding hills. From the pass it is a long descent through thick forest to Chotra. Torches may be necessary.

Day 8
Chotra – Gothichaur La [2995m] – Jumla [2540m]

From Chotra, we first pass through Manigaon which is characterized by a long bridge. From here, we move eastward. The road divides at one point; one takes you directly on route to rara and the other to Jumla. The Gothichaur valley comes into view all of a sudden. The Gothichaur is a small scenic valley with streams, grassland and jungles in background. It is like a miniature version of Kathmandu valley. The valley is used for sheep breeding research project hence inhabited and clear of human activity but there will be plenty of temporary tent shops on the way. Crossing Gothichaur we move towards Jumla. The settlements and people start to increase as we move towards Jumla.

Day 9
Jumla – Daphe Langa [3691m] – Chautha [2807m]

The trek to Rara is easier than that to the Phoksundo with better facilities and trails on the way. Start as early as possible towards North.The road climbs gently up to Chauriyachaur which is a large field on the hill. The whole Jumla town can be seen from here. It is then a steep climb to the top of 3691m high Daphe Langa Pass. The DapheLanga pass is scenic. From here we descend through thick forest to the Bridge over river locally referred as ‘Lete Gad’. We cross the log bridge to north side after which it is short climb to NauriGhat or Bumra.

Day 10
Chautha – Ghuchi Langa [3480m] – Rara Lake [2980m]

From Chautha, again ascend to GhuchiLanga pass at 3480m. This pass is greener surrounded by pine forest. After 30 minutes of descend the road can be confusing. Take the path through pine forest on the left which takes directly to the Rara.After some steep descend then cross river and move ahead to small hamlet of Dhuir from which it is a steep climb of 30-60 minutes toJhyari which is a small village. After Jhyari the trails ascends and crosses the Park boundary marked by stone and reaches an open pasture.

Day 11
Rara Lake – Talcha

You can view the sunrise and explore around rara. Explore the majestic views of the lake with scenic backgrounds.After Rara Lake,trek to Talcha.

Day 12
Talcha- Surkhet or Nepalgunj

From Talcha take a flight to Surkhet or Nepalgunj .From Surkhet or Nepalgunj take a night bus to Kathmandu.

Day 13
Final Departure

Check in to Airport for final departure.